From A to Z All These Little French and American Words…

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From April 1st to April 30th, I will write every day, but Sundays, following the alphabetical order, about one of these little French and American words that don’t always mean the same thing whether they are used in France or the USA.

Due to the predominance of American words used in France in comparison to the number of French words used in the USA, I won’t always be able to alternate between the two languages. In some cases I found more than one word, so I will sometimes offer you two for the price of one.

On the other side, I’m still missing a few words for a few letters.

If anyone is willing to help out, it would be awesome. I’m looking either for a French word used in the USA or an American word used in France that starts with the following letters:

J, K, Q, U, Y, X, Z.

If I cannot find any good match, I’ll go ahead with an idiom, different from the ones I selected for the 2015 A to Z Challenge.

As always I welcome your comments, suggestions and support.

The more the merrier.

I’m also looking forward to seeing what you are up to for this 2016 A to Z challenge.




Du 1er au 30 avril j’écrirai un billet chaque jour, sauf le dimanche, suivant l’ordre alphabétique, à propos de l’un de ces petits mots français et américains qui ne veulent pas toujours dire ce qu’ils sont supposés signifier qu’ils soient utilisés en France ou aux Etats Unis.

Pour ce nouveau challenge il me sera parfois difficile de publier alternativement en français et en anglais, du à la proéminence de mots américains dans la langue française en comparaison avec le nombre de mots français utilisés aux Etats Unis. Dans certains cas, cependant, j’ai trouvé plusieurs exemples pour la même lettre. Je vous en offrirai donc parfois deux pour le prix d’un.

Par contre il me manque encore quelques mots pour les lettres suivantes: J, K, Q, U, Y, X, Z.

Si vous voulez m’aider à trouver soit un mot français utilisé aux USA ou un mot américain utilisé en France, je vous en remercie par avance.

Si je ne trouve rien je choisirai une expression idiomatique comme je l’ai fait en 2015 pour le Challenge de A à Z.

Comme toujours je suis ouverte à vos commentaires, suggestions et encouragement.

Plus on est de fous plus on rit.

Je suis impatiente de lire ce que vous aurez vous aussi concocté pour le challenge 2016.


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  1. Looking forward to this! I loved your idioms last year 🙂

    • Thank you so much! Last year was easier in some way, but I wanted something new and still within the French American niche. Looking forward to seeing then!

  2. I am looking forward to this one, it’s a fascinating topic!

  3. I enjoyed your answer to the challenge last year. I’m looking forward to this.

    I don’t know if the word: “Quai” suits your need. I first heard it from a British friend of mine and when I looked it up, I discovered that it was of French origin (if Internet dictionaries are to be trusted). I don’t really hear it used much in this country, but then, I don’t live near the shore so maybe I’m just missing it.

    • Ah! That’s a good word in both languages, but they mean the same thing, right? As in a quai at the train station?
      I’m trying to find the same words that have a different meaning whether they are used in France or the US.
      I’ll check it out, though.
      Also thank you for your visit and support. You know what a challenge is, right? 😊

  4. Wonderful! Good luck Evelyne. I look forward to your posts.

  5. Un excellent rendez-nous que voilà

  6. I look forward to reading

  7. This sounds like fun! Looking forward to it.

  8. Behind the Story says:

    This should be challenging. We’re sure to learn something new. Looking forward to it.

    • Thank you, Nicki. Hope you’ll enjoy. It’s a good exercise for me to go back and forth between the two languages I speak on a daily basis but not often at the same time. For April it will be in both French and American English, so readers from both countries and beyond can follow. See you soon on your blog.

  9. I wish I might help but sadly I’ll just read with interest good luck finding your examples

  10. Good luck with your posts – sorry I have no idea about any suggestions for the letters you are missing. Hope you have a great AtoZ.
    Tasha’s Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

  11. I think I found one for Q. Quartet (or quartette). In America it only denotes a singing group of four (traditionally men), but its French origin means “set of four” which could be a group of anything, right?

    For J how about “je ne sais quoi” but the meaning of the phrase might be too similar.

    Fun challenge.

    • I really appreciate your feedback, Jen. The challenge I’m trying to accomplish is to find words which are either from France or the USA and are used I both countries with a different meaning.
      For example: smoking which in the USA means to smoke means tuxedo in France (originally from smoking jacket). So unfortunately quartet and je ne sais quoi mean the same in both countries. But again I really appreciate your time and support. I hope to see you again in April. 😊

  12. I love all things French (and my a-z challenge posts will reflect that…) so I greatly anticipate this series!

  13. So excited for your posts again this year. I love the opportunity to read bilingual material.


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