Saturday, September 25, 2010

dont let me be misunderstood

I feel odd saying things with an Irish accent, especially when I've been here less than a month. I feel like some kind of fancypants princess putting the Irish lilt on my words. "Please may I have soya milk in that skinny latte? Cheers." The truth is that it's necessary to be understood.

Example #1: The owner of our apartment came over to fix our washer/dryer. He emptied out some valve and cleaned the screen so we think it is fixed. He said to try a load of wash and "ring" him on the weekend. I agreed and said I'd "call". He made odd faces and repeated that I should "ring" him and I said "Ok I can call Saturday or Sunday". Later I realized that "calling" means to visit or drop in on somebody such as "I'll call round this afternoon" while "ring" is the phone call he was looking for.

Example #2: Last night a bartender insisted on pouring me Jack Daniels whiskey instead of gin when I asked for a gin and tonic. In the bustle of the bar it must have sounded like I was asking for "jack & coke" when I said "jen and tawn-ic" in an American accent. I tried later and said it in my thickest Irish-type accent "jeen and tone-ic" and they got the order right.

Speaking of gin & tonics...I am baffled. I am here to inform you that Irish bartenders are nothing but glorified grocery clerks: They do not mix drinks. In my gin & tonic experience the bartender put ice in a glass with gin and handed me a bottle of tonic on the bar. I unscrew the cap to pour my own amount of tonic. Not only does it feels like they are putting me to work, but it eliminates the concept of a place that makes good drinks; I am making the drink after all. It's awful to think of the proportions that are coming off that bar and what people must think proper drinks taste like. In fairness, you dont have to tip the bartender (for what?) so there are savings involved. Still, there is something lost in the art of mixology here. I have not seen a signature cocktail--nor would I be adventurous enough to try one considering the experience of the bartenders.

1 comment:

  1. My favorite drink was a cider black (just order it). my "cy-da" sounded like "soda" so i got a nonalcoholic beverage and a strange look from the bartender.
    Have you purchased yet the canned gin and tonic? I think it's in a green can. I kind of felt indifferent about it...