A person that both Jean and Jason hate walks by.

Jean: What are you imagining right now?

Jason: Me slapping him. Why?

Jason’s full sentence would be “I’m imagining me slapping him.”. But it’s natural to hear “ Me slapping him.”

I’m trying to figure out how to say “ Me slapping him.” in French. I propose « Moi le gifle. » ou « Moi en étant en train de le gifler. ». Lol, I know that I just literally translated but is it the French equivalent? 😬🤞🏽

5 Answers 5


I'd suggest:

— Tu penses à quoi là ?
— À moi qui le gifle. Pourquoi ?

Moi le gifle breaks grammar, should be moi, le giflant.

Moi en étant en train de le gifler is almost correct, should be moi étant en train de le gifler (heavy) or just moi en train de le gifler (still a little verbose.)

  • 1
    Yes, Moi, le giflant is not natural in such a dialog. That'd rather be the legend of a photo where this slapping occurs.
    – jlliagre
    Commented Jan 20, 2021 at 23:23
  • 1
    Moi is implicit in à le gifler because the full sentence would be je pense à le gifler. A nuance between à le gifler and à moi qui le gifle is the focus. In the first case, it is on the action, it is close to je pense le gifler (I think I'm going to slap him) while in the second case, it is more focused on moi (I think about me...) À le gifler is also a sharper reply, like would be a slap ;-)
    – jlliagre
    Commented Jan 21, 2021 at 8:40
  • 1
    @jlliagre: I'd say à moi qui le gifle is the better translation in this particular context, because as you say it puts the emphasis on "me" rather than on the action - as does the English (compare "What are you thinking of? Me slapping him" with "...? Slapping him", where the latter puts the emphasis on the action much as À le gifler does in French).
    – psmears
    Commented Jan 21, 2021 at 15:29
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    @psmears Maybe. Accurately translating a text is tricky because you generally need both a deep understanding of the intended meaning of the source text, including tone, register, cultural references and a command of the target language that is usually only achieved by native speakers. The "best" translation is often a compromise.
    – jlliagre
    Commented Jan 21, 2021 at 17:01
  • 1
    @jlliagre: Of course. I'm just pointing out that the distinction between "focus on the action" vs "focus on the person", that you mentioned in your comment is present in French, is also present in English (in a different form), and the English source text uses the "focus on the person" alternative. Of course there may be many other considerations based on the wider context; I'm just commenting on choosing between these two specific translations based on this criterion :)
    – psmears
    Commented Jan 21, 2021 at 17:07

Pas nécessairement au visagea :

— [À quoi tu penses ?]

À le claquer.1
À lui donner/mettre une claque.2
À lui en claquer/mettre une.

— [Qu'est-ce que tu imagines ?]

Je m'imagine (en train de) le claquer.
Je m'imagine (en train de) lui donner/mettre une claque.
Je m'imagine (en train de) lui en claquer/mettre une.

a Autres pistes de traduction pour slap/to slap : Larousse en ligne ; Collins en ligne.
1 Aussi baffer (donner une baffe), surtout au visage.
2 « SYNT. a) Une claque dans le dos, sur les cuisses, les épaules, les fesses, la joue. b) Une claque sonore, retentissante; une grande, large claque. c) Recevoir, administrer, allonger, flanquer, ficher, foutre une claque. d) Une paire de claques. » (TLFi, « claque » )

  • 3
    Your // and / notation is quite confusing. I am totally clueless on how to read it. Perpahs it would be better to write one variant per line.
    – Tomas
    Commented Jan 21, 2021 at 13:01
  • Thank you very much for these answers @Thélée_Lavoie !!! 😊
    – SFR
    Commented Jan 25, 2021 at 19:58
  • 1
    You're welcome there! @CubbyKushi Commented Jan 25, 2021 at 21:18

You could also say:

  • A quoi tu penses ?

  • Aux baffes qu' j'suis en train d'lui mettre.

  • Penses-tu que flanquer et envoyer c'est aussi courant avec cette formulation-là ? Commented Jan 21, 2021 at 20:37
  • 1
    Baffes is nice but I'm not sure I would use the present here because this isn't happenning for real.
    – jlliagre
    Commented Jan 21, 2021 at 21:52
  • Cette phrase n'est pas adaptée, à mon humble avis. Elle n'est vraie que si la personne est vraiment en train de mettre des baffes, pas seulement en train d'y penser. "À quoi tu penses? (À) lui mettre des baffes" Commented Jan 22, 2021 at 13:31
  • À quoi penses-tu ?
  • À le gifler.

alternatively :

  • À moi, le giflant.
  • À lui filer une gifle !

en langage soutenu :

  • À lui octroyer la gifle qu'il mérite [depuis qu'il..].

"À le claquer" does not work for me as spoken, though probably correct in grammar.

"Aux baffes qu'j'suis en train d'lui mettre." in my perception implies that the action is truly taking place already, no longer imagined.

"Moi le gifle." is not grammatically correct.

  • 1
    Pourquoi à le claquer serait-il possiblement incorrect ?? Commented Jan 22, 2021 at 19:31

Jean: À quoi tu penses en ce moment ?

Jason: Je me vois en train de lui mettre une gifle. Pourquoi ? (slap)

2 Jason: Je me vois en train de le gifler. Pourquoi ? (slap)

3 Jason: Je me vois en train de lui envoyer mon poing dans/sur la figure. Pourquoi ? (punch)

  • 2
    I’m an English native and there is nothing wrong with asking the question “What are you imagining right now?” in any context. But I really need to know the French equivalent of Jason’s response to the question which is “Me slapping him.”. Is it « Moi en étant en train de le gifler. »?
    – SFR
    Commented Jan 20, 2021 at 22:53
  • 1
    Hm... what illogicality do you see in this question? It’s a very simple question.
    – SFR
    Commented Jan 20, 2021 at 22:58
  • 1
    Just FYI, I believe that your first translation is way too "fancy" and thus doesn't really work since the original English sentence is more "colloquial"
    – Ælis
    Commented Jan 21, 2021 at 14:47
  • 1
    @Ælis I guarantee you that there is nothing formal about this translation; perhaps, provided you are very curious about that, you should ask for the opinion of more people that you can trust as knowing the language well.
    – LPH
    Commented Jan 21, 2021 at 14:51
  • 1
    @LPH I'm French. French is my native language, English is not. And I promise you, your first translation does sound overly formal.
    – Ælis
    Commented Jan 21, 2021 at 14:53

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