In short – in Mexico ‘te late’ is a colloquial way of asking if you like something OR feel like doing something. The verb ‘latir’ translates as ‘to beat’ (think beating hearts), so ‘te late’ literally refers to the fact that the person you´re talking to likes something so much that it makes their heart beat (faster, presumably!).
Let’s take a look at this amazing – and VERY popular – Mexican expression!
Uses / Meanings of ‘te late’
- To ask someone if they like something
- To ask someone if they agree with a plan/proposal
- As a way of saying that you have a hunch about something (‘me late‘)
To ask someone if they like something
If you find yourself on the receiving end of a ‘¿te late?’, well, you´ve just been asked if you like whatever it is that you´re talking about!
¿Te late el fútbol?
Sí, es mi mero mole.*
Do you like football?
Yeah, it’s my jam.
*Erika´s note – ‘(es mi) mero mole’ is a Mexican expression that’s used in a similar way to the English ‘it´s my jam’.
You can use ‘me late’ to indicate that YOU like something –
Me late un buen Renata.
I really like Renata.
Ya sé que te late Harry Potter, por eso te compré el nuevo libro.
¡Sí! Me late un buen, ¡gracias!
I know you like Harry Potter a lot, so I bought you the new book.
Yeah! I love Harry Potter, thanks!
To ask someone if they agree with a plan/proposal
‘Te late’ is also a super common way of asking someone if they agree with a plan / proposal.
The person you´re speaking to will often respond with a ‘me late’ if they agree, or a ‘no me late’ if they don´t.
Si pasas los exámenes, te doy permiso de salir con tus amigos. ¿Te late?
If you pass the exams, I’ll let you hang out with your friends. Sound good?
¿Te parece si hoy nos dormimos temprano y mañana terminamos el trabajo?
Va, me late.*
How about if we go to sleep early and finish our work tomorrow?
Okay, sounds good.
*Erika´s note – in this context, ‘me late’ is a bit like the English ‘sounds good’; be sure to check out our article on all the different ways to say ‘sounds good’ in Spanish if you´d like even more alternatives!
As a way of saying that you have a hunch about something
‘Me late’ can also be used to say that you have a hunch about something.
It´s similar in meaning to the phrase ‘tengo una corazonada’, which is just another way of saying ‘I have a hunch’ (literally a ‘sign from the heart’) in Spanish!
Me late que ya no vamos a alcanzar boletos para para las carreras.
I have a hunch we’re not gonna get tickets to the races.
Me late que esta vez sí me van a dar la beca para estudiar en Canadá.
I have a feeling that this time I’ll get the scholarship to study in Canada.
‘Te late‘ pronunciation
You’ll have no difficulty pronouncing ‘te late’.
The word ‘te’ sounds like ‘teh’, while ‘late’ is said like ‘lah’ and ‘teh’.
/ teh lah-teh /
Similar expressions to ‘te late’
If someone asks you ‘¿Te vibra?’, they´re asking if you like OR trust the person/thing in question.
You´d say ‘me vibra’ or ‘no me vibra’ when speaking in the first person.
¿Te vibra ese wey?
Sí, pero el otro no me late.
Do you trust that dude?
Yeah, but I’m not sure about the other guy.
El reggaetón no me vibra, la verdad.
I don’t really dig reggaeton, to be honest.
This one´s super popular amongst young people, but it´s NOT to be used in formal situations.
‘Te mama’ means that you REALLY like something (i.e., you f***ing like something).
Just remember that, just like it´s English equivalent, it´s a somewhat vulgar expression!
¿Otra vez pediste pizza?
Sí, me mama.
Did you order pizza again?
Yeah, I f***ing love it.
¿Vas a ver la pelea?
Claro, me mama el Canelo.
Are you going to watch the fight?
Sure, I f***ing love Canelo.
That´s all for today, folks!
Just remember that if something ‘te late’, it really makes your heart vibrate with joy.
Oh, and your collection of interesting Mexican phrases wouldn’t be complete without the phrase ‘a toda madre’. Be sure to check it out next!