Tu Down

We scored what felt like a major victory the other day when our next door neighbor gave us the go-ahead to use the informal “tu” instead of “vous” with her. We were doing our usual chat over the garden fence when she said `this is crazy, you don’t have to be formal with me.’ Since she is older and we’re newcomers, it had to come from her. We were thrilled.

Hands still sore from high-fiving, Eric and I went to pick up his wedding ring from the jewelry shop. It’s been months of waiting, repairs and resizing so we’ve become pretty friendly with the woman who sold us the rings in the first place. Let’s `tu’, she said, and then she hugged us as we were leaving.

It was a nice farewell as we were off in the car for ten days in England and Scotland. We have some shows to play but tomorrow Eric’s singing with the Proclaimers at Edinburgh Castle. They recorded Whole Wide World for their latest album Life With You. I find them so inspiring and uplifting. And we’ll get to see our friend Lindsay Hutton which is a treat.

Edinburgh is special for us because it’s where Eric and I had our first date. But we’ve still never had that deep-fried Mars bar he promised me. Maybe tomorrow (though I think they’re only available after 1 or 2 AM). I love Scotland!

But my heart’s in France.

5 thoughts on “Tu Down

  1. Le Tigre in France

    Have a great time across the channel, good luck with the shows. It really annoys me when people I’ve known for ages still use ‘vous’ with me. It annoys me a lot actually, even though I know they are just trying to be polite. My language exchange partner for example, who is in her 60s, still calls me vous and it’s been a few months now…I’m a lot more comfortable with the informal conjugations as well so I definitely prefer to be called tu!

  2. Rosie

    oooh Edinburgh. I saw eh few Castles up there when I worked with Big Country…but that was a while back!Back on the tu and vous…everyone in Music that I have met over here seems to use Tu…whatever their age.But out of that informal sphere, I am starting to get voused more and more as I am getting older, so it’s me that has to propose the tu form. This is complicated by the status of your interlocoteur. For example, if I was chatting with Sarcozy, it should not be up to me to propose the change. So I am shy to suggest it in case people think that I think that I have higher status than them for whatever reason…that should be nice and clear for you then…

  3. OneL

    If you don’t get your fried Mars bar in Scotland, you can get it here in Brooklyn when you play here in September. There’s an English restaurant, The Chip Shop, about 10 blocks or so south of Southpaw which has them.Eliot in Brooklyn

  4. amy

    Le Tigre I was just thinking that the opposite is true for me, for some reason the formal conjugations are easier for me to remember…so I get almost panicky having to tu, even though it feels like going to the next level in the relationship.Rosie, this sounds like the equivalent of being called “ma’am” down south in the US. A sign of respect, unavoidable, but disappointing somehow. Now I want to hear about you and Big Country!Eliot, I’ve heard about that Chip Shop in Bklyn where they’ll deep fry anything…but there’re so many other NY foods I’ll need to eat when we’re there.I missed the tatty scone this time Andy…but I’ll try it in November.

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