The following conversations occurred primarily in Norwegian, and I’ve translated them to English.
Norwegian coworker: So, when you learn Norwegian, in which language do you learn it?
Italian coworker: Sometimes English and sometimes Italian. Sometimes I have to change from Norwegian to English to Italian to understand something. There are so many steps!
Me: I know four or five Italian words. Che c****, f******, Che p****, and rimasuglio.
Italian: Why do you know rimasuglio? That is a weird word. I get why you know the others, but why rimasuglio?
Norwegian: What does it mean?
Italian, in English: Like leftovers, or remainder.
Me: The coworkers of mine in Harvard, she was from Italy, and she wants to know how says “rimasuglio” in English, but we do not have the good word for that. Sorry. The good words? Word good? Good words? She doesn’t like – didn’t like that.
Norwegian: This is funny. The Italian and the American are speaking to each other in Norwegian.
I joined a call late, and heard the other participants chatting in Norwegian. To show off, I tried to apologize for being late.
“Beklager for at jeg er sint,” I said. This was immediately met with laughter, including my own as I realized my mistake.
“Er du sint eller er du sen?” asked the chair of the meeting.
“Well, I’m not mad, so whichever one doesn’t mean angry,” I replied.