What are some expressions in French for nose picking?
September 21, 2015 5:19 PM   Subscribe

Asking for banter purposes.
posted by wensink to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (9 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
Curer le nez
I'm not French, but I work with a lot of French people.
posted by dragonbaby07 at 5:55 PM on September 21, 2015

se curer le nez
posted by BWA at 5:56 PM on September 21, 2015 [1 favorite]

From OffQC, a guide to Québécois French: décrotter le nez

(crotte is a useful but not very nice word but there are also crottes de nez)
posted by kmennie at 7:13 PM on September 21, 2015

Aside from "se curer le nez", you can say "se fouiller les narines" ("to search one's nostrils"), "se mettre les doigts dans le nez" ("to put one's fingers in one's nose"), or "nettoyer ses écuries" ("to clean one's stables").

An argot dictionary mentions "décrocher ses tableaux" ("to take down one's paintings"), which is cute, but it probably hasn't been used since the 60s.
posted by Spanner Nic at 7:38 PM on September 21, 2015 [4 favorites]

Just for info, but not particularly relevant to your question, many French-speaking people use an invented English expression "finger in the nose" or the original French "doit dans le nez" for something being easy.
Also it's a pity French doesn't have anything as great as German's Nase bohren - Nose drilling.
posted by guy72277 at 1:57 AM on September 23, 2015 [1 favorite]

Les Galeries Farfouillette (pun on the Galeries Lafayette, a department store chain). From farfouiller, to rummage. It's uncommon but I've certainly heard it.
posted by elgilito at 12:57 AM on September 24, 2015 [3 favorites]

Se fouiller dans le nez is how I as a Québecois would say it. There's also Se fouiller dans le nez et s'assumer which rhymes and means to pick your nose and come to terms with it.

Crottes de nez is great because it basically means nose curds.
posted by furtive at 8:47 PM on October 7, 2015 [2 favorites]

Arrête de jouer dans ton nez. This is what you tell kids (mainly), it means stop playing in your nose.

T'as la cervelle qui te pique? You have an itchy brain? or Tu te gratte le cerveau? You're scratching (itching) your brain? This is more something done in friendly teasing when you catch someone with a finger up their snout. Or you can use it as a defense if you are the one caught.

Deboucher le nez. Mean to unclog or unplug your nose, is also used but it is more by blowing than finger exploration but would be an understood description none the less.

Small aside, we also use the expression les deux doigts dans le nez which means having two fingers in the nose for easy but one finger or two it is the same amount of easy.
posted by phoque at 6:41 PM on October 9, 2015 [2 favorites]

A rapid search gives : "nettoyer les écuries", "préparer le bal" - très vieilli - , une variété de mots d'argot pour nez : (et donc se curer le + ) "blair, blaze, tarin, tarbouif, nak, zen" but actually, the thing that springs to mind when someone's picking his nose is : "tu veux mon doigt ?".
posted by nicolin at 12:53 PM on October 10, 2015

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