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  1. #1
    liyuefu is offline Newbie
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    Default What does 'there was no snap in his turtle' mean?

    Hi, The text I quoted is an excerpt of Friends, an American sitcom. What does 'there was no snap in his turtle' mean? Some Chinese say it means to have sex. I think so from the context. If it is true, why does it refer to sex? What are 'snap' and 'turtle'?

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    konungursvia's Avatar
    konungursvia is online now Key Member
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    Default Re: What does 'there was no snap in his turtle' mean?

    The snapping turtle bites quickly. The phrase means there was no action to match his words, or no strength to support his boasts.

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    Default Re: What does 'there was no snap in his turtle' mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by liyuefu View Post
    Hi, The text I quoted is an excerpt of Friends, an American sitcom. What does 'there was no snap in his turtle' mean? Some Chinese say it means to have sex. I think so from the context. If it is true, why does it refer to sex? What are 'snap' and 'turtle'?
    LOL.. That's so funny. In Chinese language the top part of penis (aka glans) is called 'a turtle's head'. I think that's why your friends thought this phrase had something to do with sex.

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    Searching for language is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: What does 'there was no snap in his turtle' mean?

    I've never heard that expression. However, I know that snapping turtles do snap and are quite vicious. We had one in a pond and the turtle killed our ducks. The turtle's shell was approx. 35 cm in diameter. Well, it's not really round, so perhaps it was the length.

  5. #5
    Ouisch's Avatar
    Ouisch is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: What does 'there was no snap in his turtle' mean?

    In this particular case, you are correct in presuming it is a sexual reference. Monica states: "Before me, there was no snap in his turtle for two years." Meaning that he'd been impotent for two years.

  6. #6
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    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Default Re: What does 'there was no snap in his turtle' mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ouisch View Post
    In this particular case, you are correct in presuming it is a sexual reference. Monica states: "Before me, there was no snap in his turtle for two years." Meaning that he'd been impotent for two years.
    The Br Eng idiom would be 'he'd been firing blanks for two years' - a reference to Blank (cartridge) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. ( not sure if this is British in origin - it's the sort of down-to-earth/concrete/technological language play that I'd think was typical of Am English - but it's what we'd say; that, or 'there's been no lead in his pencil for two years').

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  7. #7
    konungursvia's Avatar
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    Default Re: What does 'there was no snap in his turtle' mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    The Br Eng idiom would be 'he'd been firing blanks for two years' - a reference to Blank (cartridge) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. ( not sure if this is British in origin - it's the sort of down-to-earth/concrete/technological language play that I'd think was typical of Am English - but it's what we'd say; that, or 'there's been no lead in his pencil for two years').

    b
    I would have thought infertility was different from impotence. No snap in his turtle sounds like the latter. Both can translate into a lack of conception.

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    Ouisch's Avatar
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    Default Re: What does 'there was no snap in his turtle' mean?

    In AmE, "firing blanks" would be similar to "he had no lead in his pencil", both meaning that he was infertile, not impotent. That is, he was able to have sex but not make babies.

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    Default Re: What does 'there was no snap in his turtle' mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ouisch View Post
    In AmE, "firing blanks" would be similar to "he had no lead in his pencil", both meaning that he was infertile, not impotent. That is, he was able to have sex but not make babies.
    (Well explained. )

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