Yo me voy/Ya me voy

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I've been listening to the Spanish audio series by Pimsleur and I'm still having a little trouble with something.

The lessons say that "I am leaving" is "Yo me voy." My girlfriend, (a native Spanish speaker) says it's "Ya me voy." Although I will tend to take her word for it, I'm still a little puzzled.

If it's "Yo" then to me the sentence looks like, "Me, I, I will go." So where is the context for "leave" rather than "go"?

If it's "Ya" I"m puzzled for a different reason. I don't quite get the usage of "Ya." I've looked at the dictionary here on line and my hard copy and I still can't grasp the context in this case.

All help is appreciated. I'm still very much a beginner, but I'll get there!

39277 views
updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by Difster

18 Answers

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I'm shuddering!

Please don't tell me "video's" or "how r u'" will ever be standards...

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by Martyn
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I feel your pain, brother. It's also rare to see someone use lie/lay properly. Even TV news reporters and newspaper writers seem to have been absent for many of their English classes.

But then, language is a living thing, and constantly changes. What you and I consider errors may be the standards of tomorrow.

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by 00bacfba
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"Most native speakers learn their language only by absorption"

Sadly, too true for English.

English grammar wasn't taught in English schools for years, and neither was proper spelling. Too many people below the age of about 35 have dreadful spelling, because they weren't shown that it is important - things like there/their/they're, your/you're, two/to/too - and someone who can properly place an apostrophe is a rarity.

The upside is that speakers of English as a second language can get it wrong and a lot of native English writers wouldn't notice, but that doesn't make it right...

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by Martyn
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¡¡¡me voy!!!

¡¡¡Me largo!!!!
jejejeje

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by 00494d19
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The problem is, we learned
" i before e except after c"

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by motley
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James is quite right:

No sé si voy o vengo.

Yes, motley, very confusing.

Voy!!! (I'm) coming!!

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by 00494d19
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googit = Google hit

Counting googits for various words or phrases is a good way to judge their frequency of usage. For example, gooling wierd gets 15 million hits (showing that lots of English speakers have spelling difficulties), but googling the correct spelling gets 145 million.

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by 00bacfba
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I want to reply to SLP2008's post, but for some reason there is no "Reply to this" link after her post.

Anyway, "No sé si estoy yendo o viniendo" gets only one lonesome googit, and while I'm not positive, I believe the best way to express this in Spanish is "No sé si voy o vengo" (over 1100 googits). Note that the order is reversed between English and Spanish.

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by 00bacfba
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I'm also messing up my post.

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by motley
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This is on wordreference

'irse verbo reflexivo
1 (marcharse) to go away, leave: me voy, I'm off
¡vámonos!, let's go!
¡vete!, go away!
vete a casa, go home ? Ver nota en leave
2 (líquido, gas) (escaparse) to leak
3 (direcciones) ¿por dónde se va a...', which is the way to...?
4 (gastar) to go, be spent: no sé en qué se me fue el dinero, I don't know where the money went
Ten cuidado con este verbo. La traducción más común es to go, pero sólo cuando expresa la idea de alejarse de quien habla o del oyente. Si, por el contrario, implica un acercamiento al hablante o al oyente, entonces es mejor usar el verbo to come: ¡Voy! Coming! Esta regla también se aplica a los verbos compuestos como go o come out (salir), go o come in (entrar), go o come up (subir), go o come down (bajar), etc.

Now we have voy as coming, Dios mios

I don't know if I'm coming or going, which is true but how would you say it.

No sé si vengo o si me voy
'''''

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by motley
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I don't know if I am coming or going, which is true but how would you say it'

Ya no sé si voy o vengo.

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by 00bacfba
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now we have voy as coming.

Ir and venir do not map perfectly to go and come. In Spanish, ir is always used to refer to moving away from the subject's current location, and venir to refer to moving toward the subject's current location. So when Lalo says "I'm coming" (Ya voy) in my example, he uses ir because he is moving away from his current location toward his mother. This actually makes perfect sense when you think about it, and English is the illogical one in this case.

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by 00bacfba
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David, You are right, but the indicative present has it's irregularities, were consonants ( Z and G ) are added before the ends cer, cir, nir, ner:
Agradecer= Agradezco.
Conocer= Conozco.
Producir= produzco.
Merecer= merezco.
permanecer: permanezco.
Entonces: Envejecer= envejezco.
Venir= vengo.
Poner= pongo.
Tener= tengo.

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by motley
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As James said: "Yo" is unnecessary because it's implicit in te word "Me" ( which is a personal prnoun in 1st. person/ who speaks).

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by Vernic
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It's all smoke and mirrors. wink

But thanks all the same!

updated MAY 5, 2008
posted by 00bacfba