Sunday, August 1, 2010


At a certain point at the café (see this post), a server stepped up to the plate and shut off the TV show, much to the joy of the customers present, many of whom (myself included) cheered and thanked the good soul who had saved us all.

A lady sitting next to us then turned and said in English, “They’re so boring!” My student/friend and I had been talking in English all along, and that was the lady’s way to let us know that she too was relieved that Chitãozinho & Xororó had finally been shut off.

The only problem was her word choice. I understood that she meant to say that the music was ‘chata’. As it turns out, the adjective ‘chato’ in Portuguese has a multitude of meanings, each calling for a different translation in English.

Let’s look at some possibilities:

1. chato = entediante; monótono; desinteressante; sem graça.

What a boring class. I almost fell asleep.
[Que aula chata. Eu quase dormi.]

I don’t like the living room. It’s boring. We need to get some decoration.
[Não gostei da sala de estar. Ela está sem graça. A gente precisa arrumar alguns enfeites.]

2. chato = irritante; enervante; incômodo; azucrinante.

I have this annoying pain in my feet. (to annoy = irritar)
[Estou com uma dorzinha chata nos pés]

3. chato = embaraçoso; desconcertante.

I couldn’t remember her name. What an awkward / embarrassing situation!
[Eu não lembrava o nome dela. Que situação chata!]

4. chato = exigente; difícil de satisfazer.

My daughter is a picky eater.
[Minha filha é chata para comer.]

5. chato = pessoa inoportuna.

What a pain that guy is. Why does he always have to tell his stupid jokes?
[Que cara chato! Por que será que ele sempre tem que contar uma piada sem graça?]

As for the lady sitting next to us at the café, what she probably meant to say about Chitãozinho & Xororó was that they were annoying. A possible phrase she could have used is:

“How annoying they are!”

That’s it, folks! Till next time!


Wil said...

Edu, veja aqui um excelente exemplo de annoying que você pode usar com seus alunos, como eu venho usando com os meus:
Há uma toda uma série de vídeos com esse personagem, cada um melhor que o outro. Divirta-se!

Eduardo de Araújo said...

Gosh, that orange IS annoying! I poked around that channel, it does seem to have good material for classes. Will look into more carefully. Thanks for sharing