Video:Learn French: 5 Common Informal French Gestureswith Milo De Prieto
The French are a very expressive culture, and these gestures should be used in only the most casual circumstances. Learn 5 informal gestures in French with examples and explanations in this French video from About.com.See Transcript
Transcript:Learn French: 5 Common Informal French Gestures
Bonjour I'm Milo for About.com and today we are talking about 5 informal French gestures. These examples and more can be found on our French site. You'll also find some other helpful videos on the topic. These gestures are very informal and should be used when you are really comfortable in the situation and know how they'll be received.
Informal French Gestures
Au poil. The thumbs up is fairly universal, well at least in France. Remember to raise your fist up and down, not like the more static American version.
Malgré que tu te sois tordu la cheville la semaine dernière, tu es arrivé le premier à la course. Au poil! Even though you sprained your ankle last week you came in first in the race, excellent!
Bouche cousue. Zipping your lips also seems fairly obvious and universal, but remember this is also very familiar, don't use it everywhere.
Elle m'a dit qu'elle allait lui demander mariage ce soir, donc motus et bouche cousue. She told me that she will ask him to marry her tonight, but keep your lips zipped.
Comme-ci, comme-ça. Neither here nor there is underlined by this quintessential and charming French gesture underlining your indifference.
Nos options sont: cuisine indienne ou cuisine thaïlandaise? Comme-ci, comme-ça.Our choices are Indian food or Thai food? To me it's neither here nor there.
More Informal French Gestures
Ras-le-bol. Think of this one as saying you've had it up to here, cause that's pretty much what you are gesturing. The French can be so much more wonderfully demonstrative. C'est le cinquième jour de pluie suivi, ras-le-bol. This is the 5th consecutive day of rain, enough already.
Rien. For other cultures this can be confusing, it does not mean ok or alright, but zero, worthless, or nothing. Make sure to remember the difference or you might find yourself in some awkward situations. Tu m'apportes un cadeau de ton voyage auquel je n'étais pas invité, rien. You brought me a gift from a trip I wasn't invited on, that's worthless.
For more helpful and excellent information on speaking and learning French, check us out at About.com.