I am 24-year-old Frenchman currently living in Slovakia, but I spent almost all my life in France. I am passionate about languages, language learning and linguistics (even though I studied computer engineering), and I would like to help people who are learning my language.
One of the difficulties of the French language is the wide gap between the official language and the actual spoken language. Language lessons in schools usually focus more on the formal language, so people who learn French as a second language are surprised when they go to France: what they hear doesn’t really correspond to what they have learned. Some words are shortened, the grammar is a little different and French people use many words that are usually not taught in courses.
There is nothing wrong about formal French; indeed, its knowledge is necessary if you want to read almost anything except maybe on-line discussions. However, slang and colloquial expressions are also important parts of a language and you can hardly speak fluently if you are not familiar with them. The aim of this blog is therefore to teach slang words and colloquial French to people who already have some knowledge of French and would like to improve it. I will choose words that are actually used by French people, explain them and illustrate them with example. Because I am from France, I will focus on French as it is spoken in my country; most expressions will probably be understood in the French-speaking parts of Switzerland and Belgium, but French Canadians have many slang words that are not used in France and conversely.
Warning about the content
Some of the words and expressions I explain in this blog may be vulgar. My goal is not to teach bad words just for the sake of it, but swear words are an important part of living languages too. However, you should be careful when using slang and curses in a foreign language: using the wrong word in the wrong situation can make you sound rude or you can shock people. You can learn such words in order to understand them, but I recommend against using vulgar words unless you have a good level in the language and you know precisely what effect they will have.