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"rico suave" ?

Discussion in 'English Only' started by badgrammar, May 13, 2006.

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  1. Can anyone tell me what the term "rico suave" means for an English speaker in this context? I'm guessing it means "smooth", but can anybody tell me more?

    "Thank you for your understanding in making this process as "rico suave" as possible."

    Thanks

    Edited to note that I found the words in other threads, and undderstand their individual meanings, but has the specific term "rico suave" come to have a distinct meaning in English?
     
  2. maxiogee Senior Member

    imithe
    I presume it to mean "richly smooth", and would associate it with such things as good Irish Whiskey, fine coffee, hand-rolled cigars, and the sound the E-type Jaguar I wish I owned!
     
  3. la reine victoria Senior Member

    Hi Badgrammar,

    Take a peek at the Urban Dictionary. As a BE speaker I've never heard of "rico suave". I imagine it means smooth. More of an Americanism I think.



    LRV
     
  4. maxiogee Senior Member

    imithe
    But, your Majesty, would one thank people with such a put-down? I've heard of back-handed compliments (X is a modest man, with much to be modest about) but they would need to be delivered in a language understood by the recipient to be worth sending.
     
  5. Thanks guys and dolls! I didn't know that urban dictionary site, that is a great link. Actually it says "rico suave" is like a slick latin-lover type, or a guy who thinks he's really cool, but is actually a buffoon. That actually makes little sense in the context, but maybe the person who said it was using their own private definition of the term....
     
  6. In the US, there was a Latin rapper named Gerardo who had a hit song, featuring a rap section in Spanish, called "Rico Suave" in 1991. You can find him on Wikipedia. I'm new here, so I can't post URLs.

    The song was cheesy, as was Gerardo's shirt-less posturing in the video. It was popular for a short while and became the butt of jokes almost instantly. So saying to someone "Ah, you're looking very 'Rico Suave' today" suggests that you're too slick or trying too hard to impress the ladies, in a cheesy sort of way. It would generally be a light-hearted insult.
     
  7. emma42 Senior Member

    North East USA
    British English
    I have never heard it used in England, but it will be now!
     
  8. nycphotography

    nycphotography Senior Member

    I do be learnin stuff
    John-Paul Miller, NYC
    AKA (also known as) a SLICKSTER.
     
  9. emma42 Senior Member

    North East USA
    British English
    In BE "slimy".

    Did you see that guy the other night with his silk suit and his gelled hair? He thought he was great. Eeuurrggghh! He was so slimy!
     
  10. maxiogee Senior Member

    imithe
    These comments on the -yuck- factor of the expression don't fit with the impression being given in the questioning post. The person was being thanked for their understanding in making a process as rico suave as possible - this not something one would do if the concept was negative.
     
  11. la reine victoria Senior Member




    Then I don't think Badgrammar should use it this way. Unless he wishes to interpret it as "sleek", which also can mean "smooth".




    LRV
     
  12. True. It seems to me that the person using the expression had no knowledge of its origin or original meaning. It could be the meaning of the expression is evolving, or it could be that the person using it was simply clueless and misapplied it.
     
  13. I am beginning to think that is the case - misuse of the phrase, where the person thought it was a synonym for "to go smoothly"...
     
  14. ewhite

    ewhite Senior Member

    USA/English
    I only wish I could point you all to some internet video snippet of Gerardo performing (or preening to) Rico Suave. It would settle any doubt of how two positive words acquired such pejorative denotation.
     
  15. nycphotography

    nycphotography Senior Member

    I do be learnin stuff
    John-Paul Miller, NYC
    Maybe it isn't a misuse at all. Maybe it's being used tongue in cheek.

    In your best hollywood voice: dahhhling, you can make this process sooo rico suave.
     
  16. I wish I knew the source, but it's just a sentence I picked up from a forum in another language where someone was asking the question... Sorry!
     
  17. freesanima New Member

    español-Cuba
    The first time I´ve heard the rico suave expression was around 1986 in La Habana...It's hard to pin where it was born being La habana as it is a place where coloquial forms of speaking change every day and take rags from all the countries represented in la Habana (tourism,diplomatic corps,vessels crews,students... you name it)...you actualy can see it changing.
    In just a matter of weeks it changed from just suave to rico suave and then to rico , suave y bajito de sal...All meaning that something o somebody was on the swing...riding the wave or whatever expressión fulfills the idea of something or somone with great popular aceptance...But by no means suave or rico suave was used as a pejorative term...at least not until 1997...That´s it
     
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