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Well my family is Portuguese and one day my grandfather was driving and left his signal light on i said papa " your blinka! your blinka!" he said "heeeyyy dont ever say that again". Comes to find out when i said " blinka " it is almost the same word in Portuguese for a mans private part.
When I was younger I had this book on how to speak arabic. In the book it had the english alphabet and what letters they would be in arabic along with how to say that letter. Using an english word like "cat" I would go to the book, look up the "c", "a", and "t" and then put the arabic letters and how they sounded for that. I would then go to my step-dad who speaks arabic and speak in this sad made up language. He would look at me like I was crazy. One day he asked what I was doing. I said I was speaking arabic. I explained to him how I had got the sentance. He spent at least five minutes strait laughing.
I used to think in other countries they said it in their language but thought it in english.
My mother used to teach (she's a teacher) at a school in Greece. A graduate from the school went to a university in America and when he told some girls he was Greek, she asked him something along the lines of, "So you speak Grecian? And do you still wear togas? Those sheet things?,". I wonder where she got that from.
When I was a child I used to thank God for the fact that I wasn't born in another country, because then I wouldn't speak the language.
I used to believe that other languages were like codes and to learn a language you just had to work out what the code was (i.e. every English J translated to an French U, or something) and then you'd be set.
What a surprise I got when started leaning French when I was 11!
I used to beleive that Spanish was just English spelled backwords.
i grew up speaking spanish. and when i was little, i used to think that english words were the same spanish ones, just spelled backwards.
As a French, when I was young, I thought every body spoke French at birth, and that people in other countries had to learn another language very early. I felt pity for them, and I was so proud for myself! This belief was supported by the fact that the first language the speakers use in the Olympic Games (on tv) is French : it's why I thought it was the first language at all.
i used to think that people who spoke foreign languages or had different accents had something mentally wrong with them.
One day in history class my friend tell's me she is going to spain and i said "oh yeah the place where they speak spanish." and then i said "so that means that people in mexico speak mexican right?" my friend says no thats not right. She tells me that mexican is not a language. This happened 3 weeks ago. Im 14 and in the 9th grade. YOU WILL HAVE TO FORGIVE ME I'M BLONDE
I used to belive that the whole world spoke english. When i would see other people speaking something that was not english I thought that those people were just retarded and had no brain.
as a child i firmly believed that accents counted as languages. so for the first eight years of my life i spoke Derby and if anyone asked me if i spoke English i would deny it compleatly! i was always amazed at my cousin who could speak both Derby and English lol
I used to believe that the Pakistanian was a joke. Like some kind of language to be laughed at. I thought you could speak it by saying gibberish. Me and my friend used to talk to eachother in 'Pakistanian' all the time.
"Bugoober globbity blooboo beefeefeem buh glah?"
I used to think that people only heard different languages differently, but didn't speak them differently. I thought all of the same words were coming out of our mouths, but my ears just couldn't hear the words right if they were coming out of a foreign person.
I used to think that if only you listened closely and intensely enough you would be able to understand any language automatically without learning it. I remember on holiday a German girl came up to me and started talking. She ran away after I had spent a few minutes leaning towards her , hands behind my back with an intense look of concentration on my face.
When I was about four I was OBSESSED with Egypt for some reason and I would never shut up about it. I remember saying I could speak Egyptian but it was really just random made-up nonsensical words but I kept saying it was Egyptian. I misheard "quiet" on a movie as "quegion" (pronounced like equation without the e) and I kept saying "quegion" was the Egyptian word for "quiet."
I used to believe that the whole world uses my linguage (I am from Croatia). I used to believe that everyone think in croatian. :) And then translate it to their linguage. How stupid, ha? ;)
When I was younger, I used to think that just by saying any random word that one of those words was bound to be a real word in some country.
A variation on the substitution theme: my family moved to Japan from California when I was seven. In Japanese class, they handed out a pronunciation chart for Hiragana, so I thought if I wanted to write in Japanese I just had to use these new characters instead of the latin alphabet.