Chipping Away At A Translation

| USA | Family & Kids, Language & Words, Theme Of The Month

(I am eating lunch in the lobby of my store, having a sandwich and a bag of chips, when a Spanish-speaking family walks in with a three-year-old boy. As they order, he walks a few feet over to me and points at my bag of chips. I don’t speak any Spanish.)

Little Boy: *pointing at my chips, saying something in Spanish*

Me: “Sorry, sweetie, these are mine. Maybe your mommy can get you some?”

(The little boy is pointing more furiously now, repeating a phrase I don’t understand.)

Me: “I’ll let you have some of mine if your mommy says it’s okay. I don’t want to give you anything you’re not allowed to have.”

(The little boy repeats the phrase again. This time, his teenage sister, standing in line, rushes over and pulls him away.)

Sister: “I’m so sorry!”

Me: “Oh, that’s okay! If it’s okay for him to have some he can—”

(By this point she has dragged the little boy to the other side of the store, where his parents are paying. I finish my break and go into the back to put away my purse and grab my apron. My Spanish-speaking coworker rushes over to me.)

Coworker: “Are you okay?”

Me: “Yeah, why?”

Coworker: “You didn’t hear what he was saying to you?”

Me: “I figured he wanted some of my chips.”

Coworker: “Yeah, then he started calling you a f****** a**-hole!”

His Hearing Is Run Of The Mill

| MD, USA | Bizarre, Food & Drink

Customer: “Can I get a chicken salad sandwich on wheat?”

Me: “Sure, big or small?”

Customer: “Wheat.”

Me: “Big or small?”

Customer: “WHEAT!”

Me: “Big or small—”

Customer: “WHEAT!”

Me: *quickly and loudly* “Size, what size, big or small—”

Customer: “WHEAT! Wait, what are you asking me?”

Me: “Big. Or. Small. Size?”

Customer: “Oh, just a smaller one. Sorry, I thought you were asking me wheat or white!”

Deaf To Reason

| USA | Bizarre, Musical Mayhem, Technology

(I am taking orders face to face with a tablet. There is live music and a ton of people, so it’s loud. Customers constantly cannot hear me, so I start out most interactions with a strong, loud voice.)

Me: “Hi, ma’am, what can I get for you?”

Customer: “Uh, a turkey sandwich?”

Me: “All right! Did you want the large or original size?”

Customer: *louder than me* “You don’t have to yell!”

Me: *lowers down to a normal volume* “Sorry, ma’am, did you want the big or small size?”

Customer: “Huh?” *leans down close to hear me*