1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Spanish
  4. >
  5. "Can we touch that motorcycle…

"Can we touch that motorcycle?"

Translation:¿Podemos tocar esa moto?

January 22, 2013



Why is "eso moto" not acceptable as opposed to "esa moto"?


Moto is short for motocicleta, and is still considered feminine.


Yes! I put ese and was wrong. Now I remember that rule holds for fotografia as well, therefore esa foto..where moto and foto are feminine nouns


Just remember it's like la bicicleta for bicycle. I was proud to have thought of this on my own before answering! Haha.

  • 2185

There's a bit more. A Mexican lady confirmed for me that the usual rule is to use the masculine ese with a masculine noun. But you always use the feminine esa with a feminine noun. Eso is more for when the noun is not mentioned.

  • 1327

Thanks. That's a big help...I always get these wrong.


That means aquella too. Why duo rubs me one heart?

  • 2185

“Podemos tocar la moto aquella” es correcta pero se traduce un poco diferente: “Can we touch that motorcycle over there?”. How did you answer?, ¿Cómo contestó Ud.?


Aquella= that, but farther away than eso/ese/esa. So since we don't see the moto why is the 1st choice not an option? Does not make sense to me.


Same opinion here.


Tricky tricky. La Motocicleta


Can someone please remind me of something? Tell me if I'm wrong, but are there three "thats"? Ese, eso, and esa? Which is feminine and masculine?

[deactivated user]

    Doesn't 'moto' specifically mean a motor? Isn't 'motocicleta' technically the correct word to use?

    • 2185

    If you believe WordReference.com, moto first means motorcycle, then an adjective for homeless, then as a modified noun for other powered vehicles such as a jet ski. Motor isn't even in the list.


    I put: Nos podemos tocar esa moto. Any idea why this is wrong?

    • 2185

    Nosotros podemos tocar... Nos podemos doesn't work here (or anywhere as best I know).


    what would we can touch that motorcyle be?

    • 2185

    Same thing save for the "signos de interrogación". The difference in intonation has to be pretty strong along the lines of the difference of intonation in these answers: "I'm going to the party". "Yes, you are" vs. "You are???"


    Why is "Podemos a tocar esa moto" not accepted? A friend who speaks Spanish (native from the Salvador) told me that they put an "a" between two verbs all the time. I am aware that this is Spanish from Spain, so my other question is "Is this also a situation where Spanish from both places differ?" (both places as in Spain and Latin America"). Thank you!


    why would "that" be "esa" more that "esta"?


    Eso, ese, and esa are the forms for that. Esto, este, and esta are the forms for this. For me, it has always been difficult to remember that. For some reason esta seems more like it should be that, but of course no one asked me. .

    • 2185

    And Duo is strict in separating this, that, and it. A good translator may well translate esa as this, it, or spell out what the object is if the context calls for it.


    I'm still confused. I was given the English sentence "Can we touch that motorcycle?" and asked to select all correct answers from the three options provided. I selected both ¿Nosotras podemos tocar aquella motocicleta? -and- ¿Podemos tocar esa moto? Evidently, only the second is correct. (¿Podemos tocar esa moto?) Is the first one wrong simply because aquella translates better as "that one over there" from a distance, while esa means "that" when it's not so far away?

    Or is there some other reason for "¿Nosotras podemos tocar aquella motocicleta?" to be marked wrong?


    Yes, as a general rule, Duo has an issue with aquella as that. In fact, Duo doesn't do much with aquella because in contextless sentences it is hard to differentiate. Interestingly enough, I don't think I have ever seen a sentenced like Quieres esta o aquella, which would give a better picture. And I know it is kind of a cheat, but anytime you see a word like motocicleta which is correct but not really taught on Duo at all, take a very careful look at the sentence. I have complained to them, for example, that every time you see either vos or vosotros in a choice, you know there will be an error in the sentence. I understand that Duo's doesn't teach either form, but putting them in only incorrect answers may give people who are unfamiliar with the forms the feeling that they are by nature incorrect.


    Why is this not "¿Podemos tocamos esa moto?" Does having podeMOS invalidate the need to use the mos version of tocar?


    Poder is a modal verb. Modal verbs are always directly followed by an infinitive. Podemos tocar esa moto. Quiero hablar español. Necesitas comer. Other verbs will generally have an a or a de between the verbs, but the second verb will always be in the infinitive. Many modal verbs are the same in English actually. I want TO GO. I need TO BE. But English is not as consistent


    Is there a reason why "ese moto" is not considered correct? I thought that "ese" was the neutral form of "that"


    No. That's incorrect in a couple of important ways.

    1. There is no such thing as a neuter/neutral demonstrative adjective only a neutral/neuter demonstrative pronoun. In other words when this or that stands directly before a noun it must agree with that noun in gender and number. Only when it stands alone can it refer to the amorphous this or that which cannot be tied back to a gendered noun.

    2. Ese is actually the masculine singular demonstrative adjective or pronoun. Eso is the neuter demonstrative pronoun. The masculine plural form however is esos. Ese coche, esos coches.

    3. I can't tell from your post whether you understand this or not, but moto, like foto, is actually feminine. Both moto and foto are shortened forms of longer words and the shortened form maintains the original gender. La motocicleta is shortened to la moto and la fotografía becomes la foto.

    So here the feminine singular form is required esa moto.


    Why did it use esa once and then aquella the second time


    Esa and aquella are both translated as that, although aquella refers to something somewhat more remote. Either should work any time you see that on Duo unless they come up with a sentence that talks about this, that and that one over there.


    I used "moto" but I was corrected. The correct answer said "motor". Why is "moto" wrong for "motorcycle"?


    It isn't. But if I might make a wild guess did you perhaps say ese moto instead of esa moto? Despite ending in o moto is short for motobicicleta and is feminine. The reason I suspect this is that for some very strange reason Duo generally will suggest an answer of the same gender as you used instead of simply saying you used the wrong article or adjective.

    Learn Spanish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.