lundi 6 octobre 2014

Je m'en fous

The first time I heard this word was at the French School of Lagos where I was working as a supervisor. It was my first job straight out of university where I studied French Language.

The school has nursery, primary and secondary sections and children who attended had rich parents who worked in big companies such as Total, CFAO, Schlumberger, Air France, etc. Some were kids of ambassadors to francophones countries... so you can guess that a lot of them are spoilt brats.

I worked with the secondary section and had a lot of trouble making them respect rules. When I tell them they'll be punished for doing something wrong, I sometimes get responses like « Je m'en fous » when in reality it isn't true.

When I tell them they will have to come to school on saturday as punishment for doing something they shouldn't have done or for not doing what they should do, they'll say they don't care. But I do know they care as they wouldn't want to be in school all alone on a saturday for extra classwork when they could be having fun with friends... I simply thought « Je m'en fous » means I don't care... somthing like "I am not bothered" but in reality it's worse !
After I moved to France I realised that « Je m'en fous » is a vulgar version of I don't care. It's informal and impolite. Translated to English it means I don't give a shit / I don't give a fuck.

An appropriate way to say I don't care is "ça m'est égal". An informal way to say it is "je m'en fiche" and a vulgar way to say it is "je m'en fous".

Today, a lot of people use « Je m'en fous ». Although it has lost its shock value, it doesn't make it in anyway approriate in a formal setting. You still can't say that to your boss. Note that the tone of the voice also classifies the expression in the vulgarity hierarchy.
Foutre as a word (masculin) : sperm, cum.

Ex :

Répandre son foutre : to ejaculate, to come
Foutre as a verb : faire, placer, mettre., jeter, lancer

Je fous
Tu fous
Il/Elle fout
Nous foutons
Vous foutez
Ils/Elles foutent

Ex :
  • Je fous ça où ? - Where the hell do I put this ?
  • Fous-le par terre - Throw/place/put/fling it on the ground
  • Fous-la à la porte - To throw her out
  • Il me fout la trouille ! - He gives me the creeps!
  • Fous-moi la paix - Leave me the hell alone
  • Je n'en ai rien à foutre - I don't give a damn / I don't give a fuck
  • Il n'a rien foutu de la journée - He didn't lift a finger all day / He didn't do anything all day
  • Qu'est-ce que tu fous ? -What the hell are you doing ?
  • Qu'est-ce qu'il fout chez moi ? What the hell is he looking for in my home?
  • Qu'est-ce que ça peut te foutre ? - What the hell does it matter to you ?
  • Va te faire foutre - Fuck you / fuck off
  • Fous le camp de chez moi ! - get the hell out of my house !
  • J'ai envie de leur foutre des baffes - I feel like slapping them.
  • Il m'a foutu une claque dans la gueule - He gave me a dirty slap
  • Il s'est foutu le nez dans quelque chose qui ne lui concerne pas - He stuck his nose in something that doesn't concerne him
  • Il est venu foutre le bordel - He came to wreak havoc / to cause problems
  • Cette armée est là pour tout foutre en l'air. - This army is here to screw things up.
  • Qu'est-ce que j'en ai à foutre que tu sois là ou pas ? - What thr bloody hell do I care if you are here or not

Se foutre / S'en foutre as apronominal verb : to make fun of / to laugh at somebody, not to give a damn / not to care

Se foutre à l'eau : se mettre, se jeter, se lancer quelque part 
Se foutre de quelqu'un : se moquer de quelqu'un / être indifférent / se désintéresser
Se foutre dedans : se mettre dans l'embarras, se tromper, faire erreur 
Se foutre en colère / en rogne : se mettre en colère

Je me fous
Tu te fous
Il/Elle se fout
Nous nous foutons
Vous vous foutez
Ils/Elles se foutent

Ex :
  • Tu te fous de moi ou quoi ? - Are you taking me for a fool or what ?
  • Il s'en fout complètement - he doesn't care at all
  • Je pense qu'il se fou de ma gueule - he's fucking with me
  • Je me fous de ce qu'il peut bien dire - I don't care about what he has to say
  • Elle se fout du monde ! - She is taking everyone for idiots !
  • Je m'en fous de ce que tu penses de moi - I don't care about what you think about me
  • Ils se foutent tous de ma gueule ou quoi ? - Are they kidding me/making a fool out of me ou what?
  • Elle s'est foutu dans la merde - She has gotten herself into trouble

Ecoutez la chanson de Edith Piaf - Je m'en fous pas mal

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