spoil the barley for beer

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Chloe_29

Member
Spain Spanish
Hello!

I was wondering if this sentence is an idiom...

Hardly time to go spoiling the barley for beer

I understand it (literallly) as:

Son tiempos duros para malgastar la cebada en cerveza

Is that right or has some other meaning I don't know.
Thank you so much!
C.
 
  • Lis48

    Senior Member
    English - British
    This is something that is said in times of crisis.
    It can be said in a general way e.g. meaning that the day after you lose your job is not the right time to book a cruise to the Caribbean!
    More literally it means when there is not enough food to eat, don´t waste it making drink.
    It says hardly not hard so means it is definitely not the appropriate time to be using a valuable food just for beer.
    e.g. I´m hardly likely to be able to speak Spanish after only a week.
    No es precisamente el tiempo ( no es el tiempo apropiado) para malgastar la cebada para hacer la cerveza ( en lugar de hacer la comida).
    My Mum used to say it to me when I wanted to go out to a party rather than study for an exam the next day!
     

    nangueyra

    Senior Member
    Castellano-Argentina
    This is something that is said in times of crisis.
    It can be said in a general way e.g. meaning that the day after you lose your job is not the right time to book a cruise to the Caribbean!
    More literally it means when there is not enough food to eat, don´t waste it making drink.
    It says hardly not hard so means it is definitely not the appropriate time to be using a valuable food just for beer.
    e.g. I´m hardly likely to be able to speak Spanish after only a week.
    No es precisamente el tiempo ( no es el tiempo apropiado) para malgastar la cebada para hacer la cerveza ( en lugar de hacer la comida).
    My Mum used to say it to me when I wanted to go out to a party rather than study for an exam the next day!
    Hola

    Nada que ver con mi interpretación. Gracias por tu respuesta tan clara.

    Saludos
     
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