Learn Spanish/English Phrases (all levels, both languages): echar a perder
Hi fellow Spanish Addicts! "Learn Spanish/English Phrases" is a thread started by our friend Renae that I will post as often as I can in her absence that will focus on giving us the tools to understand the phrases in Spanish that cannot be translated word for word! Phrases are one of the keys to translating rapidly and becoming conversational quickly.
This is how it works:
Read the Spanish phrase of the day.
Read any alternate wording I may have included
Read the example sentences in Spanish
Try to guess the meaning of the Spanish phrase
Only then read the English translation
Use the Spanish phrase in your own sentence with an English translation included in italics.
Nota: Si estás practicando inglés, esribes una frase en inglés y después en español.
The best answer will be chosen based on creativity, votes and correct phraseology in a sentence. It will also be entered in the SpanishDict phrasebook as an example sentence. You will go down in SpanishDict posterity! Remember to click on "watch this question" as your answer needs to have all suggested corrections in order to be used in the phrasebook.
Note: Participating by following the six steps above, including writing your own sentence, rewards your efforts with the ability to retain the new phrase in your memory.
Our phrase is:
echar a perder
Si como en aquel restaurante voy a echar a perder mi dieta.
If I eat in that restaurant, I'm going to mess up my diet.
English phrase translation:
to ruin, to spoil, to mess up, to go bad
Synonyms for "echar a perder": estropear, arruinar, destrozar, descomponer
It can be pronominal: echarse a perder, estropearse, descomponerse
I don't believe that "echar a perder a un niño" is widely used to mean "to spoil a child". I think that "mimar a un niño" would be the better choice.
La lluvia echó a perder los fuegos artificiales.
The rain spoiled the fireworks.
Su mal genio y irresponsabilidad en el trabajo ha echado a perder su carrera de una cantante famosa.
Her bad temper and irresponsibility in the job has ruined her career of a famous singer.
Se va a echar a perder la lechuga si no la pones en el refrigerador.
The lettuce is going to become spoiled if you don't put it in the refrigerator.
EDIT .Le dije a mi amigo que no apareciera a la entrevista de trabajo con el anillo de nariz y los jeans pero no me escuchó y echó a perder su oportunidad de trabajo
Dije a mi amigo no aparecer para la entrevista de trabajo con el anillo de nariz y los jeans pero él no me escucharía y echó a perder sus ocasiones para el trabajo.
I told my friend not to appear for the job interview with the nose ring and jeans, but he would not listen to me and ruined his chances for the job.
El plan para hacer fiesta está echado a perder ahora que sus padres regresaron un día antes.
The plan to have a party is ruined now that his parents came back a day earlier.
Demasiados cocineros estropean el caldo.
Too many cooks spoil the broth.
No compré un billete de lotería y que echó a perder mis posibilidades de ganar.
I did not buy a lottery ticket and that spoiled my chances of winning.