1. Be careful with language – a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing! I am not a linguist, but I took French in high school and German in college. Note the use of the word took, not learned! But I didn’t want to be an ugly American on my first trip to Germany, so I listened to language tapes for days before my trip. When the Lufthansa flight attendant asked me what I wanted to drink, I proudly responded “Ein glass wasser.” Imagine my chagrin when she asked me (in German, of course) if I wanted it with gas or without gas. I sheepishly replied, “Ich verstehe nicht.”
  2. Learn to recognize chicken in every language. Again, I’m hung up on this ugly American thing. I refuse to ask for an English menu, so I can recognize the word “chicken” in the language of every country I have visited. Of course, I can’t distinguish between menu items such as chicken liver and chicken feet, but at least everything I’ve ordered so far has tasted just like chicken.