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Old 01-30-2019, 11:29 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,947 posts, read 27,360,351 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2ner View Post

One thing French-speaking Cajuns say to each other is mon nèg, meaning 'my man'. However, etymologically speaking nèg is the n-word in English. Cajun French speakers have a very salty language. .

I knew they said that, but was slim on the details.


I was tipped off by this song by singer Jimmy C. Newman, from Mamou, Louisiana.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RcPJCoq1io4


Lâche pas la patate, mon nèg'
Lâche pas la patate
Une chose est claire
C'est mon affaire


This song was a huge hit in Quebec and Acadia in the 1970s. I remember some of my uncles had 45s of it. It's familiar to most everyone over 40 here and even to many younger people too. The expression ''lâche pas la patate'' is also very commonly heard, as in "don't give up my friend".


Since the singer's pronunciation is not very clear, a lot of people I suspect don't even know the word "nèg" is in the song. Very often you hear people sing it as "lâche pas la patate mon mec".


"Mec" is a European French term similar to "guy" or "dude".
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Old 01-30-2019, 01:03 PM
 
Location: DC metropolitan area
632 posts, read 287,350 times
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Louisiana doesn't produce the likes of Jimmy Newman anymore, which is a real shame.
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Old 01-30-2019, 01:24 PM
 
Location: DC metropolitan area
632 posts, read 287,350 times
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Here are some more Cajunisms:

Cajuns use mouiller instead of pleuvoir for 'to rain'. The expression, mouiller des petits nègs en or (lit. 'to rain little golden nègs') means to be raining cats and dogs.

An orteil de nèg is a black walnut (lit. 'nèg's toe').

The expression, suer comme un nèg à la messe, means to sweat a lot or to feel completely out of place (lit. 'to sweat like a nèg at Mass').

To try to tie this post back to the OP's Caribbean focus, couche-couche is a dish made of cornmeal dough that is sweetened with sugar and fried brown. It was borrowed from black slaves from the Caribbean.
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Old 01-30-2019, 01:37 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,947 posts, read 27,360,351 times
Reputation: 8603
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2ner View Post
Louisiana doesn't produce the likes of Jimmy Newman anymore, which is a real shame.
Is he relatively famous in the U.S.? I wouldn't know him if it weren't for that song - and I actually had to look him up. Probably 99% of people who know the song here in Quebec wouldn't be able to name the singer.
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Old 01-30-2019, 01:39 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,947 posts, read 27,360,351 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2ner View Post

To try to tie this post back to the OP's Caribbean focus, couche-couche is a dish made of cornmeal dough that is sweetened with sugar and fried brown. It was borrowed from black slaves from the Caribbean.
Any relationship to North African couscous? The names just seem to close for there not to be...
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Old 01-30-2019, 01:43 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,947 posts, read 27,360,351 times
Reputation: 8603
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2ner View Post
Here are some more Cajunisms:

Cajuns use mouiller instead of pleuvoir for 'to rain'. The expression, mouiller des petits nègs en or (lit. 'to rain little golden nègs') means to be raining cats and dogs.

.

Mouiller for raining (pleuvoir) is also extremely common slang in French Canada.


As in: "il mouille à plein ciel".
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Old 01-30-2019, 01:47 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,947 posts, read 27,360,351 times
Reputation: 8603
Quote:
Originally Posted by aab7855 View Post
, for example the word for car in Cajun French is chariot (carriage). .

That's funny.


In Canadian French, the (slangy) word for car is "char". Which has a similar meaning: chariot or carriage.


"Char" is actually one of the more (in)famous Québécismes in France.


Occasionally, people in France will ask us: Is it true that you guys call a car a "char"?
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Old 01-30-2019, 01:49 PM
 
Location: DC metropolitan area
632 posts, read 287,350 times
Reputation: 730
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
Is he relatively famous in the U.S.? I wouldn't know him if it weren't for that song - and I actually had to look him up. Probably 99% of people who know the song here in Quebec wouldn't be able to name the singer.
Yes. He was well known in the States in Country music circles and in his day.

Last edited by 2ner; 01-30-2019 at 02:15 PM..
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Old 01-30-2019, 01:50 PM
 
Location: DC metropolitan area
632 posts, read 287,350 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
Any relationship to North African couscous? The names just seem to close for there not to be...
Sounds like it.
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Old 01-30-2019, 02:15 PM
 
Location: DC metropolitan area
632 posts, read 287,350 times
Reputation: 730
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
Mouiller for raining (pleuvoir) is also extremely common slang in French Canada.


As in: "il mouille à plein ciel".
Cousins.
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