Monday, August 16, 2010

El Día de Vergüenza

The Day of Embarrassment (new holiday I’ve created in celebration of myself)

Fun, masochistic anecdote:

(Friday, August 13th)

While at lunch with Zoë and Gwen yesterday, I got “trapped” in the bathroom. The door was latched shut from the inside and I couldn’t for the life of me undo the latch. I began to panic, imagining myself running out of oxygen in the tiny, airtight stall while a man with a chainsaw was being summoned to cut a giant me-shaped hole in the door (does this remind anyone else of a certain Japanese game show? Okay). My next panicked thought was, will I be able to communicate the urgency of my situation in Spanish?! I began to bang on the door. No response. I shouted, “HOLA! ESTOY CERRADA EN EL BAÑO!” which is technically correct, although mildly ridiculous. Zoë and the waitress came to my rescue. Apparently I was just using the lock incorrectly. Ay, Dios.

The rest of the day didn’t end up being as embarrassing as it could have, but I did say I had studied Spanish since I was fourty when I meant fourteen, which of course is HILARIOUS because “cuarenta” and “catorce” are SO DIFFERENT, unlike in our stupid language in which the simple omission of an “n” could lead to mix-ups. Geez Louise.

Don’t mind the negativity that’s unpleasantly seeping through here! I just want to be fluent NOW. I’d probably have to sell my soul for that to happen, though.


  1. Oh noooo, that has definitely happened to me. Nothing where I've actually gotten stuck irreparably (obviously, since I'm not currently in a bathroom), but times where I've been stuck and momentarily totally terrified.

  2. I´m glad you can relate, pally-o! But also glad you escaped.

  3. I thought I was trapped in the basement of my building yesterday while looking for the laundry room. I couldn't turn the handle and the separate lock/latch didn't do a thing. After briefly fearing the worst, I soon figured out I could just walk to the other end of the corridor to a friendly door that lead to the outside. Many of the doors in Sweden, or maybe just the ones at Uppsala University, have tricky locks and latches that can make for embarrassing entrances and exits.

    Anyway, I enjoy reading about your adventures, and I am sure your Spanish skills are improving at lightning speed compared to my Swedish. Here's to study abroad and all of the clumsiness and language goofs!