And The Horse You Rode In On / Y El Caballo En El Que Montaste

La versión español está después de la versión inglés.

FROM THE TIME I learned to read and write I began to doodle words into pictures. I’d think of a word and then draw the letters into positions to form an image. As I grew up, the letters would form into the words themselves. It got to the point where I would see the letters dancing in my head. That’s how ToldemArt started. As I mentioned in an earlier post (click here), during an editorial meeting I doodled the words “FUCK YOU” into what looked like tribal art and the art itself impressed one of our designers. That led me to wonder if I actually had something to build on. The original design remains one of my favorites. I went on from there to create “FUCK ‘EM,” which could also be read as “FUCK ME.”

My Mother The Dowager Duchess was a huge moral supporter of the business. She proudly wore all my jewelry and bragged to friends and acquaintances that I had designed them and what they meant. One of her favorites was the pendant and earrings that said “FUCK ’EM.” However, the Dowager Duchess never used such language. I asked her what she told her friends when they asked about it and she said, “Oh, I just say, ‘Mitchell designed this, too.’

“But I don’t tell them it means anything.”

The image at top was a bumper sticker I created, which reads “FUCK YOU AND THE HORSE YOU RODE IN ON.”

I JUST REALIZED I LIED earlier when I said The Dowager Duchess never used such language. I remember back when I was in high school, I was sitting outside on the balcony while The Duchess and my sister had an enormous argument, which wasn’t uncommon. The Duchess stormed onto the balcony (not noticing I was there), walked up to the railing, and muttered, “Well, fuck you!” THEN she noticed me. She turned beet red. “Well, it felt good!” she snapped.


DESDE EL MOMENTO en que aprendí a leer y escribir, comencé a dibujar palabras en imágenes. Pensaría en una palabra y luego dibujaría las letras en posiciones para formar una imagen. A medida que crecía, las letras se formarían en las palabras mismas. Llegó al punto en que vería las letras bailando en mi cabeza. Así es como comenzó ToldemArt. Como mencioné en una emtrada anterior (haz clic aquí), durante una reunión editorial escribí las palabras “FUCK YOU” en lo que parecía ser arte tribal y el arte mismo impresionó a uno de nuestros diseñadores. Eso me llevó a preguntarme si realmente tenía algo sobre lo que construir. El diseño original sigue siendo uno de mis favoritos. Continué desde allí para crear “FUCK ‘EM” (como JÓDALOS), que también podría leerse como “FUCK ME” (JÓDAME o FOLLAME).

Mi Madre La Duquesa Viuda era un gran partidario moral del negocio. Ella llevaba con orgullo todas mis joyas y presumía a sus amigos y conocidos que yo las había diseñado y lo que significaban. Uno de sus favoritos era el colgante y los pendientes que decían “FUCK ’EM”. Sin embargo, La Duquesa Viuda nunca usó tal lenguaje. Le pregunté qué les dijo a sus amigos cuando se lo preguntaron y ella dijo: “Oh, solo digo, ‘Mitchell también diseñó esto’.

“Pero no les digo que significa nada”.

La imagen en la parte superior era una pegatina de parachoques que creé, que dice “FUCK YOU AND-THE HORSE YOU-RODE IN-ON” (“TE JODAN Y EL CABALLO EN EL QUE MONTASTE”). Es una expresión estadounidense peculiar.

ME ACABO DE DAR CUENTA de que mentí antes cuando dije La Duquesa Viuda nunca usé tal lenguaje. Recuerdo que cuando estaba en la escuela secundaria, estaba sentado afuera en el balcón mientras La Duquesa y mi hermana tenían una pelea enorme, que no era infrecuente. La Duquesa irrumpió en el balcón (sin darse cuenta de que yo estaba allí), se acercó a la barandilla y murmuró: “¡Bueno, jódate!” Entonces, ella me vio. Ella se volvió roja de remolacha. “Bueno, ¡se sintió bien!”, ella espetó.

I say, “Fuck ’em if they can’t take a joke.’
Yo digo: “Jódalos si no pueden tomar una broma”.

Author: Moving with Mitchell

From Brooklyn, New York; to North Massapequa; back to Brooklyn; Brockport, New York; back to Brooklyn... To Boston, Massachusetts, where I met Jerry... To Marina del Rey, California; Washington, DC; New Haven and Guilford, Connecticut; San Diego, San Francisco, Palm Springs, and Santa Barbara, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; Irvine, California; Sevilla, Spain. And Fuengirola, Málaga..

25 thoughts on “And The Horse You Rode In On / Y El Caballo En El Que Montaste”

  1. My favorite I think is fuck you! I particularly enjoy wearing that one out about town.

    1. Kathleen:
      I used to wear it under my shirt and tie at work — and sometimes I’d pull it out!

  2. I look forward to being able to curse more, After retirement my parents bought a motorhome, My father loved it, mom never said much, until a tire blew crossing a bridge in Tennessee. My father said, “she described in words I never knew, she knew, how much she disliked the motorhome.” They sold it to a dealer that afternoon, and drove home the car they were towing.

    1. David,
      That would have been my mother… if my father could have ever even gotten her into a motor home. I curse more than I should. Then again, it feels good

  3. I think my mind is wired differently. I rarely see words in artwork or graffiti. I can stare and maybe a letter or two will appear, but mostly no. My youngest used to do this kind of thing and he’d have to walk me through the words. I just like the prettiness of it. My mother used to cuss a blue streak, indigo blue! My father, the former sailor, hardly ever used foul language. I rarely cuss. It comes out too proper when I speak. I write the words a whole lot better, sometimes, but I’m usually uncomfortable with the usage. I guess it is an art form all of itself. Now my maternal grandmother, a small, quiet gentle woman, would get totally plastered and in a semi-comatose state, would holler mf (I can’t even write that one) at the top of her lungs. I imagine Anne Marie’s voice sounding like her, heh.
    One more thing,(too late to make a long story short) My youngest drew a picture when he was about seven. It was a picture of a kid writing graffiti on a brick wall. The usual stuff like names and such, until blam! He wrote f-word. Not the actual word, but f-word! I laughed so hard I peed and he just looked confused. He wasn’t allowed to use that language when he was young, hence the euphemism.
    Once again, a ramble. I wasn’t connected to a network for two days so some sites weren’t coming up . I suffered from withdrawal pains and now I’m making up for it.
    I did tell you that I love these pieces before, didn’t I?

      1. And Marie,
        Don’t you think these would do well in tourist shops?

    1. Deedles,
      Your son’s F-word is priceless and reminds me to tell another story about the Kid Brother. Thanks for the inspiration. My father swore although rarely the strongest words. My mother’s father swore in Russian and Polish. So I never knew what he was saying.

  4. I don’t really swear but I do mumble under my breath at myself when I can’t complete what I am trying to do. I do screaml in the shower all the time ! Would love one that said “shut up” !
    The bumper sticker is fabulous.

    1. Parsnip,
      I didn’t start swearing until I was 16 except for damn and bum. I made up for last time. Sometimes i can’t believe what comes out of my mouth but I at least do tend to remember where I am when I open my mouth.

      1. I am a parish administrator and can swear to make a sailor blush. With one notable exception I have remembered where I was, so to speak. And of course, it WAS the f-bomb.

      2. Susan:
        I’m usually really good about remembering where I am. It can be really funny around here though, hearing Spaniards speak in English. The words are meaningless to them as are most swear words in a foreign language. I learned some ripes ones in Norwegian and would forget that Norwegian people (and possibly others) could understand me.

  5. I’m impressed by the creative lil boy you were, and the bigger creative man you now are.
    Yeah, f*k em — anyone who doesn’t agree.

    Happy Friday and weekend, Mitchen.

  6. Oh, that bumper sticker, LOL! And yes, I remember those days well, when “fuck” was the worst swear word of all and was never used except “in extremis,” so to speak. It was saved for when you were REALLY mad. I only ever heard my parents use it once (and they swore constantly). Now “fuck” is every second word.

    1. Debra,
      I sometimes “fuck” too much. Don’t know when it started but I probably should refrain at least a bit.

      1. Yeah you should cool it a bit, I’m sure SG is exhausted by now! Somebody had to go there, right?

      1. You can take the boy out of the ‘north end’ but you can’t take the ‘north end’ out of the boy.
        It’s good for your soul at times.
        Don’t get me started! lol

  7. I don’t even remember the exact moments of learning how to read. I never took well with writing until much later on.

    1. Adam,
      I remember lessons but don’t know exactly when I learned. I do remember when I started making pictures from words though. I was 6.

  8. I did not grow up in a household that used ‘bad words’ to this day I find it difficult to disgorge from my mouth lest the gods strike me dead.

    1. Spo:
      I was a slow starter but, for better or worse, I’ve made up for lost time.

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