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A Speech In Japan

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A colleague of mine was once invited to give a speech at a convention in Japan.

Aware he had a good reputation as a public speaker, he was most surprised when his audience did not react at all to any of his perfectly timed jokes and witticisms.

In fact, the audience literally did not react to anything that he said at all.

Somewhat put down, he went back to his seat and a Japanese gentleman then got up on the stage.

This man had a terrific success! People laughed and applauded, and although the original speaker could not understand one bit of what was said, still he started to applaud, as the man evidently deserved praise for this perfect speech.

He was interrupted by the chairman of the conference, who said, “No, no, sir. You must not applaud”.

Dumfounded, my colleague protested: “But why? This man is obviously a very good speaker”.

“No sir, you must not applaud. He is translating your speech”.

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