I may be wrong but I think you don't need 'ne' if you put the 'pas' or 'plus' when speaking informally. :)
Well that's quite informal, indeed and there are cases where it might just sound a bit childish. Always better to learn the right thing, otherwise, people might not distinguish whether you're making mistakes because French is not your native language, or because you're trying to speak informally :)
True, but if you are having a conversation with a friend and say things like
\"je ne sais pas" as opposed to "je'sais pas"
it will sounds a little childish and odd, as you say, similar to someone in English who would say "I do not know" instead of "I don't know". The former is only really used in English for emphsis, or in a formal setting, but not often spoken in casual conversation.
You are correct, however, that it is better to learn correctly, and then get lazy and informal with these things when you start speaking to people and pick up their 'natural' French habits.
Does it have to be something that has a good flavour?
For example, in English, I might say "You should eat some real food!/ Real food is better" to my friends in the cafe, when they bought chips and I bought spinach. Spinach doesn't taste very good, but it is very healthy, and so could be described as more "real" than unhealthy food such as chips.
Is it the same in French and Spanish, or does the "real" food also have to taste good?
Well, a real meal to the French would be stuff like escargot. They don't like hamburger. In fact my French penpal once wrote me that she didn't like hamburger and that there was a McDonald's near where she lived and that they never ate there. To them, hamburger is not a real meal and my penpal seemed to abhor hamburger. She wrote me in one email a few years ago that they were having escargot, frog legs, salmon, .... She was horrified about McDonald's. In one letter some years ago she told me that in France people eat better or the best. She wrote in French and used the word "mieux". She doesn't speak English at all.
I have said I like the real maple syrup. Also I like the real orange juice. I have said on more than one occasion I want a real meal because I don't consider a cold plate meal (raw veggies and a few slices of salami etc.) to be a real meal. In fact, I say it quite forcefully if I am being billed for it.
Some commenters, on this board, have in the past, written as if the only valid expressions in the English language are those that they themselves use on a regular basis.
B.A.N.G.S. is a method to quickly and easily classify adjectives by whether they are subjective/ figurative or objective/ literal. Subjective adjectives go in front of the noun, objective go after.
Liking real meals which are meals that exist as opposed to simulated meals which don't exist, then real is being used objectively and goes after.
Liking real meals which are meals that one regards as obviously (to them) better than some other kind of meal is subjective and so goes in front.
You are correct. Real in this sense falls under goodness. We know this for sure because the authors placed it in front. Had they placed it after the noun we would really be hard put to figure out what they were driving at in a conversation about food.
Sitesurf, if you're not being compensated for all the wonderful contributions here, then DuoLingo should be ashamed. Thank you. That said, it may be that much confusion over this sentence is because, in the USA unfortunately, this English sentence IS NOT valid. In fact, unless spoken between francophiles, it could be considered insulting.
Most times such a comment would be about whether the meal in question met some shared understanding of the goodness of the food. It is possible to imagine a conversation about whether the meal is real in the sense of whether it is objectively real such as it might be an illusion. Otherwise, I think most people when talking about real meals and food are talking about subjective, figurative standards like ...is it tasty, nutritious, plenty of it, timely etc.
It is the actual meaning of the adjective that determines whether it goes in front of the noun or after. Subjective/figurative adjectives go in front of the noun. Objective/literal adjectives go after.
Many people use the B.A.G.S. convention to help with placement. Beauty, Age, Goodness (or badness), Size type of adjectives are pretty subjective so they go in front.
In this example, vrais appears to be a comment on whether the meals are any good. Thus it falls under the category of Goodness in the B.A.G.S. rule. In a conversation about when the authentic, designated, real meal will be served instead of candies, vrais would go after the noun.
Vrais, referring to subjective quality goes in front. Vrais, referring to objective reality of meals goes after. Sitesurf says about ten per cent of adjectives can shift position based on their meaning.
There are plenty of rules along with exceptions but B.A.G.S. will get you started.
"une histoire vraie" = that is a fact, like "une robe noire", then the adjective is in its natural position in French, ie after the noun.
"un vrai repas" = that is judgmental, the speaker uses "vrai" because he has a personal, subjective notion of what is not "faux".
you already know that "un repas" is masculine, because you were taught this noun before.
you now know that "les repas" is a plural noun, as the determiner is plural.
therefore, the adjective having to agree in gender and number with the noun it modifies, "vrais" must be in masculine and plural, like "repas".