Author Topic: misconceptions  (Read 6004 times)

Offline delalluvia

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Re: misconceptions
« Reply #20 on: March 21, 2008, 12:08:58 pm »
One misconception I don't like is when people tell me I speak Mexican very well, when "Mexican" is not a language. The language is Spanish. When I was living in Wisconsin and New York people congratulated me for 5 de mayo and that date means nothing to me.

Also some people get so surprised that I'm really not into hot spicy food. Not all hispanic countries have hot spicy food or tacos or burritos in their daily diet.

There are so many misconceptions, especially in the USA, about hispanic people and the general culture. The worst part is that a lot of white and black American citizens show little interest to learn about the culture and the people. It's like we don't exist. There's also a lot of racism. Not everybody is racist of course but it is a sad reality.  :-\

I get some of this occasionally, too.  Most of the time it doesn't bother me.  After all, I hardly care if a person is of Irish or English or Croatian descent, to try to make distinctions of foods they eat or holidays they celebrate (I just say nothing), so as not to offend, so how I can I expect them to try to learn the differences in the Hispanic world?

This goes along with my "Happy Holidays!" versus "Merry Xmas and you'd better like it." live and let live attitude.  I like my attitude.  It lets me deal with people as people and not as their nationality or cultural background.

Last night, a male nurse at the hospital asked me, "Where are you from?"
I replied, as I always do, even when I'm pretty sure I know what they're asking, just to watch them fumble to figure out how to rephrase their question,  ;D
"Here.  Born and raised."
"No, I mean what is your background?"
"Oh, I'm Hispanic."
"I thought you were Hawaiian."

I don't look like anything ethnic in particular because of all the mixed blood in my family, so I get a lot of misidentifications, even in Texas, with its large Hispanic population.  Name almost any nationality/ethnicity/culture  with olive-skinned or tan looking people and I have been mistaken for one.  But I did get mistaken for French once, due to my French name (which is also Spanish).

Hawaiian, though,  has always been my personal favorite.

Offline forsythia12

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Re: misconceptions
« Reply #21 on: March 21, 2008, 12:37:23 pm »
One misconception I don't like is when people tell me I speak Mexican very well, when "Mexican" is not a language. The language is Spanish. When I was living in Wisconsin and New York people congratulated me for 5 de mayo and that date means nothing to me.

Also some people get so surprised that I'm really not into hot spicy food. Not all hispanic countries have hot spicy food or tacos or burritos in their daily diet.

There are so many misconceptions, especially in the USA, about hispanic people and the general culture. The worst part is that a lot of white and black American citizens show little interest in learning about the culture and the people. It's like we don't exist. There's also a lot of racism. Not everybody is racist of course but it is a sad reality.  :-\

yep.  i hear ya on that one!  my dad lives in spain and is married to a spanish woman.  .....therefore, i speak some spanish.  i've also been to mexico many many times, and since i'm familiar with the term 'mexican' and 'spanish' it totally irks me when someone says 'do you speak mexican'....?  wtf?  but, in all fairness, some people just don't know,...and i personally don't hold it against someone for not knowing.  afterall,, there's stuff we all could learn; however, what i don't like is when people are not humble about there ignorance, and think they know it all.  i get very offended when people make statements as if they were true, out of ignorance.  i mean, i've asked people what ethnic background they're from, and quite frankly, i think that's wise to do because it's the only way to learn.  what i don't like is racial comments that are grossly wrong, and go with an unwilling attitude about learning.  in fact, i think people should ask more questions to inform themselves properly. 
i worked for a sikh family once, and i was very curious about their religion, what part of india they were from, how they felt about terrorists, islam, they're language, etc....and i was blown away about how much i learned, and how many stories they had of people accusing they're fellow sikh's of terrorism.  so, yes, i was uninformed before, and now i'm better informed.  i think they appreciated the questions, since they were asked in taste, and with a genuine desire to learn....

Offline opinionista

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Re: misconceptions
« Reply #22 on: March 21, 2008, 01:12:55 pm »
yep.  i hear ya on that one!  my dad lives in Spain and is married to a spanish woman.  .....therefore, i speak some spanish.  i've also been to mexico many many times, and since i'm familiar with the term 'mexican' and 'spanish' it totally irks me when someone says 'do you speak mexican'....?  wtf?  but, in all fairness, some people just don't know,...and i personally don't hold it against someone for not knowing.  afterall,, there's stuff we all could learn; however, what i don't like is when people are not humble about there ignorance, and think they know it all.  i get very offended when people make statements as if they were true, out of ignorance.  i mean, i've asked people what ethnic background they're from, and quite frankly, i think that's wise to do because it's the only way to learn.  what i don't like is racial comments that are grossly wrong, and go with an unwilling attitude about learning.  in fact, i think people should ask more questions to inform themselves properly. 
i worked for a sikh family once, and i was very curious about their religion, what part of india they were from, how they felt about terrorists, islam, they're language, etc....and i was blown away about how much i learned, and how many stories they had of people accusing they're fellow sikh's of terrorism.  so, yes, i was uninformed before, and now i'm better informed.  i think they appreciated the questions, since they were asked in taste, and with a genuine desire to learn....


I live in Spain too. I usually don't hold ignorance against people because they can't help it. But I also think in this era of Internet and wikipedia it is not so hard to learn Mexicans speak Spanish not Mexican. You can even learn that on Sesame Street! Also, Spanish is taught in many schools around the nation, so I'm always surprised when I hear people say that. As for 5 de mayo, is that I'm Puerto Rican and being congratulated for a battle fought in Puebla when I lived in Wisconsin and New York city was so strange to me, given the fact that there are so many Puerto Ricans in New York and Milwaukee. I thought people knew more about the differences between the Puerto Ricans and the Mexicans in those cities but I was wrong. It could be that they can't really tell from my looks where I'm from and they simply assume I'm Mexican.
Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement. -Mark Twain.

Offline forsythia12

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Re: misconceptions
« Reply #23 on: March 21, 2008, 01:33:49 pm »
I live in Spain too. I usually don't hold ignorance against people because they can't help it. But I also think in this era of Internet and wikipedia it is not so hard to learn Mexicans speak Spanish not Mexican. You can even learn that on Sesame Street! Also, Spanish is taught in many schools around the nation, so I'm always surprised when I hear people say that. As for 5 de mayo, is that I'm Puerto Rican and being congratulated for a battle fought in Puebla when I lived in Wisconsin and New York city was so strange to me, given the fact that there are so many Puerto Ricans in New York and Milwaukee. I thought people knew more about the differences between the Puerto Ricans and the Mexicans in those cities but I was wrong. It could be that they can't really tell from my looks where I'm from and they simply assume I'm Mexican.

lol.
yeah, what people think can be amusing and annoying at the same time.  yes, i agree, often times you wonder how someone could possibly go through life thinking the things they do, especially with all the info available out there today....but, i guess we'll always have that problem.  i didn't think you did hold it against them.  i guess , IMO, if someone is genuinely uninformed, it's a lot easier to overlook their misconception, but when someone is ignorant and rude about it, well, that's just unaccpetable.  thank you for your post.
mucho gracias! ;D.......(that's me speaking mexican!) lol

Offline MsMercury

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Re: misconceptions
« Reply #24 on: March 21, 2008, 02:42:43 pm »
I'm always surprised that people think Mexicans speak "Mexican" instead of Spanish.  :laugh:

My boyfriend is part Cherokee indian. He definitely looks it, especially in the summer. Well while he's at work he has people (customers) come up and start speaking Spanish to him and when he tells them he doesn't speak Spanish they actually get pissed at him!

Offline opinionista

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Re: misconceptions
« Reply #25 on: March 21, 2008, 04:55:26 pm »
I'm always surprised that people think Mexicans speak "Mexican" instead of Spanish.  :laugh:

My boyfriend is part Cherokee indian. He definitely looks it, especially in the summer. Well while he's at work he has people (customers) come up and start speaking Spanish to him and when he tells them he doesn't speak Spanish they actually get pissed at him!

I know. That's another misconception I don't understand. Just because your last name is Spanish or because you look Spanish doesn't mean you have to know the language. I have a friend whose great grand father was from Spain but her entire family was born and raised in the US. She has a very Spanish last name, but she doesn't speak Spanish at all and people get mad at her over her not knowing Spanish. My cousin has the same problem. She was born and raised in NYC but her Spanish is so bad that she doesn't like speaking it and she also gets hell from other hispanic people. It's so stupid.
Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement. -Mark Twain.

Offline optom3

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Re: misconceptions
« Reply #26 on: March 21, 2008, 07:05:47 pm »
Palmetto bugs love to live in those big oaks too.  I hate those things too!
They are gross I nearly had a coronary the first time I saw one ,and boy can they shift fast.Hate the love bugs too.Wreck my car and I end up sweeping them up by the dustpan load.Our yard is full of oaks I wonder if that is why we get so many.

Offline optom3

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Re: misconceptions
« Reply #27 on: March 21, 2008, 07:09:32 pm »
Well I have heard the thing about bad teeth but i've also heard that same thing about Japan.  That's a terrible misconception to have!
Oh and another misconception that people have about me is that because I'm southern, I must live on a farm. Even better, when I say I live in Florida, some people assume I live in a little stucco house on the beach with pink flamingos in the front yard! ::)

My brother lives in Japan and he says  the Japanese think europeans are filthy because we sit in our baths and wash.They take a shower first,then sit in a very small tub,almost like a small jacuzzi minus jets and have a long soak.When you think about it their way makes sense.

Offline delalluvia

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Re: misconceptions
« Reply #28 on: March 21, 2008, 09:24:19 pm »
My brother lives in Japan and he says  the Japanese think europeans are filthy because we sit in our baths and wash.They take a shower first,then sit in a very small tub,almost like a small jacuzzi minus jets and have a long soak.When you think about it their way makes sense.

Heh, but then some shower when done in the tub.  8)

Offline Kerry

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Re: misconceptions
« Reply #29 on: March 21, 2008, 10:44:10 pm »

Last night, a male nurse at the hospital asked me, "Where are you from?"
I replied, as I always do, even when I'm pretty sure I know what they're asking, just to watch them fumble to figure out how to rephrase their question,  ;D
"Here.  Born and raised."
"No, I mean what is your background?"
"Oh, I'm Hispanic."
"I thought you were Hawaiian."


I witnessed a funny incident in my office recently (in Sydney, Australia). I work with a lovely woman of Chinese ancestry. Her family came to Australian from China during the Gold Rush in the late 1880s. She was born in Australia, as were all her family for generations. She has an Aussie accent, her first name is Joanne and her last name is Chinese. She is a senior public servant and very intelligent. A visitor came to our office, to attend a meeting. As patronisingly condescending as can be, he asked Joanne, "And where do you come from, dear?" (just holding back from patting her on the head in the process) Meaning, "What Asian country are you from?" Quick as a flash, Joanne responded stoney-faced, without even a hint of a smile, "Lismore" (a town in country New South Wales). Boy, did that ever put him in his place. I had to suppress a laugh. (Change the setting of my office from Sydney to New York and change Joanne's response from "Lismore" to "Cleveland" or "New Jersey" to put this story in a US context)  :D
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