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Natalia: ¿Qué tal? Soy Natalia.
Carlos: What’s going on? My name is Carlos. “I’m totally aroused to meet her.” Hello and welcome back to Spanishpod101.com the fastest, easiest and most fun way to learn Spanish. And I’m joined in the studio by...
Natalia: Natalia.
Carlos: What’s going on, Naty? How are you doing?
Natalia: I’m doing really good, what’s with that title?
Carlos: I don’t know we are going to find out soon aren’t we? You know Naty, you warned me about today’s lesson.
Natalia: I did, I did.
Carlos: What’s the mystery?
Natalia: In this lesson, you will learn about the periphrastic constructions.
Carlos: Okay, yes, words like that make me nervous.
Natalia: Well, after this you won’t be, Carlos. Relax a little, we are still with Gabriela and Alejandro.
Carlos: And did she still make another mistake that could be taken sexually?
Natalia: Of course, so you know, so that’s like an informal situation for sure.
Carlos: Let’s listen to the conversation.
ALEJANDRO: Gaby, ya estamos por llegar a la casa de mi tía… ¿Todo bien?
GABRIELA: Sí, creo que va a ser muy divertido. Estoy super excitada por conocerla. ¿Y tú?
ALEJANDRO: Jeje… No tenía tantas expectativas, o sea, la amo, pero… jeje…
GABRIELA: ¿¡Qué dije!? ¿excitada? ¡Quise decir emocionada! Tienes la mente cochina. Sabes a lo que voy. No jodas.
ALEJANDRO: ¿Pero acaso qué he dicho? Jeje…
ALEJANDRO: Gabby, we are about to arrive at my aunt's house. Everything OK?
GABRIELA: Yes, I think that it is going to be a lot of fun. I am totally aroused to meet her. And you?
ALEJANDRO: Hehe... My hopes were not that high, I mean, I love her, but, hehe...
GABRIELA: What did I say? Aroused? I meant to say excited! You have got a dirty mind. You know what I mean. Quit giving me a hard time.
ALEJANDRO: But what did I say? Hehe...
Carlos: Now listen, Naty. Imagine if, wait, oh my God, I’m meeting your family.
Natalia: No, no, no Carlos, that would be wrong to say, “hi, I am so aroused to meet you”.
Carlos: The woman would look at me like “huh?”
Natalia: Imagine if somebody did that one like meeting a family member.
Carlos: That would be funny.
Natalia: That would be funny like “hi, nice to meet you grandma, I’m very aroused to meet…” No, “hi, nice to meet you Carlos’ grandfather, I’m very aroused to meet you.”
Carlos: You might make the man smile though. Carlos, I like her!
Natalia: Pretty much.
Carlos: Okay, now it’s time look at the vocabulary section of today’s lesson guide. Here we are going to break these words down giving you the word class and translation of each. ¿Todos preparados? Bien. First we have a verbal phrase.
Natalia: “Estar por”, “to be about”, “to do something”. “Es-tar por”, “estar por”.
Carlos: And we hear it in this example...
Natalia: “Estoy por terminar, espérame un momentico”.
Carlos: “I’m about to finish, wait for me just a sec.” Moving on, we’ll study an adjective.
Natalia: “Emocionado, emocionada”.
Carlos: “Excited”, “touched.”
Natalia: “E-mo-cio-na-do, e-mo-cio-na-da”, “emocionado, emocionada”.
Carlos: As in the example...
Natalia: “Estamos emocionados por lo que nos dices”.
Carlos: “We are excited about what you tell us.” And we’ll go to another adjective.
Natalia: “Excitado, excitada”.
Carlos: “Aroused.”
Natalia: “Ex-ci-ta-do, ex-ci-ta-da”, “excitado, excitada”.
Carlos: And an example for this would be...
Natalia: “Martín y Claudia estuvieron tan excitados durante la cena de su aniversario que salieron sin terminar la comida”.
Carlos: “Martín and Claudia were so aroused during their anniversary dinner that they left without finishing their meal.”
Natalia: Next.
Carlos: This time we’ll hear a feminine noun.
Natalia: “Expectativa”.
Carlos: “Expectation”, “hope.”
Natalia: “Ex-pec-ta-ti-va”, “expectativa”.
Carlos: An example of this would be...
Natalia: “Tengo muchas expectativas para esta colaboración”.
Carlos: “I have high hopes for this collaboration.” And now another adjective.
Natalia: “Cochino, cochina”.
Carlos: “Dirty.”
Natalia: “Co-chi-no, co-chi-na”, “cochino, cochina”.
Carlos: And in context we have...
Natalia: “¿Y por qué te vas a poner esa camisa si está cochina?”
Carlos: “And why are you going to wear that shirt if it’s dirty?” And we’ll finish up with a feminine noun.
Natalia: “Mente”.
Carlos: “Mind.”
Natalia: “Men-te”, “mente”.
Carlos: And one more sample sentence to seal the deal.
Natalia: “¿Qué se te viene a la mente?”
Carlos: “What comes to mind?”
Natalia: I want to hear how good your intonation is, let’s hear you say “I’m excited to be here”.
Carlos: I’m excited to be here!
Natalia: Carlos. In Spanish.
Carlos: Oh. “¡Estoy emocionado de estar aquí!”
Natalia: ¿Cómo?
Carlos: “¡Estoy emocionado de estar aquí!”
Natalia: No, no, no. You’ve got to do it with emotion.
Carlos: “¡Estoy emocionado de estar aquí!”
Natalia: No, emocionadísimo.
Carlos: “¡Estoy emocionadísimo de estar aquí!” Alright, I’ve seen enough of that. Alright, let’s have a closer look for the usage of some of the words.
Natalia: The first word phrase we’ll look at is “emocionado”. Don’t let this one fool you, it doesn’t mean emotional.
Carlos: No?
Natalia: Although that would make sense but it actually means excited, not in the sexual sense.
Carlos: That never entered my mind for a second.
Natalia: Carlos, come on. The word “emocionado” it’s an adjective which is really the past participle of the verb “emocionar” which means “causa emoción”.
Carlos: Okay, so how was it used in today’s conversation?
Natalia: Gabriela makes another gaffe and after the fact that exclaims “¡Quise decir emocionada!”
Carlos: “I meant to say excited.”
Natalia: Okay, here we go. “Excitado”.
Carlos: “Excitado”.
Natalia: Carlos, okay.
Carlos: “Excitado”.
Natalia: Pay attention! Well, at least he’s not going to forget the word.
Carlos: I’m not. “Excitado”.
Natalia: Okay, in this word “excitado” it’s also an adjective which is really the past participle of the verb “excitar” which means “to arouse” in the sexual sense. Wipe that smile off your face!
Carlos: So “excitado” means “arouse”?
Natalia: Oh my God! Look at …
Carlos: Now, I can see why Gabriela is embarrassed. I mean come on.
Natalia: You know well, this is the mistake that Gabriela makes, referring to Alejandro’s aunt Gabriela says “Estoy super excitada por conocerla”.
Carlos: “I’m really aroused to meet her.” Come on that’s funny.
Natalia: Let’s learn the feminine noun “excitación”, “arousal”, while we are on this one.
Carlos: Consider it learned.
Natalia: “Expectativa”.
Carlos: “Expectativa”.
Natalia: This feminine noun means “expectation” or “hope.” And you’ll often find it in the plural form, “expectativas” and after the verb “tener”. “Tener expectativas”.
Carlos: And what does that mean?
Natalia: “Tener expectativas” is “to have expectations” and “tener muchas expectativas” is like having high hopes.
Carlos: Oh wait, wait. This is in today’s conversation.
Natalia: Yes, when Alejandro who’s giving Gabriela a hard time for a silly mistake she made says to her “no tenía tantas expectativas, o sea, la amo, pero…“
Carlos: “My hopes weren’t that high, I mean I love her but…”
Natalia: You are loving this lesson.
Carlos: I’m loving it, yes.
Natalia: Oh my God!
Carlos: Next word.
Natalia: “Mente”.
Carlos: “Mente”.
Natalia: This is a feminine and means “mind” or “thoughts.” Think about it, “mente”, “mente”.
Carlos: Hey, makes sense.
Natalia: So in Spanish we can say “tener en mente”, “to have in mind” or that something “se me viene a la mente”, “comes to mind.”
Carlos: In today’s conversation, Gabriela says “tienes la mente cochina”, “you have a dirty mind.”
Natalia: Right, so let’s also note that the expression “tener en mente” it’s a lot like “tener en cuenta”, both indicate that one is aware of something.
Carlos: Thank you.
Natalia: For what?
Carlos: I am now aware of that.
Natalia: Oh God. Carlos, anyways stick around for today’s grammar point, its coming up next.
Carlos: Okay, let’s get down to some grammar. I’m always ready for grammar.

Lesson focus

Natalia: Periphrastic constructions.
Carlos: Spoke to soon. What is a periphrastic construction?
Natalia: A periphrastic construction is simply…
Carlos: Hold on she has to take her ruler out.
Natalia: Yes, like let me get the glasses out. A periphrastic construction is simply one which contains one verb in a personal form and another in an impersonal form.
Carlos: One personal, one impersonal. Check!
Natalia: Okay, so each periphrastic construction has a specific meaning, and these meanings change from context to context.
Carlos: Okay, do you have an example of the context?
Natalia: Well, today for example we are looking at “estar por” and then a verb in the infinitive which is used to express the imminence of the action of the verb in the infinitive form. This nuance is very useful as you continue to develop your ability to express actions in Spanish.
Carlos: Well, do we have a formula?
Natalia: Yes.
Carlos: Let’s have it.
Natalia: So you’ve got a verb plus a preposition plus a verb personal form of “estar” plus “por” plus infinitive form of any verb “estamos” plus “por”, “llegar”. “Estamos por llegar”.
Carlos: “We are about to arrive.”
Natalia: “Estoy por salir, ¿te llamo más tarde?”
Carlos: “I’m about to go out, can I call you later?”
Natalia: “Estábamos por comer cuando llegó mi tío”.
Carlos: “We were about to eat when my uncle arrived.”
Natalia: “Cuando el agua esté por hervir, le echas los huevos”.
Carlos: “When the water is about to boil, add the eggs.”
Natalia: “Estoy por acostarme, hablamos sobre eso mañana”.
Carlos: “I’m about to go to bed let’s talk about that tomorrow.”
Natalia: You see that pattern?
Carlos: Yes, I think it’s pretty clear.
Natalia: So the meaning of this construction usually gets translated to English in the form of to be about to do something. So in Spanish, this same idea can also be expressed with the phrase “a punto de”.
Carlos: And that would mean “to be on the brink”, “to be about to” or “to be on the point of.”
Natalia: So listen the verb “estar” can be conjugated to any number of tenses and in either the indicative or subjunctive mood while still being used in this periphrastic construction. What’s important to remember, is that no matter the tense and mood, the action of the verb in the infinitive is always going to receive a certain amount of imminence.
Carlos: Okay, imminence.
Natalia: You know there’s a lot of periphrastic constructions in Spanish, like for example we use “poder ser” to refer to something that is possible, “tener que” plus an infinitive expresses obligation with respect to the action of the verb in the infinitive. “Debe ser” expresses superstition, “querer decir” is translated as to signify or to mean, “ir a” plus an infinitive expresses a future action someone less distinct than the absolute future.
Carlos: Sounds like a big list.
Natalia: Carlos, this list is not exhaustive and you can build your knowledge on this topic just by checking out other lessons that cover periphrastic constructions.
Carlos: Which you can find links to go to in the grammar bank in the learning center or with a topic like this the grammar bank really is perfect.
Natalia: And the homework assignment is better.
Carlos: That’s true, that’s true.
Natalia: So in today’s grammar point we look at some of the different periphrastic constructions and we learned that these are verbal phrases that contain a verb conjugated to a personal form of a tense in a given mood and an impersonal form also, like an infinitive or a gerund for example.
Carlos: Today’s assignment is an easy one. We are going to give you five sentences in Spanish, each of which contains a periphrastic construction.
Natalia: All you have to do is figure out where the construction is and the person, number, tense and mood are of the verb of the personal form. Número uno, “¿qué es lo que quieres decir?”. Número dos, “teníamos que esperar dos horas”. Número tres, “estábamos por cenar cuando llegaron mis primos”. Número cuatro, “estoy por salir, ¿hablamos después?”. Número cinco, “íbamos a ir pero no nos alcanzó el tiempo”.


Carlos: And remember pod101 world, you can always pick up the questions, answers and comments on the answers by downloading the premium audio track labelled “tarea”, the homework. Naty, that just about does it for today. Okay, we are going to be out for today. ¡Cuídate!
Natalia: ¡Chao!


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