Saturday, March 03, 2007

Tales from the TTC*

*TTC: Toronto Transit Commission

6:42 p.m. EST

I get on the northbound train for home, my backpack filled with groceries and other bits of shopping, and sit down. The train starts moving and as we pull into Rosedale Station, I hear a familiar tune emanating from a cellphone.

"Allison Dubois!" I think. "Her phone is ringing."

But just as quickly, I realize that Allison Dubois is a character in a TV series (albeit based on a real person) called Medium, which I watch every single week. Please note: Allison Dubois also has a French name.

I turn my head, and see a strapping young man open his cellphone. He listens, then says:

"Mais c'est où?" (But where is that?

He listens some more, and repeats his question. Finally he hangs up. As he does so I catch his eye.

"Vous êtes perdu?" I ask. (Are you lost?)

He looks startled, then sheepishly says "Non, pas du tout." (No, not at all)

To my right, I hear adolescent voices. Kids making silly jokes. I can't help laughing at one of them. Whereupon, one kid says to the other: "Elle a tout compris! (She understood everything)

By now you're saying, Did she say Toronto??

Yes, Toronto. Not all francophones live in Quebec!

Also in the train, a young soldier. I'm relieved to see he's in green fatigues, not desert fatigues. May be be safe always.


  1. I watched "Bon Cop, Bad Cop" last night -- It is a film set in Montreal and Toronto and is presented in English and in French (with subtitles)It was so amusing - with the language jokes, and very Canadian. And a bit violent. (if you haven't seen it, Colette, I'll lend it to you)
    My daughter was in a French Immersion School. Sometimes her friends speak in french when they don't want others (like parents)to know what they're talking about. They don't realize that I understand most of what they say. I just keep that skill to myself. Knowledge is power. LOL

  2. David was telling me quite a few Canadians at the conference in Toronto spoke French, even though they didn't live in Montreal.

    And I echo your wishes for the soldier. xo

  3. Martha, I saw Bon Cop Bad Cop as soon as it came out (last year) and blogged about it. I loved it, especially the in-jokes!xox

    Tara, it's as it should be -- we're supposed to be a bilingual country officially! xox

  4. I love how you observe conversations around you!


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