Archive for January, 2012

Ya rien, j’te dis (#407)

A wife sees her husband panicking in a scene from 30 vies. She pushes him to tell her what the matter is:

Dis-moi c’que t’as.

He tells her that everything’s fine. But because the wife keeps insisting on knowing what’s wrong, he gets frustrated. He tells her:

Ya rien, j’te dis.

Dis-moi c’que t’as. (dzi moi skeu tâ)
= Dis-moi ce que tu as.
Tell me what’s the matter.

Ya rien, j’te dis. (ya rien chteu dzi)
= Il n’y a rien, je te dis.
Nothing’s the matter, I tell you.

If you don’t know why dis in these examples sounds like dzi, read entries #209 and #210.

[Quotes from 30 vies, season 2, episode 59, Radio-Canada, Montreal, 21 December 2011.]

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In the Vox Pop section of the Montreal-based magazine Urbania (#32), people were asked what they thought was the biggest myth related to lesbians.

A secondary school student felt that the biggest myth was how people think that lesbians are lesbian parce qu’elles ne pognent pas avec les gars.

pogner avec les gars
to turn guys’ heads, to be lucky with guys

(Remember, gars is pronounced gâ.)

In other words, the myth that the student mentioned was how some people believe that lesbians are lesbian because they can’t attract a guy.


pogner avec les filles
to turn girls’ heads, to be lucky with girls

According to this, guys who dance well have more success in the pogner avec les filles department. If a guy moves well to the music, it suggests to females that he’s in good health and can reproduce.

In that case,



[This entry was inspired by “Vox Pop” (written by Joanie Guérin) in Urbania, numéro 32, hiver 2012, Montréal, page 6.]

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T’as pas d’affaires à dire ça!
You’ve got no business saying that!
You’ve got no right to say that!

Including this expression here was inspired by different episodes of 30 vies, where t’as pas d’affaires à (…) was used a few times. It’s an informal expression.

Another example:

T’as pas d’affaires à me parler comme ça!

During regular, informal conversations in French, you’ll often come across tu n’as pas said as t’as pas.

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The winter 2012 issue of the thematic (and always fascinating) magazine Urbania is now available en kiosque. This issue, #32, is devoted to the theme of lesbiennes.

You may remember this magazine from entry #385, where the autumn issue was devoted to the theme of babies.

Over the next while, we can look at some of the vocabulary in this issue related to lesbians and homosexuality.

For this entry, let’s look at some of the language that was used in French to talk about “coming out,” or revealing one’s homosexuality.

Even though the expressions below come from an issue devoted to the theme of lesbians, they can all be used when talking about gay males too.

To say “to come out,” the expression used most often in this issue is:

  • faire son coming out

Elle a fait son coming out en 2001.
J’ai fait mon coming out à ma famille.

Another expression used in numerous articles is:

  • sortir du placard

This is the equivalent of “to come out of the closet.”

La sœur de Marge Simpson est sortie du placard en 2005.*
Il est sorti du placard.

Other expressions that appear in the issue include:

  • avouer son homosexualité
  • annoncer son homosexualité
  • révéler son homosexualité
  • afficher son homosexualité
  • sortir de la garde-robe (also sortir du garde-robe in Quebec)
  • faire sa sortie du placard

If you’re looking for interesting reading material in French with contemporary and urban vocabulary, give Urbania a try.

But be warned: Because each issue is thematic, with interesting articles and images printed on paper that feels good to touch, you may be tempted to start collecting them!


*Marjolaine Arcand, « 25 lesbiennes qu’on aime ». Urbania, hiver 2012, numéro 32, Montréal, page 33.

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In Tu peux frencher un gars à Memphis, author Matthieu Simard talks about the importance of the place we call home and where we choose to end our lives.

No matter where you were born, no matter where you’ve lived in the world, what counts, he says, c’est où t’arrêtes. For him, that’s Montreal. He has some interesting things to say about Montreal, like:

Assez propre pour qu’on en soit fiers, mais assez sale pour qu’on ne se sente pas mal de jeter sa gomme par terre.

You’ll notice that the title of his text uses the verb frencher, “to french kiss.” Frencher un gars is “to french kiss a guy.” Remember, gars is pronounced gâ. The letters rs in gars aren’t pronounced.

There’s a noun too: un french, “a french kiss.”

Both frencher and un french are informal uses.

In entry #245, you can read about un french avec trop de langue et trop de bave.

[Quote by Matthieu Simard in Tu peux frencher un gars à Memphis, published on Urbania on 1 September 2009.]

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