EN>CZ Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda's

Discussion in 'Vocabulary & Translation Help' started by doman, Mar 4, 2007.

  1. doman

    doman Well-Known Member

    I am not sure about these words, maybe they are AE, how do you say them in Czech ? Could someone tell me ?
    Tks a lot !
  2. Eleshar

    Eleshar Well-Known Member

    I do not know exactly... they are from colloquial English. I know only "would, should, could"

    "Would" is more or less expression of irreal action "I would be there" = +/-"I am not there" especially with some condition (hypothesis or "alternative reality"). This is more or less the same as the Czech conditional. BUT it could be simple past of the verb "will" with all its functions. "will" is verb to form future tense and "would" is verb to form "future tense related to past". "will" is also somehow synonymous to "want" (especially in negation - I do not want = absence of wanting; I will not = active un-wanting: The car won't start, The door won't open,...). So, "would" can be in Czech expressed by verb in conditional (i.e.: If I knew that I would not be there = I kdybych to věděl, nebyl bych tu), by simple future (he said he would come = řekl, že přijde) or by verb "chtít" (the car won't start = auto nechce nastartovat, I won't do that! = nechci to udělat!).

    "Should" is more or less equivalent of Czech "měl by"... it is something that someone ought to do (I should take a shower = měl bych se osprchovat). Expression of what is good and by some standards it is to be done or supposed to be done. In English, it could be also a part of conditional clasu expressing improbabilty, in this case it is translated by "náhodou" or something similar (should I not come in five minutes, don't wait for me any more = kdybych se náhodou nevrátil do pěti minut, nečekejte na mě).

    "Could" is past and conditional of "can" and is translated according to this. I do not really think that the Czech distinguishes whether something was possible and was done or was possible and was not done, so it is always "mohl/a/o (by)"
  3. dzurisova

    dzurisova Well-Known Member

    Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda is an American phrase which is related to "There's no sense crying over spilled milk".

    What it means is "Yeah, I could have (could of) done that, or I would have done that, or I should have done that but it's too late now. There's no point in focusing our attention on what we could have done or would have done or should have done.

    You can express that entire paragraph by saying "Coulda, woulda, shoulda" It is mostly used when something bad happens and that "know it all" friend of yours is telling you what you should have done. You can reply in a way that is blowing him off by or telling him to be quiet by saying, "Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda"
  4. doman

    doman Well-Known Member

    Thanks, I've got it. :D
  5. Eleshar

    Eleshar Well-Known Member


    But still I hope you all learned what I had written for you :twisted:
  6. doman

    doman Well-Known Member

    Of course I've learnt alot from your posts Martine ! I printed some from those for my Re-learning Czech, don't you mind it ? :D

    Diky moc !
  7. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    Some sample uses of the word "would" in English:

    Hypothetical: Something that could happen [or could have happened] if some condition (perhaps realistic or unrealistic) is [or had been] met.
    I would do it, but I can't. (Present/Future hypothetical)
    I would have done it, but I couldn't. (Past hypothetical)

    Unfulfilled expectation:
    He said that he would do it [, but he didn't].

    Expressing willingness:
    He said that he would [is willing to] do it.

    Uncertain outcome:
    He said that he would do it [, but will he?].

    Polite request:
    I would like some ice cream, please.
    Would you knock it off! (Not so polite request, somewhat sarcastic)
  8. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    Back to doman's original question, how do you say, "Woulda, coulda, shoulda" in Czech? Not literally, mind you, as I can figure that out, but rather is there an equivalent Czech phrase in common usage?
  9. Eleshar

    Eleshar Well-Known Member

    Ad Sova: good point, in fact I think there is something (not sure), but I cannot recall it... We have rather reversed sayings (sliby - chyby: someone promised something and did not do it; pozdě bych honiti: literaly "too late to chase the 'would' " :D ;...).

    I think we can say that in common usage, there is nothing like that...
  10. alenastef

    alenastef Well-Known Member

  11. wer

    wer Well-Known Member

    And I vote for pozdě bycha honiti :D. There exists also a rare version bycha za ušima hledati.

    In Czech we have also the "over spilled milk"-idioms dzurisovak wrote about.
  12. scrimshaw

    scrimshaw Well-Known Member

    To má dokonalý smysl.

    Pozdě bycha honit=too late ifs to chase

    Complainer=''If you would have bought it yesterday, we wouldn't have to be out here in this cold rain right now''.
    Defensive companion=''Yea, yea, coulda, shoulda, woulda.''

    Complainer=''Přeju si, abys to udělal včera''.
    ''Pozdě bycha honit. Počasi není tak zlé. Přestan' si stěžovat, prosím tě.''
  13. Karel_lerak

    Karel_lerak Well-Known Member

    "Kdybysem to byl věděl, tak bysem sem nechodil" from the movie "Knoflíková válka" "La Guerre des boutons" 8) - not exact, but close :roll:
    What about "povídali, že mu hráli"
  14. doman

    doman Well-Known Member

    "Tardy buffalo must drink dirty water !"

  15. scrimshaw

    scrimshaw Well-Known Member

    Možná pozdní zubr musí pít špinavou vodu, ale brzy pták dostá červ.

    But the early bird gets the worm. 8)
  16. Karel_lerak

    Karel_lerak Well-Known Member

    "Ranní ptáče dál doskáče - víc sežere a dřív chcípne"
  17. scrimshaw

    scrimshaw Well-Known Member

    Ránni ptáči dál doskáče=víc sežere a dřiv chcípne.

    some kind of warning about gluttony in that saying?

    Brzy spát, brzy se vstávat.
    Early to bed, early to rise?
  18. Eleshar

    Eleshar Well-Known Member

    No really, the first part is original, but the second is nothing but reaction of the lazy people (such as myself) to what we were told by our silly grandmothers (note that in the first part, there is a rhyme "ptáče" "-skáče" but in the second, there is not).
    Be careful about the verb "chcípnout".. as it's unpleasant sound advises, it is not very kind expression of "to die". Never use it for people, it is quite offensive. It is sometimes used as imperative ("chcípni") with meaning "I don't give a fuck to what you say".
  19. scrimshaw

    scrimshaw Well-Known Member

    ha= chcipnout can sure say alot. :lol:
    Yea, that one I should be careful with.
    Especially in the imperative.
    But, could be useful in the righ situation. 8)
  20. Karel_lerak

    Karel_lerak Well-Known Member

    chcípat=scípat is literary, if used in connection with animals

    I remember saying "chcípni potvoro!" (die bastard!) among (good and joking) friends instead of "brzy se uzdrav" (recover soon!) in a similar way as the "zlom vaz!" (break your neck!) is used (not only among actors) instead of "good luck!"

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