Why Do Mexicans Party On Their Front Lawn?

[¡Ask a Mexican!] And is it safe for gabachos to travel through rural Mexico?

DEAR MEXICAN: I am a butt-white Irish guy, happily and stoked to be married to a beautiful Chicana. Her familia is from a gorgeous rancho deep in the corazón of Zacatecas, and I've been wanting to experience all of the ranchero lifestyle I keep hearing about from my acquired familia mexicanos (and from those songs at all of the truly awesome parties we attend just about every weekend). HOWEVER, our State Department has warned Americans to NOT travel into Mexico because of the violence by the drug cartels. Tales of decapitated bodies strewn across highways throughout Mexico has aired on just about all of the Spanish-speaking noticias I tune in to (so I can practice my español, and drool over the female newscasters—¡que caliente!). Additionally, I've gotten such a mixed response from my compas of Mexican origin that I'm now as confused as my Irish grandpa was during prohibition! Some of the family and my pocho partners have said that all is great and stop being a pinche güero panocha, and just go! However, los otros amigos have told me that I'd be loco to travel into the moreno motherland because my 6-foot-2, blond, blue-eyed ass would stick out more than a pimple on a prom queen as I made my way into the ranch, and I would surely lose my oversized Ted Kennedy-looking head! Ayuda me—I'm so confused! Do I stay, or do I go?

Scared White Boy (With His Cabeza Intact)

DEAR MICK: I recently talked to a pal who just came back from Zacatecas, and you know what he said? He dijo that his hometown is safe now "because los del Chapo killed all the Zetas and now rule everything." OY VEY! While bigger cities such as Tijuana and Mexico City (and even Juarez, to a lesser extent) are generally safe now after the narcoviolence of the Calderón administration, I'd still stay away from the rural regions of Mexico, which are experiencing full-fledged rebellion between warring cartels, corrupt cops, the Mexican military and autodefensas (local vigilante groups) who are saying a la chingada with everyone and defending their ranchos on their own terms. Then again, you're gabacho, and as I've said before, ustedes can walk around Mexico with all the impunity of Winfield Scott because the cartels know better than to mess with one. They know if they do, the Obama administration will stop its eternal waltz with various cartels and rain down the drone desmadre.

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DEAR MEXICAN: Why is it that Mexicans prefer to party, barbecue, dance and drink in their front yards? Friday and Saturday nights, their low-riding buddies machine-pistol them without having to slow down their Honda. Tight-assed pink peeps party, too, but in the safety of the back yard.

Cabana Man

DEAR MEXICAN: Why do Mexicans do everything in the front yard? From cooking on the grill to celebrating birthday parties with inflatable playgrounds like those at Burger King to hanging their wet clothes over the railings on their front porch? A friend of mine told me the back yard was where Mexicans keep all their chickens, roosters and autos up on blocks, but it isn't true. At least not here in Texas. Is this just genetic?

Tony Romo Is Lame, But Jerry Jones Is Lamer

DEAR GABACHOS: The sooner gabachos realize that front yards are just a pathetic remnant of Gilded Age nitwits pretending to live as though they're British lords and start using yardas like Mexicans, the better off this country will be. Since houses in Mexico historically had no lawns or ornamental plants (that's what the fields were for), Mexicans view front yards as virgin land ripe for the taking. We grow fruit trees and sugarcane; we park cars on it. And , we'll happily put a Dora the Explorer bounce house in the front. Why? Because the back yard is already too packed with partying Mexicans.

 
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46 comments
atviflav
atviflav

I know this is an older article, but wanted to throw my two cents in. As Martha Alvarado-Castaneda said in her comment lower down, front yard parties were not the norm within my family either.

It was always backyard parties, or "side" yard parties (if your home was the kind that had a garage towards the back of the house and left a huge drive way all the way from the front to the rear).

You need to keep in mind that "Mexican Parties" can get pretty big. It's a big welcome-fest with friends, family, neighbors all being invited. With them coming along, you will also have their guests friends and family tag along. You may even see a few of those friends and families friends, family and friends make it to the event. Redundant use of words, but necessary. The scope is large when it comes to "Mexican parties".

That said, many Mexicans live in large cities, or just on the outskirts of large cities. Learning this from visiting relatives visiting in such cities, I noticed that a lot of these homes in these areas have little to no backyard. You are lucky to have a 15 x 20 yard (which is the size of a small living room in many homes) but will more than likely find just enough room to squeeze and stack unwanted items in the backyard. You also have to take into account that Mexicans love trees. You will usually find a Lemon tree, one or two Guayaba (guava) trees (because you need both the pink and the white/yellow ones), and possibly and avocado tree.

When you have a ton of junk and trees filling up the back yard. Kind of tough to party.

So... you party in the front yard. That way all who come, can fit. The front yard and street become a dangerous, but useful playground as well. As a Mexican, what can you do to make that playground safer? Buy a home in a cul-de-sac.

Let's face it though. Mexican's aren't always the best people to contact regarding safety. We still live by a "Survival of the fittest" mantra, and if you get hurt... you better hide it, or get your butt whipped for being a pendejo and get a parental hurting for getting hurt.

gica5714
gica5714

We party in the front yard cus our back yards have all the junk we don't want anyone to see !! Wouldn't change a thing !! Love my childhood memories !!

BillxT
BillxT topcommenter

Can't they party where I can't see the fun and be jealous? If I'm not having fun, I sure don't want anyone else to. Actually, if they were neighbors, I'd grab a couple of sixes of Sierra Nevada Porter or Pacifico and go join the gab fest.

Martha Alvarado-Castaneda
Martha Alvarado-Castaneda

Front yard Mexican parties were never the norm growing up on the West side of Chicago. Our families and neighbors preferred to party and grill in the back next to our giant vegetable gardens that took up half our back yards. It was only when I moved to La Villita (also in Chicago) that I began to observe this phenomenon. Needless to say I was appalled, but hey as long as the bouncy castle doesn't block my car it doesn't bother me too much.

clownly1m
clownly1m

Front yard Mexican parties were never the norm growing up on the West side of Chicago. Our families and neighbors preferred to party and grill in the back next to our giant vegetable gardens that took up half our back yards.  It was only when I moved to La Villita (also in Chicago) that I began to observe this phenomenon. Needless to say I was appalled, but hey as long as the bouncy castle doesn't block my car it doesn't bother me too much. 


Debi Teter
Debi Teter

I have lived in Colima state for almost 10 years with no problems. Drive during daylight hours and be smart. As to the other question...cuz it's hot in the house. Sheesh.

Pete Golczewski
Pete Golczewski

Just be smart. Know your surroundings. Check the state dept website for areas less than safe. I went to Guadalajara last year by myself and was totally fine. I wouldn't go to Michoacán right now but that's me. Also, crime happens everywhere. EVERYWHERE! If your time is up, your time is up.

FishWithoutBicycle
FishWithoutBicycle

I wash my car on my front lawn...recycles the water. My neighbor laid down cement on part of his front lawn and has parked his trailer on it. But perhaps no one complains or says it's trashy because we are WASPs?

ExecuteTamayoNow
ExecuteTamayoNow

"Since houses in Mexico historically had no lawns or ornamental plants"  Ain't that the pinche verdad.  Houses in mexico still often have high walls with broken glass set in the top, tiny windows, and heavy doors with a small peep hole.  Can't be too careful when your neighbors are, wait for it, other mexicans.



gustavoworksfortacos
gustavoworksfortacos

its not the drug cartels you should be afraid of.. its the STDs that most women have down there that should scare you 

Ascary Morera
Ascary Morera

Of course they'll be safe I have gabacho friends who went back packing threw Mexico and nothing happened to them. That's because pinche Mexicanos son unos pesos culos al los gabachos. I seen them serving whitie like their salves its sick to think that pinche raza worshipped the whites down there they have no self respect.

Tammy Osuna-Burton
Tammy Osuna-Burton

Hehehe to the backyard comment. We had a very small back porch designed for our dogs and stuff. It was a big yard, but they had the reign like livestock. Lol. We filled up the house with all of us, park the cars on the lawn, party on the cars on the front lawn and grill on the porch. Lol Dawn, I have made it a point to steer clear of Arizon, Texas and Alabama. ;)

DonAlbertoDoyle
DonAlbertoDoyle

I've lived in Queretaro for several years, and always take visitors to Guanajuato, Zacatecas, San Miguel, Morelia, Puebla, etc.  The new Carlos Slim highways are perfect (if a tad expensive), and the middle class has expanded so rapidly that 3/4 of the cars are late model, so you no longer stand out when parking or driving a nice car.  Morelia and Zacatecas are officially on the State Department no-travel list, but 2 things: 1) if you read the fine print, it typically says that the major highways and tourist destinations and cities are just fine, but don't get caught hiking in a marijuana field; 2) these states are occasionally dangerous for diplomatic personnel and DEA agents, not tourists.


That being said, I'd be inclined to rent a Mexican car rather than driving with American plates.  Since I got a resident visa and Mexican plates, I haven't been pulled over once.  When I had American plates, I was pulled over every 8 or 10 weeks, occasionally for a genuine violation, or simply to check my documentation, but a few times for fictitious violations that were merely an extortion of a hundred bucks by underpaid cops.


And lets remember, it's FAR more common for an out-of-stater to be pulled over in Dixie and subject to forced appropriation of cash and possessions by police departments whose Libertarian Asshole governments refuse to raise enough taxes to fund their own public safety.  At least in Mexico, the fine is always the exact amount you have in your wallet, and then you're free to go.

Dawn Ramirez
Dawn Ramirez

I wouldn't travel a whole lotta places in the US with or without a posse, that's for dang tootin' sure.

Dawn Ramirez
Dawn Ramirez

I travelled in Baja for a month and camped and felt totally safe, but I was with a Mexican...

RocketJ
RocketJ topcommenter

No one size fits all answer for travel in Mexico. Research where you want to go before you go. When there ask locals you trust/know for information. Just like most cities in the USA there are always neighborhoods you want to avoid.

Kate  Senatskaya
Kate Senatskaya

Is it safe for white Mexicans to travel in rural Mexico??

Rita Ramirez
Rita Ramirez

I just came back on Tuesday night from a most wonderful and beautiful vacation. Stayed in Cuernavaca and also Juriquilla, Querataro. Went to San Miquel de Allende and also to Mexico City. The only problem I encountered was the horrendous traffic in Mexico City, lol. Otherwise my vacation was very peaceful and exciting!!!!!

Jimmanee Gomez-Spears
Jimmanee Gomez-Spears

I'm a pasty white strawberry blond that just returned from spending two weeks en el rancho de Tabasco, México with my husband and his family. While I can't speak for Zacatecas, I felt safe and wished I would have gotten over myself long before. Not to say I wasn't cautious especially when we went into the city, but really el rancho está bien tranquilo. Take the plunge and do it. I can't wait to go back.

Earl Marty Price
Earl Marty Price

I disagree witht he remark about American plates. I generally drive down to Nayarit from the Bay Area every other year, and have been since 2000. My brother liees outside of Busearias..never had a problem and generally have grandkids with me, and they love the trip...we go in July come back the beginning of August when the Monsoon hits the desert...It always amazes the kids who this barren place becomes so full of green and life so quickly

Ricardo Carlos
Ricardo Carlos

The Mexican police is the ones you gotta watch for. They go after American plates.

Juan C. Rodriguez Vazquez
Juan C. Rodriguez Vazquez

Fuck the zetas, zacatecas is safe state at this time, come to vist this hermoso stado and eat our "caldo de rata" ... Is a great food for u sexual impotencia dear gabacho, ha ha ha

Ricardo Carlos
Ricardo Carlos

Mexico is safer than most neighborhoods in LA County.

Jeff O'Brien
Jeff O'Brien

I wish the State Department would warn all the pinche drug addicts to stop sending money to the cartels. Then tell Obama and his mob to stop supporting them. Then tell the banks to stop laundering their money. Then I wish it would issue a warning to gabachos to stop pointing fingers at the situation they have had a big hand in creating.

Dave_Lieberman
Dave_Lieberman

Speaking as a tall, fair-haired, non-tan gabacho who goes to Mexico and has driven around various bits and pieces of it—exactly what the Mexican said. You're fine in Baja. Come down, party, have tacos, ogle the edecanes (what, you didn't know how to say "booth babe" in Mexican Spanish?). Tijuana's burgeoning. It's a great place.


Guadalajara? Sure! Why not? Huge city. Many fresas for you to check out. Awesome nightlife, especially in Chapultepec.


But you'd have to be a pendejo of the fifteenth dan to go to Michoacán right now. As for Zacatecas, why don't you ask your suegros? Let them ask through the family. Somebody is bound to have just come back from there, or about to be there, or on the phone to there. They're not going to treat you like a china doll just because of your alabaster skin the way Mexicans who don't know you would; they'll tell you the truth about whether there are bloqueos on Hwy. 23 as you leave Jalisco or whether there have been soplones pendientes on any bridges.

gregbpc
gregbpc topcommenter

@FishWithoutBicycle  No, because a trailer doesn't get drunk, throw trash on the ground, crank circus music, or make a bunch of noise.

Dave_Lieberman
Dave_Lieberman

@ExecuteTamayoNow  So how do you explain the walled-off compound building in Ajijic, Jalisco, which is mostly populated by white retired Americans?

gregbpc
gregbpc topcommenter

@DonAlbertoDoyle Racists mexican cops pulling you over, huh?  At least mexicans that get pulled over here (even illegals) don't have to pay bribes to the cops, yet they rally for their "rights".

gustavoworksfortacos
gustavoworksfortacos

yeah, that's cause most of the neighborhoods are... wait for it.. filled with MEXICANS!!!

FishWithoutBicycle
FishWithoutBicycle

@gregbpc @FishWithoutBicycle 

I'd rather hear the "circus music" than some of the crap I hear blaring from my WASP neighbor's house...or the drunken fight my other WASP neighbors were having in the middle of the week. And being loud and throwing trash on the ground is something inconsiderate partiers of all stripes do. Some people are just jerks. Why scapegoat the Mexicans for it?

gregbpc
gregbpc topcommenter

@FishWithoutBicycle @gregbpc  My response was to why nobody complains about a parked trailer.  Sounds like you live by some of obama's fans.  My "boring", WASP neighborhood has none of the stuff you're talking about.  That's what you get with living in a "cultured" neighborhood, i guess.

 
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