A man with an English accent has asked his native land how he could say “English” and “French” when speaking with other people in French.
According to the New York Times, the man, who wished to remain anonymous, spoke French to his host, a French-speaking woman, on a plane from London to Paris last week.
He explained to the host that he did not want to speak French.
But he said he was in the process of learning English.
The French host then asked if he wanted to start a conversation, and he agreed.
When the two began talking, the English-speaking host exclaimed, “You must be in France.”
The man then asked, “I am in France.
I am in England.”
The host responded, “That is right, it’s not a question.
English is English.”
The host explained, “We are speaking French.”
The man replied, “Yes, I’m French.”
The English-French host then inquired if the English speaker wanted to finish the conversation.
The man, now clearly a French speaker, said, “No, I want to start it over.”
The woman, who had not been asked to speak a language other than English, said she was not surprised to hear this from a native speaker.
“He’s just so arrogant.
I was speaking English,” she said.
She said that the host could have asked a question like, “What is the correct pronunciation of English?
Is it ‘English’ or ‘French?’ or is it ‘French’ or is there a different pronunciation?
But the host ignored these questions.”
What’s so funny is, they don’t really have a language of their own.
They just speak English to the world,” she added.
She continued, “There is nothing more insulting to a native English speaker than when someone in a foreign language is using the English language in the way he does.”
The BBC interviewed a number of native English speakers who said that while they did not speak French, they had never encountered a host who had the audacity to ask a native to repeat a foreign word.
“You know, I don’t even know the words. “
I do not know how to say ‘goodbye’ in French,” she replied.
“You know, I don’t even know the words.
I just know that they say ‘thank you.'”
A French man in his 30s, who did not wish to be named, told the BBC that he was a native of the United Kingdom and had never spoken French.
“If you are French and you are in the UK and you want to go out and buy a book or something, you would ask me what is the French version of the word ‘pig’,” he said.
“But if I say, ‘French,’ you would not say, I am not sure.
It is a question that is totally arbitrary.”
A BBC correspondent asked the French woman what she thought of the host who was using English in a way that made her uncomfortable.
She replied, saying, “It’s insulting to the people who are speaking English, it is insulting to those who are learning English and not native English.”
A French woman told the journalist that she had learned French while working in Paris, and was used to English in that city.
“French people don’t speak English very well,” she explained.
“They are not good at using English to speak.
I learned French when I was in Paris and I was used the language.
But I think it is a little insulting.
You know, it does not sound like English, does it?
It is very strange.”