Elle m’a mis la puce à l’oreille.
ell mah mee lah pew sah lo-RAY-yuh. Click below to hear this.
She put a bug in my ear.
Elle, in this case, is Mme Françoise Mishinger, who may be la prof to some of you.
We’re not talking about the nasty tricks nine-year-old boys play on girls they would never admit they like. Nor are we discussing FBI spying techniques, where the bug goes in the phone, not the ear. (That’s a whole different post.)
Just like the English, the French really means to give someone an idea. But in French, the bug is more specific: it’s a flea. Putting a bug in someone’s ear may give that person an itch to do something about the idea (at least that was your goal, right?). Une puce is guaranteed to have that effect.
By the way, the basic syntax of this expression is mettre la puce à l’oreille de quelqu’un.
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