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Lesson Transcript

Gina: Hello everyone and welcome to RussianPod101.com. This is the Upper Beginner Series, Season 1, Lesson 16, Seeking a Soulmate in Russia. I’m Gina.
Svetlana: And I’m Svetlana. Privet. In this lesson we’re going to learn the differences between the negative pronouns некто and никто.
Gina: And we’ll also listen to the trainer convince Elena to find a partner for gym training.
Svetlana: The conversation is between Elena and her trainer, and it takes place in the gym.
Gina: The speakers have a professional relationship, so they’ll be using formal Russian.
Trainer: Для того, чтобы вам было веселее заниматься спортом, я вам советую найти близких по духу людей. Тех, кто тоже увлекается спортом, посещает спортзал и придерживается правильного питания.
Elena: Даже и не знаю. Никто не приходит на ум.
Trainer: Может, ваши подруги или родственники?
Elena: Мои подруги слишком заняты с детьми, а муж с иронией относится к моему новому увлечению. Хотя ему тоже не мешало бы похудеть.
Trainer: Попробуйте его уговорить. Уверен, у вас получится.
Trainer: Dlya togo, chtoby vam bylo veseleye zanimat'sya sportom, ya vam sovetuyu nayti blizkikh po dukhu lyudey. Tekh, kto tozhe uvlekayetsya sportom, poseshchayet sportzal i priderzhivayetsya pravil'nogo pitaniya.
Elena: Dazhe i ne znayu. Nikto ne prikhodit na um.
Trainer: Mozhet vashi podrugi ili rodstvenniki?
Elena: Moi podrugi slishkom zanyaty s det'mi, a muzh s ironiyey otnositsya k moyemu novomu uvlecheniyu. Khotya yemu tozhe ne meshalo by pokhudet'.
Trainer: Poprobuyte yego ugovorit'. Uveren, u vas poluchitsya.
Trainer: In order to get the most out of it, I recommend you find people who share your interest in fitness. Those who are also doing sports, going to the gym, and eating healthy.
Elena: I don't even know. Nobody comes to my mind.
Trainer: Maybe your friends or relatives?
Elena: My girlfriends are too busy with their kids and my husband is making fun of my new fad for sport. But actually he needs to lose some weight too.
Trainer: Try to convince him. I am sure you can make it.
Gina: So Elena needs to find a fitness soulmate. I think it’s a really good idea.
Svetlana: I agree. It’s always more fun to do things with a friend. You can compete, keep track of your achievements, and encourage each other.
Gina: Exactly! Russia’s a collectivist country, isn’t it? I mean, being a country with a long communist history, people are probably very community-minded or group-oriented and share a lot of things?
Svetlana: Absolutely. Even though now Russian people are becoming more individualistic, relationships with family and friends are still very close. Friendships are life-time commitments for many Russians.
Gina: That’s good. I need to make some Russian friends.
Svetlana: Sure, because Vmeste veseley.
Gina: Another famous Russian saying?
Svetlana: Yes. It means “It’s more fun to be together.”
Gina: Agreed!
Gina: Let's take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson. The first word we shall see is...
Svetlana: близкий [natural native speed]
Gina: close
Svetlana: близкий [slowly - broken down by syllable] близкий [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: придерживаться [natural native speed]
Gina: to adhere to, to keep
Svetlana: придерживаться [slowly - broken down by syllable] придерживаться [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: ум [natural native speed]
Gina: mind, intellect
Svetlana: ум [slowly - broken down by syllable] ум [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: родственник [natural native speed]
Gina: relative
Svetlana: родственник [slowly - broken down by syllable] родственник [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: уверенный [natural native speed]
Gina: confident
Svetlana: уверенный [slowly - broken down by syllable] уверенный [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: попробовать [natural native speed]
Gina: to try
Svetlana: попробовать [slowly - broken down by syllable] попробовать [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Svetlana: дух [natural native speed]
Gina: soul, spirit
Svetlana: дух [slowly - broken down by syllable] дух [natural native speed]
Gina: And last...
Svetlana: уговаривать [natural native speed]
Gina: to convince, to persuade
Svetlana: уговаривать [slowly - broken down by syllable] уговаривать [natural native speed]
Gina: Let's have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Svetlana: The first key phrase is близкий по духу or быть близким по духу.
Gina: The English equivalent of this phase would be “a soulmate”. Let’s break the phrase down to understand the meaning of each word.
Svetlana: The adjective близкий means “close”, “near”, or “intimate”; the preposition ПО can be translated as “on”, “along”, “over”, “about”, or “to”, and the noun дух means “soul” or “spirit”.
Gina: Great. Now that we know the meaning of each word, can you give us an example sentence with this phrase?
Svetlana: Sure. For example,
Очень сложно найти человека, который был бы тебе близкий по духу.
Gina: “It’s hard to find a person who could become your soulmate.” And that’s so true! Okay what’s next?
Svetlana: The next one is the phrase приходить на ум.
Gina: “to come to one’s mind.” It’s another expression that’s frequently used in Russian.
Svetlana: Right! Приходить means “to come on foot”, and the preposition HA can be translated as “to” or “on”, and ум means “mind” or “intellect”.
Gina: So the translation “come to one’s mind” is a literal translation?
Svetlana: Yes. Let me give you an example.
Он говорит все, что приходит к нему на ум.
Gina: “He says everything that comes to his mind.”
Okay, and what’s the last key word for this lesson?
Svetlana: Lastly we have the phrase не мешало бы.
Gina: It’s an expression that can be roughly translated as “it would be better if... ” There’s no literal translation for this phrase, but it’s usually used when one gives advice or makes a suggestion. For example,
Svetlana: Вам не мешало бы повторить правила перед экзаменом
Gina: “You’d better review the grammar rules before the exam.” Okay, I think we got it! Now let’s move onto the grammar.
Svetlana: In this lesson, you’re going to learn how to use the negative pronoun НИКТО, which means “nobody” or “no one”. Remember where we used it in our dialogue? Никто не приходит на ум.
Gina: "Nobody comes to mind."
Svetlana: This pronoun consists of the negative particle Ни - and the interrogative pronoun Кто, which means “who”.
Gina: So this pronoun refers only to animate nouns. For example,
Svetlana: Уже на протяжении двух дней мне никто не звонит.
Gina: “Nobody has called me for almost two days.”
Okay, Svetlana, but what’s the negative noun for inanimate nouns?
Svetlana: It’s НИЧТО , which means “nothing”. It also consists of the negative particle НИ and the question word ЧТО, meaning “what”. For example,
Ничто не предвещало грозы, но неожиданно пошёл дождь.
Gina: “Nothing foretold the storm but it suddenly started to rain .”
Svetlana: Since НИКТО and НИЧТО are pronouns, they will change according to the grammar case.
Gina: To see the modification of these nouns check the notes for this lesson. But we’ll give you some example sentences to see how these nouns are modified.
Svetlana: Я здесь никого не знаю.
Gina: “I don’t know anybody here.”
Svetlana: Here, the pronoun НИКТО is in the genitive case and it became никого, or “nobody”. Let me give you another example. Они мне ни о чём не рассказали.
Gina: “They didn’t tell me anything.”
Svetlana: In this case, the pronoun is in the prepositional case ни о чём.
Gina: Okay great! I think that’s quite clear. Have a look at the lesson notes for more examples. So at the beginning of the lesson, Svetlana, you said that we’ll be looking at two nouns that are often confused, right?
Svetlana: Oh yes. Thanks for reminding me. They are никто and некто.
Gina: Yeah, that sounds similar to me.
Svetlana: Exactly! That’s why people usually make mistakes when they use them. But actually, they have completely different meanings. Некто is translated as “someone” or “somebody” as opposed to никто, which means “nobody”. The pronoun Некто is used when we’re talking about a stranger or an unknown or suspicious person. For example, Некто ходит вокруг моего дома.
Gina: “Somebody’s walking around my house”.
Yes, I think I see the difference. But it’s tricky, so be careful listeners. Check the lesson notes for more information and examples.


Gina: That’s it for this lesson, everyone! See you next time.
Svetlana: Пока пока.