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Monday, January 20, 2014


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Nirjahr prakash

I think it should be Field day instead of heydey in the example

L'affaire Hollande-Gayet fait les choux gras de la presse étrangère. Foreign press is having a heyday ( should it not be field day) with the Hollande-Gayet scandale.

Eileen deCamp

Hi Kristin,
I love the two photos of the mustard fields! Really beautiful. We have been looking for mustard seeds or plants to fill our empty field. I heard that honey bees love mustard!
I new the difference between "heyday" and "field day" but I guess I knew what you meant in your other post! Have a beautiful day!


Thank you, Nirjahr! Proof I'm having a really hard time straightening out the two terms....

Betty Doolittle Tuininga

Hi Kristin,
I am originally from New England, now living in New York. I have been corrected on my phraseology such as your usage of "heyday" several times in the past few years. It is at most a little embarrassing at age 63, because of have been misusing these phrases all of my life. It also made me realize that the people around me must have been doing the same or were just too polite to say anything! I think the former.

Muriel Teusink

Field Day in many schools is a day of track and field events!

Jules Greer

KRISTI DARLING ...and the beat goes on...missing you..

Love the second photo, I don't think I know the name of that tree, couldn't be plane trees?

Well we all must have made it through the weekend, I'm at the Coffee Cup checking email, still waiting for my computer to be fixed.

I still think you are qualified to teach at the Sorborne (sp?) - everyone would sign up for your class under FRENCH/ENGLISH a DAY. Maybe when Jackie goes to design school in Paris, we could get an apartment and all hang out together. You teach, I'll paint and Jackie can chase her star in the city of light.




Field day, hey day - now I'm wondering just how I've been using these phrases :-). Love the plane trees and mustard field photo. Take me to provence immediately. Do not pass "Go" I just want a "field day" in those fields!!

Sheila in WA State

Charles is partly correct:

heyday (ˈheɪˌdeɪ)
1. the time of most power, popularity, vigour, etc; prime
[C16: probably based on hey]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003

Nancy Cripe

Proof of how well you have integrated French: the use of confounding in the second sentence of this post. Without the influence of French on your brain, I think you would've said "confusing" here! (to confuse=confondre in French). Another example of the many "faux amis" in French and English. You should pat yourself on the back for having integrated confondre so deeply that you made the kind of error a native French speaker would've easily made in writing in English!

David Navarre

Interestingly, if you say "Field day" to someone from US Marine Corps, it means a day spent cleaning absolutely everything. It's cleanliness to the point of absurdity, from what I hear (I never served, so wouldn't know from personal experience).

Sarah LaBelle, near Chicago

I missed that one! Field day is so commonly used to describe the press actively going after a story like this.

And yes, very different from heyday, but I never thought to compare the two words before. This should keep me using them both correctly.

Guess the scandal took up all the space in my brain.

Sarah LaBelle, near Chicago

Oh yes, congratulations on twelve years of this blog. Quite an accomplishment.

Those plane trees -- trimmed the same way as your olive trees? I read the posts at Jean-Marc's link (My Better French Half on the right side of this page), where he explained the method of trimming the centuries-old olive trees on your farm, totally a new method to me, for tending to trees.


Interesting. I would have made the same error. Thanks for the clarification!

Julie Farrar

I never thought about the difference. Don't believe I've ever used either term, but thought they were interchangeable. However, you're so right that the best way to learn your native language is to study a foreign tongue. As for the cabanon, do you have any around Bandol? I miss your cabanon shots.

Joan Linneman

I'm having a field day over this one, but in Kristin's heyday, she can get away with almost anything!
Joan L.

Kent Benson

I’m always curious to learn the etymology of words and expressions. For heyday I was expecting to find something related to farming, such as a reference to harvest time, but no. According to the Online Etymological Dictionary, heyday is a “late 16c., alteration of heyda (1520s), exclamation of playfulness or surprise, something like Modern English hurrah, apparently an extended form of Middle English interjection hey or hei. Modern sense of "stage of greatest vigor" first recorded 1751, which altered the spelling on model of day, with which this word apparently has no etymological connection.”

The etymology of field day is a little more interesting, “1747, originally a day of military exercise and review; figurative sense is from 1827.” I’m guessing the military meaning of troupes on display for the benefit of onlookers was borrowed to connote the current usage: going to great lengths to draw attention to a particular topic, with the added element of poking fun or disparaging someone or something.

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