“I couldn’t even get my mom a decent Mother’s Day gift,” Soraya said, pouting. “Finally, I used my measly allowance and bought her a ticket to Paris. It’s nothing special, but I figure it’s the thought that counts.”
Soraya isn’t a real Haitian, at least not exactly. She’s a character played by a 26-year-old actress named Belinda Paul in a sketch-comedy television show called “Regards Croisés.”
Soraya is a caricature of a certain kind of privileged, bubbleheaded daughter of the Haitian elite — a Zuzu. Zuzu girls are conspicuous in places like Miami and Paris, but they are hard to see in the hills of Port-au-Prince, where they shop, go to the gym and party behind high walls topped with bougainvillea and concertina wire. Zuzu-speak, an affected whine of Creole, French and “omigod” English, is deliciously recognizable to the less fortunate masses, and every Saturday night Haitian viewers roar, clap and rock with laughter at Soraya’s airs. Continuez.