Philosophical Swill II

Ah, the French. I spoke of them, and I speak of them now, and probably will again in the future. They loved my organic philosophical swine and swill. The thing was, they spoke similar swill in to the ears of my loving swine. My little swine was so joyous to hear it that he shit in their cafés and bistros, enthusiastically, right on the floor, out of mere conviviality.
The French were delighted. The funny thing was, completely aside from the shit, that I had the feeling they didn’t understand a word we said. We spoke English, except I started by saying bon soir out of politeness. Thereupon they assumed we understood their language. They spewed a thousand French words in to my ears in a never-ending torrent. The fact is that I was hardly able to explain my philosophy to them. I must admit that I even understood a few of their words, because I am such an astute fellow, but nevertheless it was rather trying. It was a typical case of humans not communicating at all and believing that they understood each other perfectly. Perhaps we did, though. I threw in an occasional „oohlala“ and „c’est bon, eh?!“, and the conversation lopped along like a bear on vacation.
In any case, at some point my swine disappeared, and though that made me somewhat uneasy, I decided to roll with the blow. I drank „some“ wine and „some“ pastis. The communication got better and better, it seemed. I may even have drunk some French schnapps, though I can’t imagine anyone making schnapps aside from the Germans, or perhaps, on a stretch, the Dutch. But what do I know. I woke up in the morning next to a young French girl stuffing a pain au chocolat in to my mouth. She gave me coffee as well. Damned good coffee, those French, but, I couldn’t help asking her, where the fuck was my swine?
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„Oohlala,“ she said, lit a cigarette, puffed on it artfully, as the French are wont to do, and gave English her best.
„Your, eh . . . – how do you say? – piig, has gone on a soirée, eh . . . il veut faire parler de paris pour les années à venir! Do you know, eh . . . how long you have slept, ma coeur?“
Oh fuck, I thought, so much for philosophy. So much for measured days. That’s what I get for flying to Paris with an organic swine. I thought we understood one another. You fucking pig, I thought.

Speak French

Although I speak two languages really, really fluently, I still envy people who speak French. I don’t, although I love the sound of it. To me, it’s the most beautiful sounding language in the world. I do understand one word or another, so much that, years ago, as I was visiting friends of my parents-in-law in France, they thought I understood everything. I made an appreciative, affirmative noise here and there, and replied at least halfway appropriately in English or German, and suddenly they started talking to me in rapid-fire French, assuming I had it down, at which point I was totally lost. Oh, well.
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Speak French. It is a beautiful language, it deserves to be perpetuated.
And listen to Zaz.
EDIT: And (thank you, Marissa, for reminding me) read French poetry from Verlaine and Rimbaud. Read the translation you understand, if you don’t know French, and then read the original, just to get a feeling for it.