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Lesson Transcript

Carlos: Costa Rican Spanish #3. Man, that’s Excellent! My name is Carlos.
Natalia: Natalia here.
Carlos: Muy bienvenidos. How are you doing today Natie?
Natalia: Doing great, Carlos and yourself.
Carlos: Really can’t complain. Today we have the third lesson of the Costa Rican Spanish series in spanishpod101.com
Natalia: It’s so great to be showing everyone in the pod101 world what Spanish is like here in Costa Rica.
Carlos: I know. I mean this really adds so much more flavor to the course as a whole.
Natalia: That’s right. Here we compare Costa Rican speech to the standard Spanish that you will find in the core curriculum of spanishpod101.
Carlos: That’s right and by doing this, we show you what Costa Rican Spanish is all about.
Natalia: The other thing that’s unique, in these lessons, you get the chance to understand the context where these expressions come up.
Carlos: And you know sometimes, it takes a little bit of knowledge of Costa Rican culture to make that happen. We’ve got a lot to go over today, so just hold on tight.
Natalia: And join us for this lesson of spanishpod101.com
Carlos: Now Natie, what did we go over last time?
Natalia: We looked at the plural forms of the verb ir in the present tense.
Carlos: And that’s right and when it’s used in greetings.
Natalia: Yep. Today, we are going to pick up where we left off and look at some more of those key questions and answers that are bound to come up while greeting people.
Carlos: Remember that today’s lesson references newbie lesson 3, who are you? So if you pick that one up too, then you are really going to get a lot more out of this lesson and you can also pick up Peruvian lesson 3 and Iberian lesson 3.
Natalia: With all those regional forums, you can really broaden your understanding of Spanish.
Carlos: What time is it?
Natalia: It’s time to get into today’s conversation.
CÉSAR: ¿Quién eres tú?
AMANDA: Yo soy Amanda. ¿Y tú?
CÉSAR: Yo soy César. Soy músico.
AMANDA: ¡Qué bueno! Yo soy profesora.
CÉSAR: ¡Qué interesante!
Carlos: And now with the translation. Ahora incluiremos la traducción.
CÉSAR: ¿Quién eres tú? Who are you?
AMANDA: Yo soy Amanda. ¿Y tú? I am Amanda and you?
Carlos: Yo soy César. Soy músico. I am Caesar. I am a musician.
AMANDA: ¡Qué bueno! Yo soy profesora. Great. I am a teacher.
Carlos: ¡Qué interesante! How interesting!
Carlos: So Natalia, does that conversation sound very local or do you think that it will be understood pretty much anywhere in the Spanish spoken world.
Natalia: Well Carlos, I think it’s pretty standard. Anyone who speaks Spanish would understand that.
Carlos: Alright. So now, let’s look at how the conversation might sound in Costa Rican Spanish.
Carlos: ¿Y usted, quién es?
Natalia: Yo soy Viviana ¿y usted?
Carlos: Soy Julian. Soy trovador.
Natalia: ¡Mae, qué chiva! Yo soy escritora.
Carlos: ¡Qué bueno!
Carlos: Let’s hear the same conversation a little slower.
Carlos: ¿Y usted, quién es?
Natalia: Yo soy Viviana ¿y usted?
Carlos: Soy Julian. Soy trovador.
Natalia: ¡Mae, qué chiva! Yo soy escritora.
Carlos: ¡Qué bueno!
Carlos: Wow, it’s interesting to hear those two conversations next to each other. So Natie, how would you like to begin this comparison?
Natalia: Well let’s start by looking at the way the question who are you was asked in the conversation from newbie lesson 3. Here we heard.
Carlos: ¿Quién eres tú?
Natalia: ¿Quién eres tú?
Carlos: Right and in the Costa Rican version, we heard ‘¿Y usted, quién es?’ and who are you but wait a minute Nati, you know it doesn’t sound that much different in English.
Natalia: Well but there is some big difference in the Spanish.
Carlos: Like what?
Natalia: Yeah in our last lesson, we made the point that the personal pronoun ‘usted’ can be used in any situation and not simply formally.
Carlos: Right, right but unlike Mario and Elena’s conversation in lesson 2, it seems to me that Giulian and Viviana don’t know each other. I mean would this be an example of a formal situation in which ‘usted’ should be used?
Natalia: Well claro, when meeting someone new socially and professionally, using ‘usted’ shows respect to the person you are speaking with.
Carlos: Entiendo. I think I get it.
Natalia: Well does Viviana respond to Julian with ‘usted’ or ‘tú’?
Carlos: Hold on, ‘usted’.
Natalia: Right.
Carlos: Cool. So if someone addresses me with ‘usted’ I shouldn’t respond using ‘tú’.
Natalia: Correct. Remember, respect should go both ways.
Carlos: You know what, that does make sense. Now I’ve seen that the word Usted can also be abbreviated. I mean when it is, what is it that we write?
Natalia: Buena observación, Carlos. That’s a great observation. Just as you said, we spell Usted but we can also abbreviate it by using an uppercase U and a lower case d followed by a period.
Carlos: Wait, wait okay Capital U, Lower Case D period. All right, and I think I got that but man, I have to say it will be then for me to be like Ud.
Natalia: Well that’s Ud. Any Spanish speaker wouldn’t think twice to say Usted no matter which way it's spelled.
Carlos: Alright. So let me ask you one more question about this.
Natalia: Which one?
Carlos: Well, one more.
Natalia: Go ahead with it.
Carlos: Is there something similar about the plural form?
Natalia: Well claro. you are addressing more than one person. In this respectful or formal way, we say ‘ustedes’.
Carlos: Ustedes.
Natalia: Right. And ‘ustedes’ is spelled ustedes, however if you want to abbreviate it, you simply write Upper case U, Lower case D and s and then a period.
Carlos: Okay so usted for the singular and ustedes for the plural?
Natalia: Yes.
Carlos: Alright, nice. So again the correct way to respond to ¿Y usted, quién es? who are you is ‘Yo soy Viviana ¿y usted?’
Natalia: Well Carlos, if your name is Viviana you can say that but yes if somebody asked you a question using usted, I recommend you that you respond with usted as well.
Carlos: You know what, I will definitely keep my ear out in the street when that happens.
Natalia: That’s a good idea. So again, in newbie lesson 3, the question who are you was asked.
Carlos: ¿Quién eres tú?
Carlos: And in the Costa Rican version, we heard
Natalia: ¿Y usted, quién es?
Carlos: And who are you?
Natalia: Muy bien ya lo entendiste mejor. Do you understand it better now?
Carlos: Bueno sí, ya tiene más sentido. Now it makes more sense. Okay Nati, moving out of newbie lesson 3, César’s response to the question ‘¿y tú?’ was the following. Yo soy César. Soy músico. And in the Costa Rican version, we heard
Natalia: Soy Julian. Soy trovador.
Carlos: I am Giulian, I am a ‘trova’ musician.
Natalia: Right. While in the newbie lesson, Caesar is telling Amanda his name and profession. His response ‘Yo soy César. Soy músico’ he is telling Amanda that he is a musician.
Carlos: Oh I see but in our Costa Rican conversation, Giulian says he is a ‘trovador’ I mean what kind of profession is that?
Natalia: That’s ‘trova’ Carlos. The Giulian’s response is the same as Caesar. He’s just been more specific.
Carlos: Well how so?
Natalia: Well, Giulian is telling Viviana that he is a musician that plays Trova.
Carlos: Trova.
Natalia: Trova.
Carlos: Trova, I had never heard of it.
Natalia: You have heard of it Carlos. Remember that one time we went to a tiny, tiny little bar and there was this blind guy playing his guitar?
Carlos: How could I forget that? I mean that guy really got down on his guitar. I was impressed.
Natalia: Well, that guy was a ‘trovador’.
Carlos: Hmm all right, so instead of saying he is a musician, he is telling here the type of music that he plays.
Natalia: Uhoo. Exactamente.
Carlos: Well you know Viviana's response seems pretty enthusiastic ¡Mae, qué chiva! Yo soy escritora. Dude, that’s so cool, I am a writer.
Natalia: Well that makes sense. I would say Trova is poetry made music. A writer would always appreciate that.
Carlos: Interesting. Maybe I will have to check more of that out.
Natalia: You have to check it out. You will thank me when you do. Just sort of quickly we will do a recap. In newbie lesson 3, we heard
Carlos: Yo soy César. Soy músico. Right and in the Costa Rican version, we heard
Natalia: Soy Julian. Soy trovador.
Carlos: I am Giulian, I am a Trova musician. Okay we also heard that phrase ‘qué chiva’ and that sounds pretty enthusiastic.
Natalia: Qué chiva. Yeah that’s like ‘tuanis’ which we covered in Costa Rican lesson 1. It’s a very positive expression.
Carlos: And so what exactly does ‘chiva’ mean?
Natalia: Well on its own, the word ‘chiva’ refers to a female baby goat.
Carlos: So this expression is like saying, what a female goat.
Natalia: Well, without the screening, of course not Carlos. I said on its own, the word ‘chiva’ is also used to refer to a goatee.
Carlos: A goatee?
Natalia: Goatee, you know that beard thing.
Carlos: No comment ladies and gentlemen.
Natalia: You understand what I mean. When we say ‘qué chiva’ it is like saying that’s awesome or that’s really, really great or something like that, something similar.
Carlos: ¡Qué chiva!
Natalia: There you go. We say this when we think something is very great or interesting.
Carlos: Oh you mean like you feel about jewelry and dessert.
Natalia: I care about so many other things Carlos.
Carlos: But really it’s jewelry and dessert.
Natalia: No, anyways…
Carlos: All right, I am pretty sure I got it though but you know what?
Natalia: What?
Carlos: If you gave me one more example, it would be a lot easier for me to understand.
Natalia: Okay. Let’s say a friend of yours makes you a big batch of chocolate cookies with chocolate chips and chocolate everything and then he comes and knocks on your door and you see his face and you scream and you say, oh ¡qué chiva!
Carlos: And she calls me a liar ladies and gentlemen.
Natalia: I didn’t say you are a liar. I said I got my interests.
Carlos: Sweet desserts…


Natalia: Okay. This wraps up today’s lesson. Be sure to reference this lesson with newbie lesson 3.
Carlos: Okay and don’t forget to try the Spanish review in the learning center where you will find test questions, answers and comments on those same answers.
Natalia: It’s a great way to start practicing on your own.
Carlos: See you soon.
Natalia: Nos vemos pronto.

Dialogue - Costa Rican

Dialogue - Standard


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Tuesday at 6:30 pm
Pinned Comment
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Had anyone ever heard the expression "¡qué chiva!" before this lesson? Where did you hear it? What other local exclamations can we compare this to?

Tuesday at 4:06 pm
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Hola Beki!

We've changed the sentence as "the profession of male and female writers."

Thank you,


Team SpanishPod101.com

Thursday at 1:22 am
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I noticed a small mistake in the .pdf. "This form is used when we're talking about a ground of male and females writers."

What does the word, "ground" refer to?


Thursday at 9:25 am
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Hello everyone,

Sorry for the incovenient,the PDF and audio file seems to be fixed already :smile:. Thanks for letting us know.

@Oliver: Natalia's pronunciation of usted is a regional pronunciation not a gender related one. Thanks for your question! :wink:

Wednesday at 4:38 pm
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Hey, I'm a complete beginner, and I'm not sure if you guys are checking this anymore, but I was wondering why Natalia pronounces usted as "ustel" but not Carlos. Is this a regional thing, or is it a gender thing? Thanks

Thursday at 4:17 am
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The links for the basic audio and PDF are broken; can't download this lesson.

Sunday at 1:46 am
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Jan 16, 2001--I cannot download this specific lesson. That's not very cool. (Costa Rica #3, Man that's cool!)

Paul Clutterbuck
Thursday at 9:38 am
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All of the audio files and the lesson guide are missing, both from the iTunes Premium Feed and the online player.

David DeWinter
Monday at 1:45 am
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The links for the basic audio and PDF are broken. Can they be fixed?