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No es lo mismo: It's not the same, but it is "un chiste"

Puerto Rican band Circo remind us that a suspicion is, by definition, not the same as a confirmed fact. Here's the refrain:

 

No es lo mismo una sospecha que saberlo de verdad

A suspicion isn't the same as knowing it for sure

No es saberlo de verdad lo mismo que una sospecha

Knowing it for sure isn't the same as a suspicion

Captions 7-8, Circo - La sospecha

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BANNER PLACEHOLDER

The repeated refrain is reminiscent of a series of jokes in Spanish that start "No es lo mismo [decir]..." ("It's not the same [to say]..."). For example:

No es lo mismo decir: "me río en el baño" que "me baño en el río."

And the English translation?

It's not the same to say: "I laugh in the bathroom" as "I bathe in the river."

And that's funny? Well, the little joke is hinged on the fact that the verbs "reirse" ("to laugh") and "
bañarse" ("to bathe") have conjugations that sound just like the nouns "el río" ("the river") and "el baño" ("the bathroom"). And that's why flipping the words around is un chiste (a joke) only in Spanish. Just try translating a groan-worthy English "knock-knock" joke into another language...

You can find dozens
more "no-es-lo-mismo" chistes online with a simple search.

 

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