Fact Check

Foreign Room Service

Pronunciation problems plague exchange between traveler and room service in Far East hotel.

Published Feb 3, 2003

Claim:   Pronunciation problems plague exchange between traveler and room service in Far East hotel.

Status:   False.

Example:   [Collected via e-mail, 2003]

This exchange between an English-speaking traveller and a member of the hotel staff in a Far East hotel was recorded in the "Far-East Economic Review" about five years ago. It may take you a while to fathom it all out, but do try. Once you know what it is supposed to be, it really is hilarious!

Room Service: Morny. Rune-sore-bees.
Hotel Guest: Oh, sorry. I thought I dialed Room Service.
Room Service: Rye, rune-sore-bees. Morny. Djewish to odor sunteen?
Hotel Guest: Uh... yes. I'd like some bacon and eggs.
Room Service: Ow July den?
Hotel Guest: What?
Room Service: Aches. Ow July den? Pry, boy, pooch...?
Hotel Guest: Oh, the eggs! How do I like them? Sorry. Scrambled please.
Room Service: Ow July dee baycome? Crease?
Hotel Guest: Crisp will be fine.
Room Service: Hokay. An Santos?
Hotel Guest: What?
Room Service: Santos. July Santos?
Hotel Guest: Ugh. I don't know... I don't think so.
Room Service: No. Judo one toes?
Hotel Guest: Look, I feel really bad about this, but I don't know what "judo one toes" means. I'm sorry.
Room Service: Toes! Toes! Why djew Don Juan toes? Ow bow eenglish mopping we bother?
Hotel Guest: English muffin! I've got it! You were saying toast! Fine. An English muffin will be fine.
Room Service: We bother?
Hotel Guest: No. Just put the bother on the side.
Room Service: Wad?
Hotel Guest: I'm sorry. I meant butter. Butter on the side.
Room Service: Copy?
Hotel Guest: I feel terrible about this but...
Room Service: Copy. Copy, tea, mill...
Hotel Guest: Coffee! Yes, coffee please. And that's all.
Room Service: One Minnie. Ass rune torino fee, strangle aches, crease baycome, tossy cenglish mopping we bother honey sigh, and copy. Rye?
Hotel Guest: Whatever you say.
Room Service: Hokay. Tendjewberrymud.
Hotel Guest: You're welcome.

Origins:   We've

been seeing this exchange kick about the Internet for several years, almost always baldly presented as a "this really happened!" tale, one replete with small touches indicating the action took place in a Far East Hotel or that this account appeared as a news item in one periodical or another. Once again, a funny story penned by celebrated comic Shelley Berman has been dressed up to position it as a slice of real

Hot copy?


As Mr. Berman says on his web site: "The above dialogue never actually took place in any hotel anywhere in the world. It is an intentionally composed humorous fiction."

If the name of Shelley Berman seems hauntingly familiar, it's likely because another of his works has also been bruited about the online world, the hilarious "Hotel Soap."

Barbara "room service with a smile" Mikkelson

Last updated:   17 December 2005


  Sources Sources:

    Berman, Shelley.   A Hotel Is a Place.

    Los Angeles: Price/Stern/Sloan, 1972.   ISBN 0-8431-10211-X.

    Berman, Shelley.   A Hotel Is a Funny Place.

    Los Angeles: Price/Stern/Sloan, 1985.   ISBN 0-8431-1418-5.

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