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Pé Frio is not Cold Feet! Posted by on Nov 29, 2010 in Slang, Vocabulary

The other day, I was talking to my Brazilian friend who was an English student of mine, and since then we like to speak in English so he can practice.  We were trying to figure out when to go to the beach and I told him the last few times I went to the beach, it was overcast and/or rainy.  He turns to me and says, “Ahhh, Poly, you have cold feet.”

“Oi?”

pé frio

Pé frio, translated literally is “cold feet,” so my friend had a point there, but what he didn’t know was that this same expression in English meant something completely different.

Uma pessoa que tem o pé frio (a person who has a “pé frio”), is a person who is unlucky or brings bad luck to someone or some event.

During the past World Cup, for example, everyone kept calling Mick Jagger a pé frio because whenever he was at a game supporting a team, his team would lose!

In my case, I bring myself and those around me bad luck when I go to the beach because it always rains making me ter um pé frio.

I then explained to my friend that “cold feet” means something completely different in English, and since it’s mostly used when someone is about to get married and get nervous or disheartened, for my friend to not worry that I won’t be getting cold feet anytime soon!

Can you all think of any other expressions in Portuguese and English that are the same in literal translation but not meaning?

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