EPISODE 4: The language war continues

Following the plan, in this session we continued the language training. As told before, the main big difference between Catalans and Madrilians is the language. In the first language session we learnt the TOP 10 words that couldn’t be missing in a conversation if we wanted to look like a real Madrilian/Catalan. After that session, we thought that ten words were not enough to make us look like locals, so we decided to elaborate another TOP10, but now with the most useful expressions and idioms. These are the ten expressions that Fernando gave me:

  1. “Me la estás liando”: you are puting me in a difficult situation. It is used when another person does something bad to you and you have to face some difficulties because of that.
  2. “Ir a escote”: to share something. Used in bars, restaurants or wherever.
  3. “Estar en cero coma”: to be done imediatelly. It is used when you want to tell someone that a concrete action will be done very fast.
  4. “Más castizo que el chotis”: when something is very traditional. It is mainly used when you want to say that something is popular.
  5. “(Tener/haber algo) a cholón”: to have something in large quantities.
  6. “A punta pala”: it means to have a lot of something.
  7. “No me ralles”: it literally means don’t bother me, don’t annoy me.
  8. “Tener mucha jeta”: to be shameless or opportunist.
  9. “Estar muy cachonda/está muy chonda”: it is used to name a girl that is beautiful.
  10. “Ser una movida”: to be something difficult or complex, specially a situation.

I gave Fernando a similar list but with Catalan expressions. I didn’t know what to expect before the meeting but, based on the previous sessions, I had a thought that Madrilian expressions would be related to make things bigger, greater or more exaggerate. And I think I confirmed it.

After reading and commenting them, we spent one hour practicing and using this expressions in different contexts in order to understand better when we can use them or when we can’t. It was interesting because, with this teaching method, we understood better the way the expressions should be used and learnt a bit more about the culture itself. Now I am more capable of speaking with the most Madrilian person because I have learnt more vocabulary and language resources. I am also better at teaching because I faced some difficulties every time I tried to translate from Catalan to English. But with practice, I overcome those difficulties and we could continue with the plan. At the end, it has been a very interesting meeting with many outcomes and a lot of fun!

I just wanted to finish this post with the following videoclip. This was a very famous Catalan band and this particular song talks about the difficulties to translate Catalan expressions into Spanish. I felt a bit like this…

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