¡Ey! Pórtate Bien, Haz Caso, y Ya No Estés Llorando

Hey!  Behave, Pay Attention, and Stop Crying

Courtesy of El Emilio publication

From across the room, it didn’t matter how far away we were, or where we were, most of the time, all my parents had to do was give us that look.   Without any words, it meant so many things.  A warning basically, letting us know that if we didn’t stop now, we were going to get it later.  My dad was especially scary with his boisterous tone.  My mother, more calm and collected, that is until her nerves got the better of her.  Then nobody within earshot was safe!

In all honesty, they weren’t quite that bad, although I will say, all seven of us did get our fair share of cintarazos over the years – some more than others, yes – and in the end their advertencias now are what you’ll hear filling the air, from every direction, at grandma and grandpa’s whenever all of us get together for anything.  Their scolds perhaps, part of our herencia.

These are just a few of the ones I use all of the time:

  • ¡Si no tienes para todos mejor ni lo saques! – If you don’t have enough for everyone, don’t even bring that out!
  • ¡Si no comes lo que hay es que no tienes hambre!  – If you don’t eat what there is, then you’re not hungry!
  • ¡Horita vas a ver cuando lleguemos a la casa!  – You’re going to get it when we get home!
  • ¡No salgas afuera así, te acabas de bañar!  – Don’t go outside like that, you just took a bath!
  • ¡Vale más que ya no estés llorando!  – You better stop crying!
  • ¡Entiende!  – Understand what I’m telling you!
  • ¡Te estoy viendo¡ – I’m watching you!
  • ¡Haz caso!  – Pay attention!
  • ¡Pórtate bien!  – Behave!
  • ¡Ya párale!  – Stop it!
  • ¡Ey!  – Hey!**

**My dad’s personal favorite, I think because of its short and swift delivery.  We’d feel ourselves shivering every time that ‘Ey’ would come torpedoing in our direction.

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6 thoughts on “¡Ey! Pórtate Bien, Haz Caso, y Ya No Estés Llorando

  1. Dude! I say the second one to my kids all the time. Except, y’know, in English. I should say it in Spanish now and then, just to mix it up. 🙂

    1. Matthew, thanks for following Simon over here…you could not be following a greater guy. And Simon, hermano, we missed you over here at Juan of Words, lol. But seriously, I love to yell at kids in Spanish that don’t fully understand what I’m saying, especially when they’re being extra bad…the look of confusion on their faces stops them dead in their tracks. Try it, it works!!

      Tracy, I love the Salvadoran ‘cipote.’ We used to watch a kid in our apartment whose mom would spank him outside in front of us if he was misbehaving, all the time yelling ‘andale cipote!’ Once, they’d leave we’d take turns imitating them, lol. Yet, if we hid the belt from my mother, she’d just find the next thing within reach (usually a shoe or chancla) to spank us…Ah, good times 😉

  2. LOL – “¡Ey!” is my husband’s favorite. When he says that, everyone runs for cover.

    My parents threatened to spank a lot but rarely followed through. (I think they probably should have spanked me more. Maybe I wouldn’t have gotten into half the trouble I did if I knew I had something coming.)

    My Mom did keep a wooden spoon. That thing hurt. My sisters and I would hide it, throw it away, break it – she always bought a new one.

    As for how I discipline, the chancla rules in this house and everything I learned about yelling at the kids in Spanish, I’ve learned from Suegra. LOL.

    Niño! Haga caso!
    Portate bien, si no….{insert threat here}
    Cipote! No seas travieso!
    Apartanse niños!
    Te voy a pegar duro, cipote, vas a ver!

  3. Well, the only Spanish words I know came from you, so my knowledge is limited to vegetables and getting the kids in ship-shape! My mom would use our middle names if we were in serious trouble. And my dad would say, “Ay yay yay yay yay.” Try it with a Jewish east coast accent!

  4. Ja,ja!! Me he matado de la risa!! This is excellent!! I use variations of all those scolds with my kids, the same way my mom did with us. A fave: Ahora vas a ver (equivalent of Horita vas a ver cuando lleguemos a casa) mainly used when we’re not home or we’re in the presence of guests, etc…
    My mom used to hit as con una correa. I still remember how much it hurt, but the truth is that most of the time, all it took was una mirada.
    I don’t know why I’d never read your blog before, but I have Tracy – another one of my favorite writers – to thank for it! Me encanta como escribes y lo que escribes!

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