cada vez más mexicano

So I’ve been working on an interpretation of this ad for a while– it’s for Volaris, a budget airline whose recent campaign focuses on their US destinations. This one, awesomely, highlights Oakland.

I had already fallen in love with the tagline, “Estados Unidos cada vez más mexicano,” meaning “United States each time more Mexican.” I think overall it means each time you visit the States you come back more Mexican, but the implication is also that the United States gets more Mexican each time you go. Weighing which meaning stands out is of course the beauty of it for me.

But I was a little stumped as to what “Big oh the” would mean. This is what I was trying to interpret, til the other day when I saw another one, also for LAX & OAK, which said, “Car um ba.”

Big oh the.

In Estación del Metro Rosario, the Barranca del Muerto-bound track.

And so I realized, the copy on these ads must represent an English-speaker pronouncing Spanish words, like caramba.

Which makes the above bigote. That’s “mustache” in English.

UPDATE (16 Nov 2009 12:23): I saw another one on Friday that says “Thor Till Uh.” So “tortilla” sort of the way we say “armadilla” [sic] or how Napoleon Dynamite’s grandma says “quesadilla.” The “th” to me is somewhere between overcompensating for the tendency in US/Canadian English to soften hard “t” sounds, and reflecting the Spanish-speaking tendency to pronounce an English “th” as “t.”

originally posted 11 November, 2009 @ 00:12


2 responses to “cada vez más mexicano

  1. I’m so glad you solved that, I thought it was a play on “The Big O,” as in Oakland. I guess it sorta is.

    • Haha, I’m glad that you’re willing to take it to the next level– that interpretation occurred to me also.

      Do you think Volaris sees Oakland that way though? I mean, they did choose the word “bigote,” so they must be pretty cool…

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