19 things you only know if you did GCSE French
You can remember stationary vocabulary, but nothing actually useful.
Happy Bastille Day! Today marks France’s independence day, and whilst the French indulge in parties and fireworks, it’s a chance for everyone else to reflect upon the closest you could get to the country growing up: French GCSEs.
GCSEs were hard enough, what with nine or 10 subjects to master, raging hormones and annoying parents, let alone having to learn a whole new language as well.
The experience is no doubt burned into your brain to this day, so here are 19 things you’ll undoubtedly sympathise with if you were lucky (or unlucky) enough to take GCSE French.
1. Being able to say that you’re any age up to 16. Nothing further.
2. The phrase “Oh no! I’ve forgotten my exercise book” is probably the only one that will never leave your memory.
I was wondering why my backpack was so light ... and it turns out that I forgot my textbook for French— MADAM A (@madam_av) October 17, 2016
3. Any homework you attempted to do using Google translate inevitably didn’t end well.
4. Having a weird affinity to La Rochelle.
If you didn't learn to ask how to get to the piscine and train station in La Rochelle, did you even study GCSE French?— . (@FourFourCou) May 28, 2017
5. Learning a speech off by heart for your oral exam, but not knowing what on earth your teacher is talking about when she asks you questions about it.
6. Having to make up hobbies so you actually had something to say when the question came up in the oral.
I wish I could be as passionate about things now as I was in my gcse french oral exam. all those hobbies and each one was my raison d'être— Tilly Fletcher (@Tilly_Fletcher) May 5, 2016
7. That feeling of dread when you turn up to the oral exam and could only remember a Spanish phrase you once heard.
8. Don’t even get started on the listening… you probably understood one out of every 20 words?
Me in GCSE French pic.twitter.com/xNcPKfjs4U— José Maria (@joetaylor1239) May 14, 2017
9. Having an in-depth knowledge of all different types of stationary.
10. Going on the French exchange and having half your class go to Disneyland, whereas the other half went to Mass. You were inevitably in the latter half.
11. Genuinely thinking that all French teenagers did was constantly ask each other what they did on the weekend.
Still think 'En Marche!' just sounds like the title of a GCSE French textbook— Oliver Wiseman (@ollywiseman) May 9, 2017
12. Also thinking their style was permanently stuck in the 80s (if those textbooks were anything to go by).
Rucksack, sunglasses and shirt tied round my waist. I look like a photo from a GCSE French textbook circa 1998.— Jack Quarton (@jdquarton) April 14, 2015
13. Only remembering anything if it was in song-form.
14. That doesn’t mean you actually knew what Frere Jacques meant – don’t be silly!
15. The Tricolore French textbook was your bible when exams rolled around.
16. Having a staunchly held belief that over-exaggerated pronunciation would have the power to cover up any lack of vocabulary.
Some top notch over pronounciation of @EmmanuelMacron in the media today. Maaccchhhhhrrronn. Yes newsreader we know you got the French gcse— James Stewart (@jamsstew) June 19, 2017
17. Turns out, pretty much nothing you’ve learned will help you when you actually get to la belle France. Oh – except you’ll be able to ask where the nearest library is with no problem.
three years of a french gcse and I can only say my name and that I play football on wednesdays :))— mojo (@_m8jo) May 15, 2017
18. In fact, the only time that your GCSE French comes in handy is for Eurovision, and you count that as an ultimate triumph.
So far the only advantage of my French GCSE is being able to interpret one extra Eurovision song each year.— Alex (@ItsProbablyAlex) June 26, 2017
19. As painful as the actual GCSE was, looking back you kind of loved it.
French GCSE was the most lit subject— Adel (@adel_21dz) May 16, 2017