a la madre

Mexi-Vocabulario: ¡Madre!

So this week’s Mexi-Vocabulario is completely the creative work of one of my readers.  This individual asked to be identified only as JTO, and a couple of weeks ago had sent me this very comprehensive list of all the things the the word Madre means to us Mexicans.  Sure, the immediate translation is mother… but there is so much more to this palabra!  I had not posted the list until now because I was awaiting my reader’s approval to do so.  I have only altered the list by simplifying the formatting and adding the English references on the left.  If you have any more usages for the word ¡Madre! please leave them in the comments below, or send me your word of choice.  I’d love to share it in a future post! And JTO, thank you once again!

the many meanings of the word madre in Spanish

The many meanings of the word "madre" in Spanish. Some good. Some bad.

TODO LO QUE SIGNIFICA LA MADRE PARA LOS MEXICANOS…

Happiness:  ¡Qué a toda Madre!

Geographic location:  ¿Dónde queda esa Madre?

Physical location:  ¿Dónde está esa Madre?

Dietary reference:  ¡¡Trágate esa Madre ya!!

Criticism:  ¡Qué poca Madre tienes…!

Skepticism:  No te creo ni Madres.

Vengeance:  ¡Vámos a darle en la Madre!

Accident:  Se dío en la Madre.

Visual reference:  ¡No se ve ni madres!

Sense of Smell:  ¡Huele a Madres!

Speculation:  ¿Qué madres es eso?

Superlative:  ¡A todísima Madre!

Expression of joy:  ¡¡¡Está Poca Madre!!!

Surprise:  ¡¡¡Madresss!!!

Speeding reference:  ¡Va hecho Madres!

Ego reference:  No me dío ni Madres…

Sense of Taste:  ¡Eso sabe a Madres! (not good)

Past reference:  No tuviste Madre (could be “you had no shame”)

Action:  ¡Vámos hacer esa Madre!

Violent action:  ¡¡Le rompiste toditita su Madre!!!

Motivating/Rushing:  ¡¡Andale con esa Madre!!

Disorder reference:  ¿¡Qué desmadre te traes!?

Insult:  ¡Vales para pura Madre!

When swearing:  Por mi Madre.

Operational reference:  ¿Y esta Madre cómo funciona??

Failure:  ¡¡Ya valió Madres…!!

Confrontational:  ¡Qué poca Madre tienes!

Negative, as in NO:  ¡¡¡Ni Madres!!!

I’m always on the hunt for new mexi-vocabulario.
What other words would you like me to include in the mexi-vocabulario?  If you have one that you would recommend please share it with me here.

Writer’s Disclaimer: When I say mexi-vocabulario I don’t necessarily mean these words are exclusively Mexican, or only used by Mexicans.  This is simply an expression of how they were introduced to me in our Mexican Spanish.

More Mexi-Vocabulario 

Mexi-Vocabulario: ¡Chale! ¡Huevón! ¡A Toda Madre!

This one is three-fer… as in three for one!  You know us mexicanos love a great deal.  Well, you all have been sharing so many great mexi-vocabulario words lately that it only made sense to do more than just one on this time around.

So, consider this the “blue-light” special of mexi-vocabulario!

Cholo says anything for Salinas

¡Chale! He messed up his car for Salinas!

First up, we’ve got ¡Chale!  The Urban Dictionary defines it as “a term used to show disagreement or disapproval of something or some idea.  Means the same thing as ‘hell no’ or ‘hell na.’”  Supposedly, it was a originated in the southwestern United States, but can now be heard anywhere Chicanos or Chicanas live.  Myself, I don’t really use this one.  Unless I’m trying to be funny…  I associate the word with more a “cholo culture” and just don’t use it.  Though I do love the line, which I think I’ve partially made up: “Chale, that’s Salinas!”

huevon man sleeps on couch with remote on his belly

¡Huevón!

¡Huevón!  This word on the other hand is engraved deep in my mind somewhere, locked up forever in the same place where echale ganas and hay que ser acomedido reside as constant reminders of my youth.  My father would  get so upset when he thought my mother was calling him ¡huevón! in the literal sense.  The word huevo means egg, so you can make the connection there.  When he knew it was all in good fun, it didn’t really bother him at all.  A mi, they would call me huevón whenever I didn’t want to do something, when I’d lay on the sofa all day watching TV, when I’d call in sick just for the hell of it, and when I’d forever procrastinate whatever I had to do at the moment.  Come to think of it… things haven’t really changed that much over the years.  No wonder I’m scarred for life with this word!

gloria trevi a toda madre

¡A Toda Madre!

Finally, ¡A toda madre! - more phrase than word really, is another great one to throw around with the guys.  ¡Sí hombre la fiesta estuvo a toda madre!  It means  great, awesome, very good, as in that something was very enjoyable or successful.  More formally, the Urban Dictionary offers: “Mexican slang that means something is totally awesome.  Often abbreviated, especially in graffiti as ATM.”  Coincidentally, this phrase always makes me think of the somewhat more versatile a la madre.  As Gloria Trevi demonstrates in her mega hit by the same name (below), a la madre can be either really good or really bad:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zMBpMNgcDxE&ob]

I’m always on the hunt for new mexi-vocabulario.

What other words would you like me to include in the mexi-vocabulario?  If you have one that you would recommend please share it with me here.  

Writer’s Disclaimer: When I say mexi-vocabulario I don’t necessarily mean these words are exclusively Mexican, or only used by Mexicans.  This is simply an expression of how they were introduced to me in our Mexican Spanish.

Madre De Todas Madres: El Sexo Femenino y Sus Virtudes

Paragon: Rostro de Mujer

My mother has always had a saying: el que lucha encuentra.  For a long time I thought it was exclusive to her, that she was the only one in my life who felt that way, that somehow, for some reason, she had had this ingrained in her mind and heart, and that while others surely possessed this same mentality, nobody held on to it as a belief as deeply as she did.  How could I not?  She was the matriarch in our familia. Nothing ever happened that she didn’t know about.  None of us could make a move without her finding out one way or another, sooner or later.  Never was there a problem that she didn’t have a solution to.  Everything was possible to her with a little faith and a lot of ganas… to luchar.

Save for a couple of times, and these were later in my teenage years, I never witnessed her in an utter state of disillusion or despair.  She had plenty of reason to give up.  We were poor. We were alone.  We were living in a place no one else would ever want to live.  A shack basically, with no heating or air conditioning, an outhouse for a restroom, no hot water, no beds for us to sleep in, a cooler for a refrigerator, and holes in our aluminum roof that made it impossible to keep the floors dry when it was raining.  Why she didn’t give up, I still don’t fully understand, but I am thankful everyday that she didn’t and that she pulled us through… a veces a puros pleitos, but she did.

Now I know I’m not the only one with such the gran fortuna to have had such a mujer, hecha y derecha as my mother, and if you’ve got stories to tell, I’d love to hear them.  Still, more than just that, today, I’m beginning to realize this particular trait is one the female sex possesses and develops more often than not, and most definitely much better than us guys.  Time and time again it has presented itself to me in very humbling ways that have often left me at once speechless and sometimes even at the brink of tears.  Ya sé, que desgracia… ¡soy un chillón! Pero ¿qué le voy hacer?

I have felt it in my sisters’ hugs, their ability to tell me things without really saying them to me in words, my eldest sister’s way of being mother to me while never ceasing to be the sister who understands things my mother never would, my wife’s ability to make me feel better when I feel the world is crashing down on me, the love they all demonstrate to each other, so openly and without any inhibitions, the way us members of the sexo fuerte never could, the manner in which they all love their kids, above and beyond everything else, and at the cost of doing whatever it takes to take care of them and prepare them for a better tomorrow.

I thank God everyday she didn’t give up.

I hope the rest of the women in my life do the same.

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