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Ringo vs. Chuck Norris

Today I’ll be talking about:

I. Sos mi hombre

II. Vocabulario

III. Previous posts

IV. Coming soon!


I. Sos mi hombre


You might already know that telenovelas are a big deal in Latin America, and Argentina is no exception. I think Graduados is the best known here, but my host sister prefers Sos mi hombre (You’re My Man.) It plays during dinner, and so it’s become part of my nightly ritual to grill her about the characters and struggle to understand the faster-than-light-speed dialogue. Sometimes I literally only understand, “Hello? …Yes. …son…mate…rollercoaster…thank you!”


If you’re curious, you can watch episodes on Youtube. It’s a little ridiculous in the usual soap opera way, but it IS a good representation of Argentine speech and slang, culture (mate, etc), and social expectations. Example: something that throws me for a loop every time is when you get to see the very macho lead male CRY. And in no way does it reduce his manliness. Argentina, I approve. He also sports a cubata, the omnipresent Argentine mullet. Argentina, I do not approve.


Last week, I felt like I crossed a barrier. A rite of passage, if you will. Suddenly, inexplicably, I could understand the dialogue. Like flicking on a light. I can’t stomach that kind of TV in the US, but now that I can understand what’s going on and I have a bit of background on the main characters it’s starting to grow on me.


Let me take a moment to explain my moment of revelation today when I pieced together all the basic components of the main plot arc:

Man (Rrrrrringo!) meets woman while he’s acting as the security guard at her fancy schmancy house. Awkward problem: she’s about to get married! No biggie. He’s still got lots of love in his life leftover from his last marriage in the form of a very curly haired son. (The kooky ex-wife sometimes takes the kid to the US without telling him, which makes him cry.) In his spare time, when he’s not creeping on his lover’s husband or playing video games with his kid, Ringo spends his time putting out the fires that his lover’s literally psychotic little sister starts, because he’s a volunteer fireman. Oh and he’s also a boxer and has biceps the same size as his head. Casual. All in a day’s work for Ringo. (By the way, his bestest buddy is a lawyer who is also a boxer and also a  volunteer firefighter…and is dating the crazy sister.) Not sure when he sleeps, but who cares.


This is when I explained to my host sister about Chuck Norris and how, according to American pop culture, he can do anything. (The in-Spanish example I gave went like this: “Chuck Norris is so strong that he brushes his teeth with a cactus!”) Because I think Ringo is a man of Chuck Norris’s heart. Need a fire put out? Call Ringo. Need your property to be secured and guarded? Call Ringo. Need your car fixed, back rubbed, five star meal cooked, hair cut, house redecorated? You know the drill.


It’s kind of wonderful


II. Vocabulario



Telenovela (novela) – soap opera

Amigo con derechos – friend with benefits

Fato – a super crude way to say amigo con derechos (OJO)

Villero – someone who lives in the slums

Personaje – a character in a work of fiction, not to be confused with carácter, moral character or persona, a person.

Cursi – cheesy. (Also see: piropo, chamullo, pun.)

Capitulo – Chapter, or in this case, episode of a TV show


III. Previous posts

1. Antes de que me voy  Before I Leave 

2.  Host Families and Fun with Public Transportation  

3. “Are You the Girl with the Blog?”

4. Playing Tourists in Buenos Aires  

5. Looking Good, Mendoza!  

6. A Detailed Guide on All Things Micro  

7. Trip to Las Termas  

8. Daily life in Mendoza 

9. Habia una vez en los Andes… 

10. Night of the Soccer Game 

11. Road Trip! 

12. My Mate for Life 


IV. Coming soon!



The Student’s Life
Trabajo Voluntario
Rafting in San Rafael

Chile Part II

The split up and the return to BA



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