Stupid is as stupid does

13 September 2005
4:14 PM

As is to be expected, I have been making my fair share of Spanish mistakes. Here are a few of my recent best:

  • At dinner with my Bolivian family, I was recounting a story from high school. I said, “Cuando tenía cinquenta y cinco años,” and I saw my family try to surpress smirks. When I asked if I said something funny, Jorge pointed out that I said, “When I was 55 years old…” instead of “When I was 15 years old.”
  • Yesterday in class my professor asked “¿Cómo estás?” (“How are you?”) I replied, “No estoy tan casado que ayer.” Of course, what I meant to say was, “No estoy tan cansado que ayer.” Ah, what a difference a letter can make. I meant to say “I’m not as tired as yesterday,” but said instead, “I’m not as married as yesterday.”
  • My Bolivian mom asked where I got my new textbook. I held it up and replied, “I bought this word today at school.”

I have made quite a few mistakes like that last one, substituting random words everywhere. Maybe that will start to clear up in a few weeks? ¡Espero que sí! (“I hope so!”)