Filas & Faixas – 2 for 1

Fila (f)

Fila (line, row) is the term for a queue or line, not linha, even though that seems like a perfect fit. Be careful not to write or say filha (daughter) because if someone thinks you cut their daughter, they might cortar something of yours. In English, there are many words or phrases that can precede ‘line’, such as ‘jump the’ or ‘butt in’. And if you get really mixed up and end up saying “I jumped your daughter” (Eu tive relações com a sua filha), well, that might also provoke violence.

Cutting in line – Furar a fila or cortar a fila. The verb furar means to pierce or puncture something.

Faixa (f)

Faixa means lane, strip, sash, martial arts belt (faixa preta) music track, zone or crosswalk (faixa de pedestres). When trying to stay within your lane on the road, that lane is a faixa. Faixa can also be used to express a range such as faixa etária (age range) or faixa salarial (salary range).

Another way to express ‘approximate range’, but informally, is to use estar na casa de (to be in the house of) such as “ele está na casa de 20 anos” (he’s around 20 years old) or even estar no campo de…visão (to be in the field of…vision), for example. In English, we might say someone is “in the ballpark”, ballpark being the field where baseball is played.

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