Friday, July 23, 2010


Today I went back to the 10th arrondissement to visit my favorite old men. First stop was my Savate teacher at my old boxing school. I hadn't called him since dropping off the face of the planet months ago and I missed being made fun of by all the old men at the school so I picked up some of my favorite tarts as a gift and paid a little visit. Upon entering, my teacher smiled a wide grin and said "PAS VRAI!!!!" (NO WAY!!!)
"OUI VRAI!!!" I replied wholeheartedly.

After giving him a giant American hug and explaining my giant belly, we sat down to catch up. When the topic of whether I am having a boy or girl came up, the convo went like this (in French...)

TEACH: Is it a boy or a girl?
ME: Almost certainly a boy.
TEACH: AHHHHHH, felicitations!!!
ME: Yeah, I am very happy. (pause) The women are difficult.
TEACH: Ah yes, very difficult.
ME: TOO difficult.
TEACH: Of course....
ME: I like boys.
TEACH: Clearly.
ME: The women make like WAAAAH WAAAAAAH (wild hand gestures)!!!
TEACH: (nodding seriously) Ah yes, ah yes.....

Apparently I suddenly hate women in baby language. Lately I have found myself saying things that makes absolutely no sense to me or anyone around me. I don't really know what I meant by "the women make like WAH WAH" and I am fairly certain my Teach had no idea what I meant either so we just let it go at that......

After catching up with all my favorite old dude boxers, I went to my favorite Indian market up the street to stock up on supplies. The owner Raj never remembers my name but instead calls me New York. He learned English while working on a Texan steamship from 1972-1978. He has three kids and still loves his wife after 37 years. He told me the key to a happy marriage is to tell your wife she is beautiful every day. (He's right.) As I was leaving, we had the following convo (in English)....

RAJ: WAIT! YOU WILL BUY MY MANGOES! (he declares with a raised finger and ushers me to a large stack of boxes where he delicately selects a box from the middle)
ME: (laughing) Oh really? I will?
ME: How much are they?
RAJ: 5.90
ME: How come the sign says 3.50?
RAJ: Oh no, those are for other mangoes. Those mangoes are BAAAD. You will NOT buy those mangoes. Very bad, VERY bad. (opens a box to show me some sad looking shriveled up fruit)
ME: Then why are you selling them?
RAJ: I am not selling them to you, YOU ONLY BUY THE BEST MANGOES!
ME: OK OK, I'll buy a box. But they BETTER BE GOOD. IF NOT.....
RAJ: Yes, yes, I know, New York comes to find me and finish it.

I laughed so hard that tears came to my eyes as I promised Raj that in my current state I wouldn't be hunting him down and that the only thing I would be finishing are his box of best mangoes (which, consequently, ARE the best mangoes I have tasted in a long time).

I so heart old dudes.


Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you're back. I've been lurking for a good long time now and I really missed your insights, humor and the chance to vicariously live in Paris.

KFD said...

aw thanks!!!!!

GinaMarie said...

"I'm not selling them to you" -- I love French logic! C'est pas tes oignons, non?

Haven't been here in a while, but I'm glad to see some new posts AND that you are obviously doing so well!!!