Dare to ask: Mexicans, beer, Sunday - discuss
By PHILLIP MILANO, The Times-Union
Why do Mexicans at grocery stores or mini-marts seem to always be buying huge
packs of beer on Sunday afternoons?
It's a long tradition related to soccer. On Sundays there's soccer games . .
. and men get together to watch the game and have beer and food.
Many Mexicans work on Saturdays, and Sunday is a family day. Many go to
parks, BBQs and the beach.
Michael, 23, Hispanic, Los Angeles
We are near a small village that is the nursery capital of the South. Many
migrant workers live somewhere between here and there. Sundays are usually their
only day off, and they come to town to eat at a restaurant, buy groceries and
beer and pay their cell phone bills.
Erica, white, Louisiana
If you think it's only a Mexican thing, you should see the Brits, Aussies and
Kiwis I associate with on Sundays.
Adrian, 36, white male, Hong Kong
Mexicans . . . have no one to go home to except for the other people that
live in their trailer/apartment building and they want to get their fiesta on.
Kyle, 15, white, Texas
Mexicans are some of the hardest workers I've ever known. . . . I have always
preferred to get drunk on Saturday. That way I could rest on Sunday and be ready
to work on Monday. I have worked with a ton of Mexican guys, and it has always
amazed me how they can get so drunk on Sunday night and then get up Monday
morning and still pick twice as many peaches as I did.
Ron S., 60, Stockton, Calif.
Alma R. Martinez, a theater professor at Pomona College in California, is
also a Broadway and film actor who lectures about Latino stereotypes. She
addressed some of the stuff tossed out by readers above.
Mexicans work on Saturdays: True for many in lower-income brackets, and not
only that, many work two jobs. "My dad had three jobs at one point: in a garage
in the day, at night grinding liver for [Eli] Lilly, and another job at a body
Mexicans buy big packs of beer on Sundays: Well, Sundays are viewed as a day
of rest, which goes back to Catholic traditions in Mexico. "You go to church,
you do what you do, there are gatherings, weddings, and as far as beer, because
Mexico in the north is very hot, you drink beer and Coca-Cola."
Mexicans work hard: "It's ridiculous to say we are lazy. Mexicans work hard
at everything and are trying to send some of that money back home . . . they are
working hard to support families."
Ron S. gets drunk on Saturdays: We said she addressed some of the stuff.
Mexicans have no one (extended family-wise) to go home to: And that's why
many hold gatherings on Sundays - often at free or inexpensive places like the
beach or park. "We often don't have support from extended family in the U.S. . .
. so what family and friends are here is important."
Phillip Milano, author of I Can't Believe You Asked That! (Perigee),
moderates cross-cultural dialogue at Y? The National Forum on People's
Differences. Visit www.yforum.com to submit questions and answers. Send general
column comments to phillip. firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also hear his
podcasts or watch his