About

I'm Mike Pope. I live in the Seattle area. I've been a technical writer and editor for over 30 years. I'm interested in software, language, music, movies, books, motorcycles, travel, and ... well, lots of stuff.

Read more ...

Blog Search


(Supports AND)

Google Ads

Feed

Subscribe to the RSS feed for this blog.

See this post for info on full versus truncated feeds.

Quote

What grammarians say should be has perhaps less influence on what shall be than even the more modest of them realize; usage evolves itself little disturbed by their likes and dislikes. And yet the temptation to show how better use might have been made of the material to hand is sometimes irresistible.

— H.W. Fowler



Navigation





<September 2017>
SMTWTFS
272829303112
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
1234567

Categories

  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  
  RSS  

Contact

Email me

Blog Statistics

Dates
First entry - 6/27/2003
Most recent entry - 9/23/2017

Totals
Posts - 2453
Comments - 2558
Hits - 1,984,502

Averages
Entries/day - 0.47
Comments/entry - 1.04
Hits/day - 381

Updated every 30 minutes. Last: 8:30 AM Pacific


  01:27 AM

Today is Cinco de Mayo, which has become a pan-Hispanic holiday in the U.S., something like the latino version of St. Patrick's Day. Some people mistakenly believe that this is Mexican Independence Day, perhaps. It's not, tho -- that's September 16.

Cinco de Mayo is a Mexican holiday, but it's not the biggest one by any means. The place it's particularly important is in the Mexican city of Puebla, which was the site of a battle that took place on May 5, 1862. Mexican troops defeated a French expeditionary force that was intent on taking Mexico City.

How exactly a day commemorating a military victory (in a war that was ultimately lost) came to be such a big deal in the U.S. is sort of mysterious. It's been adopted by folks from all over the Spanish-speaking world as Fiestas Patrias, a celebration of Hispanic pride. Not that there's anything wrong with that. It's not as if most other holidays haven't become unmoored from their putative origins and adapted into something that better suits the celabrants.

So happy Cinco de Mayo! Raise a glass to our southern neighbors and to the many ways in which we in the U.S. have uniquely benefited from the contributions of Mexican culture -- in language (savvy, mesa, macho, patio, siesta), food (chile, salsa, tacos, others too numerous to list), dress (sombrero, rebozo, huaraches), sport (rodeo), music (conjunto, norteña, mariachi, marimbas, maracas), dance, holidays (Dia de los Muertos, Cinco de Mayo), art (Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, pre-Columbian native work), literature (Octavio Paz, Carlos Fuentes, Gabriel Zaid, Laura Esquivel), film (Dolores del Río, Anthony Quinn, Los olvidados, Y tu mamá también, Amores Perros), ancient culture (Aztecs, Mayas), hospitality (Mazatlán, Cabo, Cancún, and everywhere in between), and plenty more.

And hey, the next time the French invade, remember Cinco the Mayo and the battle of Puebla.

[categories]   ,

[3] |