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Not A Fan Of Their Behavior

, , , , , | Right | May 9, 2022

We were seated in a restaurant on a hot, humid night in Bali with a large fan covering the few occupied tables. A group of tourists walked in, surveyed the seating and chose to sit on the other side of the restaurant. After a moment they realised the fan wasn’t reaching their table and the polite thing would be to move closer, but no.

One of them got up and moved the whole fan over to their side, directly pointed at them and leaving all the other patrons without airflow. 

After we had finished our meals I approached them and asked if they were from [Specific country].

Tourist: “Yes, did you recognise our accents?”

Me: “No, just noting how rude you were taking the fan for yourselves. Your country has a reputation for rudeness and you were so stereotypical.”

They tried to justify it because they were hot. Yeah mate, so were the rest of us.

Your Number Is Up, Buddy

, , , | Legal | February 1, 2022

This is back in the late 1990s or early 2000s. My parents and I had just moved into this new town. Dad worked at this big local bank, and as a bonus to his promotion (part of the reason why we moved), Dad was given a nice townhouse downtown from the bank at a very cheap price. The house had been confiscated by the bank since the previous owner couldn’t pay his debts and bailed.

A few weeks after we moved in, we got a call at midnight. It woke everyone up, and Dad picked up the phone.

Dad: “Hello?”

Drunk Caller: “Pick a number… pick a number…”

Dad: *Confused* “Excuse me?”

Drunk Caller: “Pick a number… pick a number…”

Dad: “Who is this?”

Drunk Caller: “Come on, man, this is [Drunk Caller]. Now pick a number.”

Dad: “Sorry, you have the wrong number.”

Drunk Caller: “Oh… Okay…” *Click*

This continued for weeks and Dad got increasingly annoyed every time this caller called again and again, even when we told him that he had the wrong number. When we asked around, we found out that the previous owner of our house was a well-known gambling addict and was known to be rowdy late into the night. Dad concluded that the drunk caller was one of his gambling buddies and didn’t know his friend had fled the town.

We got a call from the drunk gambler dude again, and Dad told him that the previous owner of this house was no longer living here.

Drunk Caller: “Oh… okay. Now pick a number.”

Dad: *Angrily* “Don’t call this number again!” *Click*

Unfortunately, the guy kept calling, no matter how many times we told him that his gambling buddy doesn’t live here anymore. He kept repeating the same words over and over each call.

Finally, Dad had enough when we got another call from the same guy one night.

Dad: *Gruffly* “Evening.”

Drunk Caller: “Pick a number… pick a number…”

Dad: *Imitating a deep authoritative voice* “This is the Precinct Police Station of [Town]. Who are you?”

Drunk Caller: “Pick a numb— Wait, what?”

Dad: “Are you deaf? You have called the Precinct Police Station of [Town]! Now state your purpose or I’ll charge you for wasting my time!”

Drunk Caller: “Ah! I’m sorry! Sorry!” *Click*

Dad: “That’s what I thought.”

Needless to say, we didn’t get another call from that guy again.

Babel-ing On, Part 3

, , , , , , | Right | January 4, 2022

My Dutch in-laws are visiting me in Jakarta for a few days before my wedding. My Dutch is crap, but I still use it with them for practice.

The day after they arrive, I take them to a sit-down restaurant that serves Indonesian food. Not long after we sit down, the waiter comes to take our order. I tell the waiter that we would like a bottle of water to be shared by the table, then start asking what everybody wants. It takes me a while to realize that they (even the waiter) are looking at me funny.

It takes me even longer to realize what’s wrong.

My scattered bride-brain somehow switched the language. I spoke to the waiter in Dutch and asked my Dutch family for their orders in Indonesian instead. Of course, they didn’t answer me.

Related:
Babel-ing On, Part 2
Babel-ing On

The Name’s The Thing

, , , , , | Learning | September 12, 2021

I was seven months into my first year in University and had to stay at the student dorm with around 500 other first-year students. My uncle kept pestering me whether I had met his friend’s daughter. I kept telling him that it was like looking for hay in a haystack. One day, his wife called when I was at the canteen with a friend and their roommate.

Friend: “Why did you sound annoyed at the end?”

Me: “My aunt and uncle are asking me the darndest thing.”

Friend: “What?”

Me: “They keep asking whether I have met their friend’s daughter. They don’t even know her name — the most important clue I need!”

Friend’s Roommate: “My dad, too! You might as well be looking for me and I’m looking for you.”

Me: “Might as well. What’s your dad’s name?”

Friend’s Roommate: “[Uncle’s Friend].”

Me: “That’s the same na—” *eyes going wide* “Wait! No!”

My friend’s roommate’s eyes went as wide as mine.

Friend’s Roommate: “You’re kidding?!”

Me: “Does he have a friend named [Uncle]?”

Friend’s Roommate: “Yes!”

Me: “With a son that looks like [Famous Chinese Actor]?”

Friend’s Roommate: “YES!”

Yep. She was my uncle’s friend’s daughter, and we had known each other for seven months at that time. We had just never mentioned my uncle’s or her dad’s names, and they kept forgetting our names.

Keep Your Nose Out Of Other People’s Uteruses!

, , , , | Working | September 7, 2021

I just got back to the office from my two-week honeymoon. I am waiting for the lift when a coworker that is notorious for talking too much and too loud comes to congratulate me on the wedding. It is unfortunately common in our culture to ask about things that most western cultures think to be too rude, but this one takes the cake.

Coworker: “Hi! Congratulations on the wedding! How are you?”

Me: “Thank you! I am good!”

Coworker: “So, are you pregnant yet?”

Me: *Laughs* “I am not.”

Coworker: “Nah. I’m sure you are. You just don’t know it yet.”

Me: “No. I’m pretty sure I’m not pregnant.”

Coworker: “I know you are pregnant! Trust me! Go get yourself checked.”

Me: “I. Am. Not. Pregnant!”

Coworker: “Yes, you are! I have a gift for this kind of thing. I’m never wrong!”

Me: “Well, you are wrong. And I am taking this lift. Goodbye.”

Coworker: *As the doors close* “Go buy a test pack!”

I didn’t buy a test pack. I stopped my pills two years after that exchange and finally got pregnant six months later.