¡Eso sí que es! Yea, SOCKS!

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Speaking of socks, have you heard the one about the Spanish-speaking tourist who went into an American department store to buy socks? His English was…so so. Turns out he found his way to the Men’s Wear department where a young lady offered to help him.
“Quiero calcetines” said the man.
“I don’t speak Spanish, but we have some very nice suits over here.” said the salesperson.
“No, no quiero trajes. Quiero calcetines.” said the man.
“Well, (still unsure) these shirts are on sale this week.” declared the salesperson.
“No, no quiero camisas. Quiero calcetines.” repeated the man.
“I still don’t know what you’re trying to say. We have some fine pants on this rack.” offered the salesperson, beginning to lose patience.
“No, no quiero pantalones. Quiero calcetines.” insisted the man.
“These sweaters are top quality.” the salesperson probed.
“No, no quiero súeter. Quiero calcetines.” said the man.
“Our undershirts are over here.” the salesperson fumbled more frantically.
“No, no quiero camisetas. Quiero calcetines.” the man repeated.
As they passed the underwear counter, the man spotted a display of socks and happily pointed them out as he proclaimed “¡Eso sí que es!”
“Well, if you could spell it, why didn’t you do that in the first place?” asked the exasperated salesperson.

Review: This is an old one. I first learned of it from a neighbor, a gentleman from Bolivia who taught Spanish. Spell out S-O-C-K-S, and unless you’re from parts of Spain in which case you won’t need this trick, you’ll be accidentally uttering a phrase in Spanish, which can roughly be translated as: that’s it or that’s correct or that’s right.

The Log Cabin We Grew Up With in Canonsburg, PA

John McMillan’s Log School, a frontier latin school established in the 1780s, once stood about a mile south of Canonsburg, Pennsylvania.  In 1895 it was moved to its current location in front the Canonsburg Middle School at the corner of Central Ave. and, of course, College St. The Middle School used to be the Canon-McMillan Junior High School, when I was a student and when I did my student teaching at the 9th-grade level in Spanish. Before the Junior High School it was Canonsburg High School, before that it was Jefferson College, and before that, Canonsburg Academy.  In 1865 Jefferson College merged with Washington College in Washington, PA to form Washington & Jefferson College, and because of the ties to Canonsburg Academy and Jefferson College, W&J can rightfully claim to have been established in 1781.

See a related post featuring digital paintings of Old Main on W&J’s campus and downtown Washington, PA, as seen from campus.  Click here.

I indicated that I had done my student teaching at Canon-McMillan Junior High School, but what I didn’t mention was that, when I was in the 9th grade taking my first Spanish class, my teacher was Mr. James Podboy, a native of Canonsburg and a W&J graduate. I eventually attended W&J, studied Spanish language and literature, and my one and only Spanish professor was Dr. Antonio Moreno, who had been Jim Podboy’s Spanish professor as well.  So, right there in the shadow of John McMillan’s log cabin on College St. in Canonsburg, PA, where Jefferson College once stood, Professor Moreno and Mr. James Podboy ushered me into the teaching profession as a W&J graduate in a pretty darn hometown sort of way.

John McMillan's Log Cabin

Technical: I used a reference photo but sketched this freehand in Procreate followed by some photo-editing tweaks in iPhoto.