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Instituto Cervantes
 

Street sellers, Guatemala

Spanish Colloquial Phrases and Expressions

121Spanish staff have collected some colloquial Spanish phrases used in some parts of the Spanish-speaking world, particularly in Guatemala. We hope you find these colloquialisms interesting and useful.

Frases coloquiales y Guatemaltequismos

  1. Regalar: to give something
    Ex: ¿Me regala la cuenta? (Can you bring me the bill?)
  2. Chela: beer poporopos: popcorn
    Ex: Consumí una chela y unos poporopos (I had beer and popcorn.)
  3. Cachar: to understand. To get the hidden idea
    Ex: Perdone, no había cachado. (I am sorry, I didn`t get the idea.)
  4. Clavo: shame, embarrasment
    Ex: Qué clavo (Shame on me. How embarrassing!)
  5. La onda: the idea, the situation, the mood
    Ex: Se me fue la onda (I didn't pay attention, I was distracted.)
  6. Simón: to say Si, Yes
    Ex: -Me regalas un beso…? –Simón (-Would you kiss me?... -Yes)
  7. Casaca: a lie, loquacity
    Ex: Ese chico tiene mucha casaca. (That guy has the gift of the gab.)
  8. Bajar libros: remember about something that was long time ago.
    Ex: Cuando vi su cara empecé a bajar libros y recordé su nombre.
    (When I saw his face, I remembered his name.)
  9. Patojo, patoja: boy, girl
    Ex: Este patojo está muy malcriado. (This boy is too spoilt.)
  10. Güiro, güira: immature boy or girl
    Ex: Daniel se comporta como un güiro. (Daniel behaves like a baby.)
  11. Chilero: nice, beautiful, cool
    Ex: ¡Qué chilero! (That`s cool!) Qué chilero tu pantalón. (Your jeans are nice.)
  12. Chulo: beautiful, nice, pretty, cute
    Ex: ¡Qué chulo tu chucho! (Your dog is so cute!)
  13. Chuchos: dogs
    Ex: Mi chucho se enfermó. (My dog got sick.)
  14. Canche: blonde, blond
    Ex: Me gustan los canches. (I like blond guys.)
  15. Chirmol: a mix-up, disaster. To get yourself comfused.
    Ex: Nuestra charla se convirtió en un chirmol. (Our talk was a disaster.)
  16. Correr la bola: to spread gossip around.
    Ex: ¡Se corre la bola que te casas! (The gossip of you`re getting married is being spread!)
  17. Dos que tres: so-so, more or lesss
    Ex: Esto está dos que tres (This is so-so.)
  18. Cuajarse: to sleep like a log. A good nap.
    Nos cuajamos por la tarde. (We slept in the afternoon.)
  19. Ser bien sheca: to be a very intelligent and clever person. Bright, smart. Ex: Mi hermano es bien sheca para la manejar la computadora.
    (My brother is very clever with the computer.)
  20. Shola: head
    Ex: Me duele horrible la shola. (I have a terrible headache.)
  21. Shucos: hot-dogs
    Ex. Estos shucos están deliciosos. (These hot-dogs are delicious.)
  22. Gacho: bad things or situations, bad quality.
    Ex: Que gacho tu televisor que se arruinó. (Your TV that´s broken is poor quality.)

  23. Licas: movies
    Ex: Me gustan las licas de terror. (I like horror movies.)
  24. A puro tubo (a PT): something that you MUST do. It is an obligation.
    Ex: Mañana tengo que ir a puro tubo a la universidad. (I must go to college tomorrow.)
  25. Sholco: without teeth.
    Ex: Mi pobre chuco ya está tan ruco que está sholco. (My poor dog is so old that he has no teeth.)
  26. Ruco: old person
    Ex: Mi ruco me prestó su carro. (My old dad lent me his car.)
  27. Amishado: shy, timid, insecure
    Ex: Tu hermanito es amishado cuando te visito. (Your little brother is kind of timid when I visit you.)
  28. Shute: nosy, snoopy, curious
    Ex: Mis primos son shutes, siempre se meten en mi vida. (My cousins are nosy and they always get into my life.)
  29. Shuco: dirty, lousy
    Ex: Ese vagabundo es un shuco. (That beggar is such a lousy person.)
  30. Chiviado, chiviada: embarrased, blushing, shy person.
    Ex: Mi novio estaba chiviado frente a mis padres. (My boyfriend was kind of embarrassed in front of my parents.)
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