This cross-cultural dating mishap (in response to this post, and building on this thread) is a true story submitted by Erin in Sydney:
I have many cultural mis-step stories in general, but the only one date-wise I can think of is this one when I was living in Chile. (Warning: it’s not hugely funny or unique!)
First date: I turn up “on time” (Chilean time, e.g., 45 minutes late). He turns up on time (gringa time, at the agreed time). He was a bit peeved that I made him wait so long.
Second date: I turn up on time (gringa time). He turns up on time (Chilean time). This time I had to wait nearly an hour.
We ended up pololeando (a Chilean word meaning “dating”) … though the timing thing was always an issue.
Thank you, Erin. Everyone, we are eager to hear a few of your “mis-steps!” It is our belief that sharing our Cultural DeFectives with others can even the playing field a bit, showing that intercultural competence is a lifelong enjoyable learning journey rather than a static state.
Love the post! Reminds me of a blind date I set up in Costa Rica. She spoke little Spanish and he spoke little English- I went along to interpret and see where it led. There was a lag and he asked me in Spanish- how do you say “Are you bored” in English? I told him and he said to her “You must be boring”. The date ended quickly.