Thursday, September 22, 2005

Dominican Piropos

September 20, 2005

I am surprised at how many men I have given birth to since I have been here. Well, not really, but one would think that I am the mother of many if he or she counted how many times Dominican tigres called me, “Mamí.” Seriously, I am not your “mamí,” and my not acknowledging you when you yell precious nothings at me should send you that message.

I am also not your muñeca, your princesa, or your niña and I do not answer to “pssssp.” If there is something stuck in your teeth and you need to take it out, dental floss usually works well. And, no, I do not want you to be my “papí.” I lived without my father all my life, and I think I have gotten along just fine. Thank you for your offer.

Dominican piropos are a way of life here. The normal procedure is as follows: a woman walks by, and a man watches her as she approaches him. First, he gazes at her face, then her breasts, then her hips, and then after she walks by, her behind. Just after the woman passes him, he yells something at her: “Eres bella,” “Me refresca cuando me pasa,” and the list goes on. Most women never stop but men yell piropos anyway.

It is like they are conditioned to yell piropos. In fact, just as I was walking to the university this morning, young boys were “psssping” at me. They are Dominican tigres in training. In many ways, men seem to feel the need to hit on every women passer-by as a way to prove their masculinity.

My twin sister is pursuing a project on the effects of colonialism in Jamaica regarding sexuality and race. She is particularly interested in how the oppression and the demasculinization of Jamaican men affected their masculinity and sexuality. She will research to learn whether colonizers sodomized Jamaican men and raped their women. She is looking at the case of AIDS and closeted homosexuality in men and their need to prove the manhood every chance they get. I believe the same could be argued for any colonized country, and definitely, for the Dominican Republic.

Other than that, I will continue walking pass the Dominican tigres, who will continue to call me “mamí,” “preciosa,” and the myriad of other names that they can muster up.


Anonymous Catharine Wright said...


What an excellent opening you have to this sassy, empowered piece that vents what must be your frustration and irritation with cat calls in a way that's so precise. I love the part about dental floss--your sarcasm there--and I find the way that you quickly contextualize the situation--looking at colonialism--so important. Lots of layers here. What an excellent little piece of writing.


6:20 PM  
Anonymous tillybummie said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

10:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Es verdad que tu eres muy guapa.

6:51 PM  
Anonymous La Loni said...

Okay, not to downplay this blog, but can i just say that, "me refescas cuando me pasas" is by far one of the most amusing piropos I have ever heard. and I've heard a lot. I LOVE IT. so much, in fact, that the next time I see you, I'll be sure to definitely use that particular piropo. Mami.

2:17 AM  
Anonymous pheromone oil said...

good info

11:41 AM  
Anonymous androstenone said...

thanks for the info

9:15 PM  
Blogger blogworkorange said...

Es verdad, los dominicanos nos comemos a las mujeres con los ojos cuando pasan.

8:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You should be proud at least that you are being called mami and princesa because Not only Dominican Guys is The Latin Community. And I don't think is nice to stereotype the Dominicans,, because as Colombian that I am We all say piropo if you in our neighborhood and you pass by the HUY MAMITA QUISIERA SER PAPA FRITA PARA ACOMPAñAR ESA PECHUGA.....

11:31 PM  

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