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Natalia: Bueno días, me llamo Natalia.
Carlos: What’s going on? I am Carlos.
Natalia: Costa Rican Spanish series, lesson 19.
Carlos: Look At The Small Amount of Stars!
Natalia: Good to be here today. How are you doing Carlos?
Carlos: I am doing fine. What’s the good word Audience, my name is Carlos and I am joined by the M to my M of the spanishpod101.com team Nati. Nati, how are you doing?
Natalia: I am doing great Carlos. I do have a question for you though.
Carlos: What’s up?
Natalia: You are the M to my M, the yin to my yang, the cream to my coffee, do you think all those or they just come out natural.
Carlos: Well not cream to my coffee but…
Natalia: ¡Qué chile más malo!
Carlos: See, she is already reviewing lesson #17 and no, it was a good joke.
Natalia: Okay. You be the judge listeners.
Carlos: All right anyway welcome back to the Costa Rican Spanish series at spanishpod101.com
Natalia: That’s right. If you ever plan to come to tiquicia, you need to listen to this podcast, it’s imperative.
Carlos: Well, no need to be so serious. I don’t think it’s imperative but it definitely helps.
Natalia: It’s true. How have you found your experience of Costa Rica since you started on this project?
Carlos: Actually no it has helped a lot. I mean I am not using all the phrases that I have learned here but I do recognize a lot more things when I hear people talk.
Natalia: And that’s the key, always listen.
Carlos: And I will be honest. I would have had no idea what the word “mae” meant.
Natalia: No that’s for sure, Carlos.
Carlos: And let me tell you, it’s used all the time.
Natalia: Every single time.
Carlos: All right, well what new gem we are going to learn today Natie.
Natalia: Well, today we are going to continue our discussion of weather kind of.
Carlos: What do you mean kind of?
Natalia: Well in today’s conversation, we meet Aida and John who are gazing at the moon and stars in a clear night.
Carlos: Sounds sweet.
Natalia: Oh Carlos, don’t be corny.
Carlos: Oh come on, Aida, Angel, Stars, Moon, all you need is some background music.
Natalia: Where did that music come from?
Carlos: I don’t know.
Natalia: Okay anyways don’t forget to reference newbie lesson 19 for more in depth study.
Carlos: Also compare and contrast our lesson with the other regional series of spanishpod101.com
Natalia: That’s right Joe and Bea’s Peruvian series and Dave and Megan’s Iberian series. You can really learn the difference between European and American Spanish.
Carlos: And you talk about me stating the obvious.
Natalia: Carlos.
Carlos: All right, all right. No, no let’s get into today’s conversation.
Natalia: But first, let’s look back at newbie lesson 19 where we heard the following conversation.
GLICERIO: ¡Mira, Fiorella! La luna está llena.
FIORELA: Es muy brillante.
GLICERIO: Hay muchas estrellas también.
FIORELA: Es verdad. Veo escorpión. ¿Ves?
GLICERIO: ¡Sí, mira la cola!
Carlos: This time with the translation. Ahora incluiremos la traducción.
GLICERIO: ¡Mira, Fiorella! La luna está llena. Look Fiorella, the moon is full.
FIORELA: Es muy brillante. It’s really bright.
GLICERIO: Hay muchas estrellas también. There are lots of stars too.
FIORELA: Es verdad. Veo escorpión. ¿Ves? It’s true. I see Scorpion, do you see?
GLICERIO: ¡Sí, mira la cola! Yeah look at the tail.
Carlos: Now, let’s hear that conversation in the tico way.
AIDA: ¡Mae Ojo!.. ¡Vea esa luna!
ANGEL: ¡Qué chiva que está!
AIDA: Vea el poco de estrellas.
ANGEL: ¿Usted sabe contar esa vara?
AIDA: Usted está chiflado.
Carlos: Once again slowly.
AIDA: ¡Mae Ojo!.. ¡Vea esa luna!
ANGEL: ¡Qué chiva que está!
AIDA: Vea el poco de estrellas.
ANGEL: ¿Usted sabe contar esa vara?
AIDA: Usted está chiflado.
Carlos: This time with the translation. Ahora incluiremos la traducción.
AIDA: ¡Mae Ojo!.. ¡Vea esa luna! Dude, check it out, look at the moon.
ANGEL: ¡Qué chiva que está! That’s so cool.
AIDA: Vea el poco de estrellas. Look at the small amount of stars.
ANGEL: ¿Usted sabe contar esa vara? Imagined counting them?
AIDA: Usted está chiflado. You are crazy.
Carlos: Man, I think that is the most philosophically inclined conversation that we have heard.
Natalia: Why is that?
Carlos: Well, think about it Nati. Counting the stars.
Natalia: Ah well, depends, depends, depends. Depends on how you see it and the situation and everything. You can be like ah, let’s count the stars again.
Carlos: My God, she is in a good mood today. This is weird. All right, where would you like to begin our comparison of the conversations today?
Natalia: I think the first line is a good place to start.
Carlos: Okay. So in our newbie conversation, we heard “¡Mira, Fiorella! La luna está llena.” Look Fiorella, the moon is full.
Natalia: Right. And in our Tico conversation, it sounded like “¡Mae Ojo!.. ¡Vea esa luna!”
Carlos: Dude, check it out, look at the moon. Okay I see why you want to start there.
Natalia: Mmm ¿porqué?
Carlos: Because doesn’t “ojo” mean eye?
Natalia: Yes.
Carlos: So instead of “mira” or look, Aida says “Eye! The moon is full.
Natalia: Well she doesn’t scream “Eye!” like you just did but yes that will be a direct translation Carlos.
Carlos: So “ojo” is like a colloquial way to say look.
Natalia: Exactly.
Carlos: I like that Natie.
Natalia: What?
Carlos: Eye! The moon is full.
Natalia: But why screaming Carlos?
Carlos: I am not screaming.
Natalia: You know, well it’s sort of like check it out. It’s sort of like to put your eye on it.
Carlos: That is a good comparison. Put your eye on it, you know what I like that. I think I will use it.
Natalia: Uhoo so mister, you wanted to impress me using the imperative mood?
Carlos: Yeah yes I did.
Natalia: Well you have no idea what I am talking about, do you?
Carlos: Okay no but I did want to talk about the informal and formal commands.
Natalia: Carlos.
Carlos: Yeah.
Natalia: Same thing.
Carlos: Good. You passed my test. I was seeing if you knew.
Natalia: Ah that’s so cheap. That’s so, so, so, so cheap.
Carlos: But if for argument sake, I wasn’t clear on the rules for informal and informal commands or the imperative mood, what would they be?
Natalia: For argument sake.
Carlos: Yeah for argument sake.
Natalia: Well luckily we have two examples in our newbie and tico conversations.
Carlos: How lucky we are.
Natalia: So remember the first line of the newbie conversation.
Carlos: Yeah wasn’t it “¡Mira, Fiorella! La luna está llena.”
Natalia: Right. Look Fiorella, the moon is full. What verbs did you notice?
Carlos: Hmm “mirar” to look and “llenar” to fill.
Natalia: Ten points Carlos. Which verb is being used to tell someone to do something.
Carlos: “Mirar”. Look.
Natalia: 20 points.
Carlos: Racking them up.
Natalia: So in what sense is “mirar” conjugated?
Carlos: Mira. Well that would be the “usted” form.
Natalia: Okay. Question, do you think Glicerio and Fiorella know each other?
Carlos: Oh yeah I would say that they are familiar with each other. Well so wait, why didn’t Aida use the “tú” form?
Natalia: Yes, an informal command, she would but it’s just a little confusing at first because of the positive command for “tú” is almost the same as the present tense to form of the verb, just drop the “s”.
Carlos: Okay. So that would make an informal command?
Natalia: Right.
Carlos: Well, what about a formal command?
Natalia: Once again luckily there is an example to work with from our conversations.
Carlos: What are the odds?
Natalia: Well Carlos, you should be happy man, we have examples. At least, imagine me explaining you all from scratch.
Carlos: God, I don’t want to imagine that.
Natalia: Oh my god, well in our Tico conversation, Angel says “Vea el poco de estrellas.”
Carlos: Right look at all the small amount of stars.
Natalia: And what verb do you notice here?
Carlos: Ver
Natalia: And how is it conjugated?
Carlos: Not sure. Isn’t the “usted” form of the verb “ver” “ve”.
Natalia: Yep.
Carlos: So I have no idea.
Natalia: The A is what makes the formal command.
Carlos: How so?
Natalia: Both the positive and negative polite commands in the singular form are based on the “usted”.
Carlos: Okay and then?
Natalia: Aha in the present tense, except that A and E endings trade places.
Carlos: Alright, so we will just change this up.
Natalia: More or less….
Carlos: You know Nati, I would love some examples.
Natalia: Hmm man, let’s try together. Teaching game on how to fish and all that.
Carlos: Ah I am game.
Natalia: Okay. I will give you a verb and you give me the formal and informal commands.
Carlos: Ey word, let’s do it, I am not scared.
Natalia: You are not scared, you are….Okay, a common verb, hmm let me see “hablar”.
Carlos: To talk. Cool, I know that one.
Natalia: Okay. Hablar formal.
Carlos: Alright so let me see “hablar” formal command. All right “usted” form in the present tense, switch up the A and the E “hable”?
Natalia: Right and informal
Carlos: All right, all right, informal “tú” form “hablas” but drop the S “habla”.
Natalia: Yeay I said it once and I will say it again.
Carlos: I am such a good student.
Natalia: No I am such a good teacher.
Carlos: Okay. It’s that time again, localisms. We should have like theme music for localisms.
Natalia: Oh my God! Well as long as it is not your typical music, I am cool with it.
Carlos: What interesting and insightful local idiomatic phrases are we going to learn today Natie?
Natalia: An attempt of what you just tried?
Carlos: What?
Natalia: More Sarcasm.
Carlos: You know me, I am always game for that.
Natalia: Okay on a clear night, how many stars can you see in New York?
Carlos: Well that depends. If you are on New York City, you are lucky to se 2 or 3 with all lights.
Natalia: Okay.
Carlos: But in Western New York where Joe is from, on a clear night, you can see them all, pretty much all.
Natalia: So in Costa Rican, we don’t have a lot of those skyscrapers that block the stars. We can always see them clearly.
Carlos: Okay.
Natalia: So where is the sarcasm being used in the conversation?
Carlos: Well, that’s easy. That would be “Vea el poco de estrellas.”
Natalia: de estrellas
Carlos: De estrellas. Well look at the small amount of stars. That’s tico sarcasm.
Natalia: Yeah. Don’t you get it, they are saying a little one. There is actually a lot of stars.
Carlos: That’s so clever.
Natalia: Hah you should learn from that.
Carlos: I didn’t know. It’s really clever but one thing is on my mind though.
Natalia: What’s that?
Carlos: If Angel and Aida didn’t know each other, why are they speaking to each other formally?
Natalia: Have you noticed Carlos that in the Costa Rican Spanish, we got a very informal, formal way of speaking. So sometimes, we are speaking formally but both things are accepted. So unless you are like in a formal dinner, then you hear it all the time formal but if you are just in a party or whatever, you can see people switching from formal to informal. So either way it’s fine.
Carlos: Alright, I see. So you can switch it up really?
Natalia: Yes. This will conclude today’s lesson. Don’t forget to reference this lesson with the newbie lesson 19 and be sure to pick up the PDF at spanishpod101.com Also leave us some love in the forum or comment on today’s lesson.


Carlos: Let us know what you liked and what you didn’t like. We will see you again tomorrow.
Natalia: Nos vemos pronto. See you again.


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Dialogue - Costa Rican

Dialogue - Standard


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Tuesday at 06:30 PM
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Thanks to Kevin Macleod for the music in today's lesson. Has anyone ever been to San José, Costa Rica? It is the capital of this Central American country. I'm sure our hosts Carlos and Natalia would be glad to run into a few Spod101 students!

Wednesday at 03:04 AM
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I think the formal and informal switch ups are similar to what I'd call 'false formality', For example, I may call my friends 'Sir' which is a formal way to address someone but it is not meant to be taken formally. Any opinions out there?

Tuesday at 08:30 PM
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I find it really interesting to see the way that formal and informal forms of address are interchanged in the Costa Rican Regional Form. In Peru, for example, my friends would definitely look at me oddly if I addressed them formally. It would come off as a joke; on the other hand, my aunts and uncles might do the same if I addressed them informally.

It's interesting what a formal address can do for you, since it really shows the respect that you're willing to give someone. A good verb to know in relation to this is "tutear". It comes from the word "tú", which is the informal "you" form. Thus, "tutear" means "to address someone informally". So, if you're playing it safe and speaking to someone in the "usted" form, they say "tutéame por favor" (speak to me informally please). At that point, if you didn't switch over and start speaking informally, you may offend them! Oh the idiosyncrasies!