Cajun French: Colloquialisms

I’m starting to scrape the bottom of the barrel for my Cajun French lessons. Well, actually today will be a Cajun English lesson, so I should’ve titled it Cajun English. Eh, whatever.

There are a lot of things said here that can be confusing. I’ve already mentioned “Get down” which means to get out of your car and visit with someone. It does not mean to dance. Other little phrases are used in everyday language and most of the time we don’t realize we’re saying them.

“Make groceries”:
Whatcha doin’ today?
Oh, I have to go make groceries.
We’re not literally making anything. It means we’re going to the grocery store.

“Hahn? What’d you say?”
It’s our version of “huh”. It’s hard to explain but it’s a nasally sound with a flat a and a silent n. We say “huh” as well, but this one is more commonly said without us realizing it.

“Save your toys”:
Company’s comin’ over, go save your toys.
This does not mean the child’s toys are in danger, it means pick them up. We also use “Save your clothes” as in pick them up so they’re not wrinkled/messed-up, etc.

The doctor says I have to use the threadmill for twenty minutes a day.
Obviously they’re using a treadmill.

Just put the dishes in the zink.
It isn’t a strange new element, but the kitchen sink. This one used to drive me crazy when I was a kid.

Do you want a Coke?
Sure, what kind you got?
Coke, Pepsi, Dr. Pepper…
Coke is every soft drink there is. I have no idea why, but that’s just the way it goes.

And for Star Wars fans, we had “Dark Vada” and “Light saver”:
Dark Vada was killed with a light sava.
Yeah, you know that isn’t what it’s supposed to be.

So those are just a few little things we say that might confuse a lot of people who aren’t from around here but make perfect sense to us. I’m sure I’ll remember some more, so expect another post like this in the future.

Have you ever heard/used any of these phrases?


Filed under humor

15 responses to “Cajun French: Colloquialisms

  1. Coke is the word for soda here too. Drives me nuts. Lol. Love the kitty pic! Some of these are new to me. Fun.

  2. The ‘coke’ thing is also rampant on the west coast. After ordering some McFood, the person would then have to ask me, “What kind of coke, dude?” I would say, “Coke coke.” Perfectly clear.

    Where did you find the disturbing photo of the quad amputee baby cat?

    • LOL, I just did a search for “confused” and it popped up.

      The Coke thing drives me a bit batty as well. Especially when we go to restaurants and you ask for a Diet Coke and they say “We have Diet Pepsi, will that be okay?” Um, no…I want an actual Coca-Cola product.” Meh.

  3. This is great. So, Coke means all soda….interesting!!! 🙂 Love this.

  4. Where I’m from, people say pop for all kinds of soda. That’s always been a little weird to me.

  5. You crack me up- Yep, you must drive thru Alabama to get to Pensacola Beach- I was thinking you might be coming sooner and wanted to stalk you!

  6. KAK

    “Save your toys!”

    Bwwahahaha! I totally hear that as a battle cry during King of the Hill (not the cartoon, the game).

  7. DAD

    I’m from cajun country and the whole “save your toys” thing makes perfect sense to me. Here is a good example, when you go to the bank theres different accounts you can keep your money in. If you plan on putting money away to use later you may opt to use a “savings Account”. You are SAVING money for later use. So if you can SAVE money in a SAVINGS ACCOUNT then you should be able to save your toys in their proper place for later use as well. Does this example help to put things in perspective? I hope so.

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