Haunted by the blank page
Here are a few interesting French expressions I discovered this week:
- le tapis roulant à bagages = luggage/baggage carousel, or literally a “rolling carpet for baggage” – shame it isn’t a tapis volant (flying carpet)!
What do you call the conveyer belt thing that where you (hope to) retrieve your bags after a flight?
- le/la bagagiste = baggage handler – sounds like someone who really doesn’t like baggage. Maybe the reason why the French bagagistes seem to be on strike so frequently is that they can only bring themselves to handle baggage for limited periods.
- la hantise de la page blanche = writer’s block, or literally “obsessive fear of the white/blank page” – a good way to describe the condition. L’hantise comes from hanter (to haunt), from the Old Norse heimta (to bring home). The haunted meaning possibly came from English during the 19th century period of Anglomania. or from the Norman words hanté (visited by ghosts, haunted) and hant (ghost) [source].
Do you ever suffer from writer’s block / fear of the blank page? If you do, how do you overcome it?