Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Guanajuato, Mex -- It's What I've Been Saying

I am going to post a forum quote. This person says in this quote what I've been saying for years. Actually, what I've been writing for years and have been called a racist for it and a Mexophobe. (That's like the equally ridiculous appellation, 'homophobe' only with reference to Mexicans, obviously.)

In talks with Mexicans here I am often told that the Gringolandian is not just clueless but doesn't get what it is they need to get in order not to be clueless about the culture. I believe this to be true. For them to call one a racist for saying what I am about to post below is a devolution into absurdity. They truly know nothing about the culture. Truly!

And, Gringolandians will immediately accuse someone pointing these less than admirably things about culture as "Mexican Knocking." They will never deal with the hypothesis of your arguments, the contentions, they will simply dismiss you as "Mexican bashing."


This post had no punctuation so is a bit hard to read...


i've heard from others living in Mexico that the locals do not want to
disappoint you or make you unhappy, so for example if u ask for
directions, they will give you directions, even if they are wrong. go
figure! what it does is postpone your unhappiness to a time when that
person is no longer there

i had a friend born and raised in Guadalajara who was living and
working in Houston, TX by choice. one time she promised to take me to
the doctor when i had a great deal of pain from an auto accident, there
was no bus service to the dr's office, my car had been totalled, i had
no new car, and i needed to get a prescription for pain meds; the
doctor in the ER had failed to prescribe anything. the night before
she was to drive me to the doctor, she was giving me a ride home from
work at 2 a.m. and another friend of hers was riding in the front with
her; she turned and promised her that she would pick her up and take
her somewhere the next day at 2 p.m., exactly the same time she was
supposed to take me to the doctor. sure enuf, i did not see her again
for about a week

she also talked about fun things we would do together the following week, and they never came to pass either

i confronted her about this pattern, she told me that everyone does
that in Mexico, and no one thinks anything about it. it's just a part
of the culture. she was actually angry that i took her seriously. she
said it's just a way of being with another person -- u keep it light,
fun, warm, pleasant, enjoyable. she said no one takes it seriously

about 5 years ago i was a member of an e-group for ESL teachers
living in Mexico, to get a feel for that to see if i wanted to do that
to make a living in Mexico. a number of the teachers [mostly US] who
had lived there for at least 5 years said the same thing: it is common
to promise almost anything to someone in their presence in order to
make them happy, and often the person promising has no intent of
actually doing it. it's like them saying they will be there at 3:00
p.m. for something, and they show up at 6 p.m. or the next day.
everyone does it, it's part of the culture. one of the teachers said
that the Mexicans have a face they put on for the public, and then they
have a face [their real selves] that their family knows

i think Sandy is right; find out what you need to know from a
gringo, a non-Mexican, who has lived in the area you are interested in
for a while and knows the ropes. i'm not being racist; this is my
experience with my friend of 2 years from Guadalajara

it's just part of the culture. enjoy the people but don't expect more than they want to give. that was my experience with her.

Jean Marie Greene


Crimes and misdemeanors: Staying safe in San Miguel
Is SMA still safe, or falling prey to drug dealers and thugs?

By Anne Nicolai
August 11, 2009

Knowledge is power: Spanish-speaking residents are safer

Across the board, every official interviewed for this article agreed that one of the best ways for foreigners to provide for our personal safety is to learn the language of the country that we’re living in. They point out that Spanish speakers have an easier time getting to know their neighbors and the local police. Knowing the language also helps when calling for help or reporting a crime.

In fact, the author’s calls to the various emergency telephone numbers prove this point: on two different days, at two different times of day,...there were no English-speaking operators.

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