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Thread: Garçon = waiter?

  1. #1

    Garçon = waiter?

    Greetings

    I am studying french a bit.

    Is garçon the word for waiter?

    Is that insulting at all?

    Boy can be taken as an insult especially in mixed company in the USA.

  2. #2
    Agent Smith - Mr Anderson ZoneAlarm's Avatar
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    i usually get their attention and say exuser moi or exuse me. But yes garcon means waiter. And if its insulting well i would not say it but im not really sure never been a waiter. lol

  3. #3
    Be careful about common language translations in France vs Quebec as well.

    Your sons/daugthers = Tes gosses (in France)

    But in Quebec,

    Tes gosses = Your testicles

    I'm sure there are other funny ones like that.

    Une belle femme est celle qu'on remarque... Une femme charmante est celle par qui on est remarqué...

  4. #4
    these 2 example are in french....

    turlute au quebec means somekind of 30's floklorique mucic

    as for turlute in France it means a BJ

  5. #5
    Agent Smith - Mr Anderson ZoneAlarm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxima
    Calling a restaurant worker "garçon" is sexist. I just raise my hand and say "excusez moi".
    yea i do the same. What i hate the most is when i see someone lift up their glass and do that look like get ur ass over here. Pretty disrespectful.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxima
    Calling a restaurant worker "garçon" is sexist.
    Especially when its a woman

  7. #7
    Non, rien de rien...
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    Equally acceptable would be to say: "S'il vous plait" while raising your hand.
    jackyo

  8. #8
    They ignore you no matter what... so I yell out garcon... even if its a topless waitress at Chez Paree...

  9. #9
    I would not use any French word because the waiter will reply in French and you will not have any clue what he said. I am trying to learn French to understand a conversation and use it only in case of emergency. I would never use French unless I am 80% competent in it (speaking and listening).

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Big Daddy
    I would never use French unless I am 80% competent in it (speaking and listening).
    How do you expect to learn?

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by lovin spoonful
    How do you expect to learn?

    Read the books, learn the grammer and then practice it with the SPs. Also, try reading the French posts and see if you can understand them. Next, watch English movie DVDs in French language and leave the French titles on. French accents are different. If you understand French written work then that does not mean you can listen French and understand it.

    Once you get to that level then you have enough working knowledge to attempt to converse with someone in French.

    I would try to converse in French only with people who know that I am learning. I am reluctant to try that on a stranger. But this is just me and my strategy. Others may have different approaches. My current competence level in French is about 20%. I takes time to learn the language. Committement wise, I am not that committed.

  12. #12
    I am me, too!
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovin spoonful
    How do you expect to learn?
    That's just the point! Wanting such perfection and telling others about it makes them sound willing and open, striving for excellence while, in reality, they have no intention whatsoever to use French.

    In case of emergency... That doesn't hold water! Want to make a fool of yourself in an emergency situation and likely make it worst, or would you rather sound funny when ordering a coffee? Theory is good, in theory. Practice is what makes fluent. After grade 12 English (very basic!) I got my first job, in English with nobody speaking a word of French. I did look weird for about 6 month but was always able to communicate properly, no matter if all my verbs were conjugated in present tense and my accent was huge. Some morons laughed at me, true, but I always had the last laugh because I was bilingual and they weren't.

    Sorry but I've seen to many of these perfectionnists.

  13. #13
    Thank you. Im reading a book on the language and supposedly the french people are very understanding of new speakers, hope that is the case with the french canadians.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Big Daddy
    Read the books, learn the grammer and then practice it with the SPs.
    I'd honestly be impressed by anyone who could become 80% fluent (spoken) in any language using your strategy.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by lovin spoonful
    I'd honestly be impressed by anyone who could become 80% fluent (spoken) in any language using your strategy.
    Trust me it works for me. Neither English nor French is my native language. I speak five languages. I am was an immigrant to the US, so yes it works, and it works for me. There are phases that one goes through when one learns a new language. The first phase is learning the vocabulary. The second phase is learning the basic grammer. The first two phases are critical. After that you have to improve your listening capabilities so that you can recognize the words and understand them. Often you will hear a word in French and then you know that you heard it but don't know what it means. You will have to revisit your reference book etc. to know what it means.

    Based on my experience, you MUST understand what people are saying before you can get the speaking fluency.

    My experience is that multi-lingual skills work when you deal with people who have multi-lingual skills because they are much more understanding. When conversing with as SP, if she has trouble with a English word then she can replace it with a French word and it gives me a pleasure to recognize the French word. If you only know English then you will have to improve both French written and listening capabilities before you start speaking French with others. A sentence such as "Il fait chaud," you may recognize when it is written, but you will have a had time recognizing when it is spoken.

    If you don't live in France or Montreal then the best you can expect is to obtain 60-65% understanding of French language (at least this is what my guesstimate is). There are slangs and other cultural phrases that you can only master over time if you live in a particular area. Some of these slangs may be location specific as some post on this thread mention.

    Learning a new language is fun and requires some committment. As long as you have some committment, you will learn a few words. When you hear and recognize these words, your committment level with increase. Recognizing oral and written words and sentences provides encouragement to learn more.
    Last edited by Big Daddy; 07-17-2007 at 11:40 AM.

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