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Des bretelles tatouées sur le corps? Il doit VRAIMENT aimer ça se péter les bretelles…

In entry #731, we looked at one of the different meanings of the verb péter, which is… to fart.

As usual, Rabii Rammal provides us with an illustrative example:

J’ai pété sur une fille.
I farted on a girl.

I assume you’d like to know a bit more than just how to talk about farting on people in French, so let’s look at some other uses of the verb péter.

In Québec, péter is pronounced pèter. The first vowel sounds like è rather than é. This is true for all the tenses of the verb péter.

In Québec, if someone farts “higher than the hole,” it’s because he’s acting like a pretentious ass! It’s a rude expression in French: péter plus haut que le trou. The French (in France) have a similar expression: péter plus haut que son cul, which literally means to fart higher than one’s ass.

When things burst, snap or explode, or if you break something, you can use the verb péter.

La bombe a pété. / La corde a pété.
The bomb exploded. / The rope snapped.

J’ai pété mes lunettes.
I smashed my glasses.

J’ai pété la vitre de l’auto.
I smashed the car window.

If it’s your temper that snapped, you could say…

J’ai pété une coche!
I went ballistic! I lost it!

Are you in really good health? Then…

Tu pètes de santé!
You’re bursting with health!

If you fart fire, it’s not because of something spicy you ate — it’s because you’re full of energy:

Je pète le feu!
I’m full of energy!
I’m in top shape!

In Québec, someone who brags will “snap his suspenders.”

se péter les bretelles
to brag, to boast
(literally: to snap one’s suspenders/braces)

Y’a pas de quoi se péter les bretelles!
There’s no reason to brag!
That’s nothing to brag about!

A graphic designer quoted on canoe.ca thinks Montrealers are full of themselves: À Montréal, on se pète toujours les bretelles en croyant qu’on est les meilleurs. (In Montréal, people always brag thinking they’re the best.)

There’s even a noun form: le pétage de bretelles.

A reader of the Journal de Montréal described the Olympics as an étalage superficiel et dégoûtant de pétage de bretelles (a superficial and disgusting display of boasting).

Or, if you prefer, you can speak of le pétage de broue, which means the same thing. In Québec, la broue is the foamy head that forms on beer. If you’re farting that stuff (tu pètes de la broue), then you’re bragging in Québec!

Arrête donc de péter de la broue!
(sounds like: arrête don de pèter d’la broue)
Will you stop bragging!

That’s a lot of vocab, so here it all is again in list form. The québécois expressions are followed by Québec.

1. péter sur une fille (to fart on a girl)
2. péter plus haut que le trou (to be a pretentious ass) Québec
3. une bombe qui pète (a bomb that explodes)
4. une corde qui pète (a rope that snaps)
5. péter ses lunettes (to smash one’s glasses)
6. péter une vitre (to smash a window)
7. péter une coche (to go ballistic) Québec
8. péter de santé (to be in perfect health)
9. péter le feu (to be full of energy)
10. se péter les bretelles (to brag) Québec
11. péter de la broue (to brag) Québec
12. le pétage de bretelles (bragging) Québec
13. le pétage de broue (bragging) Québec

Image credit: Evilox

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A funny but entirely serious article from 2013 in Montréal’s La Presse newspaper describes a medical study in which it was determined that high altitudes cause more intestinal gas. This means that people feel the need to fart more on airplanes than on the ground.

The researchers say that holding farts in causes bloating, indigestion, pain and even stress due to the mental concentration required. They recommend that airplane seats be stuffed with active charcoal to absorb the stench so that passengers can fart freely when travelling by plane.

How do the Québécois say fart in French?

In French, a fart is called un pet. In Québec, the final t is pronounced. This means that pet sounds exactly as it’s written, or like pètt. In France, the final t of pet is silent (and you know what they say about the silent ones).

A commonly used expression in French is lâcher un pet, which means “to fart” or “to blow a fart.” There is also the verb péter, which means the same thing. In Québec, péter is pronounced pèter (è instead of é).

The researchers say that the question of whether or not to fart isn’t simple for pilots. If a pilot restrains from farting (si le pilote se retient de lâcher un pet) he’ll suffer undesirable effects on his health. On the other hand, if he lets them out (s’il se laisse aller), the co-pilot’s attention may be compromised.

In their study, the researchers also answered the following question: Est-ce que les pets féminins ont une odeur plus prononcée que les pets masculins? Do female farts have a stronger odour than male farts? The researchers say yes; female farts smell worse than male ones.

Here’s some essential vocab related to farts.

péter / lâcher un pet
to fart, to blow a fart

faire un pet sauce
to blow a wet fart

une face de pet
a fart face

péter plus haut que le trou
to be a pretentious, stuck-up ass
(literally: to fart higher than the hole!)

lâcher un pet dans un ascenseur
to blow a fart in an elevator

Ouache! C’est dégueulasse!
Oh gross! That’s disgusting!
(ouache sounds like wache; rhymes with “cash”)

Ça sent pas la rose, hein!
It sure doesn’t smell like roses!

Une fille, ça pète pas!
Girls don’t fart.

But when she does, run for cover…

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