Formal vs Informal

Hello everybody!

Today I got to think about personal pronouns and how they are used differently according to the language you speak. I’ll clarify. I’m referring in particular to the personal pronouns (You-second person singular and plural/he/she) that we use in both formal and informal contexts. In our daily conversations using the correct form is important because it can denote intimacy, distance or higher/lower social rank. I speak four other languages, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese and Norwegian, and I’d like to explain very briefly below the use of these pronouns in formal vs informal situations.

In Italian, we use the pronoun lei (third person singular) in formal situations and we use it with people we don’t know, such as authorities or high-level professionals. In a conversation with friends and family, we use tu (you, second person singular) instead.

In Spanish, they use usted (you) as a formal pronoun. I’ve lived seven years in Spain and if you have ever had the chance to get to know Spanish people or live in their wonderful country you’ll have perhaps noticed how friendly these people are. In fact, even if the formal pronoun should have been used in formal situations, using an informal pronoun such tú (you) is still okay. But I did meet people, such as professors, who still like to use the formal way.

Instead, in some countries of Latin America, they still use usted even in informal instances or vos (you) from voseo (this is the use of the pronouns vos in place of tú or vosotros in combination with the verb conjugated in the 2nd person plural) .

In Norway, du (you) is always used no matter the context or social rank, like in English today. The form de is a very old form which is not used anymore, as thee in English.

In Portuguese, the general rule is the same as in Spanish : tu (you) for informal situations, você (you) for formal situations. But in Brasil they always use the formal way você/vocês (you-second person singular and plural) for both formal and informal situations. 

Personally, I like to use the informal way as in Norwegian and in English, I feel comfortable with it because I think that giving importance to social rank or expressing distance is not necessary.  Respect should not be defined by grammar or by the use of formal pronouns. We can respect someone simply by using the right words.

How amazing are languages? And how hard is it to learn and remember all those rules?

What do you prefer to use: formal or informal way? What do you think?

I would love to read your opinions.  


You have to read this!

Hello everyone!

Still in lockdown? We still are here in Norway 😦 … There are a lot of things we can do while we are at home… but the one thing I definitely adore is to read a nice book… do you agree?

Lately I have been reading books about the philosophy of life which makes you see things in a more rational and positive point of view…and let me tell you it helps a lot, especially in this dark period. But the book I would like to talk to you about is something completely different and it tells the story of a woman, with three children and of all the responsibilities she has to deal with for her family. Throughout the story, which is written in the form of a diary, we are witnesses of her attempt to have or create a moment of intimacy with her husband… but in vain. It is a realistic book told through funny expressions, thoughts and words and what I liked most is her spontaneity to tell the events and her way to show her real identity through her thoughts, which are the essence of this story. Her name is Paz and the title of the book is “Mama’ en busca del polvo perdido” (English: Mommy in search of the lost sex) by Jessica Gomez. It is in Spanish, as you see 🙂

Why did I read this book? I also would like to share with you that I am part of a group of Spanish women who believe and fight for our rights where we can speak freely about all sorts of things that revolve around our sexuality or other intimate phases of our life. Well, sometimes the leaders of the groups “Sex community” & “Mis 4 lunas” (My 4 moons), suggest that we do some “homework” such as reading this book.

So here I will report a paragraph to let you have an idea of the book with its translation in English, so you can think of buying it and reading it 😉



January 13th.

You ask when did everything start? I wouldn’t know when.

Well, doing a quick review of my memory, going back on the movie of my life, I would take the first break in the moment that, seated on the kitchen table a couple of years ago, I got shocked when I saw the positive pregnancy test of my third child. Or rewinding a bit more, I would stop in the other moment, seven years before when I got paralyzed and speechless for more than half an hour while I was looking at the positive pregnancy test of my middle daughter. That time I was seated on the couch. If I turn back a little more, I can stop the movie in the moment when my oldest son was born, ten years ago, and I see myself there: exhausted but smiling with a little baby in my arms. And a bit before the happiness of a positive pregnancy test, and a bit earlier the moment when Didier and I decided to be parents.

And now that we are at this point, I could go back till the day when we went to live together, to the day when we met each other, to the first time that I got the period or to the exact moment inside of the uterus of my mother where my double X decided to give me functional ovaries.

But let’s not try to look for the guilty.

You ask when did everything start? I suppose that, by virtue of being practical- my mom, that woman able to put lacquer on that carded hair for half an hour, already told me that: ” Daughter, you must be practical”-, I could say that the hecatomb was unleashed eleven days ago. And the thing happened as follows.

It was the 2nd of January. It was a fateful Thursday. Well, in honor of the truth it was a normal Thursday, but I have always wanted to begin a story saying that it was a fateful day because it looks very professional. As I was saying, it was Thursday, the 2nd, and I still had the remains of the New Year’s Eve dinner rolling around the living room table. They were consistent especially in grape seeds that did not stop appearing glued everywhere and pieces of nougat well sucked by someone- nobody knew by whom-; with the feeling of sadness to throw it away but it sucked to eat it and your strategy was to leave them there till the dog could eat them “accidentally” or, in their case, they had their own life and you can throw them away without any remorse.


Is it nice? I hope you will have the chance to read it in Spanish, who speaks it and maybe in English in a future…

Here I leave the links to buy it if you are interested:

mamá En Busca Del Polvo perdido: Gómez, Jessica: Libros

Also you can search for Ana Galvez Rodriguez and Laura Solas Fernandez on Facebook and Instagram 🙂 if you want to learn more about the interesting female world 🙂

Ana Gálvez Rodríguez | Facebook

Laura Solas Fernandez | Facebook

Enjoy your reading whichever book you choose, because reading is culture and knowledge.