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Lesson Transcript

Lizy: ¡Hola todos!
Alan: Alan here. “Better to cut your losses.”
Lizy: Today we are going to learn about how to use verbs together in a single expression of action. The conversation picks up with Martín and his friend Jose Luis.
Alan: They are on their way to Western Union so that Martín can pick up the transfer his sisters wired him.
Lizy: Since these guys are buddies, the conversation is informal and today in particular kind of slangy. Listeners, I have a question.
Alan: A question?
Lizy: Yep. I want to know when was the last time you commented.
Alan: Ah yeah, great question, Liz.
Lizy: Stop by spanishpod101.com, leave us a comment or just say “hi!”
Alan: Okay guys, you heard Lizy. Now listen to her, trust me on that one.
Lizy: Okay, I think it’s time.
Alan: That’s right. Let’s listen to the conversation.
JOSÉ LUIS: Hola, Martín. ¿Qué dices?
MARTÍN: Todo sigue igual.Vámonos. ¡Me raya este pendejo!
JOSÉ LUIS: Tranquilo no más. Mira, ese tipo no va a cambiar de idea. Así es la burocracia aquí.
MARTÍN: Tienes razón. Mejor cortar por lo sano.
JOSÉ LUIS: Oye, cuando terminemos, te invito unas cervezas.
MARTÏN: Muy temprano para mí, Pepe.
JOSÉ LUIS: Entonces, ¡tendríamos que almorzar primero!
MARTÍN: Jeje... Bueno, no me opongo. Gracias de nuevo.
JOSÉ LUIS: Hey, Martín. What's up?
MARTÍN: Nothing has changed. Let's go. I can't stand this wise guy!
JOSÉ LUIS: Cool down, man. Look, that guy is never gonna' change his mind. That's how bureaucracy is here.
MARTÍN: You're right. Better to cut your losses.
JOSÉ LUIS: Hey, when we're done, let me buy you a beer.
MARTÏN: A little too early for me, Pepe.
JOSÉ LUIS: Then we'll just have to have lunch first.
MARTÍN: Haha... Well, I won't oppose. Thanks again.
Lizy: Sounds like a pretty good friend.
Alan: I’d say so. Lizy, here Martín refers to José as Pepe which is something like a nick name. What are some other nicknames in Spanish?
Lizy: Well, Francisco, Paco, Alberto, Beto, María del Pilar, Mapi, Maria Luisa, Malú, and so on.
Alan: That’s right. They are not really nicknames. They are like alternate versions of names.
Lizy: Yes.
Alan: It’s not that diminutive like from Francisco, you don’t go to Paco by reducing the size of it. It’s just an alternate version and it is very, very common at least here in Perú.
Lizy: Yes.
Alan: Okay, now is a time to move on to the vocabulary section of today’s lesson guide. Here we are going to break these words down and give you some key points. So listen closely. Today’s first word is a verb.
Lizy: “Rayar”.
Alan: “To underline”, “to scratch”, “to border on” or “to drive crazy.”
Lizy: “Ra-yar”, “rayar”.
Alan: And to put this in context, we have the example...
Lizy: “Lo que me raya es que nunca llegas a tiempo”.
Alan: “What drives me crazy is that you never show up on time.” Next up, we have a masculine noun.
Lizy: “Pendejo”.
Alan: “Wise guy.”
Lizy: “Pen-de-jo”, “pendejo”.
Alan: And the sample sentence is...
Lizy: “No deberías mezclarte con ese pendejo.”
Alan: “You shouldn’t get mixed up with that wise guy.” Now this time we have the feminine noun.
Lizy: “Burocracia”.
Alan: “Bureaucracy.”
Lizy: “Bu-ro-cra-cia”, “burocracia”.
Alan: And an example of this would be...
Lizy: “No tengo paciencia para ese tipo de burocracia”.
Alan: “I don’t have the patience for that kind of bureaucracy.” And now, the verbal phrase...
Lizy: “Cortar por lo sano”.
Alan: “To cut one’s losses.”
Lizy: “Cor-tar por lo sa-no”, “cortar por lo sano”.
Alan: And to contextualize this one, we have the example...
Lizy: “No te enfurezcas, mejor es cortar por lo sano”.
Alan: “Don’t get infuriated, it’s better to cut your losses.” Okay, moving on, we have a feminine noun.
Lizy: “Cerveza”.
Alan: “Beer.”
Lizy: “Cer-ve-za”, “cerveza”.
Alan: And the sample sentence is...
Lizy: “¡Tomemos un par de cervezas!”
Alan: “Let’s have a couple of beers.” And finally, we will look at a verb.
Lizy: “Oponer”.
Alan: “To oppose.”
Lizy: “O-po-ner”, “oponer”.
Alan: And the last example is...
Lizy: “Si tú quieres salir a comer, no me opongo”.
Alan: “If you want to go to eat, I don’t oppose.”
Lizy: Time for today’s pronunciation tip.
Alan: How about the word for “beer”?
Lizy: Sure. So here in Latin America, we tend to pronounce the zeta like the “S”, so we say “cervesa” but in Spain, this zeta is pronounced like a “th”. So they would say “cervetha”.
Alan: Right. So “cervesa” in Latin America and “cervetha” in Spain.
Lizy: Let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Alan: I like this first word.
Lizy: “Rayar”.
Alan: Yep, “rayar”. This verb has a lot of meanings, doesn’t it?
Lizy: Oh, yeah.
Alan: How many?
Lizy: A lot.
Alan: How about some examples?
Lizy: For example, “me rayaron el auto”.
Alan: “Someone scratched my car.”
Lizy: Or… “¿pero por qué rayaste el mejor párrafo?”
Alan: “But why have you crossed out the best paragraph?” [inaudible 00:04:44] it means scratch or to cross out.
Lizy: Yes.
Alan: Is that all?
Lizy: No.
Alan: [inaudible 00:04:51]
Lizy: It also means to infuriate, to make someones mad.
Alan: I am going to like this next example.
Lizy: “Me raya ese pendejo”.
Alan: “That wise guy infuriates me” or “I can’t stand that wise guy.” “Wise guy”, “pendejo”.
Lizy: Yep, “pendejo”.
Alan: This masculine noun is used here in Perú to refer to someone who is streetwise and how should I say opportunistic, “astutos”.
Lizy: It’s strange because in other places in the Spanish speaking world, “pendejo” is used to refer to “cobarde”, “a coward.”
Alan: That’s right. I’d just like to mention though in Perú, this is very, very informal language, not to be used in polite company but it’s a common word. Hey guys, if you are familiar with this word before today’s podcast, let us know what it means in your neck of the woods.
Lizy: Now some would say the next word is related to the following.
Alan: “Burocracia”. Hah, makes sense.
Lizy: “Burocracia”.
Alan: This is a feminine noun that no one really likes.
Lizy: No one?
Alan: Well, I guess the bureaucrats like it I guess. So what is it?
Lizy: “Burocracia”, “bureaucracy.”
Alan: As we said before, remember where the stress falls here on the second to last syllable.
Lizy: “Burocracia”.
Alan: Where did we hear this in today’s conversation?
Lizy: “Así es la burocracia aquí”.
Alan: “That’s how bureaucracy is here.” I don’t want to talk about it. Let’s move on to a verb phrase.
Lizy: “Cortar por lo sano”.
Alan: “Cortar por lo sano”. “Let’s break this down.” “Cortar” means...
Lizy: “To cut.”
Alan: And then “por lo sano”, a preposition, a neutral article and the adjective “lo sano”, “healthy.” When we use these words together, what do we mean exactly, Lizy?
Lizy: We mean to discontinue an action in order to minimize your losses.
Alan: You know, I think I saw it somewhere translated as [inaudible 00:06:30] as in what tied Gordian’s lands to the yolk. You know that ancient king in Phrygia which is said to have been made with such dexterity that none of its cables could be discovered.
Lizy: Thanks for the trivia.
Alan: You are right. Yeah, everyone likes trivia but you know what I like more than trivia?
Lizy: What?
Alan: Grammar.
Lizy: Yeah.

Lesson focus

Alan: Which is up next. So stick around. Let’s look at how to express future actions using “la perífrasis”.
Lizy: “La perífrasis”?
Alan: Yep. That’s a unit made up of one verb in a personal form and another in an impersonal form.
Lizy: And what tense does that often take place in?
Alan: Absolute future.
Lizy: Right.
Alan: Here we conjugate the personal verb “ir”, “to go”, and then we add the preposition “a” and the infinitive of the future action to be carried out.
Lizy: Okay, but unlike the absolute future tense which expresses a definite statement that we will do something, here we are expressing “el futuro de intención”, “the future of intention.”
Alan: Right, which shows our intention to carry out an action with less absolute certainty. How do we form this?
Lizy: In order to build this structure, we need to know the conjugation of the verb “ir”, “to go”, in the imperfect past tense, the present tense and the future tense.
Alan: All of these tenses?
Lizy: Yep.
Alan: Okay, then let’s check that out.
Lizy: “Ir” which will be the personal verb plus “a” plus infinitive which will be the impersonal verb.
Alan: So which verb the personal or impersonal will be in either the present, past imperfect or future tense?
Lizy: The personal verb. Since the impersonal is infinitive, it’s not conjugated.
Alan: Okay, so now that we have the form down, what about some sample sentences?
Lizy: Okay, let’s start with present tense.
Alan: Sure.
Lizy: “Voy a caminar en el parque”.
Alan: “I am going to walk in the park.”
Lizy: “Vas a hacer tu tarea”.
Alan: “You are going to do your homework.”
Lizy: Now let’s contrast these to the absolute future.
Alan: Okay.
Lizy: “Iré a caminar en el parque”.
Alan: “I will go to walk in the park.”
Lizy: “Irás a hacer tu tarea”.
Alan: “You will go to do your homework.”
Lizy: Notice the difference. With the absolute future, we are expressing future intention.
Alan: Let’s check out the difference between the present tense and the imperfect past tense of “ir”, “to go.”
Lizy: “Yo voy a trabajar”.
Alan: “I am going to work.”
Lizy: “Yo iba a trabajar”.
Alan: “I was going to work.”
Lizy: “Tú vas a venir”.
Alan: “You are going to come.”
Lizy: “Tú ibas a venir".
Alan: “You are going to come.”
Lizy: “Ella va a dormir”.
Alan: “She is going to sleep.”
Lizy: “Ella iba dormir”.
Alan: “She was going to sleep.”
Lizy: “Nosotros vamos a jugar”.
Alan: “We are going to play.”
Lizy: “Nosotros íbamos a jugar”.
Alan: “We were going to play.”
Lizy: Alan, why don’t we explain why “ir” is referred to as a personal verb?
Alan: Okay, “ir” is referred to as a personal verb in this case because we are conjugating it to show who is going to carry out the impersonal action, the attached infinitive.
Lizy: Exactly. There are two reasons why this periphrastic construction is so important to learn.
Alan: A little extra work but every bit worth it.
Lizy: There are many different kinds of periphrastic constructions in Spanish. For example, we can say “estoy por llegar” which means “I am about to arrive” or “este concepto puede ser difícil”.
Alan: “This concept can be difficult.” Hey, but like anything else, it comes with time and practice.
Lizy: Practice is the most important aspect.
Alan: Real world usage is vital.
Lizy: Time for the “tarea”.
Alan: That’s right, it’s homework time. So in today’s grammar point, we learned how to use the verb “ir”, then the preposition “a” and a verb in the infinitive to express a future action and we also learned how to do this in the preterit imperfect, present and future tenses. Okay, now we are going to give you five sentences in Spanish. Each will contain one of these constructions. What you have to do is identify the verb in the personal form and then figure out what the tense, person and number is. Ready?
Lizy: Número 1, “íbamos a llamarte”. Número 2, “irás a estudiar ahora mismo”. Número 3, “váis a disfrutar la fiesta”. Número 4, “iban a acompañarnos”. Número 5, “te va a gustar la comida”.


Alan: And remember brainiacs, you can always check out the answers and the comments on the answers by downloading the premium audio track titled “tarea,” homework. That just about does it for today. Entonces, ¡hasta luego, amigos! ¡que les vaya bien!
Lizy: ¡Y no se pierdan!


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