Juan of Words




No seas orgulloso, ven a saludar
I hated these words.  Every time people would come over they’d make me come out, smile, shake their hand, answer a few questions, and sit in the living room with them.  To be amable, what one should always be…aside from humilde.

I really couldn’t have cared less to be either.

Yeah I’d hear my own name being called from the living room, first in speaking tone, then progressively louder, until it was a full-fledged yell, but the last thing I wanted to do was acknowledge any recognition.  I was asleep, taking a shower, listening to music, reading a book, doing homework, anything to not have to come out.  But then, there’d come my brothers and sisters hurry up, they’re calling you…you’re not asleep, stop acting…I’m going to tell mom…APA!! The latter would send me racing into the living room with my best fake smile on my face.  ¿Apoco este es Juanito? ¡Qué gordo se está poniendo! ¿Pues que come Juanito?

At these questions I’d smile and say nothing.  Just sit down and wait to be dismissed…or for the first opportunity to make a run for it, usually pretending to be called by one of my siblings in the next room: Huh?  I’m coming.  Hold on real quickhorita vengo!

It wasn’t anything personal, or even that I wanted to be sangron or orgulloso, just that hearing other people say what was already in my own head was uncomfortable and embarrassing.

Eventually, though, I figured it out.  I didn’t have to come out if I didn’t want to, what was said to me didn’t have to be taken a pecho all of the time, and if I wanted to I could be as much of a smart ass as the next kid.  The funny thing is after I figured this out I didn’t have to hide myself away anymore.  No seas orgulloso, ven a saludar, now I’m the one saying this.


This post is dedicated to my friend @customcreative who shared this colorful dicho with me, from her own family’s usage of refranes y dichos.  Here it is meant as an expression of exclamation.

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