Happy 46th birthday, Matthew McConaughey, acclaimed actor and constant source of wisdom that might not make sense. Hopefully, you're shirtless and cryptically pontificating somewhere right now. To celebrate this historic day, we gathered some of McConaughey's most baffling quotes and asked our resident high school English teacher, Matt Cheplic, to translate them into, well, English.
1. "People are going, 'You're the sexiest man in America.' And I'm like, 'No, no — alive!' Those extraterrestrials out there? Those dudes on Mars? They ain't got nothing on me, man. I'm sexy, and I'm alive. Fact!” (Details)
Translation: "I'm secretly worried that a space-dwelling race of supermen look better with their shirts off than I do. My true motivation for doing Interstellar was to meet scientists who can help me locate and destroy these muscular space beings."
2. "And to my hero, that’s who I chase. Now, when I was 15 years old, I had a very important person in my life come to me and say, “Who’s your hero?” And I said, “I don’t know, I’ve got to think about that. Give me a couple of weeks.” I come back two weeks later, this person comes up and says, “Who’s your hero?” I said, “I thought about it. It’s me in 10 years.” So I turned 25. Ten years later, that same person comes to me and says, “So, are you a hero?” And I was like, “Not even close! No, no no!” She said, “Why?” I said, “Because my hero’s me at 35.” So you see every day, every week, every month, and every year of my life, my hero’s always ten years away. I’m never going to be my hero. I’m not going to attain that. I know I’m not. And that’s just fine with me, because that keeps me with somebody to keep on chasing." (Academy Awards)
Translation: "It's quite possible that if you ask me a question, I'll spend decades jerking you around and not answering it."
3. "Those were actually the very first words I ever said on screen. 'Alright, alright, alright.' And do you know why I said 'alright' three times? I'm going to give you a callback to something I said five minutes ago. Because I'm in my car, I'm high, I've got my rock 'n' roll, but I don't have the chick. So I got three out of four that matter to me. So it's just alright, alright, alright! There's no fourth 'alright'. I gotta pull into the top notch and pick up the fourth." (Men's Health)
Translation: "Driving plus drugs plus loud music constitutes a progression that leads logically toward sex with a woman. If it doesn't, you might consider more drugs or possibly louder music. But looking like me doesn't hurt."
4. "If you want your hair to be thicker, cut it when the moon is about to be full—a heavy, full, waxing moon. Do not cut it when the moon's waning. Right now, it's 14 percent waxing on, it's a crescent, so you don't want to cut now. In about 10 days, the moon's going to be 94 percent full—that's a great time." (Elle)
Translation: "If you want your hair to be thicker, cut it at night—preferably outside. It'll be pretty dark out, which means you may miss most of the hair you're trying to cut, resulting in hair that is thicker."
5. "I love tuna fish. I add sweet corn Niblets. Do you know how good it tastes?” (People)
Translation: "I don't actually add sweet corn niblets. I was just looking for a place to work 'sweet corn niblets' into this conversation, and the opportunity presented itself."
6. "You get that, don’t you? We all have a frequency, where things are clicking. I can adapt better. I’m catching more green lights. You know what I mean?" (GQ)
Translation: "You don't know what I mean because you're at a red light."
7. "Rollin’ through yellow lights on my skateboard. Kiss the fire and walk away whistling." (original rap lyrics via GQ)
Translation: "I thought I was catching a lot of green lights, but now that I think about it, there have been a fair number of yellow ones, too.
8. "When you're seeing the character from the inside-out, when you're walking out every day and everything you see, smell and touch and observe is coming through that character and into you and it's making sense and you're the subject. You're the eye. You're first-person seeing it through that character's eyes. That doesn't always happen. But boy when it does, and it feels like they could put a blindfold on you and put you on a spaceship and take you to Neptune and you could hop off on the planet and they better have the sprock control and you get off that spaceship because you are going to behave as your man. That is a glorious feeling!" (SAG Awards via E!)
Translation: "If I insult you, hurt you, break several laws, destroy your property, sleep with you girlfriend while you're at work, hijack an aircraft, or 'go to Neptune,' possibly with the help of mind-altering narcotics, my character did it."
9. "Good ideas are free—or at least they should be. . . . The best advice comes from people who don’t give advice. . . . Always listen to your inner Jiminy Cricket. . . . When you get to certain parts in the path of life when you get to run downhill a bit, why trip yourself? . . . There’s bullshitters and liars, but the bullshitter lets you know he’s lying. And that’s why bullshit is great." (Details)
Translation: "I work in a town where no one is ever honest to anyone else. I've learned that, outside of an imaginary cricket, if anyone starts talking to me, I just run down the nearest hill."
10. "Life is a series of commas. Not periods.” (Details)
Translation: "I don't like to think about menstruation. I'm really glad I was born a dude."
11. "I just changed it on my birthday. It goes, 'Hey, this is McConaughey, Nov. 4, 2005, 36 times. Just keep livin' along the way. Talk to you. Later.'" (former answering machine recording via People)
Translation: (NO TRANSLATION AVAILABLE)