WARNING: The following events are true, but the names have been changes to protect the innocent, and the ignorant.
I was stuck in the parking garage near the Convention Center today for a needlessly long time. I had to show up for an interview at for the Summer Art Institute. I came out holding my portfolio, and there is this guy sitting on the hood of a car. Usually, this sort of thing wouldn't bother me, but, motherfucker, it was MY car. No one sit on MY car. So I said at this guy, "Get off of Jackson!"
You see, my car's name is Jackson. He's a black car. Trust me, if you've seen him, you understand.
This guy just gives me this look like I've gone crazy. I talked at him some more, and eventually he answered, but he answered in Italian. Now, I don't speak Italian, and this guy did not speak English, yet somehow he became convinced he could make me understand him by talking at me louder.
People in the states do the same thing. At my last job, we had a bunch of FOBs show up, and they would ask a question in their native tongue, and one of us would try to answer in English. Seeing as the employees didn't understand what was being asked of them, I don't understand how, but that is life. Of course these people don't understand English, so my fellow employees would simply talk louder, as if shouting would miraculously make them understand the answer. It didn't.
Right, so we sat there for about twenty minutes talking at each other loudly, and some office workers came by, saw what was going on, and thought we were fighting, so they called up some of the security people. I tried talking at him in German, but he didn't understand that either. It was worth a shot.
When the security people got there, I explained this guy was sitting on my car, and wasn't getting off because he didn't understand English. I guess the security guys thought they could help make him understand English, so they tried talking at him. His understanding of English had not improved in the last five minutes, so it did not work.
Finally, one of the guys who owned the parking garage showed up. By then the Italian guy and I were surrounded by three burly security men, a group of bystanders, and one police officer who had been patrolling down town, and was called on scene by some of the security guys. Mr. Parking Garage Man pushed his way through the crowd, and wanted to know why we were harassing his nephew. I explained the situation, the guy just told his nephew to get up in Italian, and everyone else was just really let down by the situation.
The security people were upset because there was nothing to secure, the police officer was upset because there was no one to arrest, the bystanders were upset because nothing really interesting had happened, the parking garage guy was upset because he had been looking for his nephew the entire time, the nephew was upset because all he had wanted to know (as Mr. Parking Garage Man translated for me) was my name and if I'd like to get some coffee, and then he ended up getting harassed by 30-some odd Americans, and I was upset because there was now an ass print on my car.