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  5. "Tu veux être mon petit copai…

"Tu veux être mon petit copain ?"

Translation:Do you want to be my boyfriend?

December 22, 2013



Do you want to be my boyfriend? LOL! That's not flirting, that's desperation!


not necessarily, some girls don't want to lose the man they craving for.


I wish life was this easy


I spent, 30 lingots on this sigh


To be fair, theres not much else to spend lingots on. But I agree, this is pretty useless.


Yeah it is useless lol


No it's not useless It's teaching you french at least


(and it's also very amusing)


There isn't much you can spend it on anyway and you earn them pretty easily so honestly I'm not bothered lol

Some sentences really crack me up in this bonus skill so it's worth it for me xD


Yeah, that one about living in another's shoes... I wonder if these are actual pick up lines in France or Quebec, like something of "Are you from Tennessee because you're the only ten I see" here in cringe The States. (Yes, I dislike it when people refer to the USA as "The States". Fight me, every international traveler ever.)


The States the States the States (couldn't resist it)


Is there any difference between "petit ami" and "petit copain" ?


"copain" is more familiar than "ami".


hi, would you say 'z' in 'vous' here? merci


If I understand what you're asking, you wouldn't use 'vous' in this sentence because you're being very familiar. So even though 'vous' can be used when speaking to one person, it's more formal - it doesn't fit with what's happening here. (maybe you're hearing the word 'veux', 'want' and thinking 'vous'?)


or sorry, I meant to ask if a French person would pronounce the 'z' sound in the word 'veux' here (before etre), apologies for causing confusion :)


I do not agree. This liaison is optional, theoretically, but the sound EU-Ê is ugly, even if young people use it easily.

So, for a better flow, please say veux-Z-être.



So both "petit ami" and "petit copain" mean boyfriend, but one is more "familiar" than the other?? Seems weird to have different levels of familiarity at that point..


You want to be my little matey

--> I'm stupid -_-


That's honestly kind of cute. Would work on me.


non, c'est beau


A friend who lives in French Guiana just told me that the right form for the french sentence is: "Est-ce que tu veux être mon petit copain?"


That's one way yes. Leaving the 'est-ce que' off the beginning is still done, but you have to raise the pitch of your voice at the end of the sentence to indicate it's a question.


Btw, beware: I'm pretty sure copain just means flatmate in Swiss French. :)


Yes, copain/copine=friend (informal/familiar) in French, but petit copain/petite copine=boyfriend/girlfriend (informal/familiar) in French, that is "little friend"=boyfriend/girlfriend.


With his sexy French accent, I would happily be his boyfriend!


Yes please, when you ask like that, how can I refuse?!


This is great! Totally gonna use this while talking to my friends (they speak fluent French soo)


Is "copain" genderless? "Boyfriend" wouldn't apply to me.


un copain - une copine


Is there any difference between using "veux-tu etre mon petit copain?" and "tu veux etre mon petit copain?" is one more formal than the other? I am referring to the "veux-tu" vs. "tu veux" as part of a question, not the formality of the boyfriend question :-)


Whenever there is a Verb-Subject inversion, the question is formal: "veux-tu" is formal.

"tu veux être mon petit copain ?" has the form of a statement and only a question mark at the end and this is the informal way of asking the question, mostly in speech.

There is another "standard" way of asking this question: "est-ce que tu veux être mon petit copain ? " which is used both in writing and in speech.


A propos de vos commentaires, oui je me rends compte de l'importance de l'expression "est- ce que " aussi dans la conversation en français. Les français l'utilise toujours quand je parle avec eux. (Au début de mes études en français il y a longtemps, je pensais alors que c'est très exotique. C'était ma première réaction comme étudiant anglophone, quand le prof de français a enseigné ce sujet grammatical. Donc, c'était étonnant pour moi quand j'ai découvert l'utilisation fréquente de ces termes "est-ce que "même dans la conversation quotidienne. ) Maintenant, je suis en train de faire une révision de la langue française. Merci beaucoup pour votre temps.


You're welcome!


Ok someone please translate this to english :(


What's the difference in pronunciation between "copain" and "copine"?


Please try them on forvo.com


Tu veux être ma petite copine ?

This accepts: 'Would you be my girlfriend?' but not 'will you be my girlfriend?'

Tu veux être mon petit copain ? This accepts: 'Will you be my boyfriend?' but not 'Would you be my boyfriend?'

Any insight as to why?


Probably due to different tenses; "will" (future) and "would" (present).


In 1930, my father told me they even said "Voulez vous couchez avec moi" LOL


So one pronounces the final "e" sound in "être"? It seems quite strong in this sentence but not when I hover my cursor over the individual word.


Yes, like a small "euh" because it is placed in front of a consonant and that 'êTRMon' would be difficult to say.

In front of a vowel sound (ex: être une...) you would just link TR with Une 'êTRUne'.


Why isn't petit translated to English small ect?


Because it's an idiom petit copain or petite copine = boyfriend or girlfriend. Literal translations do not always translate meaning. English is chock full of idioms, more than you can throw a stick at.


Petit Copain = Boyfriend It is not enough to say "copain"?


No, 'copain' means friend who happens to be male. 'petit copain' is boyfriend.


I wrote, "Do you want to be my little boyfriend?" and it was marked as wrong. I can only assume that "petit + copain" = "boyfriend". What does "copain" mean on its own if it is ever used that way?


Friend, it's a synonym of 'ami'


Is there anyone in France above lets say 12yo who actually would use this? I really doubt your 'petit copain' will get any action if you ask a girl "Tu veux être mon petite copine?"


I agree, all the more because it would be "ma petite copine".


A propos de la locution "ma petite copaine", il s'agit du language familier, n'est pas? En fait, les mots "copain" ou "copine" appartiennent au language familier. Donc, il est évident qu'on apprend chez Duo des locutions du language familier. Alors voilà la justification des traductions familières, étant donné ce contexte. C'est- à- dire, vous devriez accepter les traductions anglaises, dans ce cas, qui correspondent au langage familier. Thus, pursuant to the informal context and vocabulary of the original French sentence in question here, you ought to accept a colloquial and equivalent English translation. And such a translation can and, often should, include proper English contractions like "should've" , "could've" and "would've" , among several others.


Once again, the translation should accept an informal, uninverted sentence, given the informal context here. (I even used the informal "you wanna" instead of the more formal "you want to" to emphasize that point.)


That's the point exactly. Non-inverted questions in English are meant to emphasize surprise or disbelief or to invite your counterpart to confirm what you have understood. Yet, in spoken French, it is just the most usual way of asking questions (no disbelief, no surprise, no confirmation expected).

"wanna" and "gonna" are not proper English, so such language should never be accepted on any Duolingo course.


Such a fine distinction is not as clear as it once was in English. Nowadays, especially in emails and online chat, like in French, regular word order is used with a question mark in English informal conversation without necessarily denoting "surprise" , "disbelief" or an attempt to get confirmation of what was said. Therefore, regular word order followed by a question mark should be an acceptable translation. Re "wanna", "shoulda" and "coulda" , these informal words are commonly used at least in American colloquial speech even by "educated" speakers. (Of course some still consider those words "ungrammatical" or substandard. They are, however, colloquial. Therefore, they should not be banned.) En ce qui concerne la langue française, j'ai lu vos commentaires sur la formulation de la question familière en français. Oui, j'emploi souvent l'ordre régulier de la phrase pour poser une question, naturellement, en changeant l'intonation. Ça me plaît beaucoup, car c'est simple et utile pour la communication.


Wanna, shoulda and coulda are fine in informal speech, but they not are not actual words in standard written speech - nor are coz (because), wouldja (would you), etc. They are ways to represent in writing how people speak without using clear diction. Similarly, in French people very commonly say T'es instead of Tu es, and you see that in writing when an author is trying to represent everyday speech. You also see it in texts, etc and online comments, but Duo does not accept it because it teaches standard French, not street slang.

We are all welcome to suggest alternate answers, but everything has to be entered into the database by the folks at Duo, so if our personal choice isn't there it either means that they haven't gotten to it yet or decided it's not appropriate. If you make a formal suggestion, they will usually let you know.


I certainly would not recommend using "wanna" , "coulda", "shoulda" and other such colloquialisims in a formal setting. (It wouldn't be a good idea to talk that way during a job interview.) Nevertheless, within the context of English language instruction, it would be good for English language students to be exposed to such colloquialisms just for practical communication purposes. (That doesn't mean they should start using them indiscriminately all the time. )


Quite agree. But many intelligent people learned to speak English without enunciating every consonant clearly and can't really change the way they speak (or at least it would require a lot of effort). For instance, many Americans slur together "What did you think?" into "Whadjya think?"It's an acceptable way to speak in all but the most formal settings, but WRITING it that way is not standard and we wouldn't expect it to be in Duo's database.


Writing is generally more formal than speaking. (Except in literature where the author deliberately uses substandard or extremely informal language to reproduce real colloquial conversation one might actually hear.)


This is an aspect of language learning which, in my opinion, is important for listening comprehension and, thus, should be addressed for practical purposes. As correctly mentioned above, in French it is commonplace to hear such conversational speech: " t'as" instead of "tu as". As for English translation, there should be room for this sort of thing where appropriate. In general, the data base should incorporate contractions, which are legitimate. For example, "wanna", "coulda" and "shoulda" can really be correctly abbreviated as "could've" and "should've".(Last I looked Duo accepts "isn't" and "aren't, why not "should've" and "could've" ?) Nowadays you do hear about "wannabes" and in fact you'll even find it in the dictionary.


We are here on Duo-French to learn French, not English, and the focus is on written French - the audio is only there as an aid. "T'es" is not part of standard written French. For that matter, the majority of French speakers these days omit "ne" from negative constructions in non-formal speech - but if you do that in answering a Duo question, you will be marked wrong because we have to demonstrate that we know the required answers.

Some contractions (is not=isn't) are part of standard written English; others are written representations of common spoken habits (want to=wanna) but are not part of standard written English. I'm not personally 100% certain about could've and would've; other "have" contractions are of course acceptable, such as I've, we've and they've.

I don't know if Duo accepts those particular contractions; if not, the moderators might consider adding them if they were suggested. But the point is that we are here to learn French, and including them in the database does little to improve our French, as far as I can see. At a certain point, it seems like we are being awfully demanding of what is being provided to us as a free service!

Wannabe seems to me like a neologism that has taken on its own life, which is why it's in the dictionary. Writing "want to be" is not a substitute (in fact, makes no sense as a noun).


Would've, should've and could've are all legitimate contractions. It's wrong to classify them as street slang. Therefore, Duo ought to accept them as appropriate translations of corresponding conversational French sentences. Marking them wrong would undermine the reliability of the test result. The foregoing is set forth, of course, as only a suggestion. (Duolingo can accept or reject it.) Since the aim here is to teach French, why penalize a student using accurate contractions in the English translation? Such translations actually demonstrate correct understanding of the colloquial context. Of course Duolingo deserves our thanks for this free service. I'm particularly grateful for the wonderful opportunity it is providing.


I would be pleased to add "would've, should've and could've" if they had a match in French, which they don't.

In conversational French, "devrais" or "pourrais" are not contracted, and the conditional present for any verb does not need a helper anyway.

The other way around, asking French questions in the form of statements with a question mark at the end has "entré dans les moeurs" for quite a long time and this informal construction does not match its English direct translation exactly in usage (yet, I understand that it has extended lately).

So, conversational French has forms you cannot reproduce in English and vice-versa.

Another aspect is that a great proportion of this French course's users are not even English speakers. We believe that it is not bad for them to see proper English in translations.

I don't believe it is so huge an effort to write proper English or French on this course.

The algorithm allowing English contractions has already proven its inefficiency with "'s" accepted and even suggested for any "is" and "has", so we believe we should not add to the current confusion.


And when such suggestions are made via the proper channels then it is often the case that they are added to the list of accepted answers for a question. Though because manpower is probably limited and the number of suggestions made large, it takes time to evaluate them and, if worthy, to implement the changes. But it does happen. Posting in the comment thread of a question is not one of the channels that can make this happen however.


Re: French Questions---Your comment that a French question set forth without subject verb inversion doesn't necessarily apply to the French sentence in question. Your comment that no "confirmation" would be expected, obviously, would not be so, given the context. (So there is ample justification for a translation in English with regular word order provided the student punctuates it with a question mark. )


In this case, both in English and in French, confirmation is, in fact, expected. Specifically, the non-inverted French sentence, here, like its English counterpart, is a question in pursuit of confirmation. Therefore, the use of regular word order followed by a question mark has ample justification. As a translation, it therefore should be accepted.


In my opinion, "Tu veux être mon petit copain ?" is more probably a genuine question, and the form of it (using "tu" and the non-inverted question form) is dictated by the probable context.

Asking for confirmation might take the form, "Tu dis que tu veux être mon petit copain ?" or "C'est vrai que tu veux être mon petit copain ?".

The same would apply with the standard interrogative form: "est-ce que tu veux être mon petit copain ?" vs "est-ce que tu me me dis que... ?" or "est-ce que c'est vrai que...?".


In English questions, confirmation or surprise, would properly be expressed by means of a "tag" interrogative construction, e.g.: He speaks French, doesn't he? She's going out with him, isn't she? That sort of syntax would be the equivalent of the French "n'est pas ", "c'est vrai ", or "quoi". In the absence of such qualifiers, in either of the two languages, the difference between them is often nil. That's why, in English conversation, questions are often formulated as non-inverted sentences, which, in written form, would require a question mark.


Re your comment that French doesn't have contractions, in fact, French does have contractions: For example: 1. Est-ce qu'il va? 2. J'y vais. 3. Il l'a vu. (Of course, there are several others. ) Note should therefore be taken of the fact that contractions are an integral part of both French and English.


The contraction you mention are compulsory. This is not comparable with "should've" or not even "I'm" or "I can't", since there is no alternative.


You should be aware of the fact that "should've" and "could've" cannot be translated by "devrais" or "pourrais". As you indicated, the aforementioned French words are formulated in the conditional present tense. The English verbs under discussion, however, are in the past conditional tense. Thus, for example, "should've" would have to be translated by means of an auxiliary verb followed by the appropriate past participle, for instance: "Paul aurait dû aller au cinéma hier. Le film était magnifique. " (Paul should've gone to the movies yesterday. The film was wonderful. ) Certainly, the long form "should have " would also be right. But, as explained previously, native speakers normally use such contractions in their conversations. C'est-à-dire, cette façon d'expression est entrée dans les moeurs des anglophones. Donc, à mon avis, on devrait accepter une traduction avec cette façon d'expression, en ce qui concerne la conversation en français. Alors, je vous assure que ces contractions appartient au bon usage de la langue anglaise. (The aforementioned English contractions are considered an integral part of proper English. )


I think it's rather cute and what's wrong with the direct question


How do you say girlfriend instead of boyfriend or is it the same??


Use the feminine: ma petite copine.


Can we have the other gender instead of just male :/


There are as many feminine as masculine words in this course.

[deactivated user]

    Do you want to be my little buddy lol


    Thanks for the laugh I gave you a lingot.


    why does it have to be "petit copain" and not just "copain"?


    Copain on its own means friend, pal or buddy. When you add petit, it means boyfriend.


    Girlfriend in France what is it ?


    What if you're a girl and you want to ask someone if they want to be their girlfriend?


    Tu veux être ma copine / ma petite amie / ma petite copine ?


    So "petit" is boyfriend. How do you say girlfriend?


    Quite logically, the feminine of "mon petit ami" is "ma petite amie".

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