January 24, 2013
I love my kids' education at the French American school here in San Francisco. Among other things, it's made them so much more sensitive to language and humor. Today, I asked the kids if there was a French word for a whiteboard. They said that everyone just calls it the "ardoise," which of course is like continuing to call a whiteboard a "blackboard" in English. ... My 8 year old son replied, "How about "blardoise," which I'd say is the perfect adaptation.
August 27, 2012
The background on that whole crazy "locks on pedestrian bridges" thing: Symbols of undying love — though not in the view of Parisians — adorn Pont de l'Archevêché, in front of Notre Dame. ... On some of the city’s most iconic bridges, thousands of visitors left small padlocks, neatly attached to the metal railings. Once discreet, doing their deed at night, visitors soon acted in broad daylight, in pairs, photographing each other in front of their locks, and videotaping the throwing of the keys into the Seine. ... One night about two years ago, someone cut through the wires and removed all the locks on one of the bridges.
...Such a font of conversation topics, from the madness of crowds, the meaning of love, which side of the bridge is more popular and why the choice matters, and if there was any symbolism to the bike locks we saw chained in front of the ecole maternelle near our house.