This post is all about how the Québécois marde can be used. Yes, that’s right, shit. Below — 6 examples. Let’s begin.
This image is entirely unrelated to the contents of this post.
T’ES DANS’ MARDE, MAN…
The first thing you can do with shit in Québec is get yourself in it. (Try not to.) T’es dans’ marde, man. You’re screwed, man. You’re in trouble.
T’es is a spoken language contraction of tu es. T’es sounds like té.
Dans’ is a spoken contraction of dans la. First, la loses its l, which leaves us with dans ’a. When you say dans ’a, the ’a gets virtually swallowed up in the vowel sound of dans. There’s perhaps still a trace of it left over, but, practically speaking, we can say that dans la marde sounds like dans marde (although, in reality, dans is probably held just a millisecond longer than a regular dans in this case). We can use an apostrophe — dans’ — to signal that there used to be a la (or a contracted ’a) in there: dans’ marde.
AH BEN MAUDITE MARDE!
You can express anger by damning shit. The interjection maudite marde literally means damned shit, but you can use it the way you might say things in English like damn it, bloody hell or even just shit. Maudite marde, j’ai perdu ma Rolex! Damn it, I lost my Rolex!
For effect, maybe you’ll even want to add ah ben to it. Despite its spelling, ben sounds like the French word bain. In other words, the en of ben sounds like the nasalised in, not en! We could also spell it bin to make it phonetic, but the spelling ben is much more common. Ben is a contraction of bien. Ah ben helps to add desperation. Ah ben maudite marde! Well, damn it! Well, shit!
ÇA VAUT PAS D’LA MARDE
If you’re having a shitty day, maybe you’ll want to exclaim, aujourd’hui, ma vie, c’est d’la marde. My life’s shit today. Well, that’s what Lisa LeBlanc said in a song, anyway. You might even want to take it a step further and say, aujourd’hui, ma vie, ça vaut pas d’la marde. My life’s not worth shit today.
D’la is a spoken language contraction of de la. This contraction is used quite literally all the time. In ça vaut pas d’la marde, if you visualise the the d’ as coming at the end of pas instead of the beginning of la, you’ll probably find it easier to pronounce. In other words, first say pas with a d sound on the end of it, then say la.
J’VAS Y DONNER D’LA MARDE
Christmas is the season of giving, so why not give some shit? J’vas y donner d’la marde means I’m gonna give him shit, which is really just a shitty way of saying I’m gonna yell at him.
J’vas is a spoken language equivalent of je vais. The vas in j’vas rhymes with pas. To pronounce the contracted j’vas, just say vas with the French j sound on the front of it, all in one syllable.
Y here is a spoken language contraction of lui. (J’vas lui donner d’la marde.) There’s no liaison between vas and y.
MANGE DON’ D’LA MARDE!
If you’re gonna give someone shit, then you might as well go all the way and tell him to eat it – if you’re prepared to take a fistful of shit in the face in return, that is. Mange don’ d’la marde! Eat shit, will you! Don’ here is really donc, but don’t pronounce the c.
AH PIS D’LA MARDE!
Pis sounds like pi. It rhymes with the French word si. Pis is a contraction of puis.
Have you run out of shits to give while making a decision? Ah pis d’la marde! Imagine a child taking her first steps on her own in the living room with her parents looking on encouragingly. She takes one step, then two, then… boom! She crashes to the floor. She knows she’s supposed to get back up and try again; she can see the fiery glow of excitement in her parents’ eyes. But trying again is hard work. What she really wants to do is sit down and throw up her lunch.
She hesitates… try again or sit and throw up? try again or sit and throw up? OK, fine, I’ll try just one more time for mummy and daddy. But just as she begins to push herself up, she changes her mind. It’s just not worth the effort, and that mashed butternut squash she just ate really isn’t sitting right in her stomach. She sits back down, and, much to the horror of her parents, exclaims with resignation, ah pis d’la marde! Ah screw it!
Keep reading about swearing in Québécois French:
Read Full Post »