Monday, June 30, 2008

dar la lata/darse lata

two similar expressions with subtle differences

darse lata - 1) to not feel like it, or to not want to
Me da lata ir al médico.
I don't feel like going to the doctor

Vero: Anda al dentista si te duele la muela.
Juan Pablo: Me da lata.

Vero: Go see the dentist if your molar hurts.
Juan Pablo: I don't feel like it.

2) to not like a situation
Me da lata que Bush sea mi presidente.
I don't like the fact that Bush is my president.

sinonimo: Me da paja. (Esta expresión es vulgar ya que la paja es el pene.)

dar la lata - to make the effort, to bother to do something
Me di la lata de levantarme temprano y ir a la U hoy día, pero estaba cerrada. Parece que estamos en paro.
I made the effort to get up early and go the U, but it was closed. I guess we are on strike. (protesting)

Chilenismos, coloquiales, informales

Sunday, June 29, 2008


huacho/a - huérfano, orphan. Probably an important theme of Chilenity. In one of Julio Pinto's history books on Chile, I read that in 1900, something like 45% of Chileans were orphans. This could have a significant impact on Chile's culture.

But anyway it's pretty typical to call your friend huacho or huacha here, or even better huachita o huachito.

¿Cómo estay, huachita?
¿Bien y voh?

How you doing, hun?
Good, and you?

No lloris más, washa pelá. -- This is like a modern refrain. I can't remember where I heard it. It might be part of a song.
It literally means, "Don't cry anymore, bald orphan." But it's usually said with affection.

other spellings of huacha: washa, guacha

*Huacho can have a negative meaning if said with another tone.
"un huacho culiado" is a "fucking bastard"

So just be aware how you use it. To be on the safe side, it's better to use "huachita, huachito".

Chilenismo, coloquial

Thursday, June 26, 2008


cuchufleteado - adj. messed with, altered

Xavi les está hablando en inglés cuchufleteado. Los pobres gringos no le van a entender ni wea.
Xavi's speaking his own dialect of English. The poor gringos aren't going to understand a thing.

Chilenismo, coloquial

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

tengo sed

tengo sed - I'm thirsty. What some Chileans say when they have a thirst that can only be quenched with an alcoholic beverage.

Mario: Tengo sed.
gringa: Tomáte un vaso de agua.
Mario: Pero tengo sed.

Mario: I'm thirsty.
gringa: Have a glass of water.
Mario: But I'm thirsty.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

se me echó la yegua

se me echó la yegua - cuando no das para más, for example when you have plans to go out at night and at some point you realize that you are actually pretty tired and not to up to it, you say "se me echó la yegua" which more or less means, "my mare died". jajaja. That's funny. Languages are such a kick in the pants.

Maca: Vamos al Pagano?
Vero: Puusha, tenía hartas ganas, pero se me echó la yegua.
Maca: Pero siempre se te echa la yegua.

Maca: Do you want to go to Pagano?
Vero: Bummer, I really wanted to go, but I'm feeling a bit worn down.
Maca: But your mare always dies. (jejeje)

Chilenismo, Coloquial, queda la duda si la expresión es vulgar...possibly a vulgar expression

oooh. a possible amendment. According to my favorite Chilean dictionary of chilenismos, echar la yegua
means that you quedaste dormido raja. you fell into a dead sleep...I'll consult with another source for this...and get back to you.

Monday, June 23, 2008


cahuinero - a person who relates cahuínes or talks behind people's backs

cahuín - a lie that is intentionally complicated and entangled as a way to confuse the other person, and you can construct the mansa cahuín talking behind people's backs. A good piece of Chilean literature that is basically structured as el manso cahuín is Stradivarius Penitente de Alejandra Rojas. This is a very good book.

Originally I thought a cahuinero was the same as a chamullento, but they aren't. So I take that back and am going to edit the "chamullento" post.

Chilenismo, coloquial


chimbobeado - drunk. This expression comes from the word "chimbobo" which is a cheap 5 liter bottle of wine.

sinónimos: curado, raja curado, borracho, cocido, mote? and there are many more, just can´t remember any more at the moment.

Chilenismo, coloquial

Sunday, June 22, 2008

patas negras

patas negras - black feet...someone who has black feet is the "lover", a cheater. This expression comes from Lota, (not too far from Concepción). There has been a carbon mine there since the mid-nineteenth century, although it's been closed since the 1990s. The miners worked in shifts, some worked night shifts, others, day shifts. If a miner came home to his house and family and saw black foot prints in his house then he knows his wife was cheating on him with another miner who has the opposite shift. And clearly the other guy has black feet from working in the mine.

Esa mina es una patas negras maraca. Se está comiendo el pololo de su amiga.
That chic's a slutty patas negras. She's getting it on with her friend's boyfriend.

Chilenismo, coloquial

Saturday, June 21, 2008

peor es mascar lauchas

peor es mascar lauchas - this literally means: "but chewing mice is worse". hahaha. Now that sounds funny. It actually means "it could be worse".

moi: "Pucha ahora que empezé a hacer clases de inglés me está costando hablar en español. No domino ninguno de los idiomas."
Christopher: "Pero peor es mascar lauchas."
moi: Queeeeé???

me: "Now that I'm teaching English, I'm having a hard time speaking in Spanish. I'm not good at either language."
Christopher: "But chewing mice is worse." (jejeje)
me: What???

-Aprendí esta expresión anoche. Mi amigo el Christopher ocupa todo una galaxia de expresiones interesantes.

Chilenismo?, coloquial? podría cacho

Friday, June 20, 2008


Coa - el idioma del flaite. Se ha prestado muchas expresiones al chilensis, i.e., apretar cachete, chamullar, cachá, por lo menos según este sitio web. Dudo de que todas las expresiones en mi blog sean de coa, pero muchas, sí, deben de ser originalmente del coa. Coa is pretty un-understandable to your average Chileno/extranjero, like me. I found this on Youtube. Here's a kid speaking coa, and the judge's translation.

Thursday, June 19, 2008


seco/a - adjetive, really good at something

Tiger Woods es seco para el golf.
Tiger Woods is an awesome golfer.

Tiger Woods es seco.
Tiger Woods is awesome.

Chilenismo, coloquial

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

ponerse jugoso/dar jugo

ponerse jugoso - is like when you get drunk and take no social cues and start babbling and perhaps doing really annoying things, you don't have to be drunk for this to happen, but it is quite common among drunks

Cuando ese weón se cura, se pone jugoso. Da lata salir consigo.
When that dude gets drunk, he is so annoying. It's no fun going out with him.

dar jugo - when you make a big deal of something or do waaay more than necessary and then perhaps realize you were wrong. For example the other day some friends were going to drop me off near metro Santa Lucia and all of a sudden I realized we were in Parque Bustamante, heading towards Ñuñoa, and I was like, shit, we're passed where I wanted to get out. So I start babblying "Where are we? Is Santa Lucía a street as well as a metro station? Stop, stop the car. I'll get out here." And then two seconds later I realized we were in Bellas Artes, not Bustamante and that we still weren't at Santa Lucia. So then I said, ah, no, todo bien, estoy puro dando jugo, sory.

Chilenismos, coloquiales

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

como las weas

como las weas - shittily, badly

En el examen me fue como las weas.

The exam went shittily. -- ojo Spanish speakers, or non-native English speakers-- I just invented the word shittily. It's generally "shitty", which is an adjetive, but I added an "tily" to make it an adverb. But I like how it sounds.

sinónimos: como el loli, como el forro, como la callampa, como la corneta, como el hoyo -- the first four: loli, callampa, corneta - are all alusions to the penis, forro - refers to the skin around the penis and I think hoyo refers to the butthole and I'm pretty sure las weas are the testicles. So yes, these are vulgar expressions.

Chilenismo, vulgar

Monday, June 16, 2008


chamullento - adjetivo, sustantivo, un weon chamullento cuenta hartos chamullos, a guy who bullshits a lot

sinónimos - mentiroso
a sort of similar word cahuinero

Compré unas paltas a un vendedor callejero y el chamullento me empezó a contar cahuines..que su hijo está en Paris, pololeando con una francesa y estudiando un doctorado, que se decidió quedar allá, que el otro hijo estudió derecho en la U de Chile y le ha ido la raja...y la cacha de la espada y la pata de la guagua. Ese es un weon chamullento.

gesto técnico - there's body language that goes with this expression. Often when someone starts inventing bullshit stories, one of the people listening will stick out their index finger and thumb in a sort of v and put their hand under their chin with an facial expression that is critical of the weon chamullento. If I find a photo of this I will attach it here. It means the person talking is full of shit.

Chilenismo, coloquial


cuático/a - raro, loco, neurótico normalmente con una conotación peyorativa. Strange, bizarre, (with a pejorative connotation) crazy, weird, neurotic.

La mina cuática, llegó al carrete y estaba pelando cable todo el rato de los quicos y los pitucos y que se nació en cuna de oro, y la wea. La mina rayada, me importa callampa el tema.

The crazy chik showed up at the get together and was babbling on the whole time about rich people born in a "golden crib". The chik was crazy, I don't give a shit about that.

Chilenismo, coloquial

Friday, June 13, 2008

puta la weá

puta la weá - a useful expresion that literally means, more or less "slut the crap". haha. That's funny. Anyway, it actually means like "shit" or "fuck". Like when something goes a way you don't want it to, like you fail an exam or something, you use "puta la weá".

sinonimos de puta la wea: por la cresta, mierda

Chilenismo, vulgar

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

care palo

care palo - adj, short for cara de palo, or stick face, meaning a person who can lie without making an expression on his face that gives him/her away. It means a person is disrespectful, fresh, shameless. Basically un weón care palo, given the opportunity, will screw you over. A jerk or an asshole.

You know how eskimos have like 20 words for snow, because it's an important part of their culture? Well Chileans have a ton of words for care palo because the country's loaded with them: caradura, sinvergüenza, patudo, fresco, vivo, pícaro, atrevido, barsa, roto.

Near synonym: chanta

Ese weón care palo me cagó con la vuelta.
That jerk screwed me over with the change.

Chilenismo, coloquial, informal

Tuesday, June 10, 2008


pituto - person who hooks you up with a good job or gets you into a good school here in Chile. Ithink pituto literally means "enchufe", plug-in, but I'm not sure. Here I came across a more lengthy definition in Spanish. It's similar to "movida", except pituto is someone who solves a larger problem like getting a job or getting into a good University, where as a movida gets you less important things like good inexpensive marijuana, pirated movies, etc.

Here's a song by Sexual democracia about pitutos:

Chilenismo, coloquial/normal

Monday, June 9, 2008


una movida - someone who gets you something cheap or easily, a hook-up. Suprisingly to me, this expression isn't in the diccionario de modismos chilenos.

"Tengo una güena movida para películas piratas."
"I've got a good hookup for pirated movies."

Chilenismo, coloquial

Sunday, June 8, 2008

galletas gritón

Se está poniendo a comer galletas gritón. - He's shooting off at the mouth.

There are cookies here by the brandname Triton. So when someone starts eating gritón (scream) cookies that means they are shooting off at the mouth.

Chilenismo, coloquial


picada - a restaurant that's really cheap, but quite the DMC says, it can apply to any place that provides cheap services. I generally hear the term used to describe restaurants.

picante -un restoran barato que no tiene ni un brillo, basically a cheap, but nasty restaurant

Chilenismo, coloquial

Thursday, June 5, 2008

pelar cable

pelar cable - to babble incoherently about something for a long time

Juan Pablo se curó y está pelando cable como loco. Te recomiendo que no le acerques.
John Paul is drunk and babbling incoherently and profusely. I recommend you don't go near him.

sinónimo - dar jugo

Chilenismo, coloquial

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

volarse la raja

volarse la raja - to kick someone's ass

"Nos volaron la raja."
They kicked our asses.

"Me voló la raja."
She kicked my ass.

"Le volé la raja."
I kicked her ass.

Chilenismo, vulgar

Tuesday, June 3, 2008


guatear - to die (like in the sense that a party or conversation dies)

El programa de la tele guateó.
The television program died.

El paro en Valpo guateó.
The [student] strike in Valparaíso died.

other spellings: watió
sinónimos - funar, cagar, sonar - I've heard my suegros use this one, so it might be vintage, like "groovey" is in English.

Chilenismo, coloquial

Monday, June 2, 2008

espérame un cachito

espérame un cachito - wait a second, hold on a second

Espérame un cachito, me voy a dar una mano de gato.

Shall we go?
Wait just a second, I'm going to put on some makeup.

Chilenismo, coloquial

Sunday, June 1, 2008

no weí

no weí - no kidding, no shit?, really?

When I first heard this expression I thought the Chileans had borrowed our English expression "No way", because they are pretty much synonyms. However, "no weí" came from "no webeas" or "no me hueveas".

"Weon, se acabó el hielo."
"No weí. Mierda...pero Lucho viene en camino, llamale y dile que pase a comprar."

"Dude, we're out of ice."
"No kidding? Shit...but Lucho is on his way, call him and tell him to buy some."

Chilenismo, coloquial