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Posts Tagged ‘pogner au coeur’

I found the interesting quote below in the Journal de Montréal (27 August 2015, p.5). It was said by a woman talking about how the water in her area has been dirty, smelly and undrinkable for the past five years:

C’est pas buvable! C’est même pas sentable! Tu entres dans ta douche et l’odeur te pogne au coeur.
It’s not drinkable! It’s not even “smellable”! You go in your shower and the smell is just sickening.

L’odeur te pogne au coeur… This literally means the smell grabs your heart (the informal verb pogner means to grab, catch, etc.), but we can understand it as meaning that the smell hits you in the gut and makes you want to be sick. Why? Because the water’s pas sentable, it stinks.

That’s the really interesting usage in this quote — pas sentable. If something’s not drinkable, c’est pas buvable. And if it’s pas sentable, then it’s… not smellable!

Pogner au coeur can also be used in the sense of evoking strong emotions. For example, you might say of a touching story: ça m’a pogné au coeur, it went straight to my heart.

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