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Wednesday, April 05, 2006

The morning was moving slow at the big gay front desk. So, I decided to run up some paperwork to another doctor's office on one of the higher floors. I work in a rather tall building to San Francisco standards.

There was a loud conversation going on in the elevator as I walked in. Two cute men. One tall, lanky and about as white as a person can get. The other was short, curved and Asian. The tall guy was gesturing with his hands and essentially yelling at his friend --- who stood sort of smiling and nodding his head. There was a look of panic and confusion in the eyes of the short man.

As soon as I got back to my desk I pulled out my handy Hello Kitty memo pad and recorded what I had heard --- and, what had happened. This was definitely a case of a language barrier on the rise.

"...I am trying to tell you that it is just hard for me! Do you understand what I am saying?!?!?!?"

Short man just looks confused but sort of happy. He nods.

"Look. Try not to take it so badly. It is just it has been a long time since I shared my home and bed with anyone. I am really into you but it is just odd to have a warm body holding on to mine after so many years of being alone!"

Short man nods. I try not to look at them, but it is hard to not watch this odd situation unfold to my right as we go up and up. The tall man is really yelling now.


"You want me go bye now?" ...the short man looks so worried and afraid.

OK, I am watching them now. I can't seem to help it.


The elevator stops and a nurse joins us on our ride. There is a repeat of the conversation again but louder. The nurse is watching even more obviously than me.

"Excuse me," she interrupts this comical conversation. "But, you know, yelling is not going to help him understand you."


The elevator stops. The nurse rushes out. I think about rushing out with her, but it was just too damn interesting.

"Hey," Oh shit. The tall guy is speaking to me.

"Do you speak Chinese?"

"I think you mean mandarin or Cantonese, but no. I can only barely speak English."

The elevator stops. The doors open. I am at my floor of destination.

"Yeah. Me too. It is so fucking difficult when you can't speak the same language as your lover!"

"Yeah. That must be tough."

I step out of the elevator and wonder if the tall guy will ever get the short guy to understand the intimacy issue. Conversations on an elevator. Who knew??!??


Blogger ing said...

The language of love. It doesn't tell all, does it? But y'know, I find these encounters with men whose native language is English 100% confusing when the possibility of love comes into play. I can't imagine, then, having the double barrier of linguistic misunderstanding.

10:02 PM  
Blogger ing said...


Pssst, I said skunk!

10:02 PM  
Blogger matty said...

LOL! Yes! Skunk!!!!

Hey, I just saw the thing that Dessie was saying about my new picture -- it blended into my comments section. ...but I kinda like it. LOL!

...obviously their connection was not based on intellect.

10:05 PM  
Blogger ing said...

I'll have what they're having. I mean, in the interim.

10:24 PM  
Blogger Robert said...

Yeah, yelling just won't do, it's not like the guy was hard of hearing! I should get this shirt for that Asian man. I have one! :-)


7:17 AM  
Blogger Karyn said...

This reminds me of a thing I saw on TBS... this guy walks around dumpster picking , picks up scraps of paper off the street etc., and compiles all the random notes and stolen bits of writing and makes a magazine from them. You could so totally do that! (PS: The language barrier is only one problem; plenty of people speak the same damn language and still can't manage to sort it out -)

8:40 AM  
Blogger crabcake said...

LOL! I have never had an interesting elevator ride. Ever.

This was priceless.

I like your new pic!

3:35 PM  
Blogger snarl71 said...

Damn - communicating in a relationship is nearly impossible when you speak the same language (I know from experience).

A language barrier must complicate things exponentially!

7:22 PM  
Blogger ing said...

Where are you? I'm bored! My room is 80% clean, that's how bored I am. Did Milford make you pick another card tonight?

10:16 PM  
Blogger matty said...

Karyn -- Is that the creator of LOST & FOUND?? Neat-o!

Robert -- LOL!

Crabcake -- I don't know. I seem to just walk into "oddness" ...Seems like it has been that way all my life. Not sure that one can call it interesting, but it ain't dull. LOL!

Karl -- yep!

Ing! I'm here! ...well, I didn't get home till about 8:30. But, I'm here now and about to go to bed! Milly canceled on me! But, it turned out to be a long evening at work. I will have to tell you about it later! LOL! 80% clean! Wow, Ingrid! You're almost there! You weren't working tonight?!?!?

10:52 PM  
Blogger Topher said...

I think it was the Found Magazine that Karyn might be talking about. Withh this one though, people send it stuff they actually find, well I hope not in the dumpster!!

2:24 AM  

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