Tuesday, April 14, 2009

American speak

A children’s clothing store in Saint-Germain:

Milk on the Rocks

You’d think I’m obsessed with store names. A little bit, I guess. But more than that, I think that the Parisians are naming their boutiques in English taps into a larger trend.

It used to be that the French abhorred English. It was like pulling teeth getting them to speak it. In my few weeks here, I’ve noticed many people (definitely my colleagues, but also waiters and people out in streets) are eager to test-drive their English skills. With the infiltration of American music and movies as well as a younger generation who has learned English in school, it’s simply more accepted to speak English – indeed, it’s a notch in your belt if you do.

I also think the Finger in the Nose v. Milk on the Rocks names are indicative of the uptown/downtown dichotomy of the two neighborhoods (Saint-Germain = uptown, Marais = downtown).

1 comment:

  1. It is also because Obama has been elected and therefore America is once again cool...