In my Spanish class last week, I was talking about how the recent economic trouble in the US had come at an inopportune moment for John McCain (a candidate for US president), right before the first debate, and I wanted to say "It was bad timing for him," but I couldn't think how to say it. I asked the teacher, but she couldn't think of anything, either.
I know I could say that the economic downturn "vino en un momento inoportuno," or "No le vino bien," but do those have the same nuance? How about "¡Qué mal momento!"?
Here are some ways we might use this in English, to help you understand how it is used.
- I got there with my wife just as my ex-wife was leaving.
- Wow, that was bad timing.
(on the phone)
- Hi, can I come over to see you?
- Ah, that's kind of bad timing right now.
- My tire blew out just when I was leaving for the ceremony.
- What bad timing!
We also use this in the opposite meaning with good/perfect timing. For example, when dinner guests arrive late, but just as we are sitting down to eat, we might say "Perfect timing!"