"Gringo" -- Where'd That Word Come From?

There are two stories that "this" Gringo has heard and believes have merit.
  1. Like the (well, some at least) dictionary says, it comes from a word meaning "gibberish" or incomprehensible language, like we English speakers mean when we say "It's all Greek to me." And, be it noted, "Greek" in Spanish is "Griego" which is only one slight letter different than (from) "Gringo" -- pretty neat, eh?

  2. But there is also testimony -- which this Gringo has heard on the radio -- that someone's grandfather said they used to hear the American soldiers marching in Veracruz during the occupation in the early 20th century (during the Mexican Revolution -- behold the American Empire). They used to wear olive-green uniforms and call out while marching, "Green Go, Green Go, Green Go!"

But... someone also said that someone said that someone's friend's mother put her baby's pet rat dictionary in the microwave and it hitchiked home with a ghost, so........

This Gringo thinks it really doesn't matter. It's like the argument for or against the existence of "Tia" Juana -- why bother? Why bother to spend so much energy arguing what is essentially a mythological point -- and some mythology is true, depending on your beliefs, yes? No. DefinITELY NOT! How DARE You even mention the barest possibility that there ever was, was not, was want wasrtntr?! Haw Dowr EYE? Yu?!!?! TEK THATTTTTT !!!!!!!!!!!!!

More importantly, everyone knows the word. It exists and everyone knows it means foreigner for good or for bad. What is REAL, what is happening recently, conincident with the change of centuries from 20 to 21, is that the name "gringo" has moved away from being an insult to being strictly a statement of fact. A gringo is a foreigner, most usually North American United Statesian, in Mexico.

And EVen MORE Important, this Gringo is called Gringo because his landlord calls me/him this/that.  It is my sobrenombre, my nickname.  So there.  I am "Gringo."   Everyone around the park on Third Street knows me by that nickname. I've lived there two years now, and....   Yeah... I do like it... and so does my identical cousin Michael... but he's kind of mooning around since he found out he fell in love with his hermana... but that would be telling..... .  .  .   .    .

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Copyright 2001, 2004 Daniel Charles Thomas