Friday, December 01, 2006

Like Jew for You

by Lydia Cortes

They speak funny. Jew. Like jew for you. (And tea for two? If they can read, they’d probably say te-ah for twoe...) Sank you...no, they’d say sank jew meaning thank you (it is not the keeping an individual of a certain religious affiliation underwater). They say Jell-o for yellow. San Gweebean for Thanksgiving. Did you ever have the pleasure of hearing one of them say to you, “Mery Crihmah to jew?” ‘Tis after all, their seesong to be yoly. And it’s too much the way they manage to get most of our sayings wrong...why can’t they get it right? Like, neber say eber. The other day on the subway, one of the more in your face types says to me, “Gwhy jew loo’ a me all phony, man?” Trying, I’m sure, to say ‘funny’. That happen las’ Sersday...you can guess, no, that he meant the fifth day of the week?

And they talk so damn loud – on the subways, busses, in the street – as if they weren’t out in public, with the rest of us...as if we wanted to hear them. Even if we could understand their corrupted Spanish, I’m sure the topics they pick are trivial...like who’s screwing who in the telenovelas most of their women are glued to their 46 inch screens (gotten on credit) each night...or else the subject could be who fucked who up (they do love their knives, their pistols) outside the project they live. Oh yeah, quite a bit of violence in those races...but you probably knew that already from just living in this city. You’re lucky if you don’t have to live too near their neighborhoods...they do have a knack for picking the worst ones...though we are slowly but surely taking a lot of them over. Even Bushwick’s turning now. You should’ve seen Williamsburg fifteen years ago.

How about the way they dress – especially when they’re “dressing up”? Especially the older ones. Gaudy shiny shoes, gaudy shiny dresses, gaudy shiny suits – lots of thin polyester, lots of rhinestones and fake patent leather, mucho chiny, man! (chi like in hi, ny like in knee). And did you ever see their little kids going to school for the Christmas party, or the last day before summer break? The little girls in little plastic high heels and over the top lace in strange pastels...orange, lime greens, lemon yellows...like they’re doing a poor man’s quincenera.

They go on and on about how they love their kids. A little too much, the way I look at it. All that hugging, all that kissing. All that over protection. You’d think that there was something wrong with our public schools, the way a lot of these parents worry about their kids. I can’t blame teachers. They just do what they do to keep these over emotional kids in control. The parents should happy, anyway. If you want a quality school, send your kids to private school. Most of these people, I’ll bet, didn’t even have schools in their own countries.

Most of these people, I’ll bet don’t even belong here. They’re not legal. The Mexicans, Hondurans, Ecuadorians, the ones from El Salvador...I can’t even remember all those countries where they say they speak Spanish. Some of them actually speak Indian tongues...can you imagine that...they don’t even speak the language of the countries they’ve sneaked out of! Immigration laws...we’ve got to get better ones...get a lot of these people back where they belong.

Heard a bit of a bad news the other day, though...did you know that Puerto Ricans are actually American citizens? I mean US citizens? Yeah...something about a Jones Act passed in the ‘50's? Wow, what a shock...guess we’re stuck with them. Unless someone can come up with a better solution?

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