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Watermelon Red and laundry on the line reminds us of summertime. Photo (c) Kristin Espinasse
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P.Q. (pay kew) noun, masculine

    : papier queue (toilet paper)

In Comments:

hi : maybe PQ is papier- cul (au lieu de papier queue) Q is the phonétic " word" for cul in this case. best regards. jean-marc (english student)

Thanks, Jean-Marc!

Audio File & Example Sentence: Download WAV or MP3

Qui, parmi nous, quand il n'y a plus de papier queue va chercher le sopalin? Who, among us, when there's no more TP, goes and gets the paper towels?

A Day in a French Life...
by Kristin Espinasse

You know the saying: "What goes around comes around". "Around," one might add, like a roll of two-ply toilet paper....

You remember those low murmured high jinks, played out as a kid? Well, where I grew up we had toilet paper in our arsenal of "farce-inal".

We called the bad deed "TPing." (not "T-Ping" as in "I Ching"—would that we sneaks were not so unerring—no such thing! " TPing" as in the verb: "to tp"—the adjective a "tp'd" house.  Let's see, what would that make the noun... a teepee? No, that would be a Native American structure made not of two-ply paper, but peau... I dunno.)

Forget grammar, let's get back to our "goes around comes around" story.  Yesterday was pay back day for the farce I played on friend of a friend, Margo, years ago. Truthfully, it wasn't at all my idea to toilet paper her yard... her orange tree, or the buissons that lined her home's entry... No, peer-pressure pushed me to it...

Never mind adolescent intimidation—for it is useless to try and get sympathy from the correctional Powers That Be. Those Payback Powers That Be disguised themselves, recently, as our four-month-old puppy... whose new favorite "toy" is, can you guess?, TP...

...or papier queue, mind you. But back to minding me... those Powers That Be came back to correct my former "farcery," this via a flurry of chewed, soggy TP.

Indeed, I woke up the other morning with a start... and reached the escalier in time to witness the last perforated square float gently down to le rez-de-chaussée.* Our kitchen, our hall, our living room... all were quilted with a layer of lavatory paper.

I watched, mystified, as the last square of "two-ply" landed like a feather before my very eyes. With that, the Powers That Be (disguised as no other than our prankster puppy) put a new two-ply twist on an old saying to which I now get the gist:

What goes around comes around... with the help of a karma-keeping canine.


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French Vocabulary

une farce (f) = practical joke; la peau (f) = skin; le buisson (m) = bush; le papier queue (m) = toilet paper; un escalier (m) = staircase; le rez-de-chaussée (m) = ground floor

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A Day in a Dog's Life...
by Braise and Smokey

Smokey says: Forget toilet paper... I'm going to "petal" the parquet, "flower" the floors... and spread snapdragons everywhere—joie de vivre galore!

First, however, I think I'll eat one or two... wouldn't you?

Photo taken December 11th.

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