Friday, June 21, 2024

What does it meme? Last memes of the year

What’s the last frontier in language learning?

Why, it’s humor, of course! In this column, we bring you Spanish-language memes galore, complete with English translations and explanations of what makes them funny. So sit back and enjoy, for the time has come for your Mexican memes of the week!

Meme Translation: “People downtown complaining about the other people downtown.”

What does it meme? Ah, Christmastime in the city. If only there were a little more space to move around! 

The downtown areas of most cities and towns in Mexico tend to get fairly decked out during the holidays, and events for families abound. There’s more going on in the shopping world, with special markets set up to accommodate last-minute Christmas gift hunters. 

All this means that things can get pretty crowded…what a nice time we’d have if it weren’t for all these people taking up space, am I right?

Meme Translation: “Look at you dancing cumbia last night. And you claim to be a rocker!”

What does it meme? One of my favorite things about attending Mexican parties is watching pretty alternative-looking people join in the festivities in surprising ways: no matter where people are from or what stage of life they’re in, they all seem to magically know every word to every song a mariachi group might play; a lot more people than you’d think dance as well, especially if you’re from a country where most men, by definition, do not dance at all.

And Christmas Eve, by the way, is a great party and no solemn occasion: walk into most celebrations on that day and you might mistake it for New Year’s Eve!

Meme Translation: “Selfie with the birthday boy.”

What does it meme? In Catholic families (which is most families around here), a traditional posada includes putting “el niño Jesús,” a doll, in his place on the nativity scene. This means that before Christmas, you’ll see his little hay crib empty, but afterward, he’ll be in the manger where he belongs, waiting for the arrival of the Three Kings on January 7th that will bring him and all the other children gifts.

Meme Translation: “Is my Christmas gift ready?” “Yup, just got to wrap myself up.” “Hahaha, be sure to save the receipt so I can return it.”

What does it meme? This person’s attempt at being cute backfired majorly! A word to the wise: don’t assume the gift of yourself is enough, ha!

Meme Translation: “*Family reunion.*” “Me going into my room:”

What does it meme? Another thing about those Mexican parties? They tend to last very late into the night. So when they’re being held at someone’s house and the babies start getting cranky, they’re inevitably taken to a room with a bed to rest while the party goes on. 

My family and I went to a friend’s Christmas Eve party this year, and there were about 40 people. After the posada, meal, and games, we headed out around 11 p.m. Everyone was still there celebrating. 

I guess a few kids fell asleep before their parents were ready to go home. When you’re in it for the long haul, you’ve got to find solutions!

Meme Translation: “I’m so full, I over ate.” “Who wants turkey?” “Me! And a little bit of that apple salad.”

What does it meme? As I’ve mentioned, these are the days of gigantic meal after gigantic meal, and then leftovers from said gigantic meals. 

Unfortunately for our waistlines, it’s too good to pass up! And just like in every other country, gyms will be waiting for us with open arms come January. 

Meme Translation: “Santa, this isn’t the crush I meant.”

What does it meme? The word “crush,” as in the person you’re romantically interested in, is widely used and understood in Mexico. Too bad Santa didn’t realize that!

Sarah DeVries is a writer and translator based in Xalapa, Veracruz. She can be reached through her website, sarahedevries.substack.com.

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