Jorge Gonzalez: Slang and Cultural Expressions

Approx. time Expression Explanation
0:49 in the saddle engaged in this activity or job
1:14 straddled standing across a border, with one foot on each side
1:27 Grand Valley State University
1:29 Go, Lakers! GVSU’s nickname: Lakers, mascot: Louie the Laker
2:05 acculturated learning about the culture
2:07 assimilated becoming completely blended in
2:47 ancestry, ethnicity racial membership or cultural history
3:01 heritage cultural background
3:09 tamales traditional Mexican food with starch (usually corn) base, filled with meat or salsa or dried fruit, boiled/steamed in a leaf wrapper (which is discarded before eating)
3:46 blending in fitting in without notice, losing one’s previous distinction
4:02 saddled with burdened with (like having a heavy horse saddle tied onto your back)
4:07 melting pot a metaphor where everyone joins a mix and loses his/her identity by blending together
4:15 salad bowl a metaphor where everyone joins together but keeps his/her distinctive character
4:23 analogy a comparison to help people understand a concept
4:55 ins and outs of basic rules of
5:04 P.R. public relations
5:33 mainstream market business world where the majority of people operate
5:44 sustainability ability to keep going for a long time
6:10 vice-versa also the opposite way
6:20 diversity and inclusion being different and making different people all feel welcome and included
7:08 siblings brothers and sisters
7:52 asset building have your home, bank account, and other investments continue to grow in value
8:00 legacy what you pass on to the next generation
8:50 different lenses different ways of seeing the world
9:05 humble beginnings very simple roots, not rich
9:19 upward mobility ability to move up in education, work position, and income
9:45 debatable something we could discuss about possibly not being true
10:29 cultural competency ability to understand and work with people from other cultures
11:15 intentional doing something by thoughtful design and planning
12:20 your tenure your time in that position
12:33 LINC Grand Rapids community revitalization program

At the end of the interview, Jorge says in Spanish, "Muchas gracias" (Thanks much), and Alan answers "De nada" (You're welcome).

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.