Talking in Circles, Mexican-Style

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Okay…it’s time for a more light-hearted post after my stint as an investigative couch reporter these past few days. This post is courtesy of my ever lovely husband, Armando.  He’s one of those people who has the gift-of-the-gab.  But at times, he doesn’t know when to stop talking.  It is perhaps a bit cultural.  I recently learned the Mexican phrase “¡estás cantinfleando!“, which means talking in circles but never really saying anything.

Perfect example was when we were planning our wedding in Mexico.  Armando took on the role of translator between myself and our Spanish-speaking wedding coordinator.  One day, he called to ask her a question that I had.  After talking for several minutes with her on the phone, I was sure that he was getting all the explicit details so he could reiterate the answer I was waiting for.  When he hung up I asked what she said and he replied, “She doesn’t know the answer yet.”  What?!  But they had been talking for several minutes, there must have been some useful information exchanged.  But no, there wasn’t.  The time spent on the phone was just the process of her talking around in circles, saying in every which way possible the same thing, that she didn’t have the answer yet.

Armando does this without even knowing.  It can be cute at times and at other times, I’ve just had to shake my head.  Last week, he was travelling out of town so we were talking on the phone one night.  He talked for probably 15 minutes without taking a breath to see if I had anything to add to the conversation or if I was still even on the phone.  When I pointed this out to him, he laughed, saying that there may have been a time or two where a call was dropped while he was talking and he didn’t even realize it.

Case in point…he has been patiently waiting for a document to arrive in the mail.  This week he called the department in charge to check the status of the parcel.  On hold for a long time, he had the speaker phone on.  When someone finally came on the line, he grabbed the receiver and started to talk and talk, explaining his situation.  Once he said everything he had to say, he waited for a response but none came.

“Hello?”  I heard him say.  “Hello?  Hello?”  Then I heard a loud growl from him followed by a few choice words in Spanish.

He forgot he had put the phone on mute.  And because he gave a lengthy explanation for his call without taking a breath for the other person to respond, which would have given him a chance to realize that they couldn’t hear him, the person had hung up on him.

I couldn’t help but laugh!  I think a bit cultural but maybe a bit of Armando thrown in there too.  His chattiness is one of the things that I love about him though. :)

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