One of our bloggers got swine flu, now there's swine flu at Vogue...sigh. It's the Kevin Bacon of viruses, get over it. But how's Mexico doing in New York? Our intern Siggy dropped by his local Mexican food joint and chatted with Dave, the son of the owner, about what the hell is going on down in his mother country. Dave talks about all the tacos and burritos on the menu as if they were beautiful ladies. He’s in love with the chicken chipotle burrito, but like most people he’s a cheating bastard and Siggy made him admit it.
Vice: So things are not looking too bright in Mexico these days.
Dave: No man. You got a lot of static on the borders with the drug cartels; you got a lot of people with their interest in the borders getting shut for import and exports.
Not to mention that earthquake and the swine flu. It’s a pretty bad run.
Yup, and not too long ago you had floods from hurricanes and tropical storms all up and down certain coasts. They just finished rebuilding all those tourism cities. They were all destroyed no more than four years ago, you know. We’re talking about flooded, people losing their houses, people dying. It’s not good man. God is punishing Mexico right now.
Do you talk to your family there?
Yeah. I got a couple of family members there. But they are not on the coastline. Where they are from there’s nothing that can be taken away from them, because it’s already poor. So it’s not like a place on the coastline that’s going to be affected by a tropical storm and destroy their whole tourism business, because they don’t have a business to begin with.
I saw this movie called Sin Nombre last night. Have you seen that?
It’s about Mexican gangs and Mexicans heading north into America on trains in pursuit of a better life.
Yeah, man. How do you thing they all got here? Straight up. However: swimming, digging holes, sneaking in the back of trucks.
How did your family get here?
My parents don’t really talk about it. It’s not something people are proud of, not something you can promote, but I can imagine. I can tell you this: three or four years ago I had a problem with a customer and he said, “I know your father is a wetback, but are you?” I’m an adult so I couldn’t act like a little kid and go to jail, but I was ready to beat this nigga down. My father stopped me. I was all angry and hyped and ready to do something and talking loud and my body language was like “What?” I was ready to start snuffing something.
Yeah, but my father pulled me aside and said, “You think that’s racism, you think you know racism? That shit isn’t racism, shut the fuck up and go back to work. Your time is your money. That guy is stupid. He’s ignorant.” Even now, people who escape or sneak into the country won’t feel it as much as the first Mexicans who got here, because there’s places they can go and Mexicans with businesses. But we’re talking about in the 70s in New York—completely different. There was a huge Latin community here when I was growing up and none of them were Mexican so you can only imagine the fights and the racism. Not only from guys, but also from the girls you know. I never dated a Mexican girl growing up here, not one. I’m 27 and I just recently broke up with a Mexican girl. My first one. Just recently. Before that I had never been with one. Never. Believe it.
What are you, a racist?
Nah, man, I’m just saying they weren’t around here. They weren’t. Swear to God, same thing for my girl cousins. None of their boyfriends were Mexicans, they were all Puerto Rican, Dominican, black, or whatever. So, it was pretty tough growing up here being Mexican. Niggas think I’m supposed to act like Speedy Gonzales in the cartoon going “Ayayayayayaya!” but they don’t know what I’m going to do…. I also had it tough with the real Mexicans, because they didn’t like me either.
Because you wanted to fit in?
Because I was losing my culture. I was American or whatever. Up until recently when I really started to get into Mexican culture, I was running around talking like a Puerto Rican. All my girls were Puerto Rican. My Spanish was like Caribbean, so I had to deal with a lot of shit from a lot of Mexicans. Even from my own family. That’s just my story. I think it’s different from a lot of people. But in the Lower East Side you know, everybody knows me, “Yo that’s Mex, M-E-X, Mex, Mex, Mex, what’s up Mex, Safe Sex Mex, what’s good, nigga?" I could do all that shit, because I was doing graffiti, I was playing basketball, every now and then I was getting into fights, I was doing rollerblading competitions. I was also going to the Village and fucking with the white people. I was everywhere.
Safe Sex Mex?
That’s what they used to call me. That’s why I’m the only one with no kids and they all got fucking kids. All the guys my age got like three kids and they’re all fat like that. People grow up fast here man. I was fucking when I was 11. I didn’t know what I was doing, but I was doing it. Shit, cousins fucking cousins. It’s crazy. But it was beautiful too, because like I said I was different. People don’t know what to expect of me. I walk into room, I’m not saying I’m fucking tough and all that shit, but when I walk into a room I have respect. They know I can do something. They’ll be like “I can fuck this nigga up,” but they know it’s not going to be easy. They don’t want to get punched in their face and they’re going to the get punched in their face. They might fuck me up, but something is getting cut and someone is getting bruised up.
I’m glad that’s all the in past. I’ve been thinking about ordering the pork burrito lately, but the whole swine flu deal has made me hesitate. Are you selling less pork burritos now?
Nooo. Motherfuckers love their pork. You know I don’t eat no pork. No pork on my fork. No swine on my mind. I don’t do it. I tell them everyday, don’t eat the pork.
Because I just feel that way.
So do they eat the pork?
I don’t see them do it. Ha ha ha.
I’m not having the pork now.
That’s what I’m trying to tell you man. I told them this years ago. I tell everybody, all my ex-girlfriends. I tell my boys. Just leave that shit alone.
Have you been cheating on the chicken chipotle burrito lately?
No. I just ate it the other day. Oh wait I actually had the chilaquiles. I love the chilaquiles.
I thought you would never cheat on your baby.
No, no, no. I ate it on Friday. We went to see a Nas concert. I lost my voice almost, screaming.
You know all the rhymes?
From the first album I know everything. That’s were my head was at back then. Not Jay-Z, Nas. I drink Pepsi. I’m a Mets fan.
I met you outside the store earlier and you were talking about tortas. What’s up with that specials menu?
I was thinking about Cinco de Mayo and the number five and what it represents. Cinco dé Mayo actually is about the liberation for the people of Puebla, the state of Puebla, where my family is from. They had enough with the French occupation in the state of Puebla, because these motherfuckers would go and rape the women and the girls and basically impregnate them. They dropped their seeds down there in the 1800s. But these motherfuckers had enough, so they went, Fuck this. They fought back with rocks and sticks and shit so the French bounced with their muskets and all that. That is very important to me. So I figured in light of the recession and liberation and spending a lot of money on a $6 or $7 torta, I just want to make all of them $5 and say “Fuck Subway.”
Fuck Subway. Subway is who? $5 Footlong, get the fuck out of here. $5 tortas nigga. Everything about Subway is whack – they are trying to charge you $5 for that fake-ass sandwich. Fuck that. Get a $5 torta.