So you don’t speak much English?

A local politician doorstepped us yesterday (there must be an election looming if the politicians deign to visit). He wasn’t a success.

Firstly, he was already on his way to glad-hand next door before I even had time to answer our door, and secondly, his first words when he did manage to return were “So you don’t speak much English?”

After we established that I am Australian, he said that he thought he’d heard Eastern European accents on his first pass of our door. Considering the speed at which he moved, maybe the doppler effect had distorted what he heard.

“So you don’t speak much English?” as an opening gambit is at once appalling and condescending, regardless of what he thought he heard.