Speaking with the Natives

HEY. Okay, so I have been studying French for a pretty long time. My progress is slow. Like people at the movie theater who watch all of the credits and then get out of their seats really slowly and then half step their way through the darkened aisle. Do I care? No! I am in this for the long haul. So, do I even take French classes at the Alliance Francaise anymore? No! Do I care? No! Why not? Because French classes are pretty expensive and Memrise Premium is way cheaper.

So, after running a quick profit loss excel spreadsheet, I upgraded Memrise to Premium because there is an option to learn by “speaking with the natives.” I really enjoy these authentic French people. They are super authentic.

There is the French man by the seaside who strangely says “J’ai besoin trouvé une theatre.” His story is that he rolled up as a castaway and now must go see a play immediately. Like, he’s super dehydrated and needs to be in a dark theater where you can only drink water in the lobby. He’s like “I HAVE TO GO SEE CATS THE MUSICAL. NOW. I’ve been in a tiny lifeboat for a 178 days.”

Then there is the guy who says “Allez!” and ducks off the screen. He’s my favorite because he animated his word. Also, I’m like, “Okay, where are we going? And do you have the kind of sunscreen that is good for the water? And did you bring snacks? And are those snacks Cheetos?”

Then, the woman who says things are too expensive. Classic complainer type. Don’t feel like hanging out with her. Also, is she saying this passively, like, am I supposed to pay for both of our dinners? I don’t understand. Je ne comprends pas. I always prefer eating from grocery stores; why did we even go to this restaurant? It was her idea. I think I need to go to the theater now.

Then the woman who is telling me to speak more slowly and I’m like, wait, you’re the French one. Also, why are we in this hat shop? And, now that we are here, I need to definitely get a hat for when I view Lords and Laddles on Netflix. All the aristocratic people have hats, so obviously, me as a home viewer, should have one too. And I just saved a lot of money by walking out of that restaurant and stealing that dinner.

Then, the guy who tells me “Faire attention!” And I’m like, sorry, I thought you were a street performer not my AP History teacher. I’ll get out my notebook, Mussolini. Geez. Coole vacance. I feel so relaxed. Not. Pas du tout. Salut, Severille, comme dit en francais “I was being sarcastic!”

Then, most perplexingly the woman who tells us “Elle a les gris yeux et les cheveux marron.” She has grey eyes and brown hair. Okay? So, you are looking for Virginia Woolf? How many people do you know who have grey eyes that aren’t photographed in Daguerretype photos? Also, tell me a little more about this person; I’m not understanding the relevance here. We were just talking about the stock market. Who is this mysterious Victorian you speak of?

The take away is I love Memrise and I hope one day I will go for a run and someone will ask me to say a phrase like, “You have eaten all my peanuts again” in English. I will animate mine. I will say it angrily and point at them. “Faire attention! You thief. You have eaten all of the peanuts! And they were so expensive! Mon dieu! Trop cher! Et! Vous parlez trop rapidement! Je deteste vous! Vous mange trop toute le temps. All my peanuts! Always! Vous animaux! Porquoi? Porquoi!

Then I will know I have made it. Really made it.



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