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mwtzzz January 06, 2017 08:27 AM

Bien pueda
Just got back from a couple weeks in Colombia over the holidays. Noticed that it's common for people to say "bien pueda" to mean "sigue" when you are asking for permission to do something ("Can I sit down here?" ... "Bien pueda")

Wondering if this expression is used in other parts of South America or Mexico?

AngelicaDeAlquezar January 06, 2017 11:51 AM

Not in Mexico.
To "allow" someone to sit down or to enter a place, we say "adelante" ("go ahead") or "pasa/siéntate (por favor)"... or just "por favor" with a hand gesture.
We don't say "sigue" either.

- ¿Puedo entrar?
- (Sí,) Pasa, por favor.

- ¿Me puedo sentar aquí?
- Claro. / Adelante. / Por favor.

- ¿Puedo pasar?
- Adelante.

aleCcowaN January 06, 2017 05:26 PM

In Argentina there's no such expression. But we use "¡Cómo no!" a lot, for the dismay of tourists and language students. An architect from Chicago I helped 20 years ago seemed to have a lot of troubles in shops because each time she asked "can I take a look?" she understood she was getting a resounding "No" as an answer. She couldn't explain the smiles when such harsh answer was given.

I explained to her that phrase to be short of a polite "How would someone decline your request?". On my part it took some time to me to get used to "Help yourself" not meaning they weren't telling me to go to hell.

AngelicaDeAlquezar January 06, 2017 07:28 PM

Ah yes, we also say "cómo no" quite often. It's a perfect synonym of "por supuesto". :)

Rusty January 06, 2017 07:57 PM

Very much used in Central America.

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