This is a true story (believe it or not?) of the Japanese Embassy in the United States.

A while ago, Japanese Prime Minister Mori received some instructions in Basic English conversation before he visits Washington and meets president Barack Obama…

The instructor told Mr. Mori: When you shake hand with President Obama, please say ‘How are you’. Then Mr. Obama should say, ‘I am fine, and you?‘. And you respond saying: ‘Me too’. Afterwards we, translators, will do the work for you. It seems very simple, but the truth is…

When Mr. Mori met Obama, he mistakenly said ‘Who are you?’ – Instead of ‘How are you?’

Initially, President Obama was a little shocked, but managed to react with humor: ‘Well, I’m Michelle’s husband, ha-ha-ha…’

Then Mr. Mori replied: ‘Me too, ha-ha-ha…’

Then there was a long silence in the meeting room…

Chess Daily News from Susan Polgar
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