Sunday, January 26, 2014


This is the kind of thing that simultaneously irritates and fascinates me.

I am listening to a video on the BBC Languages web site. (The site is marked as 'not updated recently', so it could depart at any time!)

In the video, a man is giving directions to a driver. He says Vous tournez au feu Ă  gauche, which means 'turn left at the traffic light'.  What makes it weird is that first, the word order is not what you'd expect -- a literal translation would be You turn at the light to the left, and second, the word for 'traffic light' is feu, which is literally fire.  There are other ways to say it, ways that use words like lamp and such, so, guys.... fire? 

Now I know the French arrange their language just to mess with my mind!

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