In this video I respond to the comments you left under my videos. Feel free to leave others if you have questions about learn French better 🙂
Transcript of the video
Hello to all of you. I hope that you are doing well and that your learning of French is going well. Today, we are going to answer together to the comments that you post under the videos and where you ask questions on expressions, on words in French.
I usually try to answer them directly. I find it interesting to see these answers and especially the questions together. Because if you have a question. The other students in French may also be interested in the answer to that question. Before you start, remember to turn on the subtitles. As I tell you every time, it will be easier for you to understand the video if you read in French while you listen.
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Let's start right away with a first comment. Here it is. So, the question is: what is the meaning of the expression "quand même". Quand même, in French, means "even if", "however", "despite everything". Here are two examples that will help you better understand this expression. I don't have a kitchen, but I still have a microwave to heat my meals. Even so, it is used to underline an opposition, a contradiction.
So, I don't have a kitchen, but I still have a microwave. Here's a second example. I failed my French exam, but I still passed the test on grammar. We mean, despite everything, however, I still passed one exercise of the test.
Here is another question in commentary. The question is about the expression "avoir la tête dans le guidon". It's a French expression to say that we are very concentrated on something. You are so focused that you don't see anything around you. So I can say "I have my head in the handlebars".
I'm so focused on what I'm doing or something that I can't step back. Here are two examples to help you better understand the expression. I baked cookies all afternoon. I was so focused that I didn't even notice that my dog was eating all my plants. I was so focused that I couldn't see anything around me. Here is a second example. I often ask someone to proofread the text of my videos, because I am so busy that I am not sure that my videos, that the texts of the videos are understandable, are easy enough for people who are learning French.
The next question is about the expression to look like. In the commentary he puts what "m'a l'air" means. To have the air in French, it means to seem, to appear. We can just say he looks like or we can also say he looks like me. So, if I add a reflexive pronoun, I'm going to insist on the fact that it's mine, it's me who finds it like that, it's me that it looks like that, so it can be people who look, it can be things, it can be situations. Here are two examples to help you better understand the expression. Anthony looks angry. He's really upset. He hasn't stopped bitching since this morning. I really feel like he's angry. Here's a second example. The cake that is baking in the oven looks done to me. It looks like it's ready to me and I can ask someone to make sure. Does it look ready to you too? It looks ready to you, it looks done to you.
Let's move on to the next question, the next comment. Pablo asks us if we are allowed to say in French "on l'a fait" instead of "nous avons fait". I'm just correcting the sentence because there are some small spelling mistakes and some French mistakes. Of course it's not serious at all, it's normal, that's how you learn. You have to write to train yourself. So of course, it's okay to say "we did" rather than "we did". Even in speaking we will say almost all the time, we instead of us.
For example, I'll say "are we having sushi tonight?" Or I'll say, "are we going to the movies this afternoon?", we're almost always going to use the we instead of the we. If I say, "we're going to the movies this afternoon" or "we're eating sushi tonight", it's a little weird. It's very formal language. We don't really talk like that in French. In writing, on the other hand, if you want to write in good French, in very good French, in a sustained language, you can of course use nous.
Just a small point of attention, even if we're talking about several people. Even if it's plural, it's going to be conjugated like the third person singular, like "he", like "she".
So in Sarah's next comment, there are two questions. She asks us what "I'm not doing well" and "You're doing well" means. So, let's start with the first phrase: I'm not doing well. Already, there's something pretty interesting.
In French, very often, we forget the "ne" of the negation. Normally, the negation in French is "ne...pas". So "I don't make it". But here we can see that Sara speaks French almost like a Frenchwoman, because very often, when speaking, even if it's a mistake, French people don't say the "ne". They say "je m'enors pas". So now, what does that mean? If I say that "I don't get by" or that "I don't get by", I mean that I have difficulties.
I am in a complicated situation, a complex situation. Here are two examples to help you understand. The grammar in French is really very complicated. I can't manage it, I always confuse the conditional and the future. Here is a second example. I have ten files to finish tonight. I can't manage.
It's really too much. I would never have finished.
Sara's second question is about the phrase "You're doing great." If I say to someone that they are doing well, it means that they were in a situation that looked like a disaster. It looked like he was in a really bad situation and he wasn't going to make it. In the end, he's doing fine. It means that the situation is turning in his favor. In the end, it's pretty positive.
Here are two examples to help you better understand this expression. You got an 11 out of 20 on your French exam even though you didn't study. You are doing well. You could have gotten a zero. Here's a second example. I thought I had gained 20 pounds after eating pizza for a week. I'm doing fine, I only gained three kilos.
In the following comment, there are two questions. Let's start with the first question, do "ben" and "bah" mean the same thing?
These are words that are often used to mean the same thing. Here is an example. "- You look hungry tonight! Didn't you have breakfast?" She can answer me: well yes, I'm just hungry. Or "Well, I am, but I'm very hungry".
Well, even more than ben is going to be used in a very specific context. It's used as... as if we were shrugging our shoulders to say "it's not serious". For example, if someone tells me, "I failed my French test this week." I can say, "well, that's okay, you'll pass next week."
The second question in this commentary concerns the expression "hein" in French. The question is, can you use "hein" to show that you don't understand something? Yes, that's how "hein" is used. I can say: "Huh, what are you saying?" So be careful, it's a colloquial expression. Don't use it with your boss. If he says something that you didn't understand, then it's better to say, "Could you please repeat that?" or just that you didn't understand.
Here is another example to help you contextualize this expression. The recipe calls for two half eggs. But why not just use one egg?
And that's it for today. I hope you enjoyed this video. If you liked it, don't forget to put a like on it and don't hesitate to ask me more questions in comments so I can answer them in a next video.