Useful Phrases For The Intergalactic Tourist

This Will Keep You Out Of Trouble

by Joanna Russ, edited and slightly modified by Jon Nelson (Joanna Russ, edited and slightly modified by Jon Nelson)
written 02 Apr 1995

This article is classified "Fictional"

It is advisable for the intergalactic tourist to learn this list by heart.

At the Hotel:
That is my companion.  It is not intended as a tip.
I will call the manager.
This cannot be my room because I cannot breathe ammonia.
I will be most comfortable between the temperatures of 290 and 303 degrees
Madam, this bed/nest is alive.
That is not what room service means on Earth.
Please do not turn off the gravity while I am utilizing the waste-
  reclamation unit.

At the Party:
Is that you?
Is that all of you?  How much (many) of you is (are) there?
I am happy to meet your clone.
Interstellar amity demands that we make some physical display at this 
  point, but I beg to be excused.
Are you toxic?
Are you edible?  I am not edible.
We humans do not regenerate.
My companion is not edible.
That is my ear.
I am toxic.
I do not eat living food.
I do not drink living drinks.
Is that how you copulate?
Is this intended to be erotic?
Thank you very much.
Please explain.
Do you turn colors?
Are you pregnant?
Regurgitation is intended as a great compliment to the hostess on Earth.
I shall leave the room.
Can't we just be friends?
Take me to the Earth Consulate immediately.
Although I am very flattered by your kind offer, I cannot accompany you 
  to the mating pits, as I am viviparous.

In the Hospital:
My eating orifice is not at that end of my body.
I would rather do it myself.
My religious convictions prevent me from joining in the event.
I do not feel well.
I feel very sick.
Please do not let the atmosphere in (out) as I will be most uncomfortable.
I do not eat lead.
These limbs are not mine.
My head is not interchangeable.
Placing the thermometer there will yield little or no useful information.
Take me to the Earth Consulate at once.

You are not my guide.  My guide was bipedal.
We Earth people do not do that.
That is my transportation.  It is not intended as a food.
Oh, what a jolly fine natatorium [mating perch, arranged spectacle, 
  involuntary phenomenon]!
At what hour does the lovelorn princess fling herself into the flaming 
  volcano?  May we participate?
That is not demonstrable.
That is hardly likely.
That is ridiculous.
I have seen much better examples of that.
Please direct me to the nearest sentient mammal.
Take me to the Earth Consulate without delay.

At the Theater:
Is that amusing?
I am sorry; I did not mean to be offensive.
I did not intend to sit on you.  I did not realize that was you. 
Could you please deform yourself a little bit lower?
My eyes are sensitive only to light in the wavelengths of 3000-7000 A.
Am I imagining this?
Am I supposed to be imagining this?
Should I be perturbed by that substance on the floor?
Where is the exit?
This is great art.
Is this supposed to be erotic?
May I take this home with me?
Is this part of the performance?
Stop touching me.
Sir or Madam, that is mine.  (extrinsic)
Sir or Madam, that is mine.  (intrinsic)
I wish to visit the waste-reclamation units.
Have you finished?
May I begin?
You are in my way.
Under no circumstances.
If you do not stop that, I will call the attendant. That is forbidden by 
  my religion.
Sir or Madam, this is a private unit.

You are more than before.
Your hair is false.
If you uncover your feet, I will faint.
There is no room.
You will undoubtedly be here tomorrow.
You are anatomically correct.

You are just the same.
There are more of you than previously.
Your fingers are showing.
How clean you are!
You are clean, but animated.
You are anatomically incorrect.

Take me to the Earth Consulate.
The Earth Consulate will hear of this.
This is no way to treat a visitor.
Please direct me to my hotel.
At what time does the moon rise?  Is there a moon?  Is it a full moon?
Something has just gone amiss with my vehicle.
I am dying.
I cannot comprehend the physical laws in operation at this quantum 
  singularity point.  Please direct me to the Pan-dimensional Earth Consulate
  in the moment immediately succeeding this one.

Go to [Root page | Title list | Author list | Date list | Index]