So in cases like ”He said he’s gonna be late, AKA he’s sleeping,” or “I want you to do your homework soon, as in right now,” how would you translate “AKA” and “as in”?

They both essentially mean “what that really means is X” or that there is another reason why something is happening that is implied.

The closest I can think of is “c’est-à-dire” but that seems too formal for this case.

Are there any colloquial expressions that would fit here?

2 Answers 2


Yes, c'est-à-dire is a good translation. It's not necessarily formal, especially when pronounced c'tà-dire.

Il a dit qu'il allait être en retard, c'est-à-dire qu'il dort

Je veux que tu fasses tes devoirs maintenant, c'est-à-dire tout de suite.

Another option, less formal, to connote a bit more the sarcasm of your examples, would be donc en fait, which means "actually", as when you're revealing a twist:

Il a dit qu'il allait être en retard, donc en fait il dort (he says he'll be late, so let me tell you what this actually means: he's sleeping)

As for "soon, as in right now", there's a better specific expression:

Je veux que tu fasses tes devoirs maintenant là tout de suite.


You can use this phrase:en clair. It conveys the idea that it introduces some sort of clarification, and yet is mildly sarcastic. The phrase en d'autres termes is also a valid alternative.

Il a dit qu'il allait être en retard. En clair: il dort.

Je voudrais que tu fasses bientôt tes devoirs, en d'autres termes, que tu les fasses maintenant.

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