et patati et patata

Meet "Rif" and "Raf"—a couple of French gastronomes that I met while photographing Roquemaure yesterday... Please share their funny story, below, with a friend... and be sure to check out the comments box to this edition, where readers have been asked to share their favorite potato recipes!


et patati et patata (ay pah-tah-tee ay pah-tah-tah) expression

    : and so on and so forth


A Day in a French Life...
by Kristin Espinasse

I overhear the funniest conversations while photographing these neighboring villages. Yesterday, after a lot of ruckus coming from a window above, I stopped in my tracks... and chanced to look up.

Incroyablement, this is what I heard:

DSC_0105 Rif*: Dude, what's for dinner?

: Patates!

Rif: But we had patates last night...

Raf (showing a slight distasteful look reserved for "commoners" a.k.a. "Plebeian Pigeons"): No, Rifford. Last night we had gratin dauphinois and the night beforethatwe had purée à la truffe.

Rif: And tater tots before that...

: No, Rifford. Our class does not eat "tater tots". We dine on Les Tots de Tator (that's "tah-tor"). It has a better ring. You must keep apprised of the ring of things—and quit talking like a commoner!

With that, Raf strutted off, his feathers decidedly ruffled or ruh-felled, as Raf would have us say.

And Rif... Rif took advantage of a back-turned Raf... to stick out his tongue at the snobby bird—and not miss the chance to get in the last word:

"And don"t forget Friday's fried potatoes in eggs or—as you'd have me say: "frih-tah-tahs"...
Or Thursday's hash browns (or "pommes sautées"—have it your way)... patati et patata! Potatoes today, potatoes tomorr'ah!


*Rif (short for "Rifford"—a name that his "refined" friend (Raf) gave him... for use whenever Raf's around... fancying himself King of the Town.

Raf: (short for "Rafael de Roquemaure" a self-appointed name that this pigeon uses when he struts through the neighborhood, pressing ahead of the simpletons or "Plebs").

Oh, and speaking of potatoes... here is a favorite book of Rif's, one that he finds exceedingly eatingly helpful for his nutritional well-being. Highly recommended! Buy a copy for a sugar sensitive, moody pah-toody friend (like Raf, for example!):

Potatoes Not Prozac: Solutions for Sugar Sensitivity (Paperback). Lose weight, heal depression, and stop cravings. Check out all the enthusiastic reviews, here!

Comments are the Best Part of French Word-A-Day:

Did you enjoy this story? Let me know and maybe we'll bring Rif and Raf back for another laugh! Also, long live potatoes! Today, share with us your favorite potato recipe. If you don't have the recette, no problème, tell us what you love and we'll Google it :-)

French Vocabulary & Sound File
Listen to my daughter pronounce the following words: Download Wav or MP3

incroyablement = incredibly
une patate
= potato, spud
un gratin dauphinois
(m) = a potato gratin with (more or less): milk (or cream) and cheese (such as gruyère) and muscade (nutmeg)
et patati et patata
= and so on and so forth



In film: French postcard: American exchange students come to Paris to study the language for a year...
English Grammar for Students of French: The Study Guide for Those Learning French
Tune Up Your French!
Top 10 Ways to Improve Your Spoken French

 potato recipes The Williams-Sonoma Collection: POTATO

Raclette Grill -- just boil up some potatos... and add toppings to the grill Raclette grill

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Thank you for reading my language journal. In 2002 I left my job at a vineyard and became self-employed in France. "French Word-A-Day" has been my full-time occupation ever since. Ongoing support from readers like you helps keep this site ad-free and allows me to focus on the creative process of writing. My wish is to continue offering posts that are educational, insightful, and heart-warming. If my work has touched you in any way, please consider supporting it via a blog donation of any amount.

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