Alien language

I’ve encountered this odd problem for most of my adult life. Occasionally and quite often, those around me will start speaking to each other in a foreign language. Unfortunately I can only speak English. This predicament is always worse when I’m in a situation that surrounds me with new people, such as a new job, as no-one realises English is my only tongue. At the moment I daren’t go into the canteen as it’s worse than ever. I haven’t a clue what they’re talking about – I’ll just look out the window as these odd phrases whizz over my head.

Its not that they’re rude or anything, they just assume I know this language, I’m a bloke you see. It’s mandatory. I might just go in there at lunch time and get it off my chest, say something like “Lads listen, I thought I’d let you know: I can’t speak football. I’m not actually as quiet as you think I just can’t speak football… so I can’t join in the chit chat, and frankly I’m bored out of my skull listening to you lot every day.”

No I better wait for the inevitable question. “So who do you support John?” “Erm… a wife, a son, a mortgage and a cat… Oh hold on, you’re speaking football aren’t you? ah…gotcha… right… no I don’t support anyone: never had the slightest bit of interest, thanks for asking. Have you seen The Diving Bell and the Butterfly yet?”

  • Reply K8 the Gr8

    February 21, 2008, 3:49 pm

    Such music to my.. uh.. eyes to read this! I’m thankful every day that my dad wasn’t a football nut either.
    Soccer ANNOYS me. Why the hell are they paid so much anyway? What good does their profession do for mankind?! GRrrr.

  • Reply Justin Mason

    February 21, 2008, 4:07 pm

    agreed, this really pisses me off.
    trying to listen to the radio on a Saturday afternoon is similarly crappy — there’s nothing on except for sport!

  • Reply John Braine

    February 21, 2008, 4:09 pm

    The funny thing is that Fiona is football mad. Loves her sports. She married the wrong bloke! When we get into a taxi and the taxi driver starts speaking that foreign language it’s Fiona that pipes up with the lingo. Always amusing to see the reaction that gets.

  • Reply John Braine

    February 21, 2008, 4:42 pm

    Hi Justin. Yeah I hate that. It’s the one time I’d love to hear something entertaining on the wireless. The choice is very limiting. I tend to listen to BBC radio through the telly or Internet if I’m pottering around the house. Lots more choice. Lot’s more comedy etc too.

  • Reply Sharon

    March 7, 2008, 11:33 am

    I made sure to marry a man who’s as ignorant as myself on that game. I haven’t seen the Diving Bell… yet but, I’m sure it’d be far more interesting to talk about than football.

    Some women speak a funny foreign language too, about things like Beckhams, and diets (feckin diets!!) and shoes. But it doesn’t seem to be as common as the football stuff in men.

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