Portuguese Language Blog

Para Variar Posted by on Dec 20, 2010 in Learning

There’s an interesting slangy expression in Portuguese that is used to express sarcasm, and it’s a helpful one to know to throw into conversation to sound more like a native. Let’s take a look at how it’s used.

Para variar literally means “for a change,” but when used in conversation, it actually means the opposite. It’s a way to show annoyance with something that is actually the same, and the fact that it is still the same is irritating. In translation, it’s a little tricky, so you just have to take “for a change” as being completely sarcastic.

Here are some examples:

Estou em Londres! Está chovendo, para variar. I’m in London! It’s raining, for a change.

Ela está atrasada. O trânsito está muito ruim, para variar. She’s late. Traffic’s bad for a change.

Estamos satisfeitos. Comemos muito para variar. We’re full. We ate a lot for a change.

Enquanto estava na rua, meus pais ligaram dez vezes para variar. While I was out, my parents called ten times, for a change.

A praia está cheia, para variar. The beach is crowded, for a change.

Can you think of any other examples?

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  1. Jennifer Wigfield:

    I would like to hear it said . . .at least in English, intonation of the voice has a lot to do with the way we say sarcastic comments. I love sarcasm, so I was thrilled to learn how to be sarcastic in Portuguese. Thanks!