Tu essaies de me mener en bateau?
tew ess-sayd muh muh-nay ah baa-TOE? Click below to hear this.
Are you trying to take me for a ride?
Or lead me by the nose, or pull the wool over my eyes, or hoodwink me, or string me along. Deception, it would seem, is so common in our culture that there are numerous colorful expressions to refer to it.
So how does take someone for a ride acquire the meaning of deceive someone? My guess is it’s the gangsters. Remember the Godfather movies? Why do you think they always look nervous when they get in a car? Come on, we’ll take you to the airport, but we plan to kill you the minute we drive around the corner.
In French, the expression means trying to take me in a boat. That seems to fit right in with the Godfather theme! Remember the famous boat-on-the-lake scene where Michael has Fredo killed?
Happily, most of the time it doesn’t come to that. It’s usually just a simple white lie: I didn’t knock the vase off the shelf, I came straight home after school without stopping anywhere, someone else ate the last cookie, not I.
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