The French expression "On marche sur la tête" explained

Get prepared to find out all the things you want to know about the basic idiom “On marche sur la tête”.

To be more specific, it includes a detailed definition of what it is and how you can use it in a conversation with an audio example. Together with the useful informations we added like dialogue example, literal meaning, slow pronunciation audio and more!

If you are interested, you will find our others idioms guides on this page and all our French words explained on this page. Wishing you a good learning!

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French to English translation

How to pronounce it?

Slow pronunciation

Normal pronunciation

What does it mean exactly?


  • Marcher → To walk
  • Sur → On
  • La tête → The head

You will probably agree that walking on your feet and thinking with your head is a very basic human feature, right?

Then doing the exact opposite would be a huge nonsense, an illogical behavior, right?

That’s precisely why, when someone is acting illogically or more generally when some things are nonsense, we have the expression: “Marcher sur la tête“.

It means ” It’s as logical as walking on the head“. Ouch.

How to use it

People tend to use it when they are furious toward someone or something.

In the first case, if someone acts illogically, and this is pissing you off: “Mais tu marches sur la tête ou quoi ?!” (But are you walking on your head or what?!)

For the second scenario, let’s imagine you are pissed by a nonsense situation and you want to highlight how crazy this is. For example, your friend asks for your opinion about the world’s ecological situation, then you might say: “On marche sur la tête“.

Here, “On” (It) refers to “People / The world / Humanity” more globally, without targeting one precise person. The situation as a whole is as logical as walking on the head.

Example in a story with translation

Now, let’s see a complete example of this idiom in a story with slow French audio and the English translation below.
Les signes du zodiaque
Zodiac Signs
Karine:   Alors, comment c’était ce repas avec ta soeur ?
So, how was that meal with your sister?
Rémi:   Bien, mais elle ne veut toujours pas quitter son copain.
Fine, but she still doesn’t want to leave her boyfriend.
Karine:   Laisse-la décider elle-même.
Let her decide for herself.
Rémi:   Mais je ne veux pas qu’elle le regrette des années après.
But I don’t want her to regret it years later.
Karine:   Je comprends…
I understand…
Rémi:   Elle n’écoute rien… Elle est tellement têtue !
She doesn’t listen to anything… She’s so stubborn!
Karine:   C’est parce qu’elle est taureau.
It’s because she’s taurus
Rémi:   Oh non, ne recommence pas avec l’astrologie !
Oh no, don’t start again with astrology!
Karine:   Pourquoi ? L’astrologie fonctionne toujours !
Why? Astrology always works!
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