1. barthes New Member

    English, England
    Any suggestions about how to translate this common (and colourful) exclamation of irritation into English that gets the flavour of the original across? I'm not getting it quite right...
  2. aurilla Senior Member

    Puerto Rico
    Am Eng/PR Spanish
    "Hay que joderse" podría traducirse como ""Life sucks/ a bitch (and then you die)!"

    Another alternative: "What a bitch!"
  3. Pilar Polledo

    Pilar Polledo Senior Member

    España - Castellano
    Well, it is not a question: Hay que joderse !!

    And, no idea how to translate it into English. I guess there is no translation. It is a swear word, you know it, don't you?
  4. edwingill Senior Member

    England English
    can you believe it
  5. Pilar Polledo

    Pilar Polledo Senior Member

    España - Castellano
    Sorry Edwingill, I don't think so.
  6. lazarus1907 Senior Member

    Lincoln, England
    Spanish, Spain
    It's hard to translate it and still keep its full "flavour"
    A few more alternatives:

    I can’t fucking believe this!
    To hell with it all!
    This is fucking unbelievable!

    It is an expression that expresses surprise about something, especially when there is nothing we can do about it.
  7. jinti

    jinti Senior Member

    From the International Dictionary:

    ¡hay que joderse!, tabú tough shit!

    Although, from Lazarus' suggestions, I was thinking more along the lines of "well, fuck a duck!"
  8. barthes New Member

    English, England
    Great stuff - thanks to all. It's one of those colloquial phrases whose meaning depends on context.
  9. lazarus1907 Senior Member

    Lincoln, England
    Spanish, Spain
    Hi jint,

    When it comes to English, all I can do is give it my best shot, but of course, I prefer to hear natives' point of view, like yours.

    I included an explanation of what exactly do we mean in Spain when we use that expression. If your version matches my explanation, then it is the right one, of course. But don't trust dictionaries blindly: This expression, when said quickly, although is not exactly "formal Spanish", it is almost equivalent to "I can't believe my luck / what I see / what I hear / this, etc...". It is not as harsh as it looks, although you wouldn't say it in front of your granny, of course.
  10. jinti

    jinti Senior Member

    Well, my granny has the mouth of a sailor, jejejeje. But point well taken about the dictionary definition. Taking into account what you've said, I think I'll stick to my duck phrase. :) Thank you for the clarification, Lazarus.
  11. lazarus1907 Senior Member

    Lincoln, England
    Spanish, Spain
    Ok, jinti. New sentence for me to remember then!
    Thanks for your contribution... and congrats in advance for those 1000 posts!
  12. Ivy29 Banned

    HAY QUE joderse, this colourful saying means that YOU HAVE TO break your fucking/bloody back doing sth/learning sth/studying sth( it implies a lot of hardship, and difficulties).
    You have lots of words with F*ck, probably you have a better wording for this meaning ( it has other meanings according to context) in Spanish as well as English.

  13. Ivy29 Banned

    Hay que joderse = this colourful wording means you HAVE TO break your fucking/bloody back doing sth/working/studying/ etc. This implies hardship/difficulties to solve by yourself in order to learn. Maybe you can come with a better phrase with this sense. It has many others in Spanish as well as in english according to context.

  14. lazarus1907 Senior Member

    Lincoln, England
    Spanish, Spain
    Hi Ivy29,

    Maybe this expression is used differently in Colombia and Spain, but I am pretty sure about how it is used in my country. In fact, I checked it in the dictionary (see quote below). Literally, of course, it means that you have to bear the pain or suffering... without explicitly stating what, but in practice, it is just an exclamation which we use to express surprise when there is nothing we can do about something, i.e. surprise!... but there is nothing you can do about it, though:


    We are told by the government that we have to make sacrifices with increases in taxes, etc.. because of the bad economical situation. Then, all of a sudden, we read that the president (the one who gave us the speech) has several houses in different countries, two yachts and god knows what else. I would say “¡Hay que joderse!”

  15. Ivy29 Banned

    I WOULD SAY = ¡Qué joda esta del gobierno! instead of hay que joderse

    Hay que joderse in COLOMBIA, is exactly the meaning I stated above, we have many :
    ¡No jodás!
    !Deja la joda!
    ¡No vengas con más jodas!
    ¡Deja de joder!
    ¡eres una joda!
    ¡Te la pasas jodiendo en clase!
    Para saber bien Medicina hay que joderse día y noche estudiando.
    ¡Qué joda!
    Ha cogido una joda de llegar tarde a la casa.
    Jode porque sí o porque no
    ¡Tienes que joderte p'que sepas lo que es ganarse la plata!, etc, etc.

  16. lazarus1907 Senior Member

    Lincoln, England
    Spanish, Spain
    Hola de nuevo, Ivy

    Clearly we use the expression slightly differently, then, so it really depends on the country of origin of the person who uses the expression. "¡Que se joda el gobierno!" surely is used the same way (and it would fit nicely), but it is not the same.

  17. Limeade Senior Member

    Hola a Todos!

    It sounds like--in English---well New York/Brooklyn

    You gotta Fuckin' be kidding me!!!

    You have got to be fucking kidding me!
  18. Juliomelecio

    Juliomelecio Senior Member

    Valencia, Ve
    Español Venezuela
    Hay que joderse para tener éxito = make a great effort to succeed.
    Hay que joderse para poder graduarse = to study hard to get a college degree.
    Hay que joderse para mantener a una familia = to work hard to support a family, etc.
    slang, not polite
  19. Mirlo

    Mirlo Senior Member

    Castellano, Panamá/ English-USA
    En Panamá lo usamos de la misma manera que en Colombia y Venezuela, Hay que joderse= you have to make a great effort to do something.
    Hope this helps,

  20. barthes New Member

    English, England
    Thanks to all - great international slant on these answers, too!
  21. nicelinguist New Member

    USA (English)
    A great English expression (at least in the US) that conveys the same meaning is :

    Ain't that some shit./?!

    What do you think?
  22. ryandward

    ryandward Senior Member

    English - USA
    To hell with it!

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