A conversation from the language school in Madrid…
Student 1: Who was the best governator of Texas?
Me: Well, um… Governator is a term that’s only used for Arnold Schwarzenegger. You know… Governor + Terminator = Governator.
Student 1: Do you mean that Governator isn’t a real word?
Me: That’s what I mean. The other thing is that I’m not from Texas.
Student 1: You’re not?
Me: No, I’m not. I’m from Arizona.
The conversation continues, as my life slowly ends, working at a language school in Madrid for 10 euros an hour…
Is Arizona the capital of Texas?
Student 1: Yes, and Arizona is the capital of Texas.
Me: No it isn’t!
Student 1: Well, it’s close, isnt’ it?
Me: Well, close like Madrid and Berlin are close. Anyway, to answer your question, our governors are like Spanish politicians. They steal everybody else’s money. Well, actually, ours sometimes go to prison. Spanish politicians never go to prison.
Student 2: So when you lived in Arizona, did you live on a farm?
Me: Well, it’s a long story…
This happens to me quite a lot. I go to a party and tell everybody I’m from Arizona, and 5 minutes later, they’re introducing me as “Dani from Texas”. But how are they going to know? It’s not like American geography is terribly relevant to people who have lived their whole lives on another continent.
Updated, 2016. Okay, okay. It looks like some Spanish politicians now go to prison. For a while. Some of them. Others live long happy lives denying the whole thing.