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This thread shall be dedicated to any problems you may have with understanding English slang expressions, or any kind of English that you simply can't find in any dictionary.
Talking about dictionaries, the first website one should go to in search of the meaning of a slang expression is this: http://www.urbandictionary.com/

I myself also need a bit help understanding some lines.
The lyrics I'm talking about is one verse of this song: http://lyricstranslate.com/en/Shaggy-Donya-lyrics.html

"Lovin’ me Lovin’ this is where you belong
and if you belov me havin sing’ this a song
Yo’love life ‘woul you kinda strong
Love a fill yo just like a bomb
Tell yo feelings i kno you can’t hide them
You love me so love i give it derive
Girl like i you, yo’r sexy vibe… gotcha
Come on!"

Could anyone please translate this into "proper" English for me?

Moderator amoRaЯoma
imaginea utilizatorului evfokas
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This isn't slang but bad english, this is what I understand
Loving me, love, this is where you belong
and if you do love having me singing this very song
would you (love) your love life kind of strong?
Love will fill you just like a bomb
Tell (me) your feelings, i know you can’t hide them
You love me, I love you, so give it a try
Girl I like you, your sexy vibe… got you
Come on!"

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Okay, thank you very much!

Well, in this case I also wasn't sure if people really talk like that...

I also understood about the same as you, so I guess it should be more or less right. The 2nd and 6th line were the most difficult... "derive" meaning "a try", I would never have found out that myself.

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Normally people use shorter words, accent, and colloquial expressions, but don't abuse the syntax as much. As for derive I think its d-rive (deerive)

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This is Jamaican English. You would really need a Jamaican to get a correct transcription. The one posted here and all over the internet is full of mistakes. I can't understand a lot of what he's singing because it's so fast, but here is my version (also without trying to write Jamaican pronunciation, for instance 'filling' sounds like 'feeling' and 'can't' sounds like 'cyan't', but I just use the normal English spellings).

"Lovin’ me Lovin’ this is where you belong"
[could be read as 'loving me, loving, this is where you belong' or 'loving my loving, this is where you belong']
and if you be love me, me have you singing this-a song
[and if you are (over a long period of time) loving me, I'll have you singing this song]
Me love life with you kinda strong
[My love life with you is kind of strong]
Love-a filling me just like a bomb
[Love is filling me just like a bomb]
Tell my feelings you know me can’t hide
[(I'll) tell you my feelings, you know I can't hide (them)]
You love me so love i give it derive
[Can't make out all the words in this line, but the last one might be 'right' or 'ride']
Girl I like-a you, you've a sweet sexy vibe… gotcha
Come on!

As I said, this is only my best guess and you would need someone fluent in Jamaican English to get a proper transcription of this.

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Okay, thanks for explaining and for trying to help!

I have another word that I don't understand:
"bouse"
From this lyrics: http://lyricstranslate.com/en/washing-tones-dr-house-lyrics.html

I found these explainations
http://www.thefreedictionary.com/bouse
http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=bouse
but all don't fit in the context. I guess the line " C’mon let’s bouse" could mean something like "let's start", "let's go" but this is complete guesswork.

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It should be "bounce" which means "Let's go"

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Thanks! It would really fit the context. But now someone told me that the right lyrics are "booze", or do you have official lyrics that say it's "bounce"?

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EDIT: I have another question: What does "whoopy" mean?
I have it from here: http://lyricstranslate.com/en/Tenacious-D-Tribute-lyrics.html
I also found the spelling "whippet", but that doesn't make much sense.

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Es scheint mir, ist dies vielleicht daher:
»Her stage name, Whoopi, was taken from a whoopee cushion; she has stated that “If you get a little gassy, you've got to let it go. So people used to say to me, 'You're like a whoopee cushion.' And that's where the name came from.”«
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whoopi_Goldberg
Und »whoopee cushion«:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whoopee_cushion

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Interesting idea, thanks, but I don't think this makes any more sense.

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I think it means "whip-like tail" In the souther USA, some people say Whoop instead of whip, as in, "Your Father's going to whoop your butt when he finds out!" But the word "whoopy" is made up. It means the demon had a "whip tail"

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I thought that it might be something like that. Just, the word "whip" already is there in this same line...
Well, I guess you are right, thank you!

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1 traducere
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Thats not Jamaican english, its ghetto english. Or spoken more in parts of the United states more poverty stricken.
Booze is alcohol
and your song:
Love how I love you, you belong with me
and if you like this song ( if you love me)
We could have a good life
our love will overcome you
Tell me what you're feeling i know you want to
You love me so i love you back
I love you,You're sexy

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The song is a parody, and 'whoopy' is a word used because it sounds ridiculous. I agree that it's supposed to mean a whip-like tail, and implicitly, one that could be used to inflict some whoop-ass (a beating).

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@fulicasenia: Thanks for explaining.
I guess when two people here are saying that it means that it will be right most likely.

@dkizzy: Why do you think that it is no Jamaican English?

_____

And I have a new question. This time not quite slang but just an expression that I don't understand:

In this lyrics: http://lyricstranslate.com/en/and-also-trees-genevieve-lyrics.html there is the line "Turns back the curtains to the day"
I know that this can mean "Turns back the curtains until the day (when...)".
But I think it can also mean
either
"Turns back the curtains when morning has broken"
or
"Turns back the curtains to let the daylight in"

Can someone tell me please what it means?

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I think it is just a poetic way of saying "she opened the curtains." Basically, she opened to curtains and saw that it was raining. This goes along with the whole depressed mood of the song.

As to the first question, I think it is meant to be Jamaican Slang whether it really is or not. He is saying it with a Jamaican Accent, and the pattern is similar to raggae. I've never heard anyone in the US speak this way unless they were imitating a Jamaican Accent.

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Thanks ! I think you are right with it being just poetic but I'd like to know what it really means, though.

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it definitely means opening them. The day (in the sense of, 'it's day out, it's light,' rather than a date or 24 hours) is what the person is opening them to, like opening the door to a stranger, or leaving yourself open to the possibilities.

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Well, I didn't ask what "turns back the curtains" means, I already knew that part.

But thanks for explaining the other half, too ^^

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"Turns back the curtains to the day" is not an expression. It literally just means "Open the curtains" It's like "turn back the covers on the bed"

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Going to the other direction, I’m wondering what would be a good, compact English equivalent for the Finnish noun humala, which basically means “the state of being drunk”, or “drunkenness”.

I mean, something casual enough which wouldn’t sound like fancy medical or legal jargon (such as “intoxication” or “inebriation”) but would better fit in a modern informal, colloquial context and register. And at the same time, something that doesn’t feel like too much of a slang term so that it could be used flexibly in various “neutral” informal contexts.

I’m having this problem with not only one but with two songs now (click, click)... probably drawing blank only because I’m not a native speaker and not because the English language wouldn’t have such a word!

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I'm no native speaker but I think I've already seen the expressions "intoxicated" and "inebriated" in quite slangy contexts...
but, sorry, I don't know any better expressions.

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'Drunkenness' is exactly the right word if it's 'sacred.' I would probably say 'waiting for a buzz' in the other song because it's a much more informal, slangy context. The English language delights in a thousand words for intoxication, so rather than recommend one all-purpose one to you, I would encourage you to find a different one to use every time Smile

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fulicasenia wrote:
I would probably say 'waiting for a buzz' in the other song because it's a much more informal, slangy context.

Thanks. I went for “waiting for the buzz to set in”, at least for the time being. It should be noted I think the protagonist of the song wants to get wasted “proper” – at least so much as to feel emotionally numb – so mere light state of tipsiness will not be enough here. Do you think “buzz” is a strong enough word for this situation?

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"Waiting to be blitzed" would express waiting to be really, really drunk.

To make one last comment about Shaggy, he was born in Jamaica, so it's likely he uses some Jamaican slang/expressions in his lyrics. I know his other music, though not that song in particular. But as it's already been interpreted to death in this thread, I'll refrain from posting another version. Smile

evfokas wrote:
Normally people use shorter words, accent, and colloquial expressions, but don't abuse the syntax as much. As for derive I think its d-rive (deerive)

I just wanted to add something - in some neighborhoods (generally urban areas) here in America, people really do speak the way some of those song lyrics sound. My best friend is black, and when I visit her dad's store, sometimes the things they start saying to each other sound like a different language. I suppose this is what is considered "Ebonics" today, because for all the slang I've grown up exposed to, I can't even understand what they say 100%.

When I worked with a local program called Literacy Volunteers, I was teaching English to two women from Kosovo. In my training classes, I tried to share slang/colloquial resources with the class, but the teacher didn't approve of that. I can't understand why - I think it's essential for a foreigner to be aware of it in any country: not swear words and things like that, but phrases they'll encounter even with adults ("hey", "what's up?", "how's it goin?", etc). Languages are living; they don't follow textbooks!

Maybe the teachers suffered so much to learn "proper" English that they can't stand any other form of the language Smile.

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Lumekuninganna, you're right. I live in an area that would be considered by most to be "urban" and when I was in high school, you would hear a lot of stuff like that for example, I saw in a previous post "waiting to be blitzed" which as I always understood it means either "waiting to be drunk/high (on marijuana)." And you really do hear stuff like that here in the US. Now I think a lot of rap music takes it to the absolute extreme so I wouldn't expect a non-native to understand rap music that well (there are some rap songs that even I don't understand). Something that has become my biggest pet peeve recently though, is that in rap music and in urban areas you can hear people say "I be" instead of "I am" or "I'm" so that's just another example.

And I really agree with you, Lumekuninganna that slang and idioms are an important part of learning a language and you can't just ignore them.

sydrhill wrote:
Something that has become my biggest pet peeve recently though, is that in rap music and in urban areas you can hear people say "I be" instead of "I am" or "I'm" so that's just another example.

Oh, that's just pirate grammar. Laughing out loud

I like when it becomes "imma be" - "Imma be goin' to the store, boo!" For some reason, I find slang funny. I used to be a lot more bothered by Americans not knowing proper English, but not these days. Smile

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Haha although I do love it when people call each other "boo." It's just a funny sounding word Laughing out loud "Imma be" doesn't bother me that much because it's more about a bunch of words smushed together whereas "I be" for "I am" is just grammatically incorrect but I'm such a huge nerd that I'm really bothered by improperly conjugated verbs Big smile

Also I didn't know that grammar like that had a name Laughing out loud Argh matey, we be on our way to get our buried treasure Big smile