Como digo em inglês: É um quebra-galho

By Ana Luiza | Podcast Inglês Online

Nov 27
Podcast Inglês Online quebra galho
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Hi, everyone.

Hoje, no podcast, eu falo sobre soluções quebra-galho em inglês. Ouça lá!


Hi, everyone. You’re listening to the new episode of the Inglês Online podcast. Thank you for telling everyone you know about this podcast and, enjoy!

So today I’m going to talk about a situation that, I’m sure, everyone is very familiar with. And that’s the situation where we either don’t know how to fix something properly, or we don’t have the time to do that, or all the necessary parts, you name it.

I think we come across this type of situation fairly often, especially those of us who use software on a daily basis. We need to get something done on a text document or spreadsheet, but then we realise we don’t really know how to do it. We then try to look it up in the Help files or do a search online, but – I don’t know, we find the information confusing, incomplete, or I don’t know… just not helpful.

What to do, though, if you’re on a deadline? You have to get that table done, just the way your boss wants it! You’ve tried to find step-by-step instructions, but that didn’t work. It’s time to find a workaround now. A workaround is sort of a semi-solution, a way of fixing that problem this one time, maybe just for today. A workaround would likely not be considered a permanent solution for anything… because it’s usually not the optimal solution.

Using the example I just mentioned, let’s say your boss asked you to put together this fairly complicated table on a text document. The table isn’t very simple because some cells are supposed to contain pictures; whereas other cells are supposed to have different background colours. Yes: in total, we’re talking about fifteen images and thirty five different background colours.

Every table you’ve done so far has been black and white – so this looks fairly complex to you. Tables and text documents are not your specialty… You are, however, a whiz at graphic design. That’s right. You can’t build a table on a text document, but you can create amazing graphics using a photo editor. So you go ahead and you make a table exactly the way your boss wants, using the photo editor, and you save it as an image file. Then, you paste that image on the document. It looks great, but it’s not ideal.

It’s just a workaround – it’s not a permanent solution. It’s not ideal because it is an image. Your boss can’t edit that image, and she might want to. She’ll have to ask you to modify the image file if she wants a different table. If you had built the table using the functionality of the text editor, then it would be easy for your boss to edit it. But you didn’t have the time to learn all that today – your boss needs this table ready by 5PM. You used an image editor to build an image in twenty minutes, and it’s done.

So you used a workaround. Your boss will eventually ask you to learn how to build tables properly… She has already told you you’ll be making lots of tables in the months to come. But for now, an image will do. You can also call your solution  a quick fix. It’s a solution that saved you time. So you say “Boss, I haven’t learned all about tables yet but I found a quick fix.” You boss appreciates the quick fix, although she realises that you’ll have to do it properly next time.

Now tell me your stories of finding a workaround for real problems. Let me know and talk to you next time!


Key expressions

  • a workaround
  • a quick fix



you name it = “você escolhe”, mas no sentido de “e por aí vai”

an image will do = uma imagem serve



About the Author

Ana Luiza criou um blog de dicas de inglês em 2006, e depois de muito pesquisar o que faz alguém ganhar fluência numa segunda língua, criou seu primeiro curso de inglês em 2009.

  • Gabriel Salazar says:

    Thank you, Ana. I’ve listened to all the podcasts. =)

  • Lucas Batista says:

    Very useful tip, I’m sure I gonna use it, Thanks!

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