Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Zoning Out



I wouldn't say I was a dumb blonde - not atall (although I'm not a brain box either), but I do seem to have a slight problem concerning the connection of my brain and my mouth which makes me appear rather bimbo-ish sometimes. Okay, often. Okay, very often.

Today at work I was hanging around the coffee machine, as you do, with a group of colleagues and friends and I suddenly realised we were all in the middle of some kind of random pop quiz. (Before I go any further, did I need to add the word 'random' in there, or does the term 'pop quiz' already imply that it is indeed random, in which case I may have just as well said 'a random random quiz'? Also, is the word 'random' beginning to look like it's not a word at all, or is that just me?)

You see that's the thing about living in a foreign country while you still don't speak the language fluently. You can zone out so easily and tune in thirty minutes later and be completely taken aback because
a) somehow the topic of convo went from the effects of trade deficits on economies to why a crépe is not a crépe unless it's round
and
b) you have been standing there silently zoned out for the past half hour, mulling over what you fancy for dinner and no one seems to have noticed.

Anyway I tuned back into the conversation only to realise that there was some kind of pop quiz taking place and I was being asked a question. "Leensey, this one's for you," the nice man with the stylish glasses but who's name I can't remember because it consists only of vowels said, jabbing a finger in my upper arm. "I have a dream...who famously said this?"

Five french faces turned expectantly towards me and I grinned because I knew the answer. I knew I knew the answer. I did, I just couldn't quite remember his name. And then before I knew what was happening, the words had rolled off my tongue.

"Charles Manson!" I squealed, raising my own finger and jabbing Mr Stylish Specs back.

For a moment there was silence. A horrible, painful silence. And then they began to laugh. Oh how they did laugh, my friends. Big mocking belly laughs. Someone even patted me on the head and said "ah, a true blonde"! I mean really! Morto! Absolutely morto.

"Uhhh," I stuttered, "oh mince! Je suis bete, I meant to say Nelson Mandela!" More laughter ensued and I turned a suitable shade of pink. "No, no that's not it...no, wait everyone, your laughter is putting me off! It's on the tip of my tongue..."

"It was Martin Luther King!" someone said loudly to which I clicked my fingers and proclaimed "yes! Yes, that's it!" And I assure you, lovely readers, that I did already know this, I did, it was just a slip of the tongue, but none of the pop quiz possie seemed to believe me.

Which is why I zoned back out again and mentally wrote my shopping list. After all, if I have the gift of zoning out, when else would be a better time than when you are being pointed and laughed at?



3 comments:

Esa said...

Princesse, my friend! I knew we must be connected somehow. I don't think it's a blonde thing, because I'm brunette, and I swear that kind of thing happens to me ALL THE TIME. I know the answer, but I just can't connect my brain to my tongue. Interesting that Charles Manson was the first thing that popped into your head, though...hmmmm.

Flying to Paris tomorrow...yay!!!!

Le Tigre in France said...

Wow, Charles Manson! I'm sorry but that IS funny, you could have tried to pass it off as a funny joke ! Charles Manson wrote the words 'helter skelter' I think, although maybe they stole it from the Beatles or the Beatles stole it from them, I'm not sure...

T.D. Newton said...

That is pretty funny, but why have a random quiz anyway? Save the quizzes for school.

Regardless, I noticed that they just said "Martin Luther King" and didn't ACTUALLY qualify it as "Martin Luther King Jr" so they're technically not 100% correct. It's tough when you can remember hearing an audio clip or seeing a tv clip or movie clip and the names escape you for whatever reason.

BTW, if you haven't heard the full "I Have A Dream" speech by MLK Jr, I suggest you do a Google search and either read a transcript of it or listen to it live. He was a fantastic orator and it's a pretty inspiring message (even if Europa does have a pretty good grasp of it already and America does not).

I don't know any French trivia, otherwise I'd give you something to try to stump THEM with, but I do know very obscure facts about religion and philosophy and video games.