Soundtrack of this post: “Pongamos que hablo de Madrid – Joaquín Sabina”
For this first session, Fernando came to my apartment at 9:00 ready to start with one of the most difficult topics: the language. During the whole morning we spoke about our languages in general and then we decided to write a list of the TOP 10 words that could not be missing in a conversation with a local person in other not to sound like a stranger or foreigner.due to the fact that grammar is almost common in our languages, we went straight to the vocabulary. And that was the result:
- Jeta: face.
- Piños: Teeth
- Peluco: Watch
- Chinar: To make someone angry
- Mazo: a lot
- Kelly: Home
- Tronco: Friend, confident person.
- Cerveceo (and many other words ended with –eo): to go to drink beers.
- Canteo: a good or bad surprise. Something that is incredible.
- Gallumbos: Men’s underwear.
- Th letter b is not called “b alta”, is called “be” and the letter v is not called “be baja”, is called “uve”.
- You shouldn’t write “i” as a conjunction; you must use “y”
For the Catalan words I looked for some tricky ones. Some words from Catalan are similar to the Spanish words, but there are some that might sound like Spanish words but mean a completely different thing. Is what we call: False friends. Is the biggest mistake among the non Catalan speakers. If Fernando wanted to look like a local, he had to learn this list of false friends:
- Acostar-se: it sound like “acostarse”. In Spanish “acostarse” means to go to sleep. In Catalan it means to get closer to somebody or something.
- Ampolla: it sound like “ampolla”. In Spanish “ampolla” means a rash. In Catalan it means bottle.
- Brut: it sound like “bruto”. In Spanish “bruto” means rude. In Catalan it means dirty.
- Cama: it sound like “cama”. In Spanish it means bed while in Catalan it means leg.
- Escoltar: it sounds like “escoltar”. In Spanish means to escort or guard. In Catalan it means to listen.
- Llevar-se: it sounds like “llevarse”. In Spanish it means to take something away. In Catalan it means to wake up.
- Pany: it sounds like “paño”. In Spanish it means a towel. In Catalan it means latch.
- Vaga: it sounds like “Vaga”. In Spanish it means a lazy girl. In Catalan it means a strike.
- Tasca: it sounds like “Tasca”. In Spanish it is a bar. In Catalan it means a task.
- Pujar: it is written like “Pujar”. In Spanish it means to ascend. In Catalan it means to go up.
- The graph “ny” doesn’t sound like “ni”. It sounds like “ñ”
- The letter “ç” sounds like ”ss”
- The graph “l·l” sounds like a long “l”
- The letter “j” sounds like “sh”, and not like “y”
- The graph “tx” sounds like “ch”