Posts Tagged ‘spanish’

Interesting take on the spanglish!


An excerpt from his book,offa the website


Spanglish Rule #60: Wherever there’s junction, Spanglish will function.

Listen to Spanglish closely, y te fijarás que a lot of the switching tends to happen justo cuando one phrase or fragment or clause, or other unit of speech or thought, links or transitions to the next. (Think commas, periods, prepositions, and conjunction words!)

Aim to switch at these lingual encrucijadas, intuitively reconciling the grammars del inglés y el español for perfect fit and maximum flow en lo que brincas back and forth. Trust me, una vez que you get the hang of it, you’ll wonder por qué tardaste tanto to start doing it.

Each one of these junctures can function as a revolving door into either language.
Por ejemplo, you can be going along in English, English—blah blah blah—then throw in a pero, which instantly takes you nicely into español. Or you might be speaking en español, español —blah blah blah—y de repente te tiras un “but,” que te conduce muy fácilmente into Esnglish.

Por cierto, that’s exactly how Spanglish actually sounds to people who don’t understand both languages. Half the time it’s just mucho blah blah blah.

Spanglish Rule #33: No te preocupes, be trigger happy!

Language switches are often instinctual or conditioned responses to Spanglish stimuli. Let these triggers ping and pong you between los universos paralelos de English and Spanish.

Estos llamados triggers are found en un sin número de variedades. They can be emotional, psychological, physical, contextual, aesthetic, environmental, or simplemente practical in nature.

Essentially, they cause linguistic reflex actions al estilo Pavlov, just like blinking or salivating or telling a telemarketer que no fastidie más, ¡maldito sea! Often, once a speaker is triggered to switch into English or Spanish, he or she will stay in that language until triggered to switch again.

Veamos algunos ejemplos.

Ejemplo #1

He forgot my birthday. Ni siquiera una llamada.

(emotional trigger, switch prompted by jolt of indignation)

Ejemplo # 2

Yo nunca me pierdo porque I mapquest everything.

(practical trigger, switch prompted by decision to use tech-savvy lingo)*

*Note: the switch into English here is made on the word “I” in anticipation of the internet term “mapquest,” used here as a verb. This Spanglish speaker knew better than to say “yo mapquest everything” or “yo mapquesteo everything”—both of which would have sounded weird and much more unnatural. A good Spanglish ear won’t permit this kind of desgracia. So the speaker switches in such a way to accommodate the target English term and facilitate natural conversational flow via a compatible grammatical route.

I know you had no idea there was that much going on. Es que nosotros Spanglish speakers somos muy complicados!

Ejemplo # 3

That was last week. No me hable de last week.

(psychological trigger, switch prompted by desire to move on from the past/then switch back prompted by inability to let go)

Ejemplo # 4

Tan pronto yo siento dolor, I pop a Tylenol.

(over-the-counter trigger, switch prompted by migraine)

Ejemplo # 5

“¡Mira, ahí lo dice! Wrong Way!”

(visual trigger, switch prompted by wish not to hit oncoming traffic)

Spanglish Rule #110: Thou shalt conjugate English words into Spanish.

This is taking bastardization to the next level, and sin lugar a dudas it is one of the fluent Spanglish speaker’s most basic instincts. Almost as if it were involuntary, nosotros Spanglish speakers kidnapeamos English words from their realms and slap Spanish verb tenses on the end of them, como si no tuviera nada de extraño.

Lo hacemos as if we didn’t know they weren’t palabras españolas to begin with!

Pero esta costumbre makes us more fun to janguear with.

In case you didn’t recognize it, janguear is Spanglish for “to hang out.” We really make this one our own. First we change the spelling to reflect Spanish pronunciación. And then we conjugate the hell out of the bastard, without asking anybody any permission.

Yo jangueo, tú jangueas, él/ella janguea, nosotros jangueamos, ellos janguean. . . . And if addressing upper-crust Spanglishistas, you might even say, vosotros jangueáis.

What’s more, the word has been adopted into the official municipal lexicon in some Los Angeles neighborhoods, where I have actually seen street signs to discourage loitering, that say, “No Janguear.” And notice that janguear is used only for that one connotation of “to hang.” You would never greet anybody with, “Hey, how’s it jangueando?”
Now, you can also conjugate Spanish words to give them English endings, but no examples come to mind. Estoy totally blanking. I’ll have to get pensar-ing on this one.

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