mardi 16 janvier 2007
Last week in the metro I was confronted by a poster which I could not for the life of me understand.
It said the above (in French, Tout neveux debonnaire avoue et vote vanille). I knew what is saying, that is, each individual word. I just could not for the life of me get what it was trying to convey. Is it a joke? Is there some part of French culture that I JUST DO NOT GET?
When Alain and I took the Metro to go to a museum this weekend, I asked him about it. He looked at it for a moment and said
"Tous nos vouex de bonheur à vous et votre famille" (which is what it sounds like, phonetically).
This means "All our wishes of happiness to you and your family", which is a common New Year's greeting/wish.
Ah. I get it now.
A play on sounds.

Here are some French phrases that when spoken out loud (and quickly) sound like English phrases/questions. See if anyone can get them. (It helps if you know/speak French)

Ail ou radis? - Are you ready? (found by themikestand)
Qu'on gratte tous les jeunes! - Congratulations! (found by Starman)
Oui Arlette - We are late! (found by themikestand)
Ahmed a l'goût de tripes
Youssef vole ma femme au lit - You ---- my family (partially found by themikestand)
Sale teint de pépère - salt and pepper (found by themikestand)
Six tonnes de chair - Sit on the chair (found by themikestand)
Dix nourrices raidies - Dinner is ready! (found by themikestand)
Les slips tout gais serrent
Guy vomit sous mon nez - Give me some money! (found by themikestand)
Deux bouts de chair
Varices de grosseur - Where is the grocer? (found by themikestand)
C'est que ça pèle
Ma queue perd son alcool

2 commentaires:

Anonyme a dit…

This entry illustrates what I've been trying to explain to my friend for a number of years. You simply cannot translate word for word. You must know the idea behind the words. Thanks for posting this which I will copy to him.
The only phrase that rings a bell with me was the second one which, I assume, sounds like "congratulations"?

themikestand a dit…

1)Are you ready?
3) We are late!
5)You ___ my family.
6) salt and pepper (awesome!)
7) sit on the chair (awesomer)
8) Dinner is ready! (took me a while)
10)give me some money! (ew)
12)Where is the grocer?

I'll be back, no doubt, as these will haunt me!

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