Say what???

I spent a lot of time in Korea grading mind boggling sentences like the one above. Most of the time they weren’t funny and I was left to find a way to turn them into intelligible statements. But sometimes there were real gems that would make me and the whole teachers’ room explode in laughter.

Disclaimer: I know it isn’t easy learning a second language and I applaud all of my students for trying their best. I laugh at these from a good place not a mean one. I know that I sure as hell have made people laugh quite a bit while traveling and attempting to speak foreign languages. I wonder what incredible things my Spanish teachers from middle school heard me say. I’ve been laughed at around the world for my silly attempts to communicate, and the ridiculous pantomimes that go with it. I don’t take any of this too seriously and I hope you don’t either 🙂

With that said, here is a countdown of my all time favorites:

#10 “Long ago a dinosaur quarrel A dinosaur 1 and diosaur 2 quarrel. but a dinosaur 1 was clear as dinosaur 2 and a dinosaur 2 was won.” One of the many confusing sentences I had to correct. At the end of the year I stopped trying to decipher them. I learned to appreciate their hilarity and just write a big question mark next to them. At least this student seemed to understand the word quarrel!

#9 “USA do on Statue of Liberty and cowboy and Los Angeles and good food is Kentucky, meat, chicken.” Can you get more American? The Statue of Liberty, a cowboy, Los Angeles and of course, it’s not the USA without Kentucky meat chicken!

#8 “I leaned on my mom because I am tired of trousers.” Haven’t we all been there?

#7 “Can you drive a spaceshit?” Ah yes, the t and p confusion. It can really make a huge difference when accidentally interchanged.

#6 “Q:Can you see that airplane? A: No it’s behind my ass.” …this just goes to show that asses are getting bigger all over the world, not just in our US of A.

#5 “When you see cobra don’t be afraid. Swing the arm and go slowly, slowly, slowily, to cobra. catch the cobra’s face. Throw the cobra into the water.” I hope this student never encounters a cobra! I love reading this quote because I can picture this student emphatically saying every verb and explaining what you need to do to his classmates.

#4 “My favorite zoo animal is a shrars because it is cunt.” Jenny actually wanted to say: My favorite zoo animal is a squirrel because it is cute. At the end she said: “but a shrars isn’t a zoo animal.” WTF Jenny?  [This is word for word what I had in my journal. Clearly I was tired of grading her assignments which usually consisted of made up words.]

#3 “Q:How can you tell if there is sugar in the lemonade? A: Because it doesn’t have legs or wings.” I asked this on a science test one month when we were learning about solutions and mixtures. I’m not sure this student got much out of the class, but I appreciate the creativity and the correct grammar.

#2 “Erosion can happen when a cat is happy.” Another lost student in science class with even funnier results.

#1 “Do you like monkey or horse? I like monkey the horse.” A very creative answer to the question they created.

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