Causing Awkward Silences – Is Orange the New Black?

When you speak in another language and live in another culture, it is almost inevitable that you will find yourself in awkward situations. Knowing this, and more importantly, having experienced many, I have a weird confidence in the US: If I find myself in a funny or embarrassing moment, I have an excuse, I am a foreigner.

That being said, there was a time that being a foreigner was not a good enough excuse. When it comes to popular culture, you are expected to know it no matter where you are from.

One day, the girl I was working with asked me “Do you know Orange is the New Black?” My answer was “Really?”

Awkward silence.

Orange can be the new black!

I thought it was a fashion statement, like on a page of a fashion magazine, “Orange is the new black, see this orange dress”. Plus, I don’t have Netflix account.

After a slight shock and thinking what to say, she said “No, I mean the Netflix show.”

I said, “Oh I saw the trailer,” as cool as possible. Just a little late to remember…

Well, I am a foreigner but not an alien to entertainment industry (although I am a legal alien in my passport status). I learned that ‘I am a foreigner’ excuse doesn’t always help.

Have you caused similar awkward silences? (Would it be another awkward silence if there are no comments below?)

Love,

Öykü

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