French in Paris..advice needed!

May 27th, 2007, 06:35 PM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,725
"a parisene is the loutish inhabitant of the city of paris. also referred to as a parisienne"
I'm glad it's only the women that you don't like

StCirq - add to that list of yours

Inability to concentrate.
Seeing only the negative.
Repetitive or racing thoughts.
Poor judgment.
Loss of objectivity.
Desire to escape or run away
robjame is offline  
May 27th, 2007, 06:37 PM
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OK my mistake. You were ranting so much I lost track of the story. I still think calling the French people "frogs" is absolutely inexcusable.
suze is online now  
May 27th, 2007, 06:38 PM
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OK, smartypants:

It's parisien - masculine singular
parisienne - feminine singular

Add an "s" to either and it becomes plural.

None of those takes a capital P.

And I'll warn you right up front - don't take up language issues with me unless you're really well equipped.

Berate means to rebuke or chide vehemently and at length, which is precisely what you did to Paris and Parisians (that's the English spelling of parisiens). Scold is one synonym only - get yourself a Webster's International or an American Heritage Dictionary with the grammar and usage notes.

As an aside, I would never have found myself in your predicament because I speak French.

I agree it's best if you just stay off French soil.
StCirq is online now  
May 27th, 2007, 08:10 PM
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traveler1234, you must have to restrict your travel greatly. Everyone knows that "all New Yorkers are loud and rude" so you certainly can't go there. And "all Californians are shallow" so that leaves that out. We know the "Germans are loud and cold" and for that matter "so are the English". The Spanish and the Irish are hot blooded, so better not go there. So tell me, where on earth can you travel to where nobody has preconceived ideas of how rude the natives are?

As to your comments? Well, it's always said that rude finds only rude -- so we know you wouldn't like anywhere. And anyone with an IQ above 15 has already figured YOU out, my dear.

And as to your statement that others feel the same as you do -- well, perhaps they have traveled almost extensively in France as you have -- not at all -- so that doesn't even merit a comment.
NeoPatrick is online now  
May 27th, 2007, 08:18 PM
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I am biting my tongue to refrain from making sweeping generalizations about people who live in the "deep south".

suze is online now  
May 27th, 2007, 08:34 PM
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really, suze? Why? It seems so appropriate when people are making such sweeping generalizations about countries they've never even travled to.
NeoPatrick is online now  
May 27th, 2007, 08:36 PM
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By the way, has anyone else noted that traveler1234 has never posted here before, but registered on Fodors just to post these idiotic observations? Makes you wonder who it REALLY is.
NeoPatrick is online now  
May 28th, 2007, 07:53 AM
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And once more a simple question has degenerated into a slanging match on whether or not the Americans are liked. Yawn.

Back on track:

<<désolé and français don't rhyme.>>

Indeed they don't, but to Anglo-Saxon ears they are so close that they may as well.

Similarly for "aller" and "allais"
waring is offline  
May 28th, 2007, 09:31 AM
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Patrick, ah I was worried I might unintentionally offend other good posters who happen to live in that region.

I don't mind how this threads gone off-topic. I think it's hysterical (literally). Will be interesting to see if Traveler1234 continues to join us on other topics.

Hopefully the OP is not being influenced in a negative way -lol!

suze is online now  
May 28th, 2007, 09:53 AM
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Hey, maybe I should let this one die down, but I can't help myself. I don't believe Traveler1234 is an American. I don't know of any American who uses the terms "sodding" and "ghastly" in a normal conversation; seems to be usually used by the English. Just sayin'.
ClaraS is offline  
May 28th, 2007, 10:47 AM
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If he's a Brit faking being American, he's pretty consistant in his spelling.

This is the bit I don't get:

I didn't freakout with the cops - I was huddled in the corner in fear and doubled over in pain
waring is offline  
May 28th, 2007, 10:53 AM
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I agree, that the language and writing style is not typically American.
suze is online now  
May 28th, 2007, 11:15 AM
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Please, please don't do any more traveling outside the US. You give us all a black eye because you are truly the Ugly American.

I have been stranded in Moscow (I speak hello/goodbye Russian) and managed to get myself the 40 kilometers from the airport to the hotel with a lot of help from some very nice Muscovites. Not everyone responded to my smile and sign language but I was persistent and eventually found someone to help me. I don't think anyone would have helped me if I'd been rude and obnoxious!

Put yourself in their shoes. How much help do you think you'd give them if they came here and spoke no English and were obviously yelling at you for something you had nothing to do with?

Also, I find it offensive when you call people names based on their ethnic origin. We've had way too much of it in this country and it's time it stopped. There's a name for that -- it's called bigotry.

I definitely think you should see America first.
Joliefleur is offline  
May 30th, 2007, 04:04 AM
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>> then was taken to the US consulate to get a new passport. and back again to find my old one in the airport. <<

How on Earth have you been authorized to enter French territory without your passport ?
superheterodyne is offline  
May 30th, 2007, 05:22 AM
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Desole and francais don't rhyme? I guess that's an indication of how people can tell I'm not French. Gotta start working on that accent. Although I have been told by several French people that they like my charming American accent. Sounds like an oxymoron to me. Those same people were busy practicing their English to get rid of what they considered their unpleasant French accent, so go figure.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I just have to say that my best experiences with French people have not been at CDG airport.
Nikki is offline  
May 30th, 2007, 05:45 AM
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"and have been invited as a speaker to conferences twice since this incident 2 years ago,"

You can't say the French don't have a sense of humor.

I'm curious how T1234 knew he was being called an Ugly American, since he doesn't speak French and they "refused" to speak English.

And I don't believe for a second that you spoke to the US Consul. But why am I nit-picking? I don't believe any of this rant.

Toupary is offline  
May 30th, 2007, 06:20 AM
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It appears Traveler1234 has left the building.

And after all our good advice ;-)
suze is online now  
May 30th, 2007, 07:15 AM
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My wife and I spent seven wonderful days in Paris and the only French either of us knew was:
Bon jour - good morning
Merci - thank you
Au revoir - good bye
Bonsoir - good evening

As MissZiegfeld said "My suggestion: learn basic phrases in French. The french are big on basic politeness. When walking into a shop, you always say "bonjour" and "au revoir" upon leaving. Learn "s'il vous plait" and "merci" and use them often. You won't become fluent in French before June, and you don't need to. But learning basic phrases plays a big role in how you are treated (and this really goes for most places in the world). Always ask "parlez-vous Anglais?" (Do you speak English?) before you start speaking in English."

A side note - getting around Paris is extremely easy if you use the Metro. You can buy a three-day pass which will save $.
LivedinItaly is offline  
May 30th, 2007, 11:28 AM
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nelcarp, my wife and I just spent seven days in Paris and loved every minute of it. I honestly think the trip went much more smoothly because I did a little "self-study" in the months before our trip, both in my car and in my easy chair at night.

I posted a pretty lengthy trip report here on Fodors. Here's an excerpt from it with my observations about learning the language and some possible resources:

Everything I read on here before our trip was spot-on! I bought the beginner’s version of “Learn French in Your Car,” popped the CDs in, and learned a lot while sitting in traffic. I also looked up a lot of phrases I thought I might use on And, finally, I bought “French for Dummies,” which turned out to be a REALLY great resource. Reviewing the pocket-sized Marling Menu-Master for France before the trip was a big help, too. By the time I got done listening and studying, my pronunciation was pretty good and I felt pretty comfortable with the basics. It really paid off, as you could see the people we encountered “soften” as soon as we greeted them with “Bonjour” or “Bonsoir” and I tried out a little of my shaky French. I had to use, “Parlez-vous Anglais?” a couple of times, and only once did someone say, “Non,” and even then, I was able to muster enough French (as well as hand gestures) to communicate that we wanted a small assortment of these chocolates! Everyone we met was at least courteous and professional, and I would say the majority were friendly and even warm! Even the guys selling the cheesy Eiffel Towers at the foot of the real thing said, “Merci, au revoir,” when we answered their sales pitch with, “Merci, non.” Suffice it to say that the people of Paris made us feel very welcome!

I hope you find this helpful. And, I hope you'll write about your experiences when you get back! My wife and I are thinking about taking my 13-year-old daughter to Paris for Christmas and I'd love to hear if your daughters enjoy the trip.
DaveBrad is offline  

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