¡Yo tengo el poder!

by Marina Ilari
(Madison, Wisconsin, USA)

I recently saw a sign detailing instructions in case the power went off and it said "Si se corta el poder...".

At first I didn't understand what that meant, and felt like I was in a science fiction movie. As you probably know, in Spanish we use "se cortó la luz" or "se cortó la electricidad" to convey that; the word "poder" has only the abstract meaning of "control, dominance". It reminded me of the animated series "HE-MAN", where the main character used to say "I have the power" (¡Yo tengo el poder!).

I just thought it was a funny and ridiculous way of translating "power" into Spanish. I guess it can be a tricky word to translate for an English-speaking person, but if you translate it literally it has a totally different meaning in Spanish and it can lead to serious misunderstandings!

Comments for ¡Yo tengo el poder!

Average Rating starstarstarstarstar

Click here to add your own comments

Jun 09, 2010
The power cut itself
by: Bilardo

Funny! I can see why that could get by someone, and how ridiculous that sounds translated back into English. Good example.

Jun 09, 2010
Very funny!
by: Danisa


Jun 09, 2010
So funny!!!!
by: ML

A very funny story, I really liked!
By the power off.. Translations jajajaj

Jun 09, 2010
Very good
by: Beatriz Cirera

I liked the example and picture

Jun 09, 2010
by: Anonymous

Good picture.

Jun 09, 2010
Great example
by: Anonymous

Very well illustrated!

May 18, 2010
Attention, superheros!
by: Anonymous

Very funny example and comments! I really like the illustration.

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Foreign Language Translation Bloopers.