CZ to EN: treba to jak jsem ti psal dobrou s kobrou.

Discussion in 'Vocabulary & Translation Help' started by whois_dm, May 17, 2007.

  1. whois_dm

    whois_dm Member

    treba to jak jsem ti psal dobrou s kobrou

    What does it mean?

  2. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    For example, it's like I wrote you, "[Have a] good [night sleeping] with a cobra." Dobrou s kobrou is a common expression, similar (in usage, at least) to "Don't let the bedbugs bite." See the thread: CZ to EN: dobrou s kobrou!
  3. dzurisova

    dzurisova Well-Known Member

    Oh my gosh, this language is so hard.

    I read it as

    treba to jak jsem ti psal dobrou s kobrou
    Even it like I slept you good with cobra.

    I can't possibly see how you get "Have a good night sleeping with the cobra" out of it.

    Not only is that past-tense conditional thing messing me up again, but the verb seems to be in the "I" form so it's hard for me to see that the speaker is not talking about himself sleeping rather than the listener sleeping.

    I need one of those emoticons that is pulling her hair out. Sometimes I feel like I will never learn Czech! :lol:
  4. wer

    wer Well-Known Member

    No, it is not common.
    That’s rather “a ať tě blechy štípou celou noc”, isn’t? (But I’m not sure of it since my dictionary confirms it only in one direction :wink:)

    “Třeba” means “maybe/possibly” or, like in this case, “for example”. It never means “even”.

    Your problem with the verb arises form your confusion of “spal” (=slept) and “psal” (=wrote).

    And the translation of “dobrou s kobrou” is really tricky, that’s because “dobrou” (=good) is a colloquial short for “dobrou noc” (= good night).

    BTW, the “jak” in this sentence means rather “when”. It is often used this way when giving a hint to remember something.
  5. Zeisig

    Zeisig Well-Known Member

    jsem ti psal = I wrote you
    jsem spal = I slept

    Třeba to, jak jsem ti psal "dobrou s kobrou".

    For instance that (idea, sentence, message), what I wrote you, that one with the phrase "dobrou s kobrou".

    For instance that situation (case, event), when I wrote you the message with the phrase "dobrou s kobrou".

    Do not worry, Dzurisová K.! Sometimes it is difficult to understand the SMS messages without any punctuation, especially if you do not know the context.
  6. dzurisova

    dzurisova Well-Known Member

    Oh, now it makes sense. It seems my confusion came with the quotation marks.

    I thought the part in quotes was the only translation. I didn't realize the translation started with "For example" I thought sova was saying that to whois_dm

    Now when I look at it, it makes much more sense. Thanks everyone!

    sigh of relief! :)
  7. whois_dm

    whois_dm Member

    thanks everybody!
    i think this is the closest (in the context):

    "For instance that situation (case, event), when I wrote you the message with the phrase "dobrou s kobrou"."
  8. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    Sorry, Katko! I should have separated my translation from my commentary.

    And no, I did not confuse psat with spat. I put the word "sleeping" in square brackets to indicate that it was an implied translation. The literal translation "Good with a cobra" makes no sense in English, so I liberally added a few words to try and make the meaning more clear.

    As for the "don't let the bedbugs bite" comment, I was merely pointing out the usage of the phrase, as I emphasized, not the meaning. Your phrase, wer, is definitely more close (almost exact) in meaning; however, in English I could not think of any common expression closer to "Dobrou s kobrou." But, I guess the Czech expression isn't as common as I thought it was after all.
  9. dzurisova

    dzurisova Well-Known Member

    No, but I did. :oops:
  10. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    Oh :eek: I guess I should read more carefully ...
  11. Plivnik

    Plivnik New Member

    The literal meaning is „good night with a cobra“ but it’s based on a rhyme (dobrou – s kobrou) not on accurate meaning – like British cockney, it’s a type of word humour (something like dobrý kačer/večer – good duck/night). It’s not so common and it’s quite recent „invention“. This expression usually use young people, especially when they want to be witty :roll: .

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