Kuwaiti Slang

The Contemporary Traveler’s Indispensable Phrases

Photo by John Santos

Did you see those butch girls over there? They’re so cute! Shifti il Boyat? Shhalathum!

Where do you go cruising? Love Street? Wen itgizuun? Shari’ il Hub?

Whatever, she still has a beehive. Ayshay, lelheen ‘indaha poof.

Can I touch your teddy bear? Mekhalif ajees debdoobich?

The savory pudding at Shati’ al Watiya is amazing. Shhalat yireesh Shati’ al Watiya.

Mom, those people are so chic. They only drink fresh-squeezed juice. Yumma, hathela jakh. Bes yishriboon ‘aseer tazaj.

You don’t want that player, he gives out his number to a lot of girls. Ma tabeen hel imghazilchi, wayyid iraqim.

Shame! I can see your upper arms, you hussy. Wa khizyah! Yal bari’, znoodich tal’a.

Where can I buy an imitation Balenciaga bag? Wen agdar ashtiri jantat Balenciaga teqleed?

I think you can buy monkeys at the Friday Market. Athin tigdar tishtiri shuwathi ib Soug il Yim’a.

Gross, did you smell the sea-fart? Gita’, shametu fesu il bahar?

Who makes the better kebab, Kabab al Hijja or Kabab-ji? Ay kabab ahsan, Kabab al Hijja willa Kabab-ji?

I heard they opened another Starbucks at the Avenues Mall. Sima’t inna ftahaw Starbucks thani bil Avenues.