Monday, June 25, 2012

Me estoy quedando pelón

I remember the first time I heard the verb quedarse.  I was in Mexico leaving my hotel room for the day just as the maid was arriving.  She asked me:

¿Cuántos días más te vas a quedar?

My mind went into overdrive and somehow I figured out what she was asking me.  I really don't know how, because my Spanish really wasn't all that good at the time and quedarse hadn't yet become part of my vocabulary. In fact, at the time I didn't even realize the verb she was using was quedarse. But after a few days I got back home and found out that one of the most common meanings of quedarse is to stay.

¿Cuántos  días más te vas a quedar?
How many more days are you going to stay?  

Me quedo tres días más 
I'm staying three more days
Quedarse is not just for staying in hotel rooms.

Tengo que quedarme en el trabajo hasta tarde
I have to stay late at work

Ve tú, yo me quedo 
You go, I'll stay

Quédate aquí
Stay here

Me quedé en casa
I stayed at home

Quedarse con means to keep something.

Quédate con el cambio
Keep the change

Me ofrecieron el puesto, per lo más probable es que me  quedé  con el mismo trabajo
They offered me the position, but most likely I'll keep my current job

Ladies, you'll probably find this usage particularly useful.  When you're out shopping quedarse is great for telling the salesperson what you want.

me quedo con esta camisa.
I'll take this shirt.

me quedo con este
I'll take this one

Quedarse sin means to be without something.

Me quedé sin trabajo, ¿Y ahora qué hago?
I don't have a job, what do I do now?

Me quedé sin ideas.
I'm out of ideas

¡Me quede sin gasolina y no arranca!
I'm out of gas and it won't start!

Mi celular se quedó sin batería
The battery on my cell phone is dead

Remember when I said there are some surprising uses of quedarse?  Well, at least they were surprising to me.

Me quedé embarazada
I got pregnant

Me estoy quedando pelón
I'm going bald

me quedé dormida
I overslept

Interestingly enough, you can use the same sentence to say I fell asleep.

Me quedé dormida
I fell asleep

Context will help you figure out what's what, or you can just be more specific.

Me quedé dormida viendo la tele
I fell asleep watching TV

Me quedé dormido esta mañana
I overslept this morning

Me quedo en blanco
My mind went blank

These are the uses of quedarse that immediately come to mind, and while this list is probably far from exhaustive, it will expand your horizons immensely.

Espero que les sirva.


  1. Rodney, this is a really good post. Keep up the good work!

    There's another use for quedar: to settle on a time/place to do something.

  2. This is the most useful spanish post I have ever read. I am not being sarcastic! Thank you!

  3. Hey Rodney! Thanks for yet another informative post. I have a question about the section on " quedarse sin: you use "me quedé repeatedly but translate it as present tense in english. Shouldn't it be "me quedo" for those three examples? Thanks for clarifying :)

  4. Hey Rodney, I just subscribed. The more Spanish I learn, the more I realize what I don't know lol! Thank you for this man, really really useful.

  5. Thank you for this, I still hate the verb, but I appreciate the clarity lol