Kiss Me Sir, Can I Take Your Order?
As I heard the name of my publication, The Asian Wall Street Journal, being mangled once again over an indifferent phone line by secretaries who could not, or chose not to, make out my English accent — variations today included Asia Watching Journal, Asia Movie General or my current favourite, Asian World Strip Journal – I was given to reminiscing about my early days in Thailand, when I took to noting down the different interpretations one might make of the polite ‘Excuse me, Sir’ oft uttered by waiters and other members of the tourist industry.
The only ones I can recall are as follows (they need to be spoken aloud, fast and in an Isaan accent if you’re up to it): the somewhat informal “Kiss Me Sir”, the relatively obscure “A Skirmisher” (and its more precise cousin “Ex Skirmisher”) and the thoroughly abject “Kill Me Sir”. There were others, including the one I suspect many of them really intended but which is too vulgar for family blogging (but involves replacing the word ‘kiss’ or ‘kill’ with something more feisty involving a household tool that is not a bolt). Any others very welcome.