Nocturnal vs trade nights for days

< Previous | Next >
Hello everyone,


I already know that "nocturnal" could be used meaning that somebody "often stays up late or all night and sleeps during the day". I've also come across the expression "trade nights for days" which basically has the same meaning. My question is: which option is more appropriate(natural) in my examples below?

a. I used to be nocturnal when I was younger. I loved playing games all night and sleeping during the day.

Vs

b. I used to trade nights for days when I was younger. I loved playing games all night and sleeping during the day.


Thank you in advance!
 
  • e2efour

    Senior Member
    UK English
    Human beings are not properly described as nocturnal, only certain animals. The word you want is a night owl.
    Your other expression seems ok, although I would not say it was common.
     

    heypresto

    Senior Member
    English - England
    'Nocturnal' is the straightforward 'correct' word for the practice of being awake at night.

    'To trade nights for days' is a way of describing the practice that somebody has coined (probably the person responsible for wherever you came across the expression), but is not natural or idiomatic.

    I would therefore stick to 'nocturnal'.
     

    Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    I've also come across the expression "trade nights for days" . . .
    It could have various meanings, depending on context, including a reference to work scheduling. Where did you come across it? You didn't give us a full sentence or tell us the source (both are required). Please do, and add a link if possible.
     

    mojolicious

    Member
    English English
    Going slightly off-topic... I would understand 'trade x for y' to mean 'giving up x in return for y', which is the opposite of what you're trying to convey with 'trade nights for days'.
     
    Parla,

    I myself invented the phrase "trade nights for days" based on my experience with Portuguese and the possibility that it might exist in actual(natural) English.

    As for the example-sentence, I myself made it. It refers to a person who chooses/prefers to sleep during the day and enjoy the night life. For some time or maybe all their life.

    Google has a few hits, but they don't convince me. Now, I really think "trade nights for days" is nothing but a literal translation from Portuguese and doesn't actually exist in natural English - spoken by British or American natives.
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top