By chance, today Mads and I went to refill our paint bucket while the older kids were having their break around noon. Our painting gig really only takes place in the upper portion of the school, where most of our friends max out at around 9 years old. But, today, we got to interact with four 14-year-old girls who were congregating around the school’s only swingset, chatting away with an exasperated, I’m-to-cool-for-this air about them. My 14-year-old self probably would have slinked away, which I wanted to do once I remembered my rather elementary level of Spanish and French accent, but, alas, our paint bucket happened to be situated right next to that damn swingset.

So, I sidled up next to Mads — who had already fearlessly engaged them — and tried my best to comprehend, waiting for an opportunity to chime in. After a while though, the conversation diverted to the most basic girl-to-girl topics like, boyfriends and hair color — I forgot what it’s like to be 14.

What they were most interested in was whether Mads’ short hair was common for girls in the US, and was our hair color natural. We also told them that I used to have practically no hair — like a chico — and that our novios have/had hair past their shoulders — a tidbit they gobbled up with giggles. Going a step further, Mads told them how Dave and I had met, at a Halloween party, when I was dressed as a male character from a TV show who was bald, wore glasses, was painted blue, and had a mustache. This, they relished. Especially when we didn’t know the word for mustache and had to mime it. Gossip really is the way to a teenage girl’s heart.

Las palabras del dia
El bigote – mustache
La clava – nail

August 21, 2013