Ask a Mexican

Why are Mexican porta-potties so graphic?

Dear Mexican: Why do Mexicans at construction sites always draw a dick and vagina on the interiors of porta-potties? They sure are not as poetic as they are artistic. Then you've got the white boy reply, "Here I sit, flexing a..." You should know the rest.

Original Schreck in Houston

Dear Gabacho: Methinks we have a coprophiliac in our midst. How else would you know the ethnicity of toilet taggers? The Mexican doesn't bother with bathroom graffiti because he prefers to read Reconquista for Dummies while cagando, but he is an avid reader of bathroom-stall graffiti academic treatises. Allen Walker Read, in his 1935 publication Classic American Graffiti: Lexical Evidence From Folk Epigraphy in Western North America — A Glossarial Study of the Low Element in the English Vocabulary, categorizes such scatological and sexual vandalism as part of the "well-known human yearning to leave a record of one's presence or one's existence" and notes that it emanates from "neuroses develop[ed] over the mysterious aura that has been thrown around the bodily functions." Walker lists citations of the practice, drawn and written, dating back to the Hellenic era, and it's fitting, since writing while taking a dump is all greco to me.

Dear Mexican: I am curious about your take on English versus Spanish. I am an obviously Mexican-American woman, but sometimes I get angry at people who come up to me and assume I speak Spanish.  Oh, and when they find out that I don't, I get foul faces, rude comments in Spanish (which I can pretty much figure out what they're saying). I'm a third-generation Houstonian and grew up in the suburb of Spring-Klein (not too many of us out there when I was growing up). I believe because I'm an American and I do live in America, I speak English. Don't get me wrong: I am not ashamed of my heritage! I really wish I did speak Spanish fluently, so I will be taking a summer course in español this year. It just gets to me sometimes.

Coconut in the City

Dear Wabette: Don't get mad when people assume you speak Spanish; in this country's psychology, once a wab, always a wab. If it's a Mexican who's giving you grief, they're just insecure pendejos who wished they spoke English or were more Mexican. And the best way to learn Spanish? Los Tigres del Norte.

Dear Mexican: I'm a Mexican from Houston with great admiration for Latinos in the film industry, and I'm looking for my big break. Do you think there is a lack of Hispanic/Latino movie directors, and how can we change this?

Wrapping More Tamales and Less Movies for a Living

Dear Wab: Si, and you can find out how to change Hollywood's brown-out by visiting the National Association of Latino Independent Producers website at

Dear Mexican: I work at an ice cream shop in Houston, so we get all kinds of Mexicans, from border jumpers who need to have their kids order for them to upper-class güeros who moved from Lomas de Chapultepec to be closer to an emporio Armani. A common thread I've noticed is that Mexicans order butter pecan much more than any other group, and I can't figure out why. Please explain the Mexican affection with the nuez.

Gabacho Heladero

Dear White Ice-Cream Man: Because it's bueno. And porque Tapatío nieve has yet to be perfected. Next!

Dear Mexican: What's with quinceañeras and their entire party walking around in full get-up at the mall? Go to the Houston Galleria on a Saturday afternoon, and there's always a young lady with a big, puffy pink dress, crown on her head, high heels and chambelan in tow walking around. Is "showing off" at the mall now part of the quinceañera festivities?

Former Pretty in Rosa

Dear Former Pretty in Pink: "Showing off" is the only reason for quinceañeras. If Mexican parents were smart, they'd use the thousands of dollars spent on the event toward their daughters' college funds — but you didn't hear it from me. Oh, wait — yes, you did!

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Gustavo Arellano
Contact: Gustavo Arellano

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