I'll think it over


You are listening to SoundCzech, Radio Prague's own Czech language programme which explores Czech idioms through song lyrics. Today's featured song is "Nejlíp jim bylo" which can be loosely translated as "Those were their best times", sung by the Moravian band Mňága a Žďorp. The song is from their 1995 album "Ryzí zlato" or "Pure gold". The phrase we'll be paying special attention to is "nechám si projít hlavou". Here is the song for you.

The lyrics are about a couple, once in love, but now growing more and more estranged. Our phrase is from the chorus where the lead singer says this poetic sentence: "I'll give another thought to where all things float. If everything is just a breath, like back then, the two of us at night on the staircase." "Nechám si projít hlavou" literally means "I'll let it go through my head". The actual meaning is "I'll think it over", "I'll give it another thought". You can now listen once again.

The word "nechám" is the first person singular of the verb "nechat" - to let. Very often you will hear the phrase as a piece of advice: "Nechej si to projít hlavou" - "why don't you give it another thought". In a less idiomatic way, you can say "promysli si to", which literally means "think it over". Here is the phrase one more time.

"Nechám si projít hlavou" is just one of many Czech phrases using the word "hlava" or "head". Here are another handful of them: "nejde mi to do hlavy", "it won't go into my head", that is "I can't understand it". "Jde mi z toho hlava kolem", literally "this makes my head spin", meaning "it's overwhelming, it's mindboggling". And finally "je to postavené na hlavu", literally "it's been turned on its head", meaning "it makes no sense". Thanks for listening today and if you'd like to practice today's phrase some more, you can find this episode as well as all the older lessons on Radio Prague's website www.radio.cz/english.