- My Spanish is poor at best, and sometimes I inadvertantly mix in a little 'Mexican'. But here are a few rules which might make reading 'Macho' a little easier:

- While it is possible to render accents on certain letters (a', e', i', o', n~) on the web, I have yet to figure out how to do it. For the omission, I apologize.

- The suffix 'ita/ito' is used as a dimunitive, expressing familiarity or endearment. Thus, while Ramon's nickname is 'Macho', he is called 'Machito'.
'Chiquita' would be more familiar than 'Chica', or could imply a younger or smaller girl.

- You can sometimes tell if a name is masculine or feminine by the last letter - if the last letter is an 'a', then -maybe- the name is feminine, while the same rule would suggest that a masculine name would end in 'o'.
Thus, Ramon is 'Machito' while male and 'Machita' while female.

- The Spanish exclamation or question precedes the body of the sentence with the exclamation point or question mark -inverted-. Again, when I figure out how to make these characters appear correctly when read on the web, I will correct my chapters. "Lo siento".

And, lastly, an apology for representing Mexicans and Indians as distinct and different in this story. There are hundreds of different Indian groups in Mexico, forming a vital part of the nation's population. Any attempt to portray any one group as being more `Mexican' than another would be misleading.

anachronism - a person, event, or mechanism which is foreign to the time period in which it is portrayed. When something is 'out of place' in the story, it is called an 'anachronism'. You will probably find some things in Macho Caballo which fit this category. Let me know, if you do. I am trying to keep a list. (^_^)

bebito - baby boy (informal). "mi bebita" would be "my baby girl".

chico - small, used for young boys.

chica - young girl.

corazon - Should be corazo'n: literally "heart". "mi corazon" would mean "My heart".

Don - Title placed before the first name of a respected man.
Notice that it does not denote a specific rank or position.

Dona - Should be don~a. Title placed before the first name of a respected woman.

Gordo - fat. In this case, Gordito was named when he was young and chubby. Adolesence made him taller and slender.

hombre - man, mature male.

Macho - Masculine, virile, strong.

Mama - Should be Mama'. Ramon's name for his mother.

Papa - Should be Papa'. Ramon's name for his father.

pero - but.
For the Japanophiles, "pero..." would be the equivalent of "demo..."

que - how, what (in an exclamation).
For the Japanophiles, "Que?" would be the equivalent of "Nani?"
(note: This is a very flexible word!)

Ramon - Should be Ramo'n, but I'm having trouble figuring out how to make the accent work on this machine. Pronounced "Rah - Moan".

Other Stuff:

Machito is the dimunitive form of Macho, and may be used for young or dear children. Machito is also the name of a spicy sausage found mostly in northern Mexico, composed of the usual ingredients plus the brains, organs and gonads of the contributing animal. Presumably, one has to be 'macho' to be able to eat it.

If you call a woman 'Macha', you had better first be on good terms with her. It implies that she is masculine, strong, or aggressive. These can be good qualities, but may not be considered complimentary in all cases.

Likewise, a girl could be called Machita because she was energetic, strong, or bossy. A tomboy. In Ramon's case, it is not only appropriate, it is a joke.