Wednesday, October 3, 2012

To act like a Swede - Another Spanish Expression

It’s been a while now since I last wrote about a Spanish expression. For those of you who have been with me here for a while have heard about a few really strange expressions from a foreigner’s point of view. Such as ”It’s the milk!”, or ”Speaking with the elbows” or ”The night is in diapers”... Just to mention a few.


Anyway! Time for another one.

There is always some sort of silly rivalry between Sweden and Norway. Especially in Eurovision song contest (!) and winter sports... We also have the typical bad jokes about the Norwegian, the Dane and  the Swede and the Swede for some reason is never the smartest one. And when I heard this expression I couldn't help but smiling.
Well the expression is "Hacerse el sueco". Translated it would be something like "Pretend/act like a Swede." And what in the world does it mean to act like a Swede in Spain? From what I have been explained, it means to either be stupid or clumsy, or pretend you have no idea what's going on, when that is to your benefit. 

via
So in Spain, it's not a positive thing to hacerse el sueco!

19 comments:

  1. That is so cool and funny! Never heard about it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha, I'll tell you I was curious when I heard it the first time... "What- acting like a swede??"

      Delete
  2. whaaaaat?! I wonder where this expression stems from? haha.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha, no idea! But just that something so weird is a common expression here amuses me!

      Delete
  3. It's a funny expression for sure. But who hasn't been tempted to pretended to be Sweedish at some point? I know I have.... Normaly when someone knocks at the door trying to get you to change to another gas company when a quick "No entender" could save you from the standard sales patter!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good point Richard! For us foreigners it can be quite handy at times to hacernos el sueco :)

      Delete
  4. What a bizarre expression! Like Ashley, I'm curious to know it's origin!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Oh man!! I love these funny findings! I'm so curious where it started!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :) I googled it to see if I could find an origen, I found different explanations. But one is this: Swedish marines in Spanish harbours taking advantage of their lack of language skills to understand only what interested them... There are also some references to wars and some kind of shoes (!) but I don't find any logic in those, so I think I'll just stick with the one about the Swedes acting stupid when it's at their best interest :)

      Delete
    2. It could be translated as 'turning a deaf ear', as in 'pretending you're Sweden and you don't understand a word'.

      Oh, and the shoes aren't 'suecos' but 'zuecos' (from the latin 'soccus') - sabots.

      Delete
    3. Oops - it's "pretending you're Swedish" :-D

      Delete
    4. Thank you! I didn't understand what the shoes had to do with this expression, and it was nothing :)

      Delete
  6. Ooops, ikke akkurat smigrende for svenskene. Selv synest jeg at det er stas å bli tatt for å være svensk. Svenskene ER jo så herlig laid-back og easy-going.Og slettes ikke noe "blondere" enn oss nordmenn!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ikke akkurat smigrende, nei! Men samtidig er spanjoler flest (?) fan av IKEA og imponert over de smarte løsningene osv, og dermed i stor beundring over svenskene.. Går vel litt i rykk og napp :) Jeg tror nok heller ikke svenskene er generelt mindre smarte enn oss nordmenn, nei!

      Delete
  7. Ok, det är ju inte alls konstigt att rivaliteten mellan norrmän och svenskar fortsätter när man läser det här.
    Jag, som är svensk och har bott i BCN och San sebastián 6 ar far höra dagligen "no te hagas la sueca,ehh..." som är menat som ETT SKÄMT. Det finns manga olika teorier om var det kommer ifran men manga anser ocksa att det kan ha att gÖra med nÄr (de vackra) svenskorna kom till spanien pa 60 talet och turistade och inte latsades höra när alla spanjorerna kallade efter dem. Det har alltsa inte att göra med att vi skulle vara mindre intelligenta. Det är allts INTE korrekt att HACERSE EL SUECO betyder to be stupid or clumsy utan bara att man latsas att man inte hör eller förstar.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hei hei, mener du at JEG bidrar til rivalitet mellom nordmenn og svensker fordi jeg skriver om et uttrykk som eksisterer i dagligdagen i SPANIA (ikke i Norge)? Som du sier selv, så brukes det ofte som spøk og jeg har hørt det utallige ganger. Så jeg syntes det var underlig og underholdende og verdt en post på bloggen MIN. Jeg har kanskje et mer avslappet forhold til svensker enn du har til nordmenn? Ikke vet jeg. Men jeg beklager hvis jeg har fornærmet deg!

      Delete
  8. Hejsan! Tyckte det var intressant. Tar inte illa vid mig alls, och jag tycker inte att det här ökar rivaliteten mellan svenskar och norrmän. Det är ju ett SPANSKT uttryck! Sedan kan man ju undra var det egentligen kommer från...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Takk for hyggelig kommentar Jenny! Jeg har aldri ment noe vondt med denne posten :) Og jeg har ingenting mot svensker!!

      Delete