20 March 2006

Thanks for calling, how may I help you?

I'm more espanol than I realized. Last week I tried to call and change our address on our credit card. The names and words rolled off my tongue and bounced off of the American operator. Strange words, too many cities, too many numbers in my phone number. None of it was natural to her. Strangely it is my daily life and I don't think twice about it. I suddenly saw the strangeness of it all through her eyes. Calle (cawyay in espanol) became cali (with a long e)... etc. I didn't know that it sounds so normal to me in Spanish. I even hesistate to use "Spanish" or Espanol now because the language is always referred to as castellano. I find it interesting that the differences become more apparent when held up to the American-ness of home.

Another interesting point, I as a spouse was not allowed to change the address on the primary card holders card only on my individual card, thus the statements would still go to the wrong address. Dar had to call himself.


  1. Glad to hear that Spanish has become almost natural to you now.

    Credit card companies are real sticklers when it comes to that sort of thing.

  2. There are actually laws that govern who can do what with a Credit card acount .. more specifically, what the credit issuer can do at the request of a secondary cardholder (i.e. spouse). The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, and my favorite, and the Grahm Leech Bliely Consumer Information Protection act .... not to mention the Patriot Act .... etc. etc. etc.

    Sometimes we stupid things because someone makes us.

    It's also rather common for Mrs. so-n-so to change the billing address on the card so mr. so-n-so dosen't find out she's leaving him / spending his christmas bonus / financing a "struggling pool-boy" etc.

  3. In my everyday work I talk with people from all over the world. I have to have almost everyone repeat at least a part of what they said.

    Glad to know I am not the only one. :)

  4. Dust, I have to ask people to repeat themselves when I am calling the City of Kansas City to get a building permit.

    European telephone number and address always seem unatural to me. Like I don't trust it. Is that the right order, etc.

  5. Yeah, dash always loves it when I say "You'll have to call...." BTW, Dash and I had a conversation in piglatin (the kids haven't figured it out yet...or so they say :)) Yesterday. I went to call my dad and almost said, "eway iedlay itay isay owingsnay erehay!" utbay Iay idn'tday! I caught myself just in time!

  6. Sometimes I feel like I'm speaking something like pig latin instead of spanish when the Spanish speaker gets the confused, huh? face. I forget how pig latin works! I think I forget how English works too...