Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Just say no
I’ve noticed that French people like to say non.
It makes me think of a Portuguese guy I met in Horta, who was affectionately named Johnny Paradise. That wasn’t really his name, but the Dane mangled his real name and this moniker stuck. Besides strumming his freaking guitar at every opportunity, Johnny Paradise liked to talk about his ability to speak five languages, and how that had lead to his working at a travel agency. He’d manage to work, “Well, you know I can speak five languages…” into every brief conversation at least three times, lest anyone forgot. One of the things he said about the French was that their initial response to any idea, proposition or random thought was always, “Ce n’est pas possible.”
I hate to admit that Johnny Paradise was right.
I dissolved into giggles a couple of times while trying to open a bank account with different French banks because he hit it right on the money -- intonation, expression, and all. Thanks for the heads up, Johnny.