Vocabulary (Review)

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Lesson Transcript

Sam: Today I’m joined here by?
Céline: Céline.
Sam: So, Céline, what’s the backdrop for today’s lesson?
Céline: The focus of this lesson today is to express obligations in French.
Sam: And the conversation takes place at?
Céline: Alexandra’s place, during dinner.
Sam: And the conversation is between?
Céline: Alexandra and Philippe.
Sam: Okay, are the speakers friends?
Céline: Yes, they are.
Sam: So I think they’ll be using casual French, right?
Céline: Exactement.
Sam: Okay, great! Let’s start.
Woman: A la tienne, Philippe!
Woman: Santé...
Woman: Aaargh! On doit ouvrir un autre vin!
Woman: On doit chercher une autre bouteille.
Woman: Quel vin dégoûtant!
Sam: One more time, with the English.
Céline: Encore une fois, avec l’anglais.
Woman: A la tienne, Philippe!
Male: “Cheers, Philippe!”
Woman: Santé...
Male: “To you.”
Woman: Aaargh! On doit ouvrir un autre vin! On doit chercher une autre bouteille.
Male: “Ah, we must get another bottle.”
Woman: Quel vin dégoûtant!
Male: “What a disgusting wine.”
Sam: A disgusting wine? How do you know when a wine’s good?
Céline: By tasting it?
Sam: What about label?
Céline: Oh yes, of course. Label is really important. It has to mention the origin, la mise en bouteille.
Sam: What’s “la mise en bouteille”?
Céline: Where the wine was bottled.
Sam: Okay, very important information. How about wine in foreign countries or overseas?
Céline: Well, I think if you want to drink a good wine, you have to pay. So, the more expensive, the better.
Sam: Yes, it goes back to the old proverb “You get what you pay for”, right?
Céline: Yes. Exactement.
Sam: Oh, great.
Céline: But, let’s remind our listeners that we have a special audio blog about wine.
Sam: So listeners, check the website for that special blog on wines. I’m sure it’s quite informative.
Céline: Exactement.
Sam: So, Céline is the year important for the wine?
Céline: Of course it is. It depends if it’s a red or white wine.
Sam: Let’s talk about red, first. The older the better or the newer the better?
Céline: It depends on the year. New wine can be really good.
Sam: Case by case, right?
Céline: Exactement.
Sam: Now, how about white wine?
Céline: White wine? I think, the best are in North of France.
Sam: The northern ones are the best.
Céline: Yes, they are.
Sam: Are they sweet or tart or –
Céline: Oh, it depends. You can have dry wine or sweet wine. It depends on what you eat. That’s the most important.
Sam: Now, let’s have a look at the vocabulary and phrases from this lesson.
Sam: The first item is?
Céline: Vin.
Sam: “Wine”.
Céline: Vin. Vin.
Sam: Next.
Céline: Chercher.
Sam: “To look for, to get”.
Céline: Chercher. Chercher.
Sam: Next.
Céline: A la tienne!
Sam: “Cheers”.
Céline: A la tienne! A la tienne!
Sam: Next.
Céline: Santé!
Sam: “Cheers”.
Céline: Santé! Santé!
Sam: Next.
Céline: Ouvrir.
Sam: “To open”.
Céline: Ouvrir. Ouvrir.
Sam: Next.
Céline: Bouteille.
Sam: “Bottle”.
Céline: Bouteille. Bouteille.
Sam: Now, let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Céline: The first word is “vin”.
Sam: “Wine”, well, we saw that word before, right?
Céline: Yes, and I think in the previous lesson. But today let’s see the compound “bouteille de vin”.
Sam: “Bottle of wine”. I like that.
Céline: Yes. As wine always comes in bottles. Right, Sam?
Sam: Not always.
Céline: Well, good wine. “Bouteille” is a feminine noun, so we say “une bouteille de vin”. It can also be anything else like: Une bouteille d’eau.
Sam: “A bottle of water”. So, “of” is “de”.
Céline: “Une bouteille de” plus something, for example, a bottle of Perrier: Une bouteille de Perrier.
Sam: “A bottle of beer?”
Céline: Une bouteille de bière. Next we have: A la tienne!
Sam: “Cheers”.
Céline: Yes. A la tienne is for cheering, literally meaning “to yours”. If you’re with many people, you may say “à la vôtre”.
Sam: Literally “to yours”.
Céline: A la nôtre!
Sam: “To ours”.
Céline: Yes, we can also say “santé”, meaning “health”.
Sam: You know, when you clink the glasses, how do you say that in French?
Céline: Porter un toast. Porter un toast is formal, “trinquer” is the casual one. For example: “Je porte un toast”, “je trinque.”
Sam: I see, great. The next word is?
Céline: Chercher. “To look for”. This is a verb from the first group. We have a nice word in French that says: Qui cherche trouve.
Sam: “Seek and you shall find.” That’s very true.
Céline: For example, in the dialogue, Alexandra says: On doit chercher une autre bouteille de vin.
Sam: “We have to look for another bottle of wine.”
Céline: Yes.
Sam: Okay, so what’s the next word?
Céline: The next word is “ouvrir”.
Sam: “To open”.
Céline: J’ouvre une bouteille de vin.
Sam: “I’m opening a bottle of wine.”
Céline: J’ouvre une bouteille de champagne.
Sam: “I’m opening a bottle of champagne.”
Céline: Or in French we say “Je sabre une bouteille de champagne.” or “Je sabre une bouteille de champagne.”
Sam: Huh? Sabre?
Céline: Oui, “sabre”, avec un sabre, “a sword”.
Sam: You’re going to cut the bottle with a sword?
Céline: Yes. A long time ago we used to do that in France. Not anymore. It’s really dangerous, don’t do that at home.
Sam: Yeah, you might cut yourself.
Céline: Yes. Il faut de la dextérité.
Sam: You have to be dexterous if you use a sword, right?
Céline: Yes, of course.
Sam: I think so, too.
Céline: Another example with “ouvrir”: Sam, ouvre les yeux. “Open your eyes.”
Sam: Okay, I just opened them.
Céline: Yes, but that means “be aware of what’s going on”.
Sam: It’s a French expression.
Céline: Yes. And also, an excellent movie “Ouvre les yeux”. Tu dois le regarder. You should watch it.
Sam: “Dois”? What’s the infinitive form of this verb?
Céline: Devoir. “should”. This verb is the main part of our today’s grammar. So we will talk about it later. How about the last word? Dégoûtant.
Sam: “Disgusting”.
Céline: So, “dégoûtant” can describe a taste of something or a place as in “cet endroit est dégoûtant”.
Sam: “This place is disgusting.”
Céline: Ce plat est dégoûtant.
Sam: “This dish is disgusting.”
Céline: So, “dégoûtant” can be casual. You may say “abject” ou “écoeurant”.
Sam: And they all mean the same thing, “disgusting” or “filthy”.
Céline: Yes, “filthy”. So how about some grammar in order to change this disgusting topic?
Sam: Good idea.

Lesson focus

Sam: In French, to express necessity, we use the verb “devoir” and in the dialogue we heard the word “doit”. The word “doit”, “d”, “o”, “I”, “t” comes in “devoir”. It’s the third person singular meaning “must”. Be aware, “devoir” is an irregular verb from the third group. To express any obligations or necessities, people speaking need to use the word “doit” followed by a verb in the infinitive form. The construction’s easy; third person singular of “devoir” plus the infinitive.
Céline: It’s really easy, but let’s see that in concrete examples. On doit travailler.
Sam: “We have to work.”
Céline: On doit prendre des photos de la tour Eiffel.
Sam: “We have to take photos of the Eiffel Tower.”
Céline: On doit apprendre le français.
Sam: “We have to study French.” Really?
Céline: Yes. C’est une langue diplomatique.
Sam: It’s a diplomatic language?
Céline: As in the dialogue, the unfortunate incident of tasting wine, disappoint Philip and Alexandra. To overcome the deception, they express “On doit chercher une autre bouteille de vin”. So, “on doit” plus infinitive verb “chercher”.
Sam: Yes. So, Céline, another use of “devoir” for example?
Céline: Je dois partir.
Sam: “I have to leave.”
Céline: So the verb “devoir” can be conjugated with “je”, “tu”, “il”, “nous”, “vous”, ils”.
Sam: Yes, of course Céline! Remember on the singular side it’s quite easy. During the conjugation, remember the supersonic train from our previous lesson? Je dois, tu dois, il, elle, on doit? The last letter of the “je” form and “tu” form is “s”. The third person singular “il, elle, on” ends in “t”. Supersonic train. So, in that side of the chart, it’s quite easy to remember, right?
Céline: Tout à fait. So, you said “on”, the translation of “on” in English would be “we” in casual situations or “people” in general. Like in: On doit croire en soi.
Sam: “People have to believe in themselves.”
Céline: Yes, one other thing, Sam. When you use the verb “devoir” in its transitive form and when it’s not followed by a verb “devoir” means “to owe” like in: Je dois 20 euros à Alex.
Sam: “I owe Alex 20 euros.” Okay, I got it. Let me recap everything. “Devoir” in our lesson, expresses obligation and necessity. The pattern is: pronoun, conjugated form of “devoir” and the infinitive. The verb “devoir”, alone, conjugated, simply means “owe”, for example when you said “I owe Alex 20 euros.”
Céline: Je dois 20 euros à Alex.
Sam: Okay, great. And one more important tip, listeners. “On” means “we”. So, I think: On doit terminer la leçon?


Céline: Yes, I think “on doit terminer la leçon”. “We have to finish the lesson”.
Sam: Great, let’s go get a glass of wine!
Céline: Yes, but only in bottle.
Sam: In a box? Great! Until the next time!
Céline: A bientôt!
Sam: Bye-bye!