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Sam: “Step on it! Drive faster!” And today I’m joined here again by –
Sylvain: Sylvain.
Sam: And?
Céline: Céline.
Sam: So, we have another lovely lesson today, but what’s the focus of today’s lesson?
Sylvain: Car driving.
Céline: Pas tout à fait. Not exactly. The focus of this lesson is to practice the conjugation of the indicative present for the second group verb.
Sam: Sounds good to me.
Céline: But in this conversation Sandrine and Hervé are playing a French car game, called “1000 kilometers”.
Sylvain: Les Cent Bornes. Les Mille Bornes.
Céline: Mille Bornes.
Sylvain: Les Mille Bornes.
Céline: So, this conversation takes place at home and it’s between Sandrine and Hervé.
Sam: Okay, on y va.
Sylvain: C’est parti!
Céline: Feu rouge! Ah non...
Sylvain: Je choisis les 100 bornes!
Céline: Haaa tu réussis! Héhéhé, pneu crevé!
Sylvain: Haa! Je réfléchis...
Sam: One more time, slowly.
Sylvain: Encore une fois, lentement.
Céline: Feu rouge! Ah non...
Sylvain: Je choisis les 100 bornes!
Céline: Haaa tu réussis! Héhéhé, pneu crevé!
Sylvain: Haa! Je réfléchis...
Sam: One more time, with the English.
Sylvain: Encore une fois, avec l’anglais.
Céline: Feu rouge! Ah non...
Sam: “Red light, oh no!”
Sylvain: Je choisis les 100 bornes!
Sam: “I choose 100 kilometers.”
Céline: Haaa tu réussis! Héhéhé, pneu crevé!
Sam: “Hey, you succeeded. Flat tire!”
Sylvain: Haa! Je réfléchis...
Sam: “I’m thinking.”
Sam: Wow, seems like Hervé is a sore loser. How about you guys?
Sylvain: Moi je ne joue pas pour gagner ou perdre. Je joue pour savoir si je vais gagner ou si je vais perdre.
Sam: “Me? I don’t play to win or to lose. I play just to know if I’m going to win or to lose”. Quite deep.
Céline: Yes, it is deep. But it’s not from Sylvain, it’s from Alfred Capus. Anyway, French are not sore losers, at least not me. But, I hate “les tricheurs”.
All 3: Cheaters!
Sam: Now, let’s look at the vocabulary and phrases from this lesson.
Sam: The first item is?
Céline: Feu rouge.
Sam: “Red traffic light”.
Céline: Feu rouge. Feu rouge.
Sam: Next.
Sylvain: Choisir.
Sam: “To choose”.
Sylvain: Choisir. Choisir.
Sam: Next.
Céline: Pneu.
Sam: “Tire”.
Céline: Pneu. Pneu.
Sam: Next.
Sylvain: Réussir.
Sam: “To succeed”.
Sylvain: Réussir. Réussir.
Sam: Next.
Céline: Crevé(e).
Sam: “Punctured”, “tired” (familiar).
Céline: Crevé(e). Crevé(e).
Sam: Next.
Sylvain: Réfléchir.
Sam: “To think of” or “to think about”.
Sylvain: Réfléchir. Réfléchir.
Sam: Okay, now let’s look at the usage of some of these items from our lesson.
Céline: The first item we’ll look at is…
Sylvain: Feu rouge. Feu rouge.
Sam: Literally “red fire”, but the actual translation is “red traffic light”.
Céline: Yes. So, in the dialogue Sandrine’s card happens to be “un feu rouge” so, she passes her turn. Green light would be…, Sylvain?
Sylvain: Feu vert. Feu vert.
Céline: And finally “feu orange”, orange, which warns you that it’s going to be red.
Sam: Good. Next we have?
Sylvain: Choisir.
Sam: “To choose”. So I assume this is a verb from the second group.
Sylvain: Oui, as well as “réfléchir”.
Sam: “To think”.
Sylvain: And “réussir”.
Sam: “To succeed”.
Sylvain: All the verbs you find in the dialogue, their “conjugaison” is relatively easy, but we will talk about that later in the grammar. But, sweet Céline, why don’t you give us a fresh example with these verbs?
Céline: Entre les vacances et le travail, je choisis les vacances.
Sam: “Between holidays and work, I choose holidays.” You can’t be more French.
Céline: Yes, but that was a clear example. How about “Sylvain réfléchit parfois”.
Sam: “Sylvain thinks sometimes.”
Sylvain: Thank you. Céline réussit toujours à changer les pneus crevés.
Sam: “Céline always succeeds in changing punctured tires.”
Céline: Great link Sylvain, because next we have “pneu” which means “tire” in English. Vive Michelin! And obviously a tire is made to be punctured.
Sylvain: That’s right.
Sam: “Punctured” or it can also mean “tired”, right?
Sylvain: Tout à fait, exactly, it’s more familiar, maybe in English it would be “wiped out”. Ah je suis crevé.
Céline: Well, Sylvain get a triple shot espresso because it’s time for the grammar.
Sylvain: Yahoo!

Lesson focus

Sylvain: Well first of all, I’d like to tell our dear listeners that we understand how boring the grammar can be, especially the conjugation. There’s no secret. You have to learn it by heart. Par coeur.
Céline: How pessimistic, Sylvain! You’re going to scare our listeners!
Sam: Yes, Sylvain. Well, there’s a special tip to learn them. Just learn the pattern of the verb group and if you remember it, you’ll be fine. It’s not as hard as it looks.
Céline: Merci beaucoup Sam. So, today we’ll be focusing on the second group verb. This group includes all the verbs ending by “ir”, with a very few exceptions. But, let’s get a closer look at the verbs in our conversation.
Sylvain: Je choisis 100 bornes. Je choisis 100 bornes.
Sam: “I choose 100 miles.”
Céline: “Je choisis” is the first person singular at the indicative present of the verb “choisir”, if you want to say: “Hervé chooses 100 kilometers.” Sylvain?
Sylvain: Hervé choisit 100 bornes. Hervé choisit 100 bornes.
Sam: There’s no difference between “I choose” and “he chooses”.
Céline: Oui, not to the “ir”, only when you write it. But please check out the writing form on our PDF section. Now, let’s look at the second phrase which is “tu réussis”. Here, we have the second person singular of the verb “réussir”.
Sam: Wow, so the same pronunciation.
Sylvain: As easy as one, two, three!
Céline: Yes, then the last verb is “réfléchir” with the sentence “je réfléchis”.
Sam: “I think about.”
Sylvain: Oui, Sam. Don’t be confused between the verb “réfléchir”, “to think about” and the verb “penser”, “to think.”
Céline: Merci Sylvain! So, to sum up, Sam?
Sam: So, another quick and easy tip for our listeners with the regular “ir” verbs on the singular side, they would end its follows. The last letter for the “je” form would end in “s”, the last letter for the “tu” form will end in “s”, that their personal singular form will end in “t”. Supersonic train.
Céline: Bravo! And then we have the plural forms. Sylvain?
Sylvain: “-issons” as in “nous finissons”.
Sam: “We finish”.
Céline: “-issez” as in “vous choisissez”.
Sam: “You choose”, but this “you” form is plural or formal.
Sylvain: “-issent” as in “ils réfléchissent”.
Sam: “They think about”.
Céline: And “elles désobéissent”.
Sam: “They disobey”. This would be a female group. I’m not surprised.
Sylvain: Céline it’s funny how you threw a line to Sam every time.
Céline: Yes, that’s what I am Sylvain.
Sam: Hey, how do you say “throw a line” in French?
Céline: Tendre la perche.
Sam: “Tendre” is a verb which means?
Sylvain: It has lots of meanings, but in that case it means “to hold”.
Céline: Yes, this is a verb from the third group, for this for the next lesson guys. Now it’s time to finir la leçon.
Sam: “Time to finish the lesson”?
Céline: Oui master Sam.


Sam: Okay, let’s wrap up there. Until the next lesson!
Sylvain: A bientôt!
Céline: Au revoir!
Sam: A la prochaine!


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