“ไม่เห็น(จะ)…เลย” (mâi hěn (jà)…loei) is a very common colloquial expression Thai people use in everyday life, to express disagreement or argue against what someone else said. The literal meaning of เห็น “hěn” is “to see.” So by using this expression to express that you disagree with someone, it’s as if you’re saying “I don’t see it (what you see).” or “I don’t see how (it is like what you said).” The word “เลย” [loei] at the end is used to emphasize the meaning. Sometimes, you might hear the word “ตรงไหน” [trong nǎi], which literally means “where” used instead. Below are some examples.

Example 1:

A: เมียผมสวยที่สุดในโลก
[mia phǒm sǔai tîi sùd nai lôke]
My wife is the prettiest woman on earth.
B: ไม่เห็นจะสวยเลย
[mâi hěn jà sǔai loei]
I don’t think so. (I don’t see how she is pretty.)

Example 2:

A: ที่นี่ไม่เห็นจะมีอะไรให้ทำเยอะแยะอย่างที่แกพูดเลย
[tîi nîi mâi hěn jà mii arai hâi tam yér yáe yàang tîi gae phûut loei]
This place doesn’t have a lot of things to do, like how you said at all.
B: ก็นี่มันตีสามนี่ รอให้ถึงเช้าก่อนสิ
[gâw nîi man tii sǎam nîi, raw hâi teǔng cháao gâwn sì]
Well, it’s 3AM. Wait until dawn.

Example 3:

A: ภาษาไทยง่ายจัง
[pǎa sǎa Thai ngâai jang]
Thai is so easy!
B; ไม่เห็นง่ายเลย
[mâi hěn ngâai loei]
I don’t think so.
A: ลองเรียนภาษาจีนดูสิ
[lawng rian pǎa sǎa chiin sì]
Well, try learning Chinese!

By the nature of its usage, it’s possible to come off as offensive or disrespectful, depending on who you use it with as well as how and in what situation you use it. Therefore, try to be careful. It is, however, generally acceptable and quite normal to use among friends.

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