cooked goose

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raffavita

Senior Member
italian
Hello,
:)

I'm having problems with this expression. An American woman is chasing a killer and tells a Frenchman: "If he realizes that I'm following him, I'll be a cooked goose, or whatever the say is."

I have the feeling that she's misusing a French say.

Does it remind you of something?

Is there any French say implying that a person is in real danger??

Thank you so much in advance.
Raffuzza
:)
 
  • watergirl

    Senior Member
    English, U.S.A.
    As Angle O. points out, saying your "goose is cooked" is fairly common.
    However, the speaker's use of it here is different, and fairly comical.
    We don't normally refer to ourselves as a "cooked goose" even though we say "my goose is cooked" -- if you see the difference.
    (That is why the speaker follows up with, "whatever the saying is..." because it has come out wrong -- culinary even!) :)
     

    raffavita

    Senior Member
    italian
    Hmm, I know the English expression, but since she's speaking to a French man in her poor French, I wondered if she was using a French equivalent for "cooked goose". The reader is never told when she's speaking French. You have to deduce it from the context. Her French is immediately translated into English.

    Why should she be uncertain as to what the English expression sounds like? That's why I assumed she was speaking French.

    That's weird.
    A similar thing occurred when she used the expression "camel's breath" and her interlocutor corrected it with "hair's breadth" (she was referring to a narrow escaped she experienced). The text is in English, but they were speaking French and she made a mistake. She must have misspelled a French expression, because "camel's breadth" is not commonly used in English.
    However, I still have to figure out what the expression sounded like in French.
    The same here.
    Thank you very much indeed.
    :)
     

    Angle O'Phial

    Senior Member
    USA English
    Sorry, now I'm confused. The text, in English, is of an American speaking to a Frenchman in broken French, and you're trying to reconstruct, from the English text, what she said in French? If so, I'm sure she said something like:

    Je serai une oie cuite, ou quoi que l'on dise

    with a semi-literal translation of the English idiom into French.
     

    raffavita

    Senior Member
    italian
    As Angle O. points out, saying your "goose is cooked" is fairly common.
    However, the speaker's use of it here is different, and fairly comical.
    We don't normally refer to ourselves as a "cooked goose" even though we say "my goose is cooked" -- if you see the difference.
    (That is why the speaker follows up with, "whatever the saying is..." because it has come out wrong -- culinary even!) :)
    Exactly! What really puzzles me is her misuse of an English term she should know perfectly. She is the American one.

    Since the (American) could not write the whole novel in French, she wrote it in English, but I'm pretty sure this kind of misuses implies they're speaking French, actually, and the woman is making mistakes.

    I think it's the other way around. She is deliberately writing "cooked goose" as a bad translation of a French expression.
     
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