Getting Laid in French

For those who don't know, Montreal is the largest city in the province of Quebec (located in that northern country known as Canada). Quebec is a French province and Montreal is mostly French as well.

On Sunday, as the kids and I were walking downtown, we passed a man begging with a sign. As we passed, Tania asked me, "Why does he say he's ugly?" I asked what she meant and she said, "His sign says, 'Je suis laid'". She further explained that laid means ugly.

I had seen the sign but did not understand the first part since I didn't know what laid meant and I assumed (incorrectly) the kids didn't either. The rest of the sign (which I did understand) said ... help me out and I can get a facial. (ok, it said it in French not English).

The word came up again last night as Jason was reading to me Les Trois Boucs: "... un ogre tres laid et très méchant ..." ("... a very ugly and very mean ogre ...") .

It is pronounced the same way as the French words lait and les, namely (for English speakers) leh.

Image nabbed from here.

I adjusted the image to remove a bluish tint, I don't know if this is permissible under the Creative Commons license or not (depends how you argue what constitutes a 'derivative' work).

Comments

b said…
I imagine you're stat counter is going to reflect some interesting keyword searches leading to this post! :)

I too wasn't aware that laid means ugly in French. That is so sad that the begging man held such a sign.

I've heard that Montreal is so beautiful. I am thinking about visiting on my road trip, as I'll be up in New England.
Richard said…
breal: well, we'll see what kind of hits it generates (if any). For the past month, I have been inundated with hits for this SPAM. Always seems to peak in January and May. I understand why in January, but May.

I think his sign was more in irony that self loathing. He was a fairly young man.

Montreal is quite nice. Along with Ottawa, it is one of my favourite cities. It is very cosmopolitan. Mind you, I know it as a resident not a tourist - so there might be much I have missed over the years.
acey said…
french is a beautiful language!
Richard said…
acey: for me, French is French. I grew up hearing multiple languages around me: English, French, Polish, and now (because of Sofia and the kids) Spanish.

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