Protect and Defend

Welcome to my blog, Protect and Defend. You don’t have to understand me. You only have to agree with me. I can live with losing the good fight, but I can not live with not fighting that good fight at all. - Publius

Thursday, June 22, 2006

National Language

I was in 7-11 today. I stopped in for gas and some Skoal, yes I do like to dip. Now, I am use to going into 7-11 or any convenience store around here anymore and having to tell the person behind the counter what I want, and then point to it behind the register and they walk back there and I have to motion them left or right until they get to what I am asking for, which is why I typically go to the same place because they know me now and know what I am asking for.
Two weeks ago I went into a Texaco and did the same thing, I asked for a “Can of Apple Skoal, please,” and the man behind the register reached for the Red Man, so I pointed higher, he grabbed a blue can, I told him green, he grabbed an orange can, I told him again green, he reached for a purple can, and I told him again green and pointed to something on his counter that was the same color. Now this was not a big deal and I was in no real hurry so I just paid for my can and left.
But, today I was in my usual 7-11 and was in one line to check out when a woman came in and asked the man behind the counter if he knew were a particular business was, his response was a smile and “I no speak English.” I had noticed the woman outside prior to this go up to a couple of guys who I had heard speaking Spanish before walking in and she was rebuffed there as well. I don’t know if this was because they also couldn’t speak English or if they did not know where the place was. The woman then turned to the man who was getting my Skoal and asked him, he smiled and said, “Sorry no English.” The woman turned to me in a bit of frustration and asked me. Now, I am far from the Good Samaritan but I wanted to help. I did not know where the business was she was going and I did not recognize the street either, although I could tell from the zip code that she was not too far off. She thanked me and said she would try to go to another gas station and try to get help there. Luckily I noticed a rack by the door of local maps and we were able to look up the street, and although it was about two miles from where we were I was able to help her and gave her some easy directions.

But, I can’t help but wonder what would have happened if she was looking for something at night and I had not been there in 7-11. I didn’t stop to think about whether the two men who were working in 7-11 who were of Middle Eastern or Indian descent were legal or not, or whether the guys outside speaking Spanish were legal or now. But, I did stop to think about those who argue against making people learn English and I wondered what this woman would have done had I not been there.


Blogger betmo said...

perhaps she should have used mapquest.

Fri Jun 23, 09:19:00 AM  
Blogger quakerdave said...

It was a message from your Higher Power:

"Quit the snuff. Quit the snuff."

We like you better well and alive, dude. That stuff is nasty!

Fri Jun 23, 11:53:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey DUde, I'll tell you what, the clerk not being able to figure out what can of dip you wanted had nothing to do with his level or lack thereof understanding. None of those clerks can ever find the right can. I stood behind a guy one time who had to all but go behind the counter himself to show them which can. I was jumping out of my skin wanting to direct the clerk...I mean, how hard is it to look for the word SKOAL? You're gonna get mouth cancer and then be featured on the news because they had to transplant half of your face with the face of some illegal.

Fri Jun 23, 12:15:00 PM  
Blogger Publius said...

Betmo, yeah she probably should have used mapqwest or Google maps, but this was actually like an access road and I don’t know that even with mapqwest how easy she would have found it.

QD, I would quit, but I do enjoy it so.

And anon, so not true. In central Virginia, Northern North Carolina, Northern Georgia, and middle South Carolina where I have bought it before they had no trouble. But if you want to know what is really hard, I was at JFK airport about 8 years ago and I was trying to explain to the guy behind the counter what dip actually was and if he had any. Turns out Skoal is not a popular seller at JFK. And most people get some form of mouth disease or bad gums long before they get mouth cancer.

Fri Jun 23, 12:42:00 PM  

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