https://www.duolingo.com/McNeillDorothy

C'est comme ca.

"It is like that." Old translation

Today, Americans translate this with the popular expression: "It is what it is."

2 years ago

3 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/hivemindx
hivemindx
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I think "it's like that" and "it is what it is", while similar,have quite different meanings.

First of all, like in French, you can phrase the former as a question very easily. "Is it like that?" or more usually "It's like that, is it?". Generally used when a person sees or hears something about a situation that is new to them, they are stating that they now understand what is going on. For example you find your coworkers are planning to go to the pub without you.

You can also use "it is like that" or "c'est comme ça" in a much more literal way. "Is your bike one of those three speed city bikes?" - "It is like that, but it has eight speeds." "C'est comme ça, mais il a huit vitesses"

In my experience "It is what it is" is used to express or demand acceptance of, a usually negative, situation. "Why are our pension funds now worthless?" - "It is what it is. We need to move forward."

I had a look on Bab.la and it does have "C'est comme ça" as a translation for "It is what it is" in one case the more common translation is "Il est ce qu'il est.".

I think you need to be careful to identify how "C'est comme ça" is being used in the sentence before you decide whether to translate it as "It's like that" or "It is what it is"

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/wildfood
wildfood
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I keep coming across "nom d'un chien" in my reading. I think it means "for heavens sake!" or the equivalent.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Berto29441
Berto29441
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...it can be "gosh" o "damn"

2 years ago
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