Learn Brazilian

14 May


By Diego


Lit. pineapple.

  • A hot potato, a hard / tough nut to crack, a problem, situation etc. that is difficult and unpleasant to deal with.

Ele é cliente de um advogado americano que tenta descascar seus abacaxis em Nova Jersey.

He is the cliente of an American lawyer who tries to solve his problems in New Jersey..

Charge do Izânio descascando o abacaxi‘To solve the problem’ is descascar o abacaxi – Lit. to cut off the skin, to peel the pineapple.

The word pepino (cucumber) is also used to mean ‘trouble’ or a ‘problem’.

Hoje eu só resolvi pepinos no escritório.
Today I just sorted out problems at the office. 

The regular word for ‘problem’ is problema but be careful! Words ending in a are usually feminine and have the articles aas (the – singular / the – plural) and  uma(a) before them. For example:

A mesa, a pasta, a lâmpada.

The table, the folder, the lamp.

As mesas, as pastas, as lâmpadas.
The tables, the folders, the lamps.

Uma mesa, uma pasta, uma lâmpada.
A table, a folder, a lamp.

But words ending in –ema are of Greek origin and are masculine. So you must always say, for example:

O problema, os problemas,  and um problema.
O sistema, os sistemas and um sistema.
O esquema, os esquemas, 
and um esquema.

If you use adjectives with these words you must also always use the corresponding masculine form. For example:

Um problema complicado.
A complicated problem.

O sistema nervoso.
The nervous system.

Os esquemas fraudulentos.
The fraudulent schemes.

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