Tag Archives: love

Ryan Mikel………

19 Mar

The day I announced my engagement to a Serbian, my mother started quoting lines from Not Without My Daughter.  In case you don’t watch Lifetime-that would be the flick with Sally Fields about a woman who marries a Middle Eastern guy and then can’t leave his country.  Well, can’t leave it without her daughter.

Insert my mother’s irrational fear.
Don’t ask me how she made the connection.  I distinctly remember her referring to the ‘tribal’ nature of Serbs, despite the fact that mine was about as Parisian as they come.

Regardless, during the course of my six-month engagement (no-we will not be diving into further details on that subject), she took to randomly calling me with questions about our future.

I should mention here that when it comes to pronunciation, my mom is handicapped.  So the day she called me to ask how to pronounce my would-be last name, I knew we were going to have problems.  It had taken her three months to stop calling him Lukas (his real name being Luka), so I just figured the surname was going to be a lost cause.

Nevertheless, this is the conversation that transpired between us when she unleashed the Spanish Inquisition on me:

Mom:  ‘Hi honey, just calling to see how things are going.  Say, how do you pronounce Luka’s last name again?  You are going to take it, aren’t you?  Or are you going to hyphenate?  Just want to make sure I can pronounce it.

Me:  (Deep breath) ‘Ok Mom, its Markovic.  Mar-Ko-Vich.

Mom: “Mykarvo?’

Me: “No, Mar-ko-vic’

Mom: ‘Mer-kar-ma?’

Me: ‘Nope, not Merkarma Mom, MAR-KO-VICH’

Mom: (deep sigh on her end) ‘Mary-Kug-vok?’

Me: ‘I have an idea, why don’t we talk about something else for twenty minutes, and come back to this.  Approach it with a new start a little later.

Mom: ‘k, yes, great idea.’

(We continue chatting about God-only knows what for the next fifteen minutes)

Me: ‘Ok Mom, are you ready to try the name again?’

Mom: ‘yes’

Me: Ok, grab a pen.

Mom: “Graaaaaaa-Baaaaaaa-Puuuuuuunnn’

Me: (pinching nose between eyes with one hand, deep sigh of concentration with the other)  “No Mom, Grab. A. Pen.”

Mom: ‘Gruuuubbbb-Aaaaaaaa-Piiiiinnnn’


(thirty second silence)

Mom: (laughing)  ‘Oh Whoops, did I really just do that?’

Me: (shaking head in disbelief) ‘Yes mom, yes you did’

She never did learn to pronounce his name.  God help me if I ever marry a Middle Eastern man.  Scratch that, God help that man.

Paris, je t’aime

2 Mar

I love my daily walks with Indy in Paris.  As a French bulldog, she attracts much attention and I am often stopped and asked questions regarding her age, her health, her snoring, and her general well-being.  Parisians like to check in on her to ensure that the American at the other end of her leash knows how to properly pamper their furry comrade.

For the record, Indy has the best life out of anyone I know.

She has beds in every room of the apartment and she sleeps about 19 hours a day.  Right now for example, she is cuddled up underneath the radiator, loudly snoring on a full-belly.  The rest of the day will include fetch, walks, and a visit to the cafe on the corner where she gets treats for no other reason than being chubby and cute.  She’s doing alright as far as I can tell.

Still, it’s nice to have her as a conversation starter with Parisians out walking their dogs-especially when their pups are other French bulldogs patrolling the city.  This weekend I was stopped by an elderly gentlemen in a suit and a smile on a street in the seventh.  He grabbed my hand, blue eyes twinkling from a face long-ago surrendered to wrinkles and said:

‘My dear, you look just like my wife on the day I met her fifty years ago.  She has owned eight French bulldogs in our marriage.  Your hair, smile, and little dog remind me exactly of why I fell in love with her in the first place.  Thank you for making my day.’

So yes, Parisians might have a bad reputation.  But sometimes an encounter reminds me of why I love the French.

Thanks to you old guy-you made my day.