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November 18, 2017
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In this installment Manelito gives Lance some language coaching.

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Manelito

Lance is a golf pro who runs a golf course and has a short temper. He also has an exalted opinion of himself and likes to lord it over other people. Manelito is a poor Mexican man who came illegally to this country but eventually gained citizenship. Though he works as a golf attendant at minimum wage bringing golf clubs for members when they show up at the club and seeing to their needs (bringing them drinks); Manelito is determined to prove he’s as good as the rich members of the club—-and also Lance, with whom he is often at odds. Lance would fire Manelito if he could, but he can’t. Lance’s boss over him in the big office hired Manelito and likes him. Lance is stuck with him. Manelito knows more English than he lets on to keep Lance off balance and to fool him.

Manelito uses a combination of Spanish and English (Spanglish) to mock Lance and drive him crazy.

Cooks in the Kitchen

By John Sammon

God how Lance hates this he’s got to ask that stupid Manelito for help.

Lance considers Manelito to be a stupid mother (F word), but he also knows that Manelito seems to know everything about everyone at the golf course. This link Lance does not find odd or perhaps misguided—-that Manelito is a stupid (F word) Mexican, nevertheless he always seems to know everything that goes on.

Lance is unable to see the conflict between the two thoughts, Manelito as a stupid Mexican yet someone who knows everything that goes on.

Manelito provokes a kaleidoscope of emotions in Lance, disgust, occasional rage, contempt, feelings of superiority (Lance’s), frustration and anger—–because no matter how many times and how hard he tries, Lance simply cannot dominate Manelito or get him to submit—and he wants to dominate him like he does everyone else.

Manelito somehow always remains independent, at times defiant, confusing, confounding, always somehow beyond mere ordering around. He always remains above submission, always finds a way out. He acts like he runs the place.

Lance has a curious psychological quirk. Despite the fact that he lords it over other people and often does put-downs, he wants people to love him. He needs acceptance of his huge self-esteem that he can’t recognize as arrogance. He wants to boss people in an insulting manner and he wants them to love him for it because he does not consider it insulting.

Lance just thinks he’s better and knows it. Others should know it. Some do, but not all.

For some reason, Lance can sense it; the cooks in the kitchen at the restaurant at the golf course don’t like him. He can’t understand why, but he can sense their coldness towards him, the way they stiffen at his approach, the way they look at him with slit eyes.

All the cooks are Hispanic.

The only one who would know is Manelito because Manelito knows everything that goes on and especially the Mexican cooks.

God how Lance hates to ask Manelito anything.

Lance – Could you come over here?

Manelito – (approaches slowly)

Lance – I want to ask you something

Manelito – Si

Lance – It’s about the cooks in the kitchen

Manelito – Si

Lance – (troubled) Do the cooks in the kitchen like me?

Manelito – Senior?

Lance – Do the cooks like me?

Manelito – No se (I don’t know, pronounced no-say)

Lance (angered) You refuse to tell me?

Manelito – Senior?

Lance – (mocking) No…can…say, huh?

Manelito (stares)

Lance (realizes he must be nice temporarily) – No, no you see Manelito. I go into the kitchen and the cooks…you know them. They are your people. I can tell they…you know they don’t act like…..

Manelito – Senior?

Lance – They act like they don’t like me

Manelito (nodding) – Pedro, Armento, Richardo, Jorge, Julio……

Lance – Yes, the cooks. Why? Have I done anything?

Manelito – You say….they be fired..maybe

Lance – No I didn’t, I never said that, I only said we have too many cooks, and that’s why we’re losing money the golf course

Manelito – Si

Lance – Well?

Manelito – Dey think…you are….a culo (ass, pronounced cool-o)

Lance – Don’t give me that if they thought I was cool they wouldn’t look at me like that

Manelito – La cocina (kitchen), you many times, boss ‘em

Lance – I don’t boss them I just help them do their jobs better

Manelito – Richardo is la cocina (kitchen) boss

Lance (looks angry)

Manelito – You just golf boss

Lance – (yelling) I’m your boss!

Manelito - Estiercol (means manure, pronounced ester-o-col)

Lance – (angry) You think this is hysterical?

Manelito – No mierda (shit, pronounced mir-da), dey think you are mierda

Lance – Weird huh? They think I’m weird? Tell me something I can tell them

Manelito – Senior?

Lance – Give me something I can tell them to change their minds about me

Manelito – What me say?

Lance – (yelling) You idiot tell me, just tell me what to say

Manelito (thinks)

Lance waits

Manelito – You tell them, tu madre es una puta (your mother is a whore)

Lance – (eagerly) Okay, that’s tu-maa…

Manelito – tu madre

Lance – Tu madre

Manelito – Es una puta….

Lance – Es una puta. What’s it mean?

Manelito – Your madre (mother)……mucho grande (very big)…puta….(whore)

Lance – Very grand okay…

Lance heads off to the kitchen repeating and rehearsing the line over and over “tu madre es una puta” to himself as he walks.

Manelito laughs

More next week.

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