De but en blanc

I’m not much of an athlete, but one of my most faithful blog readers requested another sports story. Fortunately, there’s a big even unfolding in French sports this weekend. The French National men’s handball team will be defending their World Championship title. Handball isn’t a high status sport in North America, but it’s been known in France since medieval times. The rules have evolved and it’s more popular in some centuries than others, but it’s riding high at the moment. Today, it’s played by seven players per side. It’s rapid and allows plenty of body contact. It’s not unusual for more than twenty goals (buts) to be scored by each team, so there’s a lot to cheer about. The French team currently holds the European and Olympic titles as well.

Today’s expression, de but en blanc, (duh boo on blahn) literally means “from goal in white,” which basically makes no sense at all. Figuratively, it means point-blank. I hope the French team will make enough de but en blanc shots on the but to keep their title for another year. Allez les Bleus!

Update: Les Bleus proved that they were the finest quality team in the world today by winning in overtime 37-35.


About Patricia Gilbert

Patricia Gilbert is a French teacher. She's Canadian, lives in the United States, but dreams of living in France. Follow her on Instagram @Onequalitythefinest and on Twitter @1qualthefinest.
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