J’suis à l’écoute

When is a baladeur not only a flâneur, but a Walkman? When it’s Le baladeur, a radio show with Julien Cernobori. Sadly, the show seems to be no more, but for now it’s still accessible on France Inter.

If you’ve ever longed to start a conversation with a stranger and not known how to begin, Julien is a dream come true. He begins his interviews by sharing music with a willing listener, the more improbable the match the better. Shy and more comfortable interviewing others than being interviewed himself, Cernobori did submit to one interview that captures the tone of the enterprise — un journalisme de l’ordinaire, sans grands discours.

head in the dirt

Fascinated by a perceived aristocrate on a bench reading from a pile of newspapers, he asks Cécile to listen to “Head in the Dirt” — and respond. How can so much be packed into 5-½ minutes? La richesse c’est le lien social, n’est-il pas? Her inversion sounds so much more elegant than n’est-ce pas, my personal go-to. And that pile of newspapers she’s reading has been given to her en pâture, a new one for me. Pâture is a pasture or fodder for animals, but used as it is here the expression connotes something given for immediate pleasure.

Switch the registre de langue for an exchange with la coiffeuse du 10e, who describes herself as being la meilleure coiffeuse du monde. Chantal questions certain lyrics of La fille aux cheveux de soie (pourquoi il dit que son corps est resserré?) and shares her lively view of divorce. Super, génial, extra, la liberté!

You’ll find your own favorites, but don’t overlook Marie, la femme aux couleurs. Try to guess what’s in her shopping bag. No wonder she lifts my spirits.


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