fare le pulci

This week’s theme will profile expressions that make use of the verb fare! We hope you enjoy the expressions that we have chosen.

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the expression fare le pulci, which means to nitpick. The word le pulci means fleas. As you know, when fleas bite, they cause one to itch, and this feeling can be annoying and nagging. According to the dictionarynitpicking is criticism that is often unjustified and minute (like fleas!).

See the expression used below:

Che palle! Prima di andare al mare ho deciso di passare dai miei e subito mia madre ha cominciato a farmi le pulci: “Perché non mi chiami mai? Perché mi telefoni prima di venire a trovarci? Perché non sei sposato?”

What a drag! Before going to the beach, I decided to stop by parent’s place, and my mother immediately started nitpicking me: “Why don’t you ever call me? Why don’t you phone before coming to visit us? Why aren’t you married?”

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sfruttabile

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the adjective sfruttabile, which means exploitable or workable.

See the adjective used below:

Dopo anni di siccità nessuno credeva che questa terra fosse ancora sfruttabile ma, con pazienza e un po’ di determinazione, mio zio è riuscito a coltivare un bel raccolto di grano!

After years of drought, no one could believe this land was still workable, but, with patience and a bit of determination, my uncle was able to cultivate a good grain harvest!

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Have a great weekend, everyone! Buon week end a tutti! 

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sfasciare

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the verb sfasciare, which means to smash or to wreck something.

The past participle is sfasciatoavere is used in compound tenses.

See the verb used below:

Secondo la ricostruzione della polizia, i ladri hanno provato ad aprire la cassaforte del negozio ma non ci sono riusciti. Si saranno innervositi e per questo motivo hanno iniziato a sfasciare tutti i mobili del negozio fino all’arrivo della polizia.

According to the police reconstruction, the thieves tried to open the store safe, but they weren’t able to do it. They got upset, and, because of this, they started to smash all the store’s furniture until the police arrived.

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la sfilza

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the noun la sfilza, which means a string of something.

In the past, the word described a long line of something, say books on a shelf or a collection of something arranged together. Today, it is more often used in a figurative sense to refer to a long line of other things, such as errors, swear words during an argument, or insults, etc.

See the noun used below:

Un politico molto importante ha perso le elezioni perché ha commesso una sfilza di errori gravi quando ha parlato male dei poveri e delle donne.

A very important politician lost the election because he made a string of serious errors when he spoke badly about poor people and women.

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CORRECTION:

Yesterday, I mistranslated the example for sfasato; I have corrected the error. Thank you for those of you who wrote to me and pointed it out!

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Surprising words: il Dio, il dio

Welcome to the newest category on Parola del Giorno called Surprising Words. These posts will highlight words that do not play by the rules in some way, shape, or form — they have unusual plurals, no plural at all, change gender, and so forth.

The inaugural post is the noun il dio (or Dio), which means god (or God).

When used in its capitalized form (Dio), it refers to the supreme God of whatever religion one to which one is referring.

When one talks about polytheistic religions, such as the ancient Greeks or Romans (which feature prominently in Greek and Italian culture), we do not tend to capitalize it.

When we are talking about gods of a pantheon, note that the plural of il dio is gli dei.

If one is referring just to the female gods of a pantheon, use the noun la dea (pluralle dee).

If you want to learn more about Roman mythology, check out this site.

Wikipedia Italia also has a good listing of the names of Roman mythological gods, goddesses, and heroes.

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sfilacciarsi

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the pronominal verb sfilacciarsi, which means to fray or to unravel.

See the verb used below:

Mia madre pensava di aver fatto un bell’affare comprando quelle due camicie in sconto ma, dopo due o tre lavaggi, la cucitura delle maniche si è sfilacciata e le camicie non si possono più indossare!

My mother thought she made a good deal buying those two shirts on sale but, after two or three washes, the stitching of the sleeves unraveled, and the shirts cannot be worn anymore!

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Paperback of Ripassiamo! is now available!

Ciao a tutti!

When I first envisioned Piccole Guide, I did not intend for them to be in paperback version. Many of you had sent emails asking that I please make them available for purchase since many of you prefer paperbacks to ebooks! Both volumes 1 and 2 and the exercise guide for volume 1 are available from Lulu.

Our latest guidaRipassiamo!, is now available in paperback and can be purchased here from Lulu!

I want to explain briefly the pricing structure and answer some questions I have received about why some ebooks/books are priced higher in some places than others.

First, each guide costs about $7 to print and bind 40 pages. It is important that these guides be succinct. It is also the reason that exercises are not included. The exercises for volume 1 are free to download from our Store Front on Selz (anyone who donated or pre-ordered would have received a free copy automatically – if you did not, reach out to me!).

Second, for each copy made, the publisher takes a cut, and then I have to pay them to print the book. All books are print on demand. After factoring in costs and profits, each copy retails between $17.99-19.99. If the price were any lower, we would just break even and defeat the purpose of writing them. This is why if you purchase the Piccole Guide from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and elsewhere, they are priced higher than if you purchased them directly from the publisher. They also change the price depending on supply and demand, and I have no control over that. Also, when selling to a third-party, they also take a cut, which is why the price is higher so there is something left over for PdG! I’m not trying to gouge anyone, I promise! 🙂

Third, you can get paperback copies of our all our publications from Lulu.com. The prices are lower, and I can control the price, which is why most of our publications are 25-50% off the retail cover price. The lower price means I do not have to pay commission to a third-party.

Lastly, eBooks sold as PDF on Selz are great because it means that a) we can keep more of the profit b) we can make changes and update publications whenever we want c) it costs the consumer much less. Unfortunately, the same pricing issue occurs when we sell eBooks on the iBook Store, Google Play, and Amazon since we have to pay commission to sell our books there. What you are paying for at these sites is having all your books in one place and making use of their IT infrastructure. (Remember that PDFs can be loaded onto Kindle devices, iPads, smartphones, and PC’s — we cannot provide extensive IT help, but if you are having trouble, reach out; maybe we can help or at least point you in the right direction).

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