mettere le pere con le mele

Today’s Parola del Giorno is one of my favorite Italian expression: mettere le pere con le mele.

image of Cezanne's artwork "Apples and Oranges" in the Musée d'Orsay in Paris

Paul Cézanne: Still Life With Apples and Oranges (Paris, Musée d’Orsay, 1895-1900)

It means to compare apples to oranges. 

The expression literally means to put the pears with the apples.

Let’s see the expression used below:

La mia ragazza vuole passare le vacanze a Roma mentre io preferisco viaggiare all’estero. Dice che le due vacanze sono uguali e quello che importa è non passare il tempo in ufficio, eppure, secondo me, mette le pere con le mele! Un viaggio all’estero sarebbe molto più stimolate e rilassante!

My girlfriend wants to spend our vacation in Rome while I prefer to go abroad. She says the two vacations are the same and that what matters is not spending time in the office, but, she is, in my opinion, comparing apples to oranges! A trip abroad would be much more stimulating and relaxing!

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cadere come una pera cotta

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the expression cadere come una pera cotta, is difficult to translate. It literally means to fall like a cooked pear. It is used to describe someone who naively falls into a trap or pitfall that he/she should have avoided! Think of a mature, ripe pear in the hot Italian sun falling from a branch and hitting the ground…splat!

I would say that it means to get knocked out.

This expression can also be used to describe someone who just falls asleep suddenly or falls head over heels in love. Think of how mushy and soft pears are well cooked!

See the expression used below:

“Non so cosa mi sia successo. Stavo camminando per strada e all’improvviso ho perso i sensi. Sono caduta come una pera cotta!” – ha raccontato l’anziana signora al poliziotto che l’ha soccorsa.
I don’t know what happened to me. I was walking down the street, and I suddenly lost consciousness. I got knocked out!” the elderly woman told the policeman that helped her.

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essere come il prezzemolo

Ciao a tutti! My apologies for the late start to this week’s theme, but I had such a busy weekend of research and studying! This week’s theme is going to feature expressions that involve food! I picked seven of my favorite expressions — I hope they are new to you and will help to add flavor and character to your Italian!

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the expression essere come il prezzemolo, which means to turn up everywhere.

In Italian cooking, il prezzemolo or parsley turns up in a variety of dishes and recipes, hence the expression!

See the expression used below:

Ogni volta che accendo il televisore, vedo sempre la stessa presentatrice TV! Non importa il canale che io guardi; sembra che lei sia ovunque, è come il prezzemolo!

Every time I turn on the TV set, I always see the same TV presenter! It does not matter what channel I am watching; it seems as if she’s all over the place, she turns up everywhere!

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andare in macchina

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the expression andare in macchina, which means to drive or to go by car. 

Note that there is a difference between the verb guidare and andare in macchina. The verb guidare is transitive (transitivo) and is typically used to refer to the act of driving some form of transport or riding a form of transport. It stresses the activity, and it often followed by the mode of transportation being driven (macchina, moto, autobus, etc.).

The expression andare in macchina stresses movement to/from a particular place/location. 

Our example contrasts the two:

A mia madre non piace andare in macchina da nessuna parte se deve guidare lei. Dice che c’è sempre troppo traffico per strada e poi non le piace guidare di notte perché non vede bene al buio.

My mother does not like driving anywhere if she has to drive. She says there is always too much traffic on the roads and then does not like to drive at night because she doesn’t see well in the dark.

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mi va (+ nome) or mi va (di + infinito)

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the expression mi va (+ nome) or mi va (di + infinito), which means to feel like something or to feel like doing something.

This is a common expression in Italian that should be learned and practiced! If an infinitive is used, it must be preceded by the preposition di.

See the expression used below:

Marco ci ha telefonato, “Senti, Davide, cosa fate tu e Marina stasera? Questo caldo è insopportabile e vorrei qualcosa di freddo. Vi va di prendere un gelato dopo cena?”

Marco called us, “Listen, Davide, what are you and Marina doing tonight? This heat is unbearable, and I would like something cold. Do you feel like getting an ice cream after dinner?”

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andare + participio passato

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the verb expression andare + participio passato, which translates to must be. It is synonymous with the passive construction using dovere + essere + participio passato.

Don’t forgetthe past participle must agree in gender and number with subject of the sentence!

See the expression used below:

Durante la preparazione e dopo la cena di compleanno di mio nonno, mia zia continuava a ripetere che tutto il cibo che stava preparando andava mangiato: “Non voglio avanzi nel frigo!! Mangiate, mangiate!”

During the preparation of Grandfather’s birthday dinner and after, my aunt continued to say that all of the food she was preparing must be eaten: “I don’t want leftovers in the fridge! Eat, eat!”

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Customer Service and Email Response Times

Good morning!

I received a couple of emails over the weekend regarding from users of Parola del Giorno. I want to take the time to outline our customer service guidelines.

As many of you know, I am working on my doctorate at the moment, and, while I am not attending classes this summer, I am engaged in research while simultaneously providing administrative assistance to the university where I study. I am also busy working on Volume 2 of the Piccole Guide series and have several irons in the fire at any one time.

While there may be several of us working on Parola del Giorno at any one time, I (Keith) provide all of the customer service. While I may see your email on my smartphone, I do not always have access to information necessary to respond to your emails. Please be patient – I will respond as soon as I can!

I do not want users to the site to think that I am ignoring emails, questions, complaints, or concerns. 🙂

Here are some general customer service guidelines:

1-Our “office” is located in Albany, New York, USA in the Eastern Standard timezone. If you reside in Europe or another country/timezone, please be aware that I may be sleeping when you are awake (and vice versa).

2-Please give me 24-48 hours to respond to non-critical/non-purchase related emails. Chances are, I will respond sooner, especially if your email is in regards to an order or purchase you have made.

3-You can contact us a variety of ways: you may email us (info@paroladelgiorno.com), send us a message on our Facebook page, or send us a Tweet or Direct Message on Twitter. The storefront on Selz (where we sell all of our ebooks and publications) also has a mechanism for sending messages – these come directly to my phone. Please avoid sending important messages on Instagram or LinkedIn as these are not always connected to my phone.

Thanks again for everyone’s patience and understanding! I received some many positive emails in the last few weeks regarding the Piccola Guida on Prepositions. I hope that you will all enjoy volume 2, as well!

Sincerely,

Keith Preble
owner and author
Blog/Web site: www.paroladelgiorno.com
Twitter: @paroladelgiorno
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