22 December 2012

A Wonderful Gift

Today I received a nice surprise. It was a note from my friend Javier Camarena that included a You Tube Video that he made that is an audio visual description of some of the delightful traditions of Christmas here in Mexico. His note reads as follows:

Dear Bob,  I have been reading your blog constantly and I`m impressed  with your writhing  and your research, I didn’t  want to pass the opportunity to wish you end Gina a  Merry Christmas, so I`m sending you a “Tarjeta Navideña” that I made with Villancicos that I remember from my youth and images that make me remember my Childhood in Irapuato, I sincerely hope you like it. Again Feliz Navidad y Venturoso Año Nuevo 2013 to you and your Family. Javier Camarena


Please visit "The blog of Javier Camarena" which is written in Spanish and dedicated to the town of Irapuato.

Thank you Javier and may the Lord grant me my wish that you and your family have a very blessed Christmas and that the New Year brings you peace, prosperity, harmony and joy. Amen!

19 December 2012

The Morning Guy

Every morning my wife Gina and I watch a news/commentary program called "El Mañanero", or "The Morning Guy" (or also "Early Show"). It is a bit newsy but also a bit ribald and it pokes fun at life in general and particularly politicians. The star of the show is a man named Victor Trujillo who appears in clown makeup and calls himself "El Brozo", which is a play on words of the name "Bozo" as in "Bozo the Clown" who was a beloved figure in Mexico as well as in the United States and Canada. El Brozo, however, has green hair while Bozo the Clown's hair was red.

Victor Trujillo created the character "Brozo, El Payaso Tenebroso" (Brozo, the Creepy Clown) in 1988 as a parody of Bozo for a TV Azteca program with Ausencio Cruz called La Caravana (The Caravan). He pleased the audience with double-entendres and adult humor. He became so popular that TV Azteca asked him to join the reporters and anchors during coverage of the FIFA World Cup in 1990, 1994, 1998 and 2002. He also gave his commentary on the Olympics, starting with the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain until the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece. From 2002 to 2004, Trujillo as Brozo, was anchor of a popular and successful TV news show, El Mañanero. It was broadcast on Canal 40 XHTVM-TV and later Televisa. Trujillo discontinued the Brozo character following the death of his wife, producer Carolina Padilla, but brought back Brozo in a new TV program that began in early 2006. He is an influential political commentator.

Here is his tongue in-cheek morning "prayer" that he sings in a pseudo Gregorian Chant. He calls it "Oración contra todo mal" (Prayer against all evil). I added a rough English translation to the end of each line.

Oración en El Mañanero
de Victor Trujillo, El Brozo

"Santa Pascuala, 
que no me alcance una bala. (that a bullet doesn't reach me)

Santa Antonieta, 
que no me quiten mi camioneta, (that they don't steal my pickup)

San Macario,
que no me persiga un sicario, (that a hit man doesn't follow me)

San Andrés 
líbrame de un secuestro exprés, (deliver me from a snatch and grab kidnapping)

San Abulón ,
líbrame de un levantón, (deliver me from a high-jacking)

San Timoteo,
que no me toque un tiroteo, (keep me from being shot in a drive by)

San Federico,
que no me rompan el hocico, (keep them from breaking my face)

Santa Librada,
que no me caiga una granada y me lleve la chingada. (keep me from being blown to hell by a falling grenade)


16 December 2012

What is your purpose?

Many years ago when I first became a supervisor over a group of my fellow workers I had a bit of trouble learning the ropes. The problem was how to keep the work moving along moving and make sure that things didn't bog down. An old timer gave me some valuable advice. He said, "Just remember that many times workers unconsciously act just like cattle and it is your job to keep them from bunching up". He was right. When several workers find themselves in close proximity they tend to either start bickering or they start socializing and that takes the focus off of the job at hand. Later on I read somewhere that too many people have no real purpose to focus on. They are like cattle who do nothing but eat the grass that grows up underfoot out of their own excrement. Yucko! It seems to me that those people might be giving the poor cattle a bad name. The point is that without a purpose and a focus we are somewhat like cattle. Why do we get up in the morning and why does anyone care? There just has to be more to life than primordial routine body functions. This video by Simon Sinek provides some food for thought, but don't worry...it isn't grass.

15 December 2012

What motivates YOU?

I have recently turned the corner on my 65th birthday and at the end of the coming year 2013 I plan to retire...if God grants me the license to do so. Like the countless multitude who have preceded me I am now thinking about how to spend the rest of my life. I came across this motivational video from RSA Animate that talks about something that I have always believed in and that none of my employers seemed to understand...that money is a necessary evil and beyond providing the basic necessities of life it ceases to be a great motivator for many intelligent people. There is something else that is much more important. I am sharing this video in the hope that there are others out there who share the same view that I do. In fact, I'm sure that there are. Please stand up and be counted.

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About Me

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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.