Como falo em inglês: Fala de uma vez o que aconteceu

By Ana | Podcast Inglês Online

Mar 14
Como falo em inglês Fala de uma vez o que aconteceu

What’s up? Nesse episódio do podcast Inglês Online eu falo sobre algumas maneiras de dar uma má notícia.


Hi, everyone. Today we have a new episode of the inglesonline podcast. Please subscribe to this podcast using the Podcasts app for iPhone or iPad, or listen to the episodes using the Inglesonline Android app.

Last week our podcast centered around the word thorough and today we have an equally nice word! Today’s word is straight – s-t-r-a-i-g-h-t, straight. So listen to this: Just give it to me straight. Come on, give it to me straight. I know you got bad news for me and bad news is never easy to deliver. I wanna hear the news anyway; I wanna know what happened. Just give it to me straight.

Did you get the meaning of “Just give it to me straight”? You know when you gotta give someone the bad news… it’s never pleasant. Have you ever had to fire someone? Have you ever had to assess someone’s performance and then tell them that they had been underperforming? Or maybe you had to tell someone that they’re sick, or that they didn’t pass the Vestibular, or that they’ve lost money or something…

This is all bad news, right? Many people tend to beat around the bush when trying do deliver unpleasant news. And if you are the recipient of bad news, you might appreciate that… Although we usually can tell when someone has something unpleasant to say, can’t we? We can tell by their body language and also by the verbal clues: someone who’s trying to deliver bad news will often hesitate, stutter, fidget a little…

Anyway, many people would rather learn the news as soon as possible, without any sugarcoating. They can tell the other person is trying to be gentle or just hesitating. And sometimes these people will say “Just give it to me straight. What happened?”. Or they’ll say “I know it’s bad. Just give it to me straight. I can take it. How bad is it?”

I think I’m one of those people. If I notice someone trying to tell me unpleasant news, I’ll say “C’mon, just give it to me straight”. How about you? Here’s what someone wrote on a tweet: “Don’t sugarcoat anything with me. I respect honesty because I’m definitely going to give it to anybody straight . ” Do you get what “sugarcoat” means? Imagine covering the truth with a layer of sugar, in order to try to make it more palatable. That’s what sugarcoating something means. So this girl is saying that she’d rather just hear the truth. She’s asking everyone to not sugarcoat anything when talking to her. She wants people to give it to her straight. Just tell her everything at once, don’t sugarcoat it.

So what would you prefer? What’s your style? When receiving bad news, would you rather the other person gave it to you straight? Or do you think a little sugarcoating could help soften the blow? What would you do if you had to deliver unpleasant news to someone? Would you give it to them straight, or would you sugarcoat it a little?

Talk to you next time!


Key Expressions

  • Give it to me straight
  • Don’t sugarcoat the truth


we can tell = dá pra (gente) saber

verbal clues = as pistas que a pessoa dá verbalmente (através do que ela fala)

stutter = gaguejar

fidget = se mexer de maneira desconfortável (na cadeira, por exemplo, quando a pessoa não está se sentindo à vontade)

I can take it = eu aguento

palatable = com gosto bom

soften the blow = amaciar a queda (em sentido figurado)

Al 19/03/2013

Hello, Ana.
“Or maybe you had to tell someone that they’re sick, or that they didn’t pass the Vestibular, or that they’ve lost money or something…” Vendo esta frase concluí: Quando nos referimos a pessoas indefinidas tais como someone, usamos they e them no lugar de it, he, she, his, her… É isso mesmo?

Cicero Rodrigues 19/03/2013

Hi Ana,

First of all, I’d like to thank you for this amazing podcast.

Delivery a bad news in a direct way can be very strong to the person that are receiving the news. Imagine if this person has heart diseases. On the other hand, beating around the bush during a long time can cause the person to get nervous and stressed.

I think that a mix of sugarcoating and direct way is the ideal.

Have a nice day.

Best wishes.

Marcos 18/03/2013

A while ago I had to tell to my wife about her nephew’s death, and i will confess I went straight. It is what I think was a better way to give her about something so bad.

Débora 18/03/2013

I would prefer that the person gave it to me straight actually it depends on the subject, but if I had to deliver unpleasant news to someone I would sugarcoat it a little. :)

Luis Henrique 17/03/2013

Depends on which language the person is speaking. If they are saying the bad news in portuguese i’d rather that the person be in a direct way without hesitate, because i already know well portugues. but if is in english, beat around the bush would be better for me, so i would have the chance to hear more english being spoken and learn more. kkkkkk
Thank you for this awesome podcast!!!!

Thiago 17/03/2013

Excelente podcast, Ana Luiza. Moro em rio branco no estado do Acre, e aprecio demais suas dicas. Prefiro que as pessoas give it to me the straight, but when I’m the teller I usually do the sugarcoating.

jonata 16/03/2013

Podcast mt bom como sempre valeu Ana Luiza estou aprendendo mt!e a proposito eu acho q prefiro receber más noticias sem enrolacao…beating around the bush!

Nina 15/03/2013

Interestingly…, I prefer to receive bad news straight, but certainly to give a bad news just before I sugarcoat it a little…

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