Wednesday, February 15, 2006

What's the German Word for "Smooth"?

We received a last-minute visit from two Germans from our parent company today. The Boss told me they were important so I should make sure everything looked in order. When they arrived, I wanted to impress them (pride see Deadly Sins). So I stood up and welcomed them in German. Then, I wanted to ask them in German if I could take their coats, "Darf ich bitte Ihreren Mantels nehmen?"

I got as far as "Darf ich bit-waaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhh!" There was a cable loose under my desk and as I stepped around to shake their hands, my heel got caught and I went flying. Seeing as how they were emotionally responsive empathetic German men, they just stood there and looked at me. "Okay, it's okay. Es gab einen Kabel...." Nevermind. I decided to persevere. I took their coats and showed them into the conference room.

"Moechten Sie etwas zum trinken?" I asked. "Ich habe Mineralwasser, Stillewasser, Cola..." The men asked for water. "Stille oder Mineral?" I asked. We have both carbonated and non-carbonated water.

"Sprudel," said one of the big shots. Um, I asked Stille oder Mineral, what the hell is this Sprudel crap?

"Stille?" I asked.

"Sprudel," he said and I swear he nodded his head. So I brought in two bottles of regular American water. The two guys looked at each other.

I went to the back room to consult FrauFoxtrot who was actually involved in relevent work. I told her I asked out German visitors if they wanted plain or carbonated water. "What the hell does "sprudel" mean?"

"Sparkling, " said FrauFoxtrot. "He wanted the sparkling."

"Oh holy shit, I gave them the wrong water. Can I do one thing right?"

"Well, you can probably go back in and give them the correct water now."

"No, forget it!" I said, having a temper tantrum. "Stupid Germans. They are getting nothing from me!" I tell this story only to illustrate the professionalism I bring to my job. Then I asked G4 if we could slip out for lunch while they were still in the meeting so I wouldn't have to face my own Watergate.

Tomorrow is G4's last day. He has been here for six and a half weeks. I will be sad to see him go. He is very sweet and funny.


MCMCMCLY said...

Cups, I have your SW corner photo online now at PoE. Actually, you have two of them for some reason. Very charming. Come visit me.

Cupcake said...

PatDav- I do not look charming in those photos, I look fat. Well, my hair looks cute, but I look fat. Which is why no link from this blog to those photos will evern exist. Oh God.