So I was working on a conservation project in northern Queensland, Australia. I was a member of an international team of volunteers -- we had a couple of Brits, a Japanese girl, two Korean guys, three people from France, an Aussie, two Danes and two Americans -- namely myself and this ditzy track-star girl in her early twenties.

So we were sitting down to a dinner of hamburgers and hotdogs one evening and making conversation about the various odd things that the Australian aborigines used to eat -- moths, ants, that sort of thing. And ditzy track-star girl turns to the Korean guys and says,

"I can't believe you people still eat DOG! That's SICK!"

And silence falls over the table. Everyone else stares at her, then looks at the shocked reaction on the Korean guys' faces, then looks at me as I sit there, utterly mortified.

"Jesus Aitch Christ, you stupid American bitch!" One of the guys -- an Australian or an Englishman, I don't recall which -- gets up and leaves the table.

The sad thing is, the girl still didn't understand what she did wrong until I sat her down and explained it to her in no uncertain terms.