Thursday, September 24, 2009

¿Cómo se pone?

It's not that this bit of Spanish is all that unusual, but for me, the context I heard it used in was.

I was having lunch in Puerto Nuevo, Mexico, speaking with a waitress about a few words in English, and she asked me how to spell one of them. I expected to hear "como se escribe", which we know means "how is it written/spelled". But instead she said "cómo se pone". At first I was taken by surprise and actually repeated the phrase "cómo se pone" back to her. Luckily I got over my shock fairly quickly and we continued on with our conversation.

Turns out "cómo se pone" is indeed a colloquial way to ask some how something is spelled. Go figure. At apparently this not just a Mexicanismo, as someone from Chile confirmed the meaning of como se pone for me at WordReference.

Now go and surprise your friends with yet another piece very authentic Spanish!

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