Reyna Grande Show: Slang and Cultural Expressions

Approx. time Expression Explanation
0:55 memoirist person who writes a memoir
1:32 make things up (informal) invent stories, tell things that aren’t factual
2:18 lived through experienced
2:47 autobiographical writing about oneself
3:29 El Otro Lado (Spanish) the other side (of the border) = the U.S.
3:45 indignities events that attack our human worth, soul, self-respect
4:51 memoir a book about someone’s life (memories)
6:58 yearn for long for; have a strong desire or need for
7:29 has colored has influenced
8:08 roles were reversed jobs were opposite
8:41 at the mercy of controlled by, under the influence of, subject to
8:50 take a stand take responsibility for, announce one’s position
9:42 glimpses short views
9:56 spunk courage, strength, determination, spirit
10:14 true poverty being really and totally poor
11:15 cycle of poverty repetition of being poor from one generation to the next
11:50 hand to mouth earning only enough money to buy the day’s meal, not saving, not getting ahead
12:09 get ahead making progress, going forward, finding success
12:40 running water accessible water via plumbing
13:19 dire serious, difficult, urgent, terrible
14:27 siblings brothers and sisters
14:50 cheated out of had something taken away unfairly
16:03 above and beyond farther than what is expected or normal
16:14 opening the doors to welcoming, sheltering
16:40 community college post-high school education resulting in a 2-year degree
17:33 strive for work hard for
18:40 undocumented not having official paperwork or visas
20:20 drives me motivates me, pushes me
21:12 common ground areas or opinions which are shared
21:22 out of my element in an uncomfortable situation, in an unfamiliar place

Alan Headbloom

Alan advises Americans how to be global citizens and expats how to fit in to Michigan culture without annoying their native coworkers and clients. He also tweets and blogs at the intersection of language and culture. Over decades, he's traveled, studied, or lived on six continents, putting strange foods into his mouth and emitting strange sounds from it. His use of English, German, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Swedish, Hausa, and Japanese all improve with alcohol use. He gives invited public presentations on culture and unsolicited private advice on English grammar and usage; the latter isn't always appreciated. Visit his website for information on consulting, coaching, or speaking engagements.