Fresh from a visit to the dentist, I decided to stop at my bank. Barely able to enunciate, I told the teller, "I'm sorry about not speaking more clearly. I've been to the dentist."
"You should have used the drive-through," she said.
"Everyone who goes through sounds like you," she explained.
In San Diego to work with military linguists, my colleague and I checked into a hotel and ordered a 5 a.m. wake-up call. The next morning, the phone didn’t ring until 5:30.
“You were supposed to call us at 5 a.m.!” I admonished the desk clerk on the other end of the line. “What if I had to close a million-dollar contract this morning? Your oversight would have cost me the deal!”
“Sir,” he said calmly, “if you had to close that type of deal, I doubt you’d be staying in this type of hotel.”