https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BenZeller

Duolingo almost saved me from a shark

I realized that I haven't shared this story and I really want to.

It was a hot summer day. A perfect beach day... or so I thought. The lifeguards had been speaking in Italian, and I, due a bit to the linguist in me and a bit to the stalker in me, wanted to eavesdrop on what they were saying. Here's what happened as I waded into the ocean depths:

I trudge deeper and deeper before I begin to hear the lifeguards' conversation (the beach drops off quickly so I was still close enough to hear the lifeguards talk). This all stopped when I heard the word squalo, Italian for, you guessed it, shark. I immediately bolted faster than an Olympian to the shore.

Turns out, there was a shark. It never came close enough to harm anyone, but I thought this was a funny little tale on how Duolingo has helped me. Do y'all have any stories about how Duolingo has helped you?

October 11, 2016

26 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kevinguy19

Well, it didn't almost save you... otherwise you would have been eaten!

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mr.Dustin

Exactly what I was thinking.

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BenZeller

True - and thank God I wasn't! That would be a lot less funny

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DavidStyIes

Well, it almost saved him insofar as the shark was apparently minding its own business, and/or not deemed sufficiently threatening as to prompt the lifeguards to raise the alarm rather than merely conversing about it.

It would have actually saved him, if the shark had tried to eat him, and he said: "Ma, che cazzo fai, squalo, non mi mangi!", and the shark swam away, ashamed of itself.

That said, while dangerous sharks do live in the Med, attacks on humans are rare and broadly speaking, sharks are more at risk from humans than the other way around.

October 13, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Usagiboy7

This is such an awesome story!! :D

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BenZeller

Thanks! I'm just glad I was able to share it with everyone (and avoid the shark in the first place!!!)

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DragonPolyglot

Veramente? Come drammatico! (Sorry if this turns out to be choppy Italian)

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BenZeller

No choppier than mine :)

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sjodni

I love this story, and I think it's fair for Duolingo to officially start using the phrase, "DUOLINGO SAVES LIVES", in their advertising campaigns. I think this is a good enough motive to learn more Italian, and learn words like, "alien", "monster", "rabid dog", "pothole", or "cliff". Those might come in handy to know, too. (:

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BenZeller

Haha glad to hear that you like it.

I for one am all for "Duolingo saves lives!" Another phrase that we should know for this is "Watch out!"

I say that because once I was in Mexico, and the phrase for Watch Out there is Aguas!, which also means Waters!. I was too busy paying attention to why the waiter said Waters! to realize that there was a step in front of me, and I tripped and fell, looking like a total ganso (idiot).

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/runhaags

"Zombie" seems important too.

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LindseySquire

lol so true

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/noagreene-1

i am laughing super hard

February 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BassettMahayla

That is so cool! I know a lot of Spanish speakers, so it is nice to talk to them in their native language. They are all impressed by how far I have gotten!

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/spooky0014

i don't know what i would do if i was in that situation

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BannoffiePieTree

Wow! cool :)

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Andrew-Macdonald

Yet another reason to learn a language: It can save your life.

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Roji-and-Salsa

In Germany we have a joke: Was sagst du, when du im Meer einem Hai begegnest? (What du you say, when you meet a shark in the sea?) You say "hi" (Hai=shark) When I met some sharks in the Maldives I tried, but they didn' t understand English and German and so they swam on, to quick for me to follow.

Usually sharks aren't interested in humans. More people got injured and killed by dogs then by sharks. But of course it depends on the kind of shark, a few of them are dangerous. But even those usually don't attack.

There is a whole diving industry specialized on shark encounters for divers. And some divers want to swim with the big ones.

January 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Elizabeth261736

Best title for a Duolingo post ever!

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lento_Rodriguez

I know! When I read it the first thought that came to mind was that he ran into a Spanish speaking shark or something.

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BenZeller

That would've made for a much cooler story :D

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LindseySquire

That's what i though too! LOL

October 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KorynnaLau0

how do you do the animated sun?

October 14, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KorynnaLau0

WOAH.

October 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nita449392

Wow, what a zany story - very amusing. Shows that curiosity can not just kill cats, but save linguistically-minded eavesdroppers who have Duo in close range?! Glad I get to read this tale two years after it's posted!!

September 2, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nita449392

giving you a lingot for your post 2 years ago...hope you're still on deck with Duo

September 2, 2019
Learn a language in just 5 minutes a day. For free.