I’ve discovered something slightly alarming about myself. Remember how I discovered the Colin Firth on my shoulder when I do my Phonetics homework? I’d like to introduce you to my Angel of Music… I mean, my Angel of French.
His name is Jean Pièrre. Often when I am lost in a train of thought or my Semantics and Pragmatics teacher begins to tell the same story for the 5th time, I enter this zone of non-thought. That’s when he comes to me.
J’ai commis…Tu as gagné… J’étais…
The words never have any real meaning, they are just usually different conjugations of verbs: past tense, imperfect, future perfect, or past perfect. It’s never loud enough for me to be truly distracted or to fully comprehend what French words I’m thinking, but if I’m lost in my non-thought world for too long, I find myself lulled in a weird French trance and when I come out of it, I sometimes respond to a question in French. I wish I were kidding.
I don’t want anyone to think that I’m developing another stress disorder (goodness knows that one is enough!). My brain has a funny way of helping me overcome challenges. For instance, when I had to memorize all of the major scales on my clarinet last year, I found myself unconsciously fingering the most difficult scales while walking around campus or even talking to a friend. One person finally pointed out, “Why are you constantly tapping your fingers?” I don’t really know why I do it! It happened when I was learning how to type well in fifth grade and was trying to remember the placements of the keys on the keyboard. I would be sitting anywhere and be constantly typing the order of the alphabet.
Don’t get me wrong, it has its perks! I absolutely hated the F# scale on clarinet; how many sharps could there BE in one key? Gracious! After a few days of my weird habit, however, I could play it with ease. It’s now one of my favorite scales to play!
I hate conjugating verbs in French, especially trying to decide between the imperfect and the past tense while telling stories. I feel that my brain summoned the Angel of French to help me get over this period of hatred I have towards the French language. It’s kind of an eerie feeling, like my subconscious is whispering French words to me while I’m sleeping. Like a stalker or a creep who wears a mask and kills actors in an opera house in Paris so that I can get the best roles in the opera. Is he helping me? We’ll see when I get this last test back! Until I cross this valley of misery that is French class, I have a feeling he will always be here in my mind, mon ange de Français.
It frightens me.