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Transfert s01e22, Quiz 40: au moins

    Improve your ear for fast spoken French with this clip from Transfert! Can you catch all these great phrases? “la copine”, “au moins”, “pas de la plus grande souplesse”, and “manifestement”? And can you guess what “soupline” could mean? Hear them all in this clip. Start at any level and fill in the blanks with…

    Learn French with a podcast snippet! This clip is is from Transfert s01ep22. We do not own the content. Listen to the entire episode here.

    16 seconds, 51 words
    ,, « » ' « » ' '.
    ,euheuhcopineYannickarrivée,massage « moinsdouce » m'appelait « soupline » j'étaispas j'étaispasgrandesouplesseeuhmanifestement.
    puis,euheuhcopineYannickarrivée,afaitmassagepuismedit « benaumoinsestdouce » que m'appelait « soupline » parceque j'étaispas j'étaispaslagrandesouplesseeuhmanifestement.

    The above audio sample and transcription is from Transfert s01ep22. We do not own the content. Listen to the entire episode here.

    at least

    What’s opening up for you with this clip?

    The snippet in English

    Find a translation of this snippet here, how much of this did you hear?

    Et puis, euh euh la copine de Yannick est arrivée, elle lui a fait un massage et puis papa me dit « ben elle au moins elle est douce » parce que moi il m’appelait « soupline » parce que j’étais pas j’etais pas de la plus grande souplesse euh manifestement.

    And then, uh uh Yannick’s girlfriend arrived, she gave him a massage and then Dad said to me “well at least she’s gentle” because he called me “soupline” because I wasn’t the most supple, uh obviously.

    The above translation from Deepl

    What does “la copine” mean?

    “La copine” in French translates to “the girlfriend” in English. However, its usage can be broader than the English term, often encompassing both romantic and platonic contexts.

    Usage and Context:

    • Romantic Relationship: In many instances, “la copine” refers to a romantic partner.
      • Example: “C’est la copine de Thomas.” (She is Thomas’s girlfriend.)
    • Female Friend: It can also simply mean a female friend, particularly in informal contexts.
      • Example: “Je vais au cinéma avec ma copine.” (I am going to the movies with my (female) friend.)

    Nuance:

    • Context-Dependent: The exact meaning of “la copine” (girlfriend or female friend) is usually inferred from the context. The nature of the relationship is often understood based on the conversation or known relationships.
    • Age and Informality: “Copine” is more commonly used among younger people and in informal settings. For formal contexts or adult relationships, other terms like “amie” or “petite amie” might be used for platonic and romantic relationships, respectively.

    Cultural Notes:

    • Flexibility in Relationships: French language and culture often exhibit a fluid approach to relationships, and terms like “copine” reflect this flexibility. The distinction between different types of relationships can be less rigidly defined than in some other cultures.
    • Common Usage: “La copine” is a common term in everyday French conversation, widely understood and used across different age groups, especially among younger speakers.

    Summary:

    “La copine” is a French term meaning “the girlfriend,” but it can also refer to a female friend, depending on the context. The term is flexible and widely used in informal and everyday conversation, with its exact meaning often inferred from the surrounding context or known relationships. This dual usage reflects the less formal and more fluid approach to defining relationships in French culture.

    What does “au moins” mean?

    The phrase “au moins” translates to “at least” in English. It’s used to signify a minimum amount or number, or to express the least that can be expected in a given situation.

    Usage and Context:

    • Indicating a Minimum: “Au moins” is used to indicate the minimum amount, number, or extent of something.
    • Softening Statements: It can be used to soften a statement, offering a consolation or a less negative perspective on a situation.
    • Emphasizing the Positive: Often, it’s used to highlight a positive aspect in a situation that might otherwise be seen as negative or disappointing.

    Examples:

    1. Quantitative Context: “Il faut boire au moins deux litres d’eau par jour.” (One must drink at least two liters of water a day.)
    2. Consolatory or Optimistic Use: “J’ai perdu le match, mais au moins j’ai fait de mon mieux.” (I lost the match, but at least I did my best.)

    Nuance:

    • Expressing the Least Favorable Scenario: “Au moins” is often used to describe the least favorable or minimum acceptable scenario in various situations, from quantitative measures to life experiences.
    • Comparative Contexts: It’s also used in comparisons to emphasize the minimum in a range of possibilities.

    Cultural Notes:

    • Common in Everyday Speech: “Au moins” is widely used in everyday French conversations. It’s a practical phrase for a variety of situations, from casual chats to more formal discussions.
    • Versatility in Language: The phrase demonstrates the versatility of French in expressing nuances, particularly in setting expectations or looking for positive angles in various contexts.

    Summary:

    “Au moins” means “at least” in French, used to indicate a minimum amount or to express the least that can be expected. It’s a common phrase in both spoken and written French, serving to soften statements, highlight positive aspects in negative situations, or set minimum expectations. This phrase is versatile and widely applicable in a range of conversational contexts.

    What does “soupline” mean?

    In the provided clip, the term “soupline” appears to be a nickname or a playful moniker given based on the context of the conversation. Here’s a breakdown of its potential meaning and use in this context:

    “Soupline”

    1. Not a Standard French Word: “Soupline” is not a standard word in French. It seems to be a play on the word “souple,” which means “flexible” or “supple” in English.
    2. Contextual Interpretation: Given the context of the clip, it sounds like “soupline” is a nickname or a term of endearment used to highlight a lack of physical flexibility or gentleness in the speaker, in contrast to Yannick’s girlfriend, who is described as being “douce” (gentle or soft).
    3. Nickname Usage: In many cultures, including French, it’s common to use affectionate or humorous nicknames based on personal traits or habits. These nicknames often have a playful or teasing element but can be used affectionately.
    4. Contrast to “Douce”: The father’s comment “ben elle au moins elle est douce” (well, she at least is gentle/soft) contrasts the girlfriend’s gentleness with the speaker’s perceived lack of gentleness or flexibility, humorously referred to as “soupline.”

    Summary:

    In the clip, “soupline” appears to be a unique or made-up nickname, deriving humorously from “souple,” meaning flexible or supple. It’s used to playfully denote the speaker’s lack of physical flexibility or softness, in contrast to Yannick’s girlfriend, who is described as gentle. This kind of affectionate, teasing nickname is common in conversational French and often reflects a personal trait or characteristic of the individual.

    What does “pas de la plus grande souplesse” mean?

    The phrase “pas de la plus grande souplesse” translates to “not of the greatest flexibility” in English. It is used to indicate a lack of flexibility or suppleness, either in a literal physical sense or metaphorically in terms of adaptability or ease of movement.

    Usage and Context:

    • Describing Physical Flexibility: Commonly, this phrase might be used to describe someone who is not very physically flexible or agile.
    • Metaphorical Use: It can also be employed metaphorically to describe someone’s character or approach as being inflexible or rigid.

    Examples:

    1. Physical Context: “Je suis pas de la plus grande souplesse, donc le yoga est difficile pour moi.” (I am not of the greatest flexibility, so yoga is difficult for me.)
    2. Metaphorical Context: “Dans les discussions, il n’est pas de la plus grande souplesse.” (In discussions, he is not very flexible.)

    Nuance:

    • Understatement: The phrase is an example of an understatement, a way of saying that someone is not flexible without being too direct or harsh.
    • Reflects Politeness in Language: Such expressions reflect the subtlety and politeness often found in French communication, where direct criticism is softened.

    Cultural Notes:

    • Euphemistic Expression: French language often uses euphemisms and indirect expressions. “Pas de la plus grande souplesse” is a polite, somewhat understated way of indicating a lack or deficiency in some quality, like flexibility, without being blunt or overly critical.

    Summary:

    “Pas de la plus grande souplesse” means “not of the greatest flexibility” in French. It’s used to describe a lack of physical flexibility or, metaphorically, a lack of adaptability or ease in character or approach. The phrase is an example of the French language’s tendency toward understatement and indirectness, particularly in contexts where direct criticism or negative assessment is involved.

    What does “manifestement” mean?

    “Manifestement” is a French adverb that translates to “obviously” or “clearly” in English. It is used to indicate that something is evident, apparent, or easily perceived.

    Usage and Context:

    • Expressing Clarity or Obviousness: “Manifestement” is often used to emphasize the clarity or apparent nature of a situation, fact, or opinion.
    • Strengthening a Statement: It can be used to strengthen a statement by underscoring its obviousness or indisputability.

    Examples:

    1. Emphasizing the Obvious: “Il est manifestement fatigué.” (He is obviously tired.)
    2. In Argument or Debate: “Manifestement, nous ne sommes pas d’accord.” (Clearly, we do not agree.)

    Nuance:

    • Indication of Evidence: The use of “manifestement” suggests that the evidence for the statement is plain or manifest.
    • Persuasive Speech: It can be a persuasive tool in arguments or discussions, indicating that the speaker believes their point is evident and should be readily accepted.

    Cultural Notes:

    • French Rhetoric: In French, the use of adverbs like “manifestement” reflects the language’s richness in rhetorical and persuasive expression. Such adverbs are commonly used to add weight and clarity to statements.

    Summary:

    “Manifestement” is an adverb in French that means “obviously” or “clearly.” It is used to emphasize the apparent or evident nature of something, often employed in contexts where the speaker wishes to underscore the undisputed nature of a fact or opinion. Its usage reflects the nuanced and persuasive elements characteristic of French rhetorical style.

    What is opening up for you?

    Comment below with the words you thought you heard, where you struggled, where you surprised yourself, or what you thought about this clip. Every little bit inspires other learners, thank you for being that inspiration to others on their French fluency journey!

    Improve your ear for fast spoken French with this clip from Transfert! Can you catch all these great phrases? “la copine”, “au moins”, “pas de la plus grande souplesse”, and “manifestement”? And can you guess what “soupline” could mean? Hear them all in this clip. Start at any level and fill in the blanks with…

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