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¿Tiene Pisto?

My first experience in a Spanish-speaking country was Costa Rica. There were some dichos (expressions) there but most things were either Spanish or Spanglish (such as “se renta”). Things got much more interesting in Nicaragua with lots of made-up words such as pachinga for the five gallon water bottles and chimbo for the 25 lb. gas tanks. I am learning dichos here but one that I hear often but it always seems out of place is pisto.

The meaning is simple, money. Things like “No tengo pisto” are very common. But, I always have to think about it. The post was inspired by Rocio saying something with pisto in it a few minutes ago. I decided to go to the authority and see what I could find out.

The authority is, of course, Google translate. Here is what I typed in:

¿Tiene pisto? No tengo pisto.

I am not sure what I expected back but I can assure you it was not

Does ratatouille? No ratatouille.

I have stopped laughing and am able to write this post. I am even thinking I should make some ratatouille. Will that translate? Google thinks so. Feeding my English back in and translating it to Spanish, I get

¿El pisto? No pisto.

Close enough. 🙂

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