French word of the day: Micmac

French word of the day: Micmac
Photo: Annie Spratt/Unsplash/Nicolas Raymond
If you witness suspicious or intriguing activity, this word might come in handy.

Why do I need to know micmac?

Because it’s common slang used by surprised or skeptical French speakers.

What does it mean?

Micmac can be directly translated from French as an 'intrigue', 'muddle' or 'disorder'.

It is generally used to describe bizarre situations or goings-on whose internal logic is hidden or nonexistent, thus piquing the curiosity of onlookers.

You might describe the seemingly illogical actions of a corrupt colleague as des micmacs, or the suspicious whisperings of friends who are surreptitiously planning your birthday party.

Use it like this
Il y a eu du micmac dans cette affaire ! – This whole business is corrupt!

J’ai l’impression qu’il se passe des micmacs derrière mon dos. – I feel like you’re scheming behind my back.

Explique-moi maintenant tes micmacs. Vous manigancez quelque chose ? – Explain yourself. Are you playing me?


Manigance, Manigancer – Shenanigans, to scheme or plot.

Schmilblick – Coined by comedian Pierre Dac, this fantastical word describes a nonsensical object or circumstance.

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