Monday, April 5, 2010

El Otro Mexico

When we were kids my mom made us sing this song at a church talent show.  We got all dressed up in traditional garb.  My dad played the guitar.  My little brother, Joe, was forced to wear a hard hat and hold a shovel while on stage.  Joe HATES this song. (Of course nobody had to twist MY arm to sing.  I was like "GIVE ME THAT MIKE!"  Front and Center Always, bay-bay!)

In the video above I'm being silly and making light of El Otro Mexico (by Los Tigres Del Norte).  In reality, the song tells the story of my people.  It tells the story of my Abuelito (grandfather) who came to 'The Other Mexico' to earn a living for his family.

It speaks of hard working Mexicans that learned how to progress in another country.  Humble men and women who worked long hours at grueling jobs only to send their earnings to family members in Mexico.

My mom loved this song because it reminded her of her father, Manuel Duarte Lara.

I love it because it reminds me who I am.

My Abuelito was an orphan and sometimes even lived in caves to pan for gold in the mountains of Sonora to earn a living.

When he got married and had children he understood the Love of family and would often say "I would break rocks with my teeth for my children".  He came to The United States so his children would have a better life.  He worked as a humble labor until the day he died.

Regardless of my Abuelito's situation in life he was grateful.  When people are grateful they are also happy.  He was happy to live in a one room adobe shack.  He was happy to live in a cave with a warm fire.  He was happy to finally raise his family in a small house in South Tucson.  And when he passed he had his wife and 8 children surrounding him.  He was happy.  He understood what was truly important.

I suppose I could learn a lesson or two from his example.  I'm having a fit because I'm moving in with my parents temporarily.  I'm crying because someone else will soon enjoy my enormous house.  Well I hope that someone else enjoys scrubbing 5 toilets every week 'cause I am DONE with that!

I get my very obnoxious, hyper sense of humor form my Abuelito.  He laughed at everything.  He especially laughed at my grandmother which really pissed her off. 

"Do you want to see something REALLY funny?" she would say in anger.

"Yes."  He'd respond.

"Well pull down your pants and look between your legs!"


He always laughed at the crazy things she said.  (Trust me, there is more where THAT came from!)  See it's cool 'cause she would also say that to her children when she got mad.  So then in the grand tradition of creative insultas my mother would say it to US!  Coral and I laughed about it tonight, as a matter of fact.

I often feel he is watching over me when I have a hard time.  I know he wants me to laugh at life and not to miss a thing.

I feel SO much better.

PS  Do YOU want to see something funny?... You DOOOO?  Well, pull down your pants and look between your legs... It's a GAS!

BLAHAHAHAHAHAHA! GET IT?  GAS?  'CAUSE GAS COMES FROM... nevermind... I've said too much...


PSS  I take requests if you want me to sing/butcher something for you.  :-D  Don't be shy now!