[#015] ¡Ahí lo tenés al pelotudo!

After being away for a while, here we have a new rioplatense word that is worth learning: “pelotudo“.


This is a very commonly used word in informal contexts in the River Plate area, and it has actually the same meaning as another word that we have already discussed in a previous entry. Can you guess? I’m talking about the word “boludo“.

Just like “boludo“, the word “pelotudo” has exactly the same literal meaning: “someone with big balls”. But it is used only as an insult, with the meaning of “fool” or “dumbass”. You might remember that “boludo” can also be used to refer to someone in a friendly manner, totally devoid of its negative connotation, just like “dude” or “mate”. However, that is not usually the case for the word “pelotudo“. Even if your friends won’t probably get mad at you for calling them “pelotudos“, remember it will always mean “idiot” or “fool”, with different degrees of aggressiveness, of course, depending on the intonation, situation, etc. For example:

    No seas pelotudo y dejá de llorar.
    Don’t be silly and stop crying.

    Ah, ¡creí que era verdad! Soy un pelotudo
    Oh, I thought it was true! I’m so stupid.

    ¡Qué pelotudo que sos!
    You’re such a dumbass!

I will now share with you a short scene taken from a well-known Argentine comedy film: Esperando la carroza (“Waiting for the Hearse”). This isn’t actually a very recent movie. It’s from 1986, but it has become a cult classic and it very well depicts several cultural aspects and stereotypes of the traditional rioplatense society. So if you want to learn a bit more about rioplatófonos and you don’t mind watching a movie with no astonishing special effects, I highly recommend it!

Anyway, here’s the scene:

And here’s a transcription of the dialogue, plus an approximate translation afterwards:

    —¡Ahí lo tenés al pelotudo! *tocan bocina*
    —¿A mí?
    —¡Cacho! Vos sos Cacho, ¿no? Nosotros somos tus tíos. ¿Te acordás?
    —Uhh… ¡La puta que los parió! Maricones, ahora van a ver… *pincha la pelota* Para que aprendan, ¡hijos de puta!
    —¿La viste a tu abuela?
    *los chicos tiran piedras a Cacho*
    —¡Paren! ¡Paren, carajo!
    —Ya van a ver cuando los agarre.
    —Pará, no te calentés. Pará, escuchame. ¿La viste a tu abuela?
    —Mi madre. La madre de tu mamá.
    —¡Será posible! ¿No sabés lo que es una abuela?
    —¿Dónde está tu mamá?
    —Fue a comprar comida.
    —Bueno, escuchame. Cuando vuelva, que llame urgente a la casa del tío Sergio.
    —¿Cuál tío Sergio?

    —There you have him, the dumbass! *they sound the horn*
    —(Are you calling) me?
    —Cacho! You are Cacho, right? We are your uncles. Do you remember (us)?
    —Ohh… Mother fuckers! Faggots, you’ll see now… *stabs the ball* You’ll know better (next time), sons of a bitch!
    —Have you seen your grandmother?
    *kids throw stones at Cacho*
    —Stop! Stop it, fuck!
    —You’ll see (what I’ll do) when I get ya…
    —Hey, don’t get mad. Calm down, listen to me. Have you seen your grandmother?
    —My mother. Your mum’s mother.
    —Do you REALLY not know what a grandmother is?!
    —Where is your mum?
    —She’s gone to get some food.
    —Ok, listen to me. When she gets back, (tell her to) call uncle Sergio as soon as possible.
    —Uncle Sergio who?

From this dialogue and the way Cacho is characterized in this scene of the movie I guess you can probably gather why they call him “pelotudo“, right?

If there are other words or expressions from this scene that you would like me to cover here, leave a note in the comments section. For now, I just want to focus a bit on the verb “calentarse“. As you can see in the translation provided, when the man says “no te calentés” to Cacho, he is telling him to calm down, to not get mad or angry.

I guess this may not be exclusive to castellano rioplatense, but I still want to point it out as this word may cause some trouble if used in the wrong contexts. Of course, “calentarse” can be used in its literal meaning of “getting hot”. So someone could be “calentándose” if they are next to a heater or in the sunlight. But if someone “se calienta“, it can also mean that they are getting angry, as in the case of Cacho when the kids throw stones at him… Or also that they are getting aroused or turned on! So be careful with these three meanings and how you use this verb.

And to finish this post, we can use the two new expressions together in one sentence: ¡No te calentés, pelotudo! 😉

But hey, more than one translation is possible there…


[#014] ¡Vamos, Argentina!

If you’ve been following the football/soccer World Cup (or Mundial de fútbol), you’ll probably know this already. But if you haven’t, then here’s the news: Argentina made it to the finals! 😀


Argentina played a tough game today, but still got to beat the Neatherlands on penalties. A very special victory for us Argentinians, as we are also celebrating Independence day today! Now we will have to face Germany on Sunday and fight for the first place of this World Cup.

In general, this sport is very important to most Argentinians and it’s considered one of our biggest passions in the whole country. So in this entry I thought we could see how to cheer for Argentina just like a true rioplatófono, and learn a couple of words along the way. I’ll share with you, then, a video in which Dustin Luke, an American vlogger, teaches a friend of his a couple of typical Argentinian football chants.

Dustin Luke lived in Buenos Aires for a while and that’s why he speaks Spanish with a rioplatense accent, and a really good one indeed! If this is the first time you see him, you should check out his channel and have fun with his cool videos about us and our language variety. Anyway, these are the two football chants he’s singing on the video:

    ¡Vamos, vamos, Argentina,
    vamos, vamos a ganar,
    que esta barra quilombera
    no te deja, no te deja de alentar!

    Olé, olé, olé,
    olé, olé, olé, olá.
    Olé, olé, olé,
    cada día te quiero más.
    Soy argentino,
    es un sentimiento,
    no puedo parar.

As you can see, the lyrics are quite straightforward. “Go, go, Argentina, let’s win!”. But wait a second, what does “barra quilombera” mean? The word “barra” in this case refers to a group of people, especially friends or guys who have something in common. Here, “esta barra” would be all the supporters or fans of the team.

A “quilombo” is a mess. Any messed-up situation can be described as a “quilombo“. For example, if an Argentine guy walks into a very noisy or disorganised place, they are bound to say “¡Qué quilombo, boludo!“. By extension, difficult problems can also be described in this way.

A “barra quilombera” is then a wild crowd that, in this case, passionately supports or cheers for a football team.

The rest of the words used in the chants are not exclusive to the River Plate variety, but you can always leave a comment if you’d like me to explain something else.

By the way, did you notice how Dustin pronounced “vamos, vamos, Argentina“? The letter “s” in the first “vamos” is not so easy to hear, as it is followed by a consonant! 😉 We’ve already discussed that on a previous entry.

Anyway, before finishing this post, there’s a couple of extra words used in the video that I’d like to mention:

    0:09: hinchar (to cheer on, to support)
    0:15: remera (t-shirt)

At the beginning of the video Dustin uses the word “hinchar“. Apart from its general meaning of “to swell or cause to swell”, in the River Plate area this works just like the verb “alentar” (to support or encourage), which actually appears in the first chant. Right after that, he uses another rioplatense word: “remera“. This is the usual word we use to refer to a t-shirt, but when we talk about a football jersey in particular we can also say “camiseta“.

Alright, that’s all for today. And now that you’ve learnt our typical football chants, I hope that you will hinchar por Argentina on Sunday! 😉 ¡Vamos, Argentina!