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28 / 04 / 2009

WHAT THE HECK: meaning and examples

Good morning.

Today we look at another question from one of our readers:

hola! tengo otra duda, entiendo que heck vendría ser como hell (lo he buscado en el diccionario), pero no acabo de entender la función.

Example: "But do we care? Heck no. We just want great taste. And what makes chocolate great? Read on: for the pros tell all."
gracias! Miriam

Yes Miriam, you are correct; heck is a word that replaces the swear word hell. It is the equivalent of saying ostras in Spanish, for example, instead of hostia.

We use heck/hell in different ways. If you are a Daily Vitamin Plus! subscriber, you may want to review the series of 5 Daily Vitamins that we did about hell between the 28th of January and the 1st of February 2008.

In the example that you include, the first Spanish expression that comes to mind (and please forgive my language) is "y un huevo" or perhaps, "para nada", for those of you who would prefer to be more polite.

In other contexts it would be translated as carajo.

Example 1:
What the heck are you doing? (¿Qué carajo haces?)

I hope that answers your question, Miriam. If not, please post your queries in the Daily Vitamin Plus! forum section on our website (

Enjoy your day.

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