Intermediate 20: I’m Not Into Politics, But…

MP3 Audio (Lesson) | MP3 Audio (Dialog)

No doubt, the current political scene in Brazil is going through a difficult period. Still, we should be able to talk about it without being mean and ugly. That is how our people see it, and that is how our lesson flows today. Ah, if everyone could approach it this way!

Lesson audio

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Dialog audio

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Dialogue
Discussion
 A: Sempre ouvia dizer que política, futebol e religião não se discutem, né?
I have always heard that you shouldn’t discuss politics, soccer, and religion, right?
  B: Mas hoje em dia é quase impossível não falar, especialmente sobre a política.
But nowadays it’s almost impossible not to talk about it, especially about politics.
  A: Olha, é muito frustrante. Eu acabo de falar com Thiago e ele sabe mesmo tocar nas teclas que me irritam, menina.
You know, it’s really frustrating. I just got done talking to Thiago and he really knows how to push the buttons that drive me crazy, girl.
  B: Com Thiago! Desde quando a gente dá bola pro Thiago? Nem ele acredita na metade das coisas que diz.
With Thiago! Since when do we care about Thiago! Not even he believes half the things that he says.
  A: Eu sei, mas ele bota tudo no saco de “esquerda” ou “direita” e sempre leva tudo aos extremos. Eu tento ficar calada, mas sempre acabo explodindo, não tem jeito.
I know, but he puts everything in the “leftist” or “right” bag and he takes everything to the extreme. I try to keep quiet, but I end up exploding, there’s no way to avoid it.
  B: E você viu que ele sempre repete os memes, postes e blogs nas redes sócias, sem nem pensar nem um minuto se são verdadeiros ou não.
And you saw that he repeats all the memes, posts, and blogs on social media without even considering if they are true or not.
  B: E sempre com essa cara de ofendido se alguém tiver opiniões diferentes.
And always with this offended looking face when somebody has a different opinion.
  A: É isso, concordo. E todo mundo sabe que a situação está difícil, tem que mudar, mas sinceramente, Andreia, a solução não pode ser simplesmente gritar mais alto do que os outros.
That’s it, I agree. And everybody knows that these are difficult times and things have to change, but honestly Andreia, the answer cannot be to simply to hout louder than the other guys.
  B: Tá vendo Thays! Se os políticos fossem como nós duas, hein, imagina os problemas que poderíamos eliminar.
You see, Thays! If the politicians were like the two of us, imagine the problems that could be eliminated.
  A: Pelo menos eliminaria Dr. Moleque Mimado Fissurado do Thiago.
At least we could eliminate Dr. Smart Aleck Finicky Stuck on Himself Thiago.

2 comments

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  1. Thad

    Professor,
    Thanks for the great lesson. My question concerns the first use of acabo in the third line. It seems like the action is done and over so why not “acabei de falar”? Am I thinking in too literal a manner?

    1. Orlando Kelm

      Thad, nice observation! You have actually caught on to something that linguists study a lot. Turns out that “acabo de falar” and “acabei de falar” are pretty much interchangeable. Brazilians will use the present tense “acabo” or the past tense “acabei” and either one is fine, and the meaning doesn’t really change.
      I know you’d like a more specific answer where I say, “this is the difference and this is right and this is wrong” but in this case, both are just fine.

      1. Thad

        Besides its beauty of sound, this type of flexibility is one of the things I love best about this language. It seems to reflect a sense of improvisation, and flow. Thanks, again.