I don’t get Majo. Not entirely. There are things I get, like why she lied to Andres about being out shopping and the car acting up. And I get why she turned everything around on him and told the half-truth about her parents maybe splitting up. But what I don’t get is why after going to all that trouble–two buses and a metro and really long walk in the dark–she decided not to go to the concert after all.
No que Jorge was going over to Margarita’s? He shows up at Angie’s instead, with good and bad news. They can start school this late, but the waiting list is really long. She figures Margarita got jealous when she stopped him to ask earlier, but he thinks that’s “normal” because Angie’s pretty and smart, etc. Chivis comes downstairs and the kids pass the news on to her, but…uy, she does not want to have to talk to Manuel.
Confusion and potential dislike aside, I’m glad Majo got a taxi home. It’s barely after ten, but Chivis was worried since they don’t know the neighborhood yet. Angie saw the taxi pull up, so she rats out Majo for lying that Andres brought her home. Majo turns on her–ok, fine, she’s too embarrassed to let Andres see where she lives now, she lied, she’s not perfect like “Ángeles!” Trini admits to giving Majo the money for the taxi.
The next morning
Jorge accidentally rips a hook off the wall and it makes a contrived hole that goes all the way through to the girls’ room in the other house. Not cool, man. He even widens the hole with a highlighter and watches Angie unpacking, ripping up a picture of her dad, and crying. And then Pedrito comes in…. Jorge makes it sound like no big deal, a hook just came out of the wall. Pedro came to tell him Margarita is waiting downstairs and Jorge shoves Pedro back out of the room to try and take one more look. Angie’s gone.
Margarita came over to whine at him for talking to Angie about how to get into their school. She doesn’t want them there because she “knows” Jorge, blah, blah, blah. Jorge doesn’t feel like listening to this, so if she’s not going to cut it out, she might as well leave. Oh, but if she’s leaving she’s never coming back. Seriously, Marge? This is the hill you want to die on? And the whining about how he likes the new neighbor. *sigh* Whining is never attractive. Jorge thinks it’s silly that she keeps saying Angie is stupid, and yet she’s worried he’ll like Angie better? Sadly, I don’t feel like all his reassurances that Margarita is his one-and-only are entirely genuine.
Chivis is hauling empty moving boxes and trash out to the street and she does NOT need any help, as she informs Manuel. The problem is, there’s no trash pickup today. Chivis doesn’t listen. They both reach for the same box of trash and there’s clutching! Of arms! How very risqué. The somewhat goofy grins make up for it.
And just like that, all the awkwardness is over…or rather it shifts from awkward hating each other to googly eyes and giggles. They agree to start over. Manuel teases Chivis about her name and she explains it’s a totally non-fresa nickname for Silvia or Silvana and it’s what her dad used to call her…also because he said she had eyes like a cat and Chivis (according to him) was a cat name. Manuel agrees about the eyes.
She gets around to asking about getting the girls into his kids’ school and he has no problem with it. “Being the president of the parent association has got to be good for something, especially after I put up with those long meetings!”
Chivis is glad she has one less thing to worry about. Angie cheers her on, saying they can totes handle things on their own. Now Chivis just needs to get a job. Angie…Angie, mind you…suggests they start by writing Chivis’ resume…with perhaps a little extra patting. *gasp* And here I thought she was the angelic one! She reminds Chivis she speaks English, Spanish and some French AND she’s got a good eye for decorating. If they say she took a class somewhere outside the country, who would know?!
In case you didn’t get the memo, Stella’s shirt says “SEXY”. *eye roll* She’s gone shopping for her outfit for the big dinner tonight and she’s already fantasizing about how great she’ll look as a bride. Poncho can’t take it and walks off. Then Domingo lets slip that Ponco is in love…he runs off, too, so he can avoid telling her who with.
I’m not imagining things–the Virgen in the gazebo outside the fish market looks annoyed. And no wonder, with Poncho asking her not to let Manuel and Stella get together, and Domingo asking her not to listen to Poncho, and the two of them arguing, and Poncho threatening to tell everyone Domingo shaves his eyebrows and wears butt-lifting underwear, and Domingo saying Poncho can’t do that because he wouldn’t want anyone to know they know each other that well, and Domingo asking if the Virgen could perhaps send him someone if she’s not too busy….
I keep hearing the word “palanca” come up in relation to Manuel helping Angie and Lupita get into school. It means leverage or influence. Chivis is into gardening and she’s working out back when Manuel calls to tell her they’ve got a meeting scheduled at 4:30 about the girls starting school. So, see, she has palancas (in the form of Manuel). He offers to pick her up since they know her track record for driving distracted. When Stella comes looking for him, he describes this as “I have a meeting at Jorge’s school.” without bringing up his neighbor at all.
I admire the casual ease with which Chivis wears her navy pinstripe pantsuit. She’s put together without looking snooty. Trini laughs when she hears Manuel is picking her up–no wonder she looks so nice. Chivis rolls her eyes at Trini when Trini moans about the school name “K to 12” sounding like a furniture store and goes outside to meet Manuel.
Manuel is just arriving and teases her about needing to move a couple of styro boxes out of the front seat–he got new ones because soooomeone wrecked his truck. But at least she’s going to pay him back. Chivis begs him to cut it out. It’s embarrassing to owe him money. And besides, the fish are dead, “Get over it.”
¡Y qué palanca! Manuel talks Chivis’ daughters up to the school principal like he’s known them forever. I mean, sure, they’re great, but he just met them! After the meeting she thanks him for everything he’s done. She feels bad she keeps doing nothing but causing problems and here he’s doing her favors! Manuel acts like it’s no big deal to have vouched for her daughters. Chivis raised them, so they must be good kids…”but I wouldn’t vouch for their driving!”
Back in the van, Silvana notices the locket hanging from the rearview mirror. It’s a locket with a picture of Manuel’s wife. He explains she died eight years ago. He says death is terrible. You can get over everything else.
Trini interrupts Lupita and Pedrito talking over the fence about school. She gives Lupita a little lecture on how people need to stick to their own. I’m not repeating her exact words, because that was some pretty bigoted shit.
Lucha can’t find her wallet. She’s sure she had it this morning on the bus, but it’s gone now. Andres offers to give her a ride home. When she refuses, he picks up her stuff so she has to follow him to his car. When they get to the duplex, Lucha moans about not wanting to go inside and get ready for this stupid dinner with her dad’s girlfriend. She explains that her mother died eight years ago, of cancer. Andres wonders if maybe that’s the reason she decided to study medicine.
Lupita sees the car from Chivis’ balcony and runs to grab Majo, thinking Andres came by to surprise her. Oh, she’s surprised all right, seeing someone’s arm resting in the passenger side window. She seethes about Lucha being a slut and then has to tell Lupita NOT to tell anyone she said that, especially not their mom!
The infamous dinner
Stella comes downstairs wearing a dress that…well…let’s just say all she needs to do is add a little white apron and she’d look like she’s serving canapes at a fancy party. Domingo thinks she looks like she’s in mourning. Poncho thinks she looks great, obvs. But they both agree her look is a little costumey. Well, she wanted to make a good (if non-authentic) impression. She makes them both hug her for luck before she goes.
Manuel and Chivis have obviously been sitting out in front of the duplex for a while. She’s told him the whole story about how she ended up being his neighbor. He jokes about the accident again, how she was so angry he was picturing himself as a murder victim on the front page of the paper. Chivis…you know how sometimes when you’re upset and crying and then someone’s nice to you it makes you cry harder?…I mean, he’s explaining how to fry an egg when she says she doesn’t know how, and he’s literally offering his shoulder so she can get it all out now and not cry in front of the girls.
And then Stella has to mess it all up by poking her annoying face in the window and asking what’s going on. She tries to block Silvana from getting out of the van and she keeps screaming at her about keeping her hands off Manuel. Chivis shows where Angie gets her cool from–she says she’s not going to have a shouting match in the street because she thinks it’s very rude. They weren’t doing anything wrong and Stella can relax, she’s happily married.
Inside, Chivis announces to Angie and Lupita that they’ve got a new school to go to tomorrow! Uniforms…right…well, they can wear the old ones until Chivis can get new ones. Lupita doesn’t understand why, if they’ll be going back to their old school when her dad gets back.
Chivis says he sent an email and he said he’d be gone a really long time because…. Trini smoothly jumps in and says he has a LOT of work to do. She goes upstairs with Lupita while Silvana tells Angie all she’s got to do now is get a job. Angie hugs her, calling her Supermom, and picks her up by her waist, despite being a head shorter!
Poncho keeps moping over Stella. He won’t listen when Domingo shuts off the movie he’s watching and gives Poncho the bad news–he read Stella’s cards, and Poncho wasn’t in them. (Pues, the cards never lie, right?) Poncho grabs his jacket and runs out of the house without telling Domingo where he’s going.
Manuel kinda sorta explains about helping Silvana get the kids in to school and her being upset because the family is broke and anyway doesn’t Stella want to get on with this very important night? Yeah, distraction does the trick where excuses didn’t and she takes his hand to go in to dinner.