Tag Archives: cajun french

Cajun Smurf

Because it’s Thanksgiving, I won’t go into a whole lesson. Instead, I’m going to share a cute little clip my sister-in-law showed me. Someone went and made a Cajun Smurf. Yup, like we didn’t have enough smurfs already.

Anyway, I thought it was cute and would probably give y’all an idea of what a true, thick Cajun accent was like. If you have any questions about what he’s saying, ask and I shall interpret!

Happy turkey day!

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Cajun French: Nerveen

I’ve been lazy about Cajun French lessons, but I’m going to fix that. Honest! The excitement from yesterday actually made me think about today’s word. The nomination for my two books made me feel a little crazed and well, this word.

Today’s lesson is pretty quick. Nerveen (may not be spelled correctly, but pronounced exactly like it’s spelled here ner-veen) means someone is fidgety or nervous. You’d say something like She’s/He’s nerveen.

See? Easy peasy! Well, unless you’re talking about my family. You see, if there’s one thing we all have in common, it’s what I’m going to call leg-shaking syndrome. Yes, leg-shaking. You know what I’m talking about. You’ll be talking to someone at a table and all of a sudden the table starts bouncing because they’re shaking their leg so much? That doesn’t happen to you?

It happens in this family. In fact, when everyone gets together (if we can find a table big enough to fit us all), you’ll feel the floor vibrate because 90% of the people at the table are bouncing their legs. Some of them, like my aunt, bounce their legs to help them go to sleep. Now I don’t go that far. I just rub the top of my foot against the sheet over and over and over…you get the idea.

This doesn’t technically mean they’re nerveen…or maybe it does. Hm. I’ll have to ask around.

How about y’all? Do fidgets run in your family?

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Cajun French: Pishnik

I’ve noticed a lot of people have found this blog through word searches for Cajun French. If you’ve just joined the blog because of my Cajun French lessons, welcome!

Remember that book party I had back at the end of September? Well, the attendees were kind enough to share some more Cajun French words with me. I saved them in my phone and promptly forgot about them until this weekend. I was holding baby Bennett and we were once again discussing nicknames for him. They’re very important, you know.

Anyway, I was holding him and staring at his cute little face and thinking he was just a tee-niney thing (tee-niney is a phrase we use here for itty-bitty). I’ve always wanted to nickname someone Flick. Flick sounds quick, sharp, with a little sting, right? Well, that’s when I remembered I had these awesome new Cajun French words on my phone. I pulled up my notes and there it was: Pishnik, (pronounced how it’s spelled). It’s Cajun French for flick.

Of course now I’m using the word for something sweet and wholesome, but at the time (you know, an erotic paranormal romance book party) the conversation went something like this:

Hostess: There’s pishnikwhich means flick.
Me: Pishnik? It sounds dirty, like “Oh my god, he pishniked me all night long!” or “I would love to pishnik.”

And yes, now I’ve changed my mind. I can’t use this word for my nephew. Maybe I’ll just call him Flick. There. That doesn’t sound dirty, does it? How about y’all? Have y’all pishniked anyone lately? *snickers*

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Cajun French: Chu-Chut

I’d completely forgotten this word and it’s one I’ve used many times in my life.

Chu-Chut (pronounced exactly how it’s spelled, only fast), is a thingamabob, a doohickey, a whatchamacallit. It’s a thing you either can’t put a name to, or have no idea how to describe it. I don’t know about you, but sometimes I can’t remember what something’s called. It could be an everyday item like a stapler, or something more exotic.

Of course having a word to call something doesn’t mean I avoid coming up with my own name for it. I remember being in fifth grade and helping a second grade teacher decorate her bulletin board. I wanted to pull the staples out and instead of asking for the staple remover, or a chu-chut, I called it a staple-puller-outer. Needless to say she found that highly entertaining.

She probably wouldn’t have known what I was talking about if I said chu-chut anyway. Unless I mimed removing staples. Maybe that’s why we tend to know what someone’s talking about when they say chu-chut. Cajun French would be nothing without hand movement. I have mentioned before how we talk with our hands, right? It adds a whole new layer to the language and helps give listeners context clues as to what in the hell they’re talking about.

So what do you call chu-chuts? Do you call them thingamabobs, thingamajigs, whichimadiggies? I’m interested in your comments!

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Cajun French: Buchon

Another fantastic thing about the book party last week is I was able to learn more Cajun French words to share with y’all.

Today’s word is Buchon pronounced “boo-shawn” (soft n). This means to nod off to sleep. You know what I’m talking about. You’re so tired you look like a bobble head because your head dips down and you jerk it back up, then it falls back and you jerk up again. Over and over until you either succumb to the sleep, or you force yourself awake.

The thing is unlike saying “nodding off” buchon is used like “he’s doing the buchon“. It almost sounds like a dance the way it’s said, like they’re nodding their heads along with the music. Maybe that’s how it started? Because if that’s the case, I’ve done the buchon at every rock concert I’ve ever gone to which is why I always end up with whiplash afterwards.

I hope none of you are doing the buchon while reading this post. *sniff* So to keep you awake and interested, I found a great clip of a little girl doing the buchon at the zoo. Hope you enjoy!

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Cajun French: Ayeee

Uh, so I spent a long time trying to find an example of this, but didn’t have much luck. The Urban Dictionary says this means “what’s up”. In south Louisiana, this is kind of like a “wow!” or a yodel kind of thing.

It’s so hard to explain really. I just know that it’s terribly embarrassing if you’re graduating and your dad sends out this “AYEEE!” at the top of his lungs in a mostly quiet auditorium. *cough* It’s sort of similar to a yodel because the “a” part is a bit lower in octave and then it climbs to a higher pitch at the “e”.

I guess you could say it’s kind of like a cowboy’s “yeehaw” or a whoop since most of the time the “yodel” is used to express excitement. Just won a game? AYEEE! Kid’s graduating from high school/college? AYEEE! Just had some really good crawfish? AYEEE! You get the idea.

Now, I did find a clip of a commercial where the AYEEE is used, but the quality isn’t the best. You have to turn your volume up high to catch it. Meanwhile, I’m going to see if I can get a clip of my dad doing his AYEEE and play it for you in the future.

AYEEE!

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Cajun French: Pis au lit

It’s Thursday and I couldn’t be happier unless it was actually Friday. It’s been a long, drawn-out week. I’m ready for my weekend and some time writing.

But that isn’t what today is about. Today I’m talking flowers. Well, one flower in particular. There are these little yellow flowers my mom said not to pick because they’d make me wet the bed…funny, huh? Well, I don’t think the golden rod has that power, but the name we use for it kind of sounds like it might. Here we call golden rods pis au lits (pronounced pees-o-lee). I’ve also heard it called the pee-pee flower *snickers*

As a kid, everything came out sounding like swear words. Pittsburg was Pissburg. Pis au lit was piss-o-lee. What can I say? When I was five, I wanted a reason to swear.

It’s kind of funny, but the pis au lit does have medicinal benefits. Apparently, herbal practitioners use this weed in tonics to counter inflammation and irritation caused by bacterial infections or kidney stones. It’s also been used to aid in the cleansing of the kidney/bladder. How’s that for Mom being right?

It makes sense that the people who came here would find a use for the flora they discovered. I just find it hilarious that its use and Cajun name kind of go together.

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Cajun French: Pooh-Deein

Okay, I’ll be honest…I don’t know if this word is really Cajun French, or if it’s a bastardized Cajun English word. I picked it because after spending time with my godson last week and over the weekend, I heard it so many times, I had to use it.

Now, according to the Urban Dictionary, pooh-deein (pronounced pooh-dee) is a word used to describe something overgrown, like a car with a lot of grass beneath it. I would translate that to mean trashy, or junk. My nephew and his friends though, use the word to describe each other’s X-box 360 skills.

Aw, man, you pooh-deein!

I asked him what he thought it meant and he said it means you stink. I suppose it could work as well. Used the way he and his friends use it, it could go either way.

I have a feeling I’ll be using this word a lot tonight. The Saints are playing against the Packers and they’ve been pumping up the fact that it’s the last 2 Superbowl winning teams playing in the first regular NFL game of the season. I’m nervous. I’m worried the referees will miss something important…in which case I’ll be screaming at the television…

Aw, ref, you pooh-deein!

I’m tempted to tell my brother-in-law that. Did I mention my sister, brother, brother-in-law, nephews, my cousin’s husband, and I are playing fantasy football? Yeah well my BIL sent out his first bit of smack talk of the season and guess who he’s playing against? Yup, me.

His fantasy QB is Aaron Rodgers and his fantasy defense is the Saints. Hello? Conflict of interest! His defense will be working against his quarterback and vice versa. I told him he’d better hope his defense doesn’t do well, otherwise he’d be the one crying like a little baby…or something like that. *sniff* He’s pooh-deein.

 

UPDATE:

I just heard from my Cajun French speaking informant who has never heard this word. He said what he thinks the kids are trying to say is pourri which means “rotten”. It would be pronounced “poo-ree”, which is close enough, don’t you think? Those poor kids. I knew they were bastardizing something! LOL

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Cajun French: Boucherie

It’s been a crazy week! Today is day 4 of my blog tour and I’m over at Deep In the Heart of Romance (http://www.deepintheheartromance.com/) with a guest blog and excerpt of Ain’t No Bull. There are giveaways going on as well at Laurie’s Thoughts and Reviews (http://lauriethoughts-reviews.blogspot.com/2011/08/aint-no-bull-by-danica-avet-interview.html), and an excellent review and giveaway over at Close Encounters with the Night Kind (http://closeencounterswiththenightkind.blogspot.com/2011/08/giveaway-and-review-of-aint-no-bull-by.html). Sorry for the long URLs, my wordpress is hating me lately. *sigh*

Anyway. How many of you watch No Reservations with Anthony Bourdain? I don’t normally. Oh, sure there was a time when I had to watch it every week, but I moved away from it after a few seasons. This week though, I simply had to watch. Why? Because Anthony Bourdain was in Cajun Country. Serious Cajun Country in a little town called Breaux Bridge, The Crawfish Capitol of the World.

Here’s a clip (the opening of the show):

Anthony got to experience a real Cajun boucherie (pronounced boo-sha-ree). It’s a pig slaughter, simple as that. What isn’t so simple though, is the process. The entire set-up has to be perfect and families who’ve worked together years have it down to a quick and easy process which has the pig slaughtered and butchered in a matter of minutes.

It doesn’t end there though. Every part of the pig is used in some recipe whether it’s grattons, hogshead cheese, boudin, stew, bbq, or sausage. I’ve only been to one boucherie and I didn’t have to experience the entire process. I just got to eat really great food. (Have I mentioned how much I adore grattons (cracklins))?

What I loved about the show this week though, was that America got to see something we take for granted here. Ready for it? The men cook. Yup, you heard me right. One of the people in the show even said that. Men in south Louisiana love to cook. And I don’t just mean stews and barbeques and seafood boils. These men are taught by their mamas, or their daddies, to make extravagant dishes using old family recipes and don’t tell them they’re doing it wrong because they will argue with you!

I never really gave it much thought, but Anthony Bourdain pointed it out that none of the people are professional chefs, yet they all know what they’re doing, or point out what someone else is doing wrong. It made me laugh because I’ve heard way too often a couple of men talking like this:

Mais, you call this spaghetti?

Hey, I don’t have the right spices!

I’ve made a spaghetti over here and it didn’t come out like this.

If you think you can do better…

Get the idea?

How about where you’re from? Do men get into deep conversations about ingredients and the proper way to make anything that doesn’t involve a grill?

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Guest Blogger: Fallon Plaisance

Hey y’all, I’m so, so excited to have a very special guest today. *blush* I’ll admit, I’ve been in love with this man since the first time he appeared in Ruby: Uncut and on the Loose. *fans herself* Today we have Sin Den Master (leader of incubi), Fallon Plaisance! *squees!*

*flutters her eyelashes* Fallon?

Merci, Danica! Thank you for the warm welcome. Hello, everyone. Comment ce va? Danica tells me she has been teaching you Cajun French. *smiles* I’m so glad. The Cajun French language and heritage is very close to my heart.

I’m not actually a native of south Louisiana. I’m originally from Ireland, but I moved here oh…well, it was so long ago, I can barely remember. I do remember though that I fell in love with south Louisiana. The food, the people, the weather, it’s all perfect! I set up an incubi den here and we’ve been um…entertaining women ever since. *wink*

So imagine how horrified I was when I was asked to check on my friend, Izzy, in Wyoming of all places. Wyoming! *mutters in French* Did you know it is cold there? Bitterly cold and of course that’s when ma fouine, decided she had to be exiled from her tribe. *mutters more* Snow! There was snow all over the place and a very angry taureauthere. I think he might have wanted to kill me. And why? Because I’m an incubus and much better looking than he is.

Um, Fallon? You do know Izzy and Grant will read this, right?

Mais, yeah, cher! I count on it. I love to rile them up. Taureau is so gone on ma fouine, he can barely see passed his septum ring. *laughs* Ah, it makes me happy to see Izzy shaken up. She is such a wild one, always doing outrageous things that she will not let others very close to her. She thinks I do not notice, but I do. She is a good girl, a sweet woman, but she’s also tête dur. Mais, sometimes I think she is asking for trouble and this time she got it.

That taureau is going to catch her, mark my words. He is just as tête dur as she is, maybe more because he is a bull, yes? Or am I mixing him up with a jackass? *laugh*

Fallon!

*laugh* Danica, she is the peacemaker, always trying to keep us out of trouble. Pauvre bête! She does not realize that characters in books will behave the way they want to and not the way the author thinks they should. *laughs and blows a kiss at Danica* I must go and check on Izzy to see if she has murdered Grant yet.

*sigh* I do love that incubus…Oh, sorry y’all! LOL Um, Fallon is quite the charmer *blush* So um, did you happen to catch the Cajun French in his post? I’ve been holding onto a signed copy of Ascension by Sable Grace since June and I’ll give a copy to the person who can correctly translate all (or most of) the French used in the post today.

Tomorrow we’ll have the lady of the hour, Isola “Izzy” Malone on the blog for Fantasy Man Friday. Let me tell ya, that woman knows her fantasy men! *fans herself*

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