13 Mexican Sayings that Sound Really Weird When They’re Translated Literally

Sepa la bola meme

When you grow up Mexican and bilingual, there are plenty of Spanish phrases that can totally get lost in translation, especially if you’re around friends who don’t speak Español. Trying to explain or translate them literally, you realize how ridiculous they sound. You know, stuff like this:

“¿A poco?”

a poco meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Literal translation: A little.

What it really means: You don’t say!?

How it sounds in Spanish:  Friend: “Estoy embarazada.” You: “A poco!?”

How it sounds if you translate it literally: Friend: “I’m pregnant.” You: “A little?”

“¿Qué pedo?”

Qué Pedo meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Literal translation: “What fart?”

What it really means: “What’s up?”

How it sounds in Spanish: “Te veo enojada… ¿que pedo?”

How it sounds if you translate it literally: “You seem upset. What fart with you?”

“Soltar un madrazo.”

Danny Trejo madrazo meme

Literal translation: “A big mother.”

What it really means: To strike someone with force, usually on the head.

How it sounds in Spanish: “Dejate de burlarte de mis cejas o te voy a dar un madrazo.”

How it would sound if you translated literally: “You better stop teasing me about my eyebrows or I will release a big mother on you!”

READ: These Memes Sum Up How Unfazed Latinas are after a Breakup

“Cuates.”

Pedro Infante cuates meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Literal translation: Twins.

What it really means: Bros, buddies or compadres.

How it sounds in Spanish: “Mis cuates son buenos para tirar desmadre.”

How it would sound if you translated literally: “My twins really know how to party.”

“Sangrón.”

Sangrón

Literal translation: Bloody.

What it really means: Annoying.

How it sounds in Spanish: “No puedo soportar a ese güey, es sangrón.”

How it would sound if you translated literally: “I can’t stand that fool, he’s so bloody.”

 

“¡Me vale madre!”

me vale madre meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Literal translation: It’s worth a mother.

What it really means: I don’t give a shit.

How it sounds in Spanish: “Ámame o odiame, me vale madre.”

How it would sound if you translated literally: “Love me or hate me, it’s worth mother to me.”

READ: 8 Memes Only Latinos Understand

“Por si las moscas.”

Por si las moscas meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Literal translation: In case the flies.

What it really means:  Just in case.

How it sounds in Spanish: “No pienso dormir en tu casa esta noche, pero voy a traer un par de calzones por si las moscas.”

How it would sound if you translated literally: “I’m not planning on spending the night, but I’m bringing an extra pair of chonies in case the flies.”

“Estoy encabronada / Estoy encabronado.”

encabronada

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Literal translation: I have become a goat.

What it really means: Pissed off.

How it sounds in Spanish: “Ya se que me veo calmada, pero estoy encabronada.”

How it would sound if you translated literally: “I know I look chill on the outside, but I have become a goat on the inside.”

“¡Sepa la bola!”

Sepa la bola meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Literal translation: The ball knows.

What it really means:  I have no idea.

How it sounds in Spanish: “Todos preguntan de donde fulanita saca tanto dinero para comprar Gucci pirata y yo digo, ‘Sepa la bola.'”

How it would sound if you translated literally: “Everyone is always asking where fulanita gets the money to buy all that fake Gucci and I’m all, ‘The ball knows.'”

READ: People on Social React Like Savages to News of El Chapo’s Capture

¿Qué onda?

Que onda meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Literal translation: What wave?

What it really means:  What’s up?

How it sounds in Spanish: “¿Que onda? ¿Ontan las muchachas?”

How it would sound if you translated literally: “What wave? Where the ladies at?”

“¡No mames!”

no mames meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Literal translation: Don’t suck.

What it really means:  No way! (But it can be used in so many ways)

How it sounds in Spanish: Friend: “Me aceptarón en Harvard.” You: “¡No mames!

How it would sound if you translated literally: Friend: “I just got accepted to Harvard!” You: “Don’t suck!”

“Estoy pedo”

pedo meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Literal translation: I’m fart.

What it really means:  I’m drunk.

How it sounds in Spanish: “No so porque todos dicen que estoy pedo cuando apenas estoy empezando.”

How it would sound if you translated literally: “I don’t know why everyone keeps saying I’m fart when I’m just getting started.”

 

READ: 11 Rules Every Latino Unconsciously Lives By

“¡Aguas!”

Aguas memes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Literal translation: Waters!

What it really means:  Watch out! Also: Be careful!

How it sounds in Spanish: “Aguas, ese perro es bravo.”

How it would sound if you translated literally: “WATERS, that dog is vicious!”

What’s you favorite untranslatable saying? Let us know and no seas gacho, hit that share button.