Tuesday, January 30, 2024

My First Publication Of 2024.

Andrea Piarquadio on Pexels
My first publication of the year is a humor piece, Useful French Phrases For Madame Keith's World Languages Class at Slackjaw. And, of course, there is a story behind this piece, because there is always a story behind everything I write. For books there are usually multiple stories, and, sadly, I often can't remember them all because it takes me so flipping long to write books.

But I've got this one.

The Story Behind Useful French Phrases For Madame Keith's World Languages Class

I have been studying French moi-meme for years. By moi-meme I mean, really, myself, because I haven't taken a real French class or even an adult ed class in decades. J'etude de temps en temps, sometimes going years without making an effort. In fact, for the last few years studying French for me has involved watching French TV shows with English subtitles. Je me dit, "You're studying, you!" Mon objectif, because of course I have a goal, is to speak pig French, a term used by Marcel, a man I knew briefly years ago, or even rise up to franglais, which I understand is common with some of my family members in Ottawa. But let's be honest. I'll be satistifed to parle comme un couchon.

That's background. Psychological background, you might say.

Okay, last September I was on the Cape (That's Cape Cod, if you're in New England. There are other Capes, I'm sure.) and playing Monopoly with an eleven-year-old family member. The Monopoly part is important. We're chatting away (I don't care much for Monopoly so don't feel any need to concentrate while playing it), and it comes out that said eleven-year-old family member is taking a world languages class. And what is the first unit? You guessed it! French!

I'm sitting there thinking, I have someone to practice French with? Comment je dit "your turn?"  "How do I say" should probably have another verb in there, but, remember, I'm only shooting for pig French and "How I say?" is all I can manage.

So that got me thinking about kids and French and French classes. And the Monopoly game is important, because there is a section in Useful French Phrases on playing games. Our eleven-year-old is in sixth grade, but I kicked the speaker in Useful French Phrases up to seventh, thinking that would be more believable for the amount of French being used.

While I checked all the French phrases on Google (I didn't replace my last French-English dictionary when it fell apart, because I like Google so much) most of the French I used is at least familiar to me.


noochinator said...

There's Cape Ann in Massa too-- Cape Ann doesn't get enough credit. (I'm a native Masshole and never even heard of Cape Ann until I was in my late 50s. OK, I'm an idiot.)

Gail Gauthier said...

Cape Ann sounds familiar, though I couldn't have told you where it is.

Nancy said...

Tres bien.