Is it "ese" or "hese"?

How is the Spanish address that is sort of equivalent to “dude” spelled? Where did it come from?

Thanks for your help,

I’m almost positive it’s “ese.” But I have no idea where it came from.

According to one of the Urban Dictionary’s correspondents, “ese” (“S,” in English) stands for sureño, meaning “southerner,” as in Southern California. It’s supposedly used only by Mexicans in that area. Truly exclusive use seems unlikely, but I expect it’s vigorously enforced by some.

Further research indicates that the Sureños are actually gangs controlled by the Mexican Mafia, and that “eses” are identifying themselves as members of such gangs; at least, that’s how it started.

I thought it was jefe, meaning “boss”. Or is that a different word?

Chicano slang is “vato” which is roughly equivalent to “dude.” “Ese vato” means “that dude”.

I’ve also heard that it comes from S.A. Spanish American, which is the old census term for Latinos.

I’m just saying what I’ve heard.

It’s “Hesse”. Steppenwolf was unbelievably popular in Mexico.

“ese” (that one). I have seen it used as a salutation, just as you would say “dude” (or “hey”) to some random dude. I don’t think it is common, though.

“eje” (doesn’t mean anything) or “ejele” are also used that way. Also “epa” or “epale”.

A bit more background could help. Where have you heard this?

I’m not the OP, but I lived in California for seven years, and I heard “ese” (however it’s spelled) all the time; far more than “vato”. As I was still in elementary school and junior high at the time, these were probably not gang members (at least not when I lived in NoCal). Pronounced “essay” and used pretty much every time they saw a friend, in my experience.

ok, like that it is more akin to saying “hey” than anything else. It was a low-class fashionable thing to say in Venezuela a few years ago.

It is common enough here for stand up comics to routinely make fun of it (at 1:14)

Plus South Park worked it into one of their episodes - the boys hired Mexican illegal immigrants to read a particular book for them, and then told them to write their essays. Cue followup where the immigrants discussed the book, and then talked about having written to their “eses” and how they appreciated getting letters.

I believe it is required by law that any Mexican character say it if he is onscreen more than five minutes in a TV show or video game.

Yeah, different word.

Very funny.

Never heard it used it like that before, though. If that is what the OP is asking about, then I got nothing.

None of us actually checked Wikipedia?
Article about Ese

Article about Sureños

Seems plausible enough for me.

It’s definitely an LA or SoCal thing. You only hear it up hear in NorCal when people are deliberately imitating our southern brethren (whom we’d all just soon see sink into the Pacifc, btw :slight_smile: ).