Tuesday, October 30, 2007

You said what?

It's always been a fear of mine that I would say something horrible in a another language just by mispronouncing something.

For me, it was speaking Navajo to Mr. Salt a few weeks ago.

As I said to Diva in the comments below, Navajo (Dine bizaad) is a tonal language, meaning that where you put the emphasis in a good portion of the words can totally change the meaning of the word. Say it one way, it means this. Say it another, it means that.

So, when we were at the softball game I referenced a few posts ago, there was a grill fired up to cook burgers. Mr. Salt referenced the smoke coming our way in Navajo. Repeating him, I attempted to say the word for smoke. Mr. Salt immediately corrects me.

What I said wasn't smoke.

I had said shit.

Ah, for the joys of learning a new language.

It does has it fun moments. For instance, you can talk about people that give us evil looks (Angry Black Cat referenced this in her blog), and they can be totally confused because they expect Spanish(due to Mr. Salt's coloring). It always throws them for a loop.

Saying "over there" in Navajo can be fun too. The distance to get to o'er there where something is can change from two feet to ten miles depending how long you draw out a certain constant.

And, of course, misspeaking the language isn't always limited to me. Mr. Salt says that when he was little and learning the language, SaltMama had sent him over to his grandma's house for onions. So when he gets there, he tries to ask for onions using Navajo.

He didn't say onion. He said the vulgar word for a woman's lower anatomy.

So grandma was offended and was mad at SaltMama for teaching Mr. Salt dirty words.

Oh, and Mr. Salt's first learned English word?



Saturday, October 27, 2007

Tales from Dinetah: Sleeping Man and Sleeping Woman

This is the first of a few tales that come from Mr. Salt family in Dinetah. Dinetah is Mr. Salt's home, the Navajo reservation.

Mornings in the Mr. Salt/DineBoo residence go something like this:

DineBoo: Get up! Sleeping Woman was crawling all over you!
Mr. Salt: I know. She had me wrapped up pretty tight. I had to get Sleeping Man to come get her off me.

When you have trouble waking up in the morning (or just waking up period like I do), it is said that Sleeping Man (or Woman if you're a guy) has you all wrapped up tight and is not letting you go.

Sleeping Man and Sleeping Woman are said to be foul, smelly people. Just really rank and dirty. Their breath stinks (morning breath) and they have matty hair (bed hair). That dried, crusty matter in your eyes after you wake up either dried drool from your respected Sleeping person or something else entirely. Mr. Salt can get creative with what that 'something else' is, so I'll just leave it as other body fluids and continue on.

Sleeping Man is always trying to get with Sleeping Woman, but if she rejects him, he'll find someone else to be with for the night. Same with Sleeping Woman. So you (or your partner) need to shake him off and chase him away.

When you're waking somebody up you need to shake them hard so that Sleeping Man will go away and find another person to be with for rest the night. The harder it is to wake the person up, the harder you need the shake the person awake. You might say some really gross things (like Sleeping Man's drool is all over them) so that they'll wake up faster. Mr. Salt says this works great with kids.

It can also be a sign of laziness when you are told that Sleeping Man(or Woman) is always around you. It means you're sleeping too much and not getting ready for the day!


Thursday, October 25, 2007

Wait a minute...weren't you black last week?

First of all, I would like to thank all my visitors to my little corner of the web, as well as Halima and Diva for linking to me. Thank you so much!

This past Tuesday, I was watching ECW. A wrestling program. Weird I know, but I've been watching some sort of wrestling program every week for the past ten years and it's a very hard habit to break. Or maybe I like watching guys in skimpy shorts.

Anyway, there's this black looking lady called Layla that shows up at almost every show. I think she's the only black (looking ethnic) 'Diva' in WWE right now due to the fact they let go of the only other black Diva last week. In the picture here, she has curly hair and has noticeable black features.

Fast foward to this past Tuesday. She shows up as a part of this wierd entourage, and I had a hard time placing her. In fact, I thought she got replaced by someone else! But a few rewinds with with my trusty DVR confirmed it was indeed her. What was it that made her look so differnt?

She had straightened her hair.

Granted, I also chemically straighten my hair, but with her, she didn't look black at all! It was like she changed ethnicities overnight. Now, she could be of different heritages, but this one change made her completely look like a different race.

This kinda disturbed me, because I don't know why this change had to be made. Is she getting rid of one stereotype for the other? The wrestling world is built on all types of stereotypes. From the redneck, to the hoodrat, to the war chanting Indian, the wrestling world has or had these characters. Here, Layla flip flops from looking ethnic to looking white in a week!

I don't know. I guess I should be used to this by now. But Layla, please, bring back your curly hair!


Sunday, October 21, 2007

Rezzed Out...aaayyy!

Over time, Mr. Salt and I have developed our own unique way of talking and mannerisms. Some words we use are taken from the Rez, the Navajo language, and black slang. I'll start with the word 'john' from my previous post.

'John': Mr. Salt says this means a really bozzie "ghetto" Navajo. Yes, they can be ghetto. More relates to the way they live on the Rez and life itself.

"...aaayyy!" Attached to the end of the sentence, it's how women flirt on the Rez. "That guy was giving you the eye, aaayyy!" RezDog.com has a great shirt with this saying on it. I want one.

"...and everything!" Attached to the end of sentence, it rolls up what could goes on with a person or a situation into one word. "He was drinking with his friends and everything!" "He was running around and everything!" Most people know what the "Everything" is.

"O'er there!" Basically, "over there!" Also point with your lips when you say this to give the right directions. Mr. Salt rubbed off on me because now I say this every time I give out directions.

"Ckys!" Put your tongue at the roof of mouth and make the 'ck' sound. Basically used when you have a "Are you kidding me? No way!" moment.

'ennit': No explanation necessary. Really.

Indianuity: Whenever Mr. Salt figures out how to rig something to make it work or make it work better. Similar to N*gger rigging.


Sunday, October 14, 2007

One little, two little, three little zhindians...


That term was created by SaltMama when Mr. Salt and I were dating. "You two will have zhindians!" she said. It's a fun term. Mr. Salt and I use it a lot to talk about any future children and situations.

Yesterday, we headed to see a softball game (which was part of a tournament) of a couple we know from church. Their youngest daughter was the flowergirl in our wedding, and we've had fellowship with them for the past year. It was a great outing. We got fresh air, visited a new restaurant, and if I wasn't sick, I would have stayed longer.

Mr. Salt admitted today that seeing all the kids made him wish for kids...zhindians. I know I want to have them. I wanted my mother to see any grandkids, but she passed before she could even meet Mr. Salt. My PCOS (PolyCystic Ovarian Syndrome) worries me, but if I get it under control, I should be fine. My PCOS has given me plenty of false alarms though, and even now, I dread taking another pregnancy test. I want it to be positive.

Having zhindians also creates some interesting discussions when it comes to Navajo clans. As I stated in my very first post, Mr. Salt has four clans, his main two being the Salt and Mexican People clans. When we have kids, the kids loses two clans, compared to another Navajo who have four. SaltMama has it figured it out to where any kids of ours will belong to a black person (me) and born for the Mexican People (Mr. Salt).

We hope this would do if our kids have to go to school on the Rez. One of the very first greetings to one another on the Rez is "What are your clans?" It helps establish family, friendship, and dating possibilies (You're not supposed to date within your clan. It's considered incest).

So for now, we talk about future zhindians we will have. And how 'john' they will be. What is 'john'. Rez terminology that have to dedicate a future post to. But for now, think upper class ghetto.


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

It's all about perspective...

Yesterday was Columbus Day. My conversation with Mr. Salt went like this:

DineBoo: Today's Columbus Day! Feel like scalping someone?
Mr. Salt: Not yet, but soon!

Prior to meeting Mr. Salt, I really didn't think about Columbus Day. All I knew it was a holiday that I didn't get off at school or at work. Now I know that it can be very insulting for some.

Imagine giving a holiday to the person that started the invasion of your homeland? That started the massacre of your people? That it is one note in history that caused your people great harm?

So we have Columbus Day. Mr. Salt doesn't celebrate it, obviously. He also doesn't really celebrate Thanksgiving, another obvious one. I mean, the Family comes together to eat, but that's it.

Because of a man, Native Americans were almost reduced to nothing. They were caricatures. And it's taken years to address that, even though some negative images remain.

A black comedian said it best: Washington N*ggers.

Puts it all into percpective.

As a side note, Mr. Salt was cheering when the Clevland Indians beat the New York Yankees. What he said, and I quote:

Mr. Salt: Screw Columbus! The Indians have won!


Thursday, October 4, 2007

Hormones, hormones, hormones...

For a lot of women, there comes a time during every month where our female hormones start surging. Apparently, mine started this week.

I have had mood swings all week. One day I get really aggravated with Mr. Salt over something silly that I normally don't care about. The other day I'm all depressed and want to be left alone. Today, I'm sobbing over the ending to A Time to Kill. Yes, I know it's emotional, but it's not a movie I've cried about before. And I've seen the ending more than five times!

I just love my body.


Monday, October 1, 2007

Time to get back to work

On Tuesday, I reenter the workforce after being off for about a year.

During my time off, I got married and played homemaker, taking care of Mr. Salt. It was kind of a test run, mostly to see if we could handle things if I had zhindians and I wanted to stay home. We're on the edge, but it's a wait and see type of situation.

I'm kinda nervous. I haven't been in an office for a while, but I think I'll be okay. It'll be nice to get up and have something to do again. Now all I have to do is to start planning for when to do my exercises and Mr. Salt's and I lunches. And buy more businesses casual attire. I need a long skirt, a few tops, and another jacket.

I've enjoyed my rest, but now is the time to put my degree to use. I've spent too much money on it not to.