Hispanic families have raised their children the same way for several generations. Even Hispanics from different countries around the world are raised with the same idiosyncrasies and often with a sick sense of humor. Warning: some of the following points may sound out of the ordinary to anyone who is not Latino. Below are 15 signs you are Hispanic!
*English translations at bottom.
1. Strange New Years traditions.
You definitely eat 12 uvas* on New Years for good luck and happiness throughout the 12 months of the year. Oh and don’t forget the yellow underwear and lentejas* for prosperity, and running with a maleta* for numerous safe travels. If you don’t do these things, I promise your life will fall apart that next year.
2. When you were little, if you behaved badly in public, your mom would take you to the bathroom.
God forbid you even seem like you’re going to misbehave in public. Hispanic moms DO NOT play. No child wants to hear the words “vamos al baño”* come out of their mom’s mouth.
3. A chancleta can be a weapon.
Hispanic moms like to take action when you’re in trouble, it’s much more than just yelling. Also, if you get smacked with a chancleta*, DO NOT cry BUT still show remorse. It’s confusing but abide by this or get smacked again.
4. Noche Buena is Christmas.
For some reason, Noche Buena* is more important and more fun than Christmas Day for Hispanics. On Noche Buena we feast: we break out the arroz con frijoles* and la caja china!* It’s a pachanga.* This is also the time where everyone in the family will ask “¿y el novio?”*
5. You have to tell everyone 6 p.m. if you want them to arrive by 8.
This is NOT a joke. Hispanics have not registered the concept of being on time.
6. Vicks VapoRub is the best thing since sliced bread.
According to Hispanics, Vicks VapoRub can cure virtually anything. From a cold to diarrhea, “vi vaporu” will do.
7. Spanglish is the only thing spoken in your family.
Spanglish has truly become many people’s primary language, especially for the older generation of Hispanics. It combines the English and Spanish vocabulary and often create new words, such as, printear for printing. FYI, that is not a word in the Spanish language.
8. You are related to EVERYONE.
When you’re Hispanic, everyone is your primo*. You can have a Tio* Bobby and a Tia* Margarita that you’ve only met twice, and somehow, they all changed your diapers and took care of you when you were little.
9. Your mom always wants you to clean.
In a Hispanic household, the floor could be spotless and your mom will find a little speck and tell you that you never cleaned and you’re grounded. Don’t EVER tell your Hispanic mother that you’re bored or relaxing.
10. You must lick the plate clean.
If there is an extremely minuscule piece of food leftover on your plate, it is assumed there is something wrong with you. Also, if your plate isn’t spotless, your grandparents probably won’t let you drink anything because they think it’ll fill you up and you won’t eat.
11. Your life is based off exaggerated superstitions.
According to abuelita*, if you go to sleep with el pelo mojado*, you’ll die. You definitely cannot go in the pool right after you eat because your stomach will paralyze you and you’ll drown.
12. On a scale of 1-10, your regular volume is at an 18.
We Hispanics just naturally have a louder volume when we speak than the average human. This typically comes with pride of being Latino.
13. You will never truly know how many cousins you have.
Going to dinner with a Hispanic family is practically impossible. I don’t know half of my cousins, but I do know that I have hundreds of primos y primas in Cuba, Ecuador and Spain. I probably have them all on Facebook.
14. If you can’t dance…abomination.
As a Latino/a, you are expected to be dancing in the womb. Otherwise, you’re the outcast and are questioned even by other ethnicities.
15. If you go away for college, you’re definitely going to miss the food.
Leaving home for college is rough, depending on where you go, because there usually are no Hispanic restaurants in college towns. Going too many days without croquetas* is a crime.
*Spanish to English Translation*
*Vamos al baño: let’s go to the bathroom
*Chancleta: flip flop
*Noche Buena: Christmas Eve
*Arroz con frijoles: rice and beans
*Caja china: a box with a whole or half a pig that is roasted for parties
*Pelo mojado: wet hair
*Croquetas: fried food roll containing a main ingredient inside