You’ll Find It Next To Gilligan’s Island

, , , , , , | Right | July 19, 2019

(I work in a visitor center in an area known for its high Gullah population. Gullah people are the descendants of African slaves who developed their own unique culture, language, and religion in the American low-country. For some reason, we get a lot of visitors who think that they live on some kind of reservation like zoo exhibits, and it is surprisingly difficult to convince them that Gullah are regular people who live like everyone else. This call, however, really makes me question my faith in humanity.)

Me: “Good afternoon. How can I help you today?”

Caller: “I want to go to Gullah Gullah Island.”

Me: “I’m sorry; did you say Gullah Gullah Island?”

Caller: “Yes. I heard it was in South Carolina and I want to go there.”

Me: “Sir, as far as I know, that’s just a TV show.”

Caller: “No, I was told it was in South Carolina.”

(While he’s talking, I’m looking it up to see if it is a real place.)

Me: “It looks like the TV show was based on Saint Helena Island, which is a gorgeous island with lots of Gullah history—”

Caller: “No, I want to go to Gullah Gullah Island to see the Gullah people.”

Me: “Sir, I’m not sure what else to tell you. Gullah Gullah Island itself is not a real place. It is based on a real island, which is a lovely place to visit, but it is not called Gullah Gullah Island.”

Caller: “You’re useless. I’m going to talk to someone who actually knows what they’re doing.”

(I hope he enjoys his visit to the non-existent Gullah Gullah Island!)

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Hopi-ng For Them To Leave

, , , , | Right | April 3, 2018

(It’s first thing in the morning at the Visitor Center and I’m working behind the counter, sending out some emails. A couple with two middle-school-aged kids comes in and starts looking at brochures. The wife picks up a map that tells some of the history of Arizona and opens it up — I assume, as my back is turned to her while she is doing this. The woman gets angry and chucks the map at the back of my head.)

Woman: “This is a horrible map; it doesn’t even show Hopi! It only shows Navajo Nation. I bet the Navajo love that!”

Me: “I’m sorry. We don’t have any control over what is printed on the free maps.”

Woman: “I would complain to the publishers! They don’t have Hopi on this map!”

(My coworker and I look at each other, eyebrows raised.)

Me: “I’m sorry that map isn’t what you want; here’s a free map of Arizona that has all of the reservations on it.” *hands woman the map*

(After she left, we looked at the map in question. The counties were shown on the map, and none of the reservations. “Navajo” in this case was referring to a county.)

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