"I do not kiss just anybody!"
Translation:Jag kysser inte vem som helst!
There are different opinions about this, but I'd say that a puss is a light kiss: shorter/quicker and it (typically) only involves the lips (and the lips are closed) - no tongue. For example, the cheek kiss, as in the common greeting in some countries, is a kindpuss (kind = cheek). It can sometimes be translated to English peck.
A kyss is longer and usually more romantic/passionate and would often (but not necessarily) involve a tongue or two.
Is there a skill that discusses vem som helst, när som helst, hur som helst osv., or is there a rule of thumb? I kind of get the gist of them but not how they translate to English.
Not sure if there's a rule or if this is what you're looking for... you generally use it in the end to imply anyone/thing at all. I think.
vad som helst - whatever and synonyms: whatsoever, whatnot, anything
var som helst - wherever and synonyms: anywhere, anyplace
när som helst - whenever and synonyms: anytime, at any time
vem som helst - whoever (this one i'm actually unsure about, 'whoever' would better translate to "vem som än...") but synonyms fits for sure: anyone, anybody
hur som helst - however (this i'm unsure about too. 'however' would better translate to "emellertid/däremot/dock) but the synonyms fits for sure: in any case, anyway, anyhow
Just an addendum:
"Hur som helst" can also be used as anyway/anyhow. "Hur som helst måste vi äta nu." (Anyway, we have to eat now.")
Vilken/vilket som helst (common/neuter, singular) = any. "Ta vilken flaska som helst." ("Take any [one] bottle.")
Vilka som helst (plural) = any/anyone. "Ta vilka flaskor som helst." ("Take any bottles [doesn't matter which ones].")
You can also say "hur something som helst", where something is an adjective or adverb. It's slightly trickier to translate, but for example "hur bra som helst" could be something like "very very good", "jag kan inte äta hur mycket som helst!" is something like "I can't eat unlimited amounts of food!", ..
Hmm nevermind I just found a chapter in Swedish Comprehensive Grammar that explains it very well. Google "som helst swedish comprehensive". There should be a link to books.google.com. Click that, and they should display a preview of the whole chapter (make sure it's 2013 version). Let me know if it doesn't work and I'll type it down.
In sentences like this one, we've translated it into "just anybody" with the "just", because otherwise, when you get to the reverse translation, you would get "I do not kiss anybody", which will mean "Jag kysser ingen" in Swedish. Those two sentences are not synonymous! :)
I want to add this to maybe be more clear: the reason "vem som helst" needs to be translated as "just anybody" in this sentence is that English generally uses "anybody" instead of somebody or nobody in negated sentences (and questions). Therefore, in a negated sentence, (I do not kiss anybody), "anybody" does not have the same meaning as it has in a positive sentence (you can tell anybody).
So, if we use this example instead:
NOT NEGATED: You can tell anybody – Du får berätta det för vem som helst
NEGATED: You can't tell anybody – Du får inte berätta det för någon
NEGATED: You can't tell just anybody – Du får inte berätta det för vem som helst.
vem som helst has the same meaning in both examples, but the meaning of anybody changes.
This might not make sense, but if you put a certain kind of emphasis on "anybody" it can mean the same thing. However, there are two different kinds of emphasis you could put on that word, and they'd mean two different things. One emphasis will make it mean "You can't tell anybody at all", while the other would mean "You can't tell just anybody". It's hard to explain, but the emphasis of the former is kind of "harsh", almost forcefull, and over the whole word, while the emphasis of the latter would kind of be like raising the pitch of your voice on the "any" of "anybody".
Anyway, I do think the default translation is much clearer and it does sound natural, but I thought that tidbit was worth sharing :)
I'm aware of that, but I still think it's more helpful not to accept the translation with just anybody (I mean anybody as opposed to just anybody) here since it would be misleading.
I know what you mean and yes it is very hard to explain to non native speakers.
Thank you. I was having a hard time distinguishing what Arnauti meant until I read your comment as to me in both of his English examples, the positive and negated use of anybody was exactly the same word. Then I realised that he meant a meaning that I wouldn't normally use in the first sentence with the different intonation. I had been using using the flat intonation in my head.
I wrote "Jag kysser inte bara vem som helst", and it said it was wrong. Is there any reason this would actually be wrong?
I think that follows from what I wrote in my comment starting I want to add …, have you read that one?
What about "bara någon" vs. "vem som helst"? Is there a difference between these two phrases?
Yes, bara någon is not used like this – it isn't a combination like that, if you see what I mean – it would be used like 'only someone'.
In recent years I've seen some younger women do it in Stockholm sort of half-heartedly but no, it's not common. Normally when you meet someone for the first time (whether in a business setting or at a party) you'd shake hands. It is however quite common to hug when you meet or say bye to a friend (at least among younger generations).
What is it that makes "Jag kysser inte bara någon" an incorrect translation?
bara någon is not used to mean 'just anyone' or 'whoever'. Its meaning is like "only someone".