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  5. "El niño no me alcanza."

"El niño no me alcanza."

Translation:The boy does not catch up with me.

November 7, 2013

49 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/brfuller23

Does alcanzar not me "to reach for"? As in the other sentence, "Ella alcanza los zapatos," means "She reaches for the shoes." It seems that the translation, "The boy does not reach for me." should also be correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Talca

Real world Spanish: Mantenga fuera del alcance de los niños. (Keep out of reach of children.) OK. The word is used in its noun form here, but alcanzar means to physically reach something or someone. This sentence is best translated: The boy does not reach me. In American English we have the idiom "to catch up to/with" meaning to physically become within reach.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PegWhitman

That is what I said the boy does not reach me. It was wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/elizadeux

The Oxford dictionary lists "catch up with" and "catch you up." Are these expressions not used in British English to mean "to reach somebody who is ahead by going faster"?

https://www.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/us/definition/english/catch-up_1


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/homefire

That's what I put, for exactly the same reason.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jenna99192

I also gave this translation. Can anyone explain why this is incorrect? Is it just because the context of the sentence is different? Could this translation ever be correct?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/skepticalways

brfuller23, the previous sentence and all of the comment section agreed "reaches for" was NOT correct, although a common phrase in English - "to reach for" would require para and the infinitive form, alcanzar.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vicki.kura

I wonder if "for" is the problem. I would think "the boy reaches me" should work. When I put it in a translator, they want "para" in your sentence. But it gives the same sentence as duolingo's when I put in mine.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ClaryBijl-

The child cannot reach me,..why is this wrong ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sdoege

Is the "up" necessary? I entered "The boy does not catch me" and was marked incorrect. Is this definitely wrong or should this be submitted as an error?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Billhmjr

According to Word Magic Dictionary ALCANZAR = (1) "to catch up with / reach" (2) "reach up to, / reach, / reach at, / get at" AGARRAR = (1) "to catch, / catch hold of, / get," etc. The boy does not catch me. = El niño no me agarra. This has the same meaning as the sentence below The boy catches the ball. = El niño agarra la pelota. I hope that helps.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CrashCat

I guess if anything the problem here is that English is fuzzy on this. I've absolutely used "catch me" and "catch up to me" interchangeably while not meaning the same as "catch the ball".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tessbee

I got marked wrong a few exercises ago for using "catch" for "alcanza" in "Él alcanza el sombrero." I got this meaning of just catch (without theup) from the drop-down, which also makes sense for "He catches the hat", so it really isn't fair that learners suddenly get informed that "alcanzar" doesn't REALLY mean "catch", but rather "catch up". Sure I learned my lesson, but this looks like just plain negligence on the part of DL's translating staff. Will report I guess.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GaelBraxton

Agreed. Here's a lingot or duo


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vicki.kura

SpanishDict uses "coge" for "catch" and "alconzo" for "catch up". More to study.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Beto330368

Coger is probably best avoided in parts of Latin America. (Due to its sexual connotation)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AshleyBlackwood

on another dictionary (spandict), it is defined as 'to achieve' and in the reflexive 'to manage'. I used achieve which wasn't accepted; however, it must be this kind of 'catching up with' as opposed to the more physical sort of catching. Finalmente las mujeres las pueden alcanzar cosas grandes blah blah blah. (don't know about my spanish, but c'est la vie.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/constructionjoe

"Achieve" as a translation only works in association with an abstract/idea that is out of reach, not between two objects (as in this sentence: boy, me). "Catch up" is a relation of two bodies moving in the same direction with one velocity overtaking the other. "Catch" can be two objects moving in the same direction, but not required prior to one body effectively being in control of/contact with the other.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BillMuller1

That was my answer too and i believe it should be correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MeredithNa

Now I'm starting to realise why Spanish speakers hate the fact that a lot of English words mean different things. "Off" for example. The alarm went off. I turned off the alarm.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jbauer1414

Could someone else use this word 'alcanzar' in a sentence? I don't feel as if I have a grasp for the word as yet with the single example.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Royraju

El corredor logró alcanzar al favorito y ganó la carrera.

¿Me ayudas? Necesito ese libro de la estantería y no puedo alcanzarlo. Está muy alto.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jbauer1414

Royraju, thanks a lot. It sounds like if I just use "to reach" instead of "to catch up with", I will be okay.

Thanks!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SGuthrie0

From the Duolingo dictionary,

El niño no me alcanza. The boy does not catch up with me.
Él alcanzó al pájaro. He reached the bird.
Al mediodía los habremos alcanzado. At noon we will have reached them.
Nosotras te vamos a alcanzar. We are going to catch up with you. https://www.duolingo.com/dictionary/Spanish/alcanza-alcanzar-verb-present+indicative+tense-third+person-singular/73c696596eb88dc996a46658a4502747


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sefig

shouldn't "the boy is not catching up" also be accepted?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MrHazard

"Is (not) catching" is the progressive present: "(no) está alcanzando" (estar in the present tense plus the present participle (the "gerundio") of the main verb).

The form in Duolingo's example just requires the simple present. The progressive tenses are used when you want to accent or intensify an action. For example, "he eats" ("come") is pretty general, but "he is eating" ("está comiendo") nails it to the here and now or might be a retort to someone who asserts that he isn't eating.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Alvina-

That sentence leaves out "with me".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JustinTunl

Have just asked a few English speakers & all of them would 'catch me up'- in everyday speach 'catch up to me' sounds unaturally windy.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/constructionjoe

Are you using catch me up to mean one person getting another current on information or running in pursuit of another or both? "Catch me up" has always meant the first one to me. Just curious if that is a regional thing.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MeredithNa

For me, "catch me up" sounds strange. This is a regional thing. I would never say that, but always "catch up to me".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/carmencita652544

Both are proper English (west coast american), but have different meanings. "Catch me up" means to update me on the latest occurrences. "Catch up to me" means to come from behind and then become on par with me. See also eskerjim on this page.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/superguhsu

^ What she said. I immediately thought anyone saying 'catch me up' must speak British English. 'Catch up with me' would be used almost always physically, but it could be used context to mean converse with. It seems if alcanzar can be translated "to catch (something) up" it should also translate to the idiom "to bring (someone) up to speed"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SGuthrie0

"Catch me up" sounds like British English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mecasto

As others have said, "catch me up" sounds like British English. US English would tend to say, "catch up to me."

However, we (native US English) might say, "He's going to catch me up" if, for instance, I was late to a movie, and a friend is going to "catch me up" on what happened before I arrived. However, that's a completely different context than the Spanish sentence we're discussing here.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/skepticalways

Vicki and all commenters, yes "catch me up" is most often used for someone to inform another of what has been going on, perhaps for a meeting that the speaker was late for, or a school class he or she missed. In the sentence Duo gave us, the sense is like never "reaching the same place" as another already was. For example, if you are at level 20 in Spanish lessons and we both do two lessons a day, I will never "catch up to " your level, unless I do more lessons, assuming you keep studying more advanced levels when the "learning tree" is finished. My sister is older than I am, so I can never reach (catch up to) her age, as long as she lives! Yet I hope I will reach (attain) her age (that she is now) later on in my life.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/micksong98

I agree with this translation, and it's what I used. However, it says I'm wrong and that the "correct" translation is "The boy does not catch me UP".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ian.Mckay

The boy does not catch me is the same in english, certainly uk english!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RonaldPrid

Dl's answer doesn't sound correct. "The boy can't catch up, or the boy is unable to catch up would be better choices.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iamador

why can't this mean "the boy can't catch up with me" ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MrHazard

The use of "can't' would involve some version of poder" (can, be able to). "El niño no puede alcanzar conmigo." (That's just a guess and probably has grammar problems, but I think it's in the zone. Hopefully someone can fix that up!)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/eskerjim

You're probably pretty correct... I put:

The boy cannot reach me.

Probably, would have to be: El niño no puede alcanzarme...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/david.11

One English translation is wrong. You do not "catch up to someone" in English. On the other hand you can "catch someone up", a translation that was rejected.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Billhmjr

"catch up to someone" is a perfectly proper phrase in English. On the other hand I cannot remember ever hearing the phrase "catch someone up".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/eskerjim

David has been away from his studies for so long that he will never catch up to Bill...

Bill, having completed his studying, will catch David up...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/homefire

If that's proper, I've never heard it said properly! Curious. Are you British, perhaps?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MaDhyan

I'm a native English speaker (UK) and I would definitely not say 'catch up TO me', but I would say 'catch me up' in this context. I've reported this several times and hope that one day 'catch me up' will be accepted as a correct answer.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vicki.kura

American mid-west speaker.

But doesn't "catch me up" mean something different than "catch up to me"? To "catch me up" would mean to keep me in the loop and tell me the story/gossip up to date. Where "catch up to me" means you were behind and now you are with me.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MaDhyan

Vicki: every dictionary/thesaurus will give various definitions of words or phrases that can sometimes be quite unrelated in meaning. That said, I agree with you that 'catch me up' can be used in the way that you mention. But I consider this to be a more common expression on your side of the pond than mine. I would probably say, in that context, "bring me up to speed", or even 'fill me in'. In the same way, 'catch up to me' would be understood in my part of the world, but not so frequently used as 'catch me up', meaning exactly the same, but just a different way of saying it. There's no right or wrong here, just a regional, colloquial difference. That's the beauty of language, to my mind. There are so many ways to express your thoughts and feelings. Words are like colours on an artist's palette. In mixing them, the artist can create so many different hues. Using black and white he could convey an image but using different shades of colour, the image almost comes to life!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vicki.kura

Actually the two ways you mentioned are way more common here too.

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