Elle est coiffée en coup de vent, ou quoi?

Elle est coiffée en coup de vent, ou quoi?

ay lay kwah-fay ah kood vah, oo kwah? Click below to hear this.*


Did her hairdo get destroyed by the wind, or what?

Catty! This is pure, straight-up gossip. We are whispering behind someone’s back.

Since today was such a windy day (I’m writing this on April 17, in case anyone follows weather reports and wants to report an inaccuracy), she could very well have come inside just this minute, breathless, tousled beyond repair, her scarf tossed back over her shoulder, her cheeks pink. In point of fact, she is not coiffée at all; her coiffure is blown to pieces.

On the other hand, maybe this is a fashion show, and we are whispering about the outrageous hairdo sported by that model, the one in the dress made of paper clips and black bowties. She is coiffée outrageously: it appears that each strand of hair sticks out separarely, perpendicular to her skull. And it’s dyed–what color is that, anyway? She looks as if she had been whirled around in a tornado just before stepping onto the runway.

We don’t have a nice handy word like coiffé in English. We can say someone is combed or brushed (though that makes them sound like furry pets), or that their hair is done, or that they have a (nice, ugly, strange, becoming) hairdo. But isn’t it fun to say Elle est coiffée en coup de vent? Her hair is “done” like a gust of wind.

And yes, that en really does mean like/as a in this context. As in, He was disguised as a vampire, Il était déguisé en vampire. She looks like the windstorm itself, not just someone who was hit by one.

*Some mobile phones, such as Blackberries, won’t display the audio player. If no player appears, here’s an alternative link to the audio file:

coiffee_en_coup_de_vent.mp3

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