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Lesson Transcript

Fernando: How Do You Feel about My Spanish Cooking?
JP: Meh!
Fernando: What? All right. That was JP.
JP: Hi, everyone! [*]
Fernando: How are you?
JP: I’m fine. Thanks, Fernando. How are you?
Fernando: I’m good.
JP: I’m just kidding about your cooking. All right, Fernando, why don’t you tell us what we’re talking about in this lesson?
Fernando: Sure thing! In this lesson, you will learn about question formation. This conversation takes place at the dinner table and the conversation is between Marco and Eva. The speakers will be using the familiar register.
JP: We’re going to go to the dinner table with Marco and Eva. Are you ready?
Fernando: Yes.
Lesson Conversation + Translation
(1 time natural native speed, 1 time slowly, 1 time with translation)
(1 time natural native speed)
Marco: ¿Qué tal la sopa? ¿Te gusta?
Eva: Sí, está rica.
Marco: ¿Te sirvo más?
Eva: Aún no, pero gracias.
English Host: Let’s hear it again, dramatic speed.
Marco: ¿Qué tal la sopa? ¿Te gusta?
Eva: Sí, está rica.
Marco: ¿Te sirvo más?
Eva: Aún no, pero gracias.
English Host: One more time with the translation.
Marco: ¿Qué tal la sopa? ¿Te gusta?
JP: How is the soup? Do you like it?
Eva: Sí, está rica.
JP: Yes, it's good.
Marco: ¿Te sirvo más?
JP: Shall I serve you some more?
Eva: Aún no, pero gracias.
JP: Not yet, but thanks.
JP: All right, Fernando, we’re back and we’re talking about soups today. We really are.
Fernando: Yes. I just had soup, actually.
JP: Did you?
Fernando: Yes.
JP: How was it? ¿Qué tal?
Fernando: [*]
JP: All right. We need to teach these words first before we talk about your soup, Fernando.
Fernando: Yes, that’s true, that’s true, sorry.
JP: Okay. So, Marco asked Eva how the soup was.
Fernando: ¿Qué tal la sopa?
JP: ¿Qué tal la sopa? Now, sopa means “soup.”
Fernando: Yes.
JP: And this question, ¿qué tal?
Fernando: “How is it?”
JP: So, we’re kind of asking for a description, but really, Marco is asking for approval.
Fernando: Yeah, yeah, exactly, you know. ¿Qué tal la sopa?
JP: ¿Qué tal la sopa?
Fernando: And he actually follows up with - ¿Te gusta?
JP: ¿Te gusta? “Do you like it?” And Eva says, “Yes, it’s delicious.”
Fernando: Sí, está rica.
JP: Now, sí obviously means “yes.” Está rica. “It’s delicious.”
Fernando: Because la sopa is a feminine.
JP: Okay, that’s why it’s rica, right?
Fernando: Yes.
JP: The masculine form would be rico.
Fernando: Mm-hmm.
JP: And when you use rico or rica with estar, it usually means a pleasant sensual experience. So, mmm, delicious! Sí, está rica. Marco wants to know if she wants more.
Fernando: ¿Te sirvo más?
JP: ¿Te sirvo más? Más means “more.” And the verb is servir, which means “to serve.”
Fernando: Mm-hmm.
JP: So, he’s basically saying, “Shall I serve you more?” ¿Te sirvo más?
Fernando: Eva responds, Aún no, pero gracias.
JP: Aún no “not yet.”
Fernando: I think she’s still working on her soup.
JP: She is, and maybe she doesn’t really like it.
Fernando: Maybe, yeah. I get that. I mean I don’t get that, no, no.
JP: But she’s still trying to be gracious.
Fernando: Of course.
JP: By saying gracias, pero gracias “but thank you.” Let’s take a look at some of the vocabulary.
Fernando: ¿qué tal? [natural native speed]
JP: how are you, how is it
Fernando: ¿qué tal? [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Fernando: ¿qué tal? [natural native speed]
Fernando: la sopa [natural native speed]
JP: soup
Fernando: la sopa [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Fernando: la sopa [natural native speed]
Fernando: rico [natural native speed]
JP: tasty, delicious, rich
Fernando: rico [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Fernando: rico [natural native speed]
Fernando: servir [natural native speed]
JP: to be useful, to serve, to be good for
Fernando: servir [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Fernando: servir [natural native speed]
Fernando: aún no [natural native speed]
JP: not yet
Fernando: aún no [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Fernando: aún no [natural native speed]
JP: All right, Fernando, let’s talk about some of these words. What are we gonna start with today?
Fernando: I think we should start with ¿qué tal?
JP: ¿Qué tal? In the dialogue, we heard - ¿Qué tal la sopa? Now, if you hear qué tal by itself, the person is probably asking you, “How are you?”
Fernando: ¿Qué tal?
JP: ¿Qué tal? But when we follow it with la sopa, it’s “How was the soup?”
Fernando: ¿Qué tal la sopa?
JP: ¿Qué tal la sopa?
Fernando: ¿Qué tal la pelicula?
JP: Mm-hmm, “How is the movie?”
Fernando: Right.
JP: So, qué tal, when you want somebody’s opinion of something, you can ask for ¿qué tal?
Fernando: ¿Qué tal? Yes.
JP: Okay, cool, ¿qué tal? What’s next?
Fernando: la sopa
JP: La sopa. Now, la sopa “soup,” Fernando, you’re kind of an expert on various kinds of soup at this point.
Fernando: Emphasis on the “kind of.”
JP: You’re kind of an expert?
Fernando: I’m kind of an expert. Yeah, soup is literally the liquid nourishment.
JP: Yes, liquid nourishment, very good.
Fernando: Mm-hmm.
JP: Now, for most of us, soup just means anything that’s liquid, but, you know, for cooks and chefs, there is soup and there is broth.
Fernando: consommé
JP: And consommé and…
Fernando: And Bouillon and all these different kind of soups.
JP: There’s all kinds of technical terms.
Fernando: Yes.
JP: But soup, for the most of us covers it all.
Fernando: Mm-hmm.
JP: Okay, la sopa.
Fernando: La sopa. Next word, rico.
JP: Rico. I mentioned when we’re talking about the dialogue that when you estar with rico, it means “tasty” or “delicious.” Something sensual at least, because you can get a massage and say, Oh que rico.
Fernando: Está rico, está rico
JP: “It feels good.” So, it’s a sensual experience, it feels good. Rico literally means “rich” and when you use it with ser which means “to be” ser rico is “to be a rich person.”
Fernando: Yes, I was about to say that, but thank you.
JP: Okay.
Fernando: The next word, servir.
JP: Servir “to serve.” In this dialogue, Marco is asking Eva if she wanted him to serve her more.
Fernando: ¿Te sirvo más?
JP: ¿Te sirvo más? I think you heard there’s a little stem change, the you’ll form servir- servo. The vowel in the stem changes to servo. There’s another way to use servir, which is not in this dialogue, but servir can also mean “to be useful.” So, if you wanna call someone “useless,” you can say, “What are you good for?”
Fernando: [*]
JP: [*] Okay. If you hear that, it means somebody thinks you’re useless.
Fernando: You might wanna say, if you’re asking, “What are you good for?” [*]
JP: But in this dialogue, we went with the first definition.
Fernando: Yes.
JP: Which is “to serve,” right? To serve food, servir. And the last one?
Fernando: Last one is aún no.
JP: Aún no “not yet,” aún no. The word for “not” is no and the word for “yet”?
Fernando: aún
JP: Aún. It means “still.” So “still no / not yet” aún no.
Fernando: Yes. I think it’s time to move on the grammar section.
JP: Oh, you love the grammar section.
Fernando: I do because this is when I don’t talk.
JP: You do talk, Fernando. I need you to give the examples.
Fernando: All right, fine.
Fernando: What are we focusing on today, JP?
JP: Well, this is a very easy one for me to teach today, because we’re talking about question formation.
Fernando: Okay.
JP: Okay. Now, in some languages like English, there’s grammar in question formation.
Fernando: What?
JP: Yes. When we ask a question, you know, the word order changes and the “wh-” words has to be at the beginning, and there’s an auxiliary verb and it’s crazy. In Spanish, it’s very easy to make a question. So, let me tell you about the two kinds of questions in Spanish. The first kind of question I wanna talk about is the question that requests specific information. And for those questions, we always use an interrogative pronoun. In English, we call them sometimes, “wh-” words because they usually start with “wh-”; who, what, when, where, and why. So, if you’re using one of those interrogative pronouns, that’s requesting specific information. And in Spanish, you can use an interrogative pronoun to request specific information as well; quién, qué, dónde, cuándo, cuál, cómo.
Fernando: Yes, some of those.
JP: Those are all questions, right?
Fernando: Mm-hmm.
JP: You can ask a question using those question words. Now, there’s another kind of question and these are questions with yes/no answers.
Fernando: I think this is where I ask you a question, JP. So let me think of something, oh, ¿te gusta esta lección?
JP: ¿Te gusta esta lección? “Do you like this lesson?” Now, my job is to respond yes or no. Before, I do…
Fernando: Just answer the question, JP.
JP: Okay, I’ll answer the question. Yes, I like this lesson.
Fernando: Thank you.
JP: Okay. Now, let’s take a look at this question, ¿Te gusta esta lección? If we took away the question mark to that question and added a period, it would be a grammatical sentence in Spanish, Te gusta la lección. “You like this lesson.”
Fernando: Yes.
JP: All we did to make it a question is remove the period and add the question mark. Now, a lot of you are saying, it’s a podcast. I can’t see you remove the period and put on the question marks. What we do audibly to make something a question is change the intonation. So, we use question intonation.
Fernando: ¿Te gusta esta lección?
JP: Now, if you just listen for intonation, you’ll hear nah, nah, nah, nah, nah? Okay.
Fernando: I don’t sound like that, JP.
JP: Yes, you sound exactly like that.
Fernando: Okay. Well, fine. Yes. No, that’s a good point you make.
JP: Okay. Question intonation, I used to tell students that it’s Scooby-Doo, right? ‘Cause Scooby-Doo couldn’t talk because he’s a dog, but he always do, urgh? That’s intonation, right?
Fernando: That’s intonation, yes.
JP: It’s dog intonation, but Spanish question intonation is similar.
Fernando: I’m glad I was the leading man to Scooby-Doo.
JP: You can use intonation to ask yes-or-no questions. The other way to ask yes-or-no questions is to put a tag question on there, right Fernando?
Fernando: There you go, ¿verdad?
JP: I just did it.
Fernando: Yes.
JP: ¿Verdad? So, if you wanna employ a tag question, all you had to do is put one of these little tag questions at the end of a sentence. In Spanish, those are like ¿verdad? and ¿no? It’s easy, ¿no? ¿o no es así?
Fernando: Mm-hmm.
JP: As an example, I could say, “We’re all going to the party.”
Fernando: Todas vamos a la fiesta.
JP: And now, we can make it a question with a tag question by saying, “We’re all going to the party, right?”
Fernando: Todas vamos a la fiesta, ¿verdad?
JP: Or, Todas vamos a la fiesta, ¿no?
Fernando: “We’re going to the party, no?”
JP: You notice that it sounds a little latino when somebody says no at the end of a sentence.
Fernando: That’s why I don’t use that no.
JP: All right. You use that in English too, no?
Fernando: Um, JP.


JP: For now though, I think it’s time to go, so ¡Hasta luego!
Fernando: ¡Adiós!


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