Last Saturday in French class, I got to be a waitress asking for orders in a flirty voice. Here were my lines:
Bonjour mademoiselle, bonjour monsieur! Vous avez choisi?
D’accord…et comme plat?
Ça vous a plus?
Ah, désolée, il n’y a reste qu’une glace. Je vous recommande de mousse au chocolat!
As always, it was easier to be the service person because I was only asking questions half the time. My classmates, however, relished the idea of complaining in French (“Le bœuf bourgignon est très gras!” “Il n’y a plus de tarte, il ne reste que des glaces…quel restaurant!”). To which my teacher laughingly replied, “Ah, on ne peut pas plaire à tout le monde!”
The lesson got me thinking: do the French really complain a lot? Not that I should be worried since it’s hardly likely that I’ll end up a waitress in France (I’ll let you know if that happens), but somehow I’ve heard a lot of stories from friends and acquaintances. And then, there’s that article about the French being the world’s worst tourists, which sounds a bit appalling. So far, though, the French people I’ve met have been very nice and polite. They’re quite generous with compliments, too.
Oh well, to this I say: I’d rather not judge. Personally, I’d rather complain about my food than continue eating something I don’t like, anyway.
On another note, complaining in French feels good sometimes, especially if you like to window shop. My friends Kitty, Ken, and I love to mutter “c’est très cher!” particularly when we’re in Zara or Nine West. The best part, of course, is that nobody understands that we’re actually complaining.