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I was shocked when I found out that dogs in foreign countries didn't know English commands.
I used to think that language was invented by the prime minister and that every time there was a new prime minister there would be a new language. The language would be announced on TV where he would sit there and read out words explaining the language, like "the word toaster means toaster, the word bus means bus" etc etc etc
There is a Jordanian who owns a local restaurant/grocery close to where I live. I speak Arabic, so I like to speak it with him. He is Muslim, so I usually throw out an "As Salaam Alaikum" when I enter his store. 2 days ago, I was in a rush, so I yelled out the Arabic equivalent of "How are you?" to him instead, on my way to the back of his store. An older American couple, were in the store.
When I got up to the counter with my items, my friend said "That couple just apologized for your rudeness, & assured me that all Americans were not as intolerant as you." I laughed so hard that I cried.
The phonetic Arabic for "How are you" is "Eh, fuhkoo."
Never could understand, as a kid, why learning foreign languages was such a big deal. All you had to do was to work out how other people arranged their alphabets.
For instance ABC in English might be UMJ in Italian. So an English 'cab' was an Italian 'jum'. Simple!
When I was a kid, I thought there was a country where they spoke Pig Latin.
I used to believe my nieghboor jose invented the language spanish and he got rich and bought cars
I am from Scotland, and I used to believe that Gaelic was the language they spoke on an island called Garlic, situated off the north coast of Scotland.
As a child i grew up in england but spoke portguese at home. I didn't know anyone outside of my family who could speak it, therefore i believed that portuguese was a language invented by my family and used only by my family
I used to think Braille was the language they used in Brazil. I don't think I knew that Braille was the raised dots on everything.
When I was little I thought people that spoke foreign languages made it up as they went along, because it seemed no one ever understood them other than the people they knew. There was a monolingual Spanish kid in my preschool class and, based on this belief, went over and started trying to talk to him in gibberish. I'm sure the adults thought it was sweet, but that kid probably thought I was crazy after that...
I used to believe that people who spoke in different languages also laughed in different languages, I'm not really sure why.
I used to feel bad for people who spoke in other languages. It would be so much easier for them to not have to memorize all of that jibberish.
I'm Norwegian, and I used to believe that all foreigners thought in Norwegian, but spoke another language. I even went so far as asking my mother to tell some English visitors to "speak the way they think"...
I am third-generation Japanese (my grandparents were born in Japan and moved to the United States). My brother and sister used to believe that when they were young, they would only know English, when they were our parents' age, they would know both English and Japanese, and when they were our grandparents' age, they would forget the English and only speak Japanese.
When I was six at school we had a girl from Australia join us. Being interested in animals, I wanted to know what they were called in Australian. I didn't believe her when she told me a Kangaroo was called a Kangaroo in Australian nor when she told me a Koala Bear was called a Koala Bear. I told her she was making it up and wasn't really from Australia. I am now 33.
I used to believe that foreign languages used the same words as me only they used them differently (e.g. instead of calling a rabbit a rabbit they would call it a fork or something)
Me and my brother used to think the site PolishForums was a forum site about nail polish until we clicked the link. We found out it was not about nail polish, shoe polish, furniture polish, or anything related to polishing stuff. It was confusing...
when i was younger i overheard my parents talk about the CIA and since we spoke Spanish, when they said CIA it sounded like the word "silla" (which means chair in English). so for a long time i thought that there was this great big huge wooden chair that only very powerfull people used to sit in.
At five, I sat in the Chinese restaurant saying "ping, pang, pong" and thinking I was speaking their language. Then I thought the waiter got mad because I said someting bad.
When I first arrived in Australia I went to a Primary (Elementary) school in which we learned Greek as an extra subject. In England I had never learnt another language. I enjoyed learning all the letters of the Greek alphabet, they were interesting to look at and it was so much more fun to say "alpha" as opposed to "ay". Unfortunately I hadn't quite grasped the concept that Greek was an entirely different language of its own with different words for different things. When I had to write a sentence out in Greek I simply transferred all the English letters in the sentence for Greek letters. The result was, of course, a highly amusing code for my teacher to puzzle out. Needless to say, I didn't learn much Greek.