Thursday, June 5, 2008

Parlez-Vous La Vache?

le moo Early in my relationship with Andrew, he related a story to me about his Aunt. She was a feisty lady, who was a school teacher & goat rancher & one of those tall red headed ladies who speak with a drawl and epitomize "Texan."

A crazy peripheral relative (Andrew's former sister-in-law) who worked as an accountant at an oil company was asking the Rancher Aunt Geneva about her cows. It was a stereotypical Texan conversation, really-- the rancher talking to the oil company employee-- sounds like the setup for some kind of joke, really.

Anyhoo. Sister in law says: "But aren't those kinds of cow really stupid?" To which Aunt Geneva replied, "Well, Ah don't know, but Ah Taught mahn to speak French." (My rendering of the accent sucks but I want you to know... read this with that Texas drawl. Think that movie No Country For Old Men).

Andrew & I used to laugh about this, the idea that SOME cows were stupider than others. Don't get me wrong; I think it's quite likely that cows are very sweet animals. But they aren't the brightest animals on the food chain. And I can just hear the comeback. Sister in law was trying to act smart about something she just didn't know anything about, and ended up being the butt of one of those jokes. I wouldn't be relating this joke now if it weren't for the fact that crazy sister in law is being a bit of a butt, herself, and it's on my mind how annoying family can be. This way, I can think, instead, of the funnier moments rather than the irritating ones.

So the next time you're having a grilled something or other, you can wonder if this is a French-speaking steak. (Does that come off wrong? Oh, how could it really come off right is probably the better question.)


slyboots2 said...

My mother's cows are stupid and mean. Must be a Montana thing. I am afraid of them. Obviously I didn't grow up on the ranch- that came much, much later.

And if they spoke, I imagine them saying things like, "gonna stomp you to death, you person, you." "Feed me before I eat the paint off your truck, you person, you."

Anonymous said...

"I'm a kill you. C-I-L-L, kill you!"

I'd be grumpy too if my species was engineered to go straight to the abbatoir. Or, perhaps we are.