Monday, March 10, 2014

On Being Armenian in Paris

Is this story apocryphal?  Marash Girl thinks not; she was told the story many years ago by a group of young Armenian men standing at the gate of the Armenian House, Cité Universitaire, speaking French and Armenian to each other on a sunny July afternoon in Paris.  A translation follows.

"So we were all standing here, chattering away in Armenian, telling jokes, and every time we came to the punch line, the black fellow across the way would start laughing.  We continued telling jokes, but  at every punch line, the black fellow would laugh.  We said to each other in Armenian,  "Who is that guy?  Every time we crack a joke, he laughs at the punch line. Is he crazy or what? (Khent e gam inch? Արդյոք  խենդ է  կամ ինչ?)

"On cue, the black fellow across the way called over to us in fluent Armenian: 'Ես ալ հայ եմ… Yes al Hay em! I'm Armenian, too!'"

1 comment:

  1. Heille Selassie, the Ethiopian monarch, adopted, i believe, @ 500 armenian orphans following the genocide of 1915. this man may very well have been progeny from that adoption.