¡Hola y bienvenidos!
Today's lesson is Part I about the irregular but actually user-friendly verb gustar: to like. Gustar is user-friendly because most of the time we only use two forms, singular and plural. So when you talk about something you like that is singular, you say:
me gusta (may-goos-tah) Me gusta la pizza: I like pizza
If you what you like is plural, "gusta" becomes "gustan":
me gustan (may goos-tahn) Me gustan los Acereros: I like the Steelers
Easy, right? To say you don't like something, just add "no" in front of the phrase:
No me gusta el frio: I don't like the cold
No me gustan las clases: I don't like the classes.
What if you want to say you like or dislike doing something? That's easy, too. Use "me gusta" and the infinitive form of the verb (the unconjugated form you find in the dictionary):
Me gusta cantar (cahn-tar): I like to sing
Me gusta nadar (nah-dar): I like to swim
Me gusta leer (lay-air): I like to read
You can even add “mucho”:
Me gusta mucho cocinar (koh-seen-ar): I like to cook a lot.
It’s just as easy to say what you don’t like to do:
No me gusta trabajar (trah-bah-har): I don’t like to work (very useful!)
No me gusta limpiar (limp-ee-ahr): I don’t like to clean (also useful)
No me gusta manejar (mah-nay-har): I don’t like to drive
You can also add “para nada” to emphasize that you really don’t like it at all:
No me gusta para nada (pahr-ah nah-dah) lavar el carro (lah-var el car-roh).
I don’t like to wash the car at all.
Now you can look up any word in Spanish to say what you like and don’t like. Just start off with “me gusta” or “me gustan” and off you go!
Next week we’ll go over Part II of Gustar, asking and answering questions about likes and dislikes.
Links: if you haven’t already, check out http://spanish.about.com/ for an online newsletter with Spanish lessons.
For those who may be more advanced, a great podcast is: radioambulante.org