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 They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere

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Hound Dog
Hound Dog

Posts : 195
Join date : 2011-02-21
Location : Ajijic & San Cristóbal de Las Casas

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PostThey´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere

THis ad appeared in the Tuxtla Gutierrez daily Cuarto Poder on March 11, 2011. Keep in mind that Cuarto Poder is a Spanish language daily newsapaper in a state where there are virtually no English speaking people. In fact, a lot more people speak Tzotzil as their primary languiage than English and the people who speak an indigenous language are among the primary reasons for the ad in the first place. This ad appeared in English only and I quote (My comments in parenthesis):


International Christian engineering ministry is looking for a candidate to fill the position of their Mexico Country Program for its office in Chiapas. Interested individuals should have the following attributes:
° Fully fluent and bilingual in both Spanish and English
° Civil engineering background with desigm capabilities
° Commitment to Jesus Christ and willingness to share the gospel with individuals and communities. A calling to serve others and Jesus Chriast.
° Willingness to live in San Cristóbal de Las Casas
(The ad goes on to delineate various secular attributes required of the candidate and direct candidates how to contact this organization.)

I suppose it would be churlish of me to suggest that if full bilingual capabilities in both Spanish and English are base requirements for candidates, an ad in a Spanish language newspaper in an isolated region such as Chiapas might help weed out frivolous inquiries if it were in Spanish. It would also be insensitive of me to point out that the primary focus of evangelical Christians in Chiapas is among the indigenous who constitute about 40% of the state´s population; many of whom speak various indigenous languages with little or no comprehension of Spanish. Of course, had the ad specified fluency in, say, Tzotzil, there would likely have been no applications. Perhaps the idea is to spring that news on the successful candidate once he/she has assumed his/her role and moved to San Cristóbal which is not your typical Mexican burg and not an easy place for these fartblossums to settle in when they arrive here from the Baptist precincts of Cedar Rapids.

Mastery of these indigenous languages is not a walk in the park, folks, as many of you living in Michoacan already know if you´ve attempted to climb that mountain. Pardon the mixed metaphors.

Just for the record, this is not an anti-Christian Evangelical screed as, while Dawg is not a Christian nor a supplicant to any other theological discipline, I do continue to find humorous qualities in all who find succor in the clouds. If any of you who have limited experience in places like Chiapas, as does Dawg, want to continue a discussion of evangelism in the Mexican hinterlands , which started here in Chiapas long before the Spanish arrived - I´m game. I continue to suffer under the delusion that folks posting and reading about this iconoclastic forum are more interesting and worthy of inclusion in a discussion group than Ma and Pa Kettle from Ajijic posting on the insufferable Chapala.Com.

Last edited by Hound Dog on Mon 17 Oct 2011, 16:37; edited 1 time in total
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They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere :: Comments

Re: They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere
Post Thu 13 Oct 2011, 15:12 by Peter
Who speaks English there? I imagine that position has to administer to a Mexican (and indigenous) congregation but likely has to answer to an American god-council. Sounds like they also want a handyman and someone that can engineer facilities and improvements with a volunteer group or effectively oversee any contract help to be hired.

I have noticed a lot of fish stickers on cars and other symbology of the evangelist groups here in this 90% Catholic country. I also get Mexican-style Jehovah's Witnesses knocking on my door to give us Spanish Watchtower equivalents. LDS/Mormon is also present here as an American visitor we had wanted to find a church to attend during his stay. I notice very little, if anything, that goes against the grain of the predominant religion here. Then again there is generally more tolerance for divergent interests in Mexico, to a point.

Even the Catholic and indigenous groups have found some common ground to build a unique faith here as customs seem to diverge from American Catholicism in a number of ways. "Nuff said, people can be very touchy about their religion and I am not very aware of or sensitive to their points of concern since I am not a religious person. As long as it makes them feel good and doesn't require making others feel bad then I am fine with however they wish to practice.

True what you say about Michoacán indigenous faiths, they have their unique origins and many traces, pyramids, and customs are to be found here. Strongly indigenous communities co-exist with other communities around Pátzcuaro but they appear to be fairly open or somewhat accepting of other parts of the community. We have a number of unique customs and traditions here that make this a very colorful and enriching experience living here. I'm glad things are as they are here in that regard. All parties seem fairly open and tolerant of each other. That's best for all of us I think.
Re: They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere
Post Thu 13 Oct 2011, 20:28 by Amigo
Doh. God and Jesus don't speak Tzotzil, that's why. They speak English.
Hound Dog
Re: They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere
Post Fri 14 Oct 2011, 07:46 by Hound Dog
Very good, Amigo. Dawg was under the impression that God and Jesus spoke Amharic. Of course, if God and Jesus were father and son they probably dodn´t communicate in any language. That´s the same God who ordered Abraham to kill his son and, then, at the last minute, told Abe he was just kidding. That God is one amusing fellow.
Re: They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere
Post Fri 14 Oct 2011, 11:39 by Peter
He's a real card. Him and Satan got together for a few beers one day and got God to bragging about the loyalty of his flock. He tortured this Job guy something fierce, boils on his private parts, killed his wife and kids, all kinds of crazy sh¡t like that. Job was cool with it though. And God proved his point.

I get the idea Heaven is a pretty sterile place to spend eternity, no smoking, nit-picky rules. Pure piped-in harp music 24/7 and their cable TV is all 700 Club and Jim and Tammy reruns. I get the idea Hell is more like Las Vegas and they got the original Rat Pack guys hanging out in the lounge doing some of their bits. Even heard Elvis lost a few pounds and looks and dresses more like he did in the 50's now.

Supposedly all the waiters and staff are ones that didn't think they deserved to make the cut for Heaven and are working to pay off some sort of penance. They don't really have to do that, it's their own idea, but they make good tips and get to be around all the people having a good time, even if they don't think they themselves are allowed to join in the fun. They enjoy it, but that's how they work around that little contradiction. It's all good. Everybody is where they think they belong.
Re: They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere
Post Sat 15 Oct 2011, 13:25 by raqueteer
Some good posts on this thread.

Dawg, have you visited that little town near San Cristóbal which has the church that the priest is only permitted to enter one day a week? Way cool outing if you haven't. BTW do not even think about taking pictures. The other days, it's all about cutting off the heads of chickens and breaking eggs etc. They drink Coca Cola, then belch to expel any evil spirits which may be lurking within.

Lost Wages and hell, why yes. From the first miserable minute we arrived there right up until the moment we left, that was my feeling. My better half however is a very skilled roulette player. So much so, that we were watched constantly. I lost all my money the very first night, so was the bring drinks, mop sweat off the brow, and general factotum for the winner. 90% of the time, he wins, but never very much. Has a system he says, but can't explain it. Guess it's that mathematical mind. Usually he managed to win enough for dinner, but not enough for the $18 room service coffee in the morning. Sometimes he replaced my money supply, stating that mine was tainted, loser money. However, even winner money did not help.

Somehow Peter, Jim and Tammy are not likely to be up there in the clouds. JMHO, however Oral Roberts, may very well be. I usually substitute the other end of the alimentary canal for his first name, however in the interest of forum decorum will refrain.

As for myself, I'm looking for a smoking permitted, good food and drinks heaven, with a bunch of like minded people who like a few laughs, and know how to prepare artichokes. There would be no piped in Muzak, everyone could listen to their own music favorites, much like those little personal teevee screens on Quantas and Chilean LAN. Like LAN, colorful little mohair blankets would be provided. There would be real t.v. with real people and the truth, however unpleasant would always be told. In the case of highly unpalatable truths, Xanax would be supplied for the squeamish. The beds would be the sleep number puff up kind, and one could remain in them until noon, at which point brunch, preferably eggs benedict, would be brought in on nice wicker trays, the kind with side pockets for the reading material of your choice. No one would force you to attend the gym or any other horrifying type of exercise class. There would be no bad hair days.

Well, that's about it for now. If I think of any more heavenly things I'll post them. Oh, almost forgot, those really nice bathrobes, the fluffy cloud like ones, would be part of the package, and there would also be a great Chico's outlet store.
Hound Dog
Re: They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere
Post Mon 17 Oct 2011, 16:22 by Hound Dog
Well, raqueteer, I bellieve you are referring to San Juan Chamula, about 10 kilometers from San Cristóbal and at about 2,260 meters in elevation (versus about 2,000 meters for San Cristóbal and about 12 kilometers from the Zapatista stronghold of San Andres Larrainzar . Chamula is a Tzotil town somewhat noted for its seeming hostility to the tourists it attracts in droves to a large extent for its Sunday services at its famous and vastly overrated church services where, indeed, locals drink Coca-Cola during church services in order to induce reputed soul-releasing burping fits and perform some other exotic rituals such as eating eggs drawn from recently deceased chickens but Dawg has never seen them actually sacrifice a chicken in the church during services although, quite frankly, this tourist trap is a place one goes to only once like San Francisco´s Fisherman´s Wharf or Anaheim´s Disneyland. The guides there in Chamula can become a bit inventive with their tales such as the limited visits by priests but that is all in fun like the tales of how the ingestion of the water at Lourdes can cure cancer. Got to keep up the interest.

The services there, although a bit contrived for tourists, are interesting and it´s true that, during services in the church and after services in the church´s courtyard, the local parishioners get drunk on pox (pronounced "posh") which is a powerfrul distillate of sugar cane juice. Dawg really likes that tradition where everybody gets loaded during and after church services having come from a background as a Southern Presbyterian in the 1950s when Welch´s non-alcoholic grape juice was used for Jesus´ blood rather than fermented wine because everybody in the congregation was a closet drunk and hypocrite in the tradition of the deep south and, furthermore, Jesus would never nave drunk wine.

There are, as one later discovers, far more interesting church services in less tourist oriented towns where you may be the only foreigner observing the rituals. Great, colorful rituals and music.

By the way, on your mention that you understand that photographs in Chamula whether in the street or the church are forbidden - that is true that photographs can only be taken with specific permission per photograph and with the payment of a fee for each picture. If starngers touring the town even walk around town with a camera in hand there is a good chance they will raise the ire of locals unless they have paid for permission to take specifically allowed photographs from town authorities so my advice is to leave your camera at home if you visit this somewhat hostile place or, upon arrive seek permission immediately to use the camera for certain allowed photographs. Otherwise, the tourist risks having the camera or the camera chip confiscated and, perhaps, destroyed. Alternatively, just avoid this tourist trap altogether. There are plenty of indigenous villages around San Cristóbal that are not so hostile to strangers and some are downright friendly.

Last edited by Hound Dog on Wed 19 Oct 2011, 09:05; edited 5 times in total
Re: They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere
Post Mon 17 Oct 2011, 18:00 by raqueteer
That would be one and the same Dawg. We, were lucky enough to have our own guide on that trip. A most interesting young man who had a wealth of information about all kinds of things. We spent almost a week with him and went everywhere without a minutes worry. Yaxchilan, Palenque, Bonampak etc. etc. I had organized a small group who all planned to attend a dinner dance in Tuxtla Gutierrez, and it seemed too good an opportunity to pass up. Needless to say a great time was had by all. We also visited your home town there and BTW you guys have a pretty reasonable chinese place, YMMV.

Now, this young man, being half Mexican and half American actually gave some credence to the egg and chicken business, and swore that it had worked on one of his children who the M.D. had been unable to cure. We went during the week and the entire church was full of the egg and chicken crowd, with the priest hovering around outside. We were left alone by the hawkers of goods. There was one chicken in there who appeared to be nearing an unfortunate end, and the floors were covered with rushes or straw. Many eggs in evidence, and also masses of candles stuck to the floor which denoted the size of the supplicants problem.

I have to agree with the Fishermans Wharf analogy, and Anaheim. Both best left alone. However we did enjoy our trip to San Juan Chamula, and were fortunate enough not to be pestered. The locals had tremendous respect for our guide.

Your church story reminds me of our own church, at which my father was an elder. They also served Welch's grape juice, and for the very same reason. Now most of the congregation were pretty far from being closet drunks and after church many of them went off to various locations to partake of what would be considered a VERY liberal number of alcoholic bevvies, the size of each one was also substantial, as in mind numbing. For my father and his drinking buddies, the expression "the sun is over the yardarm" meant that it was at least partially visible. So, at the mention of hostilities after imbibing the alcohol of choice, I can assure you that there was no lack of those either up in the frozen north. I remember a few pictures, some of which were probably later bitterly regretted, of people sitting on the can with lampshades on their heads. Presumably pictures should also have been prohibited in Canada, however the Canucks apparently hadn't got that figured out at least at the time.
Hound Dog
Re: They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere
Post Mon 17 Oct 2011, 18:46 by Hound Dog
Let me correct an inference of my comments preceding yours which Dawg thoroughly enjoyed having apparently shared the pleasures of provincial life with you whether in the piney woods of the Alabama Coastal Plain, the Frozen Canadian North or small fishing villages on the Atlantic Coast of France as in my wife´s memories:

Most of the folks in those villages and towns in all those places whether among the religiously faithful or unfaithful of any faith were boozers and everybody knew it so maybe I misused the term "closet drunks" when, what I meant is that, unlike San Francisco, everybody in that self-righteous South Alabama culture in those days went back home to become wasted. In Dawg´s native South Alabama there was an often stated axiom that, "Nothing shouts whiskey like a brown paper bag." and even the state liquor control stores were popularly known as "package stores". I´m sure Provincial Canada and rural Alabama had much in common in that regard. The difference, when it comes to this subject between rural Alabama and my wife´s rural France is that Alabamians got drunk before dining and the French, who were only moderate imbibers before dining, got drunk during dining. That is a fundamental and big difference between those two cultures. I suspect that the reason French food was generally far superior to Alabama food was because, while the French were cooking they were still in charge of their faculties while, in Alabama, by the time the charcoal was ready for the main course, the chef was in his/her cups and couldn´t remember where he/she put the steaks plus the bearnaise sauce had long ago separated.

Also misleading is my advice that a visit to Chamula should be avoided. What I meant to say was that, as in the case of Disneyland or Fisherman´s Wharf, repeated visits should be avoided although I must admit that, when we lived for a decade or so in San Francisco´s North Beach near Fisherman´s Wharf, we repeatedly visited the wharf in the summer to watch the eastern tourists in their shorts freezing their asses off in that cold San Francisco summer fog while waiting for the ferry to Alcatraz. God, was that fun.

"(Hick!) Pass the Madera, my dear."
Re: They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere
Post Mon 17 Oct 2011, 21:27 by raqueteer
Hahahahaha! Priceless. I remember many a night when wee Dave, ( 6 ft, and well over 200 pounds) got so wasted before hitting the barbeque for his personally selected steak, very well marbled and marinated, as was the chef, that the results were far less than optimal.
A decent bearnaise was similarly out of the question, since one must be relatively sober for that.

As for the provincial atmosphere in Canada, I well remember having to line up after filling out a form at the liquor store. No liquor was on display, and one always felt a bit guilty even picking up a little wine for dinner. Naturally it all came in a brown paper bag.

At our summer place, the entire town was dry, so wee Dave and I, plus his drinking buddies for the weekend, set off for a more northern location, cash in hand in a Pontiac Parisienne rag top.

Those were the days my friend.

Dave's boat was appropriately named the Martini. Never ever to be forgotten was the infamous day when wee David set off, his merry band of men in tow into dangerous waters. They had all been well into the sauce prior to the voyage, and fortunately were feeling no pain. About 10 minutes in, one of them exclaimed, hey Dave, aren't you getting a bit close to shore? Nonsense said the skipper, 9 sheets to the wind, I've navigated these waters for years, and know every shoal and rock for miles around. Only moments later Dave grounded the thing on what was luckily the only sand spit in our rather rocky bay.

Needless to say, wee Dave amongst whole host of unrepentant drinkers, was a legend.

Off for a postprandial brandy, if there's any left. cheers
Hound Dog
Re: They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere
Post Tue 18 Oct 2011, 09:06 by Hound Dog
Well, raqueteer, it appears we Alabamians and Canadians have more in common than I realized. Alabama also had a state liquor store system where no liquor was on display and one not only had to wait in line but, back in those Jim Crow days (1950s) in Alabama there were two separate lines each with its own door; one marked "Whites Only" and one maked "Coloreds Only" - but, of couse all the clerks were white males who would take your request when you finally got to the head of the line and disappear into the mysterious back room where the ttreasures were kept.

I also grew up in a "dry" county where the phrase for driving across the county line to the nearest "wet" county to buy booze was referred to euphemistically (just about every evil thing including normal bodily functions was referred to with a euphemism in the Deep South of those days) as "going up the road" which always meant only one thing and that was to bring back the famous brown bag from the state package store. Of course, bringing back a trunk full of booze into a dry county was "bootlegging" and illegal but nobody ever got arrested unless they lived in a squalid trailer park and had no money to grease the deputy´s palm in the event they were stopped which hardly ever happened unless they were already three sheets to the wind.

Dawg notes that county option prohibtion promoted, just by its existence, the consumption of copious amounts of booze, beer and really bad wine among all the folks of all races except, ahem, ostensibly, the Southern Baptists of course (wink, wink).
Re: They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere
Post Tue 18 Oct 2011, 12:20 by raqueteer
Many similarities to be certain. We did not have a big black and white issue, however my nannies were always British, and they were meaner than cat dirt I can assure you. I loved our housekeeper Francis who was black, and a gentle soul. Seventh day Adventist.

Wee Dave never travelled anywhere without his little leather booze case. Quite enough in there to get a very good buzz on, but it was compact. Normally he took the train up north, and was a great favorite with the engineer, with whom he shared his bounty. If not, he always stopped at the cemetery, which was exactly half way, for a private tipple.

Dave was a surgeon (gasp) and once in his cups could go on for hours, with the best off color jokes I've ever heard. Seems that the anesthesiologists had little else to do during their "working" hours, so Dave had nightly sessions at the dinner table of "have you heard this one yet?" There were very very few euphemisms in Dave's lexicon. He did draw the line at one currently popular word, which was reserved exclusively for very serious incidents such as hitting your thumb with a hammer, in which case, even for a woman, it was O.K.

Being a Canadian, Dave made it his business to get cozy with distributors of inkahol, and had very regular case load deliveries straight from the warehouse of many many cases of his personal favorite Rye whisky, and my mothers Rum. No lining up. In fact Dave made it his business to find the very finest purveyors of meat, cheese and other foodstuffs. Every day at lunch, he would write letters of either praise, or if disappointed, of rightful indignation. Either kind usually produced the desired results and we ate very well indeed, provided of course that Dave was relatively sober, or that it was not Francis' day off.

I imagine that the U.S., home of prohibition, was considerably less lenient that Canada, who was the supplier.

They´re Everywhere, They´re Everywhere

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