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Soy vs Estoy

 

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  #1  
Old May 15, 2008, 10:23 PM
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Soy vs Estoy

In another thread Jamie wrote:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamie
Hola! Yo estoy nuevo, tambien!

Then Tomisimo corrected:

Yo soy nuevo/nueva también.

Can someone explain this? I too would have written Estoy nuevo. I thought estoy showed a temporary condidtion. Estoy in la clase de español.

And I thought soy indicated a more permanent condition. Soy un americano o soy un medico.

So now I'm confused. Please elucidate.
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  #2  
Old May 15, 2008, 10:31 PM
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Good question. There was another thread where I explained some of this. I'll try and find it so I don't have to repeat myself.
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  #3  
Old May 15, 2008, 10:54 PM
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Ok, I found the ser vs estar thread I was looking for. I have also now stuck it to the top of the Grammar forum so it's easier to find.

That thread should help you to understand, but I'll also explain it some more here. Ser is used for definitive characteristics even though they are not necessarily permanent:

Soy nuevo aquí - I'm new here
Soy fumador - I'm a smoker
Soy alchólico - I'm an alcoholic
Soy estudiante - I'm a student
Soy doctor - I'm a doctor
Soy rubio - I'm blond


These have varying degrees of permanancy, from not very permanent to fairly permanent. But they all have something in common. They are a definitive trait/characteristic about the person.

I think it's a mistake for language teachers to bring up this idea that ser refers to permanent stuff and estar to mutable stuff. If you look closer, that's not the case at all.
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Old May 16, 2008, 12:51 AM
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It helps me to remember that estar can change in short order.

Estoy cansado pero después de unas pocas hora en mi cama . . .
Estoy enojado pero . . . espera . . . ¿Eso qué es? Una mariposa. ¡Ah, cuánto me alegran las mariposas!

Pero si alguien es nuevo, ya va a ser el PCN por un rato sin remedio. (PCN es mi sigla para señalar FNG en español.)

Last edited by gatitoverde; May 16, 2008 at 12:55 AM.
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  #5  
Old May 16, 2008, 02:25 AM
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If it's easier for you, it can also be explained with permanent/not permanent
You can say "Estoy nuevo" when you came out of a good shower after a soccer match.
It's mutable stuff, one hour before you were tired ("old")

If you're saying you're new (in the forums), is permanent stuff (will change in two or three months or in some years or never , like apprentice and master)

greetings
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  #6  
Old May 16, 2008, 06:04 AM
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When I use estar I think to be in the state of as opposed to ser
which is truly to be
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  #7  
Old May 16, 2008, 07:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gatitoverde View Post
It helps me to remember that estar can change in short order...
Quote:
Originally Posted by sosia View Post
If it's easier for you, it can also be explained with permanent/not permanent
Quote:
Originally Posted by poli View Post
When I use estar I think to be in the state of as opposed to ser which is truly to be
These are all valid explanations and can be helpful, but can also be counter-productive because things are not that simple. How about:

La farmacia está en la esquina de Morelos y Doria.
Son las ocho con veintiocho minutos.

Permanent or temporary?
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  #8  
Old May 16, 2008, 07:56 AM
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Wow. Thank you all very much. Lots of information to digest in that original Ser vs Estar thread.

Poli's statement seems to work in my head. Of course, with caution as Tomisimo points out.

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  #9  
Old May 16, 2008, 09:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tomisimo View Post
These are all valid explanations and can be helpful, but can also be counter-productive because things are not that simple. How about:

La farmacia está en la esquina de Morelos y Doria.
Son las ocho con veintiocho minutos.

Permanent or temporary?
Point. Set. Match. Well played, Sir.
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  #10  
Old May 17, 2008, 05:25 AM
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Es la excepción que cumple la regla.
Si fuese tan fácil, se le hubiese dicho desde el principio:
"La regla gramatical es....."
making possible the impossible
"La farmacia está (situada) en la esquina de Morelos y Soria"
"La farmacia es grande"
Son las ocho: Permanet. A time is always permanet. Next second IS another time.
Saludos
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