Saturday, January 17, 2009

Bon Jour!

Bon jour... hello in French (you all knew that, right? Come on!!!). I took two years of French in high school. Why? Well, our choices at the time were French, Spanish, German and Latin. Any of the other three would probably have been better choices, but for the same reason a lot of people chose French, I thought the food would be good (when we got to the eating section which ended up being a total crock because it was just Crescent rolls and French bread....) and I thought it sounded cool. I never did get the hang of it. Foreign language was just not my thing, but we did have some fun with it and I do remember plenty of useless facts. I remember the first dialogue in the first chapter my freshman year (how does the brain work like that, when you can't remember your kid's middle name half the time?):

Phillipe: Bon Jour, Alice.
Alice: Bon Jour, Phillipe.
Phillipe: Ca va?
Alice: Oui, ca va, et toi?
Phillilpe: Pas mal.

To loosely translate it for you (like you probably couldn't have figured it out yourself), it is Alice and Phillipe running into each other asking how each other is doing, then saying, "Not bad." I have no idea why that sticks in my brain matter, but I can't get rid of it no matter how hard I smack my head against the wall. I also remember a lot of the words for furniture and car parts. To this day I am all set should I go to Paris and furniture shop or fix a car. Now, while the odds are TEENY TINY that I will ever go to France, they are even smaller that I will furniture shop or fix a car while I am there. Why do they teach that stuff? I couldn't find a doctor or bank, but I could get a sofa and new windshield. Shame on the American education system (Mr. Obama is really going to have his hands full, can't you see that now?). 

Probably the highlight of any foreign language class in high school is when someone comes in with the "underground" words.... the BAD words! I imagine a clueless American would hear those often if he or she actually went to France, and would want to identify when they are being told off (I know I do!), so really, they are very useful. We had Philippe and Alice saying all kinds of juicy dialogue once we got our hand on those sentence enhancers (again, thank you SpongeBob for letting me borrow your phrasing... where would I be without that little yellow guy?).

Still, if you need a travel companion to France, and are picking up the tab, I'm your girl (that's me, a giver, 24/7)!!

Stay warm and have a great weekend!



stampin abi said...

lol this just makes me laugh so much, in the uk we don't get a choice of not doing french, until your really good at it and they let you choose spanish or german as well. so my french consists of... Bonjour ca va? oui cava bien merci et vous, oui bon. can you tell i listened to the teacher for 5 years! lol

Jan said...

We didn't have to have a credit in foreign language in order to graduate when I went to high school - I guess that says a lot about the SC school system. LOL. However, I did learn some Spanish during my stay in El Paso.

Emily (stampingout on SCS) said...

Took 4 years of spanish in high school. You would think I could speak a little spanish, but NO! I can read it (my teacher was BIG on grammar and what not) but when I take care of a spanish speaking patient I always have to fumble with my little spanish medical dictionary! :)