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Wednesday, May 16, 2007

En español

Usually I burn through the dvr of the results show from Dancing With the Stars. Not the one from this week. It had two things that I absolutely love.


And This. That's Joaquín Cortez---flamenco dancer.

But first, let me tell you about Enrique.

While I was on my mission in Mexico (1996-1997), Enrique was on tour in Mexico. I saw posters of him everywhere. I heard his music on the bus. He was the brand new thing and I bought his cassette before I came home (I also bought one of Shakira's early tapes). I loved that tape. Years later when I became a Spanish teacher, I made my students love Enrique. I was a working woman so I had upgraded to the CD but I made them learn how to sing Miente. It is actually an excellent lesson on commands. Miente. Díme que me amas. Júrame que nunca piensas alejarte de mi. Dude. I love this song.

It wasn't long before he hit it big with his English language album. My students were thinking they were all that when they told their friends they already knew who he was and were already quite proficient in singing his music en español. We started learning the spanish lyrics to his popular english hits. Ritmo Total. Heroe. Later came Escapar. Heroe provides an excellent lesson to all who are unfamiliar with the actual castellano (Spanish-from Spain) accent. Enrique is from Spain--although with his superstar father, Julio, he spent a lot of time in Miami. Escapar is also a good example of castellano and is good when teaching the future tense.

My students began to realize how much I love Enrique when one day I decided we should celebrate his birthday (May 8, 1975). I'm sorry to say that I think a lot of my students actually have that date etched in their brains because I used it as an extra credit question more than once. I missed noting Enrique's birthday this year on the blog...shame shame. I think this post is more than making up for it. One of my students actually gave me a framed picture of him for my desk. I still have it. I also gave extra points for any student that could bring in a photo of Enrique showing both ears at once. Now that he's had the mole removed (Why? Okay, why not?), it is a little easier to find them...but not much. Am I the only one that's noticed this? Yep. Pretty sure.

Carl went with me to an Enrique Iglesias concert (2004, I think) in Chicago. We had an excellent time. He appreciates Enrique but was quick to point out that he's not as good as Neil Diamond. Point taken. But, I don't exactly want a picture of Neil Diamond on my desk. I lie. I do want a picture of him on my desk. Why don't I have a picture of him on my desk? I guess because he doesn't speak Spanish. Pobre Neil.

And now, on to flamenco.

In 2001, I went to Spain. Several of my students went and my mom and sister even came along. It was a great trip and I've been wanting to go back ever since. One of the highlights of the trip was the flamenco dancing. We saw a basic flamenco show in Sevilla but the best dancing we saw was in Granada in the caves by the Alhambra. The gypsies would put on these dancing shows in narrow caves. I fell in love with the music and the dancing. I have several CDs of flamenco music and I had a couple of flamenco videos that I would have my students watch.

I haven't taught Spanish for 2 years now so I don't listen to Enrique as often (he's still on my ipod so he's not totally out of my life) and I most definitely don't watch or listen to flamenco much anymore. This DWTS episode just brought back a bunch of memories and I couldn't help but blog about it!


  1. You know...I was watching last night as well and thinking that Enrique was muey caliente. I hope that is right, but if not I don't care. You get the point.

    I also love Flamenco. I really want to learn how to dance flamenco. I did a research paper in one of my folk dance minor classes about flamenco. I would love to go to Spain one day and see flamenco dancing! Maybe for our 20 year anniversary at the rate we are going!

  2. I didn't realize you loved Neil. (I knew about you and Enrique. :) I went to a Neil Diamond concert in SLC probably in 2001 or 2002? I got free tickets from a sales rep I worked with - we were in box seats and everything. Anyway, I have never seen an old guy work a crowd of middle-aged women into such a frenzy! It was muy impressivo! He shook his groove thang and crooned and put on a pretty good show. In my mind's eye I can still see him on stage singing "Sweet Caroline", his black pants hiked way high over his white collared shirt, and a red bra being thrown up at him. Good times.

  3. Does Carl just compare everyone to Neil Diamond? Remember he said that about Chris Daughtry. . .well, how about all top 10 American Idols? 'Cuz I just bought our tickets!! Woo HOO!! (The girls were already making their signs when I cam home last night!!)

  4. Maren-We've seen Neil in concert twice now and he's always awesome!!!

    Wendy--I'm so excited! My mom and sister went to last season's AI concert. Now I get to see BLAKE and SANJAYA! Maybe I'll break out the pony-hawk again. Will your kids just die if I did that? And about Neil...Carl hasn't been to many concerts---just ones I've dragged him to and Neil has been the best by far so everyone gets compared to him.

  5. Gayla2:53 PM

    Isn't Neil Diamond dead? I had to Wiki him to see that he was born in 1941, only 65 years old. Seems like he has been 65 years old for a long time.

  6. Enrique looks like he needs a nap. haha.

    Remember when we took those tango classes at Purdue? Good times.

  7. You are so funny, Christy. I bet you were a great teacher.

  8. You are too funny! It made me laugh that you used his b-day as extra credit. hehe I guess if your the teacher you can do whatever you want!

  9. Christy,
    I totally saw Enrique in SLC in I think 2004? It was probably a year after the Escape/Heroe album came out. I agree--he's a hottie. If you ever hit a concert of his again and I'm close by--I'm there! Viva Enrique. :)