Friday, 21 July 2017

An Idiot's List of Reasons to Learn Lingua Franca

In case you don't know, lingua franca is a language of international communication. Now that you are enlightened on some Italian, let's head over to English which is indeed lingua franca of the modern world.

So, you should learn English because you will be able to:

- enjoy movies starring Arnold Schwarzenegger in the original and secretly feel superior because your English accent is much better than his;

- speak to waiters when you are on holiday abroad. If they don't reply in fluent English, complain about the poor service and don't leave a tip. Note: don't try it in Amsterdam, as they all speak English there and if you piss them off they will run you over on a bike;

- write comments online in English and express your views to a much broader audience on a wide variety of issues that bother you. These issues include but are not limited to stupid government, inefficient transport system, the weather, irresponsible dog owners, spoilt kids in restaurants and your in-laws;

- enrich your online shopping experience buying stuff you don't need from all over the world. And then (ahead of all your friends who don't speak English) master the newest system of getting rid of the stuff you don't need, the system so new, they haven't yet translated the book sharing this wisdom into your native language;

- rub your boss' nose in a grammar mistake in his email in English to the company’s foreign partners. Make sure you demand promotion on the grounds of being bilingual and having excellent attention to detail;

- write a letter to the Queen of England and ask her to adopt you as one of her loyal dogs. Don't forget to say ‘please’;

- fearlessly write graffiti on walls in two languages and once caught, explain with dignity that it’s language practice not vandalism;

- authentically shout ‘Taxi’ in New York like they do in the movies. Not that it will help you get one at a busy hour;

- understand all those pop songs in English, cringe and stop listening to this shite;

- watch millions of YouTube videos teaching you how to iron your shirts, socks and undergarments correctly;

- do your kids’ homework in English and let the poor children rest instead. After all kids should relax at home, not do stupid homework;

- tell if someone calls you names in English and reciprocate quickly and decisively;

- casually remark to the hospitality staff at the hotel you are staying at, that your negative review on Trip Advisor will be in English for the whole world to know that the croissants for breakfast were stale on 3 July and the water in the outdoor pool was uncomfortably cold for you after sunbathing.

If you focus on the British English you will inevitably adopt some of the ladies & gentlemen culture and

- offer your apologies on all sorts of possible occasions: if you burp, if someone else burps, if you behaved like an idiot, if someone else behaved like an idiot and you saw it, if you pushed someone accidentally, if someone pushed you accidentally and also just in case so that people around don't think you are being rude;

- once addressed by complete strangers, elaborate on weather predicaments of all sorts for half an hour in a row. And know a hundred and one expressions to describe rain;

- stay calm and carry on being polite even if someone punches you in your stiff upper lip.

If you think that the above reasons are not convincing enough, you should learn English because

- it's the language spoken by prince Harry. A bachelor. Yet.

And of course because

- this post is written in English. In case you didn't notice.

Happy learning!

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