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2021-01-24 besta-e-tu

My motto: « Besta é tu se você não viver nesse mundo. »

It comes from a song by the Brasilian group, « Os Novos Bahianos ».

It comes from a song

This translates as Stupid are you if you (do) not live in this world.”

Lyrics
besta é tu

The following translation is based on this translation, but I have modified it.

Portuguese English
Besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
You’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
Não viver nesse mundo, For not living in this world
se não há outro mundo. if there’s no other world.
(Por que não viver?) (Why don’t we live?)
Não viver nesse mundo. Why don’t we live in this world.
(Porque não viver?) (Why don’t we live?)
se não há outro mundo. if there’s no other world.
(Por que não viver?) (Why don’t we live?)
não viver outro mundo. not live in another world.
Besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
You’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
Não viver nesse mundo, For not living in this world
se não há outro mundo. When there aren’t any other worlds to live in
(Por que não viver?) (Why don’t we live?)
Não viver nesse mundo. Why don’t we live in this world.
(Porque não viver?) (Why don’t we live?)
Se não há outro mundo. Why don’t we live in this world.
(Por que não viver?) (Why don’t we live?)
Não viver outro mundo. Why don’t we live in this world.
E pra ter outro mundo, To have another world to live in
é preci-necessário viver. First, we need to live
Viver contanto em qualquer coisa. Live counting on something
Olha só, olha o sol. Hey you, look at the Sun
O Maraca domingo. The Maracanã stadium during a match
O perigo na rua. Violence on the streets
O brinquedo menino. The little boy’s toy
A morena do Rio,
pela morena eu passo o ano olhando o Rio.
The brunette woman from Rio,
I pass by looking at the brunette, I watch Rio during the whole year
Eu não posso com um simples requebro. I can’t cope with a single swing
Eu me passo, me quebro, entrego o ouro. I overpass myself, I’m broken inside, I give up on everything
Mas isso é só porque ela se derrete toda só porque eu sou baiano. But that’s just because she loves me just because I come from Bahia
Mas isso é só porque ela se derrete toda só porque eu sou baiano. But that’s just because she loves me just because I come from Bahia
Besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
besta é tu
You’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one
you’re the dumb one

My friends discuss the translation

ge: What’s the best English translation of besta e tu”?

Rob Anderson: Maybe Yer a dummy.

Julio Pinto: Maybe you’re the dumb one, not me”

ge: Here’s the reason I’m asking. I think that jerk” is wrong: https://lyricstranslate.com/en/besta-%C3%A9-tu-youre-jerk.html

ge: I’m asking Rob, the only serious person here.

Heidi Perry: I think it means you’re crazy, man” but how serious am I 😁🚴‍♀️🚴‍♀️

Julio Pinto: We’ll, this a well-known feature of Portuguese syntax. The inversion beats e tu” instead of tu e besta” is a topicalization meaning that there is an opposition between the addresser and the addressee. Sorry, George, Rob is serious, but the only native speaker who also studied linguistics is yours truly hehehe. Besta e tu DOES mean you’re the dumb one (not me is implicit).

ge: Julio, dear non-serious, linguist native speaker of Portuguese, as a former phonologist, I’ve never heard of topicalization, but I have looked it up on Wikipedia. I think I understand and agree with your translation (I’ve always translated besta’ as stupid’) but I have one question: what is the NON-topicalized version of that sentence? Thanks, ge

Julio Pinto: Dear G, my serious phonologist, the non-topicalized phrase only means you are a fool” or something to that effect. Maybe also stop being foolish”.

ge: I feel a difference between You’re dumb” and You’re the dumb one”. If I understand you correctly, the latter is closer to the meaning of besta e tu”. I like that. Thanks.

Julio Pinto: Precisely

David Perry: I agree with everything that has been proffered here except the idea that and I am not Is implicit. No way.

Julio Pinto: ????

David Perry: It is not required by the lyric.

ge: I disagree. I am not because I live in this world.

David Perry: Maybe you (the lyricist) aspire to that exalted state. But you can still proclaim it.

ge: I AM in that state, no proclaiming needed. Besta e tu!

Julio Pinto: You are the dumb one because you don’t live in this world. I am the smart one because I do.

David Perry: One is the dumb one if he/she/they doesn’t live in the world.

Julio Pinto: Exactly, D.

Pinto: This world

David Perry: But does not imply I do this, only that I know this.

ge: Exactly, D.

ge: Oops! I exactlied D too soon! D, you’re close, but no feijão!

ge: David has just moved us one turtle down.

Rob Anderson: Julio is quite right about the topicalization in Besta é tu,” which to my ear is either emphatic or contrastive here. So English might say, YOU’RE dumb” or It’s you that’s dumb.” Now, on to the pronoun choice tu, which is why we said ya’ or yer’–to be casual. Also dumb’ rather than stupid’–it’s besta’ not estúpido’, aside from any other differences in the words. I’m starting to like meathead’ as a rendering of besta’!

Rob Anderson: Also the song is NOT Babaca é tu” (You’re a jerk).

Julio Pinto: And Rob is right about the vernacular eh tu”, the wrong use of the 2nd person singular. Something like”you is a dickhead”

« Besta é tu se você não viver nesse mundo. »

So, after all that, how should I translate my motto? I’m leaning towards,

You're the one who's stupid, if you don't live in this world.

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