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Posts Tagged ‘marde’

A pedestrian walking eastward in Montréal crossed the street. Although he had the right of way, a car making a turn at the intersection attempted to cut him off. Angry, the pedestrian yelled at the driver of the car:

Mange d’la marde!

When the pedestrian reached the other side, he crossed the street yet again, this time heading south. That’s when another car passed in front of him, even though he again had the right of way. The pedestrian also yelled at this second driver:

Enweille, épaisse!!

As he yelled it, he motioned with his arms for the driver to get out of his way.

In the first quote, as you may have guessed, the expression manger de la marde means to eat shit.

In the second quote, enweille! is used to tell the driver to get a move on, as in move it!, come on! Épais, and the feminine form épaisse, are used in Québec to call someone an idiot.

Mange d’la marde!
Eat shit!

Enweille, épaisse!!
Move it, you idiot!!

Where does enweille! come from? Enweille! is an imperative form, deriving from the verb envoyer. It’s a colloquial pronunciation of envoye!, and you’ll sometimes see it spelled like that too in literature, in the dialogue of a character. In informal writing, you’ll see different variations: enweille!, anweille!, awèye!, etc.

As an adjective, épais means thick. In colloquial language, épais can also be used as an adjective or noun in the sense of idiot.

T’es ben épaisse de dire ça.
You’re such an idiot for saying that.

(T’es is a contraction of tu es; it sounds like té. Ben is a contraction of bien; it sounds like the French word bain and means very here. You can learn about high-frequency contracted forms used in colloquial Québécois French with OffQc’s Contracted French ebook and audio.)

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In a recent article in the Journal de Montréal, a journalist provided examples of swearing committed by politicians.

I’ve listed the examples below, with a translation into English. Be prepared for foul language.

1. Va chier
Fuck off; literally, it means go shit
— Christine St-Pierre

2. Vieille plotte
Old cunt
— Thomas Mulcair

3. Tas de merde
The insult was said in English as piece of shit; the French here is the newspaper’s translation of that, but a more authentic wording would be tas de marde
— Justin Trudeau

4. Grosse crisse
Fat fuck; had this been said to a man, it would’ve been gros crisse
— Norman MacMillan

5. Fuck off
Not too hard to figure out…
— Pierre Elliott Trudeau

6. Crisser dehors
This expression means to throw someone the fuck out, to fucking get rid of someone
— Christine Moore

7. Crosseurs
A crosseur is someone who screws other people over
— Thomas Mulcair

8. Crisse de folle
Crazy bitch; more literally, it means fucking madwoman
— Danielle St-Amand

9. Maudite chienne
Damn bitch
— Jean Charest

Reference

“Vos députés se chicanent, s’insultent et s’excusent” by Sarah-Maude Lefebvre in Journal de Montréal, 20 March 2016, pp. 22-23. Online here

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A few posts back, we looked at different examples using marde. Let’s turn that post about marde into part 1 of a new series about swearing in Québécois French and continue now with part 2: maudit.

One of the examples in part 1 was:

AH BEN MAUDITE MARDE!

Do you remember what this means from part 1? The expression 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! You might add ah ben before it (ben is a contraction of bien; it sounds like the French word bain), as in ah ben maudite marde! Well, damn it! Well, shit!

Before we start looking at more examples of maudit, let’s check how it’s pronounced.

You’ll remember that the letter d in fact sounds like dz (like the dz sound in the English words beds, heads, etc.) when it comes before the French i sound, as it does in maudit. This means maudit sounds like mô-dzi (ô sounds like oh), or, using English approximations, like moh-dzee. The feminine form maudite sounds like mô-dzite. But, rather than sounding like the English word eat, the ite ending of maudite sounds much like the English word it, with a short i sound. In other words, using English approximations, maudite sounds like moh-dzit, not moh-dzeet.

MAUDIT QUE C’EST CHER!

You can use maudit que to add a lot of emphasis. Maudit que c’est cher! Damn that’s expensive! Maudit que t’es chanceuse! Damn you’re lucky! Maudit que t’es beau! Damn you look good!

C’EST QUOI TON MAUDIT PROBLÈME?

Maudit is an adjective, so you can put it before a noun and damn it. C’est quoi ton maudit problème? What’s your damn problem? Just remember to use the masculine or feminine form as necessary. C’est quoi c’te maudite affaire-là? What is that damn thing? (C’te is an informal, spoken form of cette; it sounds like te with an s sound on the front of it: s’te.Maudite journée d’marde, j’ai pogné un ticket. Damn shitty day, I got a ticket. (Pogné sounds like ponnyé. The final t in ticket is pronounced, and the stress falls on the final syllable.)

Y’ÉTAIT EN MAUDIT

If someone’s really angry, that person can be said to be en maudit. Y’était en maudit. He was pissed off. Tout le monde est en maudit contre lui. Everybody’s pissed off with him. Ça va mettre tout le monde en maudit. That’s going to piss everybody off. (In spoken language, mettre can lose its final re, meaning it’ll sound like mette.)

If you want to say je suis en maudit, know that je suis en can contract in spoken language — first je suis contracts to j’s’, which sounds like the French ch (like the ch in choix), and then a t sound slips in. Ch-t-en maudit, then, is a spoken pronunciation of je suis en maudit.

Y’EN AVAIT EN MAUDIT

En maudit has another meaning — a hell of a lot. Je l’aime en maudit. I love it/him/her a hell of a lot. Y’en avait en maudit. There was a hell of a lot (of it). There were a hell of a lot (of them). (Y’en avait en maudit is a contraction of il y en avait en maudit. If you’re not sure how en works in il y en avait, you can start learning about that here. Or the short answer: en means of it, of them, and it gets placed before the verb avait.)

Keep reading about swearing in Québécois French:

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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.

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:

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Montréal

Here are 3 examples of French using swear words heard in Québec. They’re taken from Facebook comments.

Maudit que t’es beau!
Damn you’re good-looking!
Damn you look good!

C’est pas d’sa faute si c’est un esti d’cave.
It’s not his fault if he’s a fucking idiot.

Maudite marde.
Holy shit. Damn it.

Do you remember how to pronounce maudit like the Québécois? The letter d sounds like dz when it’s followed by the French i sound. (It’s like the dz sound in the English word lads.) So maudit sounds like [modzi], and maudite sounds like [modzit].

In English, you say a fucking idiot, but in French it’s un esti de cave, with de placed between esti (fucking) and cave (idiot). You can’t say un esti cave. In our example above, the de is contracted informally to d’.

C’est un esti d’cave from the example can contract even further: c’t’un esti d’cave, where c’est is reduced to just a st sound before un.

C’est pas d’ma faute means it’s not my fault.

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On Urbania in “Il ne fait définitivement pas beau dans le métro,” Marie Darsigny writes about her displeasure with taking the métro.

She says:

Mon rêve : une bataille générale à Berri-UQAM, où je sors ma sandwich et l’effouerre dans la face de mon prochain.

My dream: a brawl at Berri-UQAM, where I take out my sandwich and squash it in the face of the person next to me.

A few interesting things to look at in this quote:

1. Your dictionary probably says un sandwich, but it’s used here in the feminine instead — ma sandwich. You’ll often hear sandwich used in the feminine, particularly in spoken language.

2. The verb effoirer means to squash, to crush. This verb is an informal usage. It didn’t even make it into the Usito dictionary.

The author has used a pronunciation variation, and then spelled that variation phonetically (effouerrer).

I squash my sandwich in the face of the person next to me.
J’effoire ma sandwich dans la face de mon prochain.
Or using the author’s variation:
J’effouerre ma sandwich dans la face de mon prochain.

The Wiktionnaire article for effoirer says the following about this verb’s spelling variations:

Variantes orthographiques
Elles sont très nombreuses : ce verbe étant essentiellement oral, il est très souvent transcrit phonétiquement par la personne qui l’écrit. Par exemple, on trouve effouarer, effouerer, effouérer, effouèrer, éffoirer, éffouarer, éffouèrer, éffouérer, éffouerer, effouairer, éfouérer.

Got all that?

The reflexive verb s’effoirer has a different meaning. For example, s’effoirer sur le divan means to crash on the sofa. The same Wiktionnaire article gives this example of it: J’ai juste le goût de m’effoirer sur le divan, I just feel like crashing on the sofa.

3. Can you say how dans la face in the quote might be pronounced spontaneously? Dans la can contract in informal speech, but do you remember how?

Maybe you’ll remember from past posts the expression dans la marde, which contracts informally to dans’ marde in spoken language. T’es dans’ marde means you’re screwed. Dans’ is a spoken reduction of dans la.

The same reduction can occur in dans la face.

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Marie Darsigny, Il ne fait définitivement pas beau dans le métro, Urbania, 17 February 2015.

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I like Lisa LeBlanc’s profile description on Twitter (@lisaleblancyo):

J’fais du Folk-Trash, j’viens d’un village de 40 personnes pi j’u tannée de chanter des chansons fi-filles.

I do trash folk, I come from a village of 40 people an’ I’m sick of singing girly-girl songs.

Le folk-trash is what Lisa LeBlanc calls her musical genre. Her music is folk, but the lyrics are bolder and… trashier.

For example, her song called Câlisse-moi là means “Fucking dump me,” and the one called Ma vie, c’est de la marde means “My life is shitty.”

We’ve seen hundreds of times on OffQc that pis is very frequently used as a synonym of et. Pis is a contraction of puis. It’s pronounced pi, and that’s exactly how Lisa LeBlanc has chosen to spell it here.

Unlike et though, pis is an informal usage only. We can say pis is just as informal sounding (and just as normal sounding) as English’s “and” contracted to “an’.”

What’s that j’u in there? It means je suis. We’ve also seen many, many times on OffQc how je suis can contract informally to j’suis, which sounds like chu or chui. Lisa LeBlanc has chosen to spell it as j’u here, but it sounds like chu.

Do you wonder where the ch sound in chu comes from? When je suis contracts to j’suis, the j’s is pronounced ch.

The informally contracted j’s always sounds like ch, which is also why je sais contracted to j’sais sounds like ché.

Every self-respecting learner of Québécois French must master the expression être tanné de! It means “to be fed up with,” “to be tired of,” “to be sick of,” “to have had enough of.”

The expression être tanné de can be followed by a noun or a verb: Chu tannée de chanter des chansons fi-filles. Chu tannée des chansons fi-filles.

Remember that tannée is the feminine form; the masculine form is tanné.

One last word to look at from the description: fi-fille. If Lisa LeBlanc’s music is trash folk or du folk-trash, then it’s definitely not gonna sound all prissy with sappy love songs and shit. I mean, just fuckin’ câlisse-moi là, right?

The fi part of fi-fille is a shortening of fille. If we wanted to translate fi-fille very literally, we’d get gi-girl or gi-girly. Nobody says that in English though, so fi-fille means “prissy,” “girly-girl” or just “girly.”

If you had trouble understanding Lisa LeBlanc’s profile description at the beginning of this post, read it again now:

J’fais du Folk-Trash, j’viens d’un village de 40 personnes pi j’u tannée de chanter des chansons fi-filles.

Now go read or reread all the posts on OffQc related to Lisa LeBlanc or discover her trashy, anti-fi-fille music on her website!

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