Home » Search results for 'joual'

Search Results for: joual

Joual, Informal French – an Audio Post with Explanations (#23)

Joual

A post about “our” style of French

[If you’re looking for the audio recordings which I made, which a number of people are asking me for, you can find them 3/4 of the way down].

This blog post may be of interest to a wider Anglophone Canadian audience, but in particular for those who are learning French.  In my blogs, I’ve been encouraging you to do some web searches and take in some songs, musicians and bits of TV & movies.

A few times I’ve mentioned in earlier posts that there are people who speak “Joual” (such as the previous blog on Fabienne Larouche).  Basically, it’s just a term for very informal speech.  In many ways it could be synonymous with the word “Slang” in English.   Thus, in English we also have informal speech (a Joual if you will), and 90% of the time, we’re not even aware we’re speaking it.

Example:  “I headed down the strip and got me a good cold one at that happenin’ joint I often hit at the tail-end of the week”.   If we were to speak grammatically correct English with words according to the dictionary, the sentence would become “went down the street and boughtbeer at the busy bar I often go to on a Friday“.   Now imagine being someone who is trying to learn English at a basic or basic-intermediate level, and you come face to face with the first sentence;  chances are you would not understand – especially if it is said with a heavy accent.

The same phenomenon occurs in French too, but it can become much more informal in Québec French and other styles of Canadian French.  This informal way of speaking (or slang) is called Joual.   

But don’t let this turn you off from trying to improve your French.  Luckily for those learning French, newscasts, movies, many mainstream movies, much of what is discussed in interviews on television, and the vast majority of literature is in international, standard French, simply with various Québec accents or other regional accents.  The more you learn standard French, the more you’ll be able to pick-up bits and pieces of day-to-day informal speech, or Joual.

Joual is not a separate language, anymore than what casual and informal English is.  Although some people say they are speaking “Québécois” when referring to Joual, it’s not restricted to Québec and it exists in all types of Canadian French (my audio example below is one such example).  Different regions within Québec and in other regions in Canada do have variations of Joual (just as there are different styles of informal speech of English in different parts of the US, or Newfoundland, or the Maritimes, or the Prairies) – but all forms of Joual are still relatively simliar.   Because of Montréwood media and the large number of Joual speakers in Montréal, Montréal Joual is the form most often heard.

Where you may encounter Joual more frequently is in rural regions of Québec and certain areas of larger cities.  But Joual is spoken by all aspects of society (even Denise Bombardier – someone who is known in Québec for being the prime torch bearer for how international French should be spoken — has said she speaks it at home – I didn’t see that one coming when I heard it!).  Joual is also heavily used in comedy.   It’s the colloquial “street talk” that gives the audience a base denominator for many many jokes.  So don’t be surprised to hear it at the Juste Pour Rire! comedy festival, on the radio when jokes are being told, and in conversations about sports.

A Word of caution… sitcoms and drama series on television will often include a certain amount of Joual for added effect.  But don’t become too discouraged.  I once read that many sitcoms and dramas, in English at any rate, are written at level that a six year old can understand (they’re supposed to be family programs after all).  So the Joual used on television shows is often quite basic (in real life it can get much much more hard-core than the bits you hear on TV).  In this sense, sitcoms and dramas are an excellent way to begin to acquaint yourself with basic Joual and to begin to understand it over time.

The explanations I’m giving here are very broad and general.  Linguists have much finer definitions of Joual, and some say Joual is specifically from Montréal, but that it has different names depending on regional differences within Québec and elsewhere in Canada  (Brayon/ Edmonston in NW New Brunswick & La Beauce, Chiac/Acadie, Vallois, Magoua, Chaouin, autre Acadie, Prairies, Rivière Rouge/Manitobain, Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean, Sudburois/Ontario, Cajun/Louisianne, Paw Paw/Missouri, etc.).   For simplicity sake, and for the purposes of this blog, I’ll refer to all of these together as Joual (they’re often grouped together as Joual in the media, anyway).

Linguists are clear in stating Joual is NOT a creole (just as informal English is not Creole).  Nor is it a separate language, and even classifying it as a dialect of French may not be correct since the bar of what constitutes a dialect can be quite loose.  At its most basic level, it’s just very informal speech, often with more informalities than what Canadian English has (but perhaps other forms of English elsewhere in the world can become equally informal).

The only two ways I can think of how two explain Joual, in a more definitive sense, to Canadian Anglophones is (1) through providing comparisons using English, and (2) through actual audio examples.

(1) English Comparisons

There are certain regional accents and regional vocabularies of English in some rural parts of Ireland and Scotland which I have had a very difficult time understanding (perhaps understanding only 20% – 30%).  This is because my ear is not accustomed to hearing the regional accent and words (I recall I had a discussion with a business contact from a very rural region of Ireland, and being Anglophone myself, I was completely embarrassed that I was not able to easily understand when he asked me some basic work-related questions in his variation of rural Irish English).   There are also regions of the Deep South in the US where I’ve had difficulty understanding certain individual’s English accents and vocabulary (we don’t hear it so much in Canada because television networks in the US often do not air more-difficult-to-understand accents, and when they do, they often use sub-titles).

But this does not mean these examples of informal speech are not English.  I am sure that given a couple months living in the environment, I would acclimatize to their way of speaking, and it would no longer be an issue.  If the speech of these regions were to be simultaneously read on paper (or sub-titles), I would be able to follow what’s spoken, and would not have many problems understanding.   That’s precisely why these regional differences are not a different language, and often do not even meet the criteria for being a separate dialect.

Joual works on kind of the same principle.  You’ll often hear others say that people from France cannot understand people from Québec.  But what they really mean is that they can’t understand people form Québec when they are speaking Joual – it’s only a question of not being accustomed to hearing it on a regular basis.  I have known a good number of immigrants who have moved from France to Québec and who, after just a few weeks on the ground, didn’t have many issues understanding Joual.  They simply needed a bit of time to acclimatize.

Something that is interesting about Joual, and a reason why it is so difficult for many Anglophones to understand, is its pervasive use of contractions.  English has contractions (ain’t, can’t, shouldn’t, shan’t, it’ll, you’ve, y’all, nutt’in’, ‘dem’der, ask’em, give’er… , etc, etc,), many of which are very informal.  Joual seems to have so many many more of these types of contractions – often two or three contractions in the same word! – making it difficult for learners of French (as well as French people from France) to isolate and identify the words being spoken.  Throw in a strong local accent, and it becomes all the more difficult to understand – especially when the contractions are not necessarily used in International French.

I’ll give you an example:  Accoutumance in Canada means habitude (or être habitué) in international French (“accustomed to”, “to be used to”, “to be in the habit of”).  Both words (habitude and accoutumance) are used in Québec, but accoutumance is used very informally (similar to Anglo-Canadians saying “Yah, I’m pretty in-tune with it” instead of saying “Yes, I am quite used to it”). Even though accoutumance is not standard International French, someone from France could probably figure out what it means in the context of a sentence, and it would not pose a barrier to communication.  But if it’s contracted in Joual to “ac’t’m’nce” (as if we were to contract “I’d be pretty in tuned to it” to “I’j be p’t’n tun t’it”) then it likely wouln’t be understood by a learner of French or by someone from France (just as the English example wouldn’t be understood in English by someone who has never heard it said that way before).

It doesn’t mean this reflects a dialect or distinct language… it’s just means it’s a regional word that has been… well… contracted (and I mean seriously contracted, my friend!).  Now, put many of those types of words together in a conversation, sometimes one after another (just as I did in the latter English example “I’j be p’t’n tun t’it”), with a very distinct accent, a multitude of regional expressions, followed by even more contractions, and the untrained ear will likely have difficulty understanding Joual.  That’s one of the best explanations I can think of.

I’d say 80% or more of what Anglophones will encounter when going about their lives listening to and participating in Québec French will be internationally understood French, simply with a Québec accent.  From my experience, perhaps 90% of what’s spoken on Montréwood television is also internationally understood French.

But it’s good to be able to recognize the remaining 10% or 20% which may constitute Joual; if for no other reason, than to prevent yourself from becoming discouraged in your own language learning efforts.  It’s a terrible feeling to think you have hit a language learning wall after having put in so much effort to learn a language, when in fact you simply ran into a small bout of informally used French.  But if you recognize Joual for what it is, and you are aware that you encountered Joual instead of standard French, you can forgive yourself for not understanding, and just move on with a smile.

If it’s any consolation, even many Québécois find it difficult to understand different types of Joual.   (A Francophone friend of mine from Gatineau, QC was having supper with someone from Acadia in New Brunswick, and the friend from Québec had a very difficult time understanding the Joual-type language being used by the other person from Acadia.  Likewise, the same situation sometimes arises within Québec as well, such as with aspects of the Joual in the Magdaleine Islands versus that spoken in Trois-Rivières).

Audio Examples

I’ve been racking my brain for some time about how on earth I would find and present to you a good audio sample of Joual.   I spent a fair chunk of time going through YouTube videos, but quite surprisingly (or maybe unsurprisingly), there is very little in the way of good audio examples of Joual online.  The vast majority of French YouTube videos from Québec are standard, run-of-the mill French with a Québec accent, understood by all.  But that is an important point in itself… it reflects the reality that in Québec, standard French remains the lingua franca.   The very few videos which I did manage to find online were, well… quite vulgar – so I wouldn’t link to them, regardless (that’s also a characteristic of Joual, it’s rather liberal its use of profanity, but in no way does that mean it’s always profane or that swear words are always present – so no need to put winter ear muffs on the kiddies when you take a summer holiday to Québec — but during winter, that’s another story!).

I think an audio example is still the best way to help readers recognize Joual.

I’m venturing out on a very long and narrow limb — way waaaay out of my comfort zone here — to do my best to provide you with an audio example of the difference between standard French with a Québec accent, and Joual.   I made two recordings myself, with my own voice… the first one is standard French, the second one is the same story, but told in Joual.  Again, the two versions of the story are essentially the same, paragraph-by-paragraph, and in large part, sentence-for-sentence.   However, I had to change the words, syntax, and accent in each sentence to transform the standard French version into Joual.  I personally have never seen such a comparison done before — so it’s kind of a strange (but quite interesting) experience, even for me — especially while playing it back and listening to the comparison of the two versions (it becomes even more interesting when listening to the Joual version while trying to read along and follow it using the International French transcript at the bottom of this post).

The story in the audio track is based on a true story that happened to me the other night here at home in Toronto.

Plot:  The other night I had to go to bed very early for an important early morning work appointment.  At 3:00am, a car, parked nearby at a convenience store, started to blare its horn relentlessly and would not stop.   It woke up the entire neighbourhood.  My neighbours from all around began shouting at the car to stop honking.   I waited a long long time for the honking to stop, but it didn’t, and the racket outside only intensified.  Just as I was preparing to walk outside and confront the driver, the most unexpected and hilarious thing happened… I won’t spoil the ending for you, but see if you can pick it up from the audio version of the story (the very last paragraph sets it up, and the very last sentence is the punch).

A written transcript is at the very bottom of this post (with translation below it).

NOTE :  The 2nd video has a heavily Alberta French style of Joual, but it’s close enough to numerous styles in Eastern Québec… you’ll get the the drift.  🙂

Like I said… I sure ventured out of my comfort zone by making these audio tracks… so wish me luck !!!

Audio File One – Standard French with Québec / Canada accent

Posted on YouTube:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFcw4XxB81U

Audio File Two – Rural-style Joual

(turn on the “closed captions” mode in YouTube to follow along in Joual).

Posted on YouTube:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srB47x2XWCM

Something to also note is that Joual, when spoken, is often lightly speckled in and out of regular standard French sentences and paragraphs (just as in English), rather than comprising the entirety of a conversation or story (as I presented it here).  But interestingly, sometimes there are a minority of people out there who communicate predominately in Joual (those people are are more rare, and not the majority, but you may run into them — and it’s always interesting when you do).

Bonne écoute!


Transcript in French (For the standard French audio recording).   See if you can follow the standard, International French transcript below when listening to the Joual verson — my Joual version came from my standard French version below.  A translation is at the very bottom.

Je me suis couché l’autre soir assez de bonne heure car il fallait me lever plus tôt que d’habitude le lendemain matin. J’avais un client important à rencontrer. Alors, pour expliquer un peu la scène, pas loin de chez moi se trouve une artère principale avec un dépanneur à 24hrs. Parfois, durant la nuit, on pourrait y voir des voitures qui s’y stationnent illégalement dans la rue en face du dépanneur lorsque les chauffeurs y courent dedans pour chercher du lait ou autre.

Mais cette nuit-là, vers 3hrs le matin, je me suis brusquement levé au son d’un klaxon qui n’arrêtait pas de sonner. Je ne parle pas d’un klaxon court et intermittent, comme on a l’habitude d’entendre. Non, c’était le klaxon des klaxons. C’était clair et certain, que la personne qui appuyait sur le petit bouton rond au volant n’avait guère l’intention d’y relâcher.

Alors, quoi faire… devrais-je attendre encore une minute de plus? Peut-être deux minutes? Voire même trois? Et puis, quoi? Ouvrir la fenêtre lui crier à haute voix? Bon, j’attendrais encore un peu – malgré tout, ça ne pourrait pas durer bien longtemps.

Mais ça durait, et à ma grande surprise, je n’avais rien à faire moi-même car tout le voisinage dans son entier commençait à crier auprès du chauffeur. Les voisins criaient des deux côtés de la rue, des hommes, des femmes, et même des chiens ont commencé japper. En regardant dehors, j’ai vu les lumières s’ouvrant une à une dans toutes les fenêtres du quartier. Combiné avec les coups de klaxon, je n’exagère pas en vous disant que le bruit était assourdissant.

Bon, je n’en pouvais plus! Je m’apprêtais moi-même sortir lui dire ses quatre vérités. Mais, j’avais juste assez de temps d’ouvrir la porte de maison quand j’ai vu une vieille dame, peut-être 85 ans sortir du dépanneur elle-même, bien accroché à son déambulateur, s’approcher de la voiture, ouvrir la porte, et – écoutez-ça… laisser son chien descendre faire pee pee.

TRANSLATION:

I went to bed fairly early last night because I had to wake up earlier than usual the next day.  I had an important client I had to meet.   Thus, to explain the situation, not far from where I live is a major road with a 24 hour convenience store.  Sometimes, during the night, you can hear cars who illegally park in the street in front of the convenience store when the drivers run inside to buy milk or other things.

But this particular night, around 3:00am, I was suddenly woken by the sound of a horn which wouldn’t let up.  I’m not talking about a normal short honking, like you would be used to hearing.  Non… It was the ultimate horn of all horns.  It was very clear that the person laying on the steering wheel button had no intention of letting up.

So, what should I do?  Should I wait for another minute?  Perhaps two?  Maybe even three?  And then what?  Open the window and yell at him?  Well, I though it best to wait a little longer — after all, I was sure it wouldn’t last forever.

But it did last, and to my great surprise, I didn’t have to take any action at all myself because the whole neighbourhood, in its entirety, began yelling at the driver.  The neighbours were yelling from both sides of the street – men, women, and even the dogs began to bark.  When I looked outside, I could see all the windows of the neighbourhood light up one-by-one.  Add to this the honking noise, and I’m not exaggerating when I tell you it was deafening.

Ok, I couldn’t take it anymore!  I was now getting ready to go outside myself and give the driver a piece of my mind.  But just as I opened the house door, I saw an only lady, perhaps 85 years old, exit the convenience store, hunched over her walker, walking towards the car.  She then opened the car door and — get this — let her dog out to take a whiz.


A bit of additional information regarding my Alberta & Prairie influenced French accent & Joual vocabulary.

I have received a number of emails from people asking questions (particularly from very curious Québécois who say it sounds very familiar to them — like a variation of rural or remote Eastern Québec French – but that they can’t quite place it.  A few people told me they thought it sounds similar to Acadian Chiac French from New Brunswick – bit I do NOT think it sounds anything like Acadian Chiac French):

Regarding the above Joual audio track… my own accent & colloquial vocabulary very much has its roots in rural Western Canada.  Therefore, the style of Joual I grew up with in rural Alberta does has some variations from Montréal Joual (many people I’ve spoken with in the past believe “Prairie French” (or le français prairien) has more in common with Québec North-Coast (Côte-Nord) slang than it does with Montréal slang.

You can read much more about it in the section on Prairie French Accents (click here).
Here is a map with the region from where I grew up and which speaks the above style of Prairie French Joual.

AB-SK7

Any time I have visited the Québec North-Coast, people there had no problems understanding my joual, whereas people in Southern regions of Québec have had a more difficult time understanding my Joual.   I too have relatively few problems understanding Québec North-Coast Joual, whereas I know of people in Montréal and Gatineau who have difficulty understanding Québec North-Coast Joual.  That’s why I think there is more in common between “hardcore” rural “Prairien” French and Québec North-Coast French.

You can contrast Prairie French Joual with Montréal East End Joual in by listening to the Montréal style in the following video:

And again, you can contrast this with very informal speech from the Saguenay region of Québec (the following audio tract from post #329).
I wrote subtitles and added them to the video considering that it may be difficult for some people to understand (turn on the CC button at the bottom of the video)

On the subject of various styles of French, you may be interested in the blog series I did on various accents.  There are explanations, maps, and video examples of French from various regions of Canada (32 general regions).  The last post on French from the Western Province Accents gives more context to the above audio tracts I presented you with.

SERIES:  OUR 32 ACCENTS (7 POSTS)

You might also be interested in this blog post I wrote on European French (the latter half talks about how learning European French comes with its own challenges, and the very last addendum at the bottom contains a very interesting French language “surprise”):  TV5, & European French.


A Fun, Semi-Related Language Challenge:

On the topic of regional slangs & accents, we all have them.  The following can help to put it all into context.

As I stated above, English has quite a number of difficult to-under-stand accents and slang.  We all know that Canadian English in the Maritime Provinces and in Newfoundland & Labrador can be very different, but if you ever doubted that Western Canadian English also has various kinds of “English Joual”, then check out the following video of a style of Canadian English (accent & vocabulary) unique to Saskatchewan.  1000 points to you if you get through it without having to look at the subtitles (but you don’t get any points if you’re from the Prairies – especially from Saskatchewan! – because that wouldn’t be fair).

And then there is the Newfoundland English accent from Canada’s most Eastern province.   It can get quite “hurly!”  I think it’s great!!  (Who said travelling across Canada can’t be a language adventure).   Anyway, here it is…

Just as you think it couldn’t get any worse, you then run into… well… THIS !!!  SAY WHAT !?!?!  (Coming from rural Alberta, I might still have a soft spot for the country… but boy, when I run into this type of rural Ontario talk West of Barrie, even I’m sidewinded!  It sure makes me run back to Toronto, only 90 minutes South, with my tail between my legs!!).

But compared to Scottish accents and slang, Canadian English can often seem tame.  Here’s a video of a heavy Scottish accent and slang:

And here is a heavy rural Irish accent for good measure.  I once had business acquaintance from Ireland who traveled to my side of the ocean to attend a meeting – and he spoke with the type of accent in the video below.   It was the most embarrassing meeting I ever had.  After constantly having to ask him to repeat himself as we discussed our business together, he finally asked me “Don’t you speak English?”  I just answered “I guess not!”

And here is another video of colloquial Scotts English for good measure and to help put it all in perspective.

Let’s go fishing… and learn hard-core French while you’re at it! – Post 6 of 6 (#329)

SERIES:  COLLOQUIAL (SPOKEN) FRENCH – HARD-CORE LEARNING EXERCISE (6 POSTS)

————————————————————

WARNING:  This particular post contains a lot of very crude language, and may be offensive for certain people.  Consider yourself warned.

This is the final post in a series of six posts which provides examples of colloquial (spoken) French.

I have good news and bad news for you.

First with the bad news:

This is the most difficult of the six posts.  I perfectly understand that if you are trying to learn French (especially spoken informal French, which involves a good deal of JOUAL, slang, contractions, and regional accents), a post like this may make you feel extremely discouraged… almost as if Mount Everest is staring you straight in the face.   But don’t be (I’ll get to that a little further down).

Difficulty levels 6

I consider this the most difficult of the six audio tracts because:

  • of its speed,
  • there is a noticeable regional accent from the Saguenay-Lac St-Jean region of Québec (see map below — the Green part near the top),

v'cb1.3

  • the caller mixes up his tenses. He uses
    • the present tense for the past,
    • the past tense and imparfait for the present,
    • the future for the past,
    • the subjunctive is completely out the window (take that all you French teachers! — Yes, I’m talking to you “Madame C.” — all those years of trauma you put me through!),
    • and I think he even threw in the literary passé-simple at one point – I mean really??? Who does that?!  (At 0:53, I actually think he said “renversa” instead of “renversé”)
  • some words and expressions are really out there… I mean really really out there (good luck finding them in the dictionary).  I think he even invented a couple of new words.
  • Contractions, contractions, contractions – did I mention contractions?

Now with the good news:

It does not get much more difficult than this – truly.  (I can think of only a handful of other French accents and ways of speaking which are more challenging than this).  And even this is something you would rarely run into (especially if the bulk of your dealings will be with people from urban centres).

Don’t worry, because you will NEVER hear people speak like this on television.  Nothing in books, newspapers or magazines is ever written as it is spoken here.  Even 90% of radio stations would not feature people who speak like this.

Therefore, do not become discouraged, and be thankful that it cannot get any worse than this.  I say this because as you gradually improve your French through the ranks of the “intermediate” levels, you will actually begin to understand parts of the written transcript below.  Thus if you can begin to understand this (even in small doses), then you’re well on your way to beginning to understand ANYTHING! (truly – trust me).

You may recall that I stated in the post on JOUAL that it is rare to find people who truly express everything in Joual.  This is almost one of those instances.  If anything, the rareness of it should leave you more with a sense of curiosity and desire to continue to learn, rather than with a sense of discouragement.

For North American readers, you could almost think of it this way:

In the Southern U.S., there are pockets of populations with extreme accents which are very difficult for others to understand (even in other parts of the Southern US).  You will never hear them on television or the radio because nobody would be able to understand them.  The majority of the people do not speak like them.  For people learning English, knowing that such ways of speaking exist should not at all be a reason to become discouraged.  After all, there is no relation.  It’s simply interesting to know that very “informal / colloquial” ways of speaking simply exist out there.

Here is a perfect example of what I mean (using the Virginia “Tangier Island” accent / grammar as an example).  Fast-forward to 0:38 amd be prepared to be shocked at this English:

 ————————————————————————————-

FORTUNATELY…

There is a blog devoted to making sense of all this French colloquial madness.

www.OffQc.com

The next post at OffQc will be Felix’s 1000th blog post on the topic (big day!!).   He has gone to a tremendous amount of work to help non-Francophones learn the in’s and out’s of informal spoken French (as it is spoken on our side of the ocean).

He has a very unique site, and I have never seen anything else which compares to it.  Check it out when you have a moment.

My hat goes off to him.

————————————————————————————-

A few things to note before we dive into it:

NOTE 1:  In the English translation below, I added a good number of things in (PARENTHESIS) in order for the story to make better sense.  If you ignore what is in parenthesis, then it is pretty much exactly as it is spoken.

NOTE 2:  I tried to provide as true an English translation as possible.  So if the English looks screwy, that’s how it also sounds in French.

After translating colloquial hick French into colloquial hick English, I actually feel like I lost a few brain cells in the process… so excuse the way I worded it in English.

My way of translating the below segment into English couldn’t possibly be any worse than the terrible French verb tenses, slang and wording the caller was using.  I mean seriously… “renvenir” instead of “revenir”??? Where did he even find that extra n !?!?  And is “parcédumé” even a word???  Well folks, I guess it is now – hahaha!

Actually, kidding aside, I should be the last person to point fingers.  After all, I grew up pronouncing CH as a heavy “H”, and “éch” as “tch”, and even dumb things like “J’ai”, I grew up as pronouncing as “H’ai”.   Also, my “ère” and “eur” are very very strange to many people.

So I suppose I should be the first to admit that my own day-to-day colloquial French and accent might be considered “hick” by a good number of people (straight from rural Alberta).  But cripes… I will say that this recording sure gave me stiff competition!

(You can hear my Alberta accent and Joual in the post on PRAIRIE FRENCH)

Before I present you with the video, when you read the English translation which follows, try to picture it being spoken with “THIS” hick English accent from the most rural parts of Ontario (It makes the whole thing even more funny if you try to transpose this rural Ontario hick accent in your mind onto the English translation I wrote below).

And yes… this sort of country-bumpkin English accent does exist in the further rural depths of Ontario.  Ever take a drive down highway 7 starting around Peterborough, heading in the direction of Ottawa?  Open your mouth and in their minds you might as well be from Vancouver — or Nunavut.  But at least it makes for a pretty drive.

Now, let’s jump right into the thick of it…

————————————————————————————-

When I made the closed captions, I made an extra effort to make them light and short — making it easier to rewind and review if you so desire.

cc

Caller

  • 0:00 – Oui, allô.
  • Yes, hey there.

Host

  • 0:01 – Vous êtes en ondes.
  • You’re on the air.

Caller

  • 0:02 – Oui, parfait. Hey, j’en ai une bonne histoire, moi. 
  • Yes, great. Hey, me, I have a good story.

Host

  • 0:04 – Go!
  • Shoot!

Caller

  • 0:05 – Mais moi, je viens du Saguenay, pis quand j’avais 9 ou 10 ans, on était une gang de chums. On était quatre flos.  Ok, parfait – entre 9 et 10 ans.  Pis on faisait dur, pis on faisait des coups plats, t’sais.
  • See, me I come from Saguenay, and when I was 9 or 10 year old, we were a group of buddies. We were three kids.  Ok, good – between 9 and 10 years old.  And we never held back, and we pulled some mean stunts, ya’know. 
  • 0:13 – Fait-que là, à un moment donné, le père un de mes chums, André Péron, il dit « Hein, les p’tits gars, la semaine prochaine je vous amène au chalet…
  • So with that, at a certain moment, André Péron, the dad of one of my buddies, he says “Hey kids, next week I’m takin’ y’all to the cabin…”
  • 0:18 – …On va aller pêcher le brochet pis la truite ».
  • We’re gonna fish for Pike / Jack (fish) and trout.

Host

  • 0:20 – Parfait
  • Perfect

Caller

  • 0:20 – On est quatre flos avec le père, pis on avait un autre, un cinquième ami qui était avec nous autres. Fait-qu’on était cinq flos avec un monsieur
  • There are us four kids and the dad, and there was another, a fifth friend who was with us. So we were five kids with an adult.
  • 0:26 – Fait-que là, on arrive là-bas.
  • So then, we arrive there.
  • 0:28 – Pis l’affaire en particulier, c’est qu’à un moment donné on pêchait le brochet.
  • And the thing is, at a certain point we were fishing for Pike / Jack (fish).
  • 0:33 – On était sur le quai.
  • We were on the dock.
  • 0:34 – Pis là, il y avait une catrou avec un canot, sur le rack.
  • And there was a quad (a 4-wheel ATV) with a canoe on the rack.

c.tr.rk

This is the set-up they’re talking about with the canoe and the quad.

  • 0:38 – Fait-que là, à un moment donné, le… ‘scuse moi
  • So then, at a certain point excuse me
  • 0:42 – Le père à Nicolas, André Péron, il pluchait (éplucher) des patates s’a (sur la) gallerie.
  • Nicolas’ dad, André Péron, was peeling taters (potatos) on the porch.
  • 0:46 – Nous autres, on est tous les quatre, on recule le catrou avec le canot s’a (sur le) top, parce que lui il aimait mieux pêcher la truite. Nous autres, on aimait mieux pêcher le brochet avant le chalet
  • Us others, all four of us together, we back up the quad with the canoe on the top, because he (the dad) would rather fish for trout.  But for us, we were rather wantin’ to fish for Jack in front of the cabin.

(NOTE : Here’s some extra info for the story to make better sense… The kids were going to fish for pike from a small boat close to the edge of the lake, but the dad was going to fish for trout at greater depths. Therefore the dad was going to take the quad and canoe far away to another part of the lake, and use the canoe to fish from another location.  While the dad was peeling potatos, the four kids were preparing the canoe for the dad to take a later time).

  • 0:53 – Fait-que là, mon ami Nicolas, mon Péron, il recul le catrou – il grimpe dans la souche. À (la) catrou elle renverse sur le côté. 
  • So there, my friend Nicolas — my bud “Péron” — he backs up the quad – but he runs it into a stump (on the ground from a chopped down tree). The quad (with the canoe on top) tipped over onto its side.

Host

  • 0:59 – (Halètement / Gasp!!)

Caller

  • 0:59 – Pis le canot tombe directe sus (sur) une souche, mon chum.
  • And the canoe falls directly onto a stump, my man!
  • 1:02 – Là, le canot, il est parcédumé là – fini le canot!
  • Like, the canoe, it is like craked / split open – The canoe, it’s finished!
  • 1:05 – Fait-que là, la panique nous poinge. Mais durant ce temps-là, André Péron, il épluche ses patates su’à (sur la) gallerie.  Il est loin de nous autres et il voit rien!
  • So then, panic hits us. André Péron, he’s peelin‘ his taters (potatos) on the porch.  He (the dad) was far away from us and he ain’t see nuttin’!

Host

  • 1:11 – Hahahaha!

Caller

  • 1:11 – on est sur les nerfs ben raide.
  • But like for us, our nerves are shot.
  • 1:13 – Là on est quatre flos, on réussi à dresser le catrou.
  • We were like four kids, and we managed to flip the quad back up right.
  • 1:15 – On le park de l’autre côté pour ne pas à voir le trou, pis on retient sur nos mots.
  • We parked it on the other side (of the cabin) so ya couldn’t see the hole (in the canoe), and we swear not to utter a word (to nobody).
  • 1:18 – Le lendemain matin André dit « Bon. M’a dit moi je m’en va au pêche au lac ».
  • The next day André (the dad) said « Well I’d say I’m gonna get in some fishin’ on the lake ».

(picture this last sentence being said with a really strong “hick” accent).

Host

  • 1:21 – Ahhhhhhh! Avec un canot troué!
  • Whoooaaa!! With a split open canoe!

Caller

  • 1:23 – Ouais! Fait-que là, nous autres, il est malin – il est malin le monsieur, t’sais. 
  • Yup! So then, as for us, he’s so sly – he’s so with it, that guy (the dad), ya’ know.

(Meaning the kids thought for sure that the dad would find out, and they’d be in deep shit!)

  • 1:26 – Fait-que là, là je dis à mes chums, à Nicolas Péron, car c’est son père…
  • So then, I like say to my buddies, to Nicolas Péron, because it’s his dad…
  • 1:30 – … Je dis « crisse de fou est-il, tabarnak! Il a 20 kms de catrou à faire! ». « Ah, non, non, non! » il dit.  « Il va nous tuer, vas nous tuer! » il dit. « Il partira à (la) pêche avec ça! ». 
  • … I say, « Christ, He’s fuckinnuts!  He’s gonna head 20 kms away on that quad (to take the broken canoe fishing).  He (Nicolas) said, “No, No, No (pleading “NO!” in the sense that this can’t be happening to us!)He’s gonna to kill us… Kill us!”.  He said “He’s gonna take it (the canoe) fishing!”
  • 1:36 – Fait-que nous autres quan-qu’il va (quand il va) à catrou, on fait pas ni un, ni deux!  On saut sur le lac en avant, et on s’en va à l’autre bout du lac…
  • So the group of us, when we saw him (the dad) high-tailin’ it off with the quad, we didn’t waste a second. We jump  straight into the lake (into their own little boat), and we motored it off to the other side of the lake…
  • 1:42 – … pour être sur d’être loin, parce qu’on savait qu’il (re)viendrait.
  • … in order to be sure to be as far away as possible (from the dad), because we knew that he’d be coming back (when he found out he was fishing with a canoe that had a hole in it).
  • 1:44 – Fait-que là, il se passe à peu près, je te dirais, une demi-heure.
  • So then, I’d say somewhere in the neighbourhood of a half an hour goes by.
  • 1:48 – … On entend une catrou qui se renvient, pis ça en renvient en tabarnak, a’l catrou!
  • We hear a quad coming back in our direction, and fuck, was it ever comin’, that there quad!

Hosts x 2

  • 1:54 – HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

Caller

  • 1:53 – Ça fait que là, on voié (voit) un bout de canot de par icitte (ici) de temps en temps. Tu sais, nous autres on était à l’autre bout du lac, pis on voit de temps en temps le chemin. 
  • So then-and-there, from our spot (in the boat on the far side of the lake) we can see the tip of the canoe (poking through) from time-to-time (on the trail in the woods along the shore of the lake). Ya know, we were at the other end of the lake, and from time to time we would see the road (on which the quad was travelling).
  • 1:58 – Pis là on voit la poussière qui se leve, et on voit le catrou qui s’en vient, pis il s’en vient!!
  • And then we see the dust gettin’ all kicked up, and we see the quad a-comin’, and shit was it comin’!!
  • 2:02 – Là, je dis à Nicolas, je dis « Crisse!! »
  • Man, I say to Nicolas, I says “Oh shit!!”

Host

  • 2:03 – Ça y est!
  • You’re had / You’re cooked / There y’are! / You’re Toast !

Caller

  • 2:04 – J’ai dit « On est fait! ». Aïe, il dit « On reste à (l’)autre bord!  On reste à (l’)autre bord!  On reste icitte. » 
  • I says “We’re done-in / cooked / finished“. Well, he (Nicolas) said “We’re staying (here) on the other side (of the lake)!  We’re staying put on the other side.  We’re staying right here!”
  • 2:07 – « Hey » Il dit « Hey! Ça s’en revient l’idot. Il a pas pêché une heure de temps.  Il a pas fait son coton ». 
  • “Hey!” he (Nicolas) said. “Hey! It’s (the quad) comin’… the idiot.  He hasn’t even been gone fishin’ half an hour.  He hasn’t even broken a sweat / worked at it.

(Note the expressions “Il a pas fait son coton”… I previously gave the meaning and source for this expression in the post entitled Denys Arcand: His place in Québec’s history)

  • 2:11 – On est à l’autre bord du lac, et là son père arrive à catrou. Il tire ça, mon homme, quasiment sur deux roues.
  • We were at the other end of the lake, and like his dad was comin’ back on the quad. He (the dad) pounded it into full gear, and it was practically goin’ on two wheels.
  • 2:16 – Mais là, d’habitude il arrêtait le catrou à côté du chalet. Mais dans ce cas-là il arrêtait le catrou quasiment au bout du quai là. 
  • But usually he’s parkin’ the quad beside the cabin. But in this case, he like was parkin’ the quad practically at the tip of the dock.

Host

  • 2:20 – Il a passé tout droit!
  • He went straight through (for the edge of the dock)!

Caller

  • 2:21 – Pis là, il arrive au bout du quai, pis il débarque.  Là, je dis à Nicolas, il dit…
  • So like he gets to the tip of the dock, then he gets off (the quad).  Then, I say to Nicolas, he said…

Host

  • 2:25 – Vous êtes mort!
  • You’re dead (meat)!

Caller

  • 2:25 – Il disait « Il y a quelque chose qui se passe ».
  • He (Nicolas) said (as the four kids were watching what the dad was doing) “There’s something happenin’! ”

Host

  • 2:26 – Hahahaha

Caller

  • 2:27 – Il arrive au bout du quai. Tu sais, dans le bois, ça fait de l’écho, hein. 
  • He (the dad) gets to the end of the dock. Ya know, in the woods, things tend to echo, eh.

Host

  • 2:29 – Ouais.
  • Yup.

Caller

  • 2:30 – Ça fait que là il crie, « LES GARS!!! VIENT-EN ICITTE, TABARNAK!!! ».  Il sacrait
  • So it was like, he yelled “BOYS!!! GET YOUR FUCKIN’ ASSES HERE!!!”. He was swearin’.
  • 2:35 – Et là il dit « QUE C’EST QU’IL A !?!? » Il dit « PRENDS-MOI PAS POUR UN INNOCENT?!?!?!»
  • And then he was like “WHAT IS THIS!?!?!” He said “DO YOU TAKE ME FOR A RETARD / SOMEONE BORN YESTERDAY?!?!?!”

Note, I have a mentally handicapped cousin, so no offense… Am just translating 😉

  • 2:38 – Fait-que là, Nick il commence à ramener la chaloupe. Mais là, moi, c’était moi qui étais sur le nez de la chaloupe. 
  • So then Nick starts to take us back in our (small motor) boat. But, me, I was the one like stuck sittin’ on the front tip of the boat (as we were heading back to the dock).

chp1

Une Chaloupe… the type of boat the boys were fishing in as the dad was having his “canoe issues” elsewhere.

  • 2:43 – J’ai dit « Crisse!  Arrivé au quai, il va fesser le premier du bord. »  J’ai dit moi, je reste pas sur le bout là.
  • I says “Shit! Once we get back to the dock, (from where I’m sitting) I’m going to be the first to get smacked“. I said I ain’t stayin’ sittin’ on the front tip (of the boat).

Host

  • 2:46 – Ouais.
  • Yup.

Caller

  • 2:46 – Fait-que là, tout le monde voulait s’assire (s’assoir) et chauffer le moteur.
  • So like, all of us wanted to sit (at the back end of the boat) and steer the motor (so none of us could be in reach of his dad when we got back to the dock).
  • 2:49 – Ça fait Nick a conseillera à nous, moi, peur-moi pas d’claque, c’est pas mon père, mais les deux autres, ils ont un p’tit claque, t’sais.

(Translation into proper French / Traduction en bon français:  Alors, Nick, il nous suggérait que moi, que moi je ne devrais pas avoir peur de recevoir une claque, car il ne s’agissait pas de mon père — mais (en ce qui concerne) les deux autres gars, ils ont reçu une claque, tu sais).

  • So it was Nick who reassured us all to not go gettin’ scared of gettin’ schmacked, ‘cause it ain’t our dad. But the other two (sons of André Péron) got themselves a ‘lil smack, ya’know.  
  • 2:54 – Pis il était pas content parce que, criffe, on l’avait laissé partir à la pêche avec un canot troué. Hahahaha!
  • And he (the dad) wasn’t happy ‘cause, cripes, we let’im go fishin’ with a canoe with a hole in it. Hahahaha!

Host

  • 2:58 – Ça fait-que, c’est la première et la dernière fois vous l’avez fait.
  • So that means, it was the first and last time you ever pulled that stunt.

Caller

  • 3:01 – Ah, oui. Hey. Il a toujours à dire les coups plats on fait, parce que des fois ça peut être encore plus angoissant et plus compliqué plus tard. 
  • Uh, yup. Hey, ya always gotta fess up to the crap you pull, because sometimes if ya don’t, it can make it a whole lot worse and complicated later on.
  • 3:06 – Pis ça amène la personne en maudit encore plus.
  • And what’s more, it makes the other person even more pissed.

Host

  • 3:08 – Hey, il y a une morale à cette histoire-là. J’aime ça.  Merci d’avoir appelé. 
  • Hey, there’s even a moral to that there story. I like it.  Thanks for callin’.

Caller

  • 3:11 – Hahaha.  Salut. Merci.
  • Hahaha.  See ya.  Thanks.

Host

  • 3:12 – Salut!  Bonne journée.
  • See ya!  Have a good day. 

———————————————————————————

After this post, I’m taking a break for a little bit!  I deserve it (I need to grow my brain cells back).  See ya sometime soon.

P.S.  —  And who said Canada doesn’t have culture !?!?!?!

—————————————————————–

SERIES:  COLLOQUIAL (SPOKEN) FRENCH – HARD-CORE LEARNING EXERCISE (6 POSTS)

“Hard-core French” learning exercise (#302)

Here’s a post which came about by accident.  Surprisingly, several people asked me to re-post the videos as a language learning exercise.

Thus I’m re-posting an “edited” (censored) version of a video which I took down soon after posting it.

Even though it was meant to be funny when I initially posted it, I had second thoughts about it, and thus took it down several hours later (you’ll understand when you see it).    I usually do not swear like this (I get visions of my mom swatting me — childhood trauma!  Oh Oh… here come the convulsions again!)

But I’m comfortable re-posting the video in a censored format — so just go with it.

Here is what happened:  

I made a last minute trip to Montréal a few days ago (a 600 kilometre drive from Toronto).  I drove there.

Half way to Montréal, I realized that I forgot my laptop charger in Toronto.  However, it was too late for me to turn around to get it.

I recorded and posted the following English video when I realized I forgot my charger.

The problem was that I needed my laptop for work in Montréal.

However, I thought that a Lenovo charger cord would be easy enough for me to find and purchase in Montréal upon arrival.

It was actually very important that I find a charger quickly because all my work information and data was in my computer, and I had no battery power left.  I could not do my work without it.

However, to my astonishment, no computer stores in Montréal carried the correct computer charger for my Lenovo laptop.

After several visits to computer shops and more than a dozen phone calls to various places, I was told that my model of Lenovo was an odd-ball for which nobody carried chargers, unless I were to order it as a special item.  (Apparently Lenovo experimented with a very strange type of new charger for several months, and then abandoned their experiment… and thus I was out of luck!).

Half frustrated, and half mocking the situation, I posted the following video.  It was meant to be funny.   But owing to the frustration involved with not being able to do my work while in Montréal, I let rip a couple of versus of poetry.

I took the following video down several hours after posting it.  I mean, who wants to “dumb-down” their blog?  Thus, sober second thought told me that perhaps I shouldn’t post such crass.

But then to my surprise… 

But then I started to receive emails from readers — one after another — asking me where the video went (Seriously people?  Really?  Well… if it helps your French, hey, why not?  I’m game!)

People across the country were telling me the video was a great way to learn hard-core street-talk French that you do not hear on television or the radio. (Again, seriously?  It was like only 2 minutes! – not even!)

I was being repeatedly asked to re-post the video with a transcript in French and English.  So I did better!  I made closed captions (Joual + Colloquial French).   Man… such talent!.

I have to admit, I was a bit surprised by the emails.   I am reposting it in response to the requests.

Here it is (with the more hard-core swear words bleeped out).

Word of warning… Don’t take the video too serious! (And don’t tell my Mom!  I’m scared of wooden spoons!!)   After all, I actually think that Lenovo is a great brand of computer, and I would recommend it to anyone.  It just so happened that I was unfortunate to have bought a somewhat “special edition” with a limited edition style of charger.

P.S.  Yes, that’s my Prairie French (rural Alberta French) accent.  It has a number of similarities with some rural Québec accents in eastern regions of Québec and parts of the North Coast.   You can find more information about Prairie French accents and others in the following posts:

P.P.S.  If you’re looking for references regarding the curse words in the video, I wrote an earlier series on the topic which you can find here:

Texto Lingo, and the debate about dedicated cycling lanes (#274)

In the last post, we looked at what I call Texto Lingo”; our special “French” SMS language.  Sometimes it is the same as European Texto Lingo, but other times it is different.   It is sort of a digital Joual.

Texto Lingo is not just restricted to SMS messages.   We routinely find it used on social media (Facebook & Twitter), as well as the comments section of news articles.

I can give you a perfect example I recently came across.

For some time now, there has been a bit of a debate in larger cities across Canada (particularly in Montréal and Toronto) as to how much leeway should be accorded to cyclists on city roads (especially downtown or on busier city roads).

One not-so-diplomatic gentleman (presumably in Montréal) obviously is frustrated at urban cyclists.  He took his frustrations out on the facebook page of the SAAQ (a comment which has since been taken down).   The SAAQ (Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec) is Québec’s state auto insurance company (the counterpart of ICBC in B.C., SGI in Saskatchewan, or MPI in Manitoba).

The SAAQ has received several such comments lately, and each time, they have responded in a very level-headed manner.   Such comments which advocate rage and violence against urban cyclists have not gone unnoticed, and they have been picked up by the satirical web-monitoring website Petit Petit Gamin.

The SAAQs SACRES

1.  Translation from Texto Lingo to colloquial (informal) French :

Tab*****, tu as beau leur laisser de la place.  Mais quand le fameux crisse de cycliste est seul, et il est en plein milieu de la rue, puis ensuite il faut que tu klaxonne pour qu’il se tasse – et en plus il t’envoie chier – … j’ai juste le goût de donner un coup de steering, puis il y aurait un de moins…  Désolé, mais tab*****, ils ont la route exclusivement à eux.  Alors utilise-la mon tab*****.  Mais viens pas me faire chier sur la route.   Shit ils ont un vélo à tas de marde!

2.  Translation from colloquial (informal) French to English :

F***!  We always have to give them space.  But when it’s just you and the bloody cyclist alone, and he’s in the middle of the street, and you have to let on the horn to get him the hell out of the way – he then tells you to screw off – … It just makes me want to swing the steering wheel, and paff… one less.   Sorry, but f***, they’ve got the road all to themselves.  So fine, take and use it!!   You ‘lil f***er!    But don’t piss all over me on the road.  Christ!  their bikes are a piece of shit!

3.  Translation of the SAAQ’s reponse from Standard French to English:

I would dare to hope that you do not truly believe what you are writing.  You would be ready to live with a death on your conscience in exchange for saving several seconds on the road and a few extra km/hr on your speed indicator?  Unless you are serious, we’re lead to believe that you don’t have the cognitive capacities to drive.

————————————————————–

Ouch!!  But I certainly commend the SAAQ’s even-keeled response.

“Commuter cycling paths” in Québec vs. Anglophone Canada

On this topic of cyclists, just this morning I was speaking with a friend who lives in a smaller community of South-Central Ontario, but who is originally from Montréal and Québec City.

There are a few people from Québec who have moved to the same small community in Ontario as my friend.  He said that all of the Québec “ex-pats” are complaining that there is a lack of an “urban cycling commuter paths” in Ontario which one can specfically use to commute downtown to work from all across the city. He contrasted this with Québec’s various cycle networks in numerous cities (large and small).

The lack of cycle paths is something my friend’s acquaintances have noticed.  Some are not happy about it, and they’re left wondering if this is a cultural difference between English and French Canada.

I’m not sure.  It left me wondering also.  I’ve been running various English Canadian cities through my mind… and I certainly can think of a bazillion highly urban cycling paths in Victoria, Vancouver, and in Ottawa to an extent.  Calgary has a good number of bike paths, but they tend to be restricted to green corridors (and not adjacent to major thoroughfares).   Edmonton, Saskatoon, Regina, Winnipeg, St. John, and Halifax have bike paths, but they generally are found in parklands (the Edmonton, Saskatoon, Winnipeg river corridors, Regina’s Wascana Park, St. John & Halifax’s waterfront).  But other than that, the rest of the country’s Anglophone cities are not the most bike friendly.

With this being said, closing city street lanes and turning them into dedicated cycle-thoroughfares has been a subject of debate in English Canada for a number of years – particularly in Toronto and Vancouver.   The debate certainly exists in English Canada, just as it did in Québec a while back.  So perhaps the cultural difference is not that large after all.  And just like in Québec, we see people in English Canada who are for it (hence the Vancouver, Victoria, & Ottawa networks), and people who are against it just like the guy in the SAAQ comments (perhaps the Montreal equivalent of Toronto’s “Ford Nation”).

There is some movement on this issue in Anglophone Canada which may see the rest of the country begin to catch up to Québec at some point in the next decade or so.  We’re seeing “shared” bike lanes and “green lanes” being painted on the roads to remind drivers to be careful when sharing lanes with cyclists.

It will be interesting to see where this debate goes in Canada – and just how much Francophone & Anglophone mentalities converge on this issue in the future (or not).  The issue has come a long ways in the past 10 years.  The next 10 years might bring even greater convergence.

Learn French & French Related Posts

Be sure to check out the LINKS PAGE for additional language-related & learning resources

————————————————————

With so many languages out there, which one(s) to learn? (#378)

Article of interest: A week in an intense immersion program in rural Quebec [Globe & Mail] (#355)

Article: The Molsons, builders of our heritage (#346) (in French)

  • An interesting article with which to practice your French reading if you’re at a basic or elementary article.  It’s just the right length as well.

Another way to practice your French – Gov’t call centres (#345)

You’re trying to learn French, you can read a bit, but it still sounds like one big garble. What to do? (#343)

  • Radio-France’s regularly “slowed-down” and “simple vocabulary” newscasts.  This is great for those who have a difficult time understanding long, drawn-out newscasts.   Check it out.  It might help you make quick progress.

Portrait of a village: Debden, SK (#340)

  • A radio-report spoken in a very clear manner which would be good for language learners.

Legendary loggers of a by-gone era – an online documentary from 1962 (#338)

  • You can use the translation of the documentary to practice your French reading and listening skills.

The Quebec Board of the French Language (#337)

  • A great online resource with
    • French and French-English dictionaries (two of the best in the world),
    • as well as an online tool on how to use French words correctly (again, one of the best such tools in the world).

The most amateur, tacky video in the world about Gatineau, Québec (#331)

  • A terrible video I made myself — but at least you’ll be able to practice your “hick” French.  Hahaha!!

SERIES:  COLLOQUIAL (SPOKEN) FRENCH – HARD-CORE LEARNING EXERCISE (6 POSTS)

————————————————————

Quiz: Accents & Eagles (#326)

————————————————————

Couple of posts for language learning:

————————————————————

“Hard-core French” learning exercise (#302)

  • Involves course language.  Not suitable for younger readers.
  • My second video-post.

300e billet / 300th post — Mon premier billet vidéo / My first video post

  • My first video-post — and for many people, their first time hearing one of Alberta’s French accents.

Texto Lingo, and the debate about dedicated cycling lanes (#274)

Texto Lingo : C-tu c kwa? (#273)

A very interesting French-language experience in Anglophone regions of Canada (#270)

————————————————————

SERIES:  “TU” VERSUS “VOUS” (2 POSTS)

————————————————————

SERIES:  QUÉBEC AND CANADIAN FRENCH SWEAR WORDS (6 POSTS)

————————————————————

UNIS (Canada’s newest French-language TV station) — Tout franco, tout beau (#225)

  • I’m including UNIS in the “Learning French” section, simply because it can give Anglophone Canadians a wide exposure to the many different French accents and styles of French spoken across Canada (a country of a real kaleidoscope of different styles of French).

A short word on Belgian French (#218)

A brief history of France’s former languages, and how they helped to shape our French in Canada (#217)

  • Contains very interesting YouTube videos of languages in France which influenced Canadian French.

Real-life documentary: “Bienvenue chez Normand” (#215)

  • An online documentary with very thick North Coast Québec accents (rare to hear).

SERIES: “REGIONAL” VOCABULARY AND EXPRESSIONS (6 POSTS)

SERIES:  FRENCH IMMERSION (4 POSTS)

Learning French – don’t be afraid to take things to the next level (#162) – Some statistics, and an encouraging example where someone tried her best, pushed her French to the limits, and made a big break-through.

Official Francophone Representation Outside Québec (#107) – A list of Francophone organizations across Canada you can turn to in your journey to learn French.

Michaëlle Jean & La Francophonie (#106) – Thoughts of the future of French in the world, why you just might want to keep at it, from an international perspective.

Our 32 Accents (7 posts)

Montréwood’s 10 hottest sitcoms and TV drama series (#77) – Entertaining programs with which to practice your French listening skills

Series:  Canadian Blingualism Trends (4 posts)

Fast way to develop an accent and ear for Canadian French (#51)

Great trick for learning French — Fast! (#50)

C’est la vie (#48) – A CBC Radio program with weekly French vocabulary capsules.

Joual, Informal French – An Audio Post with Examples (#23)

  • This post tackles aspects of Canadian & Québec French which learners say they have the most difficulty with (the informal aspect of our “oral” French).   The post is a little long, but I felt I needed to cover all the bases.  I even threw in an audio component with examples of International French, versus Joual/Informal French.  I ventured to the edge of my own comfort zone to make this one, considering that I made the audio segment myself (yikes!).