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Lesson Transcript

INTRODUCTION
Fernando: Welcome everyone, this is Beginner series, Season five, Lesson 12. “May I make a suggestion in Spanish?” I am Fernando and as always I am joined by JP. JP, what’s going on man?
JP: Not much, we got a great lesson today at the new spanishpod101.com, where we are studying modern Spanish in a fun and educational format. So whether you are brushing up on Spanish that you started learning long ago or you are starting with us today we are glad that you are here with us for this lesson. So Fernando, why don’t you tell the people what we are going to hear about today?
Fernando: Sure thing, in this lesson, you will learn about suggestions with the word “mejor”. This conversation takes place in a clothing store. The conversation is between Manuel and a sales lady. The speakers will be using the formal register.
JP: So without further adieu, let’s listen to the dialogue Fernando. Fernando, we are back and it looks like Manuel is shopping for jackets.
DIALOGUE
Manuel: ¿Esta chamarra está en oferta?
Vendedora: Atrás están los artículos en descuento.
Manuel: ¿Pero la ropa es de esta temporada?
Vendedora: Algunas piezas sí. Pero mejor vea usted.
Manuel: Is this on sale?
Sales lady: The sale items are in the back.
Manuel: But the clothes are from this season?
Sales lady: Some pieces yes. But you should just look.
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
Fernando: Apparently yes. Comes in asking the sales lady “¿Esta chamarra está en oferta?”
JP: “¿Esta chamarra está en oferta?”. “Chamarra” is the word for jacket and it’s Mexicans who like to use this word “chamarra”, it sounds like a Mexican word to me.
Fernando: Yes. I guess.
JP: Okay. And then “¿Esta chamarra está en oferta?”, “estar en oferta” is a phrase that means “to be on sale.”
Fernando: Exactly.
JP: So how does he ask it again? “Is this jacket on sale?”
Fernando: “¿Esta chamarra está en oferta?”
JP: And the sales lady says “all the sale items are in the back”.
Fernando: “Atrás están los artículos en descuento”.
JP: What’s that first word “atrás”?
Fernando: “Atrás”, “in the back.”
JP: So that little word means three words in English, “in the back”.
Fernando: “In the back”, “atrás”, yes.
JP: “In the back is where the sale items are.” So how do we say “sale items”?
Fernando: “Artículos en descuento”.
JP: “Los artículos en descuento”. “Los artículos” means “the articles” or “the items” and then the word for “on sale”?
Fernando: “Descuento”.
JP: “Descuento”, “discount” and we tie it all together with the verb “estar”. Let’s put this all together. “In the back are the items that are on sale.”
Fernando: “Atrás están los artículos en descuento”.
JP: Now Manuel wants to check to make sure he’s not getting the clearance rack.
Fernando: “¿Pero la ropa es de esta temporada?”
JP: “But the clothes are from this season?” Now how do we say “this season”?
Fernando: “Esta temporada”.
JP: “Esta temporada”. Which is the word for “season”?
Fernando: “Temporada”.
JP: “Temporada”. “Esta temporada” would be “this season.” He asks “the clothing or the clothes are from this season?” How do we say “the clothes”?
Fernando: “La ropa”.
JP: “La ropa”, we are going to talk about this in the vocabulary section. “La ropa” is singular in Spanish “la ropa”. In English we say it’s “the clothing” or “the clothes”, plural. In Spanish it’s singular, “la ropa”. “But the clothes are from this season?”
Fernando: “¿Pero la ropa es de esta temporada?”
JP: And then the sales lady says, “some pieces yes”.
Fernando: “Algunas piezas sí”.
JP: What’s that word for “pieces”?
Fernando: “Piezas”.
JP: “Piezas”. And “some pieces”?
Fernando: “Algunas”.
JP: “Algunas piezas”. And then she said “just go look yourself”.
Fernando: “Pero mejor vea usted”.
JP: “Pero mejor vea usted”. Here we have a “mandato”, right? We have “a command.” She says “go look” with the verb “ver”. How does she tell him “you look”?
Fernando: “Vea usted”.
JP: And then finally now is that right before that we have the word “mejor”, which usually means “better” and in-fact you can translate it in a number of ways. I translated it as “just look yourself.” So let’s put it together, “But you better look yourself.”
Fernando: “Pero mejor vea usted”.
JP: “Pero mejor vea usted”. Muy bien. Should we move to the vocabulary section?
VOCAB LIST
Fernando: Yes. “La chamarra”.
JP: “Jacket.”
Fernando: “La cha-ma-rra”, “la chamarra”. “Estar en oferta”.
JP: “To be on sale.”
Fernando: “Es-tar en o-fer-ta”, “estar en oferta”. “La ropa”.
JP: “Clothes”, “clothing”, “laundry.”
Fernando: “La ro-pa”, “la ropa”. “La temporada”.
JP: “Season.”
Fernando: “La tem-po-ra-da”, “la temporada”. “Mejor”.
JP: “Better”, “best.”
Fernando: “Me-jor”, “mejor”.
VOCAB AND PHRASE USAGE
JP: Alright, we are back Fernando. What are we going to talk about now?
Fernando: Let’s start with the word “chamarra”.
JP: “Chamarra”. Okay, this is…
Fernando: “La chamarra”.
JP: “La chamarra”, and this is the word for “jacket”?
Fernando: Yes.
JP: Okay. Now for me this is a Mexican word.
Fernando: It is used in Mexico, it’s used in other parts of Spanish speaking America or in the Spanish speaking world.
JP: Now usually when I go to places that are not Mexico I usually say “la chaqueta” but for Mexico I say “chamarra”.
Fernando: That’s perfectly fine.
JP: Okay, alright what’s next?
Fernando: “Estar en oferta”.
JP: “Estar en oferta”, “to be on sale.” Now we have that verb “estar” which is our verb for “to be” and then “en oferta” is the phrase that means “on sale”.
Fernando: Yes, not to be confused with “venta” because everything is on sale, “venta” is the same as “sale”, but “oferta” is “on sale.”
JP: I get what you are saying, so “la oferta” is “to be discounted” and “estar a la venta” would be “to be for sale”.
Fernando: Yes.
JP: Then what do we use today?
Fernando: “Estar en oferta”.
JP: “Estar en oferta”. What’s next?
Fernando: “La ropa”.
JP: “La ropa”, this is the word for “clothes” and I mentioned before in the dialogue that “la ropa” is singular in Spanish, in English it’s plural, “clothes.”
Fernando: Yes, it sounds so beach on the pacific coast of Mexico.
JP: Okay.
Fernando: Yes.
JP: Alright, what else?
Fernando: “La temporada”.
JP: “La temporada”, this is “the season.”
Fernando: Yes.
JP: So the four seasons: spring, summer, fall and winter.
Fernando: That would be the four seasons.
JP: Thank you, Fernando.
Fernando: “Las cuatro temporadas”.
JP: Are there any other ways to use this word?
Fernando: Yes, you can use it for crops, harvesting, obviously you know fashion “es la temporada de invierno o verano” or “invierno o primavera”.
JP: And what’s the last one?
Fernando: “Mejor”.
JP: Now this usually means “better” or “best”, alright? But we are going to talk about it in the grammar that it might mean something else and you might use it, we might translate it in a different way.
Fernando: I think we will have to actually.
JP: Okay, “mejor”. Let’s move to the grammar. Alright, this word “mejor” is a comparative word and it’s often introduced as the irregular comparative of “bueno” or “bien” with the reason you’d say an irregular comparative is because if you want to say something is “tall”, you’d say…

Lesson focus

Fernando: “Alto”.
JP: And if you want to say it’s “more tall” or “taller”?
Fernando: “Más alto”.
JP: “Más alto”. But if you say something is “good”...
Fernando: “Bueno”.
JP: “Bueno”, you don’t say “más bueno”.
Fernando: Never.
JP: Never. You say “mejor”. The same thing with the adverb “bien”. Now you can use “más” with the adverbs if you want to say something is “faster.”
Fernando: “Rápido”.
JP: “Más rápido”.
Fernando: “Más rápido”.
JP: But if you want to say something is “bien”, you don’t say “más bien”.
Fernando: You don’t say “más bien”.
JP: No, you say “mejor”.
Fernando: “Mejor”.
JP: So this is what we mean when we say “mejor” is used for comparison. The way we used it in the dialogue today is a little bit different. But Fernando can you tell us how the sales lady used it?
Fernando: Sure thing, “pero mejor vea usted”.
JP: “Pero mejor vea usted”, so we could translate it as “but you better look.” But the way it comes across in English is more like a suggestion, okay? “Just go look yourself”, “just have a look.” It’s a suggestion.
Fernando: “It would be best if you took a look.” That’s using a lot more words than necessary, but yes, that’s what it means.
JP: There are some cases when we use “mejor” not as a comparative but as a suggestion. For example, if people are sitting on the couch and you hear the doorbell and nobody wants to get up, somebody is bound to say “I’ll just go”.
Fernando: “Mejor voy yo”.
JP: “Mejor voy yo”, so there it’s kind of a suggestion for the group. “Well I’ll just go”, “I’ll just do it”. Here’s another way you can use “mejor”, if I’m worried about quitting smoking and I decide that today is the day I’ll say “it’s better if I don’t smoke today”, “I’ll just not smoke today.”
Fernando: “Es mejor si no fumo hoy”.
JP: Or you can say “mejor no fumo hoy”, in that case it would be like, “maybe I won’t smoke today”. Let’s see if we have another example here.
Fernando: “¿Y si mejor terminamos?”
JP: “So what if we end it?” You know, I think that’s a great suggestion, Fernando. Oh and it’s an example!
Fernando: I was using it as an example.
JP: “¿Y si mejor terminamos?”
Fernando: Well, that’s a good suggestion, JP. I never thought you’d say that.
JP: Alright, so there “mejor” is being used as an adverb, but the sentence on the whole is a suggestion and I think it’s a good one. So folks, if you want to take a look at my grammatical explanation of the word “mejor” being used as a suggestion particle, please go to the website which is www.spanishpod101.com find the grammar section of this lesson.

Outro

Fernando: And we also want to know what you are thinking and how you feel about this lesson. Therefore, please leave us a comment, suggestion or question regarding this lesson and how it’s improved your Spanish. JP, I think it’s time to go.
JP: Good idea. ¡Hasta luego!
Fernando: Adiós.

Grammar

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27 Comments

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SpanishPod101.com
Monday at 6:30 pm
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Me gusta la lección porque es fácil, pero útil ( ejemplo - mejor).

SpanishPod101.com
Tuesday at 11:46 am
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Hola John L,


Thank you for your comment.

Well, this will depend on the context you use them.

Remember the subjunctive mood is used to talk about desires, doubts, wishes, conjectures, and possibilities.

Sigamos practicando.


Saludos,

Carla

Team SpanishPod101.com

John L
Tuesday at 2:47 am
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I'm unclear about one thing.

In the examples "Es mejor si no fumo hoy” and "¿Y si mejor terminamos?” why is the subjunctive not used? These seem like they're proposing possibilities rather than certainties. I often struggle with using subjunctive at the right times.

Thank you for clarifying!

SpanishPod101.com
Sunday at 7:52 pm
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Hi there,


Thanks for the thumbs-up!👍


Should you have any questions, please let us know.


Saludos,

Cristiane

Team SpanishPod101.com

Someone
Tuesday at 8:23 am
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👍👍

SpanishPod101.comVerified
Saturday at 1:20 am
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Hola Lynette,


Thank you for your positive feedback!


In case of any questions, please feel free to contact us.


Saludos,

Cristiane

Team SpanishPod101.com

Lynette Lickley
Friday at 5:49 am
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The vocabulary was long and detailed. The grammar was the same too. Great lesson, keep up the good work.

SpanishPod101.comVerified
Tuesday at 1:46 pm
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Hola Saanika,


Thank you for your comment.

We're happy to know you're enjoying the lesson.

Please let us know if you have any question.


Saludos,

Carla

Team SpanishPod101.com

SpanishPod101.comVerified
Tuesday at 1:46 pm
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Hola Karen,


Thank you for your suggestion, we will consider this for future lessons.

Please let us know if you have any question.


Saludos,

Carla

Team SpanishPod101.com

Saanika
Wednesday at 1:58 pm
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muchas gracias!?

Karen Moneymaker
Thursday at 2:05 pm
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I'm good until I reach the grammer sections. It would be better if the pod casts were using the same grammar examples as the website.