color me surprised!

Discussion in 'French-English Vocabulary / Vocabulaire Français-Anglais' started by SunnyS, May 27, 2011.

  1. Any suggestions for translating this into French, in keeping the irony of the English original? Is there a standard phrase in French?
  2. pyan

    pyan Senior Member

    Vendée, France
    English, UK, London
    Please would you give us the context? The original expression may not be understood by all Anglophones.
  3. misterk Moderator

    If it helps, here's an explanation of the phrase "color me + adjective," excerpted from a thread a few years ago:
    The idiom comes from children's coloring books with black and white pictures to color with paint or crayons. It's not a very common expression in a metaphorical sense, although there was a pop song in which the singer invited the listener to color her in a variety of undesirable moods: sad, lonely etc.
    "Color me confused," for example, means "I am confused (and I want you to know that)."
  4. wildan1

    wildan1 Moderando ma non troppo (French-English, CC Mod)

    Je suis surpris ; c'est le moins qu'on puisse dire ! is the sense of this, but it lacks the cleverness of Color me + adjective...
  5. Nicomon

    Nicomon Senior Member

    Français, Québec ♀
    Bonjour ou bonsoir,

    Ça ne fonctionne pas bien avec « surpris(e) », mais je ne crois pas me tromper en disant que "color me + adjective" peut parfois se traduire par :
    appelez-moi xyx Voir ici
    Last edited: May 29, 2011
  6. Color me surprised! I thought this was a very common expression, but apparently, by your comments, it isn't.

    Anyways, before this thread, I had never seen "color me surprised" having any other meaning than a very sarcastic "I'm shocked, shocked to find out bla bla"

    It means you are NOT surprised or shocked AT ALL and you are being ironic about it.

    However, after reading your comments above and doing a search on the Internet, it became apparent to me that the phrase can be used without irony, just as other similar constructions with "color me + whatever."

    The ironic version is in line with saying, "aren't we surprised?" (NOT).

    example without irony:

    example with irony:

    example 2 - ironic:
    Well, color me surprised! A man who had been accused 9 times of corruption was finally found guilty the 10th time around.

    My question about translating the ironic version still remains.

    Here is my petite try:

    Oh la la, je suis tellement surprise !

    Oh la la, quelle surprise !

    (I would prefer a phrase that refers to the person being surprised, rather than a simply impersonal "what a surprise!")
  7. Lacuzon

    Lacuzon Senior Member

    French - France

    In order to translate the ironic version, I would say
    Pour un peu, ça m'étonnerait !
    Je ne m'y serais pas attendu !
    Ah bon ? Première nouvelle !
    Last edited: May 28, 2011
  8. Nicomon

    Nicomon Senior Member

    Français, Québec ♀
    I'm afraid that I missed the word "ironic" in the opening post. :eek:

    Am I right thinking that "color me surprised!", when said ironically. is similar to "Well, duh!", "No kidding" or the less elegant "No shit"?

    If so, then I suggest : Non! Sans blague? Franchement, ça m'étonne! :rolleyes: You may also find a few ideas in this thread.
  9. wildan1

    wildan1 Moderando ma non troppo (French-English, CC Mod)

    That's good for the ironic version of surprised, Nico, but the expression, as Sunny's research suggested, is used more broadly to admit one's (usually emotional) reaction to something.

    Example: I recently took a trip to Europe and posted on Facebook a photo of the TGV Eurostar in the London station as I was about to board it to go to Paris.

    Comment posted by a friend back in the US: Color me jealous!
  10. pointvirgule

    pointvirgule Senior Member

    Mtl, QC
    langue française
    Since color me + adj. is not ironic per se, it's the context that will make it ironic or not.

    In an ironic sense:
    Well, color me surprised! → Eh bien, vous m'en direz tant ! / tu m'en diras tant !
  11. No, I think you are wrong concerning two important aspects.

    First, "Well, duh!" and "No shit" are aggressive or crass. So, in that respect, they are not similar to "color me surprised." Second, the meaning is also different. "color me surprised" is an irony at being surprised, not that something must be that way and the person must see something in a particular way, like "Well, duh!" . "No kidding" is also more informal than "color me surprised."

    In the last example I gave, a guy could be accused 15 times and never be found guilty. There's nothing to say that it must happen on the tenth time. Therefore, there would be no reason to reply "Well, duh," it makes no sense.

    I guess in some contexts some of your above suggestions could work to substitute "color me surprised" about something being obvious, but in others, they wouldn't.
  12. Nicomon

    Nicomon Senior Member

    Français, Québec ♀
    Thank you Sunny.

    I must have misread this comment of your's :
    I understood from Wildan's reply that my suggestions were OK for the ironic version. So now, I'm somewhat confused.
    I wasn't entirely sure about Well, duh!(which seems to be interpreted many different ways) but I thought that "No kidding" was going in the right direction.

    In my opinion, pointvirgule's suggestion works fine. And I also like keumark's « Ça c'est un scoop! », in this post from the thread that I linked to in post #8.
    If that's still not it... I give up trying. ;)
    Dans ce cas, je dirais en français : Je suis pas jalouse du tout!... ce qui bien sûr voudrait dire tout à fait le contraire.
    Ou bien : J'en suis verte de jalousie!
    Last edited: May 29, 2011
  13. Dixxy

    Dixxy Senior Member

    Sans doute aussi : "Tiens donc...!" (ton ironique et petit sourire entendu (knowing smile) )

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