On ne saurait pas les louper!
awn so-ray PAH lay loo-PAY! Click below to hear this pronounced.
You couldn’t possibly miss them!
This is a line of dialogue from the movie Hereafter, which, in spite of being an American film, is packed with French. Marie, a journalist, looks out the window and spots the new posters advertising her TV talk show. They are giant, and eye-catching. She is pleased, and remarks, On ne saurait pas les louper!
Let’s dissect that a bit. To start with, saurait is from the verb savoir, to know or to be able to. Je sais nager means I can swim in the sense of I know how to swim. It has nothing to do with your physical ability to swim.
This form of the verb is the conditional. So when Marie says On ne saurait pas, she means, You would not know how to miss them–that is, you would have to make a real effort to miss them.
And then there’s louper, which means to miss–not I miss you, but to miss a train, not see the posters, flunk a quiz, miss your entrance (stage left, waving arms and shouting)…pretty much anything it is possible to fail at.
Interestingly, since in the movie the context of this remark is failing to see, we should note that a jeweler uses une loupe in order to see better.
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