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Safer Jam ?

+3 votes
Feb 2 in Fun & Humor ☻ by Marianne (18,487 points)
edited Feb 2 by Marianne
Safer jam (English/French) - from BBC Languages - sent by Stephanie:

When I first arrived in France I was living with a French family.

One of our dinner conversations was about the differences between French food and American food.

I wanted to express just how fresh French food was compared to American food which contains lots of preservatives. Not knowing the correct translation for 'preservatives', I just said the English word with a French accent.

Well I was very pleased with my comment but I didn't quite understand the dead silence that followed ... that is until later when I found out that "préservatif" means 'condom' in French!

So, basically I was saying that Americans eat jams, sandwich spreads and other foodstuffs with tasty condoms in them! What a lovely impression I must have made!


3 Answers

TheOtherTink Feb 3

Wait a minute  "Préservatif" CAN mean preservative, depending on context, although "conservateur" might be better in the food context.  :ermm: :) :D

In English, a man might say, "I used a safe to protect the family jewels," with a similar, if more slangy,  misunderstanding. :O :blush: :ermm: :angel: :) :D

Lol, T(h)ink, yes, there are some older definitions (mainly referring to medicine, such as remedy):


The pun is "fantabulous"!


:blush: :blush: :blush: :) :D

Rooster Feb 3

I love it! :D :D :D

Marianne Rooster Feb 4

Lol, Rooster, and that is not all ...


Virginia Feb 3

Well Marianne, to go back to "American" food, that had a totally different meaning in my parents' generation! Our food was very different, mostly home-grown in garden plots or from nearby farms. 

As time went on, I can even recall my father commenting that the taste was synthetic...he did not like all the modern packaged foodstuff, but now that is the standard American fare...

Virginia, when I was little, I used to love Campbell's chicken noodle soup, which had/has about 900 mg of sodium per serving. :O  Not that I paid any attention to sodium in those days, but I did add extra noodles when I made it, because I thought there weren't enough of them in the can.  :P

Virginia Virginia Feb 3

Tink that is funny! ...and poignant too...a child's non-judgmental way of assessing and addressing the situation at hand...<3

Marianne Virginia Feb 4

Oh yes, Virginia, I remember well these times, when local vegetable farmers sold their freshly harvested vegetables, fruits and homemade products on market days.

@ Virginia and Marianne,  :) <3

Virginia Virginia Feb 4

Marianne, what I remember from childhood is the family outings! Come the autumn, we would go out to the local farms and purchase a couple gunny sacks of peas, corn, flats of strawberries, etc. and the whole family would spend a Saturday blanching and freezing all this! 

My father had a pickup truck, and we would load in the whole family (i.e., me and my brother) for a trip across the Cascade Mountains to the warm fertile desert in Eastern Washington, irrigated from the Columbia River, for boxes of peaches, cherries, apples, apricots and then rush home for more days of canning...or going into the mountains to pick blueberries. 

Lots of wilderness around my childhood home, and we picked wild Cascade blackberries, tiny and time-consuming but they make the world's best pie and jam, I am the huckleberries...

Food tasted very different then!

I'm sure Woody Guthrie would have agreed, Virginia.  :)

Virginia Virginia Feb 4

O'Tink!!! Oh yes, the patriotic days of yore...this song you posted? Well, at either Bonneville Dam or Grand Coulee Dam (maybe both) there is a history of how it came to be written...

The US government was apparently not quite sure how the WA/OR populace would receive all this impoundment of their great river, so they hired beloved Woody Guthrie to write as many songs as he could in thirty days, all lauding the great dam, propaganda! And he managed a song every day, thirty in all, for which he was paid the handsome sum of $200...the song below being the most famous of the lot...(this all from long-ago memory, so could be some details off).

Roll on, Columbia roll on...Roll on, Columbia roll on...Your power is turning our darkness to dawn, Roll on Columbia roll on. This is the same YouTube channel as your song, I wonder if he has posted all thirty?

Marianne Virginia Feb 5

That must have been wonderful, Virginia.


Virginia Virginia Feb 5

Marianne, although my family did not have much money, yes, in hindsight we were wealthy in other ways. Food-gathering and preserving was turned into a family outing for fun...

Marianne Virginia Feb 6

Lol, we were, on our side, also working hard, economising and wealthy in other ways ...

Virginia Virginia Feb 6

Marianne, you and I were born at the end of a terrible world war, and we grew up in a magical time, the decade after that war when hopes were high and renewable...

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