“Constable (banging on a locked door): Is you or ain’t you in there?
Man [investigated by the police](from inside his flat): Aren’t you-
How would you translate all this into your mother tongue without changing the meaning of the joke? Do I really need to insist on how difficult it is to translate?
Surely something like this has happened to you at least once. Well, some would say ‘not that it matters, really’ – but I don’t know about that: we’re humans, and these are things we are used to facing every day.
Cultural patterns have been a case in point for more than four decades. All things considered, people who socialize on a regular basis make recourse to what has been labelled the negotiation of meaning. Once the protocol has been acknowledged, the ‘actors’ adjust their positions within the interaction in order that both parties implied may take advantage of a win-win situation.
a. ‘My Dutch business associate came to see me at my office and, before the meeting, I tried to do a bit of small talk, so I asked him about the weather in Amsterdam. He said it was cold and windy at this time of the year and then I said, “I have been in Amsterdam for two days only.” He began to laugh and asked me, "Where are you now, then?"’ --
c. ‘I used to drink a lot of hot chocolate when I was young. Now I used to drink coffee and everybody tells me it's bad for my health. I'll have to get used to drink decaffeinated coffee and sleep more instead.’--
d. 'I stopped to eat chocolate because I was getting really fat.’—
From a blogger’s expectations, needless to say that I’ll be waiting for feedback!