Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Fringe benefits

I’m really more of a work-to-live person than a live-to-work person, which is not to say that I don’t like to be productive, because I do. I feel good after a successful, busy day at work. But if I won the lottery today, I would not keep my job -- at least not after a month’s notice.

That being said, I’ve been noticing lately that I learn all sorts of miscellaneous things during my days in the office.

I swear I can almost read German. The trick is you have to read the words out loud with a German-type accent.

Go on, try it:

Dies ist eine automatisch erstellte Benachrichtigung über den Zustellstatus.
Übermittlung an folgende Empfänger fehlgeschlagen.

You have to admit that you know exactly what the first four words say. Right? The rest you can learn by looking at its English counter-part:

This is an automatically generated Delivery Status Notification.
Delivery to the following recipients failed.

I think I’m going to say fehlgeschlagen in place of failed from now on. It’s so much more fun to say, isn’t it?

This week I ran into a problem when trying to renew one of our subscriber’s accounts. His card was repeatedly declined due to:

… an address or ZIP code mismatch with the address on file with the card issuing bank...

I contacted the subscriber and it turns out that his home does not have a house number, it has only a name. In this case, “Lilybank.” How quaint is that?

I would like a house with a name, wouldn’t you?

I’ve also learned that “cheers” really is a common salutation in Australia (even among physicians), Spaniards like to order things via subscription agencies even though they could subscribe themselves in 5 minutes online, and some people will continue to speak to you in a language you don’t understand somehow hoping that if they repeat the words louder and louder you’ll have a breakthrough. (Well maybe if it were German!)



NucMEd is Hot said...

if i can figure it out out using the german version of failed from now on too!

Me, You, or Ellie said...

I email with someone regularly who always signs off: "cheers". I like it. Makes me think of drinking.


Me, You, or Ellie said...

Weirdly, I think it's Prosit.

I love this Beth. I worked in the international realm for years and years. I can't get enough of peeps talking to me in foreign tongues. Great listening practice. If you don't know what they're saying? Just nod and smile. And look cute. Always worked for me.


andrea said...

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.



Me, You, or Ellie said...

Welcome to the party, Andrea!


Me, You, or Ellie said...

Make that Andrea/Margaret