This afternoon, I pleasantly thumbed through a German newspaper, absorbing new words and gaining new insights. I love learning foreign languages and have also tried my hand with Spanish and Swedish, using a full-range of programs including Pimsleur, Barrons and Rosetta Stone. The audio versions of the guides all sound so pleasant and polite, don't they? You go to these foreign countries and you expect their citizens to all be intelligent, conversational, and friendly.
However, the translated phrase "Steve, please look straight ahead while you drive" is never said that way at all in conversation. It's probably more correct to translate it as "Keep your eyes on the road, jackass." Or "I would like you to join me for dancing or else I'll be sad" is more aptly translated as "Be at the dance club or be square", which could use further translated as "Shake your tailfeather tonight or I'm going to wet myself." And so on.
I remember pinching a phrase from my Wicked German phrase book during my first day in Austria, a German-speaking country, when my friends picked me up. A car cut us off and I said, "Watch out, you son of a bitch". They started laughing at me. When pressed for the reason for their laughter, they simply shrugged off my phrase and replied, "We don't say it quite like that here."
-Profession: Career Planning
-Favorite # of ice cubes in a glass: 10!
-As a former PTO (Parent Teacher Organization) president, what's the politically-charged situation: a brownie sale or magazine drive?: A magazine drive. I hate them. And I wouldn't want a finance magazine, by the way.
-As summer turns into fall and then winter, what's do you think the lowest acceptable temperature is to tan?: 70 degrees Fahrenheit
-When you are helping students with career choices, what is your biggest selling point for having 'a career'?: Probably relationships, which happen at 8 a.m. meetings. A lot of times, those 8 a.m. meetings aren't productive for much.