I was sure that I had graduated from moron to average. Apparently I was wrong.
Ms. Shin, who always wants to help me, sometimes forgets that I’m a big boy. She just spent the last twenty minutes explaining a document to me. The problem is that the document was written in English. I should have been explaining it to her. Seriously…I had to explain words to her so that she could continue explaining the document to me.
The best part was when we got to this sentence: “Please come to the meeting with your ARC card and your address prepared.” This seems simple enough, but it could be confusing if you’re not a native English speaker.
Ms. Shin: You have to give speech at meeting.
Me: A speech?
Ms. Shin: Yes. It mean when you talk many people.
Me: I know what a speech is. I was not aware that I have to give a speech.
Ms. Shin: It say so here on paper. It say, ‘have address prepared.’
Me: I don’t know my address.
Ms. Shin: You should write it so you don’t forget it.
Me: I would love to write it, but it’s in Korean.
Ms. Shin: But you not speak Korean.
Me: …..yeah. I know. That’s the problem.
Ms. Shin: You should give address in English. You speak English.
It was here that a realized she thought “address” meant speech. She was under the impression that they wanted me to prepare a speech for a meeting this Friday. I explained that “address” in this case meant “mailing address”. Instead of acknowledging that I have a relatively solid grasp on English, she plowed right on through, explaining to me what I had just told her.
Ms. Shin: It say here you need have your mailing address prepared.
Me: It sure does.
Ms. Shin: So you should prepare your mailing address.
(I was frustrated, so I decided to screw with her.)
Me: How do you know?
Ms. Shin: It say here on paper. “Have address prepared.”
Me: Oh no…do I have to give a speech?
Ms. Shin: …..it mean mail address.
Me: I have to give a speech about the mail? I don’t even know how the mail works in Korea.
Ms. Shin: Maybe someone else explain.
I couldn’t help but laugh at this point. It was either that or have a total breakdown. Fortunately, I know that Ms. Shin is trying her best to help me – even if it is frustrating at times. Overall, she has done a lot to make my life easier. These situations are few and far between. But when they happen, it can be difficult to keep it together.
Until next time.