répondre du tac-au-tac

Discussion in 'French-English Vocabulary / Vocabulaire Français-Anglais' started by carokh, Feb 24, 2005.

  1. carokh New Member

    Paris
    France/French
    Hello there,

    still hunting for fitting colloquial English translations, here's my plea for helpful suggestions:

    Comment traduire: elle a repondu du tac-au-tac ?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Wordsmyth

    Wordsmyth Senior Member

    Location: Mostly SW France
    Native language: English (BrE)
    Salut carokh,

    "She gave tit for tat" or "She replied tit for tat" or "She gave as good as she got": these contain the idea of "une riposte à la hauteur de ...", but don't cover the rapidity element of 'tac-au-tac'. For that you could say "She replied in a flash" or " ... like a flash".

    I suppose you could combine the two into: "Like a flash, she replied tit for tat", but that's getting a bit heavy (Who said English is more concise than French?!).

    Also watch out for cheeky grins if you use the "tit ..." expression (especially in Oz?!). ;)
     
  3. Wordsmyth

    Wordsmyth Senior Member

    Location: Mostly SW France
    Native language: English (BrE)
    By the way, carokh, can you help me with my 'valoriser' question? See my post of earlier today.
     
  4. RODGER

    RODGER Senior Member

    France
    UK ENGLISH
    Maybe, "she replied straight off"

    Rodger
     
  5. Gil Senior Member

    Français, Canada
    Hi.
    You concentrate on the speed of the answer. It also has a "blow for blow" aspect. Cyrano called himself "un grand riposteur du tac au tac" and the conversation du "tac au tac" might be compared to fencing.

    Sorry I did not find anything yet.
     
  6. RODGER

    RODGER Senior Member

    France
    UK ENGLISH
    Ok for the onomatopoeia "she rapped back"

    Rodger
     
  7. Jabote Senior Member

    Mirabel, Quebec, Canada
    French from France
    She snapped back
     
  8. Login

    Login Senior Member

    Belgium
    Belgium - French
    Doesn't "to snap" have a negative (See aggressive...) connotation?
     
  9. Benjy

    Benjy Senior Member

    Milton Keynes, UK
    English - English
    yeahh... normally it does. maybe she retorted?
     
  10. Jabote Senior Member

    Mirabel, Quebec, Canada
    French from France
    Retorted is definitely better than snapped back. Indeed snapped back has an aggressive connotation... too strong, forget it...
     
  11. Jabote Senior Member

    Mirabel, Quebec, Canada
    French from France
    Benjy, I DID snap back at abcdef... and I meant to...[​IMG]
     
  12. Benjy

    Benjy Senior Member

    Milton Keynes, UK
    English - English
    lol. i know you did :p

    getting back to the discussion in hand :D would "a rapide fire exchange" be appropriate for la conversation du tic-au-tac? i wouldn't know how to work that into the original question though :/
     
  13. RODGER

    RODGER Senior Member

    France
    UK ENGLISH
    No, he rapped back, because "exchange is 2 people whereas it's only her that is rapping back (though I may be a bit too enamoured of my own version)

    Rodger the rapper
     
  14. Nico5992 Senior Member

    Paris, France
    France (French)
    By the way, Benjy, on dit "du tac au tac", unlike the clock that makes "tic-tac" :)
     
  15. carokh New Member

    Paris
    France/French
    Yes, that is where the trick lies: how to convey both notions of "responding rapidly and with equal wit", a bit like in fencing, tennis or table tennis (poc-poc!). And my ambition was also to find, if not an onomatopoeia, at least a catchy colloquialism..!!:D This is when I wish that we could become a bit creative and invent a new phrase (sacrilege!:p ).
     
  16. carokh New Member

    Paris
    France/French
    Aie aie aie, Wordsmyth, you put me on the spot! Although I read the posts on that thread with delectation, I'm afraid I feel out of my depth trying to improve on them, sorry!:eek:
     
  17. semiller Senior Member

    Dallas, Texas
    USA-English
    This expression "répondre du tac au tac" was used in the film La Môme (La Vie en Rose). The subtitled translation was to "answer at whatever comes to mind." Do you all think this was an accurate translation? As we all know, subtitled translations used in movies can be off. Merci bien!
     
  18. Gil Senior Member

    Français, Canada
    It was off:
     
  19. david314

    david314 Senior Member

    Clayton, Missouri
    American English
    Perhaps: She shot back..
     
  20. lentulax Senior Member

    Cumbria , England
    UK English
    Fencing , did someone mention ?

    'Her riposte was immediate.' (even 'instantaneous'!)
     
  21. bookworm7 New Member

    Français, English - Canada
    Would "she answered without missing a beat" work? It conveys the idea that she answered quickly and - to me, anyway - it makes it sound as though she answered with a clever retort.
     
  22. david314

    david314 Senior Member

    Clayton, Missouri
    American English
    Well done. :thumbsup:

    tit-for-tat -selon Merriam-Webster's F.E.

    Note: I usually hear: *to pay someone back tit-for-tat

    *reciprocal actions
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2008
  23. Gil Senior Member

    Français, Canada
    Utilisé récemment sur YouTube...
     
  24. Transfer_02 Senior Member

    Espoo, Finland
    English - British
    Répond du tac au tac le jeune.

    The young lad replied off pat.

    ...might work, but it's a slightly out-dated expression (and Br Eng).
     

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