Archive for the ‘Language Barrier’ Category

Wednes­day One-Lin­ers Get Schooled

Pro­fes­sor: So what do we know about these debt notes?” (si­lence) So what do *I* know about these debt notes, that ob­vi­ous­ly you don’t know?

–NYU Law School

Over­heard by: Ames

Pro­fes­sor: My fa­vorite words to hear are “just do noth­ing.” My sec­ond fa­vorites are “open bar.”

–Col­lege of Mount Saint Vin­cent, Bronx

En­vi­ron­men­tal his­to­ry pro­fes­sor: Look at some of the items on this menu from a ho­tel of Chica­go Thanks­giv­ing din­ner from 1872: loin of buf­fa­lo, an­te­lope steak in mush­room sauce, ham of bear, black tail deer, leg of moun­tain sheep, buf­fa­lo tongue… Miss Palin, your ta­ble is ready.

–Class­room, Ford­ham Uni­ver­si­ty

Over­heard by: Mar­tin Van Nos­trand

Lin­guis­tics pro­fes­sor, about Span­ish-speak­ing fam­i­lies who live in Span­ish-speak­ing neigh­bor­hoods: The on­ly Eng­lish these peo­ple hear is from their land­lords and so­cial work­ers.

–NYU Sil­ver Cen­ter

Over­heard by: Lat­ka Hero

NYU pro­fes­sor: So we’re go­ing to be walk­ing, and you’ll no­tice I walk pret­ty fast. But we’re in New York, and you’re sup­posed to walk like you know ex­act­ly where you’re go­ing in life and noth­ing is in your way. Be­cause if you slow down you’ll get mugged. (beat) It’s dog eat dog, peo­ple.

–NYU Class­room

Russ­ian lit­er­a­ture pro­fes­sor: Oh my god, you just to­tal­ly missed the point of Je­sus!

–NYU Class­room

Next Time Im­pede the In­ves­ti­ga­tion in Finnish

[Pa­trol car flash­ing lights at curb. Small group of high-school­ers cor­ralled against wall]Police of­fi­cer: So what hap­pened –what did you see?
Sharp teen: No hablo in­glés.
Of­fi­cer, in per­fect Span­ish: En­tonces, que pasó? Qué viste?
Smart teen: No hablo es­pañol!

–85th & Am­s­ter­dam

Over­heard by: Christo­pher Stone

She Un­der­stands Ac­ces­sories

Man in pa­per hat, leather jack­et cov­ered in so­da can tabs, and poofy skirt over jeans: She comes in and she comes home and breaks my heart, and the worst part is that I don’t un­der­stand her lan­guage. I’m bet­ter off with… [Steps back to peer at mag­a­zine a girl is read­ing] I’m bet­ter off with that one. What’s her name? Turn the page back one. Yeah, her. Tyra? Tyra. I’m bet­ter off with Tyra.

–Union Square

Over­heard by: Brownsvil­le­girl