Stuff Mexican People Like – Corridos

Give Mexican People an event, and it’s only a matter of hours before we’ll come up with a corrido to memorialize it. The lamentable demise of Juan Camilo Mouriño, those in the plane with him and those innocents on the ground gave rise to this corrido, which we first learned about at

The Möbius Strip of Immigration

exmex One of the best books of the year is  Jorge Castañeda’s Ex Mex: From Migrants to Immigrants, which analyzes the immigration conundrum better than anything else I’ve seen. I’ve become such a fan of this book that it’s become one that I buy for friends rather than lending it out.

University of North Carolina political science professor Greg Weeks, who blogs in Two Weeks Notice, likes this one, too.

Stuff Mexican People Like – Gelatin Fantasies

The per capita consumption of Jell-O™ in Mexico has to exceed Utah, where it reigns as the official state snack. In Mexico, it’s a basic food group. Entire aisles of the supermarket may be devoted to feeding the national fetish. Mexico has taken flavored gelatin beyond the usual scope of fruit flavors to include sherry, eggnog, vanilla, pecan, chocolate, anise, red currant, tamarind, green apple and mango.

It’s not just for sick people and children. Well-traveled and even the rare Mexicans who actually read books have been known to wax eloquently about gelatinas they have known. There are even magazines devoted entirely to making gelatin desserts. It’s gone far beyond Perfection Salad.

jello Its incarnations range from gelatinas served up in plastic cups by street vendors to layered versions with stuff floating in it. Mexicans don’t stop at making gelatina with water; adding milk to it makes an opaque version all the better to disguise floaters.

Mexico City Gelatin artist Lourdes Reyes Rosas, the high priestess of three-dimensional gelatin art, has trained thousands in the art internationally, bringing the art and science of creating gelatin cakes filled with realistic gelatin flowers to all levels of Mexican society. There’s nothing that will impress a group of friends than an elegantly presented gelatin creation. Reyes Rosas says “besides being a form of emotional therapy, [it] may be a source for an income and profitable business.”

Yes, we consider gelatina just as good as psychotherapy and anti-depressants in this country.