petite anglaise

February 1, 2005

caramel shoe shoe

Filed under: Uncategorized — petiteanglaiseparis @ 12:18 pm
on a one way ticket to my thighs

If there’s one thing that really makes me cringe, it is feeling obliged to pronounce English words with a French accent in order to make myself understood. I’ve been doing it with my surname for about nine years now. It never ceases to feel silly. It’s yet another reason why I’d quite like Mr Frog to pop the question someday in the not too distant future. (But not on Valentine’s day, obviously, because that would be nauseating.)

Last night, bad non-wife that I am, I sent out for pizza. When I got to the obligatory, non-negotiable dessert part of the order, I spied a range of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. And I was faced with a dilemma. How does one pronounce ‘Chunky Monkey’ in French? Or ‘Caramel Chew Chew’ for that matter? I’m guessing the latter would involve a ‘shoe shoe’ because the ‘tch’ sound doesn’t exist in the French language. I opted for 500 ml of ‘shunkay monkay’ in the end, cringing all the while, and sounding like Michelle from the British comedy Allô Allô.

I don’t patronise McDonalds very often, for precisely the same reason. I have been known to get Mr Frog to do my dirty work when a junk food fix is The Only Thing That Will Do. I challenge you to try and look someone in the eye and ask for ‘un ambourgeur’ or ‘un sheezbourgeur’ without blushing or smirking. But trust me, if you pronounce your order the English/American way, you are likely to end up having to repeat yourself, and you will inevitably end up Frenchifying it in the end, out of sheer desperation.

When I did my time as an English Lectrice at the Sorbonne Nouvelle, I remember finding it nigh on impossible to understand my students’ English when they tried to tell me about their favourite non-French pop star, or actor. The names of famous people, known the world over, get the French treatment to the point where they are completely unrecognisable. Meet Broooz Weeleez (possible anatomical abnormality?) and Tom Aunks (my least favourite actor and the person guaranteed, in my opinion, to make the screen adaptation of the Da Vinci Code truly unwatchable).

The French seem to be blissfully unaware of the fact that that their pronunciation of a person’s name or film title can actually change the meaning altogether. My favourite example of this is the computer game/film ‘Tomb Raider’. Oddly, this title has not been translated, as is often the case. Instead, the official French pronunciation is ‘Tomb Rider. I can never hear that without picturing Angelina Jolie surfing on a headstone in her slinky little outfit, pouting all the while with those luscious lips of hers. A nice image, but haven’t the French missed the point slightly?

Edit: there was a film title on the tip of my tongue all day and I’ve just remembered it. Speeederman. Sounds like he should be wearing speedos, non?


  1. Don’t you find that it’s easier to frenchify the pronunciation of English words? We must use a different set of muscles entirely for both languages, because if I try and say a French word in its original version in an English sentence, I find my mouth takes a while to respond to my brain, I lose some control over my jaw and also I can’t help but pout, which is all a bit disconcerting. So these days I just ask for a klwassan, much safer.

    Comment by céline — February 1, 2005 @ 12:39 pm

  2. Céline – I know what you mean about getting your tongue all twisted if changing language in mid-sentence. A pause is definitely required to change from English mouth to French mouth. But the cringe factor. How can you not care about the cringe factor?!

    Comment by petite — February 1, 2005 @ 12:44 pm

  3. One day I went to an Far West sytle restaurant in France. I fancied onion rings for starters. The waitress was unable to understand my order (And I’m French!). So I showed it on the menu.
    “Ha! Vous voulez des oignons rrrrings! Mais il faut prononcer correctement!”
    I didn’t know what to say at the time.

    Comment by Chninkel — February 1, 2005 @ 12:46 pm

  4. do you know this cult-dialogue (for french people), from the film ‘La cité de la peur’?
    sums up quite wel the dilemma of french people when they have to pronounce english words in a conversation in french…
    “Je crois que nous avons affaire à un ‘serial killer*’!
    – un quoi?
    – un ‘serial killer*’!
    – un quoi?
    Рun s̩rriale killeure, un tueur en s̩rie quoi!
    – aaah, un ‘serial killer*'”

    * quite well imitated american accent.

    Comment by saar — February 1, 2005 @ 1:03 pm

  5. I feel your pain! When David worked at Lucent, he would purposely speak french with a much stronger french accent than he actually has, because he didn’t want to be the showoff with his snooty english. And when McDo did those chicken strips (rather than nuggets) awhile back, he would tell the lady my order of “sheekeen cuntree” (and I would do my best not to giggle outloud).

    Although I admit, I do the same thing. Just the other day, when playing a cinema dvd-quiz game with some friends, they asked me about “speeder” and I replied that in “speeder”, the actor was indeed Ralph Fiennes.

    As far as switching, I have a really rough time too. David is “Dahveed” when speaking to someone in french, “Dayvid” when speaking in english. I used to try to do it Dahveed both ways, but alas, each time I will finish my sentence in French, leaving an anglophone recipient might confused.

    Comment by kim — February 1, 2005 @ 1:03 pm

  6. err, he would speak english* with a french accent.

    sometimes I think the english part of my brain is totally slacking off.

    Comment by kim — February 1, 2005 @ 1:05 pm

  7. “If there’s one thing that really makes me cringe, it is feeling obliged to pronounce English words with a French accent in order to make myself understood. I’ve been doing it with my surname for about nine years now.”

    What about fabrice with an English accent ?
    It has been 4 years now.
    Keep on learning !

    Comment by fabrice — February 1, 2005 @ 1:32 pm

  8. At MacDo my children always want “po-tay-TOZ” instead of frites. And when I order a “MacFleurrrrrreeeee” for dessert, well I feel like a cat coughing up a furball.

    Comment by Antipo Déesse — February 1, 2005 @ 1:58 pm

  9. Imagine my excitement last year when the TV quiz show “Questions Pour Un Champion” featured a special edition with all four contestants from la Nouvelle-Zélande! One poor woman (coincidentally a teacher from my old secondary school!), spoke perfectly good French but got a very low score quite simply because she couldn’t understand the host when he used English names. Many of the questions involved English film & book titles and actors’ names and Julien Lepers’ pronunciation of “A Rrrrooum Weez A Veeyooo” and “Chreeesteeene Scote-Thomarse” rendered them unrecognisable.

    I’m sure the organisers deliberately chose questions from Anglo-American culture, but sadly she would have understood better if they had stuck to a French theme only.

    Don’t you love it when Anglophones have trouble pronouncing the French vowels “ou” and “u” correctly? My old friend Cathy would always say she was putting on her chicken (“poule”) instead of her sweater (“pull”). I once, when very young (or tired or something), thought I had wished my dinner guests a safe drive home (“Bonne route”) upon their departure, but actually said “Bon rut”! (allow me some poetic licence in translating that as: “I say old chaps, have a rutting good time!”).:oops:

    Comment by Antipo Déesse — February 1, 2005 @ 2:13 pm

  10. I feel like an American trying to impersonate the French if I try to say English words with a fake French accent. I never do it unless the person I’m speaking to has a really hard time understanding me.
    Once when I was buying Harry Potter movie tickets the girl behind the counter told me it was refreshing to finally hear Harry Potter pronounced correctly.
    Oh, and the kids at McDo love it too. They get all excited when I come in and order with my American accent.

    Comment by Anna — February 1, 2005 @ 2:33 pm

  11. Yooo av don eet agennne – eet ze nelleuh onne zer eddeuh. I too get people pulling a ‘Ooooh-là , c’est pô de chez nous ça!’ type face when I pronounce my name properly. It really makes me sick to cave in and say it their way. Darling Froggette thinks I’m just being plain awkward, de mauvaise foi even, when I genuinely don’t recognise this US actor she’s raving on about in a film whose VF title bears no resemblence to the original. And it was only when I ordered shikken suprême et deux appymills at McDonald’s that my daughter’s French friend accused me of having an accent in French.
    Don’t know if you’ve noticed though, the linguistically no concessions Québecois have no difficulty in pronouncing American names à l’américaine, even in the midst of a flow of French. When they’re speaking French, it’s French. The Happy Meal thing doesn’t even crop up there because it’s legally forbidden. They call it un Festin Joyeux.

    Comment by Parkin Pig — February 1, 2005 @ 2:43 pm

  12. As a follow up to Antipo’s comment, a friend of mine once attended a chic soirée and, when asked how she was, replied, rubbing her neck, “Ça va, mais j’ai un peu mal au cul”.

    Petite, when did you teach at Paris III? I taught linguistics and translation there, 1994-97. Hope we don’t blow each other’s cover…

    Comment by Ria — February 1, 2005 @ 2:43 pm

  13. It *is* tough to go from one to the other in mid-sentence. When I slip into ‘English pronunciation mode’ halfway through a phrase, people sometimes get confused, so I tend to chicken out and Frenchify the thing. Unless, of course, I’m speaking to someone about one of my favourite CDs, say “The Wild, The Innocent and The E-Street Shuffle” by Bruce Springsteen & The E-Street Band – try *that* one with an “Âllo Âllo” accent ;-)

    Comment by Iain — February 1, 2005 @ 2:46 pm

  14. MacDonald’s? You are the last person in the world to get that wrong! Doh! McDoh!

    Comment by nardac — February 1, 2005 @ 3:04 pm

  15. I hate Tom Aunks too.

    My last name starts McN… which is pretty normal in the US but unheard of in France. Even when I spell out ess-ah-err-ah-ahsh-em-sé-enn-eee-deux-tés I have gotten many creative spellings and looks of “But… you can’t have that many consonants in a row. It’s… not right.”

    Comment by srah — February 1, 2005 @ 3:12 pm

  16. Once, my extended family asked me who my favorite actors are, and I offered up Kevin Kline. My belle soeur was very confused, as she couldn’t understand why I’d chosen a fashion designer. *sigh*

    Comment by ViVi — February 1, 2005 @ 3:22 pm

  17. Oops Nardac, must be the influence of the French calling it MacDo. Duly corrected. I’m sorry I’m all over the place making offers on flats, plotting to take my hairdryer back to the computer shop tomorrow…

    *counting on fingers*
    Ria – I taught at Censier as a lectrice d’anglais in 95/96 and 96/97. Did conversation classes, linguistics for first years etc. Ooh do we know each other? Email me :

    Comment by petite — February 1, 2005 @ 3:52 pm

  18. Many years ago on a visit to Paris, I approached the first in a long line of cabs at a taxi rank. The driver looked up from his newspaper just long enough to scoff at my destination. I should ask the driver at the very end of the queue to take me the pifflingly short distance. Miffed and schlepping my bags down to the end of the line, I innocently explained “Votre collegue à la tête de k-e-w (meaning queue but sounding like cul) de m’amener aux Invalides”. Roaring with laughter he took my bags, told me to get in and never stopped repeating ‘tête de cul’ all the way out to the airport.

    Comment by Parkin Pig — February 1, 2005 @ 3:54 pm

  19. When I was in high school my family had a French foreign exchange student stay with us for a summer. He was from the south of France. I asked him, “Have you ever been to Paris?” He had no idea what I was talking about. It took a good ten minutes with me finally pronouncing Paris as “Paree” before he understood. And no, he had never been.

    Comment by pismire — February 1, 2005 @ 4:15 pm

  20. *curses self for not doing CTRL-C before submitting message*

    *tries to remember content of quite long comment*

    Okay, here goes:
    Petite – I hear you!

    For someone whose surname contains the letters “w” and “th”, I don’t even bother trying to say my name either in a French or English style, I just spell it out or write it down. Saves a lot of time and heartache…

    Film names: I went to see “Menace II Society” whilst in France – I had no idea how to render the “II” in French. Luckily, my French ex did the honours…

    Frenchification: an example of the other side of this coin was a lesson with our French assistant in sixth form college. She was talking about the actor Christophe Lambert, in French. I suddenly realised who she meant, and blurted out “Oh, Christopher Laaaambert” in my best Cockney accent…

    My ex used to scold me for saying “Oh, [English word]!” after trying unsuccessfully to understand a French person attempting to name a British/American actor. He thought I was doing it on purpose, but I genuinely didn’t know what they were talking about, so bad was their pronunciation!

    Petite – when you first went to France, did everyone always ask you about Jane Birkin? (Obviously, pronounced in the French way). I got fed up of hearing her name…

    Comment by witho — February 1, 2005 @ 4:53 pm

  21. Oh Petite, This posting is just too funny. However, today you exceed yourself–I can’t stand Tom Aunks either. The rest of the world seems to love him, apparently we are just about the only ones who’ve noticed what a big cheese ball he is. Bless you my child.

    Comment by Annika — February 1, 2005 @ 4:53 pm

  22. Dear Petite – I too hate Tom Aunks! Just seeing his big fat face makes me so tired I have to lie down and call for a vitamin b-12 injection. But there are American movie stars who’ve had an even more pernicious influence in France. A friend of mine who participated in a Canada-France student exchange as a teenager visited France recently and stayed with his old exchange partner, who is now married and has a son. Paul had some difficulty with the boy’s name. “Quai-vain! Quai-vain,” his host repeated. It turned out the man had named his son after Kevin Costner. Yuck.

    Comment by Louis — February 1, 2005 @ 6:02 pm

  23. I tend to order a “Royale Cheese” when wearing my Sunday Dad hat in McDo. At least I can kid myself it lends me a little Samuel L. Jackson credibility. I once asked for a McBacon at the Liverpool Street Station McDonalds in London, only to be told they don’t exist in UK. >Blam< Head explodes again. I remember an earnest discussion with my host family on my 1982 stay in Dugny about the fantastic reggae offered by "Oobay Quarante". Only many days later did the penny drop. I also once knew an English bloke with a holiday home here. He confided that he couldn't understand why everyone sniggered at him when he gave his name. Step forward Mr Sleep.

    For what it's worth I'm sure this cuts both ways, and equally sure our Frenchisms that creep into our English must be amusing to French and English alike.

    By the way, I'm livid and trembling with indignation and rage. I've just been flashed AGAIN by a speed camera, doing 55 Km/h in town, and while being beeped and flashed from behind by impatient drivers for going too SLOWLY. Aaaargh.

    Comment by Jim in Rennes — February 1, 2005 @ 6:17 pm

  24. I’m French…from Québec. My family name starts with “Tu…” (from my French ancesters)and is prononced “Tsu…” here but over in France I have to spell it all the time.

    Worse: often French people(from France) opt to speak to me in their weezee English because it’s easier for them to understand me when I speak English (like an american). But I sometimes have to revert to their “In-gleesh” to get through to them. Funny thing is, we have no problem understanding what they’re saying if they speak English, French or “In-gleesh”.

    Come live here for a while and speak the way you want… that’ll be a real vacation!

    Comment by Rob — February 1, 2005 @ 6:36 pm

  25. In Italy they call it Tom Rider. It’s particularly irritating when some little kid has been given an English name that’s said in the Italian way and she corrects the way you say it.

    Comment by Apple Blown Fairy — February 1, 2005 @ 7:26 pm

  26. When I was assistanting in France, I had no idea how to pronounce the name Michaël (or wherever the accent goes)… it looks like Michael but sounds more like Mikhail.

    I also had a student named Marie-Line… I wondered where the name “Line” came from and it took me almost the whole semester to realize that Marie-Line was the French spelling of the French pronunciation of Marilyn… which is my mom’s name.

    Comment by srah — February 1, 2005 @ 8:04 pm

  27. Don’t understand all this hatred for Tom Aunks. He was every bit as good as Jooooode Lô in Chemins vers Perdition. But then again, I can’t stand Claude François, can I? Another of those eternal mysteries.

    Comment by Parkin Pig — February 1, 2005 @ 8:16 pm

  28. Always funny to heard french words with English or even US accents.

    Anyway, the point I wanted to do is that I noticed a big different when I was in Québec, to teach a week last year. We, frenchy always laugh when we listen Québecois and their accents… and I realised that they can laugh more than they heard us french using English words. Its particularly true when we came to taught them how to use a software who is full of English words.

    A Québecois have “right” English accent, and invent always charming words when he doesn’t like English ones.

    A French have “bad” French accent, and never invent nice french version of English words, he prefer to be upset with invented words by some governments commission.

    Comment by Jean F Porchez — February 1, 2005 @ 11:08 pm

  29. I always had a soft spot for the reggae of “Oobay Quarante”.

    Comment by Jim in Rennes — February 2, 2005 @ 12:52 am

  30. Apparently the same phenomenon can occur between people speaking the same language.

    When I was in the US I was unable to get anyone to understand my Australian english (‘strine). I like to think that I speak english in a vaguely intelligible fashion but if I asked for anything there was always touble. Most notably when I asked for a coke and was brought a bowl of chips.

    So I, like you, had to ask for things in the local accent. Try to do *that* without bursting into laughter.

    Comment by BHR — February 2, 2005 @ 1:39 am

  31. :wink:

    Do I ever understand you. I live in Quebec, the only non-english province in Canada and it cracks me up to listen to their frenglish words.

    Comment by Nyahblue — February 2, 2005 @ 4:50 am

  32. Why am I living in this comment box like it’s a forum? I think I have too much experience with being misunderstood AND going to McDonalds. :oops::cry: I visited a McDo in Aberdeen once and went to the counter to ask for some ketchup. I repeated myself three times and the counter staff couldn’t understand what I was asking for. I was surprised because I expected not to understand the Scots all the time, but I’m Midwestern American! I talk like the movies! I wasn’t about to make a fool of myself trying to ask for ketchup in a fake Scottish accent, so I tried for fake English instead and threw in an extra Englishy-pronounced word while I was at it. Ahsking foar “tomahto ketchup” worked a lot better, somehow.

    Comment by srah — February 2, 2005 @ 7:03 am

  33. srah – you can hang out in the box as long as you like – shall I put the kettle on? Anyone else for a cuppa?

    Comment by petite — February 2, 2005 @ 1:05 pm

  34. hysterical!

    we have the same problem here, of course, and it’s maddening. if my girls hear an english name or word for the first time in its portuguese way, it seems to stick… so we have ickshunmin for action man (don’t ask!), baaaaaaaRRRRRRRRRRRbi for Barbie (not a WORD, pa!). ANd I resent having to ask for a keetkett or sneakers when I want choookelatt. I shall have to do a post on my waybsaaaaiiite about it one of these days.

    Comment by vitriolica — February 2, 2005 @ 1:20 pm

  35. This is just so true.. but here’s a little tip – the old arrogant ‘speak loud and they’ll understand you’ advice is not so daft as it seems. The first time I went to Paris about 10 years ago, we went in a burger-bar, not McDo’s, but whatever chain chooses to call their filet-o-fish “un ocean catch”. (My French was pretty ropey at this point and I had no idea you had to pronounce English words in a French accent.) So I offered a pathetic: Zhe voodray urn Ocean Catch, merci. After three attempts the server did not understand, and my Friend (who couldn’t speak a word of French) said “no! you just speak louder in English, but with a froggy accent!” (Now, please understand that he actually said this in *jest*, I think he wanted to speak Allo Allo just to wind the server up even more. ) so he addressed the server (much louder than I had:) “oui weuhd laik uh large oosheean catch pleez.” The server’s reply? “oosheean.. ooshean.. Ah! océan catch! oui monsieur, tout de suite!”

    Comment by nick — February 2, 2005 @ 1:33 pm

  36. They actually do it deliberately. I’ve always supected it but caught someone red-handed recently.
    She was laughing at the name of singer Faith Hill and I couldn’t understand why. She kept prodding me to discover for myself the massive joke of her first name (and also her two names combined, but I digress. Eventually she had to pointedly explain that it was prnounced “fesse” (buttock).
    – But there’s no “S” ?
    – But the TH, for a français, makes is “fesse”
    – Why? When you have TH in French it’s pronounced “T” as in “théâtre” or “thé” or “aneth”.
    – But it’s an English word
    – yyyyess, that’s why it’s pronounced with a THHH
    – but in France we don’t make the difference between zis sound and a S
    – but you have a verb “zozoter” (to lisp)
    – hein? et alors?
    – what does it mean?
    – someone who talk like zis (proceeds to lisp)
    – so it’s considered a speech defect if you’re able to pronounce English words then?
    – pffff, o la la, these anglo-saxons!

    I love the way they try not to offend the Irish/Americans by referring to us as a tribe of 5th century barbarians.

    Comment by reachy — February 2, 2005 @ 4:36 pm

  37. I worked with someone once who thought he’d be particularly clever by trying very hard to give this film title the correct French pronounciation: “Four-zchay Pareee”. Unfortunately it was English: “Forget Paris”.

    Comment by David — February 2, 2005 @ 5:57 pm

  38. this is the phonetic memo News readers here at TVNZ have received in order to pronounce foreign words correctly – try to guess, I’ll post the answers later!

    1-PER zhoh
    2-on truh pruh NER
    3-VOR duh vil
    4-soh vee NYAW BLO
    5-nyoo MAIR
    6-kwo FER
    7-low ZAN
    8-kart blarnch
    9-deb yoo tont
    10-too uh duf fros
    11-vuh LOO uh
    12-res tuh ruh TER
    13-nyoo zee luhnd
    14-LA zhu ree
    15-fayt uh kom PLEE
    16-shonz ay lee ZAY
    17-AM uh tuh
    18-book AY
    19-SHAR zhay duh FAIR
    20-mari hwar nuh
    21- zho KRET ya

    Me too Petite, I haven’t got used to the way they pronounce my last name in English. It sounds so stupid! And I’ve got a French freind here named Luce, and they pronounce her name Loose. Nice hey?

    Comment by Maurine au bout du monde — February 3, 2005 @ 1:24 am

  39. What the heck is #5?

    Comment by srah — February 3, 2005 @ 1:38 am

  40. Noumea (as in New Caledonia, our closest neighbours)
    Did you get the other ones? I particularly love 10 and 19 :lol:

    Comment by Maurine au bout du monde — February 3, 2005 @ 3:14 am

  41. I am laughing too hard to type. At the post AND the comments.

    Even though I was a French major, I was reminded of one of my Spanish professors, who had such a heavy Spanish accent that the only reason I could tell when he switched from Spanish to English in class was that I suddenly couln’t follow anything he was saying.

    I had another instructor who taught French but who was actually Portugese. She used to tell of visiting Spain but not speaking a word of the language. She & her friends got by by speaking Portugese with a heavy Spanish accent.

    Comment by Bluegrass Mama — February 3, 2005 @ 3:42 am

  42. :lol: I’m English, living in America, and I feel silly enough having to pronounce things with an American accent to be understood. (The letter ‘R’, ‘half’, ‘due’) Sounds like I have it easy though – I’m very glad I don’t have to do a French accent.

    Comment by Jennie — February 3, 2005 @ 3:54 am

  43. maurine please put me out of my misery, I sound really silly reading these out loud in the open plan office!

    Love #10, am completely stumped by #19

    Comment by petite — February 3, 2005 @ 9:55 am

  44. Maurine. That’s a killer. You have got to help us out here! I think part of the problem is coming at it in a sort of franglais way…

    Anyway, on a slightly different note, Petite touched on film titles being rubbish bbecause of their pronounciation. I give you “Mon beau-pere, mes parents et moi”. The not-so-catchy French title for “Meet the Fockers” How did that happen?

    Comment by Jim in Rennes — February 3, 2005 @ 8:48 pm

  45. 1-PER zhoh Peugeot???
    2-on truh pruh NER entrepreneur
    3-VOR duh vil vaudeville
    4-soh vee NYAW BLO Sauvignon blanc???
    5-nyoo MAIR Noumea
    6-kwo FER coiffeur
    7-low ZAN Lausanne
    8-kart blarnch carte blanche
    9-deb yoo tont débutante
    10-too uh duf fros Tour de France
    11-vuh LOO uh velour?
    12-res tuh ruh TER restaurateur
    13-nyoo zee luhnd New Zealand ??? really?
    14-LA zhu ree lingerie
    15-fayt uh kom PLEE fait accompli
    16-shonz ay lee ZAY Champs Elysées
    17-AM uh tuh amateur
    18-book AY bouquet
    19-SHAR zhay duh FAIR chargé d’affaires
    20-mari hwar nuh marijuana
    21- zho KRET ya ???????

    Comment by petite — February 3, 2005 @ 10:15 pm

  46. Hilarious game, thanks Maurine! I think being French puts me at a disadvantage, but I can always try.
    21- secrétaire ?

    Comment by ontario frog — February 4, 2005 @ 3:54 am

  47. Petite you are so clever!
    The last one is actually Jean Chretien (former Quebec Prime Minister or something close). But secretaire wasn’t bad :lol: :lol: :lol:

    I love the Tour de France and Charge d’affaire. So good!

    Comment by Maurine au bout du monde — February 4, 2005 @ 5:56 am

  48. Hi Petite
    Excellent topic today ! My english surname when pronounced by some French is hilarious… but I always make a point of saying it properly a few times then sigh heavily and say it the French way or spell it. For all the fast-food crappy names problems I have a solution – don’t go their to “eet zis meuk !”
    Also I hate Tom Aunks too… actually maybe everyone hates him but never owed to.
    And what about poor little French kids called “Kévin Dupont” or “Samantha Pottier”…

    Comment by Froog — February 4, 2005 @ 11:28 am

  49. I meant “don’t go there” indeed…:oops:


    Comment by Froog — February 4, 2005 @ 11:30 am

  50. This doesn’t just go for speaking either, the French love to change people’s names too. I saw an ad for Ralph Laurents recently and also an article about Georges Cloony.
    It’s infuriating!
    I like to think that English speakers try hard to say French words and names with the French accent, the way the French say them. I just don’t understand why the French have to change names and pronounciations and can’t make the same effort??

    Comment by Anna — February 5, 2005 @ 6:19 pm

  51. Ooops. I meant Georges Clooney.

    Comment by Anna — February 5, 2005 @ 6:20 pm

  52. The worst thing to order in a French McDonald’s is Chicken McNuggets… although it’s even worse in Germany. Mit Barbeque Söse.

    The funniest thing I’ve encountered in a Parisian McDo was at Les Halles – an American woman was struggling to get her order for a “Big Mac with Potato Wedges and Diet Coke Without Ice” understood. I stepped in and interpreted for her – the American woman commented on how perfect my English accent was, while the poor McDo girl said that my French was very good…

    Comment by dafyd — February 7, 2005 @ 5:38 pm

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