Spanish Lessons


Some linguistic gymnastics

Whether speaking or singing, members of Choc Quib Town are not afraid of linguistic gymnastics. The proudly Colombian crew plays with slang, made-up words, and foreign ones (as the English "Town" in their name attests). For example, listen in on these lyrics of Somos Pacíficos.

Allá rastrillan, hablan jerguidado, te preguntan si no has janguiado.
There they rub, speak slang, they ask you if you haven't hung out.
[Caption 16, Choc Quib Town > Somos Pacífico]

"Rastrillar" means "to rake," as in using a rake (un rastrillo) to clear the yard of fall leaves. But here the verb expresses just how close the bodies can get on the dancing floor. Rubbing, raking, bumping and grinding... you get the picture. Moving along, "jerguiado" comes from the noun "jerga," which is found in any basic dictionary as "slang" or "jargon." But Choc Quib Town playfully throws in the past participle of their made-up verb "jerguiar" ("to slang"). So, we could have translated "hablan jerguiado" as "they speak slanged." How slangy is that? Finally, "janguiado" is a classic example of fun with Spanglish. With "j" in Spanish pronounced like "h" in English, the verb "janguiar" is a "latinization" of the English expression "to hang out."




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