Spanish Sunday Nights: Pulling An All-Nighter…Despierta Toda La Noche…

 SPANISH SUNDAY NIGHT’s entry for tonight:  English Translation is Below…

Mientras me quedo aquí en la clínica para acompañar a mi mama por la noche, me sorprende el hecho que no me he dormido por 24 horas ya…me desperté ayer a las 6 de la mañana para “trabajar mi turno” con Mom…


 Mientras mi mama se duerme, aquí me la paso pensando en todas las decisiones que hay que tomar para el futuro, decisiones que hay que hacer hoy mismo, decisiones que no debo de hacer sin nada de dormir. Cuantas veces paso mi mama por lo mismo? Pensando en sus decisiones mientras nosotros dormíamos? Cuales decisiones tenía que hacer? Que fue lo que la preocupaba durante la noche?

Cuando aún estaba en la universidad en Sacramento, me pase muchas noches sin dormir, esas sesiones de estudiar por las madrugadas que pase por tonta, por dejar todas mis obligaciones hasta el último segundo! Muchas veces, me confieso, me pase la noche entera en la parranda y me dormía tranquilamente una vez que salía el sol. La única vez que tome una clase en un sábado la tuve que dejar porque siempre llegaba media dormida, bien desvelada y nada de responsable.

Hoy en día, yo sé lo que me pasa cuando no duermo como es debido: me vuelvo toda necia, peleonera, y chillona. Si yo misma no me aguanto…QUIEN más me va a aguantar con ese carácter? Pero, por el lado positivo, me he fijado que las horas de la madrugada son mis horas más creativas, que cuando tengo que entregar una propuesta para algún proyecto, que suelo desarrollar todo durante la madrugada, cuando todo es calmado, donde no me interrumpa nada o nadie, cuando estoy muy motivada … bueno, hasta que me caigo del cansancio!

English Translation:  Pulling An All-Nighter…

As I sit here keeping watch over my Mom in the clinic, I am tripping on the fact that I have had absolutely NO sleep for 24 hours now…I woke up yesterday about 6am to “work” the morning shift with Mom…

While Mom sleeps, I sit here thinking about all of the decisions that I need to make for my future, decisions that must be made by today, decisions that should not be made when one is so sleep-deprived.   How many times did Mom stay up all night watching over us as we slept? What decisions did she need to make? What worried her in the night?

I used to pull all-nighters quite frequently when I was at Sac State back in the day…a lot of times, the all-night study sessions were the result of my absolute procrastination and leaving everything for the last minute. Many times I remember staying out all night partying and going to sleep when the sun came out, I took one Saturday class in my life and had to drop it because I was always rushing to class from a nightclub toda dormida LOL.

I have discovered that when I’m sleep-deprived that it’s best for me to stay away from people because I tend to throw fits and whine – if I get on my own nerves ya me imagino how I am around others. But it’s also when I’m sleep-deprived that I find that I’m super-creative. I have come up with cool proposals, wrote some fun stuff, planned out goals, and was very motivated…that is, until I dropped from exhaustion!

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The Comadre Chronicles II – First Weekend at 25th and C and “La Pipa”

The Comadre Chronicles – Our First Weekend at 25th & C and “La Pipa”

More about my experiences on my own for the first time at Sac State back in the day…always funny and always something to learn!  LOL

For about the first month or so, Nisie, Mary, and I would go home for the weekend.    The first time that we spent the weekend at the apartment at 25th and C, it was a really quiet night.  As it was late,  we settled in for the night.

First, we hear a noise…and then we hear this creaking sound…it was slow at first and then it was faster and louder.   I remember REALLY being freaked out but not wanting to show it in front of Nisie and Mary.  Especially, since I was constantly teased about being from the “rancho” and afraid of everything.   So here I am, trying not to show how nervous I am, and then Mary and Nisie start getting nervous.  You can just imagine, we worked each other up into hysterics thinking,”omg!  Someone is trying to break into our apartment!” “What should we do?  Should we stay here? Should we go?”

Instead of calling the police, oh waaait! As I recall, we did not yet have a phone, so las tres tontas decide to risk their lives, leave the apartment, get into Nisie’s car, and make the drive in search of a telephone.  Once we got to a phone, did we call the police?  No, we called Jorge and Mario, our friends who lived a few blocks away.

Here come Jorge and Mario ‘to the rescue’ to check out the apartment to make sure that some loco has not invaded our space.  But not before telling us, or as I recall, lecturing these 3 women to always be careful, not to be ”pendejas” and about always calling the POLICE first instead of them!

Turns out there was no random vato in our “spot”, it was the sound of the folks in the apartment next to us walking around!  I don’t know about the girls, but I felt like a complete idiot from the rancho!  I also felt extreme relief knowing that we were safe and that these guys were around!   We also received a gift from Mario that night, a small steel pipe for protection; this pipe also had a name, which is so non-PC (politically correct) that I cannot tell you what it is … and you know what?  That pipe has accompanied me on my many moves throughout the years and, thank God, I never had to use it.

Lesson learned?  Call the police first in case of any emergency, real or imagined.  Nothing wrong with keeping that “pipa” around just in case!

 

Spanish Sunday Nights: Soy Trilingue

A little late in submitting my Spanish Sunday Night blog entry … the English translation is below:

Soy Trilingüe:  Hablo en ingles, español, y en Spanglish!

Ahora que estoy estudiando, de nuevo, para tomar el examen Estatal para Interpretes, me la paso aprendiendo nuevas palabras y me pongo a pensar en el momento que comencé a hablar en español…bueno, disque en español porque fue una mezcla “mocho” tratando de buscar la manera de sonar natural, que mi vocabulario fuera fluido, donde no tendría que pensar en lo que quería decir…

Al escucharme hablar hoy en día,  a mucha gente le parece increíble que, en mi casa, no nos crecimos hablando en español – fue puro ingles.   Y bien me acuerdo, que de vez en cuando, algún familiar me diría algo como “porque no sabes hablar en español?”   A mí me daba mucha vergüenza – y no porque mis papas no nos hablaron en español sino porque yo quería aprender a hablar bien.   Estoy eternamente agradecida con mi Mama – siempre nos hablo y nos enseno la gramática correcta en ingles y nosotros los 5 siempre hemos podido hablar y escribir muy muy bien en ingles.  Creo que fue a los 13 años que decidí aventarme a la lumbre y hablar en español, saliera como saliera.

Mi Tío Pascual (q.e.p.d.) fue el #1 en darme “carria” por mi manera particular de hablar en español.  Una vez estábamos en una fiesta familiar y me dijo, “si tanto sabes de español, entonces deletréame la palabra ‘Tzintzuntzan’ y lo hice perfectamente!  También me atreví a decirle que yo iba a aprender a hablar el español un día y que si quería ‘bailar’ conmigo, que aprendiera a hablar en ingles!   Me cerré los ojos esperando que me reganara o  algo así, pero no, simplemente se rio y nunca jamás me volvió a decir nada al respecto.  Pero si contaba la historia de “Tzintzuntzan” de vez en cuando con una sonrisa!

Como hubiera querido poder haber conversado mas con mi abuela, Ma’Lupita, sin duda la mujer más chistosa y única que he conocido en mi vida.  Porque yo SE que nos hubiéramos divertido mucho – ella con sus locuras y yo aprendiendo y riéndome.    Cuando sentí que ya estaba aprendiendo a hablar más español, ella ya estaba enferma del cáncer y, para la gran tristeza de todo el Rancho, falleció.

Más de una persona me ha dicho que tengo un buen sentido de humor y que se chismear y contar historias muy bien ya sea en ingles o en español.   El hecho de que pueda hacerlo en español se lo debo a mi papa, Mike Torres, a mi Mama Lupita, todos mis tíos del Rancho y una que otra persona quien nos llego de visita de Michoacán con su manera de hablar tan divertido y singular!  

Si tengo que hacerlo, puedo conversar inteligentemente completamente en español o en ingles;  pero a mí me encanta hablar en mi idioma principal, Spanglish, una mezcla de las dos!  Mucha gente dice que no es idioma oficial, que esto es hablar ‘mocho’, que no sabemos hablar ni una ni la otra, pero no es así:  es un producto de los dos mundos donde siempre he vivido y me siento en casa dondequiera que este!

ENGLISH TRANSLATION:  I’m Trilingual:  I speak Spanish, English, and Spanglish!

Now that I’m studying, again, for the State Interpreter Exam, I am constantly learning new words and it got me thinking to the time where I started to speak in Spanish…well, it wasn’t really Spanish as much as it was a mixture that everyone would call “mocho”, I was trying to find the way to sound natural, trying to find a way that my vocabulary would be fluid and natural, where I didn’t have to think about what I wanted to say, that I would just be able to say it.

When people hear me speak Spanish today, they think that it’s incredible that we did not grow up speaking in Spanish – English was spoken at home.  And I remember that more than one family member would tell me, “why don’t you speak Spanish?”   I would get really embarrassed, but not for the reason that you would think, not because my parents didn’t speak to us in Spanish but because the Type A in me wanted to learn to speak well.   I’m eternally grateful to my Mom Margaret Torres – she always spoke to us and taught us her correct, flawless, English grammar thus the 5 of us were always able to speak, read, and write very very well in English.  I think that I was around 13 or so when I decided to go for it and learn how speak Spanish, and speak no matter how it came out.

My Tio Pascual (RIP) was the number 1 person who teased me constantly about my way of speaking in Spanish!  I remember we were at a Ranch party one time and he starts up, he tells me, “if you’re so good in Spanish, then spell this word for me, “Tzintzuntzan”; which I did, and perfectly!  So then I got all bold and told him that I was going to speak really good Spanish one day and that if he wanted to make it a fair fight, that he should learn how to speak English!  Man I closed my eyes just waiting for him to go off on me but, to my surprise, he just started laughing and he never teased me again although he did bring up the ‘Tzintzuntzan’ incident up from time to time with a smile on his face!

How I wish that I could have been able to talk more with my grandmother, Ma’Lupita, who remains by far the most unique and funniest woman I have ever met.  Because I so KNOW that we would have had a blast – she with her hilarious self and me laughing and learning.  When I felt that I was learning how to really speak in Spanish, she was already sick with cancer and, to the Ranch’s great sadness still, she passed away.

More than one person has told me that I have a good sense of humor and that I can tell stories and do the gossip thing really well whether in English or in Spanish.  The fact that I can do it at all is because of my Dad Mike Torres, to Mama Lupita, all of the aunts/uncles on the Ranch, and random folks who would visit from Michoacán with their fun and unique way of expressing themselves!  

Now if I HAVE to do it, I can converse intelligently in English or in Spanish; but my favorite mode of expression is in what I consider my primary language, Spanglish, a mixture of both.  Lots of people go crazy saying that it is not an official language, that it is a bastardization of the language, “mocho” if you will, that we cannot speak one language or the other, but it is not like that:  it is a product of the two worlds where I have always lived in and that allows me to be at home wherever I am.

The Comadre Chronicles I – The Bra Story

The Comadre Chronicles I – ‘The Bra Story”

Everyone should have that one friend who is fearless, who has no shame, in the best sense of the word, who teaches you about life like no one else can…aaaand, who can have fun with you like no one else can!   I was super-blessed to have had two of them when I first moved out on my own.

Upon first glance, back in the day, my Comadre Mary, Denise AKA Nisie and I were the three people LESS likely to get along, much less be friends.    I don’t even remember how we decided to be roommates at Sac State back in the day, but it was apparent early on, that we were kindred spirits, so much more alike than I could have ever imagined!  The pic above features us 3 with my ‘brother’ Jorge taken at my sis’ wedding some years after we went our separate ways.  I always said that I wanted to put some of our experiences in writing … these experiences will, undoubtedly, include more of our friends, whether they choose to identify themselves, is all on them.

I always wished that I could have had a book to read that would teach me how to live on my own for the first time – especially as I was teased big time for being a tad square and from the rancho LOL!  I’m not talking about just any old book, but one that had that talked about these types of experiences that happen when you first move out …with that Latino flavor that I could so relate to … since I have yet to find that book, I’ll start putting our experiences in writing and see if any of ya’ll can relate…and, if you cannot, at least you can have a good laugh!

“The Bra Story”

While we were attending Sac State, we lived in the Midtown area and our place at 300 – 25th Street, corner of 25th and C, became famous, or maybe infamous, for the parties that we used to have there.  Sac State peeps:  I’m sure you recognize this place!   I am still amazed at the amount of people we could fit in that apartment.   Mary, Nisie, and I would clear the place out of furniture and Nisie was always in charge of putting the music together – I remember she used to always ask me to borrow my stuff en espanol as she got stuff together.   Mary was usually the one to put the word out – si no me equivoco/if I’m not mistaken, girl even made flyers…she always got everyone to attend!

The three of us got to know LOTS of folks right away once we got to the University and, as I recall, this was one of the first parties that we held at our place.   A lot of our new friends showed up to the party and, while we didn’t see anything wild happening that first party, we did see quite a few people ‘hooking up’ that night and taking off.

As we were cleaning up after the party, we found this random bra in our bedroom.  Well, I assumed that it was Nisie’s so I toss it onto her bed, the next day, I find the bra on my bed, Nisie assuming that it was mine and on and on.  One day, I tell Nisie, “This is not MY bra”, to which Nisie responds, “well, it’s NOT mine!” and then we both respond in unison busting up laughing, “Well we know IT’S NOT MARY’S!!”   Why did we laugh?  Because my Comadre, God love her, probably wears the next few sizes away from a training bra and she would be the first one to tell you this along with a million other  hilarious things LOL.

We eventually did figure out who the bra belonged to, and this individual can identify herself by responding to this blog LOL.   What makes us laugh, to this day, is the sight of that “chichero”  Comadre-speak for bra – making the rounds from one bed to the next, each one of us thinking that it belonged to the other!

What did I learn from this?  That when one leaves clothes behind ‘en casa ajena’ somewhere other than home, that s/he should be prepared for it to be ‘on’ and to be teased mercilessly from that moment on!  Believe me, we STILL bring this story up and tease this girl TO THIS DAY…