|Yes, I do have a few of these guys.|
But they're even worse in foreign language classes because they don't know how to say what they want to say. So they wait a full minute and a half trying to think of the right word for the middle of a sentence, and then, after all that time, finally settle on saying it was "good."
Here are a few of the highlights of the verbal commentary in my English classes:
- After perhaps over-explaining the assignment to some blank-eyed ten year old boys, one of them stops me with "It eez cool, Madame. we got zis." I think they heard it on TV.
- "How do you say fuck, but polite?" I told them this was impossible.
- First, the girl asked me how to say "how do you say." And then once she knew, she started over in English: "How do you say 'douche'?" It took me a second of stunned silence to remember that in French, douche is "shower."
- "Fillmore, Taft, Grant, Garfield, Coolidge, Washington." This was their answer after I asked them to list six American presidents. Seriously? Seriously? Fillmore?! Are you kidding? Did you, as American citizens, even know that Garfield was anything more than a fat cat cartoon? The facts are in: French kids know more about American history than we do, and we are pathetic.
- "What is the difference between 'shut up,' 'shut the fuck up,' and 'be quiet?'"
Me: "Shut up is like tais-toi, be quiet is like soyez silent, and the other
one... is the bad one."
Neighboring kid, in French: "I told you that's what it was."
Original kid, in English: "Shut the fuck up, Antoine."