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Lesson Transcript

Natalia: Muy buenos días, me llamo Natalia.
Carlos: What’s going on, I am Carlos.
Natalia: Costa Rican Spanish series, lesson 4.
Carlos: For real. How is life treating you guys? I am Carlos and I am here with Natalia. Natie ¿cómo va todo? Pura vida…
Natalia: Mae tuanis.
Carlos: Great to be back here with you for another lesson.
Natalia: Yeah that’s really great to see SpanishPod101’s stretching out and including more regional forms of Spanish.
Carlos: And so today, we’ve got the fourth lesson of the Costa Rican series.
Natalia: And that’s right. And this is the only place where you get to learn about the Spanish spoken specifically in Costa Rica.
Carlos: And thanks to Natie, we get a little more specifications about the local flavor that Costa Rican Spanish is soon to be famous for.
Natalia: Thank you Carlos.
Carlos: Hey Natie, you know what’s coming right at you?
Natalia: What?
Carlos: It’s another lesson from SpanishPod101.com.
Natalia: Bienvenidos a todos. It’s time for #4.
Carlos: And so Natie, what’s today’s conversation all about?
Natalia: Well Lisa and Andre are at a party in San Pedro which is in San Jose. Basically, they are talking about where everybody is from.
Carlos: It sounds like the common conversation that you are likely to have hah?
Natalia: Yeah this one is very common, es muy cotidiana.
Carlos: Just the kind I like to hear. So remember that today’s Costa Rican conversation is based on newbie lesson 4, Who Are You All which you can pick up at spanishpod101.com
Natalia: You know what else we are going to study today Carlos?
Carlos: What’s that Natie?
Natalia: The expression ‘al chile’.
Carlos: Al chile. What does that mean?
Natalia: Well, you have to wait.
Carlos: Well I guess I will, won’t I? Well before we get into the conversation, I just want to encourage everyone to check out the line by line audio transcripts for this lesson which you can get in the learning center at spanishpod101.com
Natalia: All right. Now let’s get into today’s conversation.
Carlos: So to get the ball rolling, let’s think back to newbie lesson 4. There we heard the following conversation.
LUISA: ¿Quiénes son ustedes?
ANTONIO: Nosotros somos amigos de Gabriel.
LUISA: ¿De dónde son ustedes?
ANTONIO: Nosotros somos de Nueva York.
LUISA: ¡La gran manzana!
Carlos: This time with the translation.
Carlos: Ahora incluiremos la traducción.
LUISA: ¿Quiénes son ustedes? Who are you all?
ANTONIO: Nosotros somos amigos de Gabriel. We are friends of Gabriel.
LUISA: ¿De dónde son ustedes? Where are you from?
ANTONIO: Nosotros somos de Nueva York. We are from New York.
LUISA: ¡La gran manzana! The big apple.
Carlos: So this conversation is pretty much standard. I mean, it will be understood wherever you are in the Spanish speaking world.
Natalia: But now let’s hear what this might sound like if you are right here in Costa Rica.
Natalia: Y ustedes, ¿quiénes son?
Carlos: Somos compas de Alejandro.
Natalia: ¿Y de dónde son, maes?
Carlos: Somos de Limón.
Natalia: ¿Al chile?
Carlos: Once again slowly.
Carlos: Una vez más, esta vez lentamente.
Natalia: Y ustedes, ¿quiénes son?
Carlos: Somos compas de Alejandro.
Natalia: ¿Y de dónde son, maes?
Carlos: Somos de Limón.
Natalia: ¿Al chile?
Carlos: Ah New York! Give me a second Natie, I got to reminisce. The subway….
Natalia: Ai señor…
Carlos: The Bronx Manhattan.
Natalia: Carlos! Okay Carlos, do you see how the conversations are different?
Carlos: Well I mean I see some new words that we didn’t see in the newbie lesson. Natie, I mean where do you think we should start out our explanation.
Natalia: I think we should start out by looking at all these expressions where friends of Gabriel was rendering the Costa Rican version.
Carlos: Alright that sounds like a plan. Would you repeat that for us so we know exactly where we were in the conversation.
Natalia: Somos compas de Alejandro.
Carlos: We are Alejandro’s buddies. Now let’s compare this to what we heard in the newbie conversation. There we heard.
Carlos: Nosotros somos amigos de Gabriel.
Carlos: Natie, can we assume that ‘compas’ means something like friends?
Natalia: That’s a good observation Carlos. See, ‘compa’ is another word for friend. You could hear somebody say like ‘mi compa Pedro’ and we would translate it as my friend Pedro or my buddy Pedro or something like that.
Carlos: Okay but Natie, one question.
Natalia: Yes.
Carlos: Isn’t the word ‘compa’ feminine. I mean it ends with an A.
Natalia: Well, you are thinking in the right direction Carlos but not quite. Even though the word compa ends with an A, we can use it to refer to a female or a male.
Carlos: I see. So this one doesn’t follow the normal rules of gender then?
Natalia: Not this time. There is other words like this in Spanish too.
Carlos: Well then, how about an example?
Natalia: Well, think of the word ‘día’. This one ends with an A but also is a masculine.
Carlos: Right, right and that’s why we say ‘buenos días’ where ‘buenos’ is masculine right?
Natalia: You got it. Back to the example. If we considered that Andrea is asking about more than one person, we see that he always responds with ‘compas’, compas with an s at the end making it plural.
Carlos: Okay then, when else will we hear the word ‘compas’ used?
Natalia: Well let’s say you are in a bar and you probably hear ‘Ey compa, paséme ese trago.’
Carlos: All right wait, so with this example, is it safe to say, this is a very informal expression.
Natalia: Yes it is.
Carlos: All right, so to recap, the standard way to say we are friends of Gabriel
Carlos: Nosotros somos amigos de Gabriel.
Carlos: And in the Costa Rican version we heard
Natalia: Somos compas de Alejandro.
Carlos: We are Alejandro’s buddies. That’s a very cool word to learn Natie. Now I just want to look at one more comparison here. In order to say we are from New York, Antonio says
Carlos: Nosotros somos de Nueva York.
Carlos: Yet in the Costa Rican version, we heard
Natalia: Somos de Limón.
Carlos: We are from Limon. Now aside from differences in name of the cities, I noticed that the Costa Rican version is shorter. What’s about that?
Natalia: Well, in the Costa Rican version, we don’t include the personal pronoun “Nosotros”.
Carlos: And why is that?
Natalia: Because it is not necessary.
Carlos: Well, this personal pronoun “nosotros” means we right?
Natalia: Yep.
Carlos: Wait! So if we throw that out the window, aren’t we saying something like are from Limon. I mean where is the subject?
Natalia: Well Carlos, you are thinking in English. Remember that the ending of the verb tell us who the subject is.
Carlos: The verb ending?
Natalia: Right. So here look at the verb “somos”.
Carlos: “somos”
Natalia: Right. See how it ends with mos.
Carlos: Yeah I see that.
Natalia: Well any time a verb in Spanish ends with this mos, it always, always, always refers to we as a subject.
Carlos: Well that’s quite a rule.
Natalia: Uhoo so that’s an easy way to remember it.
Carlos: Okay so Natie, when are personal pronouns used?
Natalia: Bueno, basicamente para aclarar el sujeto. basically to clarify the subject.
Carlos: Ah right, right, okay so if the subject is ambiguous, then we need to include the personal pronoun.
Natalia: Así es. Also we can use the personal pronouns to add emphasis to the subject.
Carlos: Okay, okay I think I got it. So I can say “Eres Natalia.” Natalia which means you are Natalia or to add more emphasis, I can say “Tú eres Natalia.” which is like saying, so you are Natalia.
Natalia: That’s not bad. You can also say, you are an angel Natalia. Many other things. Usted es un ángel Natalia.
Carlos: You hear this, all right. My pronunciation is good though?
Natalia: It could be better.
Carlos: Okay well to go over it once more, the standard way to say we are from New York is [*] and in the Costa Rican version, we heard
Natalia: Nosotros somos de Nueva York.
Carlos: We are from Limon.
Natalia: Somos de Limón. Oye, Carlso. Now we can talk about that expression I told you “al chile”.
Carlos: Finally, all this time I have been wondering what that means.
Natalia: It wasn’t that long you have to wait. Well, now you get to find out.
Carlos: Well Natie, where did this come up in the conversation?
Natalia: When Louise tells Andre that he and his friend are from Limon. She responds by saying “Al chile.”
Carlos: Mmm chile... Wait, wait! Now I could be wrong but isn’t “chile” the Spanish word for Pepper I mean like a Chili Pepper.
Natalia: Claro Carlos, you are right. “Al chile” is funny if you do a literal translation. It does mean pepper.
Carlos: Okay so then this image is like almost a play on the expression, spicy.
Natalia: Well, if you speak to someone “al chile” to speak to them frankly, “francamente”.
Carlos: Well no way, in the conversation, it’s used as a question. I mean so is Andrea asking frankly?
Natalia: No Carlos, she is not. When we use the expression “al chile” as a question, it is like asking “¿De verdad?” really or seriously.
Carlos: Alright. So maybe we could translate it as for real or if we really want to be even more informal, we could say word.
Natalia: Oh my god!
Carlos: What?
Natalia: You are on your New York slang.
Carlos: I love it. I can’t help it.
Natalia: You will get over it one day eventually, hopefully.
Carlos: She never leaves me alone about it audience. I mean seriously that hurts Natie. It is a pain in my heart.
Natalia: Well, it’s probably just indigestion. You should have some herbal tea.
Carlos: You know what, I know when I am fighting a losing battle. This is as far as we will go.
Natalia: To further compare what we’ve covered here, check our newbie lesson 4 and be sure to quiz yourself on grammar and vocabulary in the learning center at spanishpod101.com


Carlos: Also ask us a question in the forum or leave us a comment. See you soon.
Natalia: Chao.

Dialogue - Costa Rican

Dialogue - Standard


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Tuesday at 6:30 pm
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Had anyone ever heard the word "compa" before? How about "compadre"? What are some other informal ways of referring to friends? hint... hint... If you check out Peruvian Lesson 4 and Iberian Lesson 4, you'll find some of these words...

Tuesday at 11:50 am
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Hola Bjorn,

Thank you for your comment. ?

Yes, it is. But in this case you can say "el compa" for "el compañero".

Sigamos practicando.



Team SpanishPod101.com

Bjorn Johnson
Sunday at 1:17 am
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Si tengo razón, compa es breve para compañero, y tiene sentido que se termina en "o". Es equal que dice uno,"LA moto", porque es corto para "la motocicleta". ¿Verdad?

Sunday at 6:44 am
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From the expanded vocab:

básicamente basically

Al final, hay dos opciones.

"In the end, there are two options."

How is this an example of basicamente?