Once upon a time, my Esposo and I were newly-weds and I learned a valuable lesson on how water is not always your friend.
Esposo was having his first guy hangout at the house…some Fraternity event, so no women allowed. Except me of course, because someone had to cook, right? Yes, that sounds sexist. But it was actually a pot luck style event, and I was just helping out. But it was still super importante to me as it would be the first time my hubby would have the guys over since we’d been married and they’d see the Esposa running her house.
Anyway, when party time came around I was on it. Being all cute in my awesome outfit with my awesome new hair cut, in the cocina [kitchen] cooking up some sides. And then I realize…there is no salsa. TAN TAN TAN! [DUN DUN DUN] Like, at all. Not even Tabasco. Damnit-que verguenza! [how embarrassing] I had to show these brown guys that Jake had married a cool, modern, educated progressive woman who was also rooted in her domestic goddess like ways the mujeres [women] of her familia taught her. I had to make sure all my guests were accounted for. Being Mexican American is hard work and exhausting. I have to ketchup and mustard for the fries AND Valentina and Tabasco for, well eveything else. Just like Mr. Quintanilla said: ya gotta “be more Mexican than the Mexicans, and more American than the Americans.” Straddle the lines of the border (kinda like how I straddled my husband that morning-HIYOO-we were newly-weds you know how it is). I digress.
But seriously…the guys were already eating and I couldn’t just run to the store for salsa. That would mean, that I didn’t have it in the house, and what kind of self-respecting decent Latina bride doesn’t have SALSA in her refrigerator?! I keep calm, check the fridge and all is right in my blended red, white, blue and green household: I have jalapenos, tomatoes, onions, and cilantro-PHEW! As some of the guys and my hubby walk in and out of the kitchen they notice me chopping up my ingredients at Top Chef speeds making a delicious Pico de Gallo….I see their eyes light up and I think I am totally WINNING at this wife shit. (Keep in mind, my husband is really excited only because at this point in my marriage-I never cooked.) I squeeze in some limes, and take my trophy out onto the patio where the dudes have assembled. The guys are appreciative and comment on how lucky my man is to have me (que sweet, right?) Esposo kisses me and very sweetly kicks me out of the area, as they have “secret brotherhood” stuff to tend to. I get it, I’m in a sorority myself, so I bid them adieu and head to my room.
I stroll into the bathroom feeling like a champ. I impressed his friends, the house was clean and smelled of Fabuloso, and my makeup was still as they say, “on fleek.” I was feeling so great it was like I was peeing glitter.
“OK, OK Janeli,” my inner voice says “ya did your Esposa duty, now its time to wipe, get into bed and watch some Netflix.
Ouch. Oh. Shit. Ow..*GASP!
OMG I didn’t wash my hands after I made the Pico and….AAHHH SHIT!
“Pelo,” I say to myself “el pelo cura cuando te enchiles” [your hair helps when you burn yourself]. Just use your hair to run the spice out…stay calm girl.
FAHK! Remember that haircut I mentioned? Although it did its job showing off my clavicles, it failed to stretch my long torso into my nether regions to help ya girl out! I pull, wiggle,bend and contort as best I can, but nada. And I am on FIRE.
These next couple of minutes, probably just a minute and a half, really, feel like hours.
I go into an internal crisis management mode. Do I yell for help? I can’t! The guys were distracted and on the other side of the house. Plus, my esposo and I have been married less than a year at this point, too soon for him to see me in such a compromising position. He could totally take my brown card for this.
So, what do I do? Pos, What any other new esposa bred from a tight nit family would: call Mama.
“Ma,” I say in a panicked whisper
“Hi mi’ja. Como…”
“Ma, I made pico de gallo a-”
“Really? Guau, mi’jia y con que-”
“Yeah, and then I came to bathroom an-”
“Hhhhiiiii,” that’s a Latino gasp, by the way, “te enchilastes el cuchiflies?!”
[you spiced your coochiflies?]
She laughs. Histerically.
“Ma! It’s not funny! What do I do?!”
“Your hair, mi’ja!” she manages to get out between laughs.
“My hair doesn’t reach.” At this point my mom calms down a little bit, probably after she realizes that if I don’t get help soon, she will not have grandchildren.
“Ay pos…” For the first time ever, my mom was speechless for a minute, “baňate!”
So I jump in the shower and…..
Well, here’s a tip: Never drink water after burning your mouth with jalapenos. Follow the same rule for your vagina.
Thankfully, mostly for my husband,I recovered. But didn’t make Pico de Gallo for about a year.