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Dylan: Hola, hola a todos, habla Dylan, ¿cómo están?
Carlos: What’s going on, pod101 world? My name is Carlo. “Do you know where to find the most beautiful Latin American woman?”
Dylan: In this lesson, you will learn about prenominal phrases.
Carlos: This conversation takes place in a home.
Dylan: This conversation is between Daniel and Andrés.
Carlos: The speakers are friends so they are speaking informally. Let’s listen to the conversation.
ANDRÉS: ¡Ella es la más bella!, siempre dices eso de todas, y cuando las conozco, ¡¡¡¡Son horribles!!!!!
DANIEL: Andrés, eso sí que no te lo permito, que te burles de mis gustos.
ANDRÉS: Bueno perdón, mejor dime ¿cómo se llama?, ¿De qué lugar es?, ¿De qué familia viene?
DANIEL: Ehh, bueno, ehhh, la verdad no lo sé.
ANDRÉS: Pero, ¡¡¡cómo!!! , ¿No lo sabes?
Andrés: 'She is the most beautiful!' You always say that of all of them and when I meet them…they’re horrible!!!
Daniel: Andrés, I will not allow you to make fun of my taste.
Andrés: Okay sorry, just tell me, what is her name? Where is she from? Where is her family from?
Daniel: Ummm, well, umm, the truth is I don’t know.
Andrés: But, how!!! You don’t know?
Carlos: Latinos are so proud of being proud, prideful is that a word?
Dylan: Prideful?
Carlos: Prideful. Yes, they are prideful people. We are proud people.
Dylan: Yes, we are.
Carlos: You know guys if you have a chance go to New York City for the Puerto Rican parade, you’ll see an overwhelming amount of pride.
Dylan: I heard it is awesome.
Carlos: I don’t like going to it to tell you the truth.
Dylan: You’ve never gone?
Carlos: I’ve gone. I don’t like it. You can’t move!
Dylan: Too much pride.
Carlos: Yes, too many Puerto Ricans in New York. Talk about like 30% of the City’s population in one place.
Dylan: Wow.
Carlos: It’s crazy and you know, I see the same pride, people going crazy with soccer matches.
Dylan: Oh, God! Because the world cup’s coming up.
Carlos: Is that why everybody is going crazy?
Dylan: Yes, they are trying to get into like the elimination stuff.
Carlos: Is that why my neighbors are screaming at the TV?
Dylan: Yes. Costa Rica is doing really, really good.
Carlos: I know they are actually, I did hear about that yesterday. Okay guys, let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
Dylan: “Siempre”.
Carlos: “Always”, “ever.”
Dylan: “Siem-pre”, “siempre”.
Dylan: “Horrible”.
Carlos: “Horrible.”
Dylan: “Ho-rri-ble”, “horrible”.
Dylan: “Permitir”.
Carlos: “To permit”, “to allow.”
Dylan: “Per-mi-tir”, “permitir”.
Dylan: “Burlarse”.
Carlos: “To mock something, somebody”, “to make fun of something, somebody.”
Dylan: “Bur-lar-se”, “burlarse”.
Dylan: “¿Cómo se llama?”
Carlos: “What’s your name?” Formal.
Dylan: “¿Có-mo se lla-ma?”, “¿cómo se llama?”
Dylan: “¿De qué lugar es?”
Carlos: “Where’s she/he from?”
Dylan: “¿De qué lu-gar es?, ¿De qué lugar es?”
Carlos: Let’s have a closer look at the usage of some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Dylan: The first word we’ll look at is “siempre”.
Carlos: “Siempre”, “always.” A very useful adverb.
Dylan: “Always”, “always.” These simple words sometimes fall through the cracks.
Carlos: What do you mean?
Dylan: It’s very common for people to get overwhelmed when they learn a new language and they may overlook words that are used daily.
Carlos: “Siempre”, “always.”
Dylan: Andrés is not buying Daniel’s description of the new love of his life.
Carlos: How do you know?
Dylan: Well, you can hear it in his voice. He’s almost mocking him the way he says “¡Ella es la más bella!, siempre dices eso de todas, y cuando las conozco, ¡¡¡¡Son horribles!!!!!”
Carlos: “She is the most beautiful. You always say that of all of them and when I meet them, they are horrible!” That doesn’t sound like almost mocking, that’s straight mocking.
Dylan: Friends always talk that way to each other.
Carlos: No, that they do. You know, I don’t know that I would take that very well if someone who wasn’t my friend said that to me.
Dylan: Yo siempre tengo la razón.
Carlos: Oh, I never would argue that fact, “nunca”.
Dylan: Which would be the “opuesto”, the “opposite.” Now we haven’t had a cognate in a while.
Carlos: You know we haven’t its true.
Dylan: Well, our next word is an adjective that I think is pretty obvious.
Carlos: I’ll be the judge of that Dylan.
Dylan: “Horrible”.
Carlos: “Horrible.” Okay that is obvious, especially since the spelling is exactly the same.
Dylan: So here we not only have a cognate but also a lesson in pronunciation.
Carlos: “Horrible”, “horrible.”
Dylan: But in our conversation we heard again, “¡¡¡¡Son horribles!!!!!!”
Carlos: “Horrible!”
Dylan: What difference do you notice?
Carlos: Well simply put, we don’t have a plural pronunciation of horrible in English.
Dylan: Right. In Spanish the number of an adjective must agree with the noun that it is modifying.
Carlos: So I could say, “los pantalones de Emilio son horribles”. “Emilio’s pants are horrible.”
Dylan: That’s another plural example.
Carlos: Okay, how about a singular?
Dylan: “No puedo recomendar esta película, es horrible”.
Carlos: Okay, “I can’t recommend this movie, it’s horrible.” You know, I’m tempted to bring up.
Dylan: Don’t, don’t, don’t you will take the lesson.
Carlos: Okay, now, not that it is a nice word but Andrés could have expressed his disbelief just as easily with the adjective “feo, fea”, “ugly.”
Dylan: It doesn’t sound like Daniel brings any girls who are just ugly, it seems to me that they might be “feísima”, “very, very ugly.”
Carlos: True Dylan, but don’t you know that beauty is in the eyes of the beholder?
Dylan: I’m not even going to answer that call of sarcasm.
Carlos: Okay, sorry.
Dylan: Our next word is the verb “permitir”, “to permit”, “to allow.”
Carlos: Now you must use this verb a lot.
Dylan: Why would you say that?
Carlos: Because you have two very young children and if there’s anything that I remember from my own youth it is that when there were somethings that I was allowed to do and there were other things that I was not allowed to do. The thing is, I had to be told that something was not allowed.
Dylan: You liked to test those boundaries huh?
Carlos: You have got to when you are that age.
Dylan: Bit you are right. Pico’s getting to that age when he is starting to take more risks and seeing what he can get away with.
Carlos: Just waiting until he’s a teenager, huh?
Dylan: Come on Carlos, there really isn’t a good reason to bring that up.
Carlos: Well, apparently Daniel didn’t take kindly to his friend’s sarcasm.
Dylan: Right, I can imagine him getting all serious suddenly and saying “Andrés, eso sí que no te lo permito, que te burles de mis gustos”.
Carlos: “Andres, I will not allow you to make fun of my tastes.” You know I bet if he had a glove, he would have slapped him with it and challenged him to a duel. How dare you sir!
Dylan: No permitamos eso. No fighting.
Carlos: You probably won’t permit that.
Dylan: No. Don’t you remember? We are all about peace and love.
Carlos: That’s right “pura vida” and all that stuff.
Dylan: So if something is “permitido” or “permitida”, what is it?
Carlos: “Permitted.” And obviously fighting is not.
Dylan: Perfect.
Carlos: I’m learning.
Dylan: Next is a verb I know you haven’t heard before.
Carlos: Yes?
Dylan: Well, maybe you have, but I would be surprised.
Carlos: Try me.
Dylan: “Burlarse”.
Carlos: Okay, you are right. You know I haven’t heard that verb before.
Dylan: “To mock something or somebody”, “to make fun of something or somebody.”
Carlos: Okay, so when Daniel says “Andrés, eso sí que no te lo permito, que te burles de mis gustos”.
Dylan: “Andrés I will not allow you to make fun of my taste.”
Carlos: Okay, so generally not a good thing making fun of people. You know that always seems so childish to me.
Dylan: Yes and the funny thing is you remember when you were a child and it was the norm.
Carlos: You know I have some people I should call to apologize.
Dylan: I’m sure they are all over it. Let sleeping dogs lie.
Carlos: You have a point you know, I used to make fun or mocking as a tool in a classroom.
Dylan: How?
Carlos: Well, keep in mind that I was teaching in the inner city and you have to show no insecurities whatsoever with students.
Dylan: Okay.
Carlos: So one way to do that is to mock them.
Dylan: What do you mean mock them?
Carlos: Well, if you make fun of a teenager, not completely humiliate them but poke fun at them, it forms a bond.
Dylan: Carlos, el profesor no debe burlarse de los estudiantes.
Carlos: I know that it’s [inaudible 07:17] to mock the students but I’m telling you that if done correctly it’s a good thing and you know what really salvages the power structure of the class room. But you need to understand that there’s a fine line, that’s all.
Dylan: Okay, because most of the time “las burlas no son buenas”, “the taunts aren’t good.”
Carlos: I know, I know, but for those teachers out there, try it out, but tread lightly.
Dylan: Well, thank you for that tutorial on teaching but remember that we are teaching Spanish.
Carlos: Right, what’s the next word?
Dylan: Actually we have a set question. The most basic of the basic if I’m not mistaken is actually one of the first things that we’ve gone over when someone begins their Spanish studies.
Carlos: Okay. It’s either “Hola…” no wait, you said it was a question. So it must be “¿cómo se llama?”, “what is your/his/her name?” You know what, that is pretty basic.
Dylan: It’s always a good idea to revisit the way you’ve learned.
Carlos: So this will be quick. Actually it’s a good study tip.
Dylan: Why?
Carlos: Well, it’s the example from the conversation.
Dylan: “Bueno perdón, mejor dime, ¿cómo se llama?, ¿De qué lugar es?, ¿De qué familia viene?”
Carlos: And how do we translate that?
Dylan: Okay, “sorry, just tell me, what’s her name? Where is she from? Where is her family from?” So what’s the good study tip that you have stumbled upon?
Carlos: Well, simply put, we are usually taught that “¿cómo se llama?” is the formal way to ask for someone’s name when meeting them.
Dylan: Right and here we see it being used in a different way. To ask a person about someone else’s name not directly involved in the conversation.
Carlos: Nice you know I can’t think of anywhere where that’s actually pointed out.
Dylan: Well, you’ve been learning long enough where this stuff comes out but you know there’s another way that this could have been asked.
Carlos: Right, “¿cuál es su nombre?”, “what is his/her/your name?”
Dylan: And last but not least, let’s get into another set question.
Carlos: ¡Vamos!
Dylan: “¿De qué lugar es?”
Carlos: “Where is she from?”
Dylan: And this question is asked amongst Andrés apology.
Carlos: Right and I guess more directly translated it might be, “what place is she from?”
Dylan: Yes, the more common question would be...
Carlos: “¿De dónde es?”
Dylan: “Where is she/he/you from?”, formal.
Carlos: But now we know two ways.
Dylan: Okay, we saw a grammar point many, many times in today’s conversation.

Lesson focus

Carlos: Right, like two or three times, right?
Dylan: Yes. Today we are going to take a closer look at the interrogative prenominal phrase “de qué”.
Carlos: So what does an interrogative prenominal phrase mean?
Dylan: Actually it’s pretty simple. This means that it is a phrase with which we form questions.
Carlos: There is another use too, right?
Dylan: Right, we also use this phrase to distinguish one thing from a group. If we didn’t need to make this distinction, then the question might be “¿de dónde es usted?”, “where are you from?”
Carlos: Okay, I see.
Dylan: However, here we will look at how to ask from what place someone is from, distinguishing one place from another.
Carlos: Okay.
Dylan: We use the following word order to ask, “what country are you from?” Interrogative prenominal phrase plus place plus verb plus personal pronoun. “¿[De qué] + [país] + [eres] + [tú]? “.”What country are you from?”
Carlos: But translated literally, wouldn’t this mean “from what country are you?”
Dylan: Yes, but that’s not really how we would ask the question in English but rather we ask “what country are you from?”
Carlos: Now, what about personal pronouns?
Dylan: Remember that we often omit personal pronouns in Spanish.
Carlos: Right, I forgot.
Dylan: Do you remember why we include them?
Carlos: We only include them to clarify what would otherwise be ambiguous or to add emphasis on the person.
Dylan: Let’s take a closer look.
Carlos: ¡Vamos!
Dylan: Interrogative prenominal phrase plus place plus verb.
Carlos: So “¿[De qué] + [país] + [eres?] “. “What country are you from?”
Dylan: In this example we know that “eres” is referring to “tú” because we only ever use “eres” for the second person singular. For example “tú” there is no ambiguity here. If you don’t want to ask what country someone is from then you can just substitute another place for “país”, “country.”
Carlos: So I assume we are going to take a look at that now.
Dylan: And you would be correct in your assumption.
Carlos: Okay, let’s check that out.
Dylan: Interrogative prenominal phrase plus place plus verb plus personal pronoun.
Carlos: Okay, so that would be “[¿De qué] plus [ciudad] plus [eres] plus [tú?]”. “What city are you from?”
Dylan: I think it would help if we heard some sample sentences using these formations.
Carlos: I think so too.
Dylan: “¿De qué ciudad soy yo?”
Carlos: “What city am I from?”
Dylan: “¿De qué continente eres tú?”
Carlos: “What continent are you from?”
Dylan: “¿De qué estado es él?”
Carlos: “What state is he from?”
Dylan: “¿De qué región es ella?”
Carlos: “What region is she from?”
Dylan: “¿De qué país es usted?”
Carlos: “What country are you from sir?”
Dylan: “¿De qué barrio somos nosotros?”
Carlos: “What neighborhood are we from?”
Dylan: “¿De qué planeta sois vosotros?”
Carlos: “What planet are you all from?”
Dylan: “¿De qué pueblo son ellos?”
Carlos: “What town are they from?”
Dylan: “¿De qué distrito son ellas?”
Carlos: “What burrow are they from?”
Dylan: “¿De qué colegio son ustedes?”
Carlos: “What school are you from?”
Dylan: See how it works?
Carlos: Now it’s clear and think about the example from the conversation. “¿De qué lugar es?”
Dylan: Remember that the verb from this question is always going to be “ser”.
Carlos: Because we are talking about origin.
Dylan: The conjugation of “ser” must agree with the subject which is also the personal pronoun. Again this shows why it’s so important to learn the personal pronouns with all verbs.
Carlos: However, we should point out that we can use other verbs to form similar questions.
Dylan: The key is to think of the phrase “de qué” as “from which” or “from what.” It’s tempting to think about it as “where”, but by doing this you lose the whole concept of distinction.
Carlos: And we wouldn’t want to do that.
Dylan: Now there are some related expressions.
Carlos: Of course.
Dylan: The interrogative prenominal phrase “de qué” is not reserved for the verb “ser”. Quite the contrary, we use it with many verbs to ask many different kinds of questions.
Carlos: For example?
Dylan: “¿De qué panadería compras tu pan?”
Carlos: “From which bakery do you buy your bread?”
Dylan: “¿De qué bus te bajaste?”
Carlos: “Which bus did you get off?”
Dylan: “¿De qué taller aprendiste a escribir así?”


Carlos: “From what workshop did you learn to write like this?” That just about does it for today.
Carlos: Okay guys, ¡nos vemos!
Dylan: ¡Chao, gracias!


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