How to Speak Like a Mexicano: Chancletazo

In yet another one of the fascinating mysteries of Mexican slang, I bring you… the -azo.

This phenomenon is quite possibly my favorite part of learning Mexican Spanish. It’s not something they’ll teach you in school, even though it’s part of everyday language. I think the reason I love the -azo so much is because it’s so incredibly convenient, yet we have nothing like it in English.

Here’s the gist of it: Add the ending -azo onto any tangible noun, and it will translate to something like “a punch/hit/slap with a …”

I’ll give you some examples.

Mi hermano me dio un codazo = “My brother hit me with his elbow.”

Le dio un cabezazo al balón. = “He gave the ball a hit with his head.” (Often used in soccer, it’s the equivalent to the English term for heading the ball.)

A "cabezazo" by Chicharito (the David Beckham of Mexico)

My favorite is chancletazo, from the Mexican slang word chancleta, meaning “flip flop”. Jorge uses this one A LOT when killing cockroaches. Le voy a dar un chancletazo! =  “I’m going to smash him with my flip-flop.”

A few other examples:

sartenazo = a blow with a frying pan

rodillazo = a hit from the knee

toallazo = a towel snap

puñetazo = a punch (from the word puño, meaning “fist”)

avionazo = an airplane crash

There are other more specific uses for this ending, but I won’t confuse you with the subleties quite yet. 🙂

Bottom Line: Add the -azo ending onto ANY TANGIBLE THING and it will make sense. Anything that could possibly come into physical contact with you. Seriously.