( CNN) Britain and America, it has been said, are two countries divided by a common language. Ahead of Prime Minister Theresa May's presser with President Donald Trump on Friday — the first for Trump with a foreign head of government — that capacity for near-miss communication was fully on display.

Right from the beginning, in fact — the traveling British press corps was temporarily denied access after some confusion over credentials and the use of the dd-mm-yy birthdate format( something employed not just in Britain, but much of the world ).