Saturday, April 20, 2013


By Juan Montoya
Every so often the question arises from certain quarters far removed from our area as to the appropriateness of the name of this blog.
El Rrun-Rrun – like most things on the border – is a combination of sounds and nuances, some onomatopoetic, others somewhat vernacular, yet conveying a meaning as to make oneself understood in a finite linguistic neighborhood.
The Academia Real de la Lengua Española (ARLE) defines the word ronronear as:
(Voz onomat.).
1. intr. Dicho del gato:
 Producir una especie de ronquido, en demostración de contento.
That is, to purr, or make a sound like a cat. The word is onomatopoetic and alludes to the sound, which has been used in Spanish novels to describe either the sound of a car quietly purring at the curb, or the sound of people murmuring, or talking.
Other dictionaries describe ronrornear as:
(Verbo intr.) 
Producir el gato una especie de ronquido,demostrando que está a gusto o contento.
Hacer un ruido parecido las máquinas o los motores.

To cut the language lesson short, we chose the name El Rrun-Rrun because on this border (and in most of Latin America) it alludes to what is being heard and said out there; what is on people's tongues. On the border, where people don't often turn to the ARLE for the meaning of words, few understand that simply having a vowel follow the letter "r" indicates that it will be pronounced as "rr."
So, being the uncouth and untutored people we are, we inserted the incorrect "rr" in our name so that those along the north side of the border (los pochos) will know it's pronounced "rrun-rrun," not "runrun," with a soft "r."
Your run-of-the-mill Grammar Nazi will castigate, we're sure. But hey, we can put up with an occasional nitpicker as long as we achieve the primary goal of any language – correctly or incorrectly used – to convey meaning and be understood. In short, to communicate.
Here are a few variations of the term.
When they want to know what's going on, locals often ask: "Que dice el rrun-rrun?
Or, conversely, when someone transmits information to another and wants to let them know that it's what people are saying, it's "Segun dice el rrun-rrun."
It's quaint, it's borderland pocho and it's probably not what the cosmopolitan modern man of letters would use, but hey, it's really not that big of a deal for anyone to waste their time criticizing or denigrating the term every chance they get.
To do so indicates a scarcity of existence or a wasted one, really.
Anyway, "Es lo que dice el Rrun-Rrun." 


Cantiflas said...

juan thank you, for the definition about how our lanaguages interwine here in south texas and many dont understand our pocho language which we kill so softly with our words.

Anonymous said...

Plus Juan, WhoTF even cares what that imbecile living in one of the trailer parks in the outskirts of Austin even thinks about your outstanding blog. I say, FY dordo!!!

Anonymous said...

This blog is the cat's meow.

Anonymous said...


Excellent writing from a migrant kid!

We are the mighty migrants!!

You make us proud!

You tell them....give them the runrun..

Anonymous said...

One may invent words, play with alliteration and use other word games have it considered literate art. I suggest you read "Tres Triste Tigres" for the Spanish example. However, Pocho is none of the above. It is merely a clear indication of the lack of education on the part of the person. It is like saying that the mountain language of West Virginia is linguistically literate and quaint. Pocho is synonymous with laziness and ignorance. I would suggest you take a trip to Mexico City and hang out at El Tepito and you will hear what is an inventive and creative dialect of Spanish. Pocho is not a dialect.

Anonymous said...

Lately, DPM has taken to just writing articles making snarky comments about the other Brownsville bloggers.

His, "I am a better journalist", attitude is wearing thin. Okay, so you are a better journalist, so write something meaningful already.

Hey DPM, what are you trying to accomplish with the denigrating of everybody elses work? Do you need to put other people down to show us how great you are?

Come on, man, show us your skills through your articles. Write something of impact already, leave the snarky comments to high school kids.

Anonymous said...

It is an odd choice of name for someone who likely has been through every page of a dictionary. Rrun RRun? Why not Ffoo Ffoo?

The Whale said...

I just love when you use those big words and talk dirty to us El RRUNRRUN! Make us feel cheap!

El Southmost kid said...

Juan thanks for your innovative and investigative reporting about the truth and things that go on behind our backs in cameron county, at the city, county and schools districts. if not for your el rrun rrun many of us would not know the bare truth and facts beacuse the brown heraldo cant print much of this stuff, les pegan. thanks a million amigo and keep up the Great work. and for you putos that dont like el rrun rrun fuck off to your facebook jotos, c/s

Anonymous said...

My how times have changed. Back in the day, calling somebody a "pocho" was a good way to get hit upside the head...really hard.

A pocho was a Mexican who didn't want anything to do with his heritage. Same as a coconut, i.e. brown on the outside, but white on the inside.

To the black people, that would be Uncle Tom or Oreo.

Anonymous said...

Failure to understand ignorant corrupted language is not being monolingual.

Anonymous said...

(Hey DPM, what are you trying to accomplish with the denigrating of everybody elses work?) He's published some "novels" and he believes that makes him a better blogger than any in Brownsville. But he doesn't only denigrate Brownsville bloggers, he's made it a habit of denigrating everybody in Brownsville and their grandmothers.

All the while living someplace near the Austin area. Because if he'd present himself (without disguise) personally in Brownsville, he'd probably get his ass severely kicked.

Anonymous said...

DPM es pendejo. Is that pocho?