My daughter Jackie turned seven ("l'âge de raison") on Saturday. She is back today with her column "Thoughts of a Little Girl from France" (in French and English).
un écart (ay-kar) noun, masculine
1. distance apart, gap
faire le grand écart = to do the splits
faire un écart = to step aside
un écart de conduite = a lapse of conduct, misdemeanor
écarts de jeunesse = youthful indiscretions
un écart de l'imagination = a flight of the imagination
se tenir à l'écart = to keep oneself apart, aloof
habiter à l'écart = to live in a remote, lonely area
un écart d'âge = an age gap
un grand écart = (fig) a balancing act
un écart de langage = a rude or offensive word or phrase = a "gap" in language
Ecarte-toi des lieux où l'on parle ou trop fort ou trop bas.
Distance yourself from places where people talk too loud or too low.
Pensées d'une Petite Fille de France
"Le Grand Ecart"
L'autre jour dans la salle de gym on a fait la danse et on a fait le grand écart.
Pour faire le grand écart il faut toucher par terre tout la longueur des jambes. Ce n'est pas du tout facile car ça tire dans les jambes.
Dans mon cours de danse, il y a Juliette qui le fait bien le grand écart mais aussi Bérénice. Pour certains, ce n'est pas évident de faire le grand écart. (Par exemple, pour moi et pour Cassandra, ce n'est pas encore ça.)
* * * In English * * *
The other day in the gym we danced and did the splits.
To do the splits, the length of one's legs must touch the ground. It isn't easy at all because it really pulls (with)in the legs.
In my dance class, there's Juliette who does the splits well, but so does Bérénice. For certain people, it isn't easy to do the splits. (For example, for me and for Cassandra. We're not there yet.)
Post note: Jackie became flustered while dictating today's story to me. Apparently my French pronunciation, for even the simplest of phrases, is ultra null. The following scene took place:
Me: (reading back story, and the phrase 'un grand écart') "Ewn grahnd ay kart"
Jackie: "Ça veut rien dire!" (that doesn't mean anything!) "It's 'uhn grah taykar'!"
Me (re-reading story) "Ewn grahnd ay kart"
Jackie: "Oh la la!!!! C'est "uhn grah TAYKAR!"
Read more about my daughter, Jackie, in the book Words in a French Life
A Message from Kristi
Thank you for reading my language journal. In 2002 I left my job at a vineyard and became self-employed in France. "French Word-A-Day" has been my full-time occupation ever since. Ongoing support from readers like you helps keep this site ad-free and allows me to focus on the creative process of writing. My wish is to continue offering posts that are educational, insightful, and heart-warming. If my work has touched you in any way, please consider supporting it via a blog donation of any amount.
Ways to contribute:
1. Send a check
2. Paypal or credit card
3. A bank transfer, a great way to send your donation as there are no transaction fees.
Or purchase our online memoir, The Lost Gardens