Archive for the ‘Entries #951-1000’ Category

A word that came up on OffQc back in 2011 and that we’ve never looked at again is boqué. The usage we looked at came from a dialogue in the television show 19-2, where boqué was used as both a noun and adjective:

— Ça doit pas être facile… travailler avec un boqué de même.
— Non… j’peux être aussi boqué que lui.

— Must not be easy… working with a stubborn guy like that.
— No… (but) I can be just as stubborn as him.

From 19-2, season 1, episode 6,
Radio-Canada, 9 March 2011.

You’ll also see boqué spelled in informal writing as bucké or bocké, given that it’s believed by certain speakers to derive from the English buck. The Usito dictionary, however, recognises the Québécois verb boquer [meaning to stand up to, refuse to obey], says it derives from bouquer, and says it’s also heard in other parts of the francophonie, like Switzerland, so it may in fact be a false anglicism.

I went on a little hunt for examples of this word online to illustrate its use:

Bref le monsieur, ben boqué à rester dans les années 1900, est reparti en disant qu’il allait revenir demain.
In short, the man, determined to remain stuck in the 1900s, left and said he’d come back tomorrow.
(Dans les années can be pronounced informally as dins années*; qu’il allait is pronounced informally as qu’y’allait.)

Il n’y a pas moyen de le faire changer d’idée, il est bucké.
It’s impossible to get him to change his mind, he’s stubborn.
(Il n’y a pas moyen is pronounced informally as y’a pas moyen; il est is pronounced informally as yé.)

Il était boqué sur son idée de sushis, fait qu’on a mangé ça.
He wouldn’t budge on his idea to eat sushi, so that’s what we had.
(Il était is pronounced informally as y’étaitfait que here is the informal faque we looked at recently.)

J’écoute toutes sortes de musique variées… Ça va du Linkin Park à Frank Sinatra à du EDM, du Hardcore, etc. Je suis pas trop bucké là-dessus!
I listen to all kinds of varied music… It ranges from Linkin Park to Frank Sinatra to EDM, Hardcore, etc. I’m not too stubborn about it!
(Je suis is pronounced informally as j’su’/chu or j’suis/chui.)

*If you want to hear an example of dans les années pronounced informally as dins années (sounds like dain z’année), look on YouTube for the song Camping Ste-Germaine by Les Cowboys Fringants.

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Here’s a usage that came up in a conversation that you’ll want to learn:


parce que… pis que…
because… and because…

For example:

Je l’ai acheté parce que c’est bon pis que c’est bio.
I bought it because it’s good and because it’s organic.

The que of parce que is repeated after pis in the example above:
parce que c’est bon pis que c’est bio

The informal pis sounds like pi. It means and here, and it occurs very frequently in spoken language. In the example above, it’s possible to say et instead of pis, of course.

Je l’ai acheté parce que c’est bon et que c’est bio.
I bought it because it’s good and because it’s organic.

On this page of the BDL, there’s a description of this repetition of que, which occurs to avoid changing the sense of a sentence. It can occur elsewhere, like with quandQuand tu seras grand et que tu travailleras, tu pourras t’acheter une auto. When you’re grown up and (when) you work, you can buy a car.

In parce que c’est bon pis que c’est bio, if you leave out the second que, then c’est bio is no longer attached to parce que.

While we’re on the topic of parce que, there’s another turn of phrase I’d like to point out because I’m sure you’ll want to learn it:


C’est pas parce que… que…
Just because… doesn’t mean that…

C’est pas parce que t’as une opinion que t’as raison.
Just because you’ve got an opinion doesn’t mean you’re right.

C’est pas parce que tout le monde fait ça que c’est correct.
Just because everyone does that doesn’t mean it’s okay.

C’est pas parce que ça sent pas mauvais que c’est encore bon.
Just because it doesn’t smell bad doesn’t mean it’s still good.

C’est pas is an informal equivalent of ce n’est pas, so c’est pas parce que is an informal equivalent of ce n’est pas parce que. Colloquial usage prefers c’est pas parce que.

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While listening to the radio yesterday, I heard the host of a radio show speak about the weather; she asked her listeners:

Est-ce qu’on a de la pluie par chez vous?

Par chez vous is a good usage to know. It means in your region, in your area, in your neck of the woods, etc., or simply where you are.

Est-ce qu’on a de la pluie par chez vous?
Is it raining where you are?
Is it raining in your region?


A man called into the show and sang a song on air. After he’d finished singing, the host of the show said:

Merci, c’est le fun, ça!

We’ve seen how c’est le fun is used in colloquial language in the sense of it’s fun or that’s fun. Here, though, I’d probably translate it as that’s great. Either way, the host said c’est le fun to show that she enjoyed his singing.


Very frequently used — the verb tenter. Ça me tente pas means I don’t want to, I don’t feel like it.

Ça me tente pas vraiment.
I don’t really feel like it.
I don’t really want to.

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During a conversation, I was reminded of the importance and frequency of the expression faque là. You’ll want to make sure you understand this expression if you don’t already.

Faque is a contraction of ça fait que. Faque means so, like alors, and it’s an informal usage.

Faque can be pronounced with one syllable (as faque) or two (as fa/que). The person who used the expression faque là that inspired this post always pronounced faque with one syllable.

Faque c’est ça.
So there you go.
So there you have it.
So that’s how it is, etc.

Faque qu’est-ce qu’on fait?
So what are we going to do?

As for là, it can be used in the sense of now.

Là, tu vas m’écouter.
Now you’re gonna listen to me.

Là, chu tanné!
Now I’m fed up!

Viens-t’en là, là.
Come right now.

When used with past time, though,  means then.

Là, y m’a dit : …
Then he said to me: …

Là, j’ai eu une idée.
Then I got an idea.

In conversations, you’ll often hear accompanied by faque and used with past time, the same way so then is used in English.

Faque là, y m’a dit : …
So then he said to me: …

Faque là, j’ai eu une idée.
So then I got an idea.

You’ll also hear pis là very frequently, where pis is a contraction of puis. We can translate pis là as and then, or more informally as an’ then.

Pis là, y m’a dit : …
And then he said to me: …

Pis là, j’ai eu une idée.
And then I got an idea.

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In the OffQc guide 1000, there’s an example sentence (#549) that reads:

J’attends d’la visite.
I’m expecting company.

De la visite here means company, as in people who come for a visit. In addition to attendre de la visite, the Usito dictionary also provides recevoir de la visite and avoir de la visite.

J’ai d’la visite en fin d’semaine.
I’ve got people coming over this weekend.

En fin de semaine means this weekend, on the weekend.

In the examples above, there are two informal contractions that you should learn and can even begin using yourself to help make your French sound more natural.

The first one is d’la, a contraction of de la. Say j’ai de la. You hear three syllables, right? When you say j’ai d’la, though, you’ll only hear two. It’s a small difference, but a noticeable one. If you have trouble saying it, imagine it were spelled jaidla.

Now try saying both ways:

j’ai de la visite
j’ai d’la visite

The second contraction is fin d’semaine, from fin de semaine. In this case, the contracted d’ actually makes a t sound, like fin t’semaine.

Try to say this example again:

J’ai d’la visite en fin d’semaine.

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