06 Aug

Qu’est-ce que ça veut dire?

Qu’est-ce que ça veut dire? What does it mean?  During my first semester of French, this phrase somehow got stuck in my head.  And because I was new to the language, I had no idea what it actually meant.  So then I’d ask myself, “What does it mean?”  These two questions ran around in my head a lot.  And then I found out that the second question was just a translation of the first.  Yea, so that happened…

But sometimes I wonder about myself.  I wonder if this is normal.  Or that is normal.  I wonder what it all means.  Like somehow this totally mundane decision I just made is evidence of something deep and meaningful inside me.  So what if I don’t go into the express checkout line with 11 items?  The sign said 10, not “10-ish”.  I’m a rule-follower, no bigs.  And so what if I felt guilty when an employee told me to go into the express checkout?  This is normal human behavior.  I’m fine with all of that.

But do you suppose it does say something about me that anytime I see a rule that says “don’t touch” or “don’t put your hand here”, I really want to see what will happen if I do?  Qu’est-ce que ça veut dire? It just seems so inconsistent with the rule-follower described above.  What does it mean?

(On a somewhat related note, there’s this guy at work who puts notes on things that he doesn’t want people messing with.  He writes “Do not touch” followed by his name on the same line.  It reads something like “Do not touch Joe”.  We tease him about his missing punctuation, and then he usually adds an exclamation point to the end of it, as though that will fix it.  Punctuation jokes are funny.)

There are lots of things that are totes inconsistent about me.  Like how I’m very particular about lots of things, but not at all in the kitchen.  I like my toilet paper just so (over, if you’re wondering), and I get upset if people stack dirty dishes incorrectly (one of my more charming quirks, I’m sure).  That said, I just got my first set of measuring spoons about a month ago (thanks, Mom).

I’m not fond of measuring, in general.  (Why dirty measuring cups/spoons when you don’t have to?  Not having a dishwasher certainly makes that question impossible to answer.)  In fact, if it weren’t for you, I’d never document anything I make, and I would, therefore, never be able to make them the same again.  And I rather like that I use this blog more as a recipe book for myself than anything else.

I’m learning how to measure, and I really do want to encourage you to figure out how not to measure.  There’s a totally reasonably place to hang out somewhere in the middle, I’m sure of it.

… but mostly, that was just an excuse to tell a funny punctuation joke.  Oh!  P to the S…

me: knock, knock
you: who’s there?
me: to
you: to who?
me: no, no… it’s “to whom”.

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