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bert_the_turtle
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Postby bert_the_turtle » Sun Jul 31, 2011 7:43 pm

Compare how many people worldwide have Hebrew as native tongue with how many speak Spanish natively. There's the reason for the difference.
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Postby xander » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:02 pm

NeatNit wrote:
xyzyxx wrote:I assume there's a word "don't" that was missing?
If you don't speak Spanish fluently, they don't want you there?
It was there all along.. I have no idea what you're talking about. :P

To xander: my complaint is that people who deal with tourists every day as part of their job, speak to you in Spanish and expect you to understand every word they're saying. They really do.

And? Not every tourist speaks English, either. Many of them speak French, or Russian, or German, or Mandarin, or Japanese, or one of the hundreds of languages that are spoken around the world. Do you expect them to learn every one of those languages, too? You sound like an American. Stop. We are supposed to have the monopoly on ethnocentrism.

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Postby Xocrates » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:22 pm

To be perfectly fair, I know plenty of people that complain that the Spanish and French don't even try to understand other languages, though to be equally fair it's hard to tell how much of this is stereotyping or observer bias.

However the Spanish in particular are a bit of a sore point among Portuguese people since as they are our neighbouring country and speak a very similar language (someone from one country can probably understand the other language so long as it is written or spoken in a clear manner (which can be an issue since Spanish by default is spoken fairly fast)), but while we are often stuck trying to understand what they're saying, the opposite often does not happen.

Oh, and of course, the problem is that this happens even when they are the ones visiting.
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Postby bert_the_turtle » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:34 pm

Like those annoying Germans visiting the Netherlands.
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Postby Xocrates » Sun Jul 31, 2011 11:28 pm

Well, I guess I should clarify my point a bit lest I come across a xenophobic asshole :P

As xander said, tourists speak a wide variety of languages, and while it's unreasonable to expect that the kind of folk who deal with tourists know all of them, it's equally unreasonable to expect that ALL tourists try to learn the language of the visited country (for matters of both time and money), and even if you travel along with a translator/guide it's possible that he won't be available every time you need him.

However it's not unreasonable to expect someone who deals with foreigners frequently to at least learn a lingua franca or two, which in this day and age it's English. This is particularly true in the EU where the interactions between countries happen often enough that English is a mandatory course in school.

Likewise, it's not unreasonable to expect the folk who deals with tourists to adapt their language so as to try and make their point come across even if they don't speak the other person language.
For instances, I once recall having lunch at a place and some foreign guy came in, the owner having barely any grasp of english pointed to the special (duck rice) and said "Daffy duck" so that the other person at least knew it was a duck dish. Likewise I've recently came across a tourist asking for directions in a very broken Portuguese, I gave it to him by using short words and pointing at both the map and the nearby streets (I have no idea if he actually spoke english or not).
This sort of behaviour is not unreasonable, but acting like you're supposed to know their language perfectly is.
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Postby jelco » Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:14 pm

In a rather on-topic coincidence: I just returned from the eastern regions of Belgium (both the French and the minor German parts) with the route going mostly through Germany (our geography makes that shorter - also we visited Movie Park Germany on the way back). None of us speak proper French (I can understand about half of the average conversation but not speak a single word) and then we had to switch to German occasionally as well.

Belgium is weird in that it is completely unpredictable which languages someone will speak besides the major local language. In Wallonia it's a given pretty much everyone speaks French, but Dutch and English seem equally unlikely. Germany however has a lot of people who can somewhat understand English but none of them seem to really speak it. In the end we were all so caught up in the language shuffling that most of us ended up mixing German, French, English and Dutch in our conversations. It's hard to get more confusing.

And after this awesome weekend that I so didn't want to end, I have one day at home after which I'll be going back to Germany for Wacken. I have no idea what to expect of the languages people speak over there, since it is a very international festival, but in the end it is still Germany.

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Last edited by jelco on Tue Aug 02, 2011 7:40 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby ynbniar » Tue Aug 02, 2011 1:15 am

That Limbo is darker than a bagful of nighttime :shock:
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Postby Ace Rimmer » Tue Aug 02, 2011 3:15 am

Random pics...

More colored pancakes, this time with squeeze bottles! It was too late in the day to get fancy with creations. (flavored with fruit)

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Lego creations. Whee. :P

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Postby jelco » Tue Aug 02, 2011 7:17 pm

Awesome and not so awesome. I don't mind a little cold and rain but saturday is going to be absolutely soaked. :(

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Postby Ace Rimmer » Tue Aug 02, 2011 8:43 pm

jelco wrote:Awesome

I have to disagree.

One of the people posting comments said what I was thinking, so I'll just quote him/her:

Sam F. wrote:Nice...but does parking in a bike lane give the govt the right to total your car?!? Vigilante justice by elected official if you ask me. (Now, if this were a publicity stunt I might fell otherwise.) :-|

I wonder what the law concering the mayors actions are?
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Postby zjoere » Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:30 pm

What I'm wondering is: where did he get the tank? Does every city major in Lithuania get one? Because in that case I'm moving and becoming a politician.
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Postby NeatNit » Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:45 pm

This was probably staged, but damn that is awesome. This guy should be president of the world.
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Postby xander » Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:58 pm

Ace Rimmer wrote:
jelco wrote:Awesome

I have to disagree.

One of the people posting comments said what I was thinking, so I'll just quote him/her:

Sam F. wrote:Nice...but does parking in a bike lane give the govt the right to total your car?!? Vigilante justice by elected official if you ask me. (Now, if this were a publicity stunt I might fell otherwise.) :-|

I wonder what the law concering the mayors actions are?

This. Assuming that this wasn't a publicity stunt, I would say that the city owes the owner of the car a new Mercedes, less the $50 parking fine (or whatever the fine is, in whatever currency it is kept in).

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Postby microchip08 » Tue Aug 02, 2011 10:36 pm

Well, I know that in the UK one's car can be crushed if one doesn't pay one's car tax.

The article mentions that the car was later crushed, implying that the law in Lithuania states that crushing is the usual fate for law-breaking cars.
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Postby NeatNit » Tue Aug 02, 2011 11:22 pm

microchip08 wrote:Well, I know that in the UK one's car can be crushed if one doesn't pay one's car tax.
Found that out the hard way? ;)

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