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Lesson Transcript

Lizy: ¡Hola, soy Lizy!
Alan: Alan here. Newbie series, season 1, Lesson 40. “If you want to flatter me, I am not opposed.” Hello and welcome to the newbie series, season 1 at spanishpod101.com where we study modern Spanish in a fun, educational format.
Lizy: So brush up on the Spanish that you started learning long ago or start learning today.
Alan: Thanks for being here with us for this lesson. Lizy, what are we looking at today?
Lizy: In this final lesson of the first season of the newbie series, you will learn where you should be by now in your studies.
Alan: Today’s conversation takes place in a cafe here in Lima.
Lizy: Mariela runs into Andrés who has been studying Spanish for a little while now.
Alan: Since these guys are friends, they are going to be speaking to each other informally. Let’s listen to the conversation.
MARIELA: Andrés, ¿cómo te va en los estudios?
ANDRÉS: No tan mal como antes. Poco a poco me estoy soltando.
MARIELA: ¡Imáginate que hace poco con las justas podías saludar!
ANDRÉS: Con paciencia y perseverancia, como decía mi abuelo.
MARIELA: Dentro de poco hablarás mejor que yo.
ANDRÉS: Jeje... no lo creo, pero si quieres halagarme, no me opongo.
MARIELA: Andrés, how are your studies goin'?
ANDRÉS: Not as bad as before. Little by little I'm loosening up.
MARIELA: Imagine that not too long ago you could barely say hello!
ANDRÉS: With patience and perseverance, like my grandpa used to say.
MARIELA: Pretty soon, you'll be speakin' better than I do.
ANDRÉS: Hehe... I don't believe it, but if you wanna flatter me, I'm not opposed.
Lizy: Alan, me imagino que escuchas algo parecido cuando los estudiantes de tu escuela terminan un ciclo, ¿no es verdad?
Alan: Así es, Lizy. Bueno, ellos siempre dicen que aprenden poco a poco. Pero sí aprenden. Yeah, consider it guys. If you want to add an immersion element to your Spanish studies, come see us at “El Sol”, Spanish Language School in Lima, Perú. It’s a great place to learn Spanish. You are surrounded by a wonderful city, very interesting, very exciting and the academic program is very, very solid. So that’s “El Sol” in Lima, Perú.
Lizy: El mejor lugar para aprender español.
Alan: ¡Así es! Now is the 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. Listen closely. Today’s first word is an adverb.
Lizy: “Tan”.
Alan: “So”, “such”, “as.”
Lizy: “Tan”, “tan”.
Alan: Which we see in the example...
Lizy: “Esa chica es tan inteligente”.
Alan: “That girl is so smart.” Next we will look at an adverbial locution of time.
Lizy: “Poco a poco”.
Alan: “Little by little.”
Lizy: “Po-co a po-co”, “poco a poco”.
Alan: And to contextualize this, we have the sample sentence...
Lizy: “Poco a poco te acostumbrarás.”
Alan: “Little by little, you will get used to it”. And now a verb.
Lizy: “Soltar”.
Alan: “To loosen up”, “to let go.”
Lizy: “Sol-tar”, “soltar”.
Alan: And the sample sentence is...
Lizy: “Después de estudiar por cinco meses me solté y empecé a hablar”.
Alan: “After studying for five months, I loosened up and began to speak”. This time, we have a set phrase.
Lizy: “Con las justas”.
Alan: “Barely”, “by the skin of one’s teeth.”
Lizy: “Con las jus-tas”, “con las justas”.
Alan: And an example of this would be...
Lizy: “Llegué al paradero con la justas. Veinte segundos después pasó el micro.”
Alan: “I arrived at the bus stop by the skin of my teeth, 20 seconds later, the bus passed.” Next up a verb.
Lizy: “Saludar”.
Alan: “To say hello”, “to send one’s regards.”
Lizy: “Sa-lu-dar”, “saludar”.
Alan: And to put this into context, we have the example...
Lizy: “Salúdale a tu hermano de mi parte”.
Alan: “Say hello to your brother for me.” And finally we have a feminine noun.
Lizy: “Perseverancia”.
Alan: “Perseverance.”
Lizy: “Per-se-ve-ran-cia”, “perseverancia”.
Alan: And the last sample sentence is...
Lizy: “Con un poco de perseverancia se logra mucho”.
Alan: “A lot is achieved with a little perseverance.”
Lizy: Time for a quick pronunciation tip.
Alan: Okay, how about this last word, “perseverancia”?
Lizy: “Perseverancia”.
Alan: Notice where the accent falls, “perseverancia”. It’s on the second to last syllable.
Lizy: “Perseverancia”.
Alan: Okay. Let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Lizy: Okay.
Alan: Our first phrase is a very common and easy one.
Lizy: “Poco a poco”.
Alan: “Poco a poco”.
Lizy: If you know that “poco” means “little”, then you already know that “poco a poco” means “little by little.”
Alan: Or “step by step.” Lizy, where did we hear this in our conversation?
Lizy: In today’s lesson conversation, we heard Andres say “poco a poco me estoy soltando”.
Alan: “Little by little, I am loosening up.” Now what does “soltando” mean?
Lizy: We will have to move on to the next word.
Alan: “Soltando” is nothing more and nothing less than the gerund form of the verb “soltar”.
Lizy: Which means “to loosen up” or “to let go.”
Alan: So “poco a poco me estoy soltando”, “little by little, I am loosening up.” When does it mean “to let go”?
Lizy: For example, if you have me by the hand and I am hanging off a cliff, I might say “¡no me sueltes!”, “don’t let go off me!”
Alan: It’s quite the vivid example there, Lizy, but I think it makes it very clear for our audience. Any other words to learn with this one?
Lizy: How about the adjective “suelto” and “suelta” as in “la camisa me queda muy suelta”?
Alan: Next up is a cool phrase, “con las justas”.
Lizy: “Con las justas”.
Alan: In today’s conversation, Mariela – admiring the progress of her friend, Mariela says to Andrés “¡Imagínate que hace poco con las justas podías saludar!”. “Imagine that not too long ago, you could barely say hello.”
Lizy: The cool thing about this phrase is that it can mean either “barely” or “by the skin of one’s teeth.”
Alan: For example...
Lizy: “Llegué a la reunión con las justas. Ya estaba por comenzar”.
Alan: “I arrived at the meeting by the skin of my teeth. It was about to begin.” Well, we’ve all been there, haven’t we?
Lizy: Next up, “saludar”.
Alan: “Saludar”. This is like “saludos”, right?
Lizy: Kind of “saludar” means “to say hello” or “to send someone regards.” Again, “¡Imáginate que hace poco con las justas podías saludar!”
Alan: “Imagine that not too long ago, you could barely say hello.”
Lizy: So if I say “salúdale a tu hermana” I mean “say hello to your sister.”
Alan: “Perseverance.”
Lizy: “Perseverancia”. Last word, a good word, a word to live by. “Perseverancia”, a feminine noun.
Alan: And where did we hear it in today’s conversation?
Lizy: In today’s lesson conversation, we heard “con paciencia y perseverancia, como decía mi abuelo”. “With patience and perseverance like my grandpa used to say.”
Alan: Any other words to learn along with this one?
Lizy: How about a verb “perseverar”. If “la perseverancia” is “perseverance”, then what would you suppose the verb “perseverar” means?
Alan: “To persevere.” Now that wasn’t so hard, was it? All right guys, stick around for today’s grammar point coming up next. In today’s grammar point, we are going to deal with comparisons of equality.

Lesson focus

Lizy: Okay, don’t you use the word “as” to do that in English?
Alan: Yep, like this lesson is as interesting as the last one. What about in Spanish?
Lizy: In Spanish, there is a simple formula that we used to construct the same kinds of comparisons of equality.
Alan: Formulas are always good.
Lizy: Time plus adjective or adverb plus “como”.
Alan: Okay, let’s look at positive comparisons of equality. How about an example, Liz?
Lizy: “Manejas tan lento como mi abuela”.
Alan: “You drive as slowly as my grandma does.”
Lizy: “La comida aquí es tan rica como la comida que mi madre prepara”.
Alan: “The food here is as delicious as the food that my mother prepares.”
Lizy: “Habla tan rápido como un papagayo.”
Alan: “He speaks as fast as a parrot.” I think that’s clear and we noticed the formula being used. Let’s try negative comparisons of equality.
Lizy: “Esta película no es tan interesante como la que vimos anoche”.
Alan: “This movie isn’t as interesting as the one we saw last night.”
Lizy: “La tarea de hoy no es tan difícil como la de ayer”.
Alan: “Today’s homework is not as difficult as yesterday’s.”
Lizy: “Angela no es tan alta como María.”
Alan: “Angela is not as tall as María.” Good, we can make positive statements that indicate the equality between two or more things.
Lizy: Right. We can also use the same structure while adding the word “no” to show that one thing is not equal to another.
Alan: And in either case, the construction “tan” plus adjective or adverb plus “como” remains intact.
Lizy: That’s why formulas always help with learning.
Alan: Completely. They serve as a very solid foundation. Okay, time for your “tarea”, your homework assignment.
Lizy: ¿Todos preparados?
Alan: So in today’s grammar point, we studied comparisons of equality using “tan” and then either an adjective or adverb followed by “como”. Now we are going to give you five sets of sentences in Spanish. What you have to do is form a comparison of equality out of them. For example, if the set of sentences is “Martín come rápido” and “Susana come rápido” then the answer would be “Martín come tan rápido como Susana”. Ready?
Lizy: Número 1, “El café peruano es rico, el café colombiano es rico también”. Número 2, “Mariela es bella, Gracia también es bella”. Número 3, “Caminas lento, yo también camino lento”. Número 4, “Sois inteligentes. Somos inteligentes también”. Número 5, “Llegas tarde a la fiesta. Llegué tarde a la fiesta también”.


Alan: And remember you overachievers out there, you can always check out the answers and the comments on the answers by downloading the premium audio track at “tarea”, homework. So that’s it guys. Another lesson has come to an end. Que les vaya bien, ¡chao!
Lizy: ¡Ya nos vemos, amigos!


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