Month: June 2011

Bilingual Works Both Ways

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I am often amazed at the things we take for granted. I am also sometimes appalled at the things in which one can assume. Today I share with you my thoughts of being bilingual.

In my customer service class I worked with the students on resumes. The logic behind the process; each person should have three versions of a résumé. Version one is the ideal job you would like to obtain. Version two is the job you are currently performing along with the accompanying skill sets. Version three is the low end version that downplays what you are capable to get you in the door of your ideal company in version one. Bonus points are rewarded for those who are bilingual. Stay with me, we are headed full circle.

One of my Spanish speaking students thought I was full of malarkey and posted all three versions to Monster.com under 3 separate email accounts. Her phone will not stop ringing. One company called on all three resumes and offered a relocation package. Her value she is bilingual. Yes, I have a point.

As American companies value her ability, Spanish speaking cultures also value those who speak English. The better jobs for workers who have yet to have a trade are in tourism areas. The better waitress and waiter jobs are in areas where you can explain to Nana she shouldn’t order that spicy dish. I found this out day one at Fuddruckers when the order taker could not understand my name and my order was listed under Yer. The loudspeaker needed work, but the dining assistant figured the order was mine since I was the only person not responded to the loudspeakers call of “Peek up urder por Yer.”

Equally hilarious were my attempts to order breakfast at Burger Bing which elicited a look of sympathy as he answered me in English. The hotel tour concierge thought it was “cute” that I was learning “some Spanish.” And last but not least, I found out at the Ponderosa, which was “outside” the tourist strip, that native Spanish speakers didn’t even attempt to converse with me in either language. She started pointing at the pictures on the menu board, holding up one finger or two. Well pardon my French!

My husband only laughed as he too told me my year of high school Spanish wasn’t really working well. I did not know how to convey that I actually had two years in high school and four in college, but languages, like any muscle requires exercise. I, know the language as well as three others including southern Ebonics, but alas I think in English. Being bilingual is an art, make sure you learn to appreciate those who are able to efficiently perform this honed skill and assist those who are trying, because bilingual does work both ways.

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Pretty is as Pretty Does

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Friday night, as I watched the sideways perspectives of Bill Maher, I actually listened to what he said. There was one line in particular that resonated with me. He stated that if Hillary Clinton made the same statement about Paul Revere as did Sarah Palin, the media and pundits would eat her alive. His reasoning, Sarah Palin gets away with more because she is pretty. It made me think and of course asks the question of myself that I will also pose to you; do attractive people get away with more?

In an ideal world I want to believe that those of us who actually use our heads are on equal footing, but then I changed the channel and there was Kim Khardashian. Her claim to fame is a big butt and a poorly filmed sex taped where the world was exposed to her cooter. I will not lie, she is beautiful, but is there anything else? As an amateur porn star, honestly, couldn’t You do better after a couple shots of Cuervo? She is essentially famous, for being famous and hanging with some equally untalented friends who also happen to be good looking with a great publicist. And to be honest, I have a big butt. I know 17 other women who have a big butt and are pretty and smart. If you know a good publicist, please send them my way, I would like to get an endorsement deal as well. A few cosmetic tweaks, carefully constructed makeup and hair weave, I too can be really pretty.

Then I thought of Jessica Simpson. I thought of her Pizza Hut buffalo wings commercial and Starkist tuna deals. Is she a genius or is she really that simple? Does it matter, she is pretty? Do we prefer to have women remain quiet or be outspoken with knowledge. I’m not certain so I must wait for you to weigh in.

I did ask my friend, who used Michelle Obama as an example. She stated that she is a Harvard graduate and a lawyer, yet her only stand has been on children, fitness and healthy eating. She did not make the Hillary Clinton mistake of creating a platform of politics, but instead opted for the well being of our children; inquisitive one that I am thought for a moment with a look of confusion on my face which prompted an answer. Her response was simply, you can be loud. You can be wrong. You can be loud and wrong, but never, ever should you be loud and right. Loud and right brings out the ugly in many and pretty is becomes as pretty does.

Let it marinate and get back to me.