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Lesson Transcript

Bienvenidos a Spanishpod101.com!
Dylan: Hola, hola a todos, es Dylan, ¿cómo están?
Carlos: What’s going on pod101 world? My name is Carlos. Newbie series, season 3, Lesson #11. “Spanish prepositions. I am not going to pay you for carelessness.” Hey, what’s going on everybody? Welcome to the newbie series, season 3 at spanishpod101.com where we study modern Spanish in a fun and educational format.
Dylan: So brush up on the Spanish that you started learning long ago or start learning today.
Carlos: Thanks for being here with us for this lesson. In this lesson, you will learn about the preposition “a”.
Dylan: That’s right. Those little words can be confusing.
Carlos: Definitely but learning prepositions is extremely important.
Dylan: Who are we with today?
Carlos: Well, we are still with Sofía and Gabriel and it looks like they have hired a mower.
Dylan: How are they doing?
Carlos: Not very good apparently.
Dylan: So it’s informal.
Carlos: I would think so. Guys, don’t forget to leave us a comment on the lesson.
Dylan: So if you have a question...
Carlos: Or some feedback...
Dylan: Please leave us a comment.
Carlos: It’s very easy to do. Just stop by spanishpod101.com
Dylan: Click on comments, enter your comment and your name and that’s it.
Carlos: We are looking forward to hearing from you. All right, let’s listen to today’s conversation.
SOFIA: Disculpe, ¿podría tratar eso con más cuidado?
TRABAJADOR: Señora, a mí me pagan por horas.
SOFIA: Pues no le voy a pagar todo si no es más cuidadoso.
SOFIA: Gabriel, ¿de dónde los sacaste? Si se quiebra algo, ¡la culpa será tuya!
GABRIEL: ¿Mía? todo yo... todo yo...
SOFIA: Excuse me, could you treat that more carefully?
TRABAJADOR: Ma'am, I get paid by the hour.
SOFIA: Well, I'm not going to pay you everything if you're not more careful.
TRABAJADOR: Yeah, yeah...
SOFIA: Gabriel, where did you get them? If something breaks, it will be your fault!
GABRIEL: Mine? Everything's my fault...everything's my fault...
Dylan: Wow!
Carlos: That relation is kind of normal, wasn’t it?
Dylan: Yeah, that’s like I’ve been there before.
Carlos: Have you?
Dylan: Yeah, all the time, every day.
Carlos: Oh, it’s your fault?
Dylan: Yeah, everyday and it’s always you know somebody else’s fault, it’s never mine.
Carlos: Well, my grandpa, they always used to say, the key to a lasting marriage is one phrase.
Dylan: And that is...
Carlos: “Sí, mi amor”.
Dylan: I love your grandpa.
Carlos: His marriage is the day he died.
Dylan: Nice.
Carlos: Hey you know, marriage is a own deal I wouldn’t know but I hear like that. So I guess people want to just live longer and just nod and smile and say “sí, mi amor”.
Dylan: “Sí, mi amor”.
Carlos: So you got to say guys, listen, the latina just smile and nod and say...
Dylan: “Sí, mi amor”.
Carlos: That’s the most valuable thing you learn in this lesson right now.
Dylan: There we go.
Carlos: All right. Let’s take a closer look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
Dylan: “Disculpe”.
Carlos: “Excuse me.”
Dylan: “Dis-cul-pe”, “disculpe”.
Dylan: “Tratar”.
Carlos: “To try”, “to treat.”
Dylan: “Tra-tar”, “tratar”.
Dylan: “Cuidado”.
Carlos: “Care”, “carefulness”, “watch out”, “lookout.”
Dylan: “Cui-da-do”, “cuidado”.
Dylan: “Pagar”.
Carlos: “To pay.”
Dylan: “Pa-gar”, “pagar”.
Dylan: “Quiebra”.
Carlos: “Break”, “crack”, “failure”, “loss”, “gorge.”
Dylan: “Quie-bra”, “quiebra”.
Dylan: “Culpa”.
Carlos: “Guilt”, “blame”, “fault.”
Dylan: “Cul-pa”, “culpa”.
Carlos: Okay, let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Dylan: The first word we will look at is “disculpa”.
Carlos: Yes, sorry.
Dylan: No, I am not saying that to you. It’s our first word.
Carlos: Right. “Disculpa”, “excuse me”, from the verb...
Dylan: “Disculpar”. “To excuse.”
Carlos: Okay, now here is how Sofía used it in today’s conversation...
Dylan: “Disculpa, ¿podrías tratar eso con más cuidado?”
Carlos: “Excuse me, could you treat that more carefully?” Now there are other ways to say “excuse me.” Now Dylan, how do we know the difference? I mean I know I say “perdón” quite a bit.
Dylan: Well, “perdón” is said when you want to pass through. So if people are standing on the street in your way, you want to say “perdón” as a polite way to ask them to pass.
Carlos: Well, and if I say “Disculpa”?
Dylan: Well, that means that you want to talk to them like you might say “Disculpe, ¿me puede decir qué hora es?”
Carlos: “Excuse me, can I ask what time is it?”
Dylan: Exactly. Got the difference?
Carlos: I think so.
Dylan: Nice, moving on. The next word is a verb, “tratar”.
Carlos: “Tratar”. “To try”, “to treat.” Not really a cognate but you know for some reason, I feel it’s easy to remember.
Dylan: Yeah, this is one of those words that clicks once and boom, there you are. We have it as “to try” or “to treat.” Which way do we see it being used here?
Carlos: Well, we heard it in our first example “Disculpa, ¿podrías tratar eso con más cuidado?”, “excuse me, could you treat that more carefully?” So here “tratar” is being used “to treat.”
Dylan: Exactly. How about a sentence where it’s being used “to try”?
Carlos: Hah, when someone is trying to rush me on a task and I say “estoy tratando”, “I am trying.”
Dylan: Good one. You know with a related word, you could also use the verb “intentar” which also means “to try.”
Carlos: So I could say “estoy intentando”.
Dylan: “Intentando”.
Carlos: “Estoy intentando”.
Dylan: “Intentando”.
Carlos: “Estoy intentando”.
Dylan: You are “intentando”.
Carlos: “I am trying”, “estoy intentando”, and it would mean the same as “estoy tratando”.
Dylan: Yeah.
Carlos: Nice. I learned two words today.
Dylan: Well, there is actually a more obvious noun.
Carlos: And what’s that?
Dylan: “El trato”.
Carlos: And what does that mean?
Dylan: “The treatment.”
Carlos: Huh, next up.
Dylan: “Cuidado”.
Carlos: You know I’ve heard this word my entire life but you know how I thought it sounded to me.
Dylan: How?
Carlos: “Cuidado” Carlos, “cuidado”.
Dylan: So you had trouble spelling it hah!
Carlos: Oh yeah, you better believe it. I mean the thing is I say “demasiado”, “too much”, the same way. It comes out jumbled in my mouth, “demasiado”.
Dylan: Well, listen carefully to this pronunciation “Disculpa, ¿podrías tratar eso con más cuidado?”
Carlos: “Excuse me, could you treat that more carefully?” So “cuidado” means...
Dylan: “Care”, “carefulness.”
Carlos: You know it made sense now that when my grandmother always told me “tienes que tener mucho cuidado”.
Dylan: Loosely translated, “be really careful.” This is a slogan from mothers of little children.
Carlos: I bet.
Dylan: See “cuidado” is a noun or past participle but we also have the verb “cuidar”.
Carlos: “To look after”, “to care for”, “to care of.” So when someone tells you “cuídate mucho”...
Dylan: They are expressing concern by telling you “to take care of yourself.”
Carlos: Well, isn’t that nice?
Dylan: It’s always nice to have someone who cares or someone who is “cuidadoso”.
Carlos: “Cuidadoso”, adjective, right? Means “caring”?
Dylan: Exactly.
Carlos: What’s next then?
Dylan: “Pagar”.
Carlos: “Pagar”, “to pay.” Everyone loves that.
Dylan: Well, not of the money that’s coming out of your pocket.
Carlos: Well no, no that is never fun especially when you are paying someone who isn’t looking out for you.
Dylan: Definitely. Think of the rudeness of the “mover” when he says “Señora, a mí me pagan por horas”.
Carlos: “Ma’am, I get paid by the hour” but Sofía in my opinion makes the correct response, “Pues no te voy a pagar todo si no eres más cuidadoso”.
Dylan: “Well, I am not going to pay you everything if you are not more careful.”
Carlos: Man, that just reminded me.
Dylan: What?
Carlos: “Necesito pagar mi recibo de teléfono”.
Dylan: When was your phone bill due?
Carlos: Man, last week.
Dylan: Well, get on it. You have received your “pago”.
Carlos: Well, that would be the related noun meaning “pay”, wouldn’t it?
Dylan: That’s exactly what it is. Now our next word is “quiebra” which comes from the verb “quebrar”, “to break.”
Carlos: Right and this is where Sofía is putting her foot down and says “Si se quiebra algo, ¡la culpa será tuya!”, “if something breaks, it will be your fault!”
Dylan: “Quebrar” can also mean “to bend” or “soften” but here it’s being used as “break.”
Carlos: I see. So a synonym would be “romper” or “incumplir”.
Dylan: Right, both of which mean “to break.”
Carlos: So how would I say “I broke my foot” using “quebrar”?
Dylan: “Me quebré el pie”.
Carlos: “Me quebré el pie”.
Dylan: “Me quebré el pie”.
Carlos: “Me quebré el pie”. Now I could use either “romper” or “incumplir” in that same sentence?
Dylan: Yeah.
Carlos: Nice, three words for the price of one.
Dylan: Well, here is one more for good luck. We have the noun “la quiebra”.
Carlos: Right “the break”, “the crack.” Well, let’s not break this rhythm, Dylan. Let’s move on.
Dylan: All right. Last but not least “culpa”.
Carlos: “Culpa”, “fault”. “No es mi culpa”.
Dylan: Well, it’s not your fault.
Carlos: Nothing. It’s just a phrase that I learned very quickly.
Dylan: Okay. Well, in the conversation we just heard the example but let’s hear it again.
Carlos: Right, “Si se quiebra algo, ¡la culpa será tuya!”, “If something breaks, it’s your fault.” But how was it his fault? He is not moving the stuff.
Dylan: But he hired them so it’s kind of his responsibility.
Carlos: True and you know what, I already provided a sample sentence which you could use.
Dylan: I don’t think that would fly very well.
Carlos: No, probably not. All we had to do is smile and nod and say “sí, mi amor”. Now “culpa” is a feminine noun but there is a verb attached also, no?
Dylan: Yes, the verb “culpar” which means “to blame” or “to accuse.”
Carlos: Man, that sounds pretty harsh.
Dylan: Today we have another preposition that needs a little more attention.
Carlos: Man, you know those prepositions are very attention hungry, Dylan.
Dylan: They deserve it. Here we have the preposition “a”.
Carlos: You know I do remember going through that with Natalia.
Dylan: But it always helps to go through it again.
Carlos: So really Dylan, how can we translate “a”?
Dylan: Well, it could be translated as “on”, “at”, “from”, “by” or “in” or not translate it at all.
Carlos: You know I still don’t get how could it possibly not be translated at all?
Dylan: Oh, first the preposition “a” can be used to indicate motion. Almost any verb indicating motion and even nouns can be followed by “a” before the destination.
Carlos: Like “por fin, mañana nos vamos a Europa”.
Dylan: “Europa”.
Carlos: “Europa”.
Dylan: “Europa”.
Carlos: “Europa”.
Dylan: Aha!
Carlos: I always have trouble saying “Europe” in Spanish guys. Help me Dylan, “Europa”...
Dylan: “Europa”.
Carlos: “Europa.” Okay finally, did I get it?
Dylan: Yeah.
Carlos: Okay, “finally, tomorrow we are going to Europe.”
Dylan: Yep and Europe is quite the exciting destination.
Carlos: “Europa”.
Dylan: “Europa”.
Carlos: “Europa”.
Dylan: “Europa”.
Carlos: “Europa”. We are going to have a lesson just on “Europa”.
Dylan: Yeah, that “R” is too strong there, Carlos. “Europa”.
Carlos: “Europa”. Okay you know but I seem to remember another type of destination there, Dylan.
Dylan: Yes, the person can be a destination. “Le compré un pantalón nuevo a Pedro”.
Carlos: “He bought new pants for Pedro.”
Dylan: No, “I bought new pants for Pedro.”
Carlos: I am sorry. “I bought new pants for Pedro.”
Dylan: Now another use. “A” can be used to indicate final purpose.
Carlos: Final purpose, okay.
Dylan: So if I say “Vengo a preguntar algo”. What am I saying?
Carlos: “I have come to ask you something.”
Dylan: Right, or I could say “Van a buscar ayuda”.
Carlos: “They are going to ask for help.” Wait, wait, wait, hold on. Is it that the use from today’s conversation?
Dylan: Good catch. Right, in today’s conversation, we heard Sofía say “Pues no te voy a pagar todo si no eres más cuidadoso”.
Carlos: “Well, I am not going to pay you for everything if you are not more careful.” So do we have another use, Dylan?
Dylan: Okay, “a” can also be used to indicate finalized action in ultimate intent.
Carlos: Ah, like “Aprendo a leer”, “I learn to read.”
Dylan: Right or another example would be “Ella enseña a nadar a sus alumnos”.
Carlos: “She teaches her students to swim.” Well, let’s move on to the next one.
Dylan: Good, because the next use of the preposition “a” indicates movement or distance.
Carlos: How so?
Dylan: “Él va de un lado al otro”.
Carlos: “He goes from one side to the other”, but wait! Hold up, Dylan. I didn’t notice the preposition “a” in that sentence.
Dylan: No, it’s not. I was going to bring this up but you beat me to it. In this example, we notice something that needs to be pointed out.
Carlos: And what’s that?
Dylan: Well, in this example, note the contraction of “a” and “el” into “al”.
Carlos: Now how do we know when to do this?
Dylan: We do this when the movement we express with “a” is being directed towards a masculine noun such as “el otro”, “the other.”
Carlos: Okay, that makes sense “a el” it kind of sounds bad and clumsy. I guess it would be easier to link them together and simply say “al”.
Dylan: Well, this will simply click one day.
Carlos: I hope so.
Dylan: Now one last use that we will go over today. The preposition “a” can be used to indicate points of time.
Carlos: Okay, that’s simple enough like from one point to another.
Dylan: Exactly.
Carlos: Like “Estudia de diez a doce”. “He studies from 10 to 12.”
Dylan: Or here is another one that will help make sense, “Trabajo de nueve a cinco”.
Carlos: “I work from 9 to 5.” That’s a long day but I guess it’s normal.
Dylan: What can you do? Now there is one more use we should discuss.
Carlos: Which?
Dylan: We also use the preposition “a” with direct and indirect object complement.
Carlos: Okay. We are going to need an explanation for that, Dylan.
Dylan: Okay. Well, for example, we use the preposition “a” with the direct object complement in this sentence. “En la calle vimos a tu hermana”. We cannot say “vimos tu hermana” but rather we must say “vimos a tu hermana”.
Carlos: Why?
Dylan: Well, this also occurs when the direct object complement is a person or a thing that we have personified.
Carlos: Ah, okay. So that means that the direct object complement is determined rather than undetermined in the mind of the speaker.
Dylan: You got it.
Carlos: Okay, I mean I was, you said it so excitingly was excellent. So for example “vimos a tu hijo en el jardín” refers to determine a person being your son, while “vimos un niño en el jardín” refers to an undetermined person, I mean like we don’t know who the child is.
Dylan: Right, and in the case of indirect object complements, we use “a” to express the person or thing that receives harm or benefit from the action of a verb.
Carlos: And do you have an example?
Dylan: Well, of course. For example, in this sentence, “yo envié un regalo a Pedro”, the direct complement is “un regalo” and the indirect complement is “Pedro”.
Carlos: You know, I see what you mean Dylan, but I think we will have to go to the grammar bank a little bit more for this.
Dylan: That’s what it’s there for, Carlos.


Carlos: That just about does it for today. Dylan, I’d like to share a study tip a listener shared with us.
Dylan: Ah, you are talking about the student who uses just the conversation tracks to review the lessons?
Carlos: As always Dylan, you read my mind.
Dylan: Hah you are right, Carlos.
Carlos: Yep. You know, a listener of ours listens to each lesson several times.
Dylan: Then afterwards, they get the conversation only track from our site.
Carlos: She then listens to them on shuffle again and again. She created her own immersion program using spanishpod101.com
Dylan: This is a great idea. Please give it a try and let us know what you think.
Carlos: ¡Nos vemos!
Dylan: ¡Chao!


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Please to leave a comment.
😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍

Monday at 6:30 pm
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Thanks to Herman Pearl for the music in today's lesson! I don't know about you, but I think that Gabriel should tell those movers a thing or two!

Friday at 9:32 am
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Hi Mira,

Thank you for your kind comments! We're glad this lesson cleared things up for you :)

Friday at 5:11 am
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Hola Dilon, Caros,

Thanks for easy and accurate explaination of prepositions:smile: For russian speakers as me it used to be hard to understand.

It's clear from now:grin:

Skinny Ties
Wednesday at 6:13 pm
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The points above are all very insightful, thanks very much.

Tuesday at 3:33 am
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Hey Julian!

Thank you for the kind words...we really appreciate it. Yes, if you live in Florida (especially south Florida) learning Spanish is a very good skill to have. If you have any special requests or any questions whatsoever, don't hesitate to write in! We will be happy to help.

Thanks again!


Tuesday at 3:20 am
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Living in Florida Spanish is a very fluent language and is a good credential to have. I am not as fluent with Spanish as I would like to be, but because of these lessons I am becoming and it proves to be more helpful to my process of learning a second language. The material is great and very well explained, great work guys!!

Julian from Florida