While waiting to get into a popular phở restaurant in San Jose, my daughter tried to read the sign taped to the window. “Dad, what does that say?” she asked.
“It’s a help wanted sign,” he said.
My daughter studied the sign to see if she recognized any words. “What does cần mean?”
“Need. It says they need a man to run around tables. It’s for a bus boy.”
I took a look at the sign. “Nam chạy bàn” is literally “man run table.” “Does it mean running as in managing the tables or running around them?” I asked.
My husband laughed. “Probably both.”
We all agreed the Vietnamese term “man running tables” sounded more accurate than bus boy, whether it meant running the tables or running around them.
3 thoughts on “Running Tables”
A friend of mine is learning Vietnamese & she has a lot of stories similar to this one : ) She’s enjoying learning the language, and it’s making me want to learn too!
Thanks for reading, Paula! I’m often charmed by the way to say things in other languages and glad to hear others enjoy this, too. I also am fascinated by different sayings and just complied some of the Vietnamese expressions I’ve heard here http://www.michellerobinla.com/index.php/vietnamese-sayings/
yah, and “bus boy” is just as confusing…ha