Re: The Paris Trip: Carmela's "Join the Club"

Just in case anyone cares:

when Carmela walks through the church in Paris, there is a group of French pupils sitting there, listening to a priest.

This is what he is saying:

"...what is the use of believing in God? To me it seems you cannot say that it serves a purpose. It's not like a car that is used for driving to school, whose use, in turn, is learning. This is like asking: what is the use of loving, of being loved? Love, ... "

...then it's barely audible, it might go along the lines of "its use is Good... and if that changes one's life..." but I'm not sure.

Here's the French:

"...à quoi ça sert de croire en Dieu? Pour moi, on ne peut pas dire que ca sert à quelque chose. C’est pas comme une voiture qui sert à voyager en école, qui sert à apprendre. C’est comme si tu demandais: à quoi ça sert d’aimer, d’etre aimé? L’ amour, ...[...ça sert à bien... e si cela change la vie...].."


Re: The Paris Trip: Carmela's "Join the Club"


Thank you for translating what the priest said.

Any chance you could help me with some other translation? The one thing that I'd very much like to know is the sign that Carmella and Rosalie saw. It read as follows:

"Ici est tombe pour la liberation Le 20 Aout 1944 Le Fort des Halles Francois Martine."

There is some discussion about it earlier in this thread.


The rest of this is not very important. So don't bother if you don't have the time.

At one point, Carm walks past a place (a bar, I think) with a sign that shows a pig. The sign reads "xxxx Couchon". I know that "couchon" means "pig". Bit I'd like to know the rest of the name of the bar. Any chance you know what the sign said?

Also, could you tell me what the waiter says to Carm when he describes her food? I'm curious about the part that had something to do with "shell". How close did I get to the correct translation in the thread called The French Waiter? I took the following extract from the thread, "The French Waiter".

"He told Carm that she got some kind of duck in honey and lemon sauce. ... cunard (duck) cuisee (cooked in some way) a son gousse (in its shell) jus (juice or sauce of) de miel (honey) du citronee (lemon)."

Sorry, I didn't understand a couple of words after cuisee so I'm not sure what "shell" he meant.

</p>Edited by: <A HREF= ... plishak</A> at: 5/23/06 5:36 pm

Re: The Paris Trip: Carmela's "Join the Club"

Another thanks for Montefalco for translating the French. It's actually a key passage that most of us will not get. The episode is heavily laden with religious imagery and references (Roe's prayers and candles, Mrs. Leotardo's lectures on Catholicism and gays (not to mention her Catholic Mothers' group), the statues of the virgin (mentioned in another thread, including the statue visible while Phil lies awake at the end). What is the use of believing in God? "It's use is Good...if it changes one's life." Now we'll see whether Carm uses her belief for Good, and how it changes her life if she does.

The next-to-last episode in each season is usually pretty heavy, and I think this one was, too. I had no problems at all with the filming done in Paris, as what went on there transforms Carmella just as profoundly as the coma transformed Tony. I suspect we won't see how these two "transformations" mix until next season, but perhaps we'll get a preview on June 4.


Re: The Paris Trip: Carmela's "Join the Club"

Edith Piaf is wonderful.

OK there is SO much to explore here and wonderful, stimulating posts. It will make going back and rewatching the Paris scenes that much more enjoyable.

So this is pretty elementary I know, but Carm's relative lack of material consumerism in Paris really underscored how this was her 'Join the Club.'' I was quite struck by this in my first rewatch.
She had that huge wad of cash - and yes she does make reference to hitting the stores and getting a 'Kelly' bag (which I have a separate thought about, but it belongs in the speculation thread) --
but we never saw her hitting the stores. did we even see her with a lot of shopping bags? I don't recall any.

Carm was truly tapping into her higher self, IMO. (her eternal -'other name' or nameless -- self?) quite a contrast with the Carm we've seen of late

FOMW brought up the store at the end of the trip -- Guerlains, a seller of cosmetic/beauty/skincare products. But Carm didn't window shop for such 'cover up' products, instead she's drawn to the relief sculpture overhead (which had a whimsical/knowing/guardian angel-like quality, IMHO) the next cut is Carm's eye being drawn to the beacon.

we've seen before the strong (transcendental?) impact that art, particularly images of the madonna, has on Carm (Carmela crying while in the museum with Meadow in S3)

I regret I can't seem to find better words to flesh this thought out ... but it seemed as if Carm was picking up strong messages from the images she was drawn to in Paris. they seemed like guides of some sort (not just in the expressions of the images themselves, but also something about the way the scenes were framed)

Finally, I found it interesting that the notion of all the worry being 'washed away' caused Carm anguish. almost like she would prefer, at least as of now, to hold onto the worry because it keeps her grounded and distracts her from facing the reality of an existence in which worries (aka: sins?) are 'washed away'


Re: The Paris Trip: Carmela's "Join the Club"

FYI, I've corrected some geographical errors in my first post.

Saint Eustache Cathedral is the Church Carm visits.
Au Pied de Cochon is the resturant Carm takes a picture of. Very nice transition back to Satriale's.

This one was killing me but I'm positive Carm's dream was shot at Palais Royal Jardin.

Fly, the store Carm stops in front of is Guerlain, a cosmetic company. I think we'll all agree that the bust above has more meaning.

Ok, I'm done. Hopefully, the brians here can use this information.

</p>Edited by: <A HREF= ... store>Pork Store</A> at: 5/24/06 8:14 am

Re: The Paris Trip: Carmela's "Join the Club"

The sign...:

<blockquote>Quote:<hr>"Ici est tombé pour la libération Le 20 Août 1944 Le Fort des Halles François Martine."<hr></blockquote>

'Here fell, on August 20, 1944, for the liberation, Francois Martine, market worker.'

-- fall as in "die in war".
-- liberation: referring to the French Résistance guerilla-fighting the German occupation forces.
-- market worker: is actually not correct at all as I don't know the right word in English...:

"Fort des Halles" is a term that describes a professional. It's an official person that is responsible for commercial activity at a (produce) market; like the cataloguing of goods being brought to and sold on a market. He has a certain police-style, official authority. Maybe that would be a "market sherriff" in English or something?

The term has an interesting etymology. It originally referred to some kind of ugly stone building near Les Halles ("The (Market) Halls", what used to be Paris's greatest food & produce market until, I think, the 1960s). So, then, it meant "Fort" as in English "Fort" (fortified building).

Only later, in the 19th c., it shifted meaning and was used to label people delivering / unloading carts to the market. So, then, "Fort" was understood as "strong", another meaning of "fort" in French. So, le "Fort des Halles" - "The strong guy of the market", so to say. After that, the current meaning evolved (see above).

It's an extinct profession today, as markets have changed quite a bit during the second half of the 20th century.

(Sad they got him on August 20: on August 22, the final battle for Paris began. By August 25, Allied troops and Résistance forces had managed to drive the Germans out. As a side note, Hitler had ordered the complete and ultimate destruction of Paris before the retreat - people, buildings and all - , which the German local commander-in-chief in Paris, appalled by this insane request, ignored. Not that this has to do anything with anything. ;-))


Re: The Paris Trip: Carmela's "Join the Club"

<blockquote>Quote:<hr>At one point, Carm walks past a place (a bar, I think) with a sign that shows a pig. The sign reads "xxxx Couchon". I know that "couchon" means "pig". Bit I'd like to know the rest of the name of the bar. <hr></blockquote>

"Au pied de cochon": The Pig's Leg. It's a restaurant-bar-spectacles-tourist-trap kind of place.

edit: sorry, it's actually the "Pig's Foot". <img src= ALT=":\">

I guess the sign reminded Carmela of Satriale's.

Also, could you tell me what the waiter says to Carm when he describes her food? <hr></blockquote>

:-) I don't know by heart, but I'll listen in when rewatching ok?

</p>Edited by: <A HREF= ... tefalco</A> at: 5/24/06 10:38 am

Re: The Paris Trip: Carmela's "Join the Club"


Thanks very much. It was incredible that we got so many pieces correct but couldn't figure out how to put them together.

I'm guessing that if there were such a thing in English, we might have called him the Market Overseer or Market Overlord.

Pork Store,

Some great pictures. I enjoyed them very much. Who'd have figured they'd name a bar "The Pig's Leg"?

</p>Edited by: <A HREF= ... plishak</A> at: 5/24/06 8:50 am

Carmela and Rosalie

During their stay in Paris, Carmela surely does experience a certain consciousness expansion.

Coming face to face with a place full of history such as Paris, or all the masses of ‘cold stones’ that constitute “history”, she becomes aware of life being ephemeral in essence. It dawns on her that a New Jersey mobster’s wife, however wealthy or convinced of her own importance, is not very likely to leave any significant trace in the oceans of time.

This new insight is working inside her. Yet I don’t think this is a sign of impending redemption. To me it looks like more or less the same as with Tony. His NDE, as well as Carmela's Paris, are indeed influential, but do not cause the fundamental changes some would hope for.

Despite Carmela’s insights she is still very much herself “in that Carm typically continues to waver between the hard-edged materialist and the principled Catholic wife (...)” (ObservingEgo).

Carmela’s character is multi-faceted, but, as most characters in the Sopranos as well as in quite a number of real people, a big part of her is just a selfish hypocrite living in almost constant denial.

I felt that she was kind and sympathetic to Rosalie, her coarse yet good-natured companion<hr></blockquote>

In my opinion Carmela wasn’t quite so kind. She is all flashed by and overwhelmed with the tickling, romanticist “it all gets washed away” feelings that are so new and exciting to her that she is far from seeing anything else than her own ego. Now that she has experienced that personal little glimpse of Eternity, she just can’t wait to interview Ro about how it feels having actually lost a son.

The point is: she is simply curious about it, not compassionate.

I am surprised that nobody else so far mentioned the utter cruelty Carmela shows in that sequence.

Had Carmela acted out of friendship and compassion towards Ro, as she stated, she wouldn’t have brought Jackie Jr. up in the first place. She would have silently marveled at the fact that Ro is still able to cope, to enjoy life even, after all she had to go through. Carmela would have been there as a good listener - but only when Rosalie would wish to discuss these intimate and painful truths.

Instead, Carmela imposes herself onto Ro out of sheer curiosity, now that she stopped to think for once and discovered these exciting new, oh-so-profound feelings.

And this goes all perfectly well with Carmela’s depiction throughout the series, I think.

She indulges in her own hypocrisy. Think of her relationships with the priest and with Wegler (those, of course, being pathetic hypocrites as well). As long as everything goes along with the way Carmela chooses to perceive herself, all is fine. The moment she doesn’t get what she wants, she turns pretty nasty. Tells the priest some painful truth about his behaviour. Dumps Wegler. Think of how she threatened that teacher back then. How she still takes Tony’s money without hesitation and keeps asking for more.

Carm and Tone once threw this at one another: “You equal love with money!” Now, when she gets the Louis Vuitton bag full of cash, her reaction is: “I should tell you more often I love you...”.


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