Thursday, February 03, 2005

¿Cómo se dice "get off my ass" en español?

My gray matter checked out hours ago and what little white matter I have left is vanishing quickly. I have a meeting in the morning I’ve been prepping for all week. Dude’s from Madrid. He speaks English but he’s only been speaking it a few years so as a courtesy I subject him to my back alley, “learned it from a hood rat named Juan,” Spanish. Lucky him.

We’ve talked on the phone several times and I’m having a hard time adjusting to his accent. Spaniards near Madrid speak Castilian which sounds different from the Tex-Mex bullshit I use. Not only do they use the “vosotros” form of the verb, which is all but gone from Latin America, not to mention my pea-sized brain, but they speak with what sounds like a lisp.

“¡Hola, amigo! ¿Qué patha?” or “Tengo thinco dolareth.”

I went over everything tonight that I will present to him and jotted down notes in Spanish. This way if I have a brain fart during the meeting and suddenly can’t remember the Spanish translation for “thank you for trusting in me” or “lick my nut you cross-eyed immigrant” I can refer to my pad. It’s all there.

By the way, did anyone else know that amniotic fluid completely recycles itself every three hours? You should check with me more often. I’m a fucking fountain of knowledge over here, just waiting to spew shit all over the front of your blue dress so you can share it with the world. And let’s not forget about the cheesy coating which can be located within the folds, cracks and crevices of a newborn infant. Yum. Got milk?

Back to the Spanish, because I wasn’t fucking finished before you distracted me with the baby bullshit, it’s a state of mind. It’s not just a different vocabulary, but an entirely different way of looking, thinking and understanding. If you are lucky, like Jasmine, you say “tengo suerte” which translates as “I have luck.” Once I get into that frame of mind, I’m good to go without a lot of thought. It just falls out naturally. I even think in Spanish. I’ve dreamed in Spanish before. I dreamed I was in Mexico trying to barter with a local man, my burro for his daughter. One nice ass for another. He wasn’t going for it.

Back to my point and quit with the fucking topic changes. I’ve got a moral. Note, I didn’t say morals. Totally different. In any language.

So I’m sitting in my office this evening, alone. Jasmine and I took separate cars because we knew I’d be late working on this meeting. I’d been thinking in Spanish for about three hours and was armpit deep in the language when something appeared in my doorway.

I looked up and saw the cleaning lady standing there in her yellow smock with her hand on the handle of a vacuum cleaner.

“Do you mind if I vacuum now?”

I just stared. ¿Qué?