se foutre de la , ta gueule

Discussion dans 'French-English Vocabulary / Vocabulaire Français-Anglais' démarrée par now_in_france, 8 février 2007.

  1. now_in_france New Member

    United States English
    I heard the expression, "se foutre de la/ta gueule" used today. The person explaining it to me told me that it means the same thing as "se moquer", but is obviously more impolite. My question is twofold:

    1.) How is it actually used in a sentence. For example, would you say:
    Je me fous de ta gueule = I am making fun of you

    2.) Is it de LA gueule OR de TA gueule?

    Merci d'avance pour toute votre aide.
  2. domtw Member

    The verbal expression is :
    "se foutre de la gueule de quelqu'un"

    Different possibilities:
    Je me fous de ta gueule = I am making fun of you
    Je me fous de sa gueule = I am making fun of him/her
    Je me fous de votre gueule = I am making fun of you
    Je me fous de la gueule de Pierre = I am making fun of Pierre
  3. RuK Senior Member

    Outside Paris
    English/lives France
    But the most common usage of all is

    "Mais tu te fous de ma gueule, ou quoi?"

    It's a semi-threatening phrase, like "are you dissing me?" and starts a lot of fights.
  4. pieanne

    pieanne Senior Member

    Nice Hinterland
    I understand the expression more like "are you kidding me"?... Please tell me if I'm wrong!
  5. GEmatt

    GEmatt Senior Member

    La Côte, Switzerland
    English/BE, Français/CH, Deutsch/CH (rustier & rustier)
    This is also how I understand it. "Are you taking the piss?", in BE.
  6. ascoltate

    ascoltate Senior Member

    Montréal, QC
    U.S.A. & Canada, English
    "to give (someone) shit" seems like a good AE translation...
  7. SFguy

    SFguy Senior Member

    San Francisco
    USA, English
    My impression is that "foutre de ta gueule" is said often and can have a lighter or heavier meaning, depending on the situation.

    Sometimes, it's like "you're putting me on" or "you're kidding me?" in the sense of jouer avec quelqu'un or se moquer.

    But then there are situations plus grave: "you're screwing with me?", "you're trying to screw with my head? Or stronger, "you're trying to fuck with me?!" (plutot newyorkais). Physical violence may be imminent...

    I would make a distinction betwen "giving someone shit" vs. "screwing with me"--in that "giving someone shit" implies something more specific, usually criticism. E.g., his mother is overly critical of her son; she gives him shit every time he comes home from school." That's not quite the same as saying she's screwing with him, or screwing with his head, or in any way se moque de lui.

  8. mukhs Senior Member

    Canadian English
    I think "you fucking with me?" might be the best
  9. pepskrik Senior Member

    france / francais
    I allow myself to butt in because in my humble opinion , "screwing with me" or "screwing with my head" or other phrases along these lines don't really convey the idea of " se foutre de quelqu 'un ou se moquer de quelqu un " but more " est ce que tu me cherches " ou more vulgar "est ce que tu cherches la merde "
  10. SFguy

    SFguy Senior Member

    San Francisco
    USA, English
    Glad you posted. I didn't know about the use of cherche la merde. I'm wondering now is that more like saying in English, hey you're just trying to stir up shit, i.e., "asking for trouble", or trying to provoke someone?

    Re se foutre de quelqu'un being translated asscrew or fuck with someone: at least in American English, we might substitute screw instead of fuck depending on who we're talking to. Sometimes it's a way to say the same thing when the word fuck can not be said or written (for whatever reason).

    Do you feel se foutre de quelqu'un or an expression like tu te fous de ma gueule is always very strong, or is it said frequently enough that it's not always intended to be truly aggressive, and varies with the situation?
  11. erosoft New Member

    There's another situation, maybe more serious, where the expression "se foutre de la gueule" can be used. It can indeed qualify the behaviour of someone who, in the long-term, is putting someone else in the situation where it becomes hard to find out what is true and what is wrong, and what are his or her actual intentions.

    In that specific case, it is really difficult to nail the sense of the phrase, and even harder to find an accurate translation. It cannot be translated by "making fun of someone" or "laugh at" or "kidding", because there is neither 'fun' nor 'laughing' involved. But it is not exactly "fucking with" or "screwing with", because the intentions behind that behaviour remain unclear, and because it doesn't involve the same level of violence.

    Maybe the best translation in that case is "messing with", because of its relative imprecision, although I do not think it faithfully renders the level of criticism (though unclear) involved by 'se foutre de ta gueule' there. The thing is that saying "se foutre de ta gueule" in that case does not make any sense, and does not bring any new element of interpretation to the situation. It is just a way of putting the blame on someone's behaviour, without even being certain to understand why that behaviour is to blame.


    ME: So, how is it going with Robert?
    HER: I don't know. He keeps calling and sending me cute texts, but then in the last minute he always cancels our dates. I don't get it.
    ME: Bah, I think he's messing with you. [ie. 'Je pense qu'il se fout de ta gueule.']
  12. Chris' Spokesperson Senior Member

    English - Ireland
    ME: Bah, I think he's fucking you around.

    Ou, si on ne veux pas être vulgaire, I think he's messing you around.
  13. peek-a-boo New Member

    US English
    Hey there!

    I think you can also say "to make a fool out of someone"
  14. Aoyama Senior Member

    川崎市、巴里 (黎)
    français Clodoaldien
    Many meanings, for sure, the above are all correct.
    To go back to the initial question:
    "ta gueule" (declined) has been explained already, you can also have :
    . se foutre de la gueule des gens
    . se foutre de la gueule du monde
    a bit less common : se foutre de la gueule du peuple
    and, depending on context :
    . se foutre de la gueule du patron / des employés / des autorités etc

    Sometimes the expression "foutage de gueule" is used (c'est un vrai foutage de gueule, cette affaire).
  15. sctroyenne New Member

    San Francisco, CA, USA
    English - United States
    I know this has been a while but some more terms in English that express this sense can be "playing someone" as in "I think he's just playing you" which is manipulating a significant other often to cheat on them or just to hook up by letting them believe you're in a relationship.

    In addition to "messing with" someone there's also "messing with s.o.'s head" and I'd say "screwing with" and "fucking with" can also be substituted here (but not in polite company).

    For really severe, abusive manipulation, the kind that makes you question your own perception of reality there's "gaslighting" after the play/movie "The Gaslight" (with Ingrid Bergman).
  16. voltarivs New Member

    French - France
    Ooooooooooooor one could just say: i'm fuckin' witchu. (slang chosen, it's like the youth are talking nowadays, let's remain in the Zeitgeist huh, guys)

    Ooooooooooooor one could just simply say in commons terms: I'm (just/simply) pulling your leg !

    And there you go.
    Although i really enjoyed all this brainstorming about this whole 'se foutre de ta gueule' concept. :D
  17. voltarivs New Member

    French - France
    Totally. So many use of that expression.
    Me, i just enjoy se foutre de la gueule du monde by responding 4 years later. See ? :D

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