Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 7

LEARN

FRENCH
BY PODCAST
AUDIO PODCASTS
FOR LEARNERS
OF FRENCH Lesson
66
AS A FOREIGN
LANGUAGE

“How are you?…”

Plus Publications
Bramley
Douglas Road
Cork
Ireland
(t) 353-(0)21-4847444
(f) 353-(0)21-4847675
(e) editor@learnfrenchbypodcast.com
(i) www.learnfrenchbypodcast.com
Lesson 66 : Thursday, June 21st, 2007
Level : beginner. “How are you ?…”
• “Comment allez-vous ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “Ça va ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “(Pas) très bien.“ : [“(Not) very well.”]
• “Il fait beau.” : [“It’s fine.”]
• tout, toute, tous, toutes : [all, every]
Dialogue

Hello, and welcome back to LFBP. My name is Hugh Nagle and Note
with me is Amélie Verdier. Bonjour Amélie.
Bonjour ! Comment allez-vous ?
[≈ How are you ? (Literally, ‘How are you going ?’)]
It’s been a while since we’ve had a beginner lesson. In this
short lesson, Lesson 66, we’ll see how to ask how someone is Before we can ask questions like ‘Comment allez-
vous ?’, we must familiarise ourselves fully with aller
and we’ll hear a little about the weather, too. Let’s first listen
(to go). Study the present tense, below :
to a short role-play between …
Monsieur Vuillerot aller – to go
je vais
… and tu vas
Madame Domur il / elle / on va
nous allons
vous allez
ils / elles vont
Monsieur Vuillerot Bonjour Madame Domur.
Madame Domur Bonjour Monsieur Vuillerot. past participle : allé
Comment allez-vous ?
Monsieur Vuillerot Très bien, merci. Et vous,
comment allez-vous ? Note
Madame Domur Je vais bien. En plus, il fait beau,
alors, tout va bien. Comment allez-vous ?
Monsieur Vuillerot Oui, c’est vrai qu’il ne pleut pas [≈ How are you ? (Literally, ‘How are you going ?’)]
aujourd’hui.
(un téléphone portable sonne) *OWFSTJPOPGTVCKFDUBOEWFSC
Madame Domur Ah, excusez-moi, c’est mon
portable. Allô ? Ah… Bonjour wBMMF[WPVT
Marie ! Alors, comment ça va? …
Moi, ça va. Oui oui, toute la famille *OWFSUJOHUIFTVCKFDUBOEWFSCHJWFTUIF
*OUFSSPHBUJWF RVFTUJPO
GPSN%POU
va bien. Attends, je ne peux pas GPSHFUUIFSFTBIZQIFO UPP
te parler pour le moment, je te
rappelle plus tard. Ok ? Allez, à plus
tard !

Note
En plus, il fait beau.
Note [= Furthermore, it’s fine.]
… , tout va bien.
Note [= … everything is going well.]
Listen carefully ! The ‘s’ on ‘plus’ is sometimes
pronounced and is sometimes silent. In this case, the
… alors, tout va bien. bon (= good) is an adjective. ‘s’ is pronounced.
[= … so, everything is going bien (= well) is an adverb :
fine/well.]
Il joue bien.
Consider additional examples [= He plays well.] Note
with alors : Elle chante bien.
Alors, tu trouve ça [= She sings well.] En plus, il fait beau.
comment ? [= … it’s fine.]
Where you see [So, how are you finding
this symbol … that ?] The verb faire often means ‘to do’, ‘to make’, etc.
Alors, quoi de neuf ? In relation to the weather, however, it means :
 … it’s your turn
to repeat what
[So, what’s new ?] Note ‘It’s (fine, warm, cold, etc).
you’ve heard.
Alors, tu fais quoi ce week-
Then we’ll end ? C’est vrai que il ne pleut pas aujourd’hui.
repeat once [So, what’re you doing this [= It’s true that it’s not raining today.]
more. weekend ?]

2 © Plus Publications, 2007. All rights reserved.


Lesson 66 : Thursday, June 21st, 2007
Level : beginner. “How are you ?…”
• “Comment allez-vous ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “Ça va ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “(Pas) très bien.“ : [“(Not) very well.”]
• “Il fait beau.” : [“It’s fine.”]
• tout, toute, tous, toutes : [all, every]
Dialogue

One more time, let’s hear this exchange. Note


Monsieur Vuillerot Bonjour Madame Domur. … il ne pleut pas
Madame Domur Bonjour Monsieur Vuillerot. [= it isn’t raining]
Comment allez-vous ?
Monsieur Vuillerot Très bien, merci. Et vous, The verb pleuvoir (= to rain) is invariable. That is, it
does not have a full conjugation like other verbs. We
comment allez-vous ?
find only the ‘il…’ part of the verb.
Madame Domur Je vais bien. En plus, il fait beau,
alors, tout va bien.
Monsieur Vuillerot Oui, c’est vrai qu’il ne pleut
pas aujourd’hui. Note
(un téléphone portable sonne) … mon portable.
Madame Domur Ah, excusez-moi, c’est mon [= my mobile.]
portable. Allô ? Ah… Bonjour
Marie ! Alors, comment ça va? Note that we may also hear ‘mon téléphone
… Moi, ça va. Oui oui, toute portable’. More often than not, however, we find
la famille va bien. Attends, je the shorter form.
ne peux pas te parler pour le
moment, je te rappelle plus
tard. Ok ? Allez, à plus tard ! Note
Allô ?…
[= Hello ?…]
Note Allô is used when saying ‘Hello’ on the telephone,
rather than in general.
+FOFQFVYQBTUFQBSMFS

*DBOUUBMLUPZPV
Note
8FDPVMESFQMBDFAQBSMFS Toute la famille va bien.
XJUIPUIFSJOñOJUJWFTUP [= All [members of] the family are well.]
DSFBUFBSBOHFPGQPTTJCJMJUJFT
Je ne peux pas te | donner des suggestions Note that the singular form of the verb aller is used
| dire que … [= say to you that …] in French, in combination with the singular noun la
| répondre … [= answer you] famille.

Note Note Note


Je te rappelle … Je te rappelle … Attends !
[= I’ll call you back (later).] [= I’ll call you back [= Wait !]
(later).]
The verb appeler means ‘to call’. If we add an ‘r’ to the This is the Imperative (command) form of
beginning of the verb, we get rappeler which means ‘to appeler – to call attendre (= to wait).
call (someone) again’ or ‘call (someone) back’. j’appelle
tu appelles j’attends
Where you see Note, also, in this context the Present tense in French is il / elle / on appelle tu attends
this symbol … used to convey the Future in English : I will call you back (at nous appelons il / elle / on attend
some point in the future). vous appelez nous attendons
 … it’s your turn vous attendez
ils / elle appellent
to repeat what ils / elles attendent
Je te rappelle à huit heures du soir.
you’ve heard.
Then we’ll
[= I’ll call you back at 8 p.m.] Watch it! There is just
Je te rappelle demain. one ‘l’ in the 1st and 2nd past participle : attendu
repeat once
more. [= I’ll call you back tomorrow.] person plural.

© Plus Publications, 2007. All rights reserved. 3


Lesson 66 : Thursday, June 21st, 2007
Level : beginner. “How are you ?…”
• “Comment allez-vous ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “Ça va ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “(Pas) très bien.“ : [“(Not) very well.”]
• “Il fait beau.” : [“It’s fine.”]
• tout, toute, tous, toutes : [all, every]

Now, a basic – but essential – expression is “How are you?” “Comment


Dialogue

allez-vous ?” Note
That is…
Comment allez-vous?  Ça va ?
Comment allez-vous? [≈ How are you ?]

That’s the formal form of the question we might use if The cedilla accent (l’accent cédille) is important and
ensures that – before the vowels a, o and u – the ‘ç’ is
addressing a neighbour we don’t know that well, for pronounced like the English ‘s’, rather than as a ‘k’.
example. If, on the other hand, we were addressing a
friend – someone we did know well – we could ask :
Comment vas-tu?
Comment vas-tu?

Or, simply… “Ça va ?” Note


Ça va?  … comment va-t-elle ?
Ça va? [= … how is she ?]

Finally, if we were asking about someone else – a mutual The function of the -t- is to facilitate pronunciation and
friend called Jacques, for example, we would ask : prevent a ‘collision’ of two vowels. The same applies to the
Et Jacques, il va bien?… ‘il…’ part of the verb :
Et Jacques, il va bien?… Et Daniel, comment va-t-il ?

Supposing the doctor was asking a woman about her


daughter, his question might be :
Et votre fille, Jacqueline, comment va-t-elle?
Et votre fille, Jacqueline, comment va-t-elle?

So, let’s remember these expressions. They rely heavily on Note


the verb “aller” which literally means “to go”.
In response to these questions, various answers are “(Pas)  … votre fille
possible. Amélie, if you are very well, you would say : très bien.” [= … your daughter]
Très bien, merci.
Très bien, merci. Depending on the context, une fille is :
1. a girl, or
2. a daughter.
On the other hand, if things aren’t going so well, you
might say : Listen carefully to the pronunciation ! The double-l in une
Je ne vais pas trop bien. fille sounds like the ‘y’ in the English word ‘yes’.
Je ne vais pas trop bien.

… or, simply :
Pas trop bien.
Pas trop bien. Note
Here we have ‘pas trop bien’. That’s “not too well”. 5PDSFBUFUIFOFHBUJWF
“Not very well”, would be…
Pas très bien. +FOFWBJTQBTUSPQCJFO
Pas très bien. <*NOPU HPJOH
UPPXFMM>
Where you see
<WFSCBMMFS>
this symbol …

 … it’s your turn 5IFOFHBUJWFJO'SFODIJTDSFBUFECZ


to repeat what AXSBQQJOHOFBOEQBTBSPVOEUIFWFSC
you’ve heard.
Then we’ll
repeat once
more.

4 © Plus Publications, 2007. All rights reserved.


Lesson 66 : Thursday, June 21st, 2007
Level : beginner. “How are you ?…”
• “Comment allez-vous ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “Ça va ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “(Pas) très bien.“ : [“(Not) very well.”]
• “Il fait beau.” : [“It’s fine.”]
• tout, toute, tous, toutes : [all, every]

“Il fait beau.”


Dialogue

In our original exchange, Madame Domur said she was Note


very well. In particular, she said : “… and then, the weather
is beautiful, so all is well”. Let’s hear, once again, what she  Il fait beau.
said. First we heard : [= It’s fine.]
En plus, il fait beau.
En plus, il fait beau. Study the following weather-related expressions,
too, also based on the verb faire :
So, in relation to the weather, “it’s beautiful” or “it’s fine” is Il fait mauvais.
simply “il fait beau”. And then, “all is well” is : [= (the opposite of ‘il fait beau’) The weather
Tout va bien. is bad.]
Tout va bien. Il fait chaud.*
[= It’s hot.]
tout / toute Il fait froid.*
“All” or “everything” is … [= It’s cold.]
tout
tout * Note that these expressions apply to the weather.
They are not used when describing objects that are
That’s the masculine form of this word. A little later in the hot or cold. Nor are they used when describing one’s
dialogue, we heard : own physical state.
Toute la famille va bien
Toute la famille va bien

That’s “All the family are well”. In this case, we hear :


Note
toute  Tout va bien.
toute [= Everything / all is (going) well.]

That’s the feminine form of the adjective because we are In fact, there are four variants of tout, depending
talking about all the family and … on the gender (that is, masculine or feminine) and
number (that is, singular or plural) of the noun to
la famille which it refers. Consider additional examples below :
la famille
… avec tout le sucre [m] qu’on trouve dans
… is a feminine word. les aliments de nos jours.
[= … with all the sugar that one finds in food
nowadays.]
… devant toute la classe [f].
[= … in front of the whole class.]
Ma mère va à la messe tous les matins
[m pl].
[= My mother goes to mass every morning.]
Tu vois toutes les cochonneries [f pl] qu’elle
avale ?
[= Do you see all the junk that she eats ?]

Where you see


this symbol …

 … it’s your turn


to repeat what
you’ve heard.
Then we’ll
repeat once
more.

© Plus Publications, 2007. All rights reserved. 5


Lesson 66 : Thursday, June 21st, 2007
Level : beginner. “How are you ?…”
• “Comment allez-vous ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “Ça va ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “(Pas) très bien.“ : [“(Not) very well.”]
• “Il fait beau.” : [“It’s fine.”]
• tout, toute, tous, toutes : [all, every]
Dialogue

In this lesson we’ve concentrated on how to ask how


someone is. But there are other interesting expressions
and vocabulary, too. You can find that information in the
accompanying Lesson Guide, available from our website
at www.learnfrenchbypodcast.com. Amélie, let’s listen to
this dialogue one last time to reinforce everything we’ve Note
heard today.
 Allez, à plus tard !
[≈ Ok then, until (I talk to you) later !]

Monsieur Vuillerot Bonjour Madame Domur. Grammatically speaking, Allez is the Imperative
Madame Domur Bonjour Monsieur Vuillerot. (command) form of the verb aller. Literally, it is the
Comment allez-vous ? form of the verb we will use when ordering someone
Monsieur Vuillerot Très bien, merci. Et vous, to … ‘Go!’
comment allez-vous ? However, Allez is very frequently used when
Madame Domur Je vais bien. En plus, il fait beau, ‘wrapping up’ a conversation in which case it equates
alors, tout va bien. to the English ‘Ok, then…’ or ‘Right, then …’.
Monsieur Vuillerot Oui, c’est vrai qu’il ne pleut
pas aujourd’hui. Of course, we’ll hear it around us at a football match,
(un téléphone portable sonne) too, where French supporters will vociferously
encourage their players with shouts of “Allez!
Madame Domur Ah, excusez-moi, c’est mon Allez!…”
portable. Allô ? Ah… Bonjour
Marie ! Alors, comment ça va?
… Moi, ça va. Oui oui, toute
la famille va bien. Attends, je
ne peux pas te parler pour le Note
moment, je te rappelle plus  Je ne peux pas …
tard. Ok ? Allez, à plus tard ! [= I can’t …]

That’s it for now. Until next time… This is the 1st person singular of the Present
A la prochaine. tense of pouvoir (= to be able). Study the full
conjugation of the verb, below :

pouvoir – to be able
je peux
tu peux
il / elle / on peut
nous pouvons
vous pouvez
ils / elles peuvent

past participle : pu

Note
 …, à plus tard !
[≈ …, until (I talk to you) later !]
Where you see
this symbol … Consider the following, also :
À ce soir !
 … it’s your turn [= Until (I talk to you / see you) this
to repeat what evening !]
you’ve heard.
Then we’ll À demain !
repeat once [= Until (I talk to you / see you) tomorrow !]
more.

6 © Plus Publications, 2007. All rights reserved.


Lesson 66 : Thursday, June 21st, 2007
Level : beginner. “How are you ?…”
• “Comment allez-vous ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “Ça va ?“ : [“How are you ?“]
• “(Pas) très bien.“ : [“(Not) very well.”]
• “Il fait beau.” : [“It’s fine.”]
• tout, toute, tous, toutes : [all, every]
Dialogue

Vocab extra  !
• bonjour...................hello
• aller........................to go
• comment…?.........how…?
• vous........................you
• très.........................very
• bien........................well
• merci......................thank you
• plus, en ~...............furthermore
• alors........................so, then
• tout.........................all, everything
• vrai.........................true
• c’est........................it’s
• oui..........................yes
• pleuvoir..................to rain
• aujourd’hui.............today
• portable (m)...........mobile (phone)
• sonner....................to ring
• mon........................my
If you understood our lesson, then you should be able to translate … • allô.........................hello [on
telephone]
• famille (f)...............family
Now it’s your turn …

• attendre..................to wait
• pouvoir...................to be able
1. And Claire… how is she? • parler......................to speak, to
2. Yes… they’re well. [Suppose you’re talking about David and Diane.] talk
• pour........................for
3. He can’t talk to you for the moment.
• moment (m)...........moment
4. They can’t talk to you for the moment. • rappeler..................to call again
5. It’s warm today. • tard.........................late
6. It’s raining. • plus.........................more
• prochaine, à la ~....until next time
7. He’ll call you back later.
• jouer.......................to play
8. They’ll call you back later. • trouver....................to find
• quoi........................what
See how you have fared in the exercise above by clicking on the graphic. • neuf [adj]................new
(Note that we wait a few days after a lesson has been released before posting • chanter...................to sing
the answers to exercises on our website.) • répondre.................to answer
click!
• chaud......................hot
• froid........................cold
• sucre (m)................sugar
• aliment (m)............item of food
• jour, de nos ~s........nowadays
• devant....................in front of
• classe (f).................class
• messe (f)................mass
• matin (m)...............morning
• cochonneries (f pl)..junk (food)
Any questions? … click!
Got an idea for a lesson? … click! • avaler......................to swallow
• voir.........................to see

Please submit them to us ! Tell us what you’d like us to discuss.

Any comments? … click!


Seen a typo? … click!

We’d like to hear what you have to say. Please let us know where.

© Plus Publications, 2007. All rights reserved. 7