Cebuano Idioms

My compilation of the most common Cebuano idiomatic expressions:


Hubaga ni Inday – (slang) a sexy woman

Kabayoon og Nawong – it has the same meaning with what Vice-Ganda is kept on saying on television– an elongated face

Guwapa kon magtalikod – means not beautiful; especially used to describe a woman who is too pretty to look at from behind

Kandingon – refers to person who doesn’t like taking a bath; coined after a goat (kanding)

Ang gaba dili magsaba! – curse, karma comes anytime

Ang kalimot way gahom – everyone may forget

Babayeng’ mugbo’g lupad – refers to prostituted women

Bisan ang ulan may paglurang – everything has an end.

Kapugngan pa ang BAHA, dili ang BIGA!!! – unstoppable.

Kusog pas’ kilat –  referring to a person who is quick to act on something
Ex. Dalia ra nakahuman og kaon ni Juan. Kusog pa man sa kilat.

Laa og baba – referring to a person who is perceived as having the tendency of saying
things that will actually happen after a short while.
Ex. Kalaa sab nimo og baba. Imo man natag-anan.

Mura’g uhong nga nanubo – sprouting like mushrooms

Naa pa sa itlog sa papa – yet to be conceived. “Itlog” is referring to the egg of the male
Ex. Kadugay na ato nahitabo. Naa pa man ko sa itlog sa akong papa ato.

Ngitngit pa sa alkitran – too black; not clear
Ex. Ngitngit pas alkitran nga mahitabo na.

Panahon pa ni Mampor – referring to the time of the ancestors
Ex. Karaan na man na. Panahon pa na ni Mampor.

Paspas pa sa manatad – to run fast especially to escape arrest from authorities.
Ex. Paspas pa sa manatad nga nanibat ang mga sugarol atol sa ronda sa tigbakayan.

Pila’y pa’ad sa pungkol – everyone has his luck

Unaha una og silhig ang imong tugkaran, una ka manlimpyo sa uban! – get rid first of the bad things around you before telling others to clean their mess also.


Quick Quake Look and the Tsunami

There’s been a series of non-stop discussion on the recent quake that hit the Visayas these past few days amid the relief and disaster operation conducted at the heavily-stricken areas. I’ve heard facts and non-facts-at-all from radio broadcasters who talked like experts on earthquakes and tsunamis.

I’ve been keeping this manual on “Earthquake and Tsunami” published in 1990 by the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PhiVolcS) that serves as a guide for my news reportage.

Many of the facts in the manual are nowhere can be found in the internet because of the inability of the PhiVolcS to upload it to the cyberspace for some reasons.

One fact that stands out in the manual is the Tsunami map where all of the 27 local tsunamis from 1603 – 1975 are plotted. The map proves the claims of non-experts that tsunamis occur only in open seas are indeed WRONG. The map shows several places in the Philippines with inland seas that were hit by tsunamis. One of which is the coastline of now the Metro Cebu area as indicated in the map. The exact date of this tsunami that hit Cebu once-upon-a-time is not indicated in the map.

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REVIEW: E-Reading Sunstar Daily(Cebu) Digital Edition

Got an email early today informing me of the day’s Sunstar Daily(Cebu) Digital edition. This is the first email i’ve received from Sunstar since i registered for free access of the paper’s digital editions several days ago. So, i navigate the digital edition of the paper and decided to blog it as a review.

An email from Sunstar Digital Editions informing that today's issue is already available

I chose the Sun.Star Daily digital edition for my review. There are five ways to navigate the pages of the paper: 1- Going directly to the table of contents; 2- Clicking the thumbnail at the right side bar; 3- Clicking the navigation arrow below; 4- Hover the mouse and click the the upper right & upper left tip of the page; 5- Click the page number at the upper left and upper right of each page.

Hovering and clicking the mouse at the upper right and upper tip of the page will turn the page like the usual e-reader.

You can also view all of the thumbnails to go directly to a page.

Hover the mouse over the title or headline of each news story and a shout-out of the lead paragraph will pop out in the screen.

Click the BLOG button below and you can export any page to your blog.You'll be asked to login to your blog to export the page and in few seconds it will appear as a new post on your blog.

In an instant the blogged page will appear on your blog.

Hovering the SAVE button, you can either download or export the digital issue to an eReader like Kindle and Nook but no iPad yet in the selection. However, Sun.Star says it's also available on iPad, Android and other mobile devices.

You can also view the recent issues using the Calendar but limited to one-week old issues only.

Hovering the headline or title of the story opens Share, Print, Listen buttons. Clicking the Share button opens a pull-down menu with choices of various networking sites and other popular sites where you can export the story.

Clicking the Listen button opens a media player that reads the content of the story. Listen to the screen reader below:

Clicking the Interactive Radio button on the left side bar opens a media player but nothing plays on it. I think this is an upcoming feature of the digital paper that would be linked to an internet radio streaming.

You can read Sun.Star digital edition while offline but you need to install PressReader software.

You can adjust the page to One-page view, Two-page view, and adjust the width.

Zoom in to the finest details

...and zoom in to the pictures in a high definition quality.

Of course, the digital editions are for a fee. Mine is a trial access. Subscription is worth as much as the printed copy at about P9 per day. The only thing not-so-good with the digital edition is that sharing with other people in your office or home is not always possible. And of course, no more newsprint to use as “putos sa buwad”. 🙂

KNN Adds More Beneficiaries

Another batch of beneficiaries were chosen to receive the seed capital of P5,000 each after being selected by the KNN Committee.

However, only eight of the supposedly 20 beneficiaries were selected after their business proposals passed the scrutiny of the committee. KNN Project Chair Carmen Piramide explains that some of the business plans failed to meet the requirements.

The eight successful proponents are the following:

1- Lucia Cordova (Tata and Luz Eatery/Sari-sari Store)

2- Eugene Corro (Sweet Trio Yema)

3- Susan & Newton Duhig (Duhig Bag Maker)

4- Gloria Olofernes (Gloria’s Native Eggs)

5- Rogaciana Lovendina (ANRO Refrigeration & Airconditioning Shop)

6- Alvaro Sarael/AGAPE Community (Catorbi Chips)

7- Reynaldo Pagaduan (Francis Benedict Enterprises)

8- Rudy Malaay (Putochesca)

The beneficiaries were part of the 80 persons who attended the Business Plan Making Seminar during the Grand Halad sa Kapamilya last month in Mabolo Elementary School. The attendees were asked to submit their business plans to get a chance to receive the seed capital.

The Kapamilya Negosyo Na is a joint project of the USC-College of Commerce Alumni Association, USC-College of Commerce, ABS-CBN/DYAB1512, and the Department of Labor and Employment.

My First Cebuano Translation Job

I’ve been writing scripts in Cebuano for more than two decades. The first time i wrote in Cebuano was when i made it to the pool of radio reporters of DYKC in 1987.

I have had about 7 years experience in editing news scripts in Cebuano while working at ABS-CBN news departments in Cebu, Iligan, and Davao.

I have been teaching Cebuano Journalism at the University of San Jose Recoletos’ mass communication department since 2007.

But only this week that i got a professional job of translating English articles to Cebuano. It’s for a fee and my clients are nursing students from another school.

In short, i am translating items related to nursing and medicine. Here are some of it:

  • When your baby is upset, fussy, or crying, how good are you at soothing him or her? (translation: Kon sa higayon nga ang imong bata tandogon, gisapot o naghilak, unsa ka kamaayo mopahupay o mo-am-am niini?)
  • How good are you at keeping your baby occupied when you need to do housework? For example, how good are you at finding things for the baby when you need to do the dishes. (translation: Unsa ka kamaayo moseguro nga malingaw lang ang imong anak samtang ikaw dunay gitrabaho sa balay? Pananglitan, unsa ka kamaayo mangita og butang o angay himoon sa imong bata aron ka makalihok sulod sa balay?)

Choices for the answer of the questions include:

  • not good at all (dili gyod maayo)
  • not good enough (dili tanto maayo)
  • good enough (Paigo lang)
  • very good (Maayo kaayo)

More translation jobs:

  • Knowing immunization schedules (Kasayoran kanus-a angay magpabakuna.)
  • Recognizing congestion (Pag-ila sa paghuot sa dughan)
  • Recognizing constipation (Pag-ila sa constipation kun ang kalisod paglibang)
  • Recognizing gas pains (Pag-ila sa sakit sa tiyan tungod sa panuhot)

#1 Rule in Cebuano translation: NO LITERAL TRANSLATION. Otherwise, you’ll end up changing the message.


After this translation, i’d got more translation jobs. The latest is just this month of June 2013 when i edited an already-translated info-material. I earned a little out of it. You can hire my professional services for Cebuano translation at negotiable rates. 🙂