Como digo em inglês: Fui pego desprevenido – Inglês Online

Como digo em inglês: Fui pego desprevenido

By Ana | Podcast Inglês Online

Jan 11
Como digo em inglês Fui pego desprevenido

Hello, you guys!

Nosso podcast volta em 2011 com três palavras/expressões super comuns na conversa dos nativos do inglês. Uma delas quer dizer mais ou menos “fui pego de surpresa/desprevenido”. As outras duas? Diga nos comentários como você traduziria.


Hey, everyone! How’s it going? Did you enjoy the holidays? Are you back yet from the holidays, or… are you listening to this podcast from a sunny beach? Whatever the case, here’s the new episode of Inglesonline Podcast. To see the transcript and every episode of this podcast, go to and click ‘Podcast Inglesonline’.

So, here’s a question: What is the object you always have handy? Handy: what does that mean? Let me ask you the question again. What do you always have handy? What’s the object that you always have or that you always keep handy?  Something useful, that you often need or that you often use, and that you try to keep easily within reach at all times. Within reach – that means you can easily grab it when you need it. For example, in your car, in your purse, on your desk, and so on.

Maybe you’re like my father and you always have an umbrella handy. My father always has an umbrella handy. Actually, I think he always has a couple of umbrellas within reach: one in his car and another one in his suitcase. My father will never be caught off guard by the rain, nope. He always has an umbrella handy, wherever he goes. And here’s another thing that he always keeps handy: a bottle of water. Every time I get into my father’s car I see his bottle of water. So, my dad likes to have two things handy at all times: an umbrella and a bottle of water. What about you? What do you keep handy?

OK, so I just used this expression about thirty seconds ago: caught off guard. This is another common expression. Let me give you an example: let’s say you are at your desk, working like you always are… not playing Solitaire on the computer or anything, just working, and all of a sudden your boss walks in and says:

“Hey, Jack. I know you’re supposed to be leaving to the Fiji Islands tomorrow for you well-deserved vacation. I mean, how long has it been since your last vacation? Three years, right? You so deserve a vacation! I mean, if anyone deserves it, it’s you. And I want you to know… I know that! But here’s the thing: that account we’ve been chasing for over a year… the big software company? I got the VP of Purchasing to be here tomorrow. He’s finally going to meet with us! Well, with you, actually. See, I have to take my grandma to the doctor. I just have to go with her. Jack, we need you! We need you to run this meeting. What do you say? We need you, Jack. What do you say?”

And you say “Sure, boss. I’m sure I can get a refund on my plane ticket. Hey, who needs vacations anyway?”

And when you tell your friends what happened, they say “Are you insane? Why did you say yes?” And you say “Well, my boss caught me off guard! I didn’t know what else to say!”. So your boss caught you off guard. He caught you off guard. That means that you were not expecting it, you were kinda surprised by what he said, and in this particular example you didn’t have the time to think things through before making a decision. Right? You didn’t have the time, you didn’t have enough time. Why? Because your boss caught you off guard. So in the end you agreed to something you really didn’t want to agree with. You said Yes but you really didn’t mean it, right? Why? Because you were caught off guard.

Here’s another example: let’s say you’re a guy and you want to propose to your girlfriend. It’s gonna be a surprise, you haven’t said anything to her but you’re sure she’s gonna say yes to your marriage proposal. So you take her out to dinner and you propose. You say “Will you marry me?” and she says “Whoa! I’m so surprised. You caught me off guard, I didn’t know our relationship was so serious! You totally caught me off guard! I’ll need some time to think about it”. So you caught your girlfriend off guard. That means she wasn’t even thinking about this. You know, this is something she needs to think about, she has some things to consider before making a decision like that, and you caught her off guard. She hasn’t thought about this, she wasn’t expecting the proposal, so now she needs some time to think it through. You know, she can’t make a decision without giving it some thought. It’s a big decision so she needs to give it some thought. So she couldn’t make the decision. Why? Because you caught her off guard.

OK, one more: remember Jack, the guy that was supposed to go to the Fiji Islands but isn’t anymore, because his boss told him to run a meeting on the day he was supposed to leave? Some people would say that Jack is a pushover. A pushover. What is a pushover? A pushover is someone that other people usually take advantage of. You know why? Because a pushover is someone who doesn’t say NO very often. So Jack has his trip planned, he hasn’t had vacations in three years, he deserves to go on vacation, right? But… when his boss asked him to stay and be in a meeting, he said yes. Right, his boss caught him off guard, but, you know… Jack said yes. Do you think Jack is a pushover? Leave a comment with your opinion. Also, please tell us about the last time someone or something caught you off guard. Talk to you next time!

Key expressions

  • handy (nota: handy tem outros significados além do apresentado aqui)
  • something or someone caught me off guard
  • a pushover


Are you back yet? = Você já está de volta?

whatever the case = de qualquer maneira

within reach = ao (seu) alcance (ou de outra pessoa, dependendo do uso)

wherever he goes = onde quer que ele vá

your well-deserved vacation = suas tão merecidas férias

if anyone deserves it, it’s you = se tem alguém que merece é você

I got the VP of Purchasing to be here tomorrow = eu consegui que o VP de Compras esteja aqui amanhã

think things through = pensar bem, com cuidado sobre alguma coisa

to propose to your girlfriend = pedir sua namorada em casamento

Pessoal – aguardo os comentários de vocês com seus exemplos! Qual foi a última vez que você foi caught off guard? O que você deixa handy? Você já deu uma de pushover?

  • Luciano says:

    So Ana, when someone caught me off guard it can be good or not, but about the pushover I can’t accept cause we Always should give a good answer when somenthings happened to prejudice us.
    see ya.

  • Luciano says:

    Without comments, simply wonderful

  • Anne says:

    Great job as always.

  • so: this comment were very good I learned a lot of with this.
    thank so much. this way we are learning of sure.

  • Glau Ribeiro says:

    I’m reading the “twilight’and at the page 232 I found this: “Please, forgive me, he said formally. I can control myself. You caught me off guard.” and I remember that you learn me what means “caught me off guard”.


  • Carla PS says:

    Hi, Ana! This is not my first time here – since I`ve been enjoying your site for a while -, although only now I decided to write some. My english is not that good, not as I wanted to, and because of that I know I have many difficulties on choosing the right words to express myself and even on writing them correctly. I learnt english by myself, pushing myself to listening films and all kind of musics that I liked, as reading medicine articles (that`s my segment of work). I know I need to improve a lot, and you have been helping me in a way a can`t even describe! (from both sides: I don’t know how to say or to write
    Pronto. Acabou o meu estoque! Estou super feliz em escrever para vc e gostaria, quando possível, que me dissesse os erros que cometi em meu texto.
    Vou continuar super ligada em vc e em suas dicas!
    Muito obrigada e muito sucesso !!!

  • Renata de França says:

    Hi Ana,
    Great job!You´re a special teacher.=)
    I´ve learned a lot with your pods.
    So, I always have handy my cell phone to listening your pods and my dictionary to helping me.
    I don´t remember of a situation that I´ve been caught off guard, sorry.
    Well, my grandmother is a pushover, she always is doing things for my cousins and uncles,all the time,and them (se aproveitam da situação) rs.

    Bye Ana.

  • Glauciene says:

    Hello, Ana!

    I just want to say that I really like your podcast! My work is more interesting now! =)

    So, something handy: I always have in my purse my necessaire with make-up and I am like your father, I also always keep handy a bottle of water.

    Congratulations and thanks!


    nao posso dizer q gostei pq nao entendi nada esta td ingles,como se diz , em ingles, persuadir? obrigado ana.

  • Ueritom says:


    Sou o dono do blog Inglês para Leigos. Você o incluiu na listagem que está no link abaixo:

    Gostaria de souber se existe a possibilidade de atualizar o link para

    Estou comentando aqui pois os comentários foram fechados lá.



  • Nah says:

    An another awesome posdcast Ana. Thanks for everything, thanks for the learning.

  • Wagner Duarte says:


  • Greate again Ana Luiza !!!!

  • ali x says:

    sem dor nao ha resultados.
    kill or be kill men….

  • Marco Brainiac says:

    Hi Ana,

    Something handy to me is my cell phone and watch.

    I agree if you by Jack be a pushover. Often when the people realize that you are a pushover they got you like a fool and you must give a brake being more rude.

    Thank you for your indication of book (Blue book’s Raymond)by the way I don’t want to be caught off guard in one job’s contest or interview in English.

    Have a nice 2011

  • Gustavo Fae says:

    Hi Ana,
    Thank you:)
    I got it.

  • ricardo tocha says:

    hello ana,
    I wanna to thank you about your job, its help me too much, people like you keep the lighted candle of learning.
    well, two months ago i was going to my employment,when i cross the street one car caught me off guard and I broken an arm =(.
    I always handy my wallet in my pocket.
    Jack made one sacrifice and I hope him be rewarded, well in my opinion jack should feel important because is not anyone to run one important meet.[mas se fosse eu falaria nao](obs;n sei isso em ing huhahua)
    bem profe é isso n sei se esta certo, xD

  • Ana Luiza says:

    Hi Valéria – great story! You were caught off guard because you didn’t know about the interview with the director, and you felt unprepared, right?

    Marcio – your friend asked to borrow some money and you were caught off guard… nice example.

    OK, até agora a maioria acha que Jack is not a pushover. Interesting smile

  • Ana Luiza says:

    Oi pessoal

    Adorei ler os comentários e exemplos de todos.

    @ Gustavo Fae: nesse caso não é bem caught off guard, pois vc sabe q restaurante cobra smile Aí é mais o caso de você ter esquecido de por dinheiro na carteira. Vc poderia usar caught off guard se fosse num lugar achando q é gratuito, e chegando lá visse que estão cobrando entrada, e fosse mais do que você tem na carteira, etc.
    Vc poderia dizer “I was caught off guard” pois não sabia que custava $$ e se soubesse do preço, teria trazido mais dinheiro, por exemplo.

  • Marcio says:

    I already was caught off guard by my friend that ask me some money… And without give it thoughts I borrowed money to him. So far, I haven´t taken back my money.


  • Emanuel says:

    Very useful your podcast. Congratulation

  • Alysson says:

    Hi for everybody,
    I think isn’t that case of you to be a pushover or not, the point is that there is so many people interested in take your place in one company that you can’t expect leave your job without to be sure that you done everything that was suggested.
    We live in times that the market turns very fast, this mean that you leave your job for one month can mean that when you come back can have other person in your place within of company. Besides this, this person can do your work better than you do with just half of your salary.
    byyy, nice history

  • Hi Ana, I’m loving your pod. You asked about Jack and I think it’s depend how much is important to Jack this meeting, but the most important in this situation isn’t cancel his vacation.
    About caught off guard, this happend when I was looking for a new job. I had an interview and when I arrived in that room, there was a TV and I figured out I would have a conference call with the HR Director at Company at Belgium. This caught me off guard because I wasn’t prepared and I don’t need to say that was a desaster.
    About keep handy, I always have my phone handy, because I have my calendar appointments in my phone.

  • Gustavo Fae says:

    Hi, Ana.
    The podcasts has been great all the time. Actually, I’m living in China and I caught off guard when I entered in the restaurant to order some dish and when I pull out my wallet to take the money I realized I had no money.
    I always have my key’s home handy. Well, If it not, how can I get in home without people in there. smile
    I was a pushover with my girlfriend but now, sometimes I’m still a pushover with her. smile
    Happy new year to everyone.
    All the Best

  • andre Eluar says:

    olá bom dia eu achei essa iniciativa fantastica de aprender ingles gratuitamente
    espero que fique com essa ideia por muito e muitos tempo que esse site esta beneficiando milhares de pessoas que nao tem condiçoes de estudar sobre uma lingua estrangeira como e o ingles

  • Hugo says:

    Hi, Ana!

    I’m a handy man so I do not need to be advised to keep things handy all the time. smile

    A pushover no meu entender, também poderia ser traduzido como zé mané ou abestado, em alguns contextos, estou certo?

    Thanks for your kind attention. Keep up the great work!

    See ya!

  • Carlos Augusto says:

    Hi Ana,good to hear you again.

    —->Juliana caught me off guard when she asked me to teach you about History of Brazil.
    —->Cell Phone,pen and money handy are very useful.
    —->A pushover won’t rock the boat,unless you make them angry…haha!

    Can I use ‘handy’ about having friends around?

      All the best.

  • Gil says:

    This podcast it’s interesting for everybody, I really liked this podcast; by the way I always have my pen-drive handy, and I don’t remember when I was caught off guard but pushover i was “The Official Pushover” at my neighboor but one day said i’m done with this situation and I never was the pushover again.

  • Ana Luiza says:

    Hi Fatima: when I say “have an umbrella handy”, handy is an adjective. Usually we see the adjective before the noun, but in the case of this particular construction, it comes after the noun.

    Hi Juliana: I know! It’s always good to have a little cash handy.

  • Juliana says:

    It’s a very good podcast!! Yesterday, I was caught off guard by the piece of wood!! Let me explain.. I opened the door of bulding where I live, when surrendly, a piece of wood fell on the floor near me! I was not waiting for it…

    About handy… I always have a money handy. Sometimes I need to pay something where don’t accept bank cards.. I don’t know..

  • Fatima says:

    Hello Ana Luiza! I’ve been following your website and listening your podcats, which I really enjoy! They always come with some interesting tip about idiomatic expressions. In your last tip, I’m kinda confused… I know the word “handy” as an adjective yet, you just used it as a noun in “umbrella handy” so, can we used it as a noun as well? Could you explain it to me? Thank you much!!!

  • Robson Almeida says:

    Adorei esse texto. Na verdade, todos são maravilhosos. Tenho certeza que várias pessoas estão aproveitando muito esse site. A velocidade que você falou ficou perfeita! Até eu, que sou iniciante consegui entender! hehe.

    Felicidades, sucesso e paz!

  • glayds says:

    Esse conteúdo é interessantíssimo!!!!! É importante destacar que na oralidade algumas expressões podem ter duplo sentido,no caso acima essas expressões nos ajudam muito num momento oportuno, por isso considero esse conteúdo excelente!!!Parabéns!!

  • joão says:

    I was caught off guard by my boss, like Jack.

  • Ana Luiza says:

    Thanks Ira… It comes and goes, you know!

    When I moved to this neighborhood I was caught off guard by a few homeless people (not really homeless…) begging for money on the street. I gave them money a few times but later I stopped, because I realized they had been in the streets for quite a while and that was actually their occupation!

  • Iramaia says:

    So something handy…I wouldn’t say umbrella, definitely. I could say a pen instead, but no, not that either. Oh my, I can’t think of change??? Yeah, maybe.
    The last time I was caught off guard..hummm…my memory isn’t helping me today. If I remember I’ll tell you, ok?
    I would have to meet Jack to make sure that he’s a pushover..haha. From that only episode, no, I wouldn’t say he is.It’s about his boss and more important his job, you know.

    Thank you, Ana. It seems that you have found the inspiration. smile

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