Posted by: janecronin | October 6, 2011

Spanish expression – a politician’s nightmare

Well I wouldn’t like to be a politician at the moment, but I’m always happy listening to them being dissected on radio and television.  We’ve got a lot more of this activity coming up with 20N just around the corner.

A criticism which gets levelled on regular occasions is that Sr. X (whichever politician you don’t like) is “nadando entre dos aguas” (swimming between two waters).

We  have two expression in English that mean the same – “sitting on the fence” (which sounds SO uncomfortable) and “hedging your bets” (which at least sounds more strategic). 

In a very black/white, left/right culture “nadar entre dos aguas” is roundly condemned.




  1. Steve says promising not to get involved in dissecting ZP’s destruction of a nation on the verge of greatness over eight short years.

    …or a third one (which is the one I’d have translated it as) “The little xxxx is trying to chase with the hares and course with the hounds”

    I wonder which limp-wristed apologist we are talking about today!

    The two you have used are passive whereas these excuses for human beings are IMHO (jejeje) ACTIVELY following two tracks.

    I agree completely that Spain is a very black/white, left/right culture and trying to “have your cake and eat is” not an edifying sight. In the UK, I COULD argue that I’d have no idea what Clegg’s thoughts are on, say, “Sport for All” and I don’t suppose he does until Cameron tells him. (“The conservatives are the party of the NHS” …… came as a surprise. Next he will tell me that Thatcher is the guest speaker at the Yorkshire Miners’ Gala.) Anyway, whether Rajoy or ZP leads us back into the Promised Land, the site of them “trying to be all things to all people” is particularly nauseating!

    So FOUR expressions that are similar to the one Spanish one. It´s why we LOVE languages ….futbolisticamente hablando! (OK lingüísticamente hablando if you prefer. Note the diaeresis and accent together – cute word!)

    • Just out of curiosity Steve, are there any politicians you actually like or respect?

      “Lingüísticamente” is a pretty good word, though a bit of a beast to type, and Google seems to think it’s Italian!!

      A friend of mine recently sent me his favourites which include: “semipeatonalización” and “desestacionalización” both of which appeared in our municipal election party manifestos.

      • Google is our friend – not!

        Cameron dropped off the list yesterday. “The tories are the party of the NHS” (I suppose that Thatcher is the guest of honour at the Durham Miners’ Gala next year!) The other jokers in the UK were never on it! Where are the REAL men/women of principle. Healey, Wilson, Heath, Steele, Owen etc?

        Elena Salgado – seems quite genuine. (Probably studied at RADA)
        Esperanza Aguirre – despite her origins – I think she talks from the heart and does NOT nadar entre dos aguas – I think people know where they stand with her.
        Eduardo Zaplana – met him a couple of times and was impressed
        Pedro Hernández Mateo – as a man of the people – and a man who took Torrevieja from Toy Town to Boom Town
        Rubalcaba – great brain, outstanding thinker.
        Patxi López – brains and cojones. Respect
        Elena Valenciano – bright …dodgy haircut
        José Bono – experienced, slick operator must be hugely embarrassed by ZPs disasters
        José Blanco – wicked sense of humour. Good debater. Not sure how genuine he is.
        Esperanza Oña +
        Monica Lorente+
        Ana Obregón+
        Pilar Sánchez Muñoz +

        Los Lunnis……I am constantly saying that would have done a better job than the current comedian.

        + hottie – politicamente incorrecto, Esteve!

  2. Ok … I asked …. and there’s two or three there I can agree with
    :-0 !!

  3. Really, can I start a rumour about you and some of the hotties!!!

    Can, I claim you are a staunch support of young Monica!

    …or are you going to nadar entre dos aguas.

    You will note no place for ZP, Rajoy, Chaves, Trinidad Jiménez, Camps, Rita Barberá …and thousands of others!

    I should of course have added Felipe González who even semi-retired could do better than Zappy.

  4. Well, well and here we have a very interesting Spanish expression hot off the lips of González Pons at the PP National Conference “Defendemos el Estado del Bienestar con uñas y dientes” http://

    So now we know that that Tories in the UK (well, England!) and the PP are the parties of the welfare state.

    In the insincerity-meter (bring back John Snow) it shows the Tories 1299 points, the PP just ahead with 1431 unlikely claims. Although I do think the “con uñas y dientes is nicer than with “tooth and nail”.

    Voy a practicar, Señora, voy a fregar con uñas y dientes. Voy a repitir con uñas y dientes. Sounds just as insincere!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: