27 November 2009

Beer dancing...

Mexico is truly beer country as anyone who has ever been here knows. There are two main brewing companies. One is Cervecería Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma and the other is Grupo Modelo. The Cervecería Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma makes Carta Blanca, Sol, Indio, Bohemia, Superior, Dos Equis, Tecate, and also Noche Buena which we only see at Christmas time. Grupo Modelo makes Corona Extra, Corona Light, Victoria, Pacífico, Pacifico Light, Negra Modelo, Modelo Especial, Modelo Light, Estrella, León, Montejo, Barrilito, and Tropical Light. That ought to be enough of a selection for anybody. I hardly ever drink beer anymore although I must confess that when I was younger, my Air Force buddies and I probably drank enough beer to fill an Olympic size swimming pool. My wife Gina and her mother Carmelita like to drink a beer or two now and then, especially when there is a fiesta. Gina is such a small gal that two beers in succession is enough to make her quite quite happy and inclined to want to dance. This is where the "beer dancing" comes in.

There is a phrase in Mexican Spanish that goes "bailando de carton de cerveza" or "dancing like a case of beer". You might think that this has something to do with dancing while inebriated but it doesn't (at least not exactly). You need to picture in your mind a guy who is carrying a case of beer. His arms are held parallel straight down in front of him and his elbows are locked. His head is inclined forward and his chin is down. His hands are turned inward at a sharp angle so that the palms and fingers support the carton which rests across his thighs. Now picture this same guy without the case of beer. There is some slow, romantic music playing and the lights are low. It is late in the evening and everyone is feeling quite "happy". His wife or his girlfriend has slipped her arms around his neck and drawn his head down close to hers and whispers in his ear, "Pápi, vamos a bailar de carton de cerveza" (Daddy let's dance really close and sexy). So then he puts his arms around her and slides both of his hands down past her hips and with his hands he grabs her "pompis" (buttocks) just like he was carrying a case of beer and off they go swaying to the music. THAT is what it means to "bailar de cartón de cerveza" or "bailar de cartoncito". Most often it is something that the young people do and when an older couple dances that way it can either be quite funny or quite scandalous.

There is one thing for sure though. If you are ever at a party and some guy starts dancing like that with a woman who is someone else's wife or girlfriend then you should grab your date and start for the door because the party will soon break up and when the music stops the fight will begin. There is a government sponsored campaign whose slogan is "Bebe con moderación" (Drink with moderation). Perhaps they ought to add, "y baile con moderación también" (And dance with moderation also).


Rodney said...

Cool, I like that phrase.

Colloquial sayings like this sometimes pop up, and it's great to be able to know what they mean.

I was once told by a friend that "you know everything", she was refering to my understanding of many colloquial words, phrases and cultural awareness (albiet limited), so these things don't go unnoticed.

Thanks Bob! This was a fun post.

YayaOrchid said...

I'd never heard that term before, but now I know what it means if I ever do hear it. I guess it's kinda of like 'dirty dancing'?

Bob Mrotek said...

Thank you for the nice comment.

I wouldn't call it "dirty dancing". I would rather call it "sexy dancing" or "daring dancing". If the wrong couple does it you could even call it "funny dancing". I could never do anything like that, myself, without dying from embarrassment :)

GlorV1 said...

It actually sounds like a fun dance for a couple in love. Me, I'll have a Modelo, once in a while. As for dancing, my esposo doesn't dance. :( I used to dance 27 years ago. hehehe. The only dancing I do now is at Curves and that's to exercising. Oh well, can't win them all. Pass the beer Bob. :D

YayaOrchid said...

Bob, did you ever see the movie "Dirty Dancing"? That was also pretty daring.

At my age, I'd feel pretty silly too. Now if I was a wee bit younger........

My Sweetie doesn't dance either, although in my youth I did enjoy it.

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I was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A. I have been living in Mexico since January 6th, 1999. I am continually studying to improve my knowledge of the Spanish language and Mexican history and culture. I am also a student of Mandarin Chinese.