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Sorry, I Canada Understand You

, , , , | Working | May 30, 2013

(My cousin, aunt, mother and I are all French-Canadian and speak French and English equally well, but our French has a Canadian accent to it. We visiting France and are at a restaurant.)

My Cousin: *in French* “Hello! I’d like two chicken burgers, chicken nuggets, and a beef burger, all with fries and Diet Coke, please.”

Server: *in English* “Listen, lady, if you can’t speak French, don’t insult us by trying. Now, what was your order again?”

(My cousin is visibly upset by the comment, but repeats the order in English.)

Server: “Okay, your total is [amount] euros. Enjoy your meal.” *mutters in French* “Stupid fat Americans. Who do they think they are?”

Me: “What was that, sorry?”

Server: “Oh, I just said, ‘Have a good day.’ I forgot you don’t understand French.”

Me: *in French* “Let’s see if you understand this: I want to see your manager.”

(The server’s face freezes and she starts apologizing.)

Me: “Manager. Now.”

(The manager comes over and, in French, I explain the situation. All the while the server is giving us dirty looks.)

Manager: *to the server* “What the h*** is wrong with you? Give these people their meal for free. This is coming out of your paycheck.”

Server: “But… but they were being rude! F****** Americans thinking they can speak French! They’re all f****** idiots!”

Me: “We’re from Quebec in Canada, not America, and if you’d bothered to pay attention instead of judging in the first five seconds, you’d hear that my cousin here speaks better French than you do!”

(The server started swearing at us in a mixture of English and French, and was finally forced away from the till by a colleague. The manager apologized profusely and offered us free meals the next time we came!)

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