Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Idiomatically yours

Considering the following French idioms and their significantly different English counterparts, it's no surprise that I occasionally get a little lost in conversations with my neighbors and friends here in France. But the fun part is finding the idiom's equivalent in your own language.

For example, my sister-in-law in Spain just had a baby. They were trying to decide who the handsome little guy resembled when an English-speaker made a joke about the mailman. But the Spaniards quickly pointed out that they would have said he resembled the plumber. Interesting, isnt it?

Here are some examples I've come across recently in France.

The French say: Elle a trouvé l'oiseau rare.
It means: She found the rare bird.
I say: She found Mr. Right.

The French say: Mon petit doigt me l'a dit.
It means: My pinky told me.
I say: A little bird told me.

The French say: Ils se ressemblent comme deux gouttes d'eau.
It means: They’re like two drops of water.
I say: They're like two peas in a pod.

The French say: Il est haut comme trois pommes.
It means: He's as tall as three apples.
I say: He's knee-high to a grasshopper.

The French say: Il faut toujours qu'il ramène ses fraises.
It means: He always has to bring his strawberries back.
I say: He always has to put his two cents in.

The French say: J'y perds mon latin.
It means: I lose my Latin there.
I say: I can't make heads or tails of it.

What do you say?

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