The other day, my son… Well, let’s just say he did something mischievous, something that he definitely shouldn’t have done.
I wasn’t around when it happened and was filled in by my wife, who told me that she ‘le tenia que cantar las cuarenta’.
I’d never heard that expression before and upon first hearing it, I thought it had to do with singing a song from the 1940s. Undoubtedly, I was left rather bewildered. Why was she disciplining him by singing a song? That was until she explained what it meant.
We don’t have a similar song-related expression in English, but something similar would be to ‘scold’, to ‘tell someone off’, or to ‘give someone a good talking-to’.
For example, I could say:
I hope that helps!
Daniel - Tu coach inglés
Soy el director de Daniel Smith + Partners. Tengo más de 15 años de experiencia enseñando inglés a españoles.