From: The Virtual Classroom of Professor Dino Crawley
When my Japanese wife walked into a small store in New York. A big man open the door and shouted “woyowan”. She was really confused as the man kept screaming “woyowan, woyowan”. Of course, the man was struggling to say “what do you want”. But, this person even though he was a native English speaker had a very heavy accent as they have in New York that my wife could not even understand him.
My wife told me how she stood there for a quite a long time repeating what he was saying “woyowan, woyowan”.
Let me tell you what happened. There was this little store was in the New York City train station. It must have suffered from shoplifters in the past, because there was a lock on the door of the refrigerator that sold the drinks. My wife pulled on that door many times not realizing that the door was locked. She told me the story of how a big person who worked in the store stopped her from pulling on the door, and shouted at her, “woyowan”. My wife told me how confused she was when he shouted “woyowan” at her.
That is a very real example of how speaking terrible English can affect even your job.