pain in the bum

Discussion in 'Italian-English' started by Tuniella, Nov 25, 2009.

  1. Tuniella Senior Member


    Is "pain in the bum" less vulgar than the Italian "una pena al culo" or are they the same?

  2. thatgirlinitaly

    thatgirlinitaly Senior Member

    Pain in the bum in English isn't vulgar at all, but it is colloquial. You can also say "pain in the ***" but that of course is more vulgar.
  3. Tuniella Senior Member

    What would you suggest? Sorry if I was vulgar...
  4. rrose17

    rrose17 Senior Member

    Canada, English
    I think "pain in the bum" sounds a little funny, like a reserved person who is angry but feels too uncomfortable to say the true expression which is "a pain in the ass." Although you probably wouldn't use it when talking to your grandmother I don't think it's VERY vulgar.
  5. Tuniella Senior Member

    Something like "una palla al piede"? We're talking about a team, whose players want to get rid of one of them...
  6. wordie80 Senior Member

    Bologna, Italy
    pain in the bum = spina nel fianco

    which is formal enough and not vulgar at all

  7. Tuniella Senior Member

    Perfect!! Thanks a lto ;)
  8. rrose17

    rrose17 Senior Member

    Canada, English
    A pain in the bum is not really vulgar, it actually just sounds a little childish. But we also say "a thorn in my side" (una spina nel fianco) which is similar but not the same as "a pain in the ass". To be a thorn in someone's side is more specific and also more dramatic. It means to be bothering someone all the time but not neccesarily anyone else. The Green Party has always been a thorn in the side of the Christian Democrats. To be a pain in the ass is more of a general term to describe someone who bothers everyone.
  9. jepsonclough Senior Member

    Cheshire, England
    English - England
    Carrying the same meaning without any vulgarity: "a pain in the neck"

  10. You little ripper! Senior Member

    Australian English
    'A pain in the bum' is not considered childish in Australia; it's simply a little less vulgar than 'a pain in the :warn:arse'. 'A pain in the neck' can be used quite freely without offending anyone (except possibly the person being referred to ;)).
  11. Odysseus54

    Odysseus54 Mod huc mod illuc

    In the hills of Marche
    Italian - Marche
    A "pain in the ass" would be "una rottura di scatole", "una scocciatura", "un rompiscatole" ecc ecc.

    I guess a "pain in the bum" is what here we would call a "pain in the butt" , a nicer way to say the above.

    In Italian, I have never heard of a "pena al culo" of post #1 - my guess is that it is a contamination from chatroom AE.
  12. VolaVer

    VolaVer Senior Member

    Italian - Italy

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