The new meaning of #ponele

Do you want to know the exact meaning of the word "ponele" in Argentina? We explain it in the following paragraphs.

In recent times, the idiom/neologism/lunfardism "ponele" acquired a new meaning in colloquial language. This probably happened only in Argentina; at least I have no news of what happened in other countries. In any case, for those who do not know its meaning, here is an enlightening guide.

Versión en español: El nuevo significado de #ponele

¿See you tomorrow? Ponele...
The word "ponele" is used as an alternative to "yes" and "no". In fact, should its use gets formalized, in the surveys that are normally answered with a "yes" or a "no" a third option should be added: "ponele". For example:

¿Do you know the meaning of the word "ponele"?

__ Yes
__ No
__ Ponele

After listening to it many times and in different situations, I managed to figure out its meaning. I can conclude, without fear of being wrong, that the word "ponele" is used in response to a question whose possible answers are "yes" and "no", when what you want to answer is neither one nor the other. In fact, almost always, "ponele" means this: no, but let's pretend yes.

For example, the woman asks her husband when he returns from the hairdresser: "Do you like my new hairstyle?" and the husband replies: "Ponele". If the wife knows the meaning of that answer, she will surely be very angry, because it means that her husband does not like the new hairstyle, but does not want to admit it. But there are good chances for the husband that his wife does not know what he wanted to answer, and instead of getting angry and/or practicing physical aggression, she just looks at him with a strange face. Or maybe she thinks that her husband meant yes, in which case she will surely be happy.

There are some drawbacks that may arise from the abuse of the expression "ponele". For example, one that may arise in a common context: someone serves me a cup of coffee; then I ask: "Did you put sugar in it?" and he answers me: "ponele". What do I have to understand? That he actually put sugar on the coffee, that he put some substance similar to sugar but he doesn't want to admit it, or that he gave me the order to put sugar by my own? It is a dilemma that will surely take a long time to answer.

Some other particular terms commonly used in Argentina (compiled in the Brief Dictionary of Argentine Words):

Meaning of "Che"

Meaning of "Amigo"

Meaning of "Bardo"

Meaning of "Capo"

Meaning of "Diego"

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