I was watching "Goonies" last night, with Spanish subtitles.

When the kids said, "sh*t" it was translated as "Rayas."

Doesn't "Rayas" mean "stripes"?

Why was that word chosen as the translation?

BTW, when an English speaker / Spanish learner wants to practice speaking Spanish with another learner, they could inquire, "Anyone for Tienes?"

  • 9
    Are you sure it was rayas and not rayos?
    – mdewey
    Commented Apr 26, 2016 at 13:34
  • 7
    "Rayas" as a translation for "shit" doesn't make much sense. "Rayos", on the other hand, is a poor but understandable translation for "shit" if the translator wanted a bowdlerized version. "Rayos", "rayos y centellas", or "truenos, rayos y centellas" is mild swearing. If the original word had been a minced oath such us "shoot" instead of a bold "shit", "rayos" could have been a good translation.
    – Yay
    Commented Apr 26, 2016 at 13:53
  • 1
    do not ever use google translator. Word reference and Linguee are much better tools. Commented Apr 26, 2016 at 15:16
  • 2
    It's imposible for shit to be translated as rayas, that's clearly a typo. I've seen it translated as rayos. The word you say is not even close.
    – Schwale
    Commented Apr 26, 2016 at 15:50
  • 1
    "Centella" just means "spark" (English cognate: scintilla), or, less frequently, "ball lighting", but it's an expression, so its meaning can't be deduced from the words separately. In this thread there are some good English equivalents like "Holy bill of rights, Batman!" or "Rats! Foiled again!"
    – Yay
    Commented Apr 26, 2016 at 15:54

1 Answer 1


Just to summarise the discussion in comments

We agreed that the writer of the subtitles meant to write rayos.

The remaining issue is the thorny question of how you translate obscenities from one language into another bearing in mind the context, the person who said it, the audience and so on. The exclamation 'shit!' is used for disappointment or surprise or a mixture of both. It seems to have lost some of its force over the years and although most careful speakers would not use it in front of children or in a formal setting. Just what the Spanish equivalent is I will leave to the Spanish speakers.

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