Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘gay’

Mado Lamotte

Click on Mado’s lovely hair to sashay away to her articles on Fugues

Not only does Montréal’s most famous drag queen have eyelashes to die for, she also has a column.

Mado Lamotte’s articles appear online and in hard copy in the city’s gay and lesbian magazine Fugues.

Last year, Mado took a trip to Ontario, la province qu’on aime bien bitcher, she says, or “the province everyone loves to bitch.”

Before she visited Toronto, she had only other people’s notions of the city in her head:

Combien de fois j’ai entendu des Québécois partis faire fortune dans la Ville Reine me dire : «C’est donc ben plate icitte, je m’ennuie de Montréal!»

I’ve heard people from Québec who’ve moved to Toronto to make lots of money say to me so many times: “It’s just so boring here, I miss Montréal!”

After hearing endless comments like that, she says it’s not hard to believe that “you always get bored and die in Ontario,” on s’ennuie toujours pour mourir en Ontario.

Besides, isn’t that what it says on Ontario’s licence plate too?

Anyway…

Mado discovered on her trip that she actually loved Ontario. She even had these nice things to say about Toronto in particular:

J’aurais jamais cru écrire ça un jour mais vraiment mes chéris, on l’a pus icitte l’affaire à Montréal. Dire qu’on a déjà été la ville la plus cool, la plus flyée, la plus too much du Canada, pis v’là-tu pas qu’on découvre que le vrai party c’est à Toronto qu’il se passe maintenant. Crack, alcool, pot, prostituées, les Torontois eux autres y savent faire le party! Rob Ford vient de détrôner Justin Bieber comme bad boy canadien de l’année. On a l’air fin nous autres avec notre Denis Coderre.

I never thought I’d write this one day but really, my dears, Montréal hasn’t got it anymore. To think we were once the coolest, the wildest, the most over-the-top city in Canada, and whaddya know, it turns out the real party is in Toronto now. Crack, alcohol, pot, prostitutes, those Torontonians sure know how to party! The mayor of Toronto, Rob Ford, has just defeated Justin Bieber as Canadian Bad Boy of the Year. We in Montréal seem “nice” with our mayor, Denis Coderre.

Yes, the city’s “Toronto the Good” reputation is definitely taking a good beating lately.

In French, Toronto’s got a nickname — la Ville Reine, or the “Queen City.” Hmm, maybe that’s why Mado ended up liking Toronto so much. She thought they named the whole city after her.

In the phrase on l’a pus icitte, l’affaire, the word pus sounds like pu. It’s an informal pronunciation of plus, when plus means “no more.” Icitte means ici. The word affaire is often used in the sense of “thing” in French: here, that “thing” is what Mado says Montréal hasn’t got anymore. Similarly, you could tell someone they’re great with: tu l’as, l’affaire!

Flyé is pronounced like the English word “fly” with é added to the end of it. Something that’s flyé is wild or “out there.”

When Mado writes eux autres y savent faire le party, the eux autres part means “them” (the people of Toronto), and y is an informal pronunciation of ils: eux autres, ils savent faire le party. Even though eux autres and y both refer to the same thing, this kind of repetition is common in French.

The expression v’la-tu pas que… is used to show surprise about something (here, that it turns out the real party’s in Toronto). This expression was also preceded by pis, which means “and” here (it’s a reduction of puis).

C’est donc ben plate icitte is pronounced cé don bin plate icitte. The expression donc ben means “very,” and plate means “boring.” Sometimes plate is also spelled platte. The masculine and feminine forms of this adjective are the same.

Je m’ennuie de Montréal means “I miss Montréal.” The expression here is s’ennuyer de quelque chose (or s’ennuyer de quelqu’un). If someone said je m’ennuie de toi, this means “I miss you.”

When pot means “marijuana” in French, the final t is pronounced.

And bitcher in French, that’s “to bitch.” There’s also la bitch, which means the same thing as its English equivalent.

_ _ _

French quotes by Mado Lamotte in:

«In et out version 2.0», Fugues, 27 janvier 2014.

«Y’a pas juste des Ontariens en Ontario», Fugues, 23 septembre 2013.

Read Full Post »

Who you callin’ a pwèsson?

Angela asks about how she heard words containing oi pronounced in folk music, like the word soir.

Read this text:

Ce soir on va boire, moi et toi! On va manger des poires, et conter des histoires! Voir c’est croire!

Now read it again, like this:

Ce swèr on va bwère, moé pis toé! On va manger des pwères, pis conter des histwères! Wère c’est crère!

This is obviously an exaggerated example, but these pronunciations do exist.

What is this madness? Isn’t poire supposed to be pronounced like poire and boire like boire?

Well, yeah… but I think it was Confucius who said, “He who lives in a freezer for half the year will start saying weird shit.”

Anyway, the pronunciations in that second example (swèr, bwère, crère, etc.) sound more typical of certain older speakers. Younger speakers would say soir, boire, croire, etc.

I don’t suggest you start pronouncing words like in that second example. Just learn to recognise them. On the other hand, for those of you doing traditional music, you may want to consider incorporating those pronunciations for the folkloric effect they produce when you sing.

That second example came from a university essay posted online. The author also mentions how those pronunciations are perceived: Aujourd’hui au Québec (…) cette pronunciation est jugée vulgaire, ouvrière, campagnarde, de mauvais goût, etc. (Today in Québec, this pronunciation is felt to be crude, working class, rural, low class, etc.).

Obviously the people who use this pronunciation don’t give a hoot, but you should be aware of how they may be perceived by others. This is why I don’t suggest you adopt this pronunciation when speaking.

Angela also notices a curious expression that comes up in the folk songs she listens to: ô gué!

Ô gué! is an exclamation of happiness or gayness (or should it be guéness?). Not gayness as in Gay Pride gayness, but gayness as in Isn’t Life Just Dandy gayness.

Remember what “gay” meant before it became associated with homosexuality? It meant happy, joyful, blissful… That’s what gué conveys here. If you hear it in a song, it just means the singers are feeling pretty gay.

This isn’t a modern use though, and you’re not going to hear anybody say that while out and about in Montréal — unless of course someone suddenly decided to bust out a folk song while sucking back a calorie-laden caffeine meal disguised as a beverage at Starbucks. Ô gué!

Read Full Post »

It’s been a while since we’ve looked at some French language from the TV show Les Parent. Let’s look at a scene from season 5, where we come across the québécois usages épeurant, moumoune and ben correct.

The scene:

Louis Parent has received his cousin Kevin Parent as a guest at his place. (Kevin is played by real-life singer Kevin Parent.)

During Kevin’s stay, a character called Marie takes a liking to him. Marie is a friend of the Parent family. She wants to watch a scary movie with Kevin late at night hoping to put the moves on him.

When Marie is alone in the living room with Kevin, she begins to flirt, using the subject of the scary movie that she’s about to see as her excuse:

Est-ce que c’est très épeurant comme film? Parce que moi j’suis vraiment moumoune.
Is it a really scary movie? Because I’m a real scaredy-cat.

Kevin doesn’t seem to be into Marie. He responds:

Non, c’est un peu dur, mais c’est pas vraiment épeurant. Tu vas être ben correcte.
No, it’s a bit rough but it’s not really scary. You’re gonna be just fine.

épeurant, scary
moumoune*, scaredy-cat, wimp, sissy
ben correct, just fine

*A note about une moumoune:

In the quote above, Marie used moumoune as an adjective to refer to herself as someone who gets scared easily. This word can become offensive if a gay male is referred to as une moumoune.

[Language taken from Les Parent, “Kevin qui vient dîner,” season 5, episode 1, Radio-Canada, Montréal, 17 September 2012.]

Read Full Post »

Here’s some more informal French from Urbania — not from the magazine itself, but from their Facebook page!

In this Facebook update, an Urbania writer tells us:

On a envoyé un de nos journalistes dans un sauna gai. Oui, il a vu des bizounes. Mais s’est-il fait pogner la sienne? À lire!

La bizoune, that’s the thing that boys have between their legs. So the journalist that they sent to a gay sauna, he saw lots of them.

La Parlure here and Wikébec there each have an example of la bizoune for you.

To go straight to the article on the Urbania website written by Frédéric Guindon, you can read it here. Only part of it is online. The rest is in the magazine in itself. There’s some funny language in the article, like the way the author describes the bizounes that he saw as des cobras sur le point d’attaquer.

[Quote from Urbania Facebook status update, 6 February 2012.]

Read Full Post »

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.

Read Full Post »