Saturday, April 16, 2005

Ayzeh Mehdeenah (6) - Manners

Years ago I read this anecdote in an AACI newletter, and it stayed with me.

After a few years' patronizing the same bank, I became friendly enough with the bank teller for her to ask me:

Bank Teller: "Why do you Americans think we're rude? What do we do that makes you think that?"

I paused, knowing she was sincere, and I didn't want to insult her or hurt her feelings.

Me: "Well, for example, here you are, working directly with the public, while drinking tea and eating a cucumber at the same time."

The teller looked mystified, then she looked at me quizzically, and asked, "Well what should I be eating?"

1 comment:

elswhere said...

On one of my visits to Israel I was going over my meager Hebrew vocabulary with someone, bragging that I could ask how much something cost, and that even this early in my visit I automatically said "S'licha" instead of "excuse me" when brushing past someone on the bus.

She laughed and said, "But if you say 's'licha,' they'll just know you're American!"