This episode is the first of my new q&a series Con razón. sPod listeners will recognize the format; it’s basically a continuation of the old Pa’ que sepas show. My cohost is the lovely Nahyeli.
Thanks as always to the generous support of Tito of thsounds.com, who graciously provides the production music.
In this episode: What’s the proper response when someone wishes you a good weekend? How can you magnify an adjective? What’s the difference between “el mejor” and “lo mejor?” What are some colloquial ways to ask someone how they’re doing? All that, plus a quick reference guide for “por” and “para.”
Special thanks to Roddy Jo, Caz, Holly, Russell, Rachael, Grover, Blanca, Jill, Sam, Stevestrv, Russito, Everett, Jenny, and Mónica who all wrote questions. If we didn’t get to your question this time, don’t worry, you might hear them in a future show.
Just to be clear, the questions Nahyeli and I choose to answer are the ones where the answer will (hopefully) help people in their Spanish language learning. Now, some of you all are asking questions even though you know the answers… I get questions from a professor of Spanish linguistics, from native speakers, and from other experts in the field… and if I don’t get to them, it’s because I know you know the answers, and you’re just trying to see if we have the chops to answer them. My answer: yes, we have the chops, but using podcast time to answer the “challenge” questions probably won’t help anyone learn. So sorry, we’re not answering “challenge” questions from the experts… this podcast is for the learners. On the other hand, I absolutely do appreciate when you experts have something to add, clarify, or–God forbid–correct… so please do by all means stick around and participate!
Finally, I just want to remind some people that some questions are outside the scope of the format of this podcast. For example:
Please explain the subjunctive mood.
Haha, it takes WEEKS of study in a classroom to just get through the subjunctive mood… if not months. I’m pretty sure that I can’t even begin to address that in a 15 minute Q & A podcast.
What’s the difference between ser and estar?
Ok, in a 15 minute Q & A podcast, I can give you some tricks on how to conceptualize the difference, or some memory tricks, or even how to approach the issue (like I did in this episode’s por and para segment) but honestly, my office mate in graduate school wrote her doctoral dissertation on the difference between ser and estar.
Someday, I might dream up a mini-series of podcasts for big topics like those, but that would be a lot of work for topics for which people have a bad taste in their mouth even before they start. Honestly, would you listen to a mini-series on the subjunctive? Can you see yourself going “Oh boy, I just can’t wait for episode nine of “ser” vs. “estar!””
Well, maybe some of you would enjoy that, what do I know. In any case, let me know what you think of this one, and we’ll go from there.