And I guess that's because when I first moved back to LA in 2008, I was really tuned in to the odd things we say and the way we say them.
After living in Texas and Missouri for a combined dozen years, it was fresh to my ears. Now, it's comme ci comme ça. Not something I think twice about.
Except recently when a co-worker asked me if I had my ass on my shoulders like so-and-so did and I was absolutely, totally confused.
I replied that my ass was firmly (or not so much) where it should be, but thanks for the concern about my anatomy.
She had to explain to me that this phrase was similar to "boude," which in Cajun French means pouting.
Then I started noticing the "funny" things my Cajun co-workers say. The things I was taking for granted.
Envie -- (awn vee) a craving.
Mais las! I got an envie for some rice and gravy, yeah!
Mais las -- (may lah) literally means "but there," what we mean: look at that, I can't believe, my goodness
Oh, mais las! Pauvre bête!
Pauvre bête -- (pawv bet) poor thing
Pauvre bête. She was sick as a dog last night over all that tracas.
Tracas -- (tra cah) trouble, a mess
Pooyie! I don't need no more tracas. I'm goin' to da house.
Have you noticed that we mix French and English?
We think nothing of it, cher.
Use double negatives?
We don't think nothing of it, no.
(Yes, that's a triple...lagniappe!)
My all-time favorite Cajun word...
Canialle -- (Ka-nye) sneaky, sly
Like me. Or I'm told.
And like this drink.
Because it tastes all blueberry and sweet and jammy.
But, mais las! It'll knock you down and give you some tracas.
The Husband put it together. We debated what to call it. It was a heated debate that left some boude, and some with the red ass (on her shoulders).
Canialle Bleu Cocktail
(Sneaky Blue Cocktail)
8 oz vodka
8 oz blueberry puree, strained to remove skins if desired
3 oz lemon juice
2 oz simple syrup
Add all ingredients to a pitcher and stir or whisk to combine. Pour into glasses and add ice.
Makes 21 oz.
* for blueberry puree: Add about 1 1/4 cups blueberries to a blender and puree. Pass through a sieve to remove blueberry skins, if desired.
* for simple syrup: Combine 2 parts sugar to 1 part water in a saucepan and stir. Bring to a boil. Store sealed in the refrigerator--keeps for several weeks.
More Cajun talk...
In the past...