Dialogue

Vocabulary

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Lesson Notes

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Lesson Transcript

INTRODUCTION
Brandon: Hello, and welcome back to FinnishPod101.com! This is Lower Beginner Season 1, lesson 19 - Sir, Here’s A Perfect Finnish Necktie For You. I’m Brandon.
Nico: Hei, minä olen Nico. Hi, I’m Nico.
Brandon: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to address the person you’re talking to politely.
Nico: The conversation takes place at a store. A salesperson comes up and asks if she can help Petri.
Brandon: She is being polite, so she will be speaking standard Finnish in the polite register. Let’s listen to the conversation.
DIALOGUE
Myyjä: Voinko auttaa?
Petri: Etsin solmiota.
Myyjä: Tuleeko se Teille?
Petri: Kyllä.
Myyjä: Millaista solmiota olette ajatellut? Tämä vihreä sopisi Teille hyvin.
Petri: Ehkä ottaisin mieluummin jonkin hillitymmän.
Brandon: Let’s hear the conversation one time slowly.
Myyjä: Voinko auttaa?
Petri: Etsin solmiota.
Myyjä: Tuleeko se Teille?
Petri: Kyllä.
Myyjä: Millaista solmiota olette ajatellut? Tämä vihreä sopisi Teille hyvin.
Petri: Ehkä ottaisin mieluummin jonkin hillitymmän.
Brandon: Now let’s hear it with the English translation.
Myyjä: Voinko auttaa?
: May I help you?
Petri: Etsin solmiota.
: I’m looking for a necktie.
Myyjä: Tuleeko se Teille?
: Will it be for you?
Petri: Kyllä.
: Yes.
Myyjä: Millaista solmiota olette ajatellut? Tämä vihreä sopisi Teille hyvin.
: What kind of a tie do you have in mind? This green one would suit you well.
Petri: Ehkä ottaisin mieluummin jonkin hillitymmän.
: I think I’d rather have something more conservative.
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
Brandon: Petri is buying himself a tie. Do you think he’ll need it for work?
Nico: Well, he’s a programmer, and programmers are usually quite casual at work, so it’s probably for some other occasion.
Brandon: What do you think he wears at work as a programmer in Finland?
Nico: I’d guess a t-shirt and jeans with a sweater.
Brandon: What about other workplaces? Do Finnish workplaces usually have dress codes?
Nico: Not very often, I think. I believe some banks and such do, but most don’t. If you work in a bank, you’re expected to dress quite formally, typically in a suit.
Brandon: But in most other workplaces you don’t?
Nico: No. It depends very much on if you’re in a customer-facing position.
Brandon: If you regularly meet customers, you should probably dress more smartly than if you’re just among colleagues. Okay. Now onto the vocab.
VOCAB LIST
Brandon: Let's take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
The first word we shall see is:
auttaa [natural native speed]
to help
auttaa [slowly - broken down by syllable]
auttaa [natural native speed]
Next:
etsiä [natural native speed]
to search
etsiä [slowly - broken down by syllable]
etsiä [natural native speed]
Next:
solmio [natural native speed]
necktie
solmio [slowly - broken down by syllable]
solmio [natural native speed]
Next:
Millainen [natural native speed]
what kind of
Millainen [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Millainen [natural native speed]
Next:
ajatella [natural native speed]
to think
ajatella [slowly - broken down by syllable]
ajatella [natural native speed]
Next:
sopia [natural native speed]
to suit, to fit
sopia [slowly - broken down by syllable]
sopia [natural native speed]
Next:
mieluummin [natural native speed]
rather
mieluummin [slowly - broken down by syllable]
mieluummin [natural native speed]
And Last:
hillitty [natural native speed]
conservative, subdued, calm, composed
hillitty [slowly - broken down by syllable]
hillitty [natural native speed]
KEY VOCAB AND PHRASES
Brandon: Let’s take a closer look at the usage of some of the words and phrases from this lesson.What’s our first word?
Nico: It’s Millainen. This is a short variant of minkälainen, which means “what kind of”.
Brandon: You should answer this with an adjective, right?
Nico: Yes. It belongs to a set of words that all begin with a pronoun and end in -llainen.
Brandon: What are the other words in the set?
Nico: There’s Tällainen “this kind of”, tuollainen “that kind of”, and sellainen “that kind of”.
Brandon: Hmm, let me guess… They begin with the pronouns that mean “this”, “that” and “it”.
Nico: Very good! Tämä is “this”, tuo is “that”, and se is “it”. Even though -llainen is not a word by itself, there’s no vowel harmony in tällainen. But in casual spoken Finnish, people often say it tälläinen, with vowel harmony.
Brandon: Okay. What’s next?
Nico: Solmio. That’s the word for “necktie”.
Brandon: And what is a bow tie called?
Nico: It’s solmuke or rusetti. Both solmio and solmuke come from the word solmu, which means “knot”.
Brandon: They sound pretty similar so be sure to review these with your lesson notes listeners!
Nico: If you don’t remember which one of them meant “tie”, you can use kravatti. That’s another word for the ordinary tie.
Brandon: That’s good to know. Do we have more words to look at?
Nico: Yes, there’s one more word, hillitty.
Brandon: You can use this word about behavior and colors, among other things. In the context of behavior, it means you are calm and composed, and you don’t show off.
Brandon: Nico, when you’re talking about colors, it would be the opposite of bold, right?
Nico: yes, Hillityt värit means colors that don’t stand out. In the dialogue, Petri actually said hillitymmän, which is the comparative form of hillitty.
Brandon: That’s good to know, But that’s our topic for the next lesson, so stay tuned. Okay, now onto the grammar.
GRAMMAR POINT
Brandon: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to address someone politely.
Nico: The basic idea is simple – you just use the plural second person forms instead of the singular, that is, Te instead of sinä.
Brandon: In Finnish, usage of polite forms is a bit tricky, because there aren’t any clear-cut rules. In principle, you can use them whenever you talk to someone you don’t know, especially if the other person is clearly older than you. But in practice, you don’t do that, right?
Nico: Right. There are a lot of people who hardly ever use the polite forms. Young people especially prefer to talk casually.
Brandon: Where would you be most likely to hear polite speech?
Nico: … from People like waiters, salespeople, and receptionists. They typically use the polite forms when they’re talking to customers, and also radio and TV reporters usually use them when they’re interviewing people.
Brandon: Okay. What did the salesperson say to Petri?
Nico: The first sentence where she addressed him directly was Tuleeko se Teille?. Teille is the second person plural pronoun.
Brandon: That means “Will it be for you?”. Then she asked “What kind of a tie do you have in mind?”.
Nico: Yes, that was Millaista solmiota olette ajatellut? There’s one point to make in this sentence. The regular second person plural verb you’d use when addressing several people would be olette ajatelleet, instead of olette ajatellut.
Brandon: Oh, I see. Isn’t this last word the singular past participle?
Nico: Yes, that’s just it. Even though the pronoun and the helping verb olette are plural, the past participle is in the singular form. It’s the same for adjectives.
Brandon: That’s interesting. So you’re mixing the numbers, using both plural and singular forms. Can you give us an example of an adjective.
Nico: Let’s say “Are you happy with the service?”. When addressing a single person casually, you’d say Oletko tyytyväinen palveluun? Oletko is the second person singular verb form, and tyytyväinen…
brandon... is the nominative singular form of the adjective that means “content” or “pleased”.
Brandon: Okay, how about when you’re addressing many people?
Nico: Then you’d say Oletteko tyytyväisiä palveluun? Oletteko is the second person plural form, and tyytyväisiä is the partitive plural form.
Brandon: And what’s the polite form?
Nico: Oletteko tyytyväinen palveluun? Here you have the plural verb but a singular adjective.
Brandon: All right. Listeners, time for a quick quiz. How would you ask politely “Are you looking for a tie?”
Nico: Remember that “to look for” is etsiä, and “tie” is solmio.
[Pause]
Nico: The answer is.. Etsittekö solmiota?
Brandon: Listeners, remember to check the lesson notes for more information and examples.

Outro

Brandon: Well, that’s about all the time we have. Thanks for joining us, and we’ll see you next time!
Nico: Hei hei!

16 Comments

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FinnishPod101.com Verified
Monday at 06:30 PM
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Hello Listeners, let's practice the Finnish polite address here!  

FinnishPod101.com Verified
Friday at 11:18 AM
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Hello Jannatul,


Thank you for your question! It is "solmio-ta, in partitive form as in Finnish we express sentences with suffixes. In this case, it answers the question, using, wearing “mitä?”, what kind of item. Hope this helps! 😄


Let us know if you have any question.

Cheers,

Aarni

Team FinnishPod101.com

Jannatul
Thursday at 04:49 AM
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Why its solmiota not solmio only?

FinnishPod101.com Verified
Saturday at 02:26 PM
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Hei Naomi,


Kiitos mielenkiintoisesta kertomuksestasi suomalaisesta muodollisuudesta.

Osuit naulan kantaan! (You really nailed it!) 😄 Teitittelyä kuulee enää vain harvoin. Sitä käytetään erityisesti silloin, kun puhutaan vanhoille ihmisille, presidentille ja muille erittäin korkea-arvoisille ihmisille, kuten professoreille.


If you have any questions, please let us know.


Thank you.


Aarni

Team FinnishPod101.com


Naomi
Sunday at 09:14 PM
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Oops, I mean I said "Halauaisitteko..." using the polite form. :)

Naomi
Sunday at 09:13 PM
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Terve, Corinna, Nate ja Aarni!


Olen matkustanut Suomeen, ja ihmisia eivät olleet muodollisia. (I have traveled to Finland, and people have not been very formal). Johtajani sanoi, että työtoverisia käyttävät teitittely kun puhutaan firman presidentille, mutta he käyttävät sinuttelu kun puhutan kaikki muut. (My boss told me, that the colleagues use the polite form of address when talking to the company's president, but they use the casual form of address when talking to everyone else).


Saksa on todella erilainen! (Germany is very different!)


I asked a colleague "Haluaisitko syodä lounasta kanssani?" once. I know this is a sentence we learned in an earlier lesson. When I told my boss about this, she burst into laughter and said "Probably no one has ever spoken to Juha so formally before." I guess it would be more usual to say "Tuletko lounalle?" ("Are you coming to lunch?") ... But I'm not exactly sure what you'd say in a more casual setting.

FinnishPod101.com Verified
Wednesday at 10:08 AM
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Hello Corinna and Nate,


Thank you for posting and sharing differences of formality between these two countries.


Let us know if you have any question.


Cheers,

Aarni

Team FinnishPod101.com

FinnishPod101.com Verified
Wednesday at 09:48 AM
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Hi Nate,


Thank you for your question.

Yes, those are nearly perfect. ? You just missed one a letter from the word "juotava" Correct word is "juotavaa" in this case. (to drink)


If you have any questions, please let us know.


Thank you.

Aarni

Team FinnishPod101.com

Corinna
Sunday at 09:01 AM
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Terve taas, Nate!


Haha, eipä kestä! Ja kiitoksia! It's still a challenge, but I'm learning. :) I actually don't remember how old those comments are. :P Yes, Päivi is a big help. :)


Yeah. I think I'll always be worried about offending people with using informal speech at the wrong time. :P Haha that would be interesting, for sure.


No, suomi on joskus ihan vaikea, mutta joo, saksa on lisää muodollinen. But I like both. :)

Nate
Sunday at 11:56 PM
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Terve Corinna! Thanks for replying, I wasn't sure how old your comments were and you seem to have a really good grasp of Finnish already so I didn't know if you were still active here. Your conversations with Päivi have answered many questions for me :)


I think some German people would be quite shocked to see how informally Finnish people speak to each other, even neighbours who are friends will sometimes speak formally in Germany. I think some would maybe even only learn the formal Finnish and use that with everyone so they didn't feel uncomfortable talking informally to people they don't know haha I remember finding it weird that our mail man would speak formally to me even though he was almost twice my age, it's just how it is there.


Olen iloinen että suomi ei ole niin muodollinen kuin saksa ja tässä suhteessa, tuntuu helpompi minulle!

Corinna
Saturday at 02:58 AM
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Nate


Haha yeah it is confusing. I really should know more than I do, considering most of my family speaks a German dialect. :P I haven't been to Finland or Germany yet, but from what I know I'd have to agree with you. Aha, I can imagine how nerve-wracking that would be!