Top 10 Worst Holiday Gifts for Mexicans


I see you eyeing that rapping Chihuahua plush at the Walgreens holiday aisle and I know you’re tempted.

Just remember güero—while most appreciate a good gag gift and we Mexicans are renowned for our unique brand of humor (we include a devil figurine in our nativity scene for Christ’s sake), Gorge Lopez you are not.

So before taking a stroll down the very shaky stereotype tightrope look to your holiday bag, picture yourself in a posada on the outskirts of Culiacán and ask yourself this: “Could this get me beheaded?”

If its contents are listed anywhere below, the answer to that query is an emphatic ¡!


Real sticker, sold alongside other gems at

10.  I figure we should start off with the obvious: any type of Border Patrol/Minutemen paraphernalia.  Border Patrol die-cast Crown Vic’s, supremacist doggy T’s (especially if put on the aforementioned rapping Chihuahua), and particularly this coloring book from the US Border Patrol Museum in El Paso, TX are all no no’s, or as we say in Mexico, no no’s.  Honestly, a word find activity for children that includes “cocaine,” “heroin” and “smuggler”? Go fetch, Koroc.


9.  Hasbro’s Operation Game. According to the Center for American Progress, only 68% of Hispanics had health insurance coverage in 2009, compared to 88% of white Americans; and of that select 68%, a third lacked a usual source of healthcare. Operation just rubs it in. Nevermind that my abuelita (a fourth generation curandera) has studied the board game meticulously, and recently told me I was in need of a good egg cleansing because my “breadbasket was in a funk.” One summer as a kid, she diagnosed me with “water in the knee” and make me take daily Vicks VapoRub foot baths—no joke.

Opt for this instead.


8.   A Little Passports explorer kit.  The cruelty of this entry is immeasurable, as many undocumented brothers and sisters will see something with a semiofficial seal and run with it. Seriously, as kids, my anchor baby cousin Julio and I mailed his dad in Michoacán a Cabbage Patch Kids birth certificate and he got busted at the El Paso checkpoint trying to use it as a form of ID. To this day we believe that if he’d Sharpie’d Xavier Roberts on his ass like we suggested, the outcome would have been different.


7.  A taco-shaped wallet. According to the study mentioned on post #9, a total of 37.9% of Hispanics are considered obese, and 14% have been diagnosed with Diabetes vs. 8% of whites.  Shamefully, we already know what we spend our money on the most. Do we have to be reminded with a wallet in the shape of it? In the douche bag-o-meter it’s just as wrong as giving an African-American on your list this.


6.  This puzzle map of the United States I purchased at the Tijuana border crossing. We have a hard time getting our U.S. geography in check, without the help of this dyslexic aid. Look closely, typos like “Cheyene,” “Bolse”  and “Massachusett”  abound in this inaccuracies-ridden foam representation; as well separatist nation dubbed “Philadelfia” which has taken over From New Jersey to New Hampshire. The Mexi-fied “Nueva Orleans” also has a sweet spot in my heart, though top honors go to New York, which apparently is now refered simply as “Detroy.”

 5.  Anything in Party City‘s Cinco de Mayo section. If it were up to the Jersey-based (or is it Philadelfia?) costume, balloon and plastic cutlery emporium, we’d all be a bunch of “fiesta mustache” donning, straw hat wearing, horse-ridin’, hacienda owning outlaws that jam to Ricky Martin’s Cup of Life during our sauced-up dinner parties. 

Case in point, the “Hey Amigo!” costume to the left. Seriously, do I need to explain?


4.  A gift card to Taco John’s.


3.  Mexican action figures. Somehow we never can compete with the G.I. Joe‘s of the world and are either represented as masked wrestlers, round-bellied marauders, or tweaked-out mice. Particularly endearing, is when non-Mexican pop culture figures get a Mexi-makeover. Spin the stereotype wheel! Case in point, this “Bandito [sic] Bashing Mike” Ninja Turtle. Notice the Tequila-fueled rage in the usually composed Michelangelo’s eyes, his jalalpeño pepper-shaped machete, and his little anthropomorphic cactus friend. Arriba!


2.  A Taco Bell Border Sauce™ packet USB flash drive. OK, I gotta admit…this one is pretty darn cool, and I wouldn’t mind receiving it at all. In fact, I was pretty damn jealous of my aunt Norma last week when she ended up with one in a white elephant gift exchange. Before I could ask for it, Norma—being computer illiterate—had super-glued ornament hooks to either side and was rocking them as earrings. “I like that they’re uneven, mijo” she said. “They remind me of my crazy New Wave days.” 


1.  Finally, claiming the top spot in the dishonor roll, is this drug dealer kit conceptualized by Granted, it’s just a mock, but if you plan on jumping on the all Mexicans are drug dealers bandwagon, at least get with the program. The most offensive part of this is the kit is not the idea behind it, but its contents. A pager and a roll of quarters? Get real primo! A true modern-day narco kit should at least include the Transborder Immigrant Tool, a jug of muriatic acid, a DIY gold AK dipping tray and, of course, an Ed Hardy hat. The cult of bejeweled fashions is so strong down south, that its rumored that somewhere in Sinaloa there’s a Christian Audigier statue that overshadows that of La Santa Muerte.  

How many gaudy designers do you know have their own narcocorrido?

Been a victim of racial gift profiling yourself? Sound off.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: