bilingual bêtise

© Jessie Kanelos Weiner
© Jessie Kanelos Weiner

Jumping on a one-way plane to Paris and submitting to a year of lingual humility was my way of learning French.  Although I have mastered everything except for the French art of negotiation, my bilingual brain is continually at a loss for words, my speech peppered with long pauses and tortured hand gestures.  With my brain tuned to Franglais, I have started translating from French to English, leaving me with a strangely proper speech pattern.  Is this one of the proven benefits of bilingualism?

Nevertheless, here is an imagined conversation between two expats inspired by my bilingual bêtise:

A. How do you go?

B. I go well.  I am enchanted to finally meet you!

A. Would you like to take a coffee?

B. Yes, it would make me pleasure.

A. I know a bar in the Marais which is quite agreeable.  The prices are correct for the neighborhood. Although the music is strong, it is the most interesting option.

B. Yes, that has a sympathetic air.

A. What do you take to make pleasure?

B. I am feeling greedy. I will take a chocolate good and hot, if you please.

A. I must go.  Embrace your boyfriend very strongly for me.

B. It made me pleasure to see you!

A: Salutations!

. . . . .

 Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest


  1. Sequin Cat says:

    Frankly, Franglais is not evident!

    Totally, totally get the above (imaginary) conversation. I can’t remember how to speak English either!

    Adventures of a Sequin Cat

  2. Bryan totally used globally in conversation the other day, made me laugh! Also we tend to use ‘normally’ incorrectly too 🙂

  3. thefrancofly says:

    Globally, I assure you.

  4. Yep, like Sandy this seemed pretty normal to me too. Sigh.

  5. Danielle says:

    Haha, this amazing! And so accurate! <- I say the latter based on my own expert level of franglish 😉

  6. thefrancofly says:

    You and you only.

  7. thefrancofly says:

    It makes me pleasure, Maria. 😉

  8. thefrancofly says:

    It needed to be done!

  9. thefrancofly says:

    Ha! I completely forgot about those two.

  10. bryanpirolli says:

    Globally, this is a problem we all have — profit from these experiences! 😉

  11. this is amazing! i am still laughing!!

  12. Maria Bergman says:

    Oh yes, French so lyrical! Thank you for this…and your wonderful blog!

  13. Makes perfect sense to me!

  14. haha! SO TRUE!

Leave a Reply