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Lesson Transcript

INTRODUCTION
Oxana: [Привет всем!]
Eddie: Hello. Eddie here. I'm joined in the studio by…
Oxana: Hello, everyone. I'm Oxanna. Welcome back to our ‘making Russia’s acquaintance’ series. Now, in the last lesson you may recall that we all got to know each other a little better.
Eddie: Yeah, so now here’s your pop quiz. Were you listening. [Оксана, ты русская?]
Oxana: I'm not Russian, I'm Ukrainian. Eddie [ты англичанин]?
Eddie: Yes, I'm English. We also learned the Russian word for “from”.
Oxana: [из]
Eddie: And we got the idea how to match genders with the genitive case in Russian.
Oxana: Ok, so this is a long plane ride, Eddie. We’re still on the plane.
Eddie: And our ‘get to know you’ chat in Russian continues.
Oxana: We will join our passengers, Eleana from Russia and John from America.
Eddie: So what better thing could we teach you than the most famous conversation topic in the world?
Oxana: What could it be?
Eddie: The weather, of course. It crosses all cultural divides.
Oxana: We can never underestimate the power of a conversation about the weather.
Eddie: Yes, start with the small talk. We’ll teach you rocket science later.
Oxana: Plus, we will learn a couple more little small talk tips in this dialogue.
Eddie: So let’s listen in.
DIALOGUE
Елена: Мичиган, как сейчас в Мичигане, не холодно?
Elena: Michigan, kak seichas v Michigane, ne holodno?
Джон: Нет, нормально. Я из Детройта, а в Детройте почти как в Москве. А как погода в Киеве?
John: Net, normal’no. Ya iz Detroita, a v Detroite pochti kak v Moskve. A kak pogoda v Kieve?
Елена: В Киеве тепло. Вы были в Киеве?
Elena: V Kieve teplo. Vy byli v Kieve?
Джон: Нет, но хочу поехать как-нибудь.
John: Nen, no hochu poehat’ kak-nibud’
Елена: А кем вы работаете?
Elena: A kem vy rabotaete?
Джон: Я...как это сказать по-русски? lawyer
John: Ya...kak eto skazat’ po-russki? lawyer
Елена А, вы юрист.
Elena: A, vy yurist?
Джон: Да. Вы говорите по-английски?
John: Da. Vy govorite po-angliyski?
Елена: Немного.
Elena: Nemnogo.
--
Eddie: One time, slowly.
Oxana: Еще раз, медленнее.
Елена: Мичиган, как сейчас в Мичигане, не холодно?
Elena: Michigan, kak seichas v Michigane, ne holodno?
Джон: Нет, нормально. Я из Детройта, а в Детройте почти как в Москве. А как погода в Киеве?
John: Net, normal’no. Ya iz Detroita, a v Detroite pochti kak v Moskve. A kak pogoda v Kieve?
Елена: В Киеве тепло. Вы были в Киеве?
Elena: V Kieve teplo. Vy byli v Kieve?
Джон: Нет, но хочу поехать как-нибудь.
John: Nen, no hochu poehat’ kak-nibud’
Елена: А кем вы работаете?
Elena: A kem vy rabotaete?
Джон: Я...как это сказать по-русски? lawyer
John: Ya...kak eto skazat’ po-russki? lawyer
Елена А, вы юрист.
Elena: A, vy yurist?
Джон: Да. Вы говорите по-английски?
John: Da. Vy govorite po-angliyski?
Елена: Немного.
Elena: Nemnogo.
Eddie: Once again at natural speed with the translation.
Oxana: Еще раз с переводом.
Oxana: Мичиган, как сейчас в Мичигане, не холодно?
Eddie: Michigan, what’s it like in Michigan now? Not cold?
Oxana: Нет, нормально. Я из Детройта, а в Детройте почти как в Москве. А как погода в Киеве?
Eddie: No, it’s ok there. I'm from Detroit and it’s almost like in Moscow there. How about the weather in Kiev?
Oxana: В Киеве тепло. Вы были в Киеве?
Eddie: It’s warm in Kiev. Have you been to Kiev?
Oxana: Нет, но хочу поехать как-нибудь.
Eddie: No, but I want to go sometime.
Oxana: А кем вы работаете?
Eddie: So what do you do?
Oxana: Я...как это сказать по-русски? lawyer
Eddie:I’m… how should I say in Russian? A lawyer.
Oxana: А, вы юрист.
Eddie: You’re a lawyer.
Oxana: Да. Вы говорите по-английски?
Eddie: Yes, do you speak English.
Oxana: Немного.
Eddie: Just a little.
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
Oxana: I think this dialogue is very realistic.
Eddie: Yes, I think you’ll have this conversation about 2,000 times in Russian before you’re done.
Oxana: Especially the “Can you speak English” part.
Eddie: Yes, one cool thing is that most Russian people will be very patient and enjoy a conversation with you in Russian.
Oxana: Yeah. Most Russian people love to talk with foreigners. Foreigners who speak Russian are real novelty to them.
Eddie: And they’ll let you struggle through and you’ll suddenly find out that their English is good, about a million times better than your Russian, but they’ve just been being very kind and patient hearing you out. Let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
VOCAB LIST
Eddie: The first word is…
Oxana: [сейчас]
Eddie: Now.
Oxana: [сейчас]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [в]
Eddie: In.
Oxana: [в]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [не]
Eddie: Not.
Oxana: [не]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [холодно]
Eddie: Cold.
Oxana: [холодно]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [нормально]
Eddie: Normal, ok.
Oxana: [нормально]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [почти]
Eddie: Almost.
Oxana: [почти]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [тепло]
Eddie: Warm.
Oxana: [тепло]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [был, была, было, были]
Eddie: “Was, were, have been” - masculine, feminine, neutral, plural or polite.
Oxana: [был, была, было, были]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [но]
Eddie: But.
Oxana: [но]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [хочу]
Eddie: “Want” - first person.
Oxana: [хочу]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [поехать]
Eddie: “To go” by transport.
Oxana: [поехать]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [как-нибудь]
Eddie:“Sometime” or “somehow”.
Oxana: [как-нибудь]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [кем]
M1: As whom, by whom.
Oxana: [кем]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [сказать]
Eddie: To say.
Oxana: [сказать]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [по-русски]
Eddie:In Russian.
Oxana: [по-русски]
Eddie:Next.
Oxana: [юрист]
Eddie: Lawyer.
Oxana: [юрист]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [говорите]
Eddie: “To speak” - plural or polite form.
Oxana: [говорите]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [по-английски]
Eddie: In English.
Oxana: [по-английски]
Eddie: Next.
Oxana: [немного]
Eddie: A little.
Oxana: [немного]
VOCAB AND PHRASE USAGE
Eddie: Let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Oxana: The first phrase we’ll look at is [Как сейчас в Мичигане?].
Eddie: “How is it in Michigan now?” You’re familiar with the word [как], “how”, and you know that we don’t need auxiliary words like “to be” to build a sentence in Russian. All you have to do is take the word [как] and add the place to it.
Oxana: [Как в Мичигане?]
Eddie: What you do need to be careful about is the agreement between the gender and the case of the noun. In our sentence, we put Michigan into the prepositional case which is responsible for locations and situations. In other words, every time you have “in” or “at” preceding it. We’ll give a more detailed explanation later but now let’s listen to some examples.
Oxana: [В Нью-Йорке]
Eddie: In New York.
Oxana: [В Калифорнии]
Eddie: In California.
Oxana: [В Чикаго]
Eddie: “In Chicago.” We also have the word “now” in our sentence which due to the flexibility of Russian word order, we can put pretty much anywhere.
Oxana: [Как в Мичигане сейчас?]
Eddie: How is it in Michigan now?
Oxana: Or [Сейчас как в Мичигане?]. Or [В Мичигане сейчас как?].
Eddie: You can play with words the way you like. The sense of the sentence won’t change. Next phrase we have is…
Oxana: [Не холодно.]
Eddie: “Not cold”. You probably wonder why not just ask “Is it cold”. Tell us, Axana, why did Ileana go the extra mile here?
Eddie: There is nothing wrong with just asking [холодно?] but [не] here kind of softens the question, shows that Ileana is not really sure about the weather in Michigan but has a guess that it might be cold there. In the same way, we can ask [ты не устал?].
Eddie: Are you not tired?
Oxana: [Ты не замёрз?]
Eddie: Are you not cold?
Oxana: Kind of even hoping for a negative answer. It’s usually used with the words that have negative connotation.
Eddie:Ok. And then John answers…
Oxana: [Нет, нормально]
Eddie: Which means “No, it’s ok”. [нормально] is a very popular word in Russian and it’s used to answer all sorts of questions when you have to balance your answer between good and bad. [нормально] is rather more good than bad, but we can translate it just as “normal, average, ok” or “not bad”, like in this short dialogue.
Oxana:[Как дела, Эдди?]
Eddie: [Нормально] which is “How are you, Eddie?” “I’m ok.” [А как ты], Oxanna?
Oxana:[Я нормально, спасибо.]
Eddie:Great. Next we have the phrase that we just learned in the previous lesson which is…
Oxana: [Я из Детройта.]
Eddie: “I'm from Detroit.” And then we have a very well-known conjunction, [а] which means “and” and helps up connect two parts of the sentence. Then we have the phrase…
Oxana: [В Детройте почто как в Москве.]
Eddie: Which literally means “In Detroit almost how in Moscow”. If we drop “almost”, we’ll have a very simple sentence construction.
Oxana: [В Детройте как в Москве]
Eddie: “In Detroit how in Moscow” or, in proper English, “It’s like Moscow in Detroit.” All you have to do is say a place, then “how”, then a place again and you’ll get a comparison sentence. Let’s try it with people.
Oxana: [Я как ты, Эдди.]
Eddie: She just says she agrees to anything I say or do and will do the same. This phrase is commonly used in a situation where you get an offer to go somewhere or to do something, and you’re being reluctant to decide. Or just being totally submissive, you can just say [Я как ты] “Me how you” and it will mean you totally rely on the choice or the decision of your companion. Next word we don’t know is…
Oxana: [Погода]
Eddie: “Weather”. Simple noun. Let’s use it in a sentence.
Oxana: [А как погода в Киеве?]
Eddie: So first we have the conjunction [а] which helps us to switch the topic from Detroit to Kiev. Then [как], “how”. Then without any English, or other auxiliary verb, we just add the place right away.
Oxana: [В Киеве?]
Eddie: “In Kiev”. So, Oxanna, how’s the weather in Kiev now?
Oxana: At the moment it’s quite warm. The climate in Ukraine is quite good. Not too humid, not too hot. Everything is green around, especially in summer. Sorry, I love talking about Kiev. So, warm, right? [В Киеве тепло]
M1: Literally, “in Kiev warm”. A place in the prepositional case plus the adverb.
Oxana: [В Москве холодно]
M1: It’s cold in Moscow.
Oxana: [В Мельбурне тепло.]
M1: “It’s warm in Melbourne.” The next unknown word we have is…
Oxana: [были]
Eddie: Which is past tense of “to be”. Here it’s used in the plural because this is how we speak when we want to be polite in Russian, in plurals. How does it vary according to gender, Oxanna?
Oxana: The first one [был]…
Eddie: “Was, have been” - masculine form.
Oxana: And the examples, [Я бал, он был].
Eddie: “I was” or “he was”.
Oxana: The next one is [Была].
Eddie: The feminine form.
Oxana: [Я была, она была.]
Eddie: “I was” or “she was”.
Oxana: And the last one, [Было].
Eddie: The neutral form.
Oxana: [Оно было]
Eddie: “It was.” The thing worth mentioning is that the English “was” and “have been” sound the same in Russian because Russian has only one kind of past tense.
Oxana: Eddie, [ты был в Киеве]?
Eddie: No, but I'm going there some day.
Oxana: Eddie wanted to say [нет, но хочу поехть кк-нибудь].
Eddie: Why do you think I wanted to say that in Russian?
Oxana: Because if you don’t, you’ll make our presence useless here. But ok, I say it for you. Can you at least translate it?
Eddie: Ok, ok. So “No, but I want to go sometime.” We have a couple of new words here. First of all…
Oxana: [но]
M1: Which means “but” and is used in the same way as in English. Next is…
Oxana: [хочу]
M1: “Want”, which due to its grammatical ending means “I want”. That’s why we omit “I” in the sentence. The dictionary form of the verb “to want” is…
Oxana: [хотеть]
M1: Then we have…
Oxana: [поехать]
M1: “To go”. If you want to say that you want to go somewhere on foot or to walk somewhere, you should say….
Oxana: [Пойти]
Eddie: But [поехать] only means to go by rail or road transportation. Then we have an interesting and very colloquial word.
Oxana: [как-нибидь]
Eddie: The main meaning of which is “somehow”, but in our case it has a broader meaning of “somehow, in some way and sometime”. Seems like the idea of visiting Ukraine never really crossed John’s mind or even if it did, he’s never thought of it as something real that may happen in the near future. So instead of saying “I’ve never been to Ukraine and it’s not in my list of priorities for the near future”, he just says “sometime, somehow, when I'm old and have nothing else to do, I’ll go to Ukraine.”
Oxana: You’re saying it like it’s his last option in case life gets really miserable.
Eddie: Of course not. [как-нибудь] is “cool” and absolutely not negative, it just politely explains that this trip to Eastern Europe doesn’t include Ukraine, but it might happen sometime in the future. At least he wants it to happen.
Oxana: Ok.
Eddie: Well, Eleana wants to get to know John better so she asks a natural question, “What do you do?”
Oxana: [А кем вы работаете?]
Eddie: So we have [a] again, and in this case it helps us to change the topic. The next word is a little more complicated.
Oxana: [кем]
Eddie: Which literally means “as who” but in fact it’s just the word [кто], “who”, put into the instrumental case. All these Russian cases are just different endings instead of different prepositions. So in Russian we don’t have “as” but we can change [кто] in [кем]. Then we have another unknown word…
Oxana: [работаете]
Eddie: Means “work” but it’s said in the form of the second person. It comes from the verb…
Oxana: [работать]
Eddie: “To work”. And all together this sentence will sound like “and as who you work?” And John is desperately trying to remember all the words he knows in Russian, but he doesn’t know his own profession. And here’s the phrase that makes the silence less awkward.
Oxana: [Как это сказать по-русски?]
Eddie: Literally “How to say this in Russian?” Why am I even explaining this now? Didn’t you learn this in the third lesson of Basic Boot Camp? Anyway, you know the word “to say” in Russian.
Oxana: [сказать по-русски]
Eddie: Now we just add [как это], “how this”, and get a phrase that most foreigners use when they are at loss for words and hope for your understanding and help. “How should I say it in Russian?”
Oxana: [Я...как это сказать по-русски.]
Eddie: And then Elena helps John out and translated “lawyer” for him.
Oxana: [юрист]
Eddie: And being happy about having understood John, Elena exclaims…
Oxana: [юрист]
Eddie: Another use of the little [а], which means “oh” here and expresses understanding or even excitement. Remember the word order in Russian, it’s only defined by the intonation. And if Ileana said it in this manner…
Oxana: [Вы юрист?]
Eddie: It would be a question about whether John was a lawyer or not. Ok, so John gets excited about being understood.
Oxana: [Да]
Eddie: Yes, so naturally we hear him respond, rather incredulously, I might add.
Oxana: [Вы говорите по-английски?]
Eddie: “You speak English?” And then she answers modestly…
Oxana: [немного]
Eddie: “A little”. What we have to focus on in this lesson is the prepositional case. We’ve mentioned it before and even given you some examples, but now let’s get a better understanding about what the prepositional case really is.
Oxana: Do you remember Eddie told you that Russian cases are just different endings instead of different prepositions that the English language has? So the prepositional case is so-called because it is the only case which is used exclusively with prepositions. And it is used with only three prepositions, [в] “in” or “at”, [на], “on” or “at” and [о], “about.
Eddie: It’s used primarily to indicate the location of objects. To form the prepositional case, you either need to replace the vowel ending with [е] or add [е] to the consonant ending. There are some exceptions, but this rule will work for most of the nouns. See? We don’t even overload you with genders here. But you can find them in our PDF materials. Oxanna, tell us what words in our dialogue were used in the prepositional case.
Oxana: [В Мичегане, В Москве, В Киеве.]
Eddie: And the last grammar point for today is the pronoun [кем]. We translated it as “as who”, which sounds more logical in English than “by who”, but literally it means “by who”.
Oxana: That’s because we used the instrumental case here. Or we used the instrumental case because it had by in its meaning. I'm not sure which comes first.
Eddie: Don’t confuse us here. What is the instrumental case?
Oxana: The instrumental case is used to show an instrument that helps to make something. In English, the indicators of the instrumental case can be the prepositions “by” or “with. As in the sentence “I came by bike” or “I eat with a spoon.” In Russian, the nouns “bike” and “spoon” will change their endings because they don’t have the indicating prepositions “how” or by what means something is done.
Eddie: So basically the name instrumental denotes the instrument with which something is done, but in our case we have [кем] which literally means “what instrument are you at work” or “what instrument do you serve as”.
Oxana: No matter how ridiculous it might sound, but it’s true. [кем вы работаете?] is basically “by who do you work?”

Outro

Eddie: So everyone is going to [говорить по-русски] a little more Russian after this lesson. Now we can talk about the weather, what we do for work and what language we can speak. Great lesson.
Oxana: Yes. And check out the supplementary PDF materials for some more professions and languages, and how to say them in Russian.
Eddie: Until then we leave our lovely passengers to their chatter and we’ll rejoin our journey next time for new language adventures. That just about does it for today. Till next time. [Пока!]
Oxana: [До свидания!]
--
Елена: Мичиган, как сейчас в Мичигане, не холодно?
Elena: Michigan, kak seichas v Michigane, ne holodno?
Джон: Нет, нормально. Я из Детройта, а в Детройте почти как в Москве. А как погода в Киеве?
John: Net, normal’no. Ya iz Detroita, a v Detroite pochti kak v Moskve. A kak pogoda v Kieve?
Елена: В Киеве тепло. Вы были в Киеве?
Elena: V Kieve teplo. Vy byli v Kieve?
Джон: Нет, но хочу поехать как-нибудь.
John: Nen, no hochu poehat’ kak-nibud’
Елена: А кем вы работаете?
Elena: A kem vy rabotaete?
Джон: Я...как это сказать по-русски? lawyer
John: Ya...kak eto skazat’ po-russki? lawyer
Елена А, вы юрист.
Elena: A, vy yurist?
Джон: Да. Вы говорите по-английски?
John: Da. Vy govorite po-angliyski?
Елена: Немного.
Elena: Nemnogo.

12 Comments

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RussianPod101.com
Monday at 6:30 pm
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Hello RussianPod101 listeners!

What do you think about small talk?

RussianPod101.comVerified
Monday at 6:08 pm
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Hello Christophe,


We use Dative case here.

You can find rules about it in this lesson:


https://www.russianpod101.com/lesson/lower-beginner-18-talking-about-family-in-russian/?lp=48


Please let us know if you have other questions. 😄


Elena

Team RussianPod101.com


Christophe
Sunday at 11:25 pm
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Hello RussianPod101.com,

I am a little confused by this example given in the lesson notes: 'Москве почти девятьсот лет' (Moscow is almost nine hundred years old).


I wonder why we find Москве here. It seems to be the prepositional case. I thought the genitive case was used to express possession, that's why I would have said ''Москви почти девятьсот лет''.


Kind regards,

Christophe

RussianPod101.comVerified
Monday at 10:14 am
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Hi Francis,


Thank you for your comment. We have checked the lesson audio again and found no issues. Could you please check again and let us know?


Cheers,


Khanh

Team RussianPod101.com

Francis
Wednesday at 1:26 pm
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Hello Linda

The introduction to lesson 4 does not play well in all lessons. It does not flow continuously. The pauses are uncomfortable.

Francis

RussianPod101.comVerified
Tuesday at 6:29 pm
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Hello Steven,


Thank you for posting.


Let us know if you have any question.

Cheers,

Lena

Team RussianPod101.com

steven simpson
Monday at 10:04 am
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This is perfect.

RussianPod101.comVerified
Thursday at 9:32 am
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Hello Michael,


Thank you for the feedback. It means a lot!


Wish you good luck for your Russian studies:smile:


Cheers,

Neha

Team RussianPod101.com

Michael
Monday at 9:40 am
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I really liked the table of prepoositional case endings. I've seen lots of similar tables in other sources, but I like yours the best. It's easy to read, although I can't put my finger on how.:mrgreen:

RussianPod101.comVerified
Monday at 11:04 am
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Hello, Linda.


I'm Jay from RussianPod101.com


Thank you for letting us know the issue.

Now you can check the dialogue audio file for this lesson.


We're sorry for the inconvenience.


Thank you.


- Jay Lee / Russianpod101.com

Linda
Saturday at 5:55 pm
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Please can you provide a Dialog file with this lesson as this is missing. Thanks.