On Tue, May 12, 2009 at 3:19 PM, Rick DeNatale firstname.lastname@example.org
vouloir in French, I don’t know that je veut, or je voudrais is more
impolite than say j’aimerais and I’d think that the average native
English speaker would consider both I want, or I would like to be
socially acceptable expressions of a desire for something.
Let us see, you just enter the boulangerie and are in front of a very
charming lady half your age, I really cannot imagine someone saying
“je veux”, this is really inaceptable and I have never heard it.
“Je voudrais” is fine of course, “je souhaiterais” is very beautiful.
I was very shocked by “I want”, but I am notoriously sensible (c.f.
Lazy Bastard thread).
And this is the real reason I am so picky with your French here, you
did not support me in that thread, any excuses ;)))
Seriously, it is very important to know for Rubiests how to get des
croissants, pains aux chocolat, brioches ou encore des chaussons
pommes… when in France ou au Québec (ou avez-vous d’autres
I guess I should start preparing dinner…
If we are talking about faux amis, one of the tricky French-English
ones is demander, which translates properly in English to “to ask”
whereas do demand in English means something more like exiger in
French, and would probably be perceived as a step up the rudeness
Well as we are already OT here, I prefer true enemies aux faux amis ;).
Demander is very strong indeed, it is the police who “demande les
personnes de sortir”. But always consider the context
“Pourrais-je vous demander un service, Madame.”
Very polite indeed.
Si tu veux construire un bateau …
Ne rassemble pas des hommes pour aller chercher du bois, préparer des
outils, répartir les tâches, alléger le travail… mais enseigne aux
gens la nostalgie de l’infini de la mer.
If you want to build a ship, don’t herd people together to collect
wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to
long for the endless immensity of the sea.