Posted by: kathandroger | November 22, 2011

Descartes ‘The Flasher’?

It is usually us that make our french friends laugh with our linguistic errors. All the more pleasing, therefore, to see an amusing usage of an english word! We were in the cafe at our local town, Descartes, on Sunday morning (as we are every week, as it is market day). Our little group of Brits was amused to see a poster of the town’s most famous former inhabitant, Rene Descartes, with the statement in bold ‘Je flashe sur ma ville’. Here, indeed is the statue of the said philosopher which is just outside the cafe…

Certainly no signs of flashing here, all is well fastened in! Flasher is a french word I hadn’t come across before, and means love, ie M. Descartes loves his town. Unlike days gone by when anglicisms were strictly forbidden, it has become fashionable to use English or English sounding words. Someone obviously thought flasher was an English verb – well it is, but not quite as they imagined. We told our french friends – they were mortified! Oh how we laughed….


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