What's with the tiny hats? 

Ask a Mexican

Dear Mexican: First, some background. I am a U.S.-born Mexican. Actually, until the time I was 7 years old, I lived in Mexico. I'm now 24. I recently went to a Mexican night club to get my huapango on. I wore black lagarto boots, dark Wrangler jeans, a black shirt, a beige sport coat and topped it off with a beige Stetson tejana. Judging by the looks from the women young and not-so-young I could tell the classic cowboy look was working for me. I had a good time dancing to the classic norteñas and cumbias that never go out of style.

But to my question: What the hell is up with other guys and their jacked-up version of vaquero style? Tiny hats, half-sized ties, skintight Capri-looking jeans, and boots that are probably three sizes too big for their feet and curl out and up like Aladdin shoes? Not to mention the "Coach" patterns or the chess look or brightly colored stars?! What the hell, man! They show up with Nike, Polo, Adidas and a variety of other logos on their already ridiculous hats. Oh, I forgot to mention the lights on their hats, too. Half the fun is laughing at these clowns. Mr. Mexican: por favor explain, and I would like this chansa to send a big ¡Culeros! out to these fools.

— El Real Cowboy de Dallas

Dear Paisa: Good for you for sticking to the old-school ranchero look — too bad your generation doesn't care to look like a square. You mentioned a couple of fashion trends—the bent-out-of-shape tejanas come from the pasito duranguense movement from last decade; the curlicue cowboy boots get the name botas picudas and originated in San Luís Potosí; and the ridiculous use of high-end brands is all Narco Polo style, the name given to the ostentatious sartorial standards of the children of narcos. Working-class young men have always cared deeply about how they appear and look for inspiration from men wealthier than them, from the guys who followed Beau Brummell to Saturday Night Fever, so it's no surprise your peers se visten the way they do. I personally don't like that type of dress, especially when pendejos clash disparate forms into one grande payaso-fest — but folks talking shit on how other people dress is as old as one caveman telling another caveman that his mammoth pelt vale verga.

Dear Mexican: I operate a business in Houston that serves every ethnic group on the planet. After we serve Mexican families, our place is covered with chewed gum. It's in the carpet, on the furniture, all over the front walk and porch, stuck to the walls and under the tables and chairs, in the fish tank, in the urinals and sinks. Nothing is off limits. I have never seen anything like it. It happens some with families from South and Central America, but not nearly to the degree as with Mexicans. It doesn't seem to matter if they are illegally in our country, or if their family has been here for generations. It's become necessary to charge Mexicans additional cleaning fees for gum removal. Why is this? Any information you can share will be greatly appreciated.

— Concerned Business Owner

Dear Gabacho: Charging an ethnicity extra is discriminatory and opens you up to a massive class-action suit. Besides, our proclivity to leave gum wherever we go is the same reason we do that with boogers: something to remember us by. Haven't you heard we're romantics?

Ask the Mexican at themexican@askamexican.net. Be his fan on Facebook. Follow him on Twitter @gustavoarellano or follow him on Instagram @gustavo_arellano! If you're puzzled by some of the Mexican's lingo, head to the ¡Ask a Mexican! Glossary at bit.ly/1judthF. We've also found culturally astute definitions in the Urban Dictionary, urbandictionary.com.

  • "Too bad your generation doesn't care to look like a square."

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