Dunces and doorheads

The Portuguese expression burro com uma porta, meaning to be very stupid (see the “horse meat/donkey” post) was very popular among teachers in Portuguese schools in the last century. Or so I am told by someone whose teacher must have considered him a dunce. I wrote that it was translated literally as “stupid as a door” but that would be burro como uma porta (como = as). In fact, it is more like stupid with a door (com = with). The gist of it is this: with some people’s brains the door will open and close many times, the same piece of knowledge comes in and then it goes straight out again and again, it never hangs around in the house. D’oh! It’s a bit like the English expression “it went in one ear and out the other”. I think burro is a great word for “donkey” … I can picture the braying beast’s toothy grin every time I hear that word. 🙂


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