Fantastic read! Well put, Uncle D!
Enjoyed your post Nonc...
To go along with some of your observations, here are some words of wisdom from "hot pepper" the Les Blank film on Clifton Chenier:
"Be what you is...if you old and ugly, BE old and ugly...be what you is..."
No reflection on you Nonc...or me (ha!)...the words always come back to me and make me smile because they are very simple, but there is something very true and very deep about them. Humans get into all kinds of trouble trying to be things that they are not...botox, debt from trying to keep up with the Joneses, jealousies of things other people have that you think you more rightly deserve...that simple advice goes a long way..."be what you is..." Simple advice, but honestly, it is hard to live!
Ya brought back a dandy memory there Chris.
As a teenager in high school, I got up one morning and found Pop Mason in the bathroom shaving.
I was sorta smart-eleky in a non-threatening way, back then (perhaps still).
"Dang Pop, You sure are UGLY"
I caught him off guard and thought he would nick himself and start bleeding, but he was cool as cucumber.
'Son, you're right... I am ugly. But lemme tell the advantages of being ugly you don't quite understand. I don't have to waste time and energy trying to look like a pretty boy, like you!'
He grinned at me with that dang shaving cream on his face, and it was kinda spooky for some strange reason.
It did not take but a split second to register what message he was sending to my smart-eleky mind. He took his time shaving, while I was laughing my fool head off.. and he would not let me in that gad dang bathroom, knowing I had to Pee! So here I am doing the wee wee dance in the hallway thinking I am going to explode, and that old boy nudged up to that mirror, took his sweet time and continued doing his shaving thing, while having the last laugh!
It's good to be Ugly, and, old is not so bad where there are a gob lessons obtained in life.
You really ought to save a lot of these stories that you have taken the time to write down on this board. Collect them together and call them "what life taught Nonc D" or something like that and it least publish it on your on website...if not in a newspaper column, or book. It's good stuff!!
Well, I started to stay out of this one, but couldnt resist.
Let me preface by saying that I am both intrigued and delighted that "outsiders" take an interest in our music, to the point of wanting to play the music and come visit. This site has pointed that out and I wouldnt have otherwise believed it.
I read and reread the post I believe in question. My personal interpretation of it was apparently a little different from some. I saw Mr. Greeneyes as pointing out an irony that has been pointed out before, not as a put down, or to whine about an old festered wound. The irony of the fact that once upon a time Cajuns were made to feel inferior for speaking their native tongue and their culture, and now it has become somewhat hip and in vogue. I may have misread it, but that is the way I understood it.
I truly dont know of anyone who hasnt gotten past this former injustice. I am truly regretful that they were so effective at making Cajuns feel ashamed, that the language (and a large chunk of the culture) will have pretty much have disappeared once the baby boomers are gone. I also know of no one who doesnt appreciate the fact someone takes a respectful interest in their culture. As in any group, there are probably the minority out there somewhere who find the negative, but I think it is small, and not worth considering.
Though I will not get into the "Cajun" or "Creole" labeling thing here, because it is far too complicated to be solved on a forum (or maybe anywhere), I do disagree with only saying those who use the language on a regular basis are Cajuns. To me, though language may be the heart of a culture, the culture of a Cajun is far more. It also includes a way of life, music, and traditions. But, sadly, I see some of these things slowly going the way of the language. In spite of that, I think rural Acadiana will be different from the rest of the USA for a long, long time.
So, I for one, appreciate any interest in our culture, language, or music, whoever it is, and wherever they are from, and everyone on this board who plays a small part in keeping something that is special to me and many others, alive. For that I am thankful, and would graciously help anyone in any small way I can.
yea..i cant resist any longer either
i interpreted cajungreeneyes post as a "put down" to people outside of La. that come down and enjoy our culture and music..he said.."Do you know that they used to punish my aunt and mom in school for speaking their native cajun french. Now everyone wants to be a Cajun and we are gracious enough to share our culture with the world"....after reading this i replied with.. we are "lucky" that people come down spend their hard earned money in La....... then he replied and confirmed what i interpreted by calling me an idiot for saying the cajuns were "lucky".
i have ran across a few cajuns that have this same mantra and backward mindset..but its ok.. to each his own though..i just want people to know that not all cajuns think this way and that a majority of cajuns love to share our culture with people from outside of La., tourism is a valuable part of La's economy right now and has been struggling since the hurricanes..attitudes like this dont help.
i too appreciate any interest in our culture, language and music. and being a displaced cajun knows how it feels to try learn the music and language from the "outside".
Know what you mean Chad. Like you, I moved out of La., though I have my regrets, what it did do is show me with clear glasses what we have there. I am beginning to think every Cajun should leave for a while, maybe then things wouldnt be taken for granted and allowed to slip.
yup...the old saying.." ya dont know what ya got till it's gone"...i definetly took it for granted...lots of wasted time for sure.. now i'm scrambling to recover anything i can
That's so true. When you're far away from your country, or your native area, for a long time, you become aware of all the things you love and couldn't do without.
And look at all these outsiders (from Germany, Netherlands, United Kingdom, France) who love and play your music :
AAAAAAAaaaaeeeeee!!!!!! on that Christian.