Thursday, December 18, 2008

You Know I don't Speak Spanish

But I wish I did. Knowing it would have been pretty handy in knowing how to say "What city are you from?" "What is your ethnicity?" "Are you a U.S. citizen?" and "Is this your name?" today. Why was I asking such personal questions today? Well dear reader, The Underling was required to move amongst the working people today at Parcel 18 (the new NU dorm project).

We interrupt this post for an important side note!

Because I was moving floor to floor today I got to take a look at the new digs for the incoming Freshman, which were; a decent size single room with a private bath, a sizable closet and sink outside the shower/toilet area. I thought Freshman were supposed to be tortured their first year to then appreciate the quality of life from there on out, I know I was. Then again $5,000 a semester for those rooms might just be worse than torture.

Back our regularly scheduled program!

I was also forced to take the talking elevator (announces each floor) which was operated by an elevator operator who had decorated his tiny workspace with christmas lights and decorations.

I just spilled hot apple cider all over myself and the couch (the couch's first spill mind you) which means I will be finishing this post without any pants on. Just thought you should be aware that the first half of this post was written by a fully clothed Underling, the second half a pantless one. You decide which Underling you like better.

After this festive elevator ride came the point where I wish I knew Spanish. I was to determine where a group of floorers were from, and with the names "Mendozza, Romero, and Santos" I was convinced they were probably Latino and not Caucasian like their payroll department keeps telling me they are. I, of course was right, they were not white. Of course I could not verbally confirm this because none of them spoke English. That and their foreman was a Polish man who did not speak Spanish and only a heavily accented version of English (how they got work done is beyond me).

How would have me knowing Spanish helped me you ask? It wouldn't have, it would have been cool though. All I really needed to know was that these guys were Latino and that is fairly easy to determine when they all are a different shade than white and only speak Spanish (go instincts!).

Regardless of the usefulness of Spanish in todays situation I wish I had known it just to make sure they were not saying rude things about me. I mean I work for the government, so they probably don't like me much especially when I don't know Spanish, pull them off their work site, and bring into question their legal status. I know I would hate me.

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