Como falo em inglês: No dia de São Nunca – Inglês Online

Como falo em inglês: No dia de São Nunca

By Ana Luiza | Podcast Inglês Online

Oct 30
Inglês Online No dia de São Nunca

How have you been?

Hoje, no podcast, eu falo sobre idioms com a palavra HELL. Não perca!


How have you been? 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 here we go: this week I’m going to talk about two idioms with the word hell. Yep, hell, the opposite, so to speak, of heaven. Let’s get right into it: if someone gives you hell for something you’ve done or said, that means… they’re not happy, to say the least. Giving you hell means telling you off, scolding you in a severe way. As per usual, however, sometimes people say “Oh, so and so will give me hell if I’m late” and they might be exaggerating a little bit. Maybe their friend will say something if they’re late but not necessarily give them hell – but we sometimes do that, right? We use certain expressions to exaggerate something and to create a certain effect.

So you might say “I didn’t do the dishes yesterday and my mother gave me hell for it”, meaning, she was upset. Or you could hear your work colleague say “My team screwed up the sales presentation to our biggest client and our director gave us hell for it” meaning, the director gave the team a severe scolding that will be hard to forget.

So here’s another one with hell: when hell freezes over. As everyone knows, hell is a place that is supposed to be really, really hot. So you can imagine what a person means when they say “when hell freezes over”. That means never, ever; not a chance. “Are you going to sell your bike and buy a car and start driving everywhere?” “Ha, when hell freezes over! I love riding my bike. Even when I’m on vacation! I’ll go everywhere on bike.”

So let me put together a little story for you: your boss, Joe, is the marketing manager and you’ve told him that your colleague Tina, over at Sales, said she needed a detailed report of all marketing expenses for the last five years – every single one of them. And, she needs it in two days. So when you’re done talking, Joe just looks at you and says “Yes. We’re going to prepare a complete report on every one of our expenses in the last five years for the day after tomorrow, when hell freezes over.” That’s it. You know that when your boss Joe says no, he means no. Tina is going to get that report when hell freezes over.

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Well, next thing you do is march over to Sales and give Tina the news. You’re going to start working on the report as soon as hell freezes over. You obviously use different words to convey the message, right? You say “Tina, unfortunately this isn’t something we can do at the moment. We don’t have enough staff to be able to handle this kind of task.” Tina’s boss, Larry, who’s just walking by, overhears you. He’s very angry to learn he’s not going to see this report anytime soon. In fact, he’s giving you hell for it right about now. He’s turned red and looks very agitated. Really upsetting what’s going on; Larry is clearly not happy. You go back to your boss’ office and tell him that Larry has given you hell for telling him about the report.

So that kind of thing happens sometimes, doesn’t it? What is your example? Let me know and talk to you next time!

Key expressions

  • give someone hell
  • when hell freezes over



overhears you = ouve (a sua conversa, sem estar participando dela)

Latest posts by Ana Luiza (see all)

  • Rômulo Melo says:

    Hi Ana !!!! Do you know when i am going to stop listening your podcasts ? Yep !!!! When hell freezes over .

  • Vera Graña Cruz says:

    Hi Ana!

    The expressions “when hell freezes over” and “give someone hell” are the same as “when pigs fly”

    See you around,

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