Linnie McCallister told Kevin, “You’re what the French call les incompetents,” and it was at that point that I knew I needed to use foreign words to make people feel inferior to me. Unfortunately, through my years of Spanish, calling people “loco” and “estupido” wasn’t doing the trick. They didn’t have the sheer elitism that I needed in order to really sound like a dickhead.
Enter: Le French.
Now, I’m not going to trash the French. Their food is delectable, their architecture is divine, and their international jerseys are fresher than Whole Foods produce section mid-June. But there’s something about their language that really makes you say, “Damn, that motherfucker is really talking down to me right now.” And I fucking love it.
Which is why I’m going to start cycling these words into my everyday vocabulary in order to make people think, “This dude really thinks his shit doesn’t stink, doesn’t he?” And they’re right, because my shit smells like the stinkiest bleu cheese you’ve got – and I mean that in a good way.
I don’t even care if I use it correctly. It’s literally the least of my worries because people will be so taken aback by the fact that I have the sheer confidence to drop it mid-conversation that they can’t do anything but respect me.
Meaning “in relation to” or “with regard to,” you’re going to hard-pressed finding me using any other word while making plans. “We need to go over our cocktail hours plans vis-à-vis the rest of the group,” I’ll start, “But I don’t care if we meet up with them either way.”
Nothing exudes luxury like dropping “après ski” while wearing a pair of Persols coupled with a cashmere turtleneck sweater. But once you start attaching it to other words? That’s when people really start to think you’re a pompous asshole, which is exactly what we’re going for here.
Après-brunch. Après-work. Après-yoga. Après-motherfucking-everything.
When something’s no longer fashionable or out of date, you’re likely to say, “That’s so last year.” But that’s only if you’re a Minor Asshole™. We’re talking Major Asshole™ here.
“Ugh,” you comment after taking a sip of a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, “Her destroyed denim is so passé.” You’re pretty much putting whoever you’re talking to into a fucking gold-plated casket while spitting shitty merlot onto their gravesite. If you whisper that while someone steps away to use the bathroom at a nice dinner, you’re pretty much ending their social life until next year.
Everyone, and I mean everyone, has gentrified this word with the spelling “bougie” or “boujee.” Myself included. Therefore, this can solely be used in iMessages, email, and written letters. We’re all using it incorrectly anyway, but if you’re spelling it “bourgeois,” everyone will at least think you’re using it right. If you toss it out after rinsing with your bidet, watch your calendar fill with party invites and galas.
There’s no better way to make someone feel unsophisticated and socially awkward than by using a word that literally means “unsophisticated and socially awkward.” It’s perfect. Someone isn’t holding their pinky out while drinking their San Pellegrino? So gauche. Sarah was shaking during downward dog at yoga class? Gauche. Waiter accidentally spills some of your Châteauneuf-du-Pape while pouring you a taste? Can you even be more gauche?
And next summer? Stuffy Italian words, because everyone knows French is for the les incompetents. .
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