Thursday, 16 February 2012

Wish Me Luck!


SCENARIO
Imagine a relative, a friend or a colleague is on the verge of a momentous event. Perhaps he/ she is about to start a new job, begin a new career, launch a business, set off on a journey, or something similar. The other person has just broken the news to you and wants to ask you to wish him/ her good luck. At that point, he/ she says to you something like: "wish me luck!".

 In Spanish, he/ she could choose to be less formal and say to you:
Deseame suerte

On the other hand, he/ she could choose to be more formal and say to you:
Deséeme suerte



OUR TIP
What you are being asked to do here is to express a wish.  Since the wish you are about to express refers to the person you are talking to, you DO have to make a choice about the level of formality you are going to use when expressing your wish.

Basically, you have two levels of formality to choose from. Your choice will be determined by how well you know the person in question and how much familiarity, affinity and closeness you want to convey along with your wishes. Basically, you have two options:

1.- The object of your wish is someone with whom you DO have a very good rapport (could be a relative, a friend or a colleague). Along with your wishes, you also want to signal familiarity, affinity or closeness. In such cases, you could choose to be more familiar/ less formal and express wishes such as:
  • Que Dios te bendiga* (God bless you).
  • Que te vaya bien* (I wish you well).
  • Que tengas suerte* (I wish you good luck).
  • Que seas feliz* (I wish you happiness).
  • Que no tengas frío (I hope you don't feel cold).
2.- The object of your wish is someone with whom you DON'T have a very good rapport (could be a relative, a friend or a colleague). Along with your wishes, you also want to signal that you want to keep your distance. In such cases, you would choose to be less familiar/ more formal and express wishes such as:
  • Que Dios le bendiga* (God bless you) .
  • Que le vaya bien* ([I wish you well).
  • Que tenga suerte* (I wish you good luck).
  • Que sea feliz* (I wish you happiness).
  • Que no tenga frío (I hope you don't feel cold).

Now you should practice giving instructions to someone who says to you:
Deseame suerte

*Please see grammar below


Grammar-The Subjunctive
These are examples of expressions using the subjunctive to express a wish. When using the subjunctive to offer wishes such as these, you may consider the following cases:


1.- Affirmative wishes offered to a single person using a more informal/ familiar language. Some examples of  wish expressions of this type are:
  • Que Dios te bendiga (God bless you).
  • Que tengas suerte (I wish you luck).
  • Que seas feliz (Y wish you happiness).

2.- Affirmative  wishes offered to a single person using more formal language.  Some examples of  wish expressions of this type are:
  • Que Dios le bendiga (God bless you).
  • Que tenga suerte (I wish you luck).
  • Que sea feliz (I wish you happiness).

3.- Affirmative wishes offered to a group of people using a more informal/ familiar language.  Some examples of  wish expressions of this type are:
  • Que Dios os bendiga (God bless you-plural).
  • Que tengáis suerte (I wish you-plural luck).
  • Que seáis felices (I wish you-plural happiness).

4.- Affirmative wishes offered to a group of people using a more formal/ familiar language.  Some examples of  wish expressions of this type are:
  • Que Dios les bendiga (God bless you-plural).
  • Que tengan suerte (I wish you-plural luck).
  • Que sean felices (I wish you-plural happiness).

5.- Affirmative wishes offered to a group of people (where you also belong to the group-level of formality is irrelevant in this case).  Some examples of  wish expressions of this type are:
  • Que Dios nos bendiga (may God bless us).
  • Que tengamos suerte (may we have luck).
  • Que seamos felices (may we be happy).

6.- Negative wishes offered to a single person using a more informal/ familiar  language.  Some examples of  wish expressions of this type are:
  • Que no tengas frío (I hope you don't feel cold).
  • Que no te llueva en la vacaciones (I hope it doesn't rain on your holidays).

7.-  Negative wishes offered to a single person using a more formal/ familiar  language.  Some examples of  wish expressions of this type are:
  • Que no tenga frío (I hope you don't feel cold).
  • Que no le llueva en la vacaciones (I hope it doesn't rain on your holidays).

8.-  Negative wishes offered to a group of people using a more informal/ familiar  language.  Some examples of  wish expressions of this type are:
  • Que no tengáis frío (I hope you don't feel cold).
  • Que no os llueva en la vacaciones (I hope it doesn't rain on your holidays).

9.-  Negative wishes offered to a group of people using a more formal/ familiar  language.  Some examples of  wish expressions of this type are:
  • Que no tengan frío (I hope you don't feel cold).
  • Que no les llueva en la vacaciones (I hope it doesn't rain on your holidays).

10.-  Negative wishes you offer to a group of people (where you also belong to the group-level of formality is irrelevant in this case).  Some examples of  wish expressions of this type are:
  • Que no tengamos frío (may we not feel cold).
  • Que no nos llueva en las vacaciones ( I hope it doesn't rain on our holidays ).

Now you should practice the use of subjunctive with some examples of wishes of your own.



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