The French are tickled (and ticked) by an American's guide to 'Vous' and 'Tu'

The LA Times thought it might be fun to run my light-hearted take on when to use tu and vous, excerpted from my about-to-be-released memoir Flirting with French, but when the piece got picked up by Le Monde, it went viral in France, garnering over 30,000 Facebook links in one day, with Le Monde (and many of the comments) taking it all quite seriously!

Serves me right for mucking about with the French language, I guess. But I think I did get most of it right. You can see the original chart here and francophones can see Le Monde's treatment of it here.

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Comment by Gerry on September 8, 2014 at 10:49am

I find it very amusing that it got so much attention in Le Monde.

Comment by kate dunn on September 7, 2014 at 9:37am
Génial! Marrant comme tout et, en plus, bien clair.
I've been teaching French and Spanish for decades in the U.S., and this is the best explanation I've seen and been able to come up with. If I weren't teaching kids, I'd snag it (with your permission, bien sûr).
Comment by William Alexander on September 6, 2014 at 10:51pm

Oh, If you insist, Robert. Flirting with French, about my mission to learn French at the age of 57, is being published September 16. You can learn more about it here, and watch newyorkinfrench or the events page of, for local appearances and other news. France-Amérique is coming out with an interview (a short version is on their website) as is French Morning.We're still working out arrangements for a possible date at fiaf, and I'll be be on Bloomberg TV with Pimm Foxx on Sept. 18.

Comment by Robert Roth on September 6, 2014 at 9:28pm

Tell us about your book.  Is there any pre-publicity?  When will it be released?

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