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All About, Lesson 13 - Ten Romanian Phrases Your Teacher Will Never Teach You!
Eric: Hi everyone and welcome back to RomanianPod101.com. This is All About, Lesson 13 - Ten Romanian Phrases Your Teacher Will Never Teach You! I’m Eric.
Raluca: Hey, bună! Sunt Raluca! Oh Eric, this lesson is really fun! It’s because we’re going to teach our listeners some phrases a normal teacher will never teach them!!
Eric: Ah, you mean Romanian slang!
Raluca: Yes!
Eric: But these sentences and words are still standard Romanian, right?
Raluca: Of course. Romanians understand and use them in daily life...and we can hear them in comedy TV shows as well.
Eric: We’ll hear some of the most fun and useful expressions taken from daily Romanian conversations.
Raluca: Because our listeners know how important it is to get past the slang barrier.
Eric: These phrases are hard to find in a dictionary and would rarely be mentioned during a Romanian class.
Raluca: So, let’s jump in!
Eric: Yeah, let’s get started!
Eric: The first word we’ll go over is…
Raluca: Tip, masculine and tipă, feminine.
Eric: Meaning “guy” or “girl” in English.
Raluca: When referring to a third party, it is common to use un tip or o tipă. For example, Am cunoscut o tipa interesanta…
Eric: That means “I met an interesting girl.” Any other examples?
Raluca: Sure. Şeful meu este un tip sever meaning...
Eric: “My boss is a strict guy.”
Raluca: Tip replaces the word bărbat, meaning “man,” and tipă replaces the word femeie, meaning “woman.” These shorter words are easier.
Eric: You’re right! Next we have...
Raluca: Fain!
Eric: This means “cool,” right?
Raluca: Yep, in English is mainly translated as “beautiful,” “very good,” or “cool.” The plural form is faini for masculine and faine for feminine.
Eric: It can be used as an adjective or as a exclamation to express a positive opinion.
Raluca: For example, acest aparat de fotografiat este foarte fain,
Eric: “This camera is really cool.”
Raluca: When someone says Mâine merg la Sibiu...
Eric: “Tomorrow I’m leaving for Sibiu,”
Raluca: you can simply answer with ce fain! There’s also another slang expression that could replace ce fain.
Eric: Really?
Raluca: Ce tare!
Eric: Wait....Doesn’t that mean “how hard”?
Raluca: It does. Ce means “how” and tare means “hard,” so together we have “how hard.” But when used as slang, tare is mainly translated as “cool.”
Eric: So the slang expression will mean “How cool!” Is there any difference between these two?
Raluca: I would say that it really depends on each person’s vocabulary and where they grow up.Tare is used a lot in the Romanian TV comedy shows. Fain is a softer kind of slang used a lot in Transylvania.
Eric: Alright, what expression do we have next?
Raluca: Vai ş-amar.
Eric: Which literally means “oh and bitter.”
Raluca: It indicates someone, something, or a situation is really bizarre and very disappointing.
Eric: Raluca, when do we use it?
Raluca: Mmm, in many different situations. We can give our listeners a list of some of those moments when you would use Vai ş-amar! First, when you’re stuck in a traffic jam.
Eric: When you hear bad news on TV.
Raluca: When someone is acting bizarre.
Eric: When you listen to a disappointing story.
Raluca: When you’re in a crowded place.
Eric: When someone gives you poor service.
Raluca: During all those moments you can use an irritated tone and say Vai ş-amar!!
Eric:Yes, but Romanians are generally very calm people and they rarely show their irritation in public.
Raluca: Yes, even when we are irritated we do our best not to speak in a loud voice.
Eric: I like that about Romanians!
Raluca: We should move to the next phrase now.
Eric: Okay, and that is...
Raluca: Pe bune?!
Eric: This expression is translated in English mainly as “really,” “seriously,” or “for real?”
Raluca: It can be used as an exclamation, statement, or question depending on what we want to express. For example, if I say Mâine merg in Spania,
Eric: “Tomorrow I’m leaving for Spain.”
Raluca: The answer to that can be pe bune?! in order to express your astonishment.
Eric: In English we can use “for real” or “really” to emphasize an intention. Can we do that in Romanian?
Raluca: Yes. Pe bune că voi spune adevărul.
Eric “I am really going to say the truth.” Okay, it’s time for the next slang word….
Raluca: Ah, this one is very funny, gură cască!
Eric:Why is it funny?
Raluca: Because it literally means “open mouth”. This expression is the equivalent of the English “head in the clouds.”
Eric: And it is used...
Raluca: to express that the person you’re saying it to is confused, distracted or thoughtless.
Eric: For example, when someone loses or forgots something. I think I understand, because they’re looking around open-mouthed?
Raluca: See...I told you it’s funny!
Eric: Let’s hear an example of how it is used.
Raluca: Well...once I forgot my wallet and my mother said Dacă eşti gură cască...
Eric: So how do Romanian people handle this type of criticism?
Raluca: If it comes from family or close friends it’s interpreted more like “oh...we know you have your head in the clouds...we know you so well and we understand you.”
Eric: I see. So let me guess....if it comes from someone that doesn’t know you it could be interpreted as rude
Raluca: Exactly.
Eric: Okay, what do we have next?
Raluca: a reflexive verb a se prinde.
Eric: Which means “to catch himself/herself/itself.”
Raluca: When it's used as slang though, a se prinde means “to understand.” Usually it’s used when you understood an explanation or caught someone in a lie.
Eric: What if we add “no” in front?
Raluca: Well it is very simple...if we add “no,” which is nu in Romanian, it becomes nu m-am prins.
Eric: “I didn’t understand!”
Raluca: Exactly!
Eric: Okay, now, let’s go on..
Raluca: Next we have some more two-synonym slang words …Vrăjeală and abureală.
Eric: “Witchery” and “vapor”... I have to admit that these words sound very special. Are they used to scare people?
Raluca: Oh not at all... A fitting situation to use these words is when someone is saying something very odd and you don’t believe it.
Eric: For instance...
Raluca: If someone says Am auzit ca salariile vor creşte cu 10 la sută.
Eric: “I heard that the salaries will increase by 10 percent.”
Raluca: A Romanian person would probably answer vrăjeală or abureală.
Eric: Now it makes sense.
Raluca: We also can add the verb a lăsa - “to leave.”
Eric: Can we hear the expressions?
Raluca: a lăsa abureala or a lăsa vrajeala. Both are equivalent to the English expression “to stop talking nonsense.”
Eric: Alright! What’s our next slang?
Raluca: A da papucii is used when someone is ending a serious relationship.
Eric: The literal meaning is pretty funny- “to give the shoes.”
Raluca: For example, Alexandra i-a dat papucii lui George.
Eric: “Alexandra ended her relationship with George.”
Raluca: or i-am dat papucii luna trecută,
Eric: ‘I ended the relationship a month ago.”
Eric: This can be very useful when talking about relationships! What’s next?
Raluca: We have the last slang word for this lesson.
Eric: What is it?
Raluca: Baftă!
Eric: Romanians use this a lot to say “good luck.”
Raluca: Baftă! is a synonym for the Romanian word noroc which means “chance” and can be used only in casual conversations.
Eric: For example, if your friend will be taking an exam...
Raluca: You’ll say Baftă! and he’ll answer mulţumesc,
Eric: “Thank you.” Well, that’s all for this lesson. Thanks for listening, and we’ll see you next time.
Raluca: Stay tuned! La revedere!!!


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Wednesday at 6:30 pm
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Hey Listeners! Would you add another phrase to this list? Share it at the comments! 

Friday at 6:29 pm
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Hello Mortimer,

Thank you for your comment and for learning Romanian here with us.

Let us know if you have any questions.



Team RomanianPod101.com

Thursday at 6:09 pm
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After reading this lesson, I had the opportunity to exclaim "vai ş-amar" to my friendly Romanian, who replied "Don't use that words never again is very rude". I gathered it is something you would mutter under your breath rather than shout out loud.

Tuesday at 2:20 am
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Bună Myreen,

You can say ”fain” is a borrowed word, it comes from German language. This word is commonly used in Transilvania region.

If you have more questions, please let us know.

Thank you.


Team RomanianPod101.com

Sunday at 12:23 am
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Hello! Is "fain" a borrowed word? It sounds atypical Romanian. Thanks!