Mini-Quiz: “La Rentrée” Review

We already had the quiz, but now I want to pick it apart. There were plenty of vocabulary words and phrases I used that I haven’t covered yet (or perhaps don’t remember covering), so I’ll go over them now. There’s a good chance I’ll cover them again in a later lesson, but there’s nothing wrong with being thorough.

  • “J’ai commencé à parler le français il y a treize ans.”
    • If any of you ignored my warning and put this through Google Translate anyway, this part would’ve been incorrectly translated. It literally says “there are thirteen years”, but it is an expression that means “____ years ago”. You can use it at the beginning of your sentence, followed by a comma, or you can add it to the end of your sentence, as shown above.
  • “Je veux devenir ingénieure logiciel
    • This is another phrase that generates an incorrect translation on Google Translate (thus the reason I recommended you not use it). Again, a literal translation is “I want to become software engineer”, which sounds kind of off in English. But in French, when you’re talking about your profession, you don’t say “a” with it. So, in French, you don’t say “Je suis un docteur”, you say “Je suis docteur”. Just think of it this way: In French, you’re not part of your profession, you are your profession.
  • “Evidemment je parle encore le français.”
    • Pretty much everyone knows “encore” means “again”. But the word is actually pretty versatile. In this context, it means “still” (though in retrospect, I think I could’ve tweaked the sentence and find a way to use the word “toujours” instead). You can also use the word “encore” to say “yet” (as in “not yet”).
  • “…je ne prends aucun cours…”
    • “I don’t take any courses”. If you use the “ne…aucun” formula, you cannot say “ne … pas aucun”. This is a double negative.
  • “…je ferais la grasse matinée chaque jour…”
    • “Faire la grasse matinée”: “To sleep in”. Literally, you’re “having a fat morning”.
  • “Peut-être jusqu’à 2h ou 3h dans l’aprem
    • “jusqu’à”: “until”
    • “l’aprem”: shortened form of “l’aprés-midi”, meaning “the afternoon”
  • “…vous avez le même problème de temps en temps.”
    • From time to time

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