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No One Deserves To Deal With That

, , , , | Learning | May 23, 2021

I’m an American teaching in Mexico. I’m joking with a new teacher about how badly my digestive system reacted when I first arrived.

Me: “It took me about a month for my stomach to get used to things. I even ended up having to throw away a pair of underwear.”

Teacher: “You threw them away? Why didn’t you wash them?”

Me: “We don’t have a washing machine. Our cleaning woman does our clothes by hand.”

Teacher: “Why didn’t you ask her to wash them?”

Me: “That… might have been a bit much to ask.”

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, , , , , , | Learning | March 26, 2021

We’re in a Zoom class. One of my classmates doesn’t mute her microphone before trying to get her dog to leave the room.

Classmate: “Out! No! No, girl! Out! Out! Bad girl, let go of that! No! No! Out! Vade retro, canus!”

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My Cupholders Are So Deep Without All Those Coins!

, , , , , | Related | January 30, 2021

Day 294 of quarantine, yay. I’m paying for a delivery that doesn’t accept cards for whatever reason.

Me: “Hey, [Daughter], do you have change for a $100 bill?”

Daughter: “I haven’t even seen cash for almost a year.”

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They Put You In A Bit Of A Bind

, , | Right | January 5, 2021

I work for a large multinational supermarket chain. It has been about two weeks since school started, and most of the stock has been picked clean. The few school supplies that remain have already been put on clearance.

A father and daughter — she’s about twelve — come in looking for some last-minute supplies. I don’t work in that department, but since my coworker is out to lunch, I offer to help them look for their supplies.

I manage to scrounge about half the items on the list; everything else is sold out.

Dad: “Okay, the last item on the list is a one-inch, three-ring binder. What is that?”

Me: “Oh, the binders are all the way over here. Let me show you.”

Dad: “Yeah, but what are they?”

Me: *Hesitant* “Uh, they are like notebooks, but you can refill and exchange the pages inside.”

We get to the area where the binders are kept and start showing them the different styles we still have in stock.

Girl: “I really like this style, but this one has graph paper. I need lined.”

Me: “Uh, sure, but since it’s a binder, you can easily substitute the graph paper sheets for lined ones with no problem.”

Girl: “But I need lined and this one has graph paper!”

Me: “Yes, yes, but see? You push on these tabs, the rings open, and you can just pull out these graph pages and add the lined ones.”

Girl: “But that’s graph paper!”

Me: *Giving up hope* “Here; these other styles come preloaded with lined sheets.”

The girl picks one of these last binders and a pack of refill sheets and saunters off with her dad. My coworker comes back from her break just as I am finishing helping them and asks how things are going.

Me: “I can’t believe I just had to explain to them what a three-ring binder was and how to use it!”

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Ah, The Good Old Days

, , , , | Friendly | October 5, 2020

In 1998, I move from the US to Mexico to teach English. At the time, the only way to communicate with my friends back home is through an Internet cafe. Social media does not exist yet, so once a week I send a group email to my friends and answer their messages. Since Internet access is slow and expensive, I always write my letters in a rush, leading to incidents like this.

Friend #1: “What ages does your school serve?”

Friend #2: “What does your new girlfriend do?”

Me: “My school serves ages five to fourteen. My girlfriend is a student.”

A week later, I logged in to find several very concerned messages from my friends. I had to quickly clarify that my girlfriend was a full-time COLLEGE student.

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