One of these days you may hear someone refer to the “Familia Telerín” (teh-leh-REEN) as in “Ahí viene la Familia Telerín” (Here comes the Telerín family). The name “Familia Telerín” is an affectionate term for any family with small children. It refers to a time in Mexico (and several other countries) when there was an animated cartoon notice broadcast on the television to remind small children that it was time to go to bed. In Mexico in particular it was broadcast by Televisa (channel two) every night at eight o'clock. This occurred in the 1970's and all the way up throgh the 80's. It started out in black and white and eventually it went to color. La Familia Telerín was an early animation created in Spain in 1964 by two brothers named Santiago and José Moro and it was such a great success that it eventually spread to other Spanish speaking countries.
There were six little children in La Familia Telerín. There names were Cleo, Teté, Maripí, Pelusín, Coletas y Cuquín. The leader was the little girl named “Cleo” which is short for “Cleotilde”. The next was the little boy named Teté whom I believe was named after a famous blind Spanish Jazz pianist named Tete Montoliu. His full name was Vicente Montoliu Massana. He was very popular about the time when the Moro brothers created their animation. The next in line was a little girl named “Maripí” (mah-ree-PEE) which is short for “María Pilar”. Next came the little boy “Pelusín” (pay-loo-SEEN). The name comes from a combination of the words “pelusa” (fluff), “peluca” (wig), and peluquín (toupee). In English we would probably call him “Mopsy” or "Topsy" or something similar. After Pelusín came the little girl, “Coletas” (koh-LAY-tahs). She is named “Coletas” because the word “coleta” means “pigtail” and she has two of them. Last but not least comes the baby “Cuquín” (koo-KEEN). The word “cuco” means “pretty” and the suffix “quín” makes it a diminutive and so in English we would probably say “Cutie Pie”.
When the animated notice would appear on the television screen at eight o'clock there would first be a little speech by Cleo who would say:
Un recado de parte de la tele. Ya va siendo hora de que los peques nos vayamos a la cama. A television reminder. Now it is getting to be the time that us little ones should go to bed.
Then Cleo would shout “¡Ale!” (“Come on!”) and they would all march off to bed singing:
Vamos a la cama
We are going to bed
que hay que descansar
because we need to rest
para que mañana
so that in the morning
we can be earlybirds.
Here is a little experiment for you to try. Ask any of your Mexican freinds over the age of forty to tell you about the Family Telerín. I'll be that they start singing:
“Vamos a la cama que hay que descansar, para que mañana podamos madrugar.”
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