Monday, April 16, 2007

WORDS: Adventures in Bilingualism

"Did I just overhear you telling Sam that 'chien' is the French word for 'frog'?"
"But it's not. It means 'dog'."
"Er, yes."
"Je m'appelle poutine!"


Carol Blymire said...

Poutine. Dang. Now I'm craving that. Thanks. Thanks a lot. I don't have time to fly to Montreal for lunch today.

Anonymous said...

This is where the Canadian/American border becomes a little less gray, I think.

Admittedly, my knowledge of French is limited to about three words. And so I used Google translators to decipher the last phrase ... which comes to "I am called poutine?"

I remember first hearing about poutine maybe three years ago when my brother came back from college in Alberta. It's french fries and gravy, right?

If this is a really obvious joke, I apologize. I'm running on an average of 4 hours of sleep/night for the past three days. I ... I ... I ... I'm confused.

But, "I am called poutine" is my new favorite book opener, now. So, there's that.

Doppelsis said...

Poutine is french fries smothered in gravy AND cheese curds. You must not forget the cheese. It's all about the cheese. Got it?!

Em said...

My French teacher in school was Dutch, which might have irrevocably messed up my pronunciation.
I tried singing "Je suis une pizza" for an American friend, once. It's all I know.
Oh, and "Vive l'Algerie!"

Mmmm poutine. Must be done with curds. Don't you just huck some cheap mozzarella on there and tell me it's poutine. (A&W, I'm looking at you.) You need seasoned wedge fries, some kind of poultry-based gravy (preferably from scratch,) and salty, rubbery curds oozing a bit over the top.

Jackie said...

You've got to teach Sam the correct French word for "frog". It's so much fun to say: Grenouille! (That's roughly pronounced "greh-NOO-ee" for those unfamiliar with French.)

Tammy said...

Poutine with MOZZARELLA? I'm just going to pretend I didn't hear that. Rubbery, squeaky curd, and only rubbery, squeaky curd, that's the rule. (Squeaky Curd is the name of my Franco-Canadian punk band, by the way.)

Cap'n, there's no real obvious joke, other than the fact that Rusty is illiterate in both official languages.

Anonymous said...

Cheese Curds? CHEESE CURDS???????? What is this madness? They tried to introduce some kind of fried cheese curds at KFC here in the states and I think that lasted about two minutes. French fries with gravy? Sure, I'm on board. But cheese curds? Please no.

Tammy said...

Anonymous, I don't know the depth and breadth of your experience with cheese curds, but I can assure that whatever KFC calls "cheese curd" is not the real thing. Real cheese curd is only available in areas with close proximity to the dairies that make it, because it doesn't travel or age particularly well, and it loses its taste upon refrigeration and therefore is best kept at room temperature. Real curd is raw cheese in its freshest state, and if it doesn't squeak pleasantly against your teeth as you eat it, it ain't the real thing.

You are, of course, totally to be understood and sympathized with in your antipathy toward KFC "cheese curd," which is, no doubt, an abomination of all that is cheesy and sacred.

There's not much I know with absolute certainty in this crazy world, but I know cheese.