Mistranslation of French Tax Forms

There is still plenty of unfinished business on the French side of my administrative papers, so I amused myself with some ‘literal’ translations of their menacing letters. Who’s afraid of the Big Bad Wolf and wakes up at night panicking about fines and other punishments? Not me, not me!

 

Apple of the Côte, apples of all orchards unite!

Pursue this chance

limit the number of dates you go out on

keep your bearing regal

and return your ransom

in the envelope joined to the hip of this letter.

You major retard.

Even I can’t keep the imperatives and bad language out.

A man doing his taxes using a calculator and pencil on a white background

15 thoughts on “Mistranslation of French Tax Forms”

  1. You major retard! You can blame it all on Google translate… or the French education system that makes us hopeless in foreign languages. If you need to be comforted, I can assure you that normal French people don’t understand the letters from the tax services either.

    1. You think the French are hopeless in foreign languages? Come to Italy: hopeless is an understatement, most school language teaching is still pre-WWII…

  2. I like “you major retard” – reminds me of our juvenile cackling in French class in elementary school when we learned how to say “I’m late”…

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