Wednesday Vine – mi hijito tiene siete años

comment 1
commands / greetings / Mexico / numbers / present tense

Today’s Vine is by Mario Bautista from Mexico City.

It’s not only entertaining, but also a good review of some basic conversational phrases.

The Vine


  • Attendant: Qué tal, buenas noches, menores de ocho años HOY entran gratis.
  • Mom (madre): Ay, qué bueno, mi hijito tiene siete.
  • Son (hijo): Ma, tengo diecinueve.
  • Mom: ¡Cállate! Qué te decía–


  • Attendant: How’s it going, good evening, TODAY anyone under the age of 8 enters for free.
  • Mom (madre): Oh, that’s great, my little son is 7.
  • Son (hijo): Mom, I’m 19.
  • Mom:  Shut it! What did I tell you–

Recall that cállate was used in this lesson as well, and I translated it to shut up.

Cállate is used as an aggressive, direct way of telling someone to be quiet.

However, it is not a perfect one-to-one translation of “shut up.”  Sometimes in English you’ll tell someone, “be quiet!” or “shut it!” or “shhhh!” and you can be just as aggressive “cállate” in Spanish.

Note: mi hijo = my son.  The word “hijito” is a diminuitive, meaning “my little son” – see this lesson (“yo me voy a comprar unas cositas“) for another example of diminutives.

Slow-Mo Version

Useful Phrases

  • ¿Qué tal? – How’s it going? / What’s up?
    • a useful greeting
    • ¿Qué tal la clase? = How is/was the class?
    • ¿Qué tal + ______? = How is/was ______?
  • Buenas noches. – Good night / Good evening
    • can be used for parting (buenas noches, see you in the morning)
    • or meeting (buenas noches, welcome to this nighttime event!)
  • Gratis – Free of charge
    • libre – free, as in “available”
  •  Tengo ____ años = I am _____ years old.
    • literally, I have ____ years.
    • tengo diecinueve = I’m 19.
  • ¿Qué te decía? = What did I tell you? / What did I use to tell you? / What was I telling you?

The Artful Act of “Noun-ifying” Things

Consider the phrase,

menores de ocho años = persons younger than 8 years.

menor as an adjective = younger, minor, smaller

menor as a noun = someone or something that is younger, minor, smaller

This is true with a lot of adjectives in Spanish – you can conveniently noun-ify them.


This is a popular show on Univision, the Spanish-language TV network.

gordo as an adjective = fat

el gordo as a noun = the person/animal/thing that is fat

flaca as an adjective = thin

la flaca as a noun = the person/animal/thing that is thin


See if you can identify these words/phrases in English.

  • tengo diecinueve años
  • tengo veinticuatro años
  • no tengo siete años
  • el año
  • hoy
  • ¿qué tal?
  • buenas noches
  • cállate
  • entrar
  • gratis
  • mi hijo
  • el hijo

If you’re still reading this, watch the Vine again!  Then try to speak the words of the Vine out loud again, as slowly as you need to.

1 Comment

  1. Pingback: Friday Treat – mujeres en Instagram | Spanish in Six Seconds

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