The truth is, the angrier I am with this country and the further I travel, the more Mexican I feel.

Jorge Ibargüengoitia (1928 – 1983). Mexican novelist and playwright.

Some time ago, the Provincia newspaper, based on the city of Morelia (Michoacan, Mexico), published a small list of Mexican traditions, which would surely intrigue any foreigner visiting our country. It is nice to see that we are not boring at all; just like every other culture in the world, we have our own amazingly odd habits. Not everything is smiles and laughter, however; some of these entries are quite disturbing, even for Mexicans such as myself. For example, according to some studies (including this map), Mexico is very racially tolerant, but whenever we talk about having neighbors of certain beliefs, nationalities or sexual orientation, many Mexicans bring their darkest side to the light.

Anyway, translated for your pleasure, enjoy:

Morelia, Michoacan (Jul/10/2014) – Reddit user MADEDITOR05 has done a simple question: “To those who have visited Mexico, What’s the weirdest thing about Mexico, that Mexicans find normal?” The responses were immediate; here are the best 35:

  1. No shop has spare change, EVER.

  2. There is a love-hate relationship with the United States.

  3. They love public displays of love and very, very long intimate embraces.

  4. They have a VERY good personal hygiene.

  5. They have no moderation in the use of hair gel; it appears that the minimum acceptable is half a jar a day.

  6. It is really disturbing that an old man claiming to be a child appears on a family program every Sunday.

  7. I was surprised at the lack of toilet paper and soap in public places, especially schools.

  8. They are highly educated, greet and say goodbye to everything and make me feel like I have no education.

  9. References to homosexuality abound in their language “joto, marica, puto, etc.”

  10. Canteens bring you food while you’re drinking, for free! They have no idea how lucky they are: Mexican food and Mexican beer is a winning combination.

  11. No decent coffee. Chiapas and Veracruz produce world-class coffee and it seems that everyone drinks Nescafe and OXXO coffee.

  12. The snacks; snacks are delicious.

  13. I was apalled by the lack of timeliness by everyone. If you have a meeting at 4:00 expect people to arrive at 4:30 at the earliest.

  14. That thing they serve at the restaurants is NOT catsup. I don’t know what it its, but it is not catsup.

  15. When I went to a public restroom, they asked for money at the entrance; when I paid they handed me some toilet paper. I was confused…

  16. College education is very casual, lots of communication between students and teachers.

  17. There are hot sauce dispensers for popcorn in theaters.

  18. Wal-Mart has a liquor aisle.

  19. Everyone sells something; on the street corners, outside their homes, and even on public transport.

  20. There are Asians in Asian shops and restaurants, but nowhere else.

  21. I didn’t see any non-Mexican child either…

  22. Everything is an excuse to party, and Mexican fiestas involve the entire family.

  23. Do not listen to what the American television says about Mexico. It is NOTHING like they say.

  24. If you have African ancestry, get used to being the center of attention in Mexico.

  25. They put lime on everything.

  26. Mexicans do not care about monopolies.

  27. They do not seem to care about wildfires, as long as these do not threaten people.

  28. They seem to believe that a drop of chili will be enough to destroy any foreigner. So the custom is to warn every one approaching the sauce bottle with “but it is spicy, OK?”

  29. The drug violence is central to everything that happens in Mexico, but it is taboo to talk about it in public.

  30. If you do not understand the multiple meanings of “chingar” and “pedo“, good luck following any conversation.

  31. Mexicans see any Central and South American as inferior. And they can’t stand the Argentines.

  32. They drink impressive amounts of soda.

  33. Racism is not such a big deal in Mexico. What is a problem is classism.

  34. Together they support the economy of the people. Walmart? Never; we go to the tianguis.

  35. Philadelphia Cheese in the maki? Why?!