Piropos

I had a few errands to run today and it’s so hot out that I didn’t feel like bringing the whole circus along with me for the ride, so I left the niños at home with la Suegra.

My weekend was emotionally draining and I’m tired, but even though I was entering the fires of hell by going outside today, (high of 93 F today in the D.C. Metro area), I decided to make the most of having a couple hours to myself.

Before I left my air-conditioned sanctuary, I put on a black belted shirtwaist dress which shows my curves, (the good ones, not the bad ones.) I hadn’t yet worn this dress which has hung in my closet for many months because although I adore it, I never had occasion to wear it. I was over-dressed for running errands, but wearing it made me feel good, so I did. Some days you just need to do that for yourself.

Well, while I was out, I got a piropo. Now, I’m not going to lie and pretend I’m offended. I know that some modern women will shake their heads in disgust at being treated like a piece of meat, but I don’t mind being a pork chop once in awhile.

The truth is, sometimes I even make up reasons to go by the Latino market when I’m having a low self esteem day. I’m sure to get a smile and an appreciative glance . Another confession? I love nothing more than pulling up at a red light next to a truck full of construction workers on a hot summer day.

So anyway, today I’m walking out the store and this young guy, (I’m guessing 20′s and he wasn’t feo, okay? He looked kind of like Jadiel and I’m only exaggerating un poquito), smiles, stops in his tracks and says, “Hey girl. You lookin’ fine. Look at you. Mmm, what’s your name? What’s your name, huh?”

I played it as cool as possible even though I was freaking out. I blushed and then managed to point to my ring as he approached me.

“Oh, man, you married? Dang, okay then,” he said, checking me out one last time before going on his way.

After I made it to my car and turned the air conditioning on, I burst into giggles and called my husband to brag. His first question was, “What are you wearing?” and then he told me to “Behave.” Hee hee.

So, chicas, how do you feel about piropos?

El Lechero (The Milkman)

My husband calls me multiple times per day from work. He calls on his break time, at lunch time, and then before he leaves to come home. He’s done this our entire marriage. As a chica who values her space, sometimes I’ve become annoyed because I felt he was being controlling but he insists he just misses me, and so I’ve grown accustomed to it. At this point, if he doesn’t call me for some reason, I become worried that something has happened to him.

Well, my husband has been working at the new job for a month now and the Mexican guys he works with have become comfortable enough with him to give him a hard time. They’ve noticed his phone habits and now they tease him. While we’re on the phone, his co-workers do lewd things with bananas from their lunch boxes. Then when he gets off the phone with me they ask him, “So, how is your woman? Is the lechero doing a good job with her?” (They think he is checking on me for macho reasons, so they like to insinuate that I’m not faithful in the hopes of getting him a bit riled up, I guess.)

Yesterday, the littlest guy in the group, Marcos, decided to tell a joke which he dedicated to Mr. López. I don’t know if he made it up or not. Here it is:

There is a man who is unemployed and his wife is complaining to him that he needs to find work. She nags him all morning to hurry up and get dressed and go job hunting. She pushes him out the door with a quick kiss on the cheek saying, “Good luck, my love! … Remember, don’t come back until you’ve found work.”

So the husband leaves but shortly the doorbell rings and another man arrives. The woman begins kissing him passionately as soon as he comes in the door. They go to the bedroom, but then the doorbell rings again.

“Hurry!” she says, “Go hide up on the top of the canopy of the bed and don’t come down until I say so.”

So the man climbs up to the top of the bed and hides.

Another man is at the door. He comes in and the woman begins kissing him passionately, too. They come into the bedroom but soon they hear the front door opening.

“Quick!” she says, “Go hide under the bed and don’t come out until I say so.”

So the second man crawls under the bed and hides just in time before the husband comes in.

“What are you doing home so soon?” the wife says. “I told you not to come back until you found work!”

The husband comes into the bedroom, throws his keys on the table and takes off his jacket. “I looked everywhere already. There’s no work out there.”

The wife begins to nag him, “But how will we pay the rent and all our bills? We don’t have enough money!”

The husband hugs his wife and reassures her, “Don’t worry, The Big Man Upstairs will take care of it.”

The man on top of the bed speaks up, “Hey! If I have to help with the bills, the guy under the bed has to chip in, too!”

Passion

Pasión, even the way most Latinos say it, the word drips with desire or anger, or un otro tipo de passion, because passion is not just love, n’ombre, it is a strength added to every emotion. A life sin pasión? No manches! That is a life not worth living.

The passionate Latino – Is it a stereotype? Is it truth? I can only say what I know, and I know Latinos to be a passionate people. It is an admirable trait – one that produces heroes willing to fight and even die for a cause, unforgettable all-consuming loves, and fierce loyalty, but it can also override the prized Anglo virtue of “sensibility”. Pasión is emotion, as puro as 100 proof Tequila, and it can burn in the same way. Pasión does not stop to think. Chale! Pasión acts, consequences be damned.

In a marriage, pasión can be at times romantic, and at other times exhausting. A passionate man is just as likely to be violently hot-tempered as he is to bring you flowers and then kiss you from head to toe. Sometimes you don’t know which you’re going to get.

Sex on the floor

Image source: Shawn Econo

This morning when I came into the kitchen, Suegra excitedly told me about a great pair of shoes, barely used, that she dug out of someone’s trash down the street. My nose instinctively crinkled but I managed to mutter, “Qué bueno.” Suegra could tell my enthusiasm wasn’t sincere, but as usual, she continued talking.

“They had other good things in their trash but a man came by walking his dog and I felt ashamed so I left it and came back home.”

I nodded while waiting for my toast to pop up. Maybe she was expecting me to tell her she had no reason to be ashamed because she looked thoughtful and then asked,

“What do Americans think about people getting things out of the trash?”

My toast popped up.

“Um, they probably think you’re homeless,” I said shrugging.

She shook her head, “He saw me come back to the house, so he knows I have a place to live.”

“That’s not exactly what I meant. What I mean to say is, they would probably think you’re poor… or dirty.”

Suegra sighed. “What a spoiled life Americans live that they can just throw nice things in the trash… You know what else was near the trash can?” she said, getting excited again.

I looked at her blankly.

“A carpet! It was a nice carpet, all rolled up. I should go back and get it!”

I had to think of something to say to discourage her from bringing a filthy rug back to the house. It isn’t like we have any need of it, and she has no room for it in her tiny, cluttered bedroom. I’m not trying to be funny when I tell you, I think she has that hoarder disease. She is way beyond “pack rat”.

“The rug could be dirty,” I said. She didn’t look convinced. “Maybe those people smoke cigarettes. It’ll stink.” … She still seemed defiant. “Maybe those people had sex on that carpet,” I blurted, knowing exactly how to disgust her.

“Ay, no!” she cried. I smiled in satisfaction. “Qué pecado! What sin! No, no, no,” she said, shaking her head, as if trying to dismiss the images that had entered her head. “Sex on the floor! That’s against God!”

I started to laugh. “Against God? What’s wrong with sex on the floor?”

She shook her head even more vigorously, her face pinched as if she’d throw up, disgusted that I found nothing wrong with it. I imagine at this point she realized that her daughter-in-law was defending sex on the floor because, sin of all sins, her daughter-in-law had had sex on the floor… with her son!

“No!” she said, “It’s wrong, it’s wrong. God would condemn sex on the floor. It isn’t right.”

I smirked. “And Adam and Eve? You think they had a bed?”