June 27th, 2003


Brown Out

What's one of the surest signs that summer has arrived?  Is it the three days of sweltering heat and humidity that we've enjoyed?

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Multinational Apple

One of the doctors, D, brought his kid (3-4 y.o.) to work today.  J, who is a curious little fellow with a lot of personality, amused us for a good part of the morning.

J's parents are French-English bilingual.  (At least daddy, if not mommy too, is from Montréal.)  They are raising J to be bilingual as well, and to have an awareness of other cultures.

D's technician, H, who is Chinese, was in the office with us.  J had a toy apple with him, and D asked H how to say "apple" in Chinese.  "Pingua."

D turns to J and says, "Do you know how to say 'apple' in Chinese?  It's 'pingua'."  Then he repeats the same exercise with me in Spanish.  "See, 'apple' in Spanish is 'manzana'."

Now it was J's turn to educate us.  D asked him, "How do you say 'apple' in French?"

Did he answer "un pomme" as his daddy expected?  Of course not!  Rather, in the best snooty French accent you can imagine, he blurted out, "ah-pul."