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What means "Куда им до" in phrase:

Мне доводилось встречать много необычных вещей, но куда им до кроссовка, одержимого демонами

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  • Hi, this is not a translation service per-se, if you'll provide at list an evidence of at list of hint of effort to figure it out it would be way nicer. Also, both in English and in Russian both titles and sentences are uppercased, don't be lazy.
    – shabunc
    May 31, 2016 at 4:47
  • "куда (1) до" ≈ "разве (1) может сравниться с" May 31, 2016 at 5:45
  • "Мне доводилось встречать много необычных вещей, но разве они могут сравниться с кроссовком, одержимым демонами" May 31, 2016 at 5:45

1 Answer 1

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"Куда им до" usually used to show that object in the context is less superior in an ability to do something or power or the number of features than the object in the phrase.

Examples:

  1. "Куда им до меня/нас/его" - I/we/he is much better in something in comparison with a person in the context.
  2. "Куда им до танка" - They are too weak in comparison with a battle tank

Your particular example could be translated as "I've seen many unusual things but all of them looks ordinary compare to a shoe obsessed with daemons "

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  • I wonder if this до is related to the expression Мне не до этого = I have no time for that, I have other things to do (better things to do), I don't care about that. However, Мне не до тебя implies that I am more important than you, whereas from your explanation Куда им до тебя would imply that "they" are less important than "you", or they pale in comparison to you. I.e., the opposite meaning. Maybe the general idea is "one thing doesn't meet or can't attain the other"? either because of disdain or aloofness towards the other, or because of its own unworthiness in comparison to the other. May 31, 2016 at 11:10
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    "Мне не до тебя" doesn't imply "I am more important than you". It means "I am too busy with other things (which are more important or urgent than you), and that's why I don't have time for you". "Мне не до этого" is the same phrase for inanimate objects. Similar phrase is "У меня до этого руки не доходят" ("My hands don't reach it"). Imagine that you have a stack of things to do, and your hands walk along it, starting from the top. If your hands walk slower than new things are added, you'll never reach the things at the bottom. About those things you can say "У меня до этого руки не доходят".
    – Lara
    May 31, 2016 at 12:36
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    @ghostarbeiter, so, the meaning of "мне не до тебя." and "куда мне до тебя" is not opposite. But you are right, that in both cases "до" means that one thing can't attain another.
    – Lara
    May 31, 2016 at 12:39

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