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Lesson Transcript

Megan: ¡Bienvenidos a Spanishpod101.com!
David: ¡Buenos días! Me llamo David.
Megan: And I’m Megan. Iberian Spanish Series, Lesson 21.
David: “¿Puedes venir? ¡Voy!”
Megan: Last time we looked at some different kinds of Spanish music and verbs related to it, like “oír” and “escuchar”.
David: Today’s lesson references Newbie Lesson 21 – “Come here! I’ll be right there!”
Megan: Also in this lesson we’re going to look a bit at the Imperative in Spanish and how we can ask for something without sounding too demanding.
Megan: Okay! Let’s get started by going back to Newbie Lesson 21 where we heard the following conversation:
ROSANA: ¡Tomás, ven para acá!
TOMÁS: ¿Dónde estás, Rosana?
ROSANA: Estoy en el patio.
TOMÁS: Ya voy para allá.
M3: This time with the translation. Ahora incluiremos la traducción.
ROSANA: ¡Tomás, ven para acá!
F3: “Tomas, come here!”
TOMÁS: ¿Dónde estás, Rosana?
M3: “Where are you, Rosana?”
ROSANA: Estoy en el patio.
F3: “I’m on the patio.”
TOMÁS: Ya voy para allá.
M3: “I’ll be right there!”
Megan: David, would you say “ven para acá”?
David: Maybe. I would say something like “ven para acá” or “ven ‘pa’ acá”, but you know, in Spain it’s not very common to say “acá” or “allá”, it’s more common to say “aquí” or “allí”.
Megan: Yes, I’ve noticed that. Well, now let’s hear what that dialogue sounds like in Iberian Spanish.
David: María, ¿puedes venir?
Megan: Dame un minuto, ¿dónde estás?
David: Estoy en la cocina. ¡Porfa, date prisa!
Megan: ¡Voy!
M3: Once again, slowly. Una vez más, esta vez lentamente.
David: María, ¿puedes venir?
Megan: Dame un minuto, ¿dónde estás?
David: Estoy en la cocina. ¡Porfa, date prisa!
Megan: ¡Voy!
M3: This time with the translation. Ahora incluiremos la traducción.
David: “María, ¿puedes venir?” - “Mary, can you come?”
Megan: “Dame un minuto, ¿dónde estás?” - “Give me a sec. Where are you?”
David: “Estoy en la cocina. ¡Porfa, date prisa!” - “I’m in the kitchen. Please, hurry up!”
Megan: “¡Voy!” - “I’m coming!”
Megan: How’s it going today, David?
David: It’s not being a very good day, a bit hard.
Megan: A little stressful, no?
David: Yes.
Megan: Well, what do we have today here, problems in the kitchen, people not getting along?
David: Well, not really. I’m just in a hurry, “tengo prisa”, but nothing serious.
Megan: What do you think? Do you think it’s normal for Spanish men to cook or, I don’t know, I know a lot of men who cook here in Spain, but what do you think of the normal in general?
David: Well, I couldn’t say what is then a normal situation. It’s hard to say, but I could say that new generations in Spain really believe in equality and we work and share duties at home on their quality point of view. But I’m sure there are still some people, maybe older people, who don’t.
Megan: Yes, definitely! Well, I think that’s true everywhere. But in your house it’s you who cooks at home, right?
David: Well, I think that’s what I make you believe. Yo cocino para las visitas, but it’s Shanti, my wife, who cooks everyday for both of us.
Megan: ¡Ajá! ¡No me digas! You’ve been fooling us all this time.
David: I have to admit.
Megan: Okay! Let’s get into today’s lesson. I think we should probably talk a little bit about the Imperative, or the “Imperativo”, don’t you think so?
David: Sí, yes. There are two examples in today’s conversation. Can you say the first one, Megan?
Megan: Right! In the Iberian version I said: “Dame un minuto”, literally “Give me a minute!”, though it has the meaning more of “Give me a sec!” or “Dame un segundo”.
David: That’s right! “Da” is the Imperative form for the verb “dar”, “to give”, so “da” means “give”, it’s a second person, singular. And we add the pronoun “me” which means “to me”. So, “dame” which is just one word means “give me”. When you use the Imperative, were you been demanding or bossy?
Megan: No, not in Spanish. I think it has the same meaning as in English, it’s just a command, but it’s not bossy. And were you being demanding when you used the Imperative with me?
David: Maybe. I said “¡Porfa, date prisa!” which means “Please, hurry up!”.
Megan: And “Porfa” is a short form for “Por favor”, right?
David: Yes.
Megan: And don’t you also or kids also say “Porfi” instead of “Porfa”, right?
David: Yes.
Megan: Sounds kind of whiny. “¡Porfi! ¡Porfi!”.
David: Yes, kids use that “Porfi”, but you know, I use “Porfa”. It’s not very serious, but you can use it in a casual situation.
Megan: So you probably wouldn’t use it at work, only with people in your immediate surroundings.
David: Yes.
Megan: So, we find the same Imperative form “Da”, which means “you give”, but here we also add the pronoun “te”, which means “to you”. “Date”, literally means “give to you”.
David: Right, though in this example it’s just the pronoun for the verb “darse prisa”, which means “to hurry up”.
Megan: Okay! So it’s just a set expression, “darse prisa”.
David: Yes.
Megan: And it’s interesting that the first Imperative form, “Dame un minuto”, is not demanding at all and we don’t have to add “Por favor”, but in the second example “¡Porfa, date prisa!” we add “please” in the phrase that sounds more demanding.
David: Yes. In fact, I’m being a bit bossy because I need your help.
Megan: It’s funny because I really just started to notice that I think that when you say “Por favor” it’s the complete opposite of English. It actually makes it sound rude, sometimes.
David: Yes.
Megan: Doesn’t it?
David: Maybe.
Megan: “Ponme un café, por favor”. That sounds bad, “Give me a coffee, please!”. It would be better to just say “Give me a coffee!”
David: Yes.
Megan: Isn’t that funny?
David: Maybe, yes.
Megan: Cultural thing.
David: You know, you are being a bit bossy and you try to make it softer by adding “please”. Okay, yes! So, could you review the standard version for this phrase.
Megan: Sure! In the standard version we heard:
F2: “¡Tomás, ven para acá!”
F3: “Tomas, come here!”
Megan: And this is really demanding, there’s no “por favor”, there are exclamation points in the Imperative. Do you think it sounds demanding?
David: Yes, it sounds a bit demanding.
F2: “¡Tomás, ven para acá!”
F3: “Tomas, come here!”
David: I changed a bit just my manners in the Iberian version. “María, ¿puedes venir?”.
Megan: “¿Puedes venir?”, which means “Can you come?”. So, you’re asking and you’re not using the Imperative Mood.
David: But I really need you to come.
Megan: Right! So, it’s basically a command in the form of a question.
David: Yes, right.
Megan: And I think we have here one of those patterns that can help us a lot in improving our Spanish. We have “puedes” plus an Infinitive which means “can you do something”, basically, plus a verb. Do you think that this is something that’s used a lot in Spanish?
David: Definitely. It’s a very good pattern for asking someone to do something. We can even use it to give other sounding nice.
Megan: You sound so Machiavellian.
David: Okay! Not always you use it, you’re ordering someone. For example, “¿Puedes comprar el pan?”.
Megan: “Can you buy bread?”. I think it’s sort of how we say in English “Would you mind buying some bread?” when we’re not really asking whether you would mind, we’re saying do it.
David: Yes. And, you know, you can say “¿Puedes apagar la luz?”.
Megan: “Can you turn the light off?” Maybe sort of indirect form of being bossy.
David: Yes.
Megan: “¿Puedes callarte?”.
David: “Can you shut up?” It really sounds Imperative although you’re asking.
Megan: Right! So, I don’t think we have to worry about it too much, because in English we have a lot of the same sort of subtleties, though I would say in Spanish you tend to be more direct about asking people to do things and some of our excessive politeness isn’t always necessary.
David: Yes. So, we change the Imperative Mood in the standard version:
F2: “¡Tomás, ven para acá!”.
F3: “Tomas, come here!”
David: Into the question in the Iberian version: “María, ¿puedes venir?”, and we may be so demanding. But remember that the intention and the tone itself say sometimes as much as the words themselves.
Megan: David?
David: Yes?
Megan: “¿Puedes terminar?”
David: Can you translate that?
Megan: “Can you finish up already?”
David: Okay!


David: So, I think that will do it for today’s lesson.
Megan: See you soon!
David: ¡Nos vemos pronto!

Dialogue - Iberian

Dialogue - Standard