One of the perks of doing research in London is the amount of conferences and talks I manage to do to. Hello, networking! However, interacting with your peers (and that worldwide famous Emeritus too) can be tricky if you don’t know how to translate the local language. And nope, I’m not referring to English.
“You know, if you’re looking into this topic, you might want to read Scholarton 2004” = I am sincerely pleased I have read an article that might be useful to you.
“Have you looked at McScholar 1894?” = I am showing off.
“I don’t know how you can do research on that without reading O’Scholar 1995!” = I am not even trying. Also, that book is in four volumes, and in Serbian. Good luck.
“—and after some final remarks, I hope you will join us for drinks at the students bar, so that we can carry on the discussion in an informal environment.” = Get ready, people. Tonight we’re getting drunk and fighting over existentialism till we drop
“You and I should write an article together some time!” = Long time no see! I am sincerely happy to see you, and we will never write a paper together. Or talk until the next conference, for that matter.
“What an ambitious project!” = I bet you fifty quid you’ll be on your knees in six months, begging your supervisor for a change of topic.
“Wow. And what timespan are you covering exactly?” = I have absolute no clue what you’re talking about and I’m trying to pinpoint at least a general area of research so that I don’t look like I only am at this conference because I took a wrong turn out of the Tube this morning.
“Your supervisor must be so-and-so / You must be in so-and-so research centre” = There we go. Another one. I don’t know why you are researching this thing, but I will keep an eye on you in case I need you.
“This is so fascinating. And where are you carrying on this project?” = What kind of godless institution allows you to waste funding on that?
“I am fairly interested in the topic myself. How’s progress going? / I’d be grateful if you could keep me posted” = OHGODOHGOD THIS IS MY TOPIC OH GOD I CAN’T BREATHE IF THEY PUBLISH BEFORE I DO I’M SCREWED PLEASE TELL ME YOU’RE DOING IT ALL WRONG