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Lesson Transcript

Eric: Beginner Series Season 2, Lesson 6 – Russian comparatives. I'm much better than you are.
Anna: Hello, everyone. I'm Anna and welcome back to RussianPod101.com.
Eric: [Привет] Anna.
Anna: [Привет] Eric.
Eric: With us you’ll learn to speak Russian with fun and effective lessons.
Anna: We also provide you with cultural insights.
Eric: And tips you won’t find in a textbook.
Anna: In this lesson, you will learn how to make excuses.
Eric: The conversation is between unlucky Kevin and another passenger on a train.
Anna: The speakers don’t know each other, therefore they will be speaking formal Russian.
Eric: So I’ll be playing unlucky Kevin.
Anna: And I am just a passenger.
Eric: Ok. Here we go.
Anna: [Мужчина! Вы пролили мне пиво на колени!]
Eric: [Ой, извините, пожалуйста. Я нечаянно]
Anna: [Надо быть внимательнее! Посмотрите на мою юбку!]
Eric: Once again, slowly.
Anna: Еще раз, медленнее.
Anna: [Мужчина! Вы пролили мне пиво на колени!]
Eric: [Ой, извините, пожалуйста. Я нечаянно]
Anna: [Надо быть внимательнее! Посмотрите на мою юбку!]
Eric: One time, natural native speed with translation.
Anna: Еще раз, с переводом.
Anna: [Мужчина! Вы пролили мне пиво на колени!]
Eric: Hey, man, you spilled your beer on my lap.
Anna: [Ой, извините, пожалуйста. Я нечаянно]
Eric: Oh, I'm sorry, it was an accident.
Anna: [Надо быть внимательнее! Посмотрите на мою юбку!]
Eric: You should be more careful. Look at my skirt!
Eric: Ok, Anna, so now we see why Kevin is called unlucky.
Anna: Yeah.
Eric: He’s not having luck last few lessons here. Do you think this was an accident? Did Levin do this [нечаянно], not on purpose?
Anna: Eric, what do you mean? Are you asking me whether Kevin has spilled his beer on girl’s lap on purpose?
Eric: Well, I was just asking. Maybe he was trying to attract that girl’s attention. It’s not a great way to attract a girl’s attention is to pour beer on them.
Anna: I don’t think this works actually. I'm sure you would never use this technique, Eric, would you?
Eric: Anna, this is not my preferred technique. I’ve never used this before. Anna, what techniques do you use?
Anna: You know, Eric, I use subtle techniques.
Eric: So you’ve been flirting with me this whole time then.
Anna: Ok, tell me about my techniques then.
Eric: Ok, well, maybe another lesson, eh?
Anna: What’s your technique, Eric?
Eric: I think it’s vocabulary time is what I think.
Anna: Ok.
Eric: Our first word is…
Anna: [мужчина]
Eric: Man.
Anna: [мужчина]
Eric: Next.
Anna: [пролить]
Eric: To spill.
Anna: [пролить]
Eric: Next.
Anna: [пиво]
Eric: Beer.
Anna: [пиво]
Eric: Next.
Anna: [колени]
Eric: Knees, lap.
Anna: [колени]
Eric: Next.
Anna: [нечаянно]
Eric: By accident, unintentionally.
Anna: [нечаянно]
Eric: Next.
Anna: [внимательный]
Eric: Careful, attentive.
Anna: [внимательный]
Eric: Next.
Anna: [посмотреть]
Eric: To look.
Anna: [посмотреть]
Eric: Next.
Anna: [юбка]
Eric: A skirt.
Anna: [юбка]
Eric: Ok, let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Anna: The first word we’ll look at is [мужчина].
Eric: Which means “man”, not to be confused, which I did, with [машина].
Anna: Oh, that’s right, Eric.
Eric: Which is car. [Мужчина] and [машина].
Anna: Yeah.
Eric: So [будьте внимательны], be careful. So, Anna, let’s give a sentence with both. “The man is driving a car.”
Anna: [Мужчина ведет машину.]
Eric: This is fun.
Anna: Yeah?
Eric: Ok. So, Anna, it ends in an A so is this a feminine noun?
Anna: No, Eric, it’s a masculine noun.
Eric: So how would you say “a nice man”?
Anna: [хороший мужчина]
Eric: [хороший]. So we use masculine ending of the adjective.
Anna: Yes, of course.
Eric: Not [хорошая мужчина].
Anna: No, Eric.
Eric: Ok. Just wanted to make that clear for our listeners. So, in our dialogue, the woman uses the word [мужчина] to address Kevin, is that rude?
Anna: No, it’s not rude. In Russian, we often use words like [мужчина, женщина] woman or [девушка] and girl to address someone we don’t know.
Eric: So I remember when I was in Russia, sometimes they would say [молодой человек].
Anna: Right.
Eric: Young person, young man.
Anna: Young man.
Eric: And it wasn’t rude.
Anna: No, it’s just a common way to address people.
Eric: So if I said [ девушка, извините!] from our newbie series, we used this as “waitress”, [девушка]. Ok, right. I’ve also heard someone address an old lady by saying [бабушка], which is “grandmother”, right?
Anna: Yes, but we can also use [бабушка] and [дедушка], which means grandfather, to talk about an elderly person you don’t know.
Eric: So you can say [бабушка] if you’re talking to an older lady and they won’t hit you with their handbag?
Anna: No, no, but if they’re really old, maybe above 70…
Eric: Really old… If you call someone [бабушка] and they’re not [бабушка].
Anna: Yeah. It’s not polite to address not really old women by saying [бабушка].
Eric: So be careful with that one. You might want to just use [извините].
Anna: Or [женщина].
Eric: Ok, our next word is…
Anna: [пролить], which means “to spill”.
Eric: Can I say [я пролил соль]?
Anna: I’m afraid not. [Пролить] is only used for liquids, therefore if you need to say “I’ve spilled the salt”, you’ll say [Я просыпал соль].
Eric: [я просыпал]
Anna: [соль]
Eric: [соль]. Ok. But I can say [Я пролил кофе].
Anna: Yes, “I spilled the coffee”. Coffee is a liquid so we can use [пролить].
Eric: Got it. Alright, our next word is [колени]. I thought [колени] was the word for “knees”. Can [колени] also be used for “lap”?
Anna: Yes, [колени] can also mean “lap”.
Eric: Ok, now let’s look at the grammar for this lesson.
Anna: Ok, in our dialogue, the woman says [надо быть внимательнее].
Eric: “You need to be careful”, right?
Anna: Almost. Actually “careful” is [внимательный] and [внимательнее] means “more careful”. It’s a comparative.
Eric: So do all comparatives end in [ее], Anna?
Anna: Yeah, yeah, most of them.
Eric: Most of them. But that’s a good way to remember actually, right?
Anna: Let’s take [быстрый] “fast” as an example. To make a comparison, “faster”, you just drop the ending [ый] and add [ее] instead. Eric, do you want to try.
Eric: Yeah, yeah. Ok, we’ve lost the magic on [ее].
Anna: Yeah. So let’s try. I’ll give you an adjective and you make a comparative.
Eric: Okey dokey.
Anna: [длинный]
Eric: Which means “long”.
Anna: And comparative is…
Eric: [длиннее]
Anna: That’s right, Eric. See how easy it is?
Eric: Ok. “Longer”, so let’s try another one.
Anna: What about [опасный]?
Eric: “Dangerous”. More dangerous, ok. [опаснее]
Anna: So see? It’s an easy rule.
Eric: So where is the stress? Even though it’s [ее], it’s lost because the stress is on a different syllable, right?
Anna: Yes, so we pronounce as [апаснее].
Eric: [апаснее]
Anna: [апаснее]
Eric: Ok, so we still have the [ее] but the accent is one the A. Ok, so “more dangerous” is, one more time?
Anna: [опаснее]
Eric: [опаснее]. Ok, great. I suppose there are some exceptions, as usual.
Anna: You suppose right. I’ll just give you a few of them. [большой]
Eric: Big.
Anna: [больше]
Eric: Bigger.
Anna: [хороший]
Eric: Good.
Anna: [лучше]
Eric: Better.
Anna: [плохой]
Eric: Bad.
Anna: [хуже]
Eric: Worse.
Anna: [высокий]
Eric: Tall.
Anna: [выше]
Eric: “Taller” or “higher”. Ok, so how would you say “Serghei is taller than Ivan”?
Anna: [Сергей выше, чем Иван]
Eric: And [чем] means “than” in this case, right?
Anna: Yes.
Eric: Ok. One more time? Let’s break it down.
Anna: [Сергей]
Eric: Serghei.
Anna: [выше]
Eric: Taller.
Anna: [чем]
Eric: Than.
Anna: [Иван]
Eric: “Ivan”. “Serghei taller than Ivan” or “Serghei is taller than Ivan”. Pretty simple.
Anna: Yeah.
Eric: Ok, great. And that will do it for today’s lesson. Premium members, don’t forget to subscribe to the Premium Feed, it’s one of our most powerful web 2.0 features todays.
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Eric: Audio files, PDFs, everything we have.
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Anna: Get the Sample Feed at RussianPod101.com.
Eric: Ok, [спасибо], Anna.
Anna: [Спасибо], Eric. [Спасибо, что были с нами сегодня. До следующих встреч!]
Eric: And thanks for being with us this lesson. See you next time.


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Tuesday at 6:30 pm
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The woman from the dialogue is really annoyed with Kevin! Has a stranger ever been annoyed with you? Что вы сделали? Вы извинились? Chto vy sdelali? Vy izvinilis'?

Monday at 6:38 pm
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Hello Arno,

You are welcome!


Team RussianPod101.com

Wednesday at 3:47 am
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Hi Elena,

yes, that was my question, whether something like "(сделал это)" is just omitted.

I couldn't find any other explanation for "Я" + adverb as a complete sentence.

Thanks a lot for your answer and best regards!

Saturday at 7:04 pm
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Hello Arno,

Not sure if I understood your question correctly...

"нечаянно" by itself is an adverb.

"Я нечаянно!" means "Я нечаянно (сделал это)".

Please let me know if you need any help. 😄


Team RussianPod101.com

Friday at 4:56 am
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I've got one question about "Я нечаянно!":

Is this kind of a shortened sentence like "Я нечаянно .... делал это." ?

Or how come that there is the adverb without any verb?

(In sentences like "Мне холодно" there also is the adverb solo, but with the dative case ("To me it's cold") )

Can you help me with this one?

Thanks and best regards!

Monday at 8:26 pm
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Hi Shelby,

On behalf of Elena, you're welcome. :)

Feel free to let us know if you have any further questions.



Team RussianPod101.com

Monday at 2:15 am
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Ah OK, thank you!

Monday at 1:51 am
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Hello Shelby,

In the sentence "Вы пролили мне пиво на колени!" the word "мне" literally means "to me". Literally this sentence means "You've spilled beer to me on my knees".


Team RusianPod101.com

Wednesday at 1:22 pm
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I am a little confused about this sentence.

Вы пролили мне пиво на колени!

It seems like "my beer" for "мне пиво", like this sentence is saying " You spilled my beer on my lap"

Why is it 'мне" and not "your"?

Thank you, these lessons are so much better than Rosetta stone could ever hope to be ??

Friday at 5:54 pm
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Hi Peters,

Thank you very much!

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Tuesday at 9:35 am
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Oh My God, Am Upgrading account ASAP. I just hope this works for me because I live in Ukraine and when people get to speak Russian Around me. They tend to speak to fast.