(Imagine below conversation in Spanish)
Me: We’re going to this address, which is located just off street x which is near street y. Perhaps we can take street z? Also, I have a map if you want to see it? [I offer, trying to avoid replica of prior experience of driving around indefinitely & asking people on the street to get to this little-known address, despite me knowing EXACTLY where it is & having a map depicting it & taxi driver not believing me but instead random stranger, who confirms my instructions.]
Taxi driver: your Spanish is very good
Me: No, it’s not, but thank you
Taxi Driver: I’ve never learned any English. I was only educated through 6th grade. I didn’t like school.
Me: I understand that feeling.
Taxi Driver: But I can understand you. Sometimes, there will be a group of 3 women on the side of the street & they yell “Taxiiii” [in gringo accent] at me. I slow down, but then I can tell they do not speak any Spanish & I don’t speak any English. So I don’t pick them up, because we won’t be able to communicate. It doesn’t work.
Me: For me, it depends on the person and the topic.
Taxi Driver: See, you said “depends on the topic”, but here we would say “depends on topic”, but I can understand you.
Me: Yes, there are many things I don’t know in Spanish.
Taxi Driver: For instance, what does “mickeyteesone” mean in English?
Me: Huh? Mickeyteesone? Uh, I don’t know…
Taxi Driver: Yes, mickeyteesone. Once, I had someone in my taxi & we were talking about boxing and the boxer mickeyteesone and his problems with women. They had a book about boxing & I said something about mickeyteesone & they told me “No, it’s ‘Mike Tyson‘.” But how was I to know? I have only read his name in newspapers & magazines & that is how we say it here.
Me: Ohhhh…. MIKE TYSON. Yes, that is how we say it. He does have problems with women.