English Language Confusion ...

Ah, the joys of speaking the "same" language!  I am a Brownie Guider in the North of England.  Last year, I also acted as a co-leader for an American Brownie Girl Scout unit on a base nearby.  My co-leader, although American, had spent the last several years in Australia.  As a result, we both had "English-language" editions of the Red Cross First Aid manual.  We copied the list of what should go into a first aid kit, and handed it out to the girls, with a request that they bring the items in a small box or bag, the following meeting.

The girls walked in with enormous bags, complaining about the weight. When they unloaded their bags, we were amazed to see that 14 girls had brought bags of dry plaster mix with them!  The British word for a "band-aid" is a sticking PLASTER, and on seeing plaster on the first aid list, the girls assumed we would be making leg and arm casts.  So universal was the assumption, that the Arts and Crafts centre on base had run out of plaster, re-ordered, and run out again, and several girls brought notes from parents saying that there was no plaster left, and could they bring it in next meeting?

Any ideas on what to do with nearly 20 lbs of quick-drying plaster?!!

8th Knaresborough Brownies, North Yorkshire West County, England

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This page last updated January 2nd, 1998