¿Usted habla inglés?

Sometimes you just crave Taco Bell. Some people, like me, crave it all the time. Some people also love the fact that we live in a time when you can drive up to a restaurant, order what you want and retreat to your own home to eat your Ranchero Chicken Soft Taco’s while watching TV or playing City of Heroes.

Tonight was one of those nights. Ben and I got in the car and headed to The Bell to get some dinner. At this Taco Bell they have a pretty crappy speaker so I was not able to hear when she read back the order to me. When we got to the window… well, this is where I start to pull my hair out.

Girl: That will be $XX.xx
Me: Can you read the order back to me?
Girl: Hold on.
*She closes the window and finishes taking an order*
*Opens the window*

Girl: $XX.xx
Me: Can you read back the order? I could not hear you through the speaker?
Girl: *looks baffeled* Hold on.
*We watch her talk to a few other workers while she continues to take orders*
*Now a guy walk up to the window*

Guy: What?
Me: Can you read the order back to me? I could not hear her through the speaker.
Guy: Okay. *closes wondow*
*Says something to girl, walks away*
*Thinks to self: Jesus Christ can I just get my fucking food?!*
Girl: *Opens window, smiles looks confused* What you need?
Me: Can… You… Read… The… Order… Back… To… Me?
Girl: I don’t… *closes window*
MANAGER: Can I help you?
Me: *deep breath* Can you read the order back to me? I could not hear her through the speaker.
MANAGER: *read’s back order*

I am all for people being allowed to migrate to this counrty. As long as you come and go through the naturalization process, I fully support your decision to come to the best country in the world in search of a better life for yourself and your family.

But PLEASE, if you plan on working a job where you are required to work for 8 hours a day talking to and understanding what people are trying to convey to you BE ABLE TO SPEAK ENGLISH.

I understand that people who don’t live in the southern states or near borders or where poeple cross the ocean in little overcrowded boats you probably think that I’m a freak. But I live in California where this problem is something you run into every day.

I can assure you that if I moved to Mexico (or any foreign country for that matter) I would not take a job where I was required to interact with customers who could not understand what I am saying because of a language barrier.

And from now on, I will drive an extra few miles to go to another Taco Bell beacuse it should not take 15 minutes for you to hand me my taco’s.

6 thoughts on “¿Usted habla inglés?

  1. I feel you, it sucks when you have to say something 5 times before someone understands. I took 2 years of Spanish in Jr. High and 3 years in High School but I have forgotten a lot. It’s during these times that it’s great to have a husband who is fluent in Spanish and English. Anytime we go anywhere where the person speaks Spanish he speaks Spanish to them because we are sure to get the order right and we generally get better service. It’s not right but it’s the truth.

  2. I wasn’t goiong to say anything about this because it is one of those things that gets me all workedup, but…that is no fun at all.

    I am a first generation American, my mo cam over from the Portuguese islands when she was six and learned english before going to school, so she was basically homeschooled her first half a year here (they came in Nov.) and then started first grade as an English speaker. She taught my grandparents, and later, my great-grandma when she came over. The schools even went so far as to make her go through speech therapy to get rid of her accent. Now, I think the speech therapy is going a little far, but, geeze. TShe learned English. All my family that has come over since has learned English because that is what you do. When I went back ti the Acores, I spoke portuguese. When in Rome, or something. I just think it’s a whole lot of arrogance andnot a whole lot of…respect, maybe? I dunno, but it’s frustrating as hell. Just give me my goddamn tacos!

  3. I suppose I could have rephrased the question but I don’t think she’d have understood that any more than what I had asked.

    And, that doesn’t change my rant at all.

    I have actually gotten hate email from this post. My first hate email. I feel so special.

  4. hate e-mail? hahaha very gay! I’m going to send you some hate email now! I am getting very frustrated trying to find a job because everyone REQUIRES that you speak english and spanish! WTF is that about? I applied for a City job and there they don’t require it but if you are bilingual you get paid more!argh!:screwy:

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