Monday, April 21, 2008

Toofless Conversations.

Part of the reason this blog is so gosh darn funny is because, well, funny stuff happens to me. Believe me I would love to be able to take more credit for the humorous moments, but alas I must admit, there isn’t much need for embellishment on my part.



And with that admission, I bring you a scene from my so-called life. A lovely 30 second exchange between myself and a drunk toothless guy in the line at the MATCH grocery store this afternoon: (Translated into English for clarity & hilarity).

Drunk Toofless Guy: Bonjour Madame.

Madame K: Bonjour.

Drunk Toofless Guy: Oh, go to the other line, he’s about to open the register! Go! Go Fast!

Madame K: Oh, thanks, but I doubt he will be open soon. I’ll stay here.

Drunk Toofless Guy: Aaaah. You just want to stay in this line because I’m in it.

Madame K: (No response. Continues unloading groceries onto filthy conveyor belt.)

Drunk Toofless Guy: Hey! You’re a Creole!

Madame K: (Still gives no response, but offers her signature WTF glare.)

Drunk Toofless Guy: You’re not a Creole? You’re from The Antilles right? Les Antilles. Les Antilles. Les Antilles.

Madame K: What? No, I’m American.

Drunk Toofless Guy: What? You’re American? American? Aaaaahhhh George Bush?

Madame K: Hey! I’m from New York, not from Texas!

Drunk Toofless Guy: Aaaah. The Towers. The 2 towers. They fell!

Madame K: Uhm ,yeah.

Drunk Toofless Guy: Aaaaah. (turns and wanders away.)

Madame K: (continues loading groceries onto filthy conveyor belt.)


End Scene.

Discuss.

17 comments:

Tori C said...

LOL! I just happened on your blog from another blog. I just wanted to send you a note to tell you that:
1. I love your blog! It had me crying laughing at times!
2. I am fascinated by "us" (black women) who choose to live abroad and follow their dreams or in your case "follow your heart"!
3. I think yours a one of those rare and fantastic blogs that you don't come across often.
Just wanted to say "Hello" from the bloggsphere. And I will be checking the blog often.

Tori
Montgmery,AL

OMYWORD! said...

I am a loyal email subscriber and love your blog too. I forwarded it to my girlfriend in San Fran who was born in Metz. She's also a trained chef so she salivates over your food pics. I love your art as well.

As an American expat in Paris, I have many interesting encounters. A Middle Eastern baker asked me if I was German and I said no, American. He said "George Bush!" with a thumbs down and then said "Hillary!" with a thumbs up. I smiled and nodded, even tho I am not a big fan of Hillary.

Anyway - thanks for entertaining and awing me on a regular basis. If you get a chance, check out my friend's website americanmemory.net. His film is about the history of slavery in America. But his film work is collage-like, and reminded me of your art.

Travel said...

And I thought it was just some village in Texas that was missing an idiot, apparently there is a village in France taht has faced the same fate.

DG

Camille Acey said...

Oh dear, this reminds me of the hunchbacked old man who lives in the senior citizens home down the block. Upon discovering that I actually understoof Slovene language he asked me to please come closer and give him one kiss!
Fresh.

screamish said...

Sounds like a pretty normal minimarket conversation to me...but then I lived in marseille 6 years!

Mignon said...

Creole? Would Les Antilles be considered similar to the Creole in Southern US. Like we say they speak fench, but it's considered Hillbilly french. Or am I way off?

Madame K said...

Tori & OMW- Glad you have fun reading. I'm always happy to amuse and entertain!

Travel- Many idiots apparently missing from many villages...

Camille & Screamish--Good to know that I'm not the only one having these insane encounters. I thought I was becoming a lunatic magnet.

Mignon- I...have...NO...idea. I googled 'Creole' and after reading up, I'm more confused than before I started.

This is my bewildered face.

Tammi said...

Madame K:

I came across your blog and I think its wonderful. I love the sense of adventure. But, as a native Texan (now living in D.C.) I have to say, Bush was born in Connecticutt!

Until Paris said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mignon said...

Madame K,
After my comment I left on your blog about the term or word "Creole", I received an anonymous comment on my blog explaining the definition. I would like to thank the anonymous author whomever you are. And here is what he/she wrote.

(Hi. I saw your question on another blog where you asked why the "drunk toofless guy" used the term "creole".

When he asked her if she was "creole", he was speaking specifically of her "ethnic" makeup. In Europe, they are able to distinguish between someone African-American and someone that is African, for example, since we don't look the same. Ours is a combination they are not used to seeing, so they often try to guess what we are. They know it's not African but they're not sure of what exactly. So they often ask if you're Creole - ethnically, not language-wise - from Martinique, Dominica, Les Antilles. Any of the regions in which the people are a mixture of French and African ancestry.

He was most likely just trying to figure out "what" she was and tried to guess. I doubt if he even meant any harm, though such questions can be startling. )

Camille Acey said...

@mignon
In Europe, they are able to distinguish between someone African-American and someone that is African, for example, since we don't look the same. Ours is a combination they are not used to seeing

I'm sorry to whoever wrote that, but - uh, there are COUNTLESS people of mixed European and African ancestry in France and some of them ARE from Africa (trust me I am related to some of those). Is there some special thing added to the "mix" of American Blacks that makes us "visibly" different looking? I really think this is dubious, and even if there was, the idea that white French people can "tell" is too beyond. Is the person basically saying "Well if you ain't "BLACK BLACK" then THEY KNOW." Gimme a break. They don't know nothin. We barely know anything. This comment is too ridiculous.

Angry Black Woman said...

I was disturbed by that comment and I also agreed with Camille, but I know people have a tendency to want to explain why someone in their own group (whether that be another country *person*, social group...whatever...ya'll get me right?) would inquire and say things that they feel an outsider might not understand. With that being said, explaining it should be on a broader scale...less personal.

Cherise said...

All I can say is, You crack me up. Not sure if you're a lunatic magnet, but you have great encounters!

And happy belated birthday. Frenchboy did well!

Madame K said...

Mignon- Thanks for the C&P comment about the word Creole. I've actually heard this explanation before and from my experience it's seems to be a bit true. I'm so used to being asked "where are you from?" that I'm immune to it now. People are just curious.


"Is there some special thing added to the "mix" of American Blacks that makes us "visibly" different looking?"


Dubious or not, there must be some truth to this suggestion because I get called out ALL the damn time. Everybody seems to be baffled when it comes to me. But that's a very long and very complicated story for another post...

holly said...

I think it's because you are light-skinned and supposedly back in the old day's all the light-skinned blacks he ever laid eyes on (if any) were creole. He sounds pretty ignorant to me, as would anyone who forces his beliefs on another without making the effort to learn even a teeny weeny bit of history or culture. Which is why believe it or not some folks still assume every single African is dark skinned,if not they cannot possibly be African. Kind of makes you wonder what would happen if they ran into say - Whoopi Goldberg or Jennifer Hudson. Will they automatically think they are "creole" too? There are many medium brown and light-skinned "pure" Africans, as there are just as many darker skinned African-Americans. So sadly, the average joe out on the street actually has a somewhat limited understanding of the complexities of the black race - not only of Africans but AA's and European blacks - hence the need crowbar you into some preconceived boxes which in this case means you are either "creole" or "other", namely African. How many non blacks particularly in Europe take the time to do the homework? In my experience, few. It is a subtle but real form of stereotyping - look around you - there are black's of all shades, behaviours and cultures AND any one of them could be African, European or African-American.

Pig in the Kitchen said...

ah yes, the French way of being tactless, mildly racist and xenophobic. They do it so well...
Pigx

Byron said...

Hey, I used to read your blog all the time, but got too busy. Just dropped by to see what you were up to. I love this section on the crazy French, soooo funny.

Anyway, your market story reminded me of the last time I ever rode a public bus. I was in college and trying to be all eco-friendly. I'm on the crowded, stinky bus in Tempe, Arizona and I end up wit this lady next to me who has like six-inch gnarled toe nails literally sticking out through the fronts of her shoes. Of course she looks like Ma Kettle without teeth, but DAMN! I was so freaked out, I bought an expensive-ass parking pass at ASU the next day!

Thanks for the laughs!