My boss and I speak different languages.

He's the first to admit that half the time, he doesn't understand a word I say. Recently, he has adopted the habit of stopping me before I can say anything when he approaches me.

"I'm going to ask you a simple question," he'll say, "and I want a simple answer in one sentence."

He'll think for a moment, choosing his words with visible effort to simplify his question to the point where I couldn't possibly turn it into something more complicated. Then he'll ask me something like,


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