E Yes L

What is with this. Have you ever noticed this? People who have trouble with English, when they don’t understand, tend to just say, “Yes.” Has this happened to you? It happens to me, and it drives me nuts!

One day, I was walking to the bus, and it was colder than cold, so I didn’t want to stand at the bus stop. So I went in the shelter that was a ways back from it, and woohoo, there was someone else in there. So I said to her, “Excuse me, can you let me know when a certain bus comes in?” Without hesitation, the heavily accented voice said, “Yes.” So I stood there, she didn’t say much else, but that’s normal. Then the buses started coming in. She stood there, and stood there, and it seemed like amillion buses came in, so I started to get nervous. So I came outside and asked someone if the bus I wanted was in. They said it was, and led me to it. That woman still stood in the shelter, silent. Either that or she went for her bus, either way, she didn’t do what she said “yes” to.

That’s not the first time I’ve seen that. What is with that? Do people tell people who can’t speak the language, “If you don’t understand, just say yes, and they’ll go away.” What a stupid thing to learn! I was in Quebec in a part where the only English spoken was spoken by others who have come to learn French as they said goodbye to their parents…well, in theory. All the people who lived there spoke French. And never once when I didn’t understand what was being said, did I respond with, “Oui.” It just doesn’t make sense. It’s actually kindda scary. You don’t know what you’re saying yes to, maybe it was, “Do you want to go home?” “Do you think Quebec should leave Canada?” “Did you speak English while you were here even though you weren’t supposed to?” Why say yes? Say Pardon. Say I don’t know. Anything but yes!

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