Chabacanizing Tagalog Expressions and Slang


A week ago, I was quite surprised when my friend greeted me, cosa man el noticia? I found this strange because I have never heard this greeting in Chabacano. I, however, realized that it is a direct translation of a very popular Tagalog greeting in Manila, anong balita?

Come to think of it there are a lot of Chabacano words which sounds as if they are direct translations from Tagalog. A couple of examples are:


TagalogChabacano
Patay-GutomMuerto-Hambre/Muertoy Hambre
Mukhang PeraCaray Sen
Feeling MagandaSenti Guapa

The 'y' in cara is added most probably because Chabacano sometimes follows Cebuano grammar and whenever a Tagalog word ends with a -ng, the Cebuano equivalent ends in a 'y'.

The Chabacano caray is a very useful bit of vocabulary because you can use it whenever you wish to say that something or someone looks like __________. Here are other examples of the word caray being used in Chabacano.

Tagalog: Mukhang Baboy
Chabacano: Caray Puerco
English: (Someone) looks like a pig.

Tagalog: Mukhang Mabigat
Chabacano: Caray Pesao
English: (Something) looks heavy

Tagalog: Mukhang Mayaman
Chabacano: Caray Rico
English: (Someone) looks rich

One Tagalog slang from Manila creeping into Chabacano is kumusta naman.

Here is a dialogue that explains this slang.

-Maputik ang daan.
-E di magsuot ka ng tsinelas.
-Kamusta naman ang mga paa ko noon?

-Malodo el camino.
-Na usa tu chinelas.
-Na quetal man mio pies si man chinelas yo?

-The road is muddy.
-Why don't you use slippers?
-But what would happen to my feet then?

If you're going to notice, these new implants in Chabacano are fairly new expressions and slang in the Tagalog language. It seems to me, Chabacano is experiencing quite an evolution yet again. But here’s where we separate Chabacano from the other languages. Instead of just opting to use the popular new Tagalog expressions and slang from Manila in its original form, we choose to adopt these words in our language (no matter how weird the translation sounds). Its capacity to adapt amidst the ever-changing linguistic composition of far more influential languages is what keeps our language from suffering the fate of other languages. This is truly what makes Chabacano de Zamboanga unique.

2 comments:

  1. Caray Pesao?

    ¿Jendêh ba gaja más propio habla "Hechura'y pesao"?

    El "caray pesao" gale, sabe yo que tiene ese "apóstrofo" antes el letra "y" como "Cara'y pesao, cara'y sen, cuento'y loco, etcétera"...

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    1. I'm not sure. Because Mukhang is not a contraction of 2 words, or is it? I mean mukhang in tagalog is never written as mukha'ng as far as I know.

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