Local slang and other expressions can make life difficult for visitors who don't fully understand the language of the place they're visiting. In this question from the July 2012 issue, in advance of the World Choir Games, Dr. Know plants his tongue firmly in his cheek and points out some helpful phrases for those visiting Cincinnati.
I’m hosting international guests during the World Choir Games. It is my understanding that they will have basic English skills, but I’d like to be ready to teach them “localisms” and key phrases that will make their stay in Cincinnati more pleasant. Any suggestions?—Ready to HelpDear Ready:Of course. Here are a few: “You freaking moron! You’re supposed to come to a complete stop before turning right on red! You nearly killed me!”“I may be [Latvian . . . Bulgarian. . . . Hmong . . . Ainu . . . Luxembourgeois . . . Whatever] but I’m not deaf, so please talk slower, not louder.”“Yes, with all these hills, Cincinnati looks exactly like Rome. Eerie!”“Oh! Pizza that comes from a telephone! Yummy.”“I’m sorry, nobody advised me of the need to buy health insurance.” (Or alternatively—“Please explain what do you mean by health insurance?”)“In my country we think bicycle helmets are for Smurfs.”
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