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Lesson Transcript

Filip: Hi, I am Filip.
Becky: And I’m Becky. Welcome back to NorwegianClass101.com. This is Lower Beginner, Season 1, Lesson 17 - Hosting a Dinner Party In Norway. In this lesson you’ll learn how to say “What is it.” and “I was thinking of”.
Filip: The conversation is between Kjersti and Espen, who are having guests over for dinner.
Becky: That’s right, after a long trip to the western part of Norway, a nice dinner with friends is well deserved.
Filip: So in this lesson you’ll also hear about some delicious dishes.
Becky: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Filip: There’s a lot of delicious traditional Norwegian cuisine that I’d recommend to anyone visiting Norway.
Becky: Like the two we saw in our dialogue?
Filip: Yes, definitely. I like the ‘Torsk i smørsaus.’
Becky: That’s Cod in buttersauce isn’t it? Sounds yummy. Especially if you have it with potatoes and parsley.
Filip: Yes the ‘lammestuing med kålrabistappe’, which is “lamb stew with rutabaga” is also delicious.
Becky: Yeah, and rutabaga is something you’ll hardly find outside Scandinavia.
Filip: But these gems are usually hidden and not as readily available as you might think. Finding local cuisine might be a bit hard in Norway. This is especially true in the larger cities like Oslo and Bergen.
Becky: Definitely. But there are some restaurants around that serve just Norwegian dishes, and some restaurants that serve them along with other dishes.
Filip: The best way to experience traditional cuisine is to make friends with some Norwegians, and get yourself invited to a dinner party!
Becky: Major events like confirmations, baptisms, holidays and so on are also great opportunities for trying some Norwegian cuisine.
Filip: The chances you’ll find lamb, reindeer or other game meat on these occasions are high, and they’re definitely a special treat in Norwegian culture.
Becky: Ok, now let’s move on to the vocab.
Becky: Let's have a closer look at the usuage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Filip: Let’s explain this phrase from the dialogue - ‘du må gjerne hjelpe til’. It doesn’t really make sense if you translate it word by word.
Becky: No it doesn’t. “You must with pleasure help to”.
Filip: But combining ‘må’ with ‘gjerne’ creates a phrase. ‘Må gjerne’ or more correctly, a pronoun + ‘må gjerne’ means...
Becky: “[Pronoun] can feel free to...” This is a set phrase in Norwegian.
Filip: After pronoun + ‘må gjerne’, you can put pretty much any verb to make the phrase “feel free to + verb”. Now, in our dialogue, what we added was ‘hjelpe til’ which is also a bit confusing. ‘hjelpe’ basically means...
Becky: “help” but after the verb comes ‘til which means “to” as in “going to the mall”.
Filip: In this case we put ‘til’ after ‘hjelpe’ since it’s actually part of the longer phrase ‘hjelpe til’ + verb.
Becky: Or in English “help with” + verb”
Filip: So the example from our dialogue, ‘Du må gjerne hjelpe til’, is actually the short form of ‘du må gjerne hjelpe til å lage mat.’
Becky: “Feel free to help with making food”. We cut the last part “making food” because it was already understood in the dialogue. Let’s look at some more example to illustrate this.
Filip: Dere må gjerne ta med egen mat
Becky: “Please feel free to bring your own food” when said to more than one person
Filip: Han må gjerne hjelpe til å vaske opp
Becky: “He can help with doing the dishes if he wants”
Filip: Vi skal ha dugnad. Du må gjerne hjelpe til
Becky: “We are going to have a community cleanup. Please feel free to help.” Now let’s move on to the grammar.

Lesson focus

Filip: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to use ‘hva er det’ and ‘jeg tenkte’.
Becky: Which mean “What is it” and “I was thinking of” respectively. We’ll use the lines from our dialogue to help explain these.
Filip: First let’s start by looking at ‘hva er det’. First of all, this phrase can be used alone, as it is. There are a number of ways you can pronounce or stress the last word ‘det’, to change the meaning of the sentence. By saying ‘hva er det?’
Becky: You are asking “What’s that?” Notice the heavy stress on the last ‘det’.
Filip: Hva er det?
Becky: If you put lighter stress on it, people would expect you to continue you sentence. That’s because ‘det’ can mean both “that” and “it”. Which means it could basically be “What is that?” or “what is it?”
Filip: There are three types of stress you can put on ‘det’. As we mentioned, ‘hva er det’ with heavy stress means “what’s that?” ‘Hva er det’ with medium stress on the ‘det’ means “what is it?” as in “is there something wrong?”. Finally we have ‘hva er det’, which sounds like you are stopping mid-sentence.
Becky: So what if you continue the sentence? Well, you can pretty much make any question that contains the word“what” in it.
Filip: In our dialogue we saw ‘hva er det du skal lage for i kveld?’ It translates to...
Becky: “What are you going to make for tonight?” It can easily be shortened to...
Filip: ‘Hva er det du lager?’ meaning “What is it you’re making?” This again can be shortened to ‘Hva lager du?’
Becky: “What are you making?” but that’s beyond the scope of this lesson. Let’s get back to discussing the longer version.
Filip: Ok. You can make anything from a simple question into a very advanced one. After ‘hva er det’, you usually add a pronoun like ‘du’. Then you can add whatever verb you want to ask about.
Becky: Usually, these verbs appear with prepositions or nouns. Let’s look at some examples.
Filip: Hva er det du hører på?
Becky: “What are you listening to?”
Filip: Hva er det som lager den lyden?
Becky: “What is it that makes that sound?”
Filip: Hva er det du sier?
Becky: “What is it you’re saying?”
Filip: Now for our second phrase, ‘Jeg tenkte’. It’s often used by Norwegians when they are making suggestions or plans.
Becky: It’s easy to learn this one since it always comes at the beginning of the sentence. It means “I was thinking of”
Filip: Basically, you say ‘jeg tenkte’ + a verb in the infinitive. It’s just like the English “I was thinking of”. Let’s look at some examples.
Filip: Jeg tenkte å dra på teater
Becky: “I was thinking of going to the theater”
Filip: Hun tenkte å kjøre til byen
Becky: “She was thinking of going by car to the city”
Filip: Han tenkte å løpe ned på butikken
Becky: “He was thinking of running down to the shop”


Becky: Okay, that’s all for this lesson.
Filip: Make sure to listen again and also look at the lesson notes.
Becky: And if you have the chance, try to cook a Norwegian dish for dinner!
Filip: Takk for at dere hørte på, hade!
Becky: Thanks for listening, and see you next time!