Forum Rocket Spanish Spanish - Grammar A question of which "was"

A question of which "was"

Will--13

Will--13

Hola a Cristian y todos ! Suppose we had the following sentence ... Our flight to Madrid (it) was comfortable "Nuestro vuelo a Madrid (fue or estuvo) comodo" right???? It is easy to determine the we need the preterit -the plane landed and thats that -a completed action. But which Preterit to use -fue or estuvo??? The problem is not only do we have two past tenses, preterit and imperfect BUT we ALSO have another set of criteria to determine which preterit to use -1>Does a PERMANENT or TEMPORARY condition exist? A flow chart might be useful -ha ha :) Will
Dan-H24

Dan-H24

I am not (nor will I ever be) as knowledgeable as Cristian, but I am going to put in my guess, more to test my evolving knowledge than to answer your question. Rather than decide whether a condition is permanent or temporary, I have stumbled upon the idea of considering the "condition" of the subject...how something is... (estar) vs. an "essential characteristic" of the subject...what something is... (ser). In your example, I believe that being comfortable is a condition of the flight rather than an essential characteristic of the flight, therefore estar is the right verb and estuvo the right conjugation. Being comfortable is not an essential characteristic of this flight. If the flight encountered a storm on a given day it might not be comfortable. I eagerly await the contribution of our resident "Yoda" to affirm or debunk my analysis...
Will--13

Will--13

Dan, Well we agree it's the preterit and I agree with your analysis about it being a condition so estuvo would be correct with me also. I do hope Yoda jumps in s
the-hefay

the-hefay

Dan, although I'm no expert, your explanation is similar to what I would've said.
Cristian-Montes-de-Oca

Cristian-Montes-de-Oca

Hola :D! "Estuvo" would be my 1st choice. But I would also use "fue", the explanation given to us by Dan was very impressive, Sometimes , us native speakers, forget (either on purpose or just because we ignore it) the rules for applying "ser" and "estar" and, well, this is not a new discover, but we also tend to "break" the rules, specially when using slang...thank God there is no Grammar/ortography police checking everything we say and write in spanish, otherwise many of my mexican friends would be either fined or arrested (some of my friends deserve grammar-life sentence!!!!). Estoy casado and soy Casado, for example. Some people use the 1st, and some the 2nd. Maybe the ones using "estoy" might think marriage is not forever, who knows? After thinking of this example, I google it and to my surprise I found an article using this example to explain ser and estar. It seems they are both interchangeable. http://spanish.about.com/od/usingparticularverbs/a/casado.htm Saludos!
Will--13

Will--13

I would love to see a flow chart developed to explane the decision making process to determine which "was" to use in a given sentence. The flow chart should have START and END ovals, IF THEN diamonds, PROCESS retangles , FLOW CONTROL arrows and so on. I bet it would reveal a surprising complexity. I bet it would reveal the lack of a unique answer. I bet it would show different outcomes would result based on the order of the input. My own question is beyond my own skills. But Cristian would you try it? Would anyone else like to try to develope a flow chart? Once finished I bet it would go viral in language web sites ! Will
Dan-H24

Dan-H24

Will: what you are asking for would be incredibly helpful for people like us who are struggling to learn the nuances of the language. But, and this is only my undereducated guess, what you suggest is impractical. I say that because language is more art than science, has more ambiguities, more things that are the way they are just because they are. If it were possible to construct such a chart, I suspect it would be so incredibly complex as to be useless. I think us poor students are just going to have to slog ahead on our own, sometimes guessing whether to use ser or estar, por or para, and whether a is needed before an infinitive. The more we guess, the more often they will be correct, and at some point will become intuitive.
Ava Dawn

Ava Dawn

I work with processes, hence a flow chart is invaluable. It does not have to be so complicated. I know I do flow charts in my head while studying RS. It changes depending on what the need is. My weak point right now is the play it portion, so I spend a lot of time memorizing the conversation scripts. Before, after listening to the lesson of the day. I would go to the conversation scripts and then the additional vocabulary. When I learn the vocabulary, I would go to the hear it, write it, know it and the quiz. I then go to the next lesson. But when the play it mode was added, I realized I could be tested and pass the understanding of words and phrases. But I could not speak those words and phrases. So maybe someone could do a flow chart on just por and para. I also noticed that you can't translate it word for word also. Carmen was talking about wanting to go to college to become a nurse, but instead got married because she wanted a have a family. The decision was very difficult. I did not see the past tense of the verb querer? (to want). I saw tenia ganas. Here it is- I wanted to study, but also I wanted to start a family. Tenía ganas de estudiar, pero también tenía ganas de formar una familia.
Dan-H24

Dan-H24

Aurora: I appreciated your comment about doing flow charts in your head. I sort of do the same thing when deciding which verb conjugation to use. So far I only know present, preterite, and imperfect. So in my mind I visualize moving left to right through the tenses until I find the right one, then down to find the right person/number, then visualizing what should be in that "box."
Will--13

Will--13

Dan, You have memorized several hundred verbs and are able see them as tables in your mind??? -wow! good grief!!!! I have taken a differen approach -I review the irregulars every other day in the hope they will become automatic like riding una bicicleta. Btw if you have the present pret and imperfect down you also must be able to use the future since the defacto future is a subset of the present tense Will
Dan-H24

Dan-H24

Will: I can't yet say that I have memorized several hundred verbs. But what I can say is that I have encountered verbs throughout the Premium and now Premium Plus levels I have added them to a set of flashcards in Quizlet. The set is over 150 verbs that I run through every other day. Regular verbs like hablar are pretty easy to visualize and quickly get to the right conjugation. Highly irregular verbs, as you mention, take some additional mental juggling.
Will--13

Will--13

Does anyone have an ap for the android that will display the conj for any intered verb? All I have is a list of 40+ verbs that displays pres, pret, impef future and condittional Will

Ask a question or a post a response

If you want to ask a question or post a response you need to be a member.

If you are already a member login here .
If you are not a member you can become one by taking the free Rocket Spanish trial here .