Why do non-Mexicans consider it a compliment when they tell Mexicans they don't look Mexican? I am 100 percent Mexican—5 foot 7, with black hair, brown eyes, and olive skin—and ever since I left my hometown of El Paso, I've been subject to this backhanded compliment.
No Soy Italiana, Pendejo
Dear I'm Not an Italian Chick, Asshole,
Don't be too upset—anyone who commits that phenotypical faux paux is actually trying to be nice. The veins of nearly all Mexicans pulse with the blood of America's most-loathed foreign enemies, Spaniards and Indians. And ever since the first conquistador bedded an Aztec maiden, gabachos have viewed Mexicans as only slightly more respectable than a taco. Mexicans, along with other groups (Irish, blacks, Jews), are the darker angels of America's psyche, the part of its Puritan subconscious it yearns for but won't acknowledge and thus hates: miscegenation, Catholicism, fiestas. To cope with the trauma of this unrequited lust, the gabacho mind relegates Mexicans to two culturo-sexual stereotypes that vary with the times. When relations between Mexico and the U.S. are good, we're Latin lovers and spicy senoritas; when bad, we're no better than greasers and spicy senoritas. Today, relations between Mexico and the United States are at the lowest point since Taco Bell introduced its Value Meals, so anyone assuming you're anything but a Mexican is merely being polite.
Hey, Mexican Dipshit,
While driving in your ancient, unsafe lowriders, why do you spics almost always come to a stop in the middle of the street, open all four doors so your kids, moms, dads, grandmas, and grandpas all pop out, then walk slowly to opposite curbs while giving hate stares to us gringo drivers trying to get around you? Are you wetbacks just jealous of us gringos because of our beauty and brains?
Not sure what you're talking about, Bull. The automobile follies you refer to sound like a variant of the Chinese Fire Drill, but that prank is more characteristic of gabacho frat boys than Mexicans. Not only that, but no Mexican would ever stop in the middle of the street without turning on his emergency flashers and turning up the radio a couple thousand decibels until Los Horóscopos de Durango sound like Blue Cheer. The only thing ancient about lowriders is their chassis; everything else is top-of-the-line technology like hydraulics, LCD televisions mounted in the trunk, and sound systems that can produce a tsunami. Mad-dogging a gabacho is pointless to Mexicans—what good is a silent stare when a well-timed "¡Pinche gabacho!" communicates the hate so much better? And I can't imagine too many wetbacks being jealous of someone who chose as his pseudonym a fat, shade-wearing, Stetson-sporting pendejo who hated blacks and stubbornly clung to his culture's old, chauvinistic ways—in other words, a Mexican in training.
Got a spicy question? Then ask the Mexican at firstname.lastname@example.org. Include a hilarious pseudonym, por favor, or we'll make one up for you! También, a glossary deciphering some of the Mexican's more popular catchphrases can be found at www.seattleweekly.com.