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Posts Tagged ‘feeler’

A man talked about his son who wasn’t feeling well because of a fever. He said an equivalent of this in French: “He wasn’t feeling good. He had a fever.”

To say this, he used a verb heard in colloquial langauge: filer.

Here’s what he said:

I’ filait pas. I’ faisait d’la fièvre.
He wasn’t feeling good. He had a fever.

In informal writing, you’ll see this verb spelled as filer or feeler. We’ll go with the gallicised spelling filer here.

In the sense of to not feel well (or, colloquially, to not feel good), filer is used in the negative: i’ filait pas, i’ file pas, j’filais pas, j’file pas, tu filais pas, tu files pas, etc.

Remember, il is virtually always pronounced i’ in colloquial language. This might be shown in writing as i’ or y (i’ filait pas or y filait pas).

Remember too that, in colloquial language, ne is avoided. That’s why it’s said as i’ filait pas and not il ne filait pas.

We’ve seen filer before. In #155 (which was almost a thousand entries ago, so I’ll forgive you if you forgot), a character from the television show 19-2 says:

Tu files pas, tu m’appelles, ok?
[If] you don’t feel good, you call me, ok?

___

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«Tu files pas, tu m'appelles, OK?» [heard in 19-2]

«Tu files pas, tu m’appelles, OK?» [heard on the TV show 19-2]

In today’s entry, let’s focus our attention on the informal verb feeler heard in Québécois French.

We’ve seen the verb feeler come up in a few entries lately, so I’ve pulled together all examples of it on OffQc to see them here in one spot.

The verb feeler (sounds like filé) means “to feel” — we’ll see in what ways below — and is an informal usage only, borrowed from English.

Because this verb is largely an oral usage and not permitted in the standard form of French used in Québec, you’ll see different spellings applied to it when it manages to show up in writing. For example, you might see the first-person present tense spelled as je feel (and j’feel), je file (and j’file) and sometimes as je feele (and j’feele).

The informally contracted j’ sounds like ch before the letter f. So j’feel sounds like chfile.

In fact, the verb feeler isn’t a strictly québécois usage because, in entry #805, la Néo-Brunswickoise Lisa LeBlanc uses it in her song J’pas un cowboy when she sings these lyrics:

1. J’feel toute seule en calvaire.
I feel lonely as hell.

In the description of that same entry, we also saw:

2. J’feel pas ben.
I don’t feel good.

In entry #525, we looked at these examples of feeler:

3. Y file pas ce soir.
He doesn’t feel good this evening.

4. J’file pas fort ce matin.
I don’t feel great this morning.

Those last two sentences could also be said as:

5. Y file pas à soir.
6. J’file pas fort à matin.

That’s because à matin and à soir exist alongside ce matin and ce soir in Québec. The more formal the language is, the more likely you are to encounter the forms using ce.

In entry #748, we saw faire feeler cheap:

7. Tu m’as fait feeler cheap.
You made me feel bad (about myself).

In entry #155, we saw this example of feeler taken from a television series from Québec called 19-2:

8. Tu files pas, tu m’appelles, OK?
(If) you don’t feel good, you call me, OK?

The French word si (if) wasn’t used here, but it’s understood. Also, in this scene from 19-2, the character was emotionally down rather than physically ill.

In entry #796, we saw a few more examples of feeler:

9. Je file tout croche.
I feel bad. I don’t feel good.

10. Je file cheap en maudit.
I feel so damn bad (e.g., for something said or done).

11. Je file pas ben pantoute.
I don’t feel good at all.

You’ll notice in 3, 5 and 8 there’s no word to describe the person’s state, like ben. It’s just the verb followed by pas (y file pas, tu files pas, j’feel pas, etc.). If someone “doesn’t feel,” it’s understood the person “doesn’t feel good.”

With your friends from Québec, there’s no problem using these examples. You wouldn’t want to use them in more formal writing and speaking situations though, or in front of particularly persnickety persons or frustratingly fussy French profs. (You’ll forgive me for my horrible alliterations because I’m writing this at 5 o’clock in the morning.)

If you needed to avoid these examples, you could say things like:

Je me sens mal.
Ça [ne] va pas.
Je [ne] me sens pas bien.
Je vais mal.
Je me sens malade.
Je suis malade…

Here are four more example sentences for good measure!

12. J’feel pas assez pour fêter avec vous autres.
I don’t feel good enough to celebrate with you guys.

13. J’file pas ben ben aujourd’hui.
I’m not feeling so hot today.

14. Désolé, mais j’feel pas ton texte.
I’m not “feeling” what you wrote (e.g, article, essay).
What you wrote isn’t doing it for me.

15. Je commence à pas ben feeler.
I’m starting to not feel good.

Image credit: Leonid Mamchenkov

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(official site)

César asks if I can write a little about Acadian French and Chiac on OffQc.

I haven’t spent enough time around speakers of Acadian French to be able to do here what I do with Québécois French. But what if we took a look from time to time at some of Lisa LeBlanc’s music? In this way, maybe you can infer certain things about Lisa LeBlanc’s variety of French without me having to explicitly say things like “this is Acadian.”

First, let’s return to Lisa LeBlanc’s song Câlisse-moi là. (You can read what câlisse-moi là means here.) We’ll look at another song of hers farther down.

In this song, you’ll very clearly hear the “aww” sound made by the accented â when Lisa pronounces the word câlisse. This sound is also used in Québec. It’s the sound you’ll hear in words like pâtes, fâché and ramasser.

There are three things in this song that strike me as less Québécois and more the variety of French spoken by Lisa LeBlanc, who, remember, is not from Québec but New Brunswick:

1. so
2. j’te bette
3. rolled r

1. so

We looked at Lisa’s use of the word so in her chorus here. Remember, the Québécois say faque instead of so, or at least this is the case in cities like Montréal and Québec. You can also hear so among franco-Ontarian speakers who live farther away from the borders of Québec.

2. j’te bette

In one line, Lisa sings: j’te bette que t’es pas game, or “I bet (you) that you’re not game.” Here, game means “willing,” and this informal usage is also used in Québec. On the other hand, I’d say that the verb most frequently used in Québec in the sense of “to bet” is gager. In Québec, you could say: j’te gage que t’es pas game.

3. rrrrr

Listen to how Lisa pronounces words like rut, vrai and peureux. Can you hear her rolled r? In Montréal, that rolled r used to be in common use up until about the middle of the 1900s. The rolled r today, in Montréal, is associated with older speakers. From what I understand, the rolled r is standard in Acadian French.

Here’s another song by Lisa LeBlanc that you might like: J’pas un cowboy.

Let’s look at these four parts of her song:

1. j’pas
2. pogner
3. tavarne
4. but j’feel

1. j’pas

If you’ve been reading OffQc for a while, you know very well that je suis often contracts to chu. Je ne suis pas un cowboy can be said informally as chu pas un cowboy.

Lisa takes the contraction one step further and pronounces je suis just as a ch sound, which is shown in the title of her song as j’. The j’pas in her title (which means je [ne] suis pas) sounds like chpâ. This can also be heard in Québec.

2. pogner

In one line, Lisa sings about a cowboy hat. She says: pis un chapeau que j’ai pogné à St-Tite, or “and a hat that I picked up in St-Tite.”

St-Tite is in Québec. Every year, there’s a western festival held there.

If you’ve been following along with OffQc for a while, you must be experts in the verb pogner by now, especially in the book title Ah shit, j’ai pogné le cancer written by Maude Schiltz.

The verb pogner, used very frequently in Québec, usually takes on the sense of “to catch.” Here, in this song, we can say it means “to pick up.”

3. tavarne

Listen to how Lisa pronounces taverne. It sounds like tavarne, right? Pronouncing ar instead of er is often associated with older speakers in Québec. For example, to the ears of someone from Montréal, la porte varte est ouvarte (meaning la porte verte est ouverte) sounds rural or spoken by an older person.

The exception, in Québec, is with vulgar words, which conserve the ar sound in all age groups, like marde, tabarnak and viarge.

When Lisa says tavarne (taverne), it rhymes with farme (ferme) in the line before it. It’s unclear to me if this pronunciation is standard in her variety of French, or if she’s chosen this pronunciation as a stylistic element to sound more folksy. I can’t comment on the social perception of the ar sound (as opposed to er) in Acadian French. If you know something about this, feel free to comment.

4. but j’feel

Lisa says: but j’feel toute seule en calvaire, or “but I feel as lonely as hell.” In Québec, “but” is definitely said as mais. This line would sound perfectly québécois said instead as: mais j’feel toute seule en calvaire.

The verb feeler (also spelled as filer) comes to French via English, and is only used informally. J’feel cheap. I feel bad. I feel like a low-life. J’feel pas ben. I don’t feel good.

We saw in entry #803 (Ma vie, c’est de la marde) the expression en esti, where the comic strip character says: il fait beau en esti, or “it’s fucking nice out.” The expression en calvaire works the same way: j’feel toute seule en calvaire.

There are other elements for us to look at in this song, but let’s leave some stuff for future entries! 😉

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Je tripe fort sur les orignaux de jardin!

Je tripe fort sur les orignaux de jardin!

Review time!

Here are 51 example sentences to file away in the folder marked Québécois French in your head. Note: Some of these sentences are for a mature audience only and blah blah blah, this is OffQc.

Credit where credit is due — a very large number of these example sentences are heavily inspired by Maude Schiltz and the colloquial language found in her book Ah shit, j’ai pogné le cancer (tome 1).

I’ve included notes where I thought it would be helpful.

All of these example sentences feel like the sort of things you could say in everyday language situations with people you know well. These are not examples of formal language.

There’s an exception though, and that’s number 33. This example sentence isn’t strictly informal.

Are you getting excited? I am! We’re only a few posts away from #800, which means post #1000 will soon be poking its head on the horizon!

1. Je tripe fort sur les orignaux de jardin!
I’m totally crazy about garden moose!

Or should that be “garden meese”?
The singular of orignaux is orignal.

2. Y a été assez poche avec moi.
He was pretty bad to me.

Y a is an informal way of saying il a.
Y a sounds like yâ.

3. Là, ça va faire!
OK, that’s enough!
Right, enough is enough!

means “now,” but “now” doesn’t sound right in the translation here.

4. J’ai pris mes cliques pis mes claques.
I grabbed all my stuff.

Pis is pronounced pi.
Pis means “and” here.
You can use this expression when getting all your stuff together to move out quickly or when you’re being kicked out, for example.

5. J’ai sacré mon camp.
I got the hell outta there.

Camp is pronounced like quand.

6. Je commence à badtriper là-dessus.
I’m starting to freak out about it.

Badtriper is pronounced bade-tripé.
Use badtriper to talk about freaking out in a bad way (stress, worry, etc.).

7. C’t’une joke, capote pas!
I’m just kidding, calm down!

C’t’une is an informal pronunciation of c’est une.
C’t’une sounds like stune.
Use capoter to talk about losing one’s calm.

8. Je tripe là-dessus solide.
I’m totally crazy about it.

9. Chu down depuis hier.
I feel down since yesterday.

Chu is an informal pronunciation of je suis.
Down
is pronounced like its English equivalent.

10. Y mérite que je le câlisse là.
He deserves for me to fuckin’ dump him.

Y is an informal pronunciation of il.

11. Chu sorti avec ma gang de bureau.
I went out with my group from the office.

Chu is an informal pronunciation of je suis.
Gang
sounds like its English equivalent.

12. C’est ben correct si t’aimes pas ça.
It’s perfectly fine if you don’t like it.

Correct is pronounced informally as correc.

13. On s’est quitté sur une note poche.
We left each other on a bad note.

14. J’ai pogné mon chum à cruiser des filles.
I caught my boyfriend going after girls.

Cruiser is pronounced crouzé.

15. Ça, c’est le boutte le fun!
That’s the fun part!

Boutte is an informal pronunciation of bout.

16. Je file tout croche.
I feel bad. I don’t feel well.

17. J’ai pété une sale coche.
I lost my temper big time.

Péter is pronounced pèté.

18. J’ai tripé en crisse.
I had a hell of a great time.

19. Je trouve que c’est de la bullshit.
I think that’s bullshit.

Bullshit is pronounced boulechitte.

20. Y pogne avec les filles.
He’s lucky with girls. Girls find him hot.

Y is an informal pronunciation of il.

21. Le timing a pas été bon.
The timing wasn’t good.

22. J’ai de la misère à le croire.
I’m having a hard time believing him.

23. J’ai fait freaker tout le monde.
I freaked everybody out.

Freaker is pronounced friquer.

24. J’ai pogné un down.
I’m feeling really down.

Down is pronounced like its English equivalent.

25. T’es vraiment magané ce matin.
You’re in really rough shape this morning.

T’es is an informal contraction of tu es.
T’es
sounds like té.

26. J’ai la chienne de me faire mal.
I’m terrified of getting hurt.

27. Y est carrément épeurant, ce gars-là.
He’s downright scary, that guy.

Y est is an informal pronunciation of il est.
Y est sounds like yé.
Carrément is pronounced cârrément.
Gars is pronounced gâ.

28. T’es cheap en maudit, toi!
You’re so damn cheap!

T’es is an informal contraction of tu es.
T’es
sounds like té.
Cheap here is used in the sense of not liking to spend money.

29. Tu te fais bullshitter solide.
You’re getting played solid, lied to big time.
He (she, they, etc.) is totally bullshitting you.

Bullshitter is pronounced boulechitté.

30. Je file cheap en maudit.
I feel so damn bad.

Cheap sounds like its English equivalent.
Cheap here is used in the sense of feeling like a low-life.

31. C’est pour le fun!
It’s just for fun!

32. Chu raqué et j’ai mal à la gorge.
I’m sore all over and I have a sore throat.

Chu is an informal pronunciation je suis.

33. Le brigadier scolaire a fait traverser des écoliers.
The crossing guard helped some schoolchildren to cross.

34. Le français québécois, c’est tripant!
Québécois French is such a blast!

35. On m’a booké un rendez-vous.
They booked me an appointment.

Booker is pronounced bouké.

36. Y a pogné le creux de la vague.
He’s down in the dumps.

Y a is an informal pronunciation of il a.
Y a sounds like yâ.

37. Arrête de m’écoeurer avec ça.
Stop nagging me about that.
Stop driving me nuts about that.

38. La semaine s’annonce rough.
Looks like a rough week ahead.

Rough is pronounced roffe.

39. T’es full pas de classe, toi.
You’re so unclassy.

T’es is an informal contraction of tu es.
T’es
sounds like té.
Full sounds like foule.

40. Je file pas ben pantoute.
I don’t feel good at all.

41. Shit, tu viens de passer sur la rouge!
Shit, you just went through a red (light)!

Sur la is often pronounced informally as s’a.

42. Peux-tu checker ça avec ton patron?
Can you check that with your boss?

Checker sounds like the English word “check” followed by é.

43. Es-tu game de faire ça demain?
Are you up for doing it tomorrow?

Game sounds like its English equivalent.

44. T’es aussi ben de l’appeler aujourd’hui.
You better call him today.

T’es is an informal contraction of tu es.
T’es
sounds like té.

45. Crisse-moi patience!
Leave me the hell alone!

46. Ces produits sont pleins de chnoute.
These products are full of crap.

47. Le médecin m’a gelé ben comme faut.
The doctor drugged me up good.

Ben comme faut is an informal way of saying bien comme il faut.

48. Chu vraiment tanné d’entendre ça.
I’m really sick of hearing that.

Chu is an informal pronunciation je suis.

49. Des livres, j’en ai un char pis une barge.
I’ve got heaps and heaps of books.

Pis is pronounced pi.
Pis means “and” here.

50. C’est un crisse de gros cave.
He’s a huge goddamn idiot.

Don’t mistakenly pronounce cave like an English word.
Cave is a French word and rhymes with bave.

51. On l’a pogné à se crosser sur la job.
They caught him jerking off on the job.

Sur la is often pronounced informally as s’a.

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French-language purists will tell you not to use the words below, but you gotta know ’em if you want to understand the Québécois!

We won’t concern ourselves with the ideas of the purists here. We’ll let them squabble amongst themselves as we get down to the more important work of learning French.

Even though these words are often referred to as anglicismes or as examples of franglais, I don’t see a reason why we can’t just think of them as French words that entered the language by way of English.

That said, it’s important to know that these words are reserved to informal speaking situations. They’re not used in formal speech or writing.

The examples below are not the only way those ideas can be expressed in French. For example, although you’ll hear a tattoo called un tatou in Québec, you’ll also come across the standardised tatouage. In the list below, we’ll just look at ways you might hear things said using a word taken from English.

If you like this list of 31 gotta-knows, there’s also a list of 50 must-knows and a list of 30 full-québécois on OffQc.

If you learn everything in those 3 posts, that’s 111 MB of example sentences uploaded to your brain. And if you learn everything on OffQc, then your brain will definitely need a memory upgrade pretty soon. 🙂

1. Tu m’as fait feeler cheap.
You made me feel bad (about myself).

2. Je badtripe là-dessus.
I’m worried sick about it.

3. J’ai eu un gros down.
I got really down.

4. C’est tough sur le moral.
It’s tough on your morale.

5. C’est weird en masse.
That’s totally weird.

6. Ce médicament me rend stone.
This medication stones me out.

7. C’est tellement cute son accent.
His accent is so cute.

8. Ça m’a donné un gros rush.
It got me all pumped up.

9. Mon boss est venu me voir.
My boss came to see me.

10. À l’heure du lunch, je fais de l’exercice.
I exercise at lunchtime.

11. Ça clique pas entre nous.
We don’t click with each other.

12. C’est pas cher, mais c’est de la scrap.
It’s not expensive, but it’s junk.

13. C’est roffe à regarder.
It’s tough [rough] to watch.

14. Je sais pas dealer avec ça.
I don’t know how to deal with this.

15. J’ai mis une patch sur la partie usée.
I put a patch on the worn-out part.

16. Es-tu game pour un concours?
Are you up for a contest?

17. J’ai rushé sur mes devoirs.
I rushed my homework.

18. Y’a un gros spot blanc sur l’écran.
There’s a big white spot on the screen.

19. Je veux vivre ma vie à full pin.
I want to live my life to the max.

20. Le voisin m’a blasté.
The neighbour chewed me out.

21. J’ai un kick sur mon prof de français.
I’ve got a crush on my French prof.

22. T’as l’air full sérieux sur cette photo.
You look full serious in this photo.

23. Écoute ça, tu vas triper!
Listen to this, you’re gonna totally love it!

24. Viens me voir, j’ai fuck all à faire.
Come see me, I’ve got fuck all to do.

25. J’aime les idées flyées.
I like ideas that are really out there.

26. J’ai pas de cravate pour matcher avec ma chemise.
I don’t have a tie to go with my shirt.

27. Je t’ai forwardé sa réponse.
I forwarded her answer to you.

28. Elle a un gros tatou sur l’épaule.
She’s got a huge tattoo on her shoulder.

29. Ça me fait freaker.
It freaks me out.

30. Merci, on a eu un fun noir!
Thanks, we had an amazing time!

31. J’ai lâché ma job parce que j’étais en burn out.
I quit my job because I was burnt out.

_ _ _

Although I’ve written the examples in this post myself, they were inspired by Maude Schiltz‘s book Ah shit, j’ai pogné le cancer and by Rabii Rammal‘s blog posts on Urbania, both of which I encourage you to check out.

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Overheard on the radio yesterday — a woman speaking about a friend qui file pas ce soir.

That was her informal way of saying that he wasn’t feeling well. Y file pas.

Many sources affirm that this expression is a borrowing from the English verb “to feel.” In French, you might even see it spelled feel (je feel pas) in informal writing.

Je file pas. Je file pas ben.
= je me sens mal

Je file pas fort ce matin.
I don’t feel great this morning.

Just remember that this expression is informal. It would appear out of place in careful writing.

If you needed to avoid all informality, you could try je me sens mal or je ne me sens pas bien or ça ne va pas. These last two expressions can be made informal by dropping the ne (je me sens pas bien, ça va pas).

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In the TV series 19-2, Officer Nick Berrof has just returned to work after his partner was shot in the head during an investigation.

When Sergeant Houle sees Nick back at the station for the first time, he reassures him that he can come see him if he feels down. Houle knows things are going to be rough for Nick on the job after what happened to his partner. He says:

Tu files pas, tu m’appelles, OK?
(If) you don’t feel good, you call me, OK?

Similarly, if you hear someone say j’file pas, it means: “I don’t feel good.”

This verb is also spelled as feeler.

[This entry was inspired by the character Houle in 19-2, season 1, episode 1, Radio-Canada, Montreal, 2 February 2011.]

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