Just keep nodding and maybe the dork will go away…
All of a sudden with no advance notice, the grocery store deli has two Britons. This coincides with the elevation of a brusque Russian at the other store I frequent. His English skills I do not trust. He was presiding over a wheel of cheese large enough to give Sisyphus a hernia, and I noted that it was gouda. I like gouda. I asked if it was as good or better than the Masterpiece brand, which heretofore had been their prime gouda.
â€œYeah,â€ he said, in a way that guaranteed he neither understood the question nor cared about my inquiry. I repeated my question. He shrugged. â€œYeah.â€
Fine, well, yob tvoyu mat, tovarische, and I went back to the cold cuts. This isnâ€™t the first time the store has put non-English speakers into the one job that requires, you know, ENGLISH. But having Britons at the counter is entirely different. They say â€œcheersâ€ in a way that says â€œdonâ€™t even think of starting with the tally-ho pip pip stuff, mate.â€ Iâ€™m tempted to say â€œta,â€ just for fun, but these guys would either light up or grow grim and dark. Never irritate a professional meat sliced.
I actually know a little British slang, but if I used it I would sound like one of those pathetic wannabees who watch too much BBC America.
As opposed to a sad and boring little Midwesterner with too much time on his hands who probably thinks that if he SPEAKS A LITTLE LOUDER the stupid foreigner will understand him, when all they really want to do is stick a cheese knife in the back of his neck.
But I could be wrong about that.