Who doesn’t remember the iconic 90’s pop band B*Witched? Wait….almost no one? Ok, well, let me remind you. This Irish girl group won our hearts with age-old lyrics like “I’ve got a house with a window and doors” and “get it on, riding in our rollercoaster”.
But of all the lyrical gems that B*Witched gave us, the one I have taken most to heart here in France is “c’est la vie” or, in English, “that’s life”. The following is a list of occurrences that have caused me to shrug and utter this phrase more than once:
- When you inadvertently ask your theology professor if he has ever taken opium: c’est la vie. Opium was actually in the context of the conversation (you had to be there) and I’m still not completely sure what I asked. All I know is he responded laughing and saying that he had never taken opium before. Who knows though, it could have been one of those Billy Madison “no I will not make out with you” kind of things where he was just messing with me. This will remain one of life’s greatest mysteries…
- When French waiters/waitresses always tell you the price in English, even though clearly numbers are the easiest thing for you to understand, c’est la vie. Side note: I don’t know why, but it seems like no matter what country I am in, I become best friends with the proprietors of food places/general businesses. In Wisconsin, this means the occasional free “X-Rated” t-shirt (from the liquor store–wish I was joking). In France, it so far means nothing but a wave every now and then. I’ve got three months to get a free tshirt out of them though!
- When you put your trash in the wrong place by mistake, and your crazy landlady consequently goes through the trash to figure out whose it is, then comes up to your room to yell at you: c’est la vie. Ok, for this one, “c’est la vie” might have been accompanied by a few choice words that I will opt not to write on here. But seriously….going through people’s trash?! My only consolation is that there was a really gross old banana in there. Take that, crazy landlady!
See guys? I have been able to weather all these storms with the use of a simple phrase. So from now on, if life gives you crappy lemons that you would rather throw away than try to make anything out of, just say “c’est la vie.”