How Swiss cheeses gave me some Glee

January 25, 2011, 9 Comments

No copyright infringement intended

Glee has finally made it on to Swiss television. Sigh of relief. Now all my Swiss friends will at least stand a chance of knowing what I am talking about. Of course, this is Series One, ie a whole year behind the rest of the world. But that’s not too surprising as this is the country where shopping hours are stuck in 1982 and some voters think society should return to 1952. I guess they won’t be the ones watching a show with a gay guy, teenage pregnancy, and a disabled character. Oh, and lots of great music.

The best thing about Swiss TV is that for many programmes you can choose which language you watch it in. How cool is that. Either the dubbed German version or the original English one. Press a button and all the odd voices and mismatched lip-synching go away. There’s even a little symbol in the TV guides to show which programmes are switchable. This week, for instance, we have the likes of Glee (naturally), Desperate Housewives, Dexter, CSI Miami, The Simpsons and the film Twilight. It’s not that I don’t understand the German, it’s more that I want the real actors’ voices and emotions.

Given that I’ve already seen that series of Glee, I must confess that I’m watching Series Two over on British television. No switching voice channels for that, but it does mean sitting through adverts. Swiss television usually only has those between programmes rather than intruding in the middle. That I like. Last night’s British episode of Glee was one I’d been waiting for.  ‘Grilled cheesus’, the one where the quarterback ends up praying to a grilled cheese sandwich that sports an image of Jesus. Yeah, I know, but it is an American show – and much better than most. After that episode played in the States, a friend emailed me to say the scriptwriter must have read page 284 of my book. Now I see why.

It’s the bit of the book that is many people’s favourite part. It wasn’t my finest moment of working at Stauffacher but, thanks to my very English ear and a customer’s very Swiss pronunciation, it was certainly the funniest – or maybe I should now say most gleeful.

Swiss customer: I need a book on cheeses.

In the Cookery section I get out our three books on cheese.

Customer, shaking her head: Not cheese, CHEE-SES

At this point I am wondering if cheese has a plural. Was it like sheep, with none? Or more like fish, plural when more than one type is involved? Or was this a Swinglish plural, like informations. Not wanting to get into a discussion on that, I try again, going with the plural in the hope that it helps.

Me: So you are looking for something about cheeses?

Customer: Yes, books on the holey cheeses.

Me, smiling: Ah, a book on Swiss cheeses.

Customer, looking at me as if I am simple: There is no Swiss cheeses.

Me, now wondering about a singular verb with a plural noun: We do have books on Swiss cheeses.

Customer, very irritated: Cheeses was not Swiss. Cheeses was the Son of God.

Me, finally catching up: Oh, you mean Jesus.

Customer: Yes, this is what I have been saying. A book on cheeses.

No-one has ever let me forget my encounter with Swiss Jesus.

9 Comments on "How Swiss cheeses gave me some Glee"

  1. Katharina Thursday January 27th, 2011 at 08:25 AM · Reply

    Don’t forget the lead female role is openly lesbian and married! Goof for her, but blasphemy for swiss fundis. I got into a real flamefight over same sex marriage on a swiss blog once. outch.

    Do they broadcast Lip Service over there on Cable TV?

    Question: Don’t you think the year 1952 is way too progressive for those folks? lets try 1352. Won’t we.

    And cheeses are almost holy to many there. I agree they make superb ones – hard to get over here in yankiestan. 🙂

    nice article btw.

  2. Brige Saturday January 29th, 2011 at 06:09 AM · Reply

    Christ on toast!

  3. Anne Asher Monday February 14th, 2011 at 08:17 PM · Reply

    LOVED the Grilled Cheesus episode!! I laughed out loud all the way through!!

  4. najube Wednesday February 23rd, 2011 at 07:03 PM · Reply

    Ahahaha! That’s so funny. Thanks, I needed a good laugh today. Swiss Jesus… heeheehee. You do realise that you are to blame for the fact that I’m now going to spend the rest of the day bursting into giggles every 20 odd minutes whilst muttering Swiss cheese to myself, right? 😉

  5. gegu Thursday January 17th, 2013 at 11:46 PM · Reply

    Just found this funny picture on 9gag and instantly thought of your swiss cheeses. thought it was funny..

    • Diccon Bewes Friday January 18th, 2013 at 06:52 PM · Reply

      I love that! Thanks for posting it.

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