Wild Life Of A Little Monster

Others are scared of me because of all the fun I have. Considered a vigilante by my Eponine.

It's All Greek To Me

My Eponine once clearly told me she did not want her blog to be political. That said, please know this post is not intended to be political but a reflection of my history.

My grandparents never learned English. They only spoke Spanish. As a kid, I was thrilled when I heard them say English words like taco, enchilada or margarita. I also was amazed that their little dog, Freddie, understood Spanish commands and English. I remember lying on the floor and getting on an eye-to-eye level with him, totally quizzing him to see if he really could understand English. I would get all excited and tell my mom that he could understand English.

I also remember showing off and singing my school songs. Like "My Country Tis Of Thee" and the U.S. National Anthem. My grandparents did sing along with me. In Spanish. This was in the early '70s.

My grandparents were born in the U.S., had U.S. passports and paid U.S. taxes. They never had "good" jobs, but they always worked. They also proudly waved a U.S. flag. I'm not certain when or who immigrated. Which ancestors. But at some point it did likely occur. I also don't know if it was done legally. Our family tree doesn't have too many roots. Just limbs.

My mom has an accent. In junior high and high school I had friends that would mimic her. In a loving way. They weren't being rude. However, she has endured name calling and stereotypes. But, she has always worked, raised kids, attended and participated in church, paid taxes, and always has voted. She's never learned to drive though, and has never had a state-issued ID.

Now, at almost 80, she may no longer be able to vote because of a lack of an ID. The name on her birth certificate of course is not the same as her married name. Can't seem to find the marriage license, but we are working to find the divorce decree from the early 1970s to show that she was in fact married and that her name really is her name. She's only had it for the last five or so decades.

I'm not for folks "illegally" entering the U.S. Now, learning the English language requirement I find a little hyocritical. I know way too many Americans who, um, can barely speak English. Sometimes it's almost impossible to understand some of these folks. There are times I'm not even certain I understand our president when he is speaking in "English." I think to myself, "What did he say?"

Occasionally I feel guilty being such an Oklahoma State fan while living in Missouri. I think that someone might say, "if you love it so much, why don't you live there?" I do love my home state, but fully have no desire to live there. My heritage is mine, though, and OSU stuff is proudly donned in front, around, and inside my Missouri home. It's on my car too. And, although I've lived here for almost 17 years, I still haven't learned to speak correctly. I don't say Masoura. It's Missouri to me. Hope they'll let me stay.

These are interesting times we are living in. Every generation likely has said that. It'll be fascinating to see how history will record these times. One thing for sure, I'm glad the cat blogging community can include a Cowboy, who still loves and misses his Eponine.

9 Comments:

At May 01, 2006 7:10 AM, Blogger The Meezers said...

Hey Cowboy, you will always be a part of our blogging community. We don't care if you speak English or Spanish, we pretend not to understand any of it, especially when given in a command like "get off of that". At those time, we only speak our own "cat-ese" language. - Sammy and Miles

 
At May 01, 2006 9:50 AM, Blogger Edsel/The Pooch said...

this issue has many sides. i don't understand, tho, the people who use our schools, use our health care, use our roads, live safely in our country, but don't pay taxes. if you want the advantages, you should pay for them.
Edselsmom

 
At May 01, 2006 11:12 AM, Blogger Magoo, Smudge, Bella & Dolce said...

Bad dialects are a lot different than not being able to speak the language at all. Both the US and Canada (and a lot of the European countries) have similar problems when it comes to illegal immigration. But I still go with the cold hard truth... it still is illegal immigration. If there is such a shortage of workers in those industries, then develop some sort of system where the people can come and work but do not automatically accrue citizenship.

 
At May 01, 2006 3:30 PM, Blogger PrincessMia said...

Beanmom told me to say that she agrees wif what you say, Cowboy. She's an immigrant too. She's never been illegal, speaks 3 languages, but not Spanish and doesn't like to be called an alien.

 
At May 01, 2006 8:56 PM, Blogger bat & bandit & holly said...

mom says to say to edsel's mom that illegal immigrants do pay taxes that cover those things she listed, because those are covered through sales taxes and property taxes that everyone pays when they buy stuff and either own property and pay property taxes directly or pay them indirectly in their rent. mom also says to tell you, cowboy, that if you needs help wif yer mom's stuff to email, cuz she knows OK attys or she might be able to help from here.

 
At May 02, 2006 2:37 PM, Blogger Chatham said...

Cat Couch sez that we were all aliens at some point. Her aliens were just a long time ago, that's all.

 
At May 02, 2006 11:17 PM, Blogger Eponine's Cowboy said...

I am glad that cats and cat owners (as well as others) can express thoughts, do so intelligently, agree, disagree, agree to disagree, and stay friends. I hesitated with this post, but then couldn't resist. Stereotypes effect all - those who have them and those who are stereotyped. Immigration and illegal immigration likely effects all as well. I think the more educated and aware we are, the better off our communities will be. It might have to start with one cat at a time!

 
At May 04, 2006 10:57 AM, Blogger Petey said...

In our house; where you live is called Misery; 'cause the mom got a ticket there. With all this immigration talk going around we have to go with the mom's opinion and say that in theory she'd like it if everyone went back to where they came from. But, in all actuality just cut her a royalty check every month for the use their country. They being the Native Americans, which the mom is one of.

 
At May 05, 2006 1:00 PM, Blogger Eponine's Cowboy said...

Misery is how many describe it, but I like it. Hope your mom's ticket wasn't too bad.

The only thing about Native Americans is that some say there's evidence that Native Americans immigrated here from someplace else - south/north elsewhere. You never know.

I do believe if given an opportunity to move to the U.S. legally, most people wanting to move here would select that option. Moving here illegally and staying illegally is not truly their goal and desire. However, I have rose-colored glasses!

One thing for sure, I know that if my ancestors had not moved here, legally or illegally - I don't know, my life sure would have been vastly different. I'm glad they took what risks they did and took a chance.

B&B-I forgot to mention the other day to tell your mom thanks for offering to help. I'll keep that in mind if we run into a huge hurdle.

Princess Mia-Does your Beanmom really speak 3 languages? That is very impressive! What language does she normally speak to you? Can you understand all of them?

I actually like the idea that there could be aliens. :) I used to love watching John Lithgow and those other crazies on Third Rock from the Sun. I just know there has to be some aliens walking around here with us. Maybe? I guess that's a subject for a different post.

By the way, in my last comment, I think it should have been "affect." Ooops.

 

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