Peppered With Translation Errors

, , , | Right | September 8, 2017

(We’ve just got in from our flight, and all we want to do is crash. Unfortunately, we’re also hungry. I look up a pizza place just down the street.)

Me: *on the phone* “Hallo. Können wir bitte ein Pizza haben?” *Hello. Can we please have a pizza?*

Pizza Man: *rapidly talks German but I catch the words, “Which kind?”*

Me: “Haben Sie Peperoni Pizza?” *Do you have pepperoni?*

Pizza Man: “Ja. Wie groß?” *Yes. How big?*

(The rest of the order goes okay, and I basically understand everything he says. When the pizza comes, however, it is not pepperoni. It has onions and peppers, and looks nothing like pepperoni pizza! I try talking to the guy, but we can’t seem to understand each other.)

Me: *thinking* “I’ll accept the pizza; it shouldn’t be that bad.”

(My mouth is on fire the rest of the night. I call my German mother to ask why this happened. She laughs at me for a solid minute.)

Mum: “I did the same thing when I was 13! I had just finished my stay in America, and I missed the pizza there. I asked the waitress for a pepperoni pizza. She was like, ‘Are you sure?’ She was so insistent, but I really wanted that pizza.”

Me: “So, you got a pepper pizza?”

Mum: “Yup! It was so spicy! You want salami pizza, dear. It’s a little saltier and less spicy than pepperoni, but it’s basically the same thing.”

Me: “Thank you so much!”

(I eventually learned to love German pizza, especially curry pizza, but I’ll never forget that first one!)

There’s No Benefit You Can Takeaway From This

, , | Right | September 8, 2017

(I am a part-time worker at a well-known pizza restaurant while waiting for my national exam results. During my fifth week of work, I am manning the podium at the entrance, where our current promotions are displayed, and where potential customers can browse the menus. At the time, there is this 1-for-1 promotional menu. It is a four-page menu, opened to the second and third pages to show all the foods eligible for the promotion. During the off-peak hours, two well-dressed customers came up to the podium.)

Me: “Welcome to [Restaurant]—”

Customer: “I want to know about this 1-for-1 promotion.” *gestures at the display*

Me: “The 1-for-1 promotion is only for dine-in, not takeaway. Pretty much, you choose any two items from this list and get the cheaper item free.”

Customer: “So, if I take away this pizza, I can get another free?”

Me: “Sorry, the 1-for-1 promotion is only for eating here.”

Customer: *raises an eyebrow at me* “NOTHING here says 1-for-1 is only for eating here.”

(At this point, I see her glance at my name-tag, which also has the word “Trainee” above my name. Unimpressed, she folds her arms and gives me a sort of arrogant look. Instead of being unsure and approaching my manager, who is manning the takeaway counter, I flip to the cover page of the menu and point to the fine print.)

Me: “It says here that, ‘Prices are subject to Goods and Service Tax as well as service charge.’ Service charge only applies for those who dine-in.”

([Customer], irritated, then glances to the display for $10 regular pizza takeaway and points to it.)

Customer: “With your 10% discount, how much will that be?”

Me: “You have to spend over $40 to enjoy the discount.”

(At this point, [Customer] gives up before glancing pointedly at her companion, who only shrugs before mouthing one of the pizza flavours. At this point, a small family had come in behind them, so I saw fit to redirect the first two customers to what I assume was their destination.)

Me: “If you would like to take away, you can proceed there and my manager can assist you.”

(Both women proceeded to the counter without a word and left me with two thoughts. One, how difficult can it be to calculate the assumed 10% ‘discount’ of a $10 pizza and deduce the final price of $9? Two, if she knew there even was a 10% discount, shouldn’t she also know of the amount she needs to spend to enjoy it? I ended up resigning a week later due to my school term starting. Never have I regretted that choice!)

Cheaper Than The Sum Of The Sum

| KS, USA | Working | June 12, 2014

(The local pizza chain in a small college town has a 10% discount for college students and employees. It was one of the places we’d often go to for lunch. Normally we’d each pay for our own meal, but on this day my coworker asks if I could cover for him since he forgot his wallet.)

Me: “I had the pizza buffet and a drink, and I’m also paying for [Coworker]’s buffet and drink. We work at the college and should get the 10% discount.”

Cashier: “Okay, so the it’s two buffets and two drinks, and each of you gets a 10% discount, so that’s 20% total discount. Your total is [amount].”

Coworker: “Um…”

Me: “Wait, that’s not how it works. The discount is only 10%.”

Cashier: “Yes. You each get 10% off, so that’s 20% total. You owe [amount].”

(Not knowing how to argue with that logic, I paid, and on the way out the door joked with my coworker.)

Me: “We need to bring the entire department out and maybe some others. If we got 10 people, everyone’s meal would be free! Would they even pay us if we brought 11 or more?”

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Pizza Pie Meets Pizza Fry

, | NJ, USA | Working | June 8, 2014

Me: “Can I have two plain slices of pizza and a side of fries?”

Waiter: “Sure.”

(I wait. He comes back, but with two slices of pizza with fries on them.)

Me: “Um…”

Waiter: “Is something wrong?”

Me: “I ordered two slices and fries.”

Waiter: “Oh, my god, I’m sorry!”

Me: “Don’t worry about it. Mistakes happen.”

Waiter: “You sure?”

Me: “I’m sure.”

(I am only able to eat one because it was filling, but it did taste great. Now whenever I get the same waiter, he makes sure I want my pizza and fries separate.)

Makes You Wanna Pop

, | Southfield, MI, USA | Working | June 2, 2014

(I work as a delivery driver for a major pizza chain. I have an exchange between me and one of the managers.)

Me: “We’re getting seriously low on pop in the cooler.”

Manager: “What about the pop cooler?”

Me: “We’re getting seriously low on pop. The cooler needs to be filled.”

Manager: “What’s wrong with the pop cooler? Is it broken?”

Me: “No! The cooler is fine! We are getting extremely low on ALL pop!”

Manager: “What do we need in the pop cooler?”

Me: “… Duck…”

Manager: “There should be plenty in the walk-in.”

Me: “… Duck? Seriously…?”

Manager: “Yeah, we’ll get it. Take your delivery.”

(A half hour later, after my return from a delivery:)

Manager: “Hey! The pop cooler is empty! Why didn’t you tell me?”

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