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Da kann man nichts machen.

English translation: You can't do anything about it

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
German term or phrase:Da kann man nichts machen.
English translation:You can't do anything about it
Entered by: jerrie
Options:
- Contribute to this entry
- Include in personal glossary

07:24 May 20, 2002
German to English translations [Non-PRO]
/ Redewendung
German term or phrase: Da kann man nichts machen.
Obiges als Ausspruch der Hilf-/Ratlosigkeit, wenn man z.B. von einer Person abgelehnt wird. Gängige Redewendung gesucht.
Richard Krebs
You can't do anything about it
Explanation:
C'est la vie
What goes round comes round
That's life
There's nothing you can do about it


--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2002-05-20 08:03:04 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

What goes round comes round - is just another expression to suggest the futility/hopelessness of trying to be in charge of your destiny. Things happen and there\'s nothing you can do about it. On a deeper level it could be referring to retribution, or even previous lives! But it is commonly used as a general statement, with a shrug of the shoulders.
Selected response from:

jerrie
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:23
Grading comment
What goes round comes round bringt mich am weitesten. Danke an alle für die prompten Antworten. Ich werde KudoZ weiterempfehlen.
3 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +6there's nothing you can doKlaus Dorn
4 +2You can't do anything about it
jerrie
4 +1There's absolutely nothing you can do about it.
Sueg
4what goes around comes around
danilingua
4Not a lot you can do about that
Jens-Ancher Sonne
4"There is nothing one can do about it."
Сергей Лузан


Discussion entries: 1





  

Answers


5 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +6
there's nothing you can do


Explanation:
is the exact equivalent

to be less hopeless:

there's not much you can do

Klaus Dorn
Local time: 11:23
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in GermanGerman
PRO pts in pair: 1514

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Lydia Molea
0 min

agree  Сергей Лузан: Both versions are possible. "There's not too much you/one can do" seems possible here.
8 mins

agree  Sueg
9 mins

agree  Andrzej Lejman
13 mins

agree  Jeannie Graham
19 mins

agree  Endre Both
31 mins
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11 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
"There is nothing one can do about it."


Explanation:
"There is nothing could be done about it." Less common, I presume, and I'm less sure here.

Сергей Лузан
Russian Federation
Local time: 11:23
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in pair: 420
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17 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +2
You can't do anything about it


Explanation:
C'est la vie
What goes round comes round
That's life
There's nothing you can do about it


--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2002-05-20 08:03:04 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

What goes round comes round - is just another expression to suggest the futility/hopelessness of trying to be in charge of your destiny. Things happen and there\'s nothing you can do about it. On a deeper level it could be referring to retribution, or even previous lives! But it is commonly used as a general statement, with a shrug of the shoulders.

jerrie
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:23
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 1469
Grading comment
What goes round comes round bringt mich am weitesten. Danke an alle für die prompten Antworten. Ich werde KudoZ weiterempfehlen.

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Elvira Stoianov
11 mins
  -> Thanks

agree  Сергей Лузан: Quite a definition. Heard many times in the movies I used to translate. It just didn't occur to me at once.
55 mins
  -> Thanks
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19 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
There's absolutely nothing you can do about it.


Explanation:
Just an emphatic form to underline the "Hilflosigkeit"

Sueg
Austria
Local time: 10:23
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 136

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Сергей Лузан: Sounds quite emphatic.
56 mins
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10 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
Not a lot you can do about that


Explanation:
While I agrre with the above stated translations I would just like to add a more laid back attitude. At least I have seen some Germans use these words with the resigned shrug of the shoulders.

Jens-Ancher Sonne
Local time: 10:23
Native speaker of: Native in DanishDanish
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12 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
what goes around comes around


Explanation:
bedeutet:; wie man in den Wald hineinruft, so schallt es auch wieder heraus

Oder

was ich aussende, kommt zu mir zurück.

Ich sehe hier keine Äquivalenz zu 'da kann man nichts machen'

danilingua
Germany
Local time: 10:23
Native speaker of: Native in GermanGerman
PRO pts in pair: 24
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