The Olde Yankee Grammarian—Elan Dresher Collateral Descendant of Lingua Pranca Contents <i>Collateral Descendant of Lingua Pranca</i>—Style Sheet and Submission Guidelines—Eddy Turr

False Friends

Episode: “The One with All the Confusion”

by Trey Jones

(Fade in. Opening credits.)

Voiceover: New York City, one of the most polyglot cities in the world, is home to Tiffani—a differently-clued American 20-something who almost speaks 4 or 5 languages—and her group of multilingual friends and acquaintances. Together they work to make their way through life, dealing with the ups and downs of work, friendship, and love, even though at least half the time none of them have any idea what the others are saying.

(The scene: a ridiculously large penthouse apartment in New York City, expensively decorated in a style that only a 20-something would choose, but which no 20-something should be able to afford. Maximilian is sitting on the sofa reading. Tiffani is talking on the phone.)

Tiffani: So get the girls together, Eleanor, then swing by here, and we’ll all go shopping this afternoon. It’ll be great! Kthxbye! (hangs up) Maximilian, I’m going to go shopping with the girls this afternoon.
Maximilian: Sehr gut.
Tiffani: Oh, this pile of laundry is still here. No one will claim it and wash it! Ooh, it drives me crazy!

(The doorbell rings. Tiffani runs to open it, revealing Vilchjo, the new Esperanto-speaking neighbor from down the hall.)

Tiffani: Hi!
Vilchjo: Saluton! Mi nomiĝas Vilchjo. Kiel vi fartas?1
Tiffani: Ewww. (she slams the door shut)
Maximilian: (looking up, surprised) Wer war das?
Tiffani: That creepy Esperanto-speaking guy. He was talking about farts, so I shut the door in his face.
Maximilian: Was?

(The door opens, and Pablo and Lucas enter.)

Pablo: (looking behind him out the door as it closes) ¿Quién es el hombre? ¿Cuál es su problema?
Tiffani: Ewww. Creepy Esperanto guy!

(Chuck and Nigel open the door to the apartment and enter, dressed in soccer uniforms.)

Pablo: ¿Cómo va el partido de fútbol?
Chuck: (with a very poor French accent) Nooz soamz laze champ-een-yohnz!
Nigel: (whispering to Chuck) You know Pablo was speaking Spanish, right?
Chuck: (whispering back) Yeah, but my Spanish isn’t nearly as good as my French!
Lucas: (looking quizzically at Pablo) Ils sont les champignons?2
Pablo: Sí.. él dijo que son champiñónes.3
Lucas: Je ne comprends pas.
Pablo: Ni yo tampoco. Gringos americanos son locos.
Chuck: (whispering to Nigel) See, Lucas explained it to him!
Chuck and Nigel: (exchange a glance, and begin singing) Weeee aaaaaare the chaaaampions! Weeee aaaaaare the chaaaampions! Nooo tiiime for loooooosers, ‘cuz weeee aaaaaare the Chaaaampions of the woooooooooorld!
Pablo and Lucas: Ahhhhhhhhhh...
Tiffani: Ewww. Smelly boys, go shower!

(Nigel and Chuck head across the hall to shower. A few moments later, the doorbell rings. Tiffani again runs to open it, again revealing Vilchjo, the new Esperanto-speaking neighbor from down the hall.)

Vilchjo: Mi bedaŭras! Sorry. I new in town and my English not so good.
Tiffani: Oh! Sorry! What can I do for you?
Vilchjo: I need help find.. um, how say?, dungo. 4
Tiffani: Ewww. (she slams the door shut)
Maximilian: (looking up again, surprised) Wer war das jetzt?
Tiffani: That creepy Esperanto-speaking guy again. Now he’s talking about poop. Yuck!
Maximilian: Was?!
Pablo: ¿Qué pasa?
Maximilian: Ich weiß es wirklich nicht.

(Chuck opens the door and enters, freshly showered, closing the door behind him.)

Chuck: Hey guys. Wassup? So, Maxxy, what’s shaking?
Maximilian: Ich möchte—
Chuck: Hey, wait, Maxxy. You know my Deutsch ain’t the best. Try to say it in English.
Maximilian: Okay. I’d like to become5 a new car.
Chuck: Never mind, you better stick to German.
Maximilian: Was nun?

(Nigel opens the door and enters, freshly showered, closing the door behind him.)

(The doorbell rings. Tiffani once again runs to open it, once again revealing Vilchjo, the new Esperanto-speaking neighbor from down the hall.)

Tiffani: Ewww. (she slams the door shut)

(Maximilian goes to the door and opens it, revealing a stunned Vilchjo.)

Maximilian: Hallo?
Vilchjo: Hello. My English not so good. Sorry. But I study so pretty lady not slam door. I need help find job.

(Tiffani overhears and comes to the door, abashed.)

Tiffani: I’m so sorry. I didn’t understand you. Let me make it up to you. Um.. I have a peach. (looks around for the peach, but can’t find it) Would you like my peach?
Vilchjo: Sorry. What you say?
Tiffani: Peach! Do you want my peach? (still looking for the peach, still not finding the peach) You know, “peach-o”?6

(Vilchjo, ashen-faced, slams the door in his own face and is heard to run away down the hall. A moment later the doorbell rings. Tiffani runs over to answer it again.)

Tiffani: (throwing the door open) Oh, Vilchjo, I’m so sorry!

(Eleanor, Louane, Hannah, and Gabriela are all standing there. Giovanni is behind them.)

Louane: Qui est Vilchjo?
Tiffani: Never mind. Let’s go shopping!

(All the girls squeal with excitement, then leave. Giovanni enters, closing the door.)

Nigel: Gentlemen, the ladies are out for the afternoon. We should make dinner for them!
Maximilian: Ja! Das ist eine gute Idee. Ich möchte aber zuerst eine Email schicken.
Pablo: Mmmm.. ¡Sí, a mi me gusta shicken!7
Chuck: No chicken, dude.
Giovanni: Ostriche?8
Chuck: Dude, we are not eating ostrich.
Giovanni: Perché no? Si tratta di un afrodisiaco!
Chuck: Ostrich is not a geodesic afro or whatever you said, man. Let’s make calzones instead, Giovanni!
Pablo: Conozco “ropa vieja”9, pero nunca “calzón”.10
Lucas: Nous avons besoin de pain11 aussi.
Nigel: No.. I think that would hurt. I have some gift chocolates I could share for dessert.
Maximilian: Schokolade mit Gift?12
Nigel: Yes, “gift”.
Maximilian: Nein, nein. Kein Gift!
Nigel: It’s okay. I don’t mind.
Maximilian: Du Dummkopf! Kein Gift!
Chuck: Okay, Max. Chill. No gifts. Whatever, dude.
Nigel: Sorry, Max old boy. How about nice white wine spritzers for the ladies, then? And maybe a plate of gourmet pickles?
Maximilian: Weißweinspritzen?13 Pickel?14 Igitt!
Nigel: Max, come now. What do you propose?
Maximilian: Also.. Ich habe Lust15 auf ein Ei.
Chuck: Yeah, Maxxy.. I’ve got some lust in my eye, too, for what comes after dinner! You old horn-dog.16
Maximilian: Der “Corn Dog” gefällt mir nicht!
Chuck: Whatever. Let’s just order pizza and get some beer. How about Big John’s?
Maximilian: Pizza wieder?
Nigel: No, they use too many preservatives in their food.
Pablo: ¿Preservativos17 en pizza? ¿Por qué?
Giovanni: Preservativos!?18
Nigel: Little James’s Pizza doesn’t use preservatives.
Giovanni: Piccolo Giacomo!
Maximilian: (sighs) Pizza wieder.
Pablo: Es muy mejor si no hay preservativos, pero pizza es aburrido.19
Chuck: Pizza is not a burrito, dude, it’s Italian pie, right Giovanni?
Giovanni: Sì!

(Fade to later that evening. There is pizza on the table. The door opens, and all the girls enter.)

Eleanor: Pizza? You shouldn’t have, boys.
Nigel: Yes, darling. Pizza!
Eleanor: No, really, you shouldn’t have Nigel. You shouldn’t have let them order pizza again!
Tiffani: Yuck. This pile of laundry is still here. Is anyone going to ever claim it and wash it?
Louane: Non.
Hannah: Nein.
Gabriela: No es lo mio.
Eleanor: Sorry, not mine, either.
Tiffani: Ugh!

(Fade out.)

(The scene: Central Flower Bed,20 a trendy-looking coffee shop featuring hyper-caffeinated drinks in coffee mugs big enough to hold a softball. For some reason, whenever Tiffani & Co. show up, the sofa and chairs around the central table are free.)

(Tiffani opens the door to enter Central Flower Bed, carrying a stuffed pink bunny rabbit. A little girl in a stroller is being pushed out of the café by her mother.)

Little girl in stroller: (looking at Tiffani’s bunny) Die! Die! Die!21
Tiffani: What!? Why? What did I do? Is it the bunny?
Little girl in stroller: (nodding) Die! Die! Die!
Tiffani: (on the verge of tears) Oh, you mean little girl!
Little girl in stroller: Die! Die! Die!

(The girl and her mother go out. Tiffani, looking sad and confused, shrugs and throws the pink bunny in the garbage. She goes in to join her friends. Eleanor, Nigel, Maximilian, Chuck, Pablo, Lucas, Giovanni, Sofia, Hannah, and Louane are already seated. Nigel starts talking as Tiffani sits down. Eleanor is wearing a ridiculously large hat with several knit flowers on it.)

Nigel: Hey everyone, Chuck and I were thinking of going gambling this weekend in Las Vegas. Any of you want to come?
Maximilian: “Gambling”? Was bedeutet das?
Chuck: You know, at a casino.
Maximilian: Ah, “Kasino”. Ja!
Pablo: ¡Sí!
Lucas: Moi aussi!
Giovanni: (looks around at Tiffani, Eleanor, Hannah, and Louane, who don’t seem to care much) Sì! Sì! Sì! Io andrò!22
Sofia: No! No puttane per ti!

(Giovanni looks sad. Chuck punches him gently in the shoulder.)

Chuck: Too bad, bro. Let me buy you another round to make you feel better.
Giovanni: Grazie.

(As Chuck and Giovanni get up, Nigel stands up, too.)

Nigel: I’ll keep you two company.

(Björn, one of a group of tall blond men seated at a nearby table, walks over to Eleanor.)

Björn: Hallå! Let me introduce myself. I am Björn, a Swede with two pricks.23
Eleanor: Two what?!
Björn: Two pricks, on the “o” in Björn.
Eleanor: Oh!
Björn: Yes, the “o”.
Eleanor: Oh.
Björn: I wanted to ask you a question. My friends and I cannot remember the mascot of the Philadelphia football team. Can you help?
Eleanor: Yes, I believe it is the eagle.

(Maximilian looks up suddenly from his book.)

Björn and Maximilian: (together, incredulous) Igel?24
Eleanor: Yes, I think so.
Björn: I will never understand America. Thank you, um..
Eleanor: I’m Eleanor.
Björn: Thank you, Eleanor.
Eleanor: Sure.

(Björn walks back to his friends as Nigel returns, looking askance at Björn.)

Nigel: Who was that, love?
Eleanor: Oh that? That was Björn, with two pricks!

(Nigel scowls in the direction of Björn’s retreating back.)

(Fade to an indeterminate time later, still in the café.)

(Nigel and Eleanor are sitting close together on the sofa.)

Eleanor: Nigel, how many tokens do you need to ride the subway out to Montana?
Nigel: I really don’t know, Eleanor. Why don’t you just take a cab? And why would you want to go to Montana anyway?
Eleanor: Oh never you mind. I see Balázs over there, I’ll ask him.
Nigel: You know your Hungarian isn’t that good.
Eleanor: Oh, pish posh.

(Eleanor walks over to Balázs, still wearing her ridiculously large hat with several knit flowers on it.)

Eleanor: Hi Balázs. I have a quick question. Do you know how many tokens you need to ride the subway all the way out to Montana?
Balázs: Igen! Meg kell hat.25
Eleanor: Why, yes, this is a lovely hat. My grandmother made it for me.

(Björn, who has been eavesdropping, hurries over.)

Björn: Hi Eleanor. I speak a little Hungarian. Maybe I can help.
Eleanor: Thank you, Björn. That’s very sweet.
Björn: He wasn’t talking about your hat. He says you just need sex.26
Eleanor: Excuse me?
Björn: He says sex is enough.
Eleanor: Balázs, you pervy jerk. (she slaps Balázs and storms off)
Björn: Åh förlåt, Balázs.

(Nigel scowls at Björn, who wanders back to his Swedish friends.)

(Fade to a while later, in the café. Eleanor is sitting alone. Björn limps up.)

Björn: Ahh, Eleanor, can you help me? I have hurt my, um, my, uh, min vrist.27
Eleanor: Why are you limping if you hurt your wrist?
Björn: I do not— Just help me to the sofa.
Eleanor: Hey, Björn, since you are here, can you help me out with a little trouble I’m having with Swedish?
Björn: I would love to!

(Fade to an indeterminate time later, still in the café. Tiffani approaches Hassan, the Arabic-speaking barista at Central Flower Bed, carrying a red coffee cup.)

Tiffani: Hi Hassan. My vanilla caramel latte just came to my table and it’s cold. Could you make me another one?
Hassan: Sure.

(Cut to a couple of minutes later, as Hassan is handing Tiffani an orange cup.)

Hassan: (obviously not happy) Here you are. Enjoy.
Tiffani: Hassan, this one has too much milk. Could you make me another one?

(Hassan grimaces, but takes back the cup. Cut to a few minutes later, Hassan is handing Tiffani a yellow cup.)

Tiffani: Too much vanilla!

(Cut to a few minutes later, Hassan is handing Tiffani a green cup.)

Tiffani: Too hot!

(Cut to a few minutes later, Hassan is handing Tiffani a blue cup.)

Tiffani: Too much caramel!

(Cut to a few minutes later, Hassan is handing Tiffani a purple cup.)

Tiffani: Too..
Hassan: (cutting her off) No! You drink that one.
Tiffani: But, but..
Hassan: Faqatˤ!28

(Hassan walks away from the counter and into the back room.)

Tiffani: Such language! Well, that was rude!

(Tiffani returns from the bar with her coffee. Nigel is standing in the long line that formed behind Tiffani, and Björn and Eleanor are looking at a magazine together on the sofa.)

Tiffani: Hassan is certainly in a foul-mouthed mood today.
Eleanor: (looking up at Tiffani) Oh, hi Tiffani! Guess what? Björn is helping me with a few words I can’t figure out in an article in this magazine, Svenska för Amerikaner, that I’ve been reading.
Björn: Ja!
Tiffani: Sounds great. You two have fun!

(Tiffani sits down with her Icelandic dictionary to study, but can’t help eavesdropping just a little on Björn and Eleanor.)

Björn: So, god means “good”.
Eleanor: Good. God.
Björn: Dog means “died”.
Eleanor: Dog. Died. Got it.
Björn: Stolen means “the chair”.
Eleanor: Chair. Stolen. Ok. Go on.
Björn: Hat means “hate”.
Eleanor: Hat. Hate. Great!

(Nigel returns, sees Eleanor with Björn and is obviously feeling a little jealous.)

Nigel: Well, hello, Björn. Fancy seeing you here again. What brings you here?
Tiffani: Oh, Nigel, it’s great. Björn is helping Eleanor with her Swedish article. It’s about some poor guy who hates his hat, had his chair stolen, and then his dog died! Good God!
Nigel: You know, Björn, you and your two pricks29 can just go home and leave Eleanor alone.
Eleanor: Are you jealous of Björn and his two pricks?
Nigel: No! Well, yes, maybe a little. We used to study languages together. You didn’t need a native speaker with two pricks before, just me.
Eleanor: It’s just an article in a magazine, Nigel. You are the only polyglot for me!

(Eleanor jumps up from her seat to hug Nigel. Tiffani breaks out in a big grin. Björn slinks away quietly, limping a bit, into the background.)

(It’s the next day, back at the café. Several of the group are sitting around the central coffee table, coffee mugs and various bilingual and trilingual dictionaries in hand. Tiffani walks up, with two other people in tow.)

Tiffani: Hey everyone, I’d like you to meet my friend from work, Giorgi. He’s from Georgia, the country, not the state. It took us forever to get that straight, didn’t it Giorgi?
Giorgi: (with a noticeable accent) Oh, yes!
Tiffani: And with him, visiting from the old country, is his— umm— (she points at an old man in his seventies with a thick beard)
Giorgi: My mama.30
Tiffani: His mama! (shudders, winces) They are off to see the Statue of Liberty!

(A Japanese tourist standing behind Giorgi looks up suddenly. Giorgi and his guest wave and leave the café.)

Tiffani: I don’t want to speak ill of anyone’s mother, but— (shudders and winces again)

(The Japanese tourist, complete with Bermuda shorts and very expensive and complicated digital camera with telescoping telephoto tele-lens, comes up to Tiffani and bows to her.)

Japanese tourist: すみませんが。 Can you terr me how to get to Statue of Riberty?
Tiffani: Hmm. It’s a bit hard, but if you just get a taxi, do you know “taxi”? (the tourist nods vigorously) Tell them “Statue of Riberty”, and you should get there no problem.
Japanese tourist: あなたは最高です!31
Tiffani: Hey, I’m not a psycho! I wasn’t making fun of your accent! I was trying to be helpful, dang it!

(The Japanese tourist nods and bows, smiling, and leaves the café. Tiffani runs towards the ladies’ room, crying a little.)

Eleanor: I’ll go make sure she’s okay. (follows Tiffani)

(Fade to a while later. Tiffani and Eleanor return.)

Tiffani: Hi guys, what’s up?
Nigel: Lucas was just telling us a story about the time he was visiting his uncle’s farm and a pig tried to steal his lunch. What happened next, Lucas?
Lucas: J’ai frappé le porc dans le groin.32

(All the English-speaking women within earshot giggle. All the English-speaking men grab their crotches and double over in sympathetic pain.)

Chuck: That’s harsh dude, even for a pig.

(Louane enters the café, with her arm in a sling. The strap of the sling crosses her chest, accentuating her ample bosom. Many of the men in the room take notice. Tiffani and Gabriela hurry over to Louane.)

Lucas: Mon dieu! Sacrebleu! Qu’est-ce qui s’est passé?
Tiffani: Louane, are you okay?
Gabriela: ¿Qué pasó, Louane?
Louane: Je me suis blessée33 au bras.34

(Cut to Björn, who is sulking and eavesdropping from a nearby table.)

Björn: (under his breath) Hon ser mycket bra35 ut!

(Hannah is walking up behind Chuck, but he doesn’t see her.)

Chuck: Oh, yeah, baby, I bless your bra, too. Every single day!
Hannah: (smacks Chuck in the back of the head) Du Blödmann!
Chuck: I was only looking, baby!

(Eleanor walks back over to Nigel and the other guys.)

Eleanor: Nigel, I’m feeling rather tired, so I think I’ll take Louane home and go to bed myself.
Louane: Merci.
Nigel: Oh, sorry to hear that. I was hoping to spend some time together this evening.
Eleanor: Well, we can do something fun tomorrow. Would you like to knock me up36 tomorrow morning?
Nigel: Sure thing, love. Sounds grand. In the morning, then!
Tiffani: Oh! (gasps and clasps her hand over her mouth)

(Tiffani hurries back to where Gabriela, Hannah, and Louane are sitting.)

Tiffani: Girls, I think Eleanor wants to have a baby with Nigel. She just asked him to knock her up.

(Eleanor, overhearing hurries over to their table.)

Eleanor: That’s not— I meant— Oh, I’m embarrassed.37
Gabriela: (whispering to Tiffani and Louane) ¡Demasiado tarde!
Eleanor: Louane, let’s just go home.

(Eleanor and Louane leave the café.)

Tiffani: (looking at Gabriela with concern) Are you okay, Gabs? You don’t look so great.
Gabriela: ¡Ay, no! Estoy constipada. ¡Me duele la cabeza!
Hannah: Bist du okay, Gabriela? Tiffani, ich verstehe kein Spanisch. Was hat sie gesagt?
Tiffani: I’m a little rusty, but she said she’s constipated38 and it’s dwelling39 in her head, I think.
Gabriela: ¡Ay de mí! Me voy a la casa y entoces a la cama. Buenas noches, chicas.
Tiffani: Now she wants nachos, I think.
Hannah: Ich hoffe, daß du dich besser fühlst, Gabriela. Tiffani, du verstehest kein Spanisch.

(Gabriela leaves.)

(Fade to the next day, back at the café. Nigel, Eleanor, João, Vitória, Pablo, Gabriela, Maximilian, and Tiffani are sitting around the central table.)

Hassan: (handing Eleanor a drink) Don’t any of you people have jobs?
Eleanor: (laughing) Thanks, Hassan!

(Hassan leaves.)

Nigel: So, everyone, Eleanor and I are going to a couple’s retreat this weekend.

(Vitória looks at João, clearly surprised. João shrugs, looking confused. They both look at Gabriela and Pablo, who also both shrug.)

João: Uma retrete?40
Eleanor: Yes! It’s going to be great! Does anyone else have plans for the weekend?
Maximilian: Ja. Ich will41 viel lesen.42
Tiffani: Yeah. We will be lazin’ around a lot! (smiles with immense self-satisfaction)
João: Eu tenho um trabalho, e tenho que ir agora. Tchau!

(Fade to a while later, still at the café.)

Vitória: É tarde. Preciso de ir para casa.
Nigel: I’ll walk you home if you like.
Vitória: Não, obrigada. Eu fico bem.
Nigel: Well, then, let me walk you to the door.
Vitória: Está bem, obrigada.

(They walk to the front door of the café. Nigel tries to push the door of the café open for Vitória, but it needs to be pulled.)

Vitória: Puxe!43

(Nigel tries to push on the door.)

Vitória: Puxe!

(Nigel struggles with the door, pushing harder.)

Vitória: Puxe!

(Nigel pushes very hard, but to no avail.)

Vitória: Puxe! Puxe! Puxe!

(Nigel pushes as hard as he can, the door rattles, but won’t open.)

Vitória: (pushing Nigel out of the way, pulls the door open) Puxe. (she exits)
Nigel: Some days it does not pay to be a gentleman.

(Fade out.)

(The scene: Tiffani & Co.’s ridiculously large penthouse apartment in New York City. Tiffani, Hannah, Louane, Eleanor, and Gabriela are sitting around chatting.)

Tiffani: Hey you guys, let’s go shopping!

(All the girls except Hannah jump up and squeal with excitement.)

Tiffani: Ewww. Why is this laundry pile still here? Yuck. Is anyone ever going to claim this smelly pile of rotting clothes?

(No one answers, and all the girls except Hannah leave, closing the door.)

Hannah: (picks up her cell phone and hits a number on speed dial) Hallo, Chuck? Willst du mich besuchen kommen? (she hangs up)

(About 10 seconds later, there is a knock at the door. Hannah opens the door.)

Hannah: (giving Chuck a small kiss) Warte hier. (she heads to the bedroom)
Chuck: Okey dokey. (picks up the remote and turns on the TV) Ooo. Basketball! (he flops down on the sofa)

(A very short while later, Hannah enters from behind, wearing a negligee.)

Hannah: (in an alluring tone) Chuck. Oh, Chuuuuuuck! Willst du mit mir ...
Chuck: (not looking up, mumbling) Can’t it wait until after the game?
Hannah: (leaning closer over his shoulder) Wie bitte?
Chuck: Yes, but after! After!44

(Hannah slaps her hand to her mouth with a horrified look on her face and runs back to the bedroom and closes the door. Chuck doesn’t look away from the TV.)

(Fade to a while later. Hannah is in the kitchen, crying a little. Chuck is still on the sofa absorbed in the basketball game. Tiffani, Louane, Eleanor, Gabriela, and a new woman all come in with shopping bags.)

Tiffani: Hannah, we met Helga at the mall and decided to bring her back with us. (sees Hannah crying, drops her bags, and hurries over to her) Oh, no! What’s wrong, Hannah?
Hannah: Ich fühle mich schmutzig.
Gabriela: ¿Por qué? ¿Qué pasó?
Hannah: Chuck...
Eleanor: Yes, sweety?
Hannah: Er will mich...
Tiffani: It’s okay, you can tell us.
Hannah: Chuck steht auf schmutzigen Sex!
Tiffani: Oh no!
Hannah: Ich geh’ mich waschen.

(Hannah throws up her hands, hangs her head, and runs to her bedroom. On the way by, she smacks Chuck in the back of the head. Chuck looks up, confused, then goes back to the game.)

Louane: Pourquoi a-t-elle parlé de vaches? Maintenant, j’ai besoin d’une douche.
Tiffani: Yeah, Chuck can be a douche sometimes.
Eleanor: Oh, ladies! I’m so glad we’re finally going to be able to have a heart-to-heart chat about feminine freshness!

(Tiffani, Louane, and Gabriela scatter and head to their rooms, though each manages to pass behind Chuck and smack him on the back of the head.)

Chuck: What did I do?

(Eleanor grabs Helga by the hand, walks slowly to her bedroom, passing behind Chuck, smacking him once more on the back of the head. Helga smacks him, too, for good measure. Chuck doesn’t even look up. After they have all gone into their bedrooms, Chuck pulls out his cellphone. He dials.)

Chuck: Hey, Maximilian. I’m over at Hannah and Tiffani’s. The game is on. Invite the guys and come over. You might want to bring a helmet. (hangs up)

(Ten seconds later, the door opens, and Maximilian, Lucas, Nigel, and Pablo come in and flop on the couch around Chuck.)

(Fade to a while later. The girls are back in the living room. Hannah seems to have recovered. João e Vitória and Giovanni e Sofia have joined the group.)

(João and Vitória are mumbling to each other indistinctly for several seconds.)

João: ... dois anos.45
Chuck: (chuckles) I know a joke that starts with two of those walking into a bar.
Pablo: Yo también. Es muy divertido. (chuckling) Dos anos46 andan—
(Giovanni laughs, too.)47
Gabriela: (hits Pablo lightly) ¡Ay, no!
Vitória: (visibly embarrassed)48 No! No! Ano!

(Chuck, Giovanni, and Pablo begin to laugh, unable to hold it back. Maximilian, Lucas, and Nigel are stifling chuckles. João looks confused for a moment, then also starts to chuckle.)

Gabriela: No, es como año en español. Pablo, ¡Cayate!

(All of the men are laughing uncontrollably now.)

Tiffani: Maximilian!
Hannah: Chuck! Genug!
Vitória: Ano! Que criancice! Ano! Ano! Ano!

(What had appeared to be the pile of dirty laundry starts to move a little. Eventually, the head of a very, very old man with Germanic features and a Pickelhaube pops up.)

Old Man:49 (in a very creaky voice) Hwaz?50

(Tiffani faints.)

(Fade to a while later, still in the apartment. Maximilian has revived Tiffani and has given her a glass of water. Several of the friends are discussing movies.)

Vitória: Eu gosto do filme Alice, mas é muito triste.51
Gabriela: Yo lo vi, también. Es muy triste.
Helga: Varför gillar du den då, om den är trist?
Tiffani: Wait, who had a tryst with who?
Giovanni: Mio cognato52 è il mio film preferito.
Chuck: Ugh. Who would want to see a movie about cognates?

(Fade out. End credits.)

1 Esperanto “How are you?”
2 French “mushrooms”
3 Spanish also “mushrooms”
4 Esperanto “employment”
5 Cf. German bekommen “to get or receive”
6 Cf. Esperanto piĉo, a rude word for a woman’s girly bits.
7 A common pronunciation of English chicken among speakers of many Northern Mexican dialects of Spanish.
8 Italian: “oysters”
9 A Cuban dish; the name translates from Spanish as “old clothes”
10 Spanish “underwear”
11 French “bread”
12 German “poison”
13 German Spritze “injection”
14 German “pimples”
15 German, loosely, “I want”
16 often pronounced /xɔrndɔg/
17 Spanish “condoms”
18 Italian “condoms”
19 Spanish “boring”
20 Centraal Perk in Dutch
21 Russian Дай (мне)! “Give (me)!”
22 Cf. Italian casino “brothel”
23 Cf. Swedish prick “dot”
24 Swedish “leech” and German “hedgehog”
25 Hungarian “six”
26 Swedish “six”
      27 Swedish “ankle”
28 Arabic “Enough!” or “No more!”
29 Swedish prick “dot”
30 Georgian “father”
31 Japanese 最高, /saikou/, “the best”
32 French “snout”
33 French “injured”
34 French “arm”
35 Swedish “good”
36 British “to wake someone up by knocking”
37 Cf. Spanish embarazada “pregnant”
38 Cf. Spanish estar constipado “to have a head cold”
39 Cf. Spanish doler “to hurt”, me duele “hurts me”
40 Portuguese “toilet”; Cf. Spanish retrete, also “toilet”
41 German “I want”
42 German “read”
43 Portuguese “pull”
44 Cf, German after “anus”
45 Portuguese “years”
46 Spanish “anuses”
47 Cf. Italian ano “anus”
48 but not visibly pregnant
49 Cf. Old High German ano “grandfather/ancestor”
50 Old High German “what?”
51 Portuguese “sad”; Cf. Swedish trist “boring”
52 Italian “brother-in-law”

The Olde Yankee Grammarian—Elan Dresher
Collateral Descendant of Lingua Pranca—Style Sheet and Submission Guidelines—Eddy Turr
Collateral Descendant of Lingua Pranca Contents