back to article Sarko verbal spat proves YouTube hit

French prez Nicolas Sarkozy has reinforced his reputation as a man to be reckoned with after telling a disgruntled voter to get stuffed at an agricultural fair in Paris on Saturday. The banter has become a huge YouTube hit. Sarko got a bit stroppy when said pleb refused to shake his hand and insisted: "Oh no, don't touch me." …

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Boffin

Typical man in the Parisien street !!

I think Sarko is behaving *EXACTLY* like a man in the Parisien street !! His opposition is obviously trying to capitalise on what is a very natural event in Paris - being bolshie !!

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Smokescreen

Prescott punching that bloke was purely to take the media attention away from the Labour manifesto that was released that day.

Or maybe I'm just cynical.

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Translation

I personally very much prefer the literal translation of the pleb's words:

"You make me dirty"

The answer is horrifying, nevertheless.

What do you expect of a self-confidence-challenged-shorty?

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@Uwe

It's best not to concentrate too much on the literal translations of French expletives. The translation provided by the Reg captures what was meant. For example, when Marshal Ney, called upon to surrender at Waterloo, famously responded, "Merde!", his meaning in English would be more along the lines of "Bollocks!"

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Pirate

not the same league with Prescott

"While Sarko does indeed show promise as a very unexemplary politico, Monsieur Hollande is evidently not au fait with the public relations skills of our very own John "Slugger" Prescott, who in 2001 responded to an egg-chucking farmer by punching him in the face:"

True, true, but Prescott punched someone who agressed him, while Sarko insulted someone only because he refused to shake his hand (and after Sarko's insistance, told him that it would make him dirty).

Not the same league and I would rather have Prescott have the nuke button than the wee man we have in l'Elysee those days ...

PS: good memories, the Prescott vid !

PPS: kudos to the raising skills of El Reg, in the Voltaire's language !

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Paris Hilton

Ms Bruni

Quel bel homme ! mon president.

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Thumb Up

Sounds like the next blockbuster film...

Mighty Chuck Norris vs John 'Fists of Fury' Prescott....

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Nev
Bronze badge
Coat

Lost in Translation.

I'm no Sarko support: But sorry, his response isn't that bad.

Although the literal translation is roughly correct, what Sarko say after the guy has been pretty offensive is no more harsh than him saying "Get lost then, you poor fool."

Now, if he'd used the phrase "Fils de Pute", although the literal translation would appear tame in English (son of a bitch/whore), in French it's as bad as saying "c**t".

Mine's the one with the French dictionary in the pocket.

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love it !

this video is going to be on all prez-busting french tv shows and i am cannot wait to watch Canal + tonight, notorious for bashing the dwarf who would be king!

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Coat

What else to expect?

Son of a Hungarian immigrant who gained popularity with his somewhat radical attitude against immigrants, a shorty who, not long after rising to power, abandoned his wife for a model... What do you expect from such a man?! To quote his own most famous words: "Get lost, you stupid bastard!"

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Alert

That's not what I heard

The French rag that originally posted the video alleged he said "Casse-toi alors, tu pauvre con", literally "break yourself then, you poor c*nt". "Casse-toi" is commonly used to mean "Get lost". Listening to the video, I did not hear "con". I only heard "tu pauvre", meaning "you poor [man]". So it seems the froggies have newspapers that are as "truthful" as newspapers everywhere else. And they do it without the Dirty Digger!

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@ several

E_Nigma, you blew it, sorry. He abandoned his ex-model wife for a model. Who, as I read on another paper, was as well sick of being told to 'bloody refrain from wearing anything but flat soles'; while Sarko had his 'lifted'.

You know, when I was young, I used to be what they call francophil. But then I could get the Gitane Maïs, had the usual Rouge for any meal, after a generous Pastis as apéritif.

No, what bugs me most of all isn't that they voted for that silly Hungarian immigrant; he can get lost. I despise my beloved Frenchmen (and -women) who elect a teetotaler. That's unthinkable. I resign from my adoration pour La Grande Nation.

... le manteau, s.v.p.

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Muck and mud

"You make me dirty"? Maybe the guy in the crowd had a point.

Sárközy, the Guv's original Hungarian surname, can be very roughly translated as "being from a muddy location". Hmmm.

PS: I can't help liking the French. Even when they are rude and arrogant i.e. most of the time, they remain interesting and amusing for me.

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Paris Hilton

Something about the french

Here in Canada our former prime minister, Jean Chretien, famously choked a protester leading the press to dub it the "Shawinigan handshake", after Chretien's home town.

Paris...well, because.

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various and sundry remarks

@ different translations : had a quick look and listen to the footage, he does indeed say "casse toi alors, pauvre con" which more or less translates to "get lost then, you dumb sod/b***ard".

"Pauvre con" isn't too much of an insult in French; we use "con" all the time, despite the fact that it originally has the same meaning as c**t as a part of the female anatomy. The closest literal translation would be 'moron'.

"pauvre con" more or less means "you're too stupid for us to be arguing, you're a hopeless case" and is often used as a parting shot. So, not much of an insult...

@Ishkandar : ... and while you would indeed probably hear it on the streets of Paris quite often, the point is that the guy is supposed to be president. He can't start picking fight with all the people who don't like him, because then he'd have about 30 million Frenchmen lined up on his doorstep waiting for their turn. Chirac had his faults, but he knew how to handle himself. If that had been Chirac, he wouldn't even have acknowledged the original insult (not in public anyway. But the guy might have found himself in an involved discussion with the bodyguards out of camera view...)

Carry on. And if you've learned anything today, it's how to say c**t with a bit of continental flair.

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pedantry redux

Sarko: bonjour Monsieur ( hello Sir...)

Man: ah, non ne me touche pas... ( ah, don't touch me)

Sarko: casse-toi alors... (get lost then...) *

Man: tu vas me salir... (you'll get me dirty...)

Sarko: casse-toi alors... pauvre con va ( get lost then, you silly twat)**

* casse-toi with this tone is more akin to (insert favourite form of intercourse) off!

** toss-up between various derogatory terms for female genitalia, con is probably slightly less offensive than connard, hence my choice

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@Neil Hoskins

"For example, when Marshal Ney, called upon to surrender at Waterloo, famously responded, "Merde!", his meaning in English would be more along the lines of "Bollocks!""

Actually, IIRC the french still insist that what was really said was (or meant), "The guard dies, but never surrenders!" So, you know, you may think you heard the french guy going "Shit!" after he saw another wave of brits appearing at point-blank range, but what he really meant was a lot more brave than that ;)

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Happy

Not Marshal Ney...

Actually, it is not Marshal Ney but General Cambronne who is famous for this reply.

At least this is what you read in the notorious WIkimerdia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pierre_Cambronne

This page in French also attributes the word to Cambronne:

http://ameliefr.club.fr/Mot-de-Cambronne.html

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Decorum from the President please

He is the President and I like the French and really, that kind of language is inappropriate for his electorate... He's there to represent them and support them come-what-may. I have a foul-mouth myself sometimes and I don't mind knocking around and using expletives but it has a place... and that place is not the French presidential office, nor any other office-of-state.

Still, I wish him well, because he is their elected leader.

I am from Australia and Kevin Rudd is a nerd but well-behaved and I believe that is appropriate ( being well-behaved ). Is he going to implement good policy? that's a different matter, time will tell. Nevertheless, it is a quality to control ones public face appropriately.

Look across the channel or the Indian Ocean Nicolas, not across the Atlantic....

But that's a different matter

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Coat

Everyone knows that...

... if you touch a frog you get warts!

Mine's the green one thanks.

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Happy

I don't understand what he did wrong.

In fact I say he didn't go far enough, he should have simply told the stroppy constituent where to go.

I'd have far more respect for politicians if they spoke their minds and told people to "fuck off" more often. Lets face it the House of Commons deals out more personal insults than "get lost" on a daily basis.

So what I would love to see is a politician with the balls to stand up to a certain Prime Minister or President. It's all well enough telling some malcontent voter to get lost, but when is someone finally going to say,

"With all due respect Mr President, you're a fucking liar".

Saying "with all due respect" means you can append that sentence with anything you like. And any politician with the front to call either premier a fucking liar is certain of re-election, the key is to remain unapologetic after doing so. No matter what. The public will support you I absolutely guarantee it, they're dying for someone to actually say what everyone is thinking.

NB

This is not a partisan comment, I hold all politicians in equal contempt, because every one of them is equally responsible for laws like the Patriot Act and the DCMA. To quote Lewis Black: "The only thing worse than a Democrat or a Republican is when these pricks work together".

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