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Meaning of "con cualquiera"

I translated "No hablamos con cualquiera" as "We don't talk to anyone", but the correct answer was "We don't talk to just anyone". These mean quite different things, but according to my dictionary "cualquiera" simply means "anyone". Can someone explain this, please?

May 1, 2012



If you want to say 'we don't talk to anyone' you could use 'no hablamos con nadie'. Constructions with 'ningún' are also possible. 'cualquiera' has a connotation of 'it doesn't matter who' .


It's my understanding that 'cualquiera' has a connotation of "it doesn't matter who" as well, which is why the correct english sentence makes even less sense. "We don't talk to anyone" basically means "we talk to no one" which is why you would use "No hablamos con nadie" in spanish--I get that--but "We don't talk to just anyone" means that it matters very much who you're talking to. You'll talk only to certain people. I could see 'cualquiera' being used in the positive version of this sentence, i.e., "Hablamos con cualquier," meaning "We would talk with anyone." Am I over-thinking this?


Think of the 'cualquiera' as being negated, too. "We don't talk to it doesn't matter whom" becomes "It does matter whom we talk to". "Non cualquiera" means "not just anyone". If you want to express "not anyone", you have to resort to the "nadie" or "ningún" constructions.


Ahhh I get it! That makes perfect sense! My brain hurts a little, though :(


The above is right. Also Spanish uses double negatives. Technically "anyone" implies that there is someone. In Spanish to say you don't talk to anyone you have to say the equivalent of the English "you don't talk to no one". Sounds weird to English speakers but it's correct in spanish

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