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By Chuck Strouse
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By Terrence McCoy
By Ryan Yousefi
By Ciara LaVelle, Kat Bein, Carolina Del Busto, and Liz Tracy
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A sandy-blond, middle-aged woman with thick-framed spectacles answers the glass front door. Her name is Valentina, a Catholic woman whose father is from Yugoslavia and mother is from Argentina. She leads me to a room where the deck of tarot cards rests on a table.
"Guen was de las taym ju had a riden?" Valentina asks. I inform her it is my first tarot card reading. "O, berri guut," she replies. "I layk furs-taymars."
She instructs me to cut the deck three times. Then she grabs the cards and begins to lay each one down face-up. "I guill tel ju de trood," Valentina explains. "De guut and de bad."
According to the cards, she says, I need to look after my health. "En six mons, ju mae haf problems wid jur blud," Valentina says. "Et cuud be hai colesterol or hai blud preshur. Ju nid tu exersaese mor."
I would also start something new in my career, she adds. Well, becoming a road sign entrepreneur is definitely on my horizon, I tell her. "Ah," she says. "Guell, de cards sae in tu jers, ju will maek moni. Bot not naow."
I inquire: What about my future lady friend? "I sens daubt," Valentina concedes.
She points to a card depicting a woman under the pale moonlight. "Der es a guman," Valentina asserts. "But shi es duen blak majeek on ju. Shi dun't guant ju tu sockcid. Only fale, fale."
Who is Teresa Guzman ("Der es a guman")? And why would she want me to fail ("fale, fale"), or was it fall?
I was dumbfounded. Here I was searching for a woman, and she had already found me. And it wasn't good.
Valentina instructs me to surround myself with only positive people and energy. Before I leave, she offers her assistance: "I kan halp ju. I kan du a klensin — una limpieza — for ju. But et es goin tu caost ju sum moni."
One hundred fifty dollars to be exact.
What a wonderful article, the best kind of human interest story. You are a great writer, and to think (grin), you are a Nica! (I joke, I stepped foot in Nicaragua, once, only about fifteen feet).Frank, thank you for the fun story. I have a sign picture to send you, it's fresh and here in the Grove, not quite like your thrust, but it shows our local color.
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I hope these fools take down some of those ugly signs. I live in Libery city and these signs are plastered all over the place. Liberty city already have issues with litter, the last thing they need is more litter. If this guy is trying to flip houses, does it not work against them to litter a place that they are trying to sell a house in. I don't mind a few signs but they are putting up hundreds of signs that are making our neighborhood look bad. CLEAN UP OR SHIP OUT!!!
Great Article. I have always thought about doing the exact same thing, maybe I should get a job at Miami New Times.
You really should do an article on how Hispanics in Miami-Dade County has made it so that nonSpanish speaking Americans and legal U.S. residents are unable to find gainful employment within the city limits. You should do an article on how inheretly racist Hispanic Americans in Miami-Dade County are and how they use and dispose of Americans and legal residents who speak only English. That is a story that would earn you a pulitzer. Tell the truth about what Miami Dade County is really like if you are not Hispanic.
So if you are living in Miami and you can't get a job because you don't speak Spanish, then why don't you just learn Spanish? It's not a very hard language to learn. I'm sure you could learn it if you tried.
We shouldn't have to learn spaninsh to get a job because Miami is not in South America. It's in the United States of America and we speak ENGLISH here. A hundred years ago my ancesors immegrated here and they learned English and so should all the people who immegrate today. We build a strong society and a strong country by having a common language. Things fall apart when people cannot communicate effectively. "Trapped In Miami" I really feel for you. My family escaped Kendall 25 years ago and it's only gotten worse since then.
We shouldn't have to. You live in an English speaking country. In fact this country was built on the English language and you should learn English and speak it. And if you don't like that then Leave.
Calm down! I have a lot of non-Hispanic friends that enjoy Miami very much....stop being such a sourpuss. 95% of Hispanics are very outgoing people, just make an effort to get to know them and stop being a racist!
Fantastic article. I was cracking up at the "biutiful" part- my girlfriend came over here when she was a kid and still pronounces it "be-a-YU-ti-ful." What was the guy's number again?
Excellent article. Goes to show how many scammers there are in South Florida. Hence the scammer capital of the world. Besides Nigeria. All we need now is to have people saying they have large sums of money overseas and need your help to take it out for a price.
Good luck with finding a woman on echatepaca.com. lol...
Excellent article! Depicts life in south florida so well..we are full of "inventors" all the time..congrats on this article. Posted to Facebook
Why do you mock a 32 year established Hialeah company that promises/offers to teach English in six months when the University of Miami promises to do a thorough course in teaching/learning Espanol in only seven days?
Maybe UM offers the formal, proper Spanish, which very few in South Florida speak or understand.
It is similar to someone from 'Ox-Bridge' trying to understand someone from the backwoods of Mississippi.
Otherwise, your article was fairly amusing.