another way to say "handsome"

Discussion in 'English Only' started by cmayumi, Jun 5, 2008.

  1. cmayumi New Member

    Brazil
    Hello

    I looked at the previous posts on this word, but still have a question.

    I am translating a sentence from a guy that says Beckham (the soccer/ football player) is handsome. But he says that in Spanish and it sounds funnier than the word "handsome". So instead of translating as "he is/looks handsome" is there another more coloquial way of saying the same thing, but with a humorous twist.

    Note: the person who says that is a man.

    Thanks.
     
  2. matnic17 Junior Member

    English - United States
    He is good looking.
    or
    He's hot. (I'm not sure what you mean by humorous twist but this may be what you are looking for.)
     
  3. cmayumi New Member

    Brazil
    The humor is in the way the guy admits that Beckham is handsome. He pauses before saying that and laughs after saying the word in spanish ("guapo").
    Thanks!
     
  4. GreenWhiteBlue

    GreenWhiteBlue Senior Member

    New York
    USA - English
    The following would all sound amusing coming as an admission by one man speaking of another man:

    He's a hunk.
    He's a looker.
    He's pretty.
    He's a fine-looking specimen.
     
  5. KenInPDX Senior Member

    Portland, Oregon
    US English
    In this context, I think "hot" would work best to convey the humor.
     
  6. ewie

    ewie Senior Member

    This septic isle!
    NW Englandish English
    I like GWB's suggestion of hunk ~ the kind of word only a woman, or possibly a gay man, would usually use of a man.
    He's a hunk
    He's quite a hunk
    He's pretty hunky
    etc.
     
  7. KenInPDX Senior Member

    Portland, Oregon
    US English
    Hunk would work, but "hot" has a better rhythm if this were going to be spoken. I think the comedy depends on a delay before the man says that Beckham is (insert preferred synonym for handsome here).

    He's...hot

    flows better than

    he's...a hunk
     
  8. EvilWillow Senior Member

    German (Germany)
    BrE: He's fit (= sexually attractive).
     
  9. GreenWhiteBlue

    GreenWhiteBlue Senior Member

    New York
    USA - English
    Notice, though, that in AE "fit" means "in good physical shape", usually through exercise and diet. In AE the word suggests nothing at all about attractiveness; it would be very easy to be quite ugly, but very fit.
     
  10. Trisia

    Trisia mod de viață

    București
    Romanian
    I like all of GWB's suggestions, a lot, but I am rather fond of "looker" (and "fine-looking specimen"). It means that he considers Beckham handsome and adds a little touch of sarcasm, without the connotations of "hunk" and "fit." I think I'd pick "looker."


    Of course the easiest way would be to say simply "beautiful," and that can be a great compliment (and it sort of means that he's a bit effeminate).
     
  11. gaer

    gaer Senior Member

    Fort Lauderdale
    US-English
    Unless the man who is talking about Beckham is gay, I think the number of possibilities in English is extremely limited.
     
  12. katie_here Senior Member

    England
    England/English
    There is a common saying here, but I'm not sure I'm allowed to say it, so mod's, please feel free to edit and I will understand.

    When a man is complimenting another man on his looks or style or whatever, he may say "he's the dogs bollocks". Which means it's something to be envied but in a joking way.
     
  13. gaer

    gaer Senior Member

    Fort Lauderdale
    US-English
    I thought of one possibility in the US, although I don't like it myself:

    "He's a real stud."

    I've also seen this at least a few times, to make fun of someone who think's he's God's gift to the world:

    "He's thinks he's a real stud."
     
  14. ewie

    ewie Senior Member

    This septic isle!
    NW Englandish English
    I apologize for bringing this up but (from what I remember of my Spanish) the original word used (guapo) is a fairly innocuous one: not so informal as hunk or looker (e.g.), nowhere near as slangy as the dog's bollocks or even stud ~ closer to English handsome-sexy than all the brilliant stuff we've been coming up with:). I presume 'the guy' only laughs after saying it because it's just not the kind of thing a straight man says of another man. So? So I've come full circle and ended up back with
    He's a sexy guy [laughs].
     
  15. katie_here Senior Member

    England
    England/English

    What would you say (personally) about a handsome guy. It might be a good idea if the men on here explained how they would call another guy handsome, in their own words, without sounding gay if its a heterosexual comment that's wanted.
     
  16. Porteño Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    British English
    I have to admit that I've never heard of that use before. To me, 'fit' always connotes good physical condition and has no connection with being attractive per se, although in most people's eyes a physically fit person is generally more attractive than one who is not.

    An old expression used to be 'he's the dog's dinner', but I haven't heard that for a very long time, rather like 'the cat's whiskers'.

    From what has been said so far, my vote would go with 'hot':) or perhaps, very tongue in cheek, 'he's gorgeous'.;)
     
  17. ewie

    ewie Senior Member

    This septic isle!
    NW Englandish English
    Yeah but the thing is, Katie, that the 'guy' in question realizes that what he says does sound gay, which is why he laughs ... in embarrassment.

    Brilliant Porteño! I love it!
     
  18. Porteño Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    British English

    Thanks, gorgeous!:D!
     
  19. AngelEyes Senior Member

    English - United States
    All of these suggestions are excellent, but if Ewie's correct, then you want a phrase that's a bit less slangy and more refined.

    I'd suggest: He's an extremely good-looking man.

    ...personally Beckham doesn't do much for me...

    AngelEyes
     
  20. ewie

    ewie Senior Member

    This septic isle!
    NW Englandish English
    Ooh, you are awful, Portie!

    (Eyup, here she is ...)
    Yes but, Angeliña, that's the kind of thing a straight man could say about another man without feeling the need to follow it up with an embarrassed laugh.
     
  21. katie_here Senior Member

    England
    England/English
    What about "Drop dead gorgeous".
     
  22. Porteño Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    British English
    You mentioned 'fit' as being attractive, with which I disagreed. I received you PM but can not reply because your box is full.

    Sorry mods, but I don't know any other way of conveying that information to send my reply. :)
     
  23. AngelEyes Senior Member

    English - United States
    Not in my world, Ewedles. :D

    I can't think of one guy I know who would say that with a straight face. (Pardon the pun. It was unintentional...but hey, it's kind of funny in retrospect.)

    Men I know just don't go there. In fact, you ask most men if another guy is good-looking, and they'll hem and haw, shrug their shoulders and go, "How should I know?"

    To actually say it - unsolicited - about another man? No way.

    But I'm not a straight man. I'm just talking from observation. I watch men all the time and listen to them. In my experience, they don't like to focus on another man's physical attributes. At least not out loud.

    AngelEyes
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2008
  24. katie_here Senior Member

    England
    England/English
    I've cleared some space. :)
     
  25. AngelEyes Senior Member

    English - United States
    Katie,

    I think I know where you're going with your suggestion.

    In AE, when we see a guy who's really "cut" we say, "Man, look at him. He's buffed."

    This is good, but I think it's too informal if I listen to Ewie's explanation of the Spanish word, which is the word that started this thread.

    A man could be handsome, but not in tiptop athletic shape.

    I always listen to Ewie...

    AngelEyes
     
  26. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Urbana-Champaign, IL
    Am. English, Pal. Arabic (See profile)
    I agree with AngelEyes.

    The word I would use is good-looking, which I think comes closest to the Spanish word in this context. Most of the others that have been suggested are "too much."

    My world is similar to AngelEyes's. Good-looking is not a word most men I know would casually use to describe another men. It wouldn't surprise me in the least to hear it elicit an embarrassed laugh.

    A possible alternative is attractive.
     
  27. Porteño Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    British English
    I wouldn't have thought it was strange for a man to refer to another man as good-looking, but 'attractive' would most definitely be a no-no unless he was gay. :D The Spanish word can be used with many different connotations including just about all of those mentioned, I don't think it would be limited to 'good-looking' or 'handsome'.:)
     
  28. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Urbana-Champaign, IL
    Am. English, Pal. Arabic (See profile)
    Indeed, it can, in various contexts, but I think that in this context the man wasn't trying to imply anything sexual. I could be wrong, of course. I would have to hear it (because tone of voice makes a big difference here).

    You are right that attractive is less neutral than good-looking, although I have to say I'm surprised you dubbed it a "no-no" when you seem to think hot and gorgeous would be fine coming from a straight man. I definitely find attractive more neutral than either of those.

    I guess a lot of this is subjective. :)
     
  29. Porteño Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    British English
    'Gorgeous' was intended as a joke and 'hot' would be very tongue in cheek as the original post implied, to my way of thinking.
     
  30. Cathy Rose Senior Member

    Northeast USA
    United States English
    A waitress called my husband a "smokin' hottie" one night. We all laughed. I think she wanted a nice tip. My daughter uses the phrase "eye candy" to describe a good-looking guy.
     
  31. LittleLouLou New Member

    UK
    English-UK
    For me, "attractive" seems like the best alternative.

    It's a word that a man wouldn't usually use to describe another man (at least not in public anyway) and so would merit the embarassed laugh afterwards. :)
     

Share This Page