Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage . . . They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion.
~Psalm 84:5

Thursday, July 22, 2004

What do you hear at work?

Here's a bit of the conversations I hear/engage in:

Scene: The Hostel; resident cleaning up after tea (dinner, for all you Americans), while staff sits in lounge playing Scrabble w/ other residents. 

Laughter heard from kitchen.
Unknown resident:  Uh, is it okay that Andy is throwing dishes out the window?
Sarah (staff member):  What?!  Why is he doing that?
Resident:  Because he can't get them clean . . .

Later, after Scrabble game . . .
Sarah: Hey Andy, do I need to go outside and get the rest of the dishes you threw out the window, or did you already get them all?

Scene:  The Night Shelter; American Girl and Resident Boy sitting at table after tea.
Boy: So, are you Indian or something?
Am Girl: Mexican American, but I do have some Indian blood in me.
Boy: So, do you speak Mexican?
Am Girl: No, but I do speak some Spanish . . .

15 Minutes Later
Boy: So,  do you speak Inca?
Am Girl: (Mentally Thinking: No, you weirdo! and it's Aztec Indian in my blood, not Inca!)  (Actually says, slightly bewildered:) No, I don't . . .

10 Minutes Later
Boy: So, do you do basket weaving?
Am Girl: (mentally Thinking: What the -? No, do you try to be a racist bigot or does it just come naturally?)  (Actually says, with a chuckle:) No, I don't.
Boy: (And he's being serious, folks) Well, you should.  It's your culture.  That what's wrong with people these days.  They don't hold onto their culture.  They should all go back to where they came from . . .
Am Girl: Mentally blocks out boy because it's obvious he's a complete moron.

Scene:  The Night Shelter; 11:30 pm; all is quite as the residents start getting ready for bed.

Resident: Do you know how to make a rollup?
Am Girl: Excuse me?
Resident: Do you know how to roll a joint?
Am Girl: What? No. I mean, yes.  I mean, no.  I mean, I see you guys roll cigarettes every night. . . I think I can figure it out . . .
Resident: Right . . .
Am Girl: No, really!
Resident: Uh-huh . . . (walks out of kitchen into middle lounge) 
Disclaimer: Just for the record, the writer of this post has NEVER smoked a joint!

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