20 Hilarious Foreign Phrases English Needs To Borrow

English is a very complex language, arguably one of the most hard to learn as a foreign language – and yet, with all of its complexities, it falls short in a lot of ways. Germanic in origin, English has all sorts of words that it borrows from all other languages, but some languages have a handful phrases that would be very helpful in creating much more concise communication. Here are just a few golden phrases the English phrase could benefit from.


All men are prone to doing dumb things to make their wives angry, which makes this German word (pronounced DRAKH-in-foot-er) all but a necessity. The word, which translated means “dragon fodder” refers to a gift that a man gives his significant other to make up for something stupid he’s done.


Just about anyone who loves songs like “Gangnam Style” has probably done this before whether they’ve realized it or not. Translated from the French (pronounced YOWT), it is a verb that describes when people try to sing a song in a foreign language they don’t know so they make up nonsense words.


Just about everyone has that friend who likes to tell boring stories complaining about how hard his or her life is. While you can’t convey these feelings to someone else without being obvious, this Italian word (pronounces attack-a-BOAT-tony) sums that sentiment up in a single word.


This Dutch phrase (pronounced e-pey-BRER-in) is a word that all languages should use. It is a verb that means to pretend to look busy with important things while you’re really just goofing around.