Mataron a mi tio!

I work in a kitchen with a large amount of Hispanics. And towards the end of the day when we’re all worn out some of my coworkers will say things to sort of boost spirits amongst the others. There was one I heard a lot: “Mataron a mi tio!” It is said in a tone where the phrase increases in volume. So it kind of goes like this: mataron a MI TIO! The phrase is quick and short, but gets people to smile and keep on working hard.

After asking around one of the workers there told me that it was a play on catchphrase a famous radio show would say on 103.1 FM.

I couldn’t find out what the original phrase was, but literally translated “mataron a mi tio!” means “they killed my uncle!”. I wish I knew more about the inside joke, but now every time I hear it at work I understand through context that the phrase is said to lift spirits and moral. It’s one of those occupational folklore that is only known by people that work there.