Posts Tagged ‘le fun’

On Urbania, Lysandre Nadeau writes about the approach of moving season — moving into a new apartment with a new coloc, that is. She writes:

Le soleil est enfin arrivé au Québec. Pis quand il se pointe, pas ben ben longtemps après, les gens déménagent. Eh oui, dans quelques semaines, le monde vont commencer à faire leurs boîtes.

pis quand il se pointe, and when it shows up
pas ben ben longtemps après, not too long afterwards
le monde vont commencer à, people are going to start to
faire leurs boîtes, to pack their boxes

Ben is an informal contraction of bien meaning really here. It sounds like bain. The author has doubled it for effect: pas ben ben longtemps après, literally not really really a long time afterwards.

Why has she used the plural vont with the singular noun le monde? Le monde vont commencer à faire leurs boîtes. It’s a feature of informal language where le monde, meaning people, is analysed as a plural noun like les gens.

Pis means and here. It’s pronounced pi and comes from puis. It’s similar to the way and in English can contract to an’ or ‘n’.

She continues:

Il va y avoir des gros camions partout dans les rues pis plein de vieux divans à motifs laittes sur les trottoirs.

plein de, lots of
vieux divans, old sofas
à motifs laittes, with ugly designs

Laitte is an informal pronunciation of laid that you’ll hear used spontaneously in conversations.

The author uses a few more words from conversational language:

Un nouvel appartement signifie aussi peut-être : un nouveau coloc. J’en ai eu en masse dans ma vie, des l’funs pis des pas l’funs.

un nouveau coloc, a new roommate, flatmate
en masse, lots, heaps
j’en ai eu en masse, I’ve had lots of them
des l’funs pis des pas l’funs, fun/great ones and not-so-fun/great ones

Coloc is a short form of colocataire. Locataire is a renter, so a colocataire is a “co-renter,” someone you share your apartment with. Coloc is used informally.

What does the first en mean in j’en ai eu en masse? It means of them here. In English, you can say I had many, but you can’t in French. In French, you have to say I had many of them, where the of them is said as en. J’en ai eu en masse, of them have had heaps.

Fun is a bit funny in that it uses the article le in front of it, even when used adjectively. Des gars le fun, fun guys. Unlike the author, I’m not sure I’d have put an s on fun in des l’fun pis des pas l’fun.

Source: All quotes written by Lysandre Nadeau in “Le guide de la pire personne en colocation,” Urbania, 22 May 2015.

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We’ve seen many times on OffQc how ben can be used in the sense of “very” or “really.”

Ben is an informal reduction of bien. It sounds like bain. A better spelling would be bin, and you will in fact sometimes see that. Ben is more common though, and that’s what I’ll use here.

C’est ben loin.
It’s really far.

C’est ben bon.
It’s really good.

C’est ben correct.
It’s really fine.
It’s really no problem.

Remember, ben is used in regular, everyday speaking encounters or informal writing situations (Facebook updates, for example). It’s not used in formal writing. If you see ben used in literature, it’s most likely to only be used in the dialogue portions of the text.

Sometimes you’ll hear ben repeated for emphasis. Some examples pulled from Google results:

C’est ben ben l’fun.
It’s just so much fun.

C’est ben ben plate.
It’s just so boring.

C’est ben ben cute à voir.
It’s just so cute to see.
(Cute is pronounced kioute.)

You’ll also hear it used in pas ben ben:

C’est pas ben ben utile.
It’s really not all that useful.

J’ai pas ben ben le choix.
I really don’t have much of a choice.

C’est pas ben ben clair.
It’s really not all that clear.

Y se force pas ben ben (pour apprendre le français, etc.).
He really doesn’t make much of an effort (to learn French, etc.).

You see? C’est pas ben ben compliqué.

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Portraits de Montréal published an interesting story on Facebook about a man who grew up in a family of farmers.

The man tells us that he loved the farm while growing up, and that he wanted to become a farmer himself. But he also tells us that his father saw things very differently.

His father sold the farm because he was only in it for the money and couldn’t understand why his son would care. He used drugs and beat his son.

You can read the text here.

It contains vocabulary that I thought you’d like to learn — vocabulary related to being a farmer and problems with the man’s father.

1. Être fermier, c’est l’fun au bout.
Being a farmer is so much fun.

Bout here would’ve been pronounced as boutte when the speaker said it. The expression au boutte means “totally.”

2. Il est de même.
He’s like that.
That’s the way he is.

De même here means comme ça.

3. Lui, il était là-dedans pour l’argent.
He was in it for the money.

4. Moi, je m’en crissais de l’argent.
I didn’t give a damn about the money.

Je m’en crisse means “I don’t give a damn.”

5. Elle est donc ben propre la grange!
The barn is just so clean!

Donc is pronounced don here. The original text on Facebook contains a spelling error: donc was spelled incorrectly as dont.

6. Câlisse ton camp.
Get the hell out of there.

Camp sounds like quand. Don’t pronounce the p.

7. La vache était loose dans son enclos.
The cow was loose in its pen, enclosure.

The spelling lousse is also used.

8. Je mangeais une volée.
I used to take a beating.
I used to get beaten up.

The expression is manger une volée.

9. Mon père était fucké.
My father was fucked up.

10. Il sniffait.
He used to sniff, snort drugs.

11. de la coke
coke (cocaine)

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On risque d'avoir du pas pire fun!

On risque d’avoir du pas pire fun!

I really like the wording that Lisa LeBlanc used in her Facebook update:

On risque d’avoir du pas pire fun!
We just might have some not-bad fun!

If this sentence leaves you feeling a little WTF, don’t worry — we’re gonna pick it apart good.

Let’s start backwards from the end of this interesting sentence.

>>> avoir du fun

On risque d’avoir du pas pire fun!

The expression avoir du fun is “to have fun.”

Tu vas avoir du fun.
You’re going to have fun.

J’ai eu du fun.
I had fun.

>>> pas pire

On risque d’avoir du pas pire fun!

Pas pire is used in the same way as English’s “not bad” or like the other French expression pas mal.

Comment ça va?
Pas pire, pas pire!
— How’s it going?
— Not bad, not bad!

— Qu’est-ce t’en penses?
C’est pas pire.
— What d’ya think?
— It’s not bad.

Inquiète-toi pas. C’est pas si pire que ça.
Don’t worry. It’s not that bad.

If something’s “not bad,” or pas pire, does that mean it’s good? Not necessarily. But if one thing’s for sure, it’s not full-on bad. Or, at least, that’s the case with the three examples above.

Lisa’s Facebook update is different though. We really can interpret her use of pas pire as meaning “good” (and not just good but very good indeed). Saying “not bad” here is a form of understatement meant to make you smile.

Even more interesting is that she uses the expression pas pire in an unusual way — like an adjective that describes the fun to be had:

du fun — du pas pire fun
some fun — some not-bad fun

>>> risquer

On risque d’avoir du pas pire fun!

Literally, risquer (de faire quelque chose) means “to risk (doing something),” but we can translate risquer better here as “might” or “just might.”

Tu risques d’avoir du fun!
You just might have fun!

Écoute ça, tu risques d’aimer.
Listen to this, you might like it.

This usage might surprise you (or “risks” surprising you?) because there’s no real risk involved in these examples; there isn’t the negative sense you might have expected.

In colloquial Québécois French, the verb risquer is often used like this, in the general sense of “might.” There doesn’t necessarily have to be the risk of a negative outcome for it to be used.

If you haven’t already, check out Lisa LeBlanc and her music.

Mais attention — vous risquez d’aimer. 😀

_ _ _

You’ll find all OffQc entries related to Lisa LeBlanc here.

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We’ve seen before that the expression c’est le fun can mean “it’s fun” in Québécois French.

C’est le fun can mean something else, though. Can you guess what it means in these sentences?

  • C’est le fun de te voir heureuse.
  • C’est le fun de savoir que tout va bien.
  • C’est le fun que tu m’en parles.
  • C’est le fun de pouvoir m’entraîner avec lui.
  • C’est le fun de recevoir tous ces mots d’encouragement.
  • C’est le fun que les journées rallongent.
  • C’est le fun que ça commence à marcher.

It doesn’t feel quite right to say that c’est le fun means “it’s fun” in these sentences, does it? That’s because le fun here means “great,” or génial.

C’est le fun de te voir heureuse.
It’s great to see you happy.

C’est le fun de savoir que tout va bien.
It’s great to know that everything is going well.

C’est le fun que tu m’en parles.
It’s great that you’re talking to me about it.

C’est le fun de pouvoir m’entraîner avec lui.
It’s great to be able to train with him.

C’est le fun de recevoir tous ces mots d’encouragement.
It’s great to receive all these words of encouragement.

C’est le fun que les journées rallongent.
It’s great that the days are getting longer.

C’est le fun que ça commence à marcher.
It’s great that it’s starting to work.

Here’s a pronunciation tip: c’est le fun (three syllables) is often pronounced as c’est l’fun (two syllables). To pronounce it this second way, first say c’est. Now say c’est again with an L sound on the end. (It sounds sort of like the English word “sail.”) Then say fun.

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