Introducing Culture Through Language
A Ukrainian who moved to Norway is taking free language classes for immigrants and just posted a text in Norwegian that appears in the beginner’s language textbook. The Ukrainian Facebook is peeing itself with laughter and I just have to share:
“I wake up at 6 am. I feel exhausted and sleepy. I want coffee. I drink 3 cups and it helps a little. I must have breakfast but I don’t feel like eating. Then I go to work. My bus arrives at 7 am.”
I had the same bout of hysterical laughter as when I read the following dialogue in a Russian textbook:
“- Mom, would you like coffee or tea? – It’s OK, son, I don’t need anything. Eat and don’t mind your old mama. – Mom, seriously, what can I order for you? Coffee? A piece of cake? A fruit salad? – I’m fine, son. Just get me a glass of milk and a raisin bun. – Here they are, mom! – They are for you, son! I’m happy when I see you eat!”
When you show this textbook page to literally any Russian speaker, they immediately complete the dialogue with, “Why aren’t you eating? Don’t you love your mama at all? I knew you hated me!” It’s a cultural thing.