Wednesday, February 25

Lost in Translation

25th February
A French man called Gaston works for the family I spent last week with, he was explaining in English to the Man why the cooker didn't work. When he had gone, the Man turned to me and said

Normally I don't understand French, but I can understand Gaston perfectly

23 comments:

  1. oh geez - you really are ready for a visit to our household!

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  2. Communication is a wondrous thing...
    Sx

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  3. I'm impressed by his wondrous pace of learning. Who needs linguaphone when you have such finely tuned ears?

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  4. I know what The Man means! I had a French friend who spoke French very clearly to me. I could mostly understand. He was a retired air traffic controller and thus spoke perfect English to help me along when I got stuck.

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  5. HAHAHA! Ain't it the truth?

    I remember watching a Lady speaking to some visiting Inuit (Eskimo) and she was using the time honoured method of TALKING REALLY LOUD because apparently English is magically translated and becomes discernable to others.

    One phrase that caught my attention was YOU PEOPLE HAVE BEAUTIFUL SKIN! which I'm sure they were grateful to hear.

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  6. Deb - do you all speak in tongues?

    Scarlet - It truly is

    Wow - Norwegian actually

    Mme D - He is certainly a wonder that much is true

    Xl - Gaston did need to speak English all the time to help the Man understand though

    Donn - and I thought it was only the Brits who used the slow, shouty approach for speaking to foreigners

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  7. Those silly French and their different word for everything!

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  8. you'd never know it was english though with that lovely way the french have of pronouncing words. especially when thier speaking to amerians, not that your man was an american. or is he? i seem to have forgotten that bit of information. xoxox

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  9. Pru - I keep telling them how they'd be better off having the same words as us - they just shrug and say BOFF!!. How can you argue with that?

    Savannah - Those naughty French people use that sexy accent deliberately with the Brits and the Americans - they might be using it with other people too

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  10. English spoken by a French man is so charming. Do you know that when our neighbour came over to introduce himself (six years ago now) he actually kissed my hand and said 'Enchantez madame'. I sort of swooned actually - not because he was attractive but he was just so French.

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  11. I must lose my habit of using the words 'actually' and 'however'.

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  12. Frenchie - That's exactly what I mean - these wicked French people are going around seducing people with their accents willy nilly.

    I shouldn't worry too much about repeating those words, however there are some phrases that I'd like people to stop using... actually I could start a long list now I think about it

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  13. Hah! English spoken in a French accent deserves to be a language of its own. Antoine de Caunes is the professor emeritus.

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  14. Gorilla - The other side of this is French spoken with an English accent - also a language apart.

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  15. But the French do have the same words as us - possibly the only one they have which is uniquely theirs is "BOFF!!"

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  16. Two words.

    Arsène. Wenger. *falls over*

    The English are not the only ones to think speaking louder makes people understand. When I was in Poland the first Polish phrase I learned was "I'm sorry I don't speak much Polish". When the Poles repeated their question only louder, I learned a second phrase:
    "I'm not deaf, I'm English".

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  17. Gadjo - How about tant pis?

    Daph - When I first came to France as a teenager I had to go and buy wine from an elderly farmer - it was quite an arduous task but finally his wife turned up and helped sort out what I was after, she asked me where I was from and I said England her husband said
    Aaah she's English, I thought she was handicapped

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  18. hahahahaha!

    That's awesome. Apparently I speak French poorly enough to be mistaken for a Belgian. I thought that was kinda cool until my now-French brother told me: "The Belgians are the Newfies of Europe."

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  19. Katrocket - now there's a dilemma would you rather be taken for a Belgian/Newfie or let people think you're retarded?

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  21. Haaaa!! "she's English, I thought she was handicapped - I'd be proud to hear that!

    "tant pis", is that like "what the f***"?

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  22. Sririam - Hello and welcome

    Gadjo - Tant pis is like 'tough'
    'I didn't get the thing I wanted'
    'Tant Pis'
    but I think of it as another Boff sort of expression

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