Monday, September 13, 2010


Mexican Frontier

7:30 AM

BP: Stop right there

Donovan: I am Mexican

BP: Of course not, you are Landon Donovan… What are you doing on this side?

Donovan: It's just that, winning in Mexico is easier

BP: What?!

Donovan: No, I'm talking about Gana-gol [lotto ticket] The new way to win, its easier because its only 12 matches

BP: Well it's going to be easier for me, not for you. So come on back to your house, lets go!

I found this commercial to be very interesting ( as well as funny). Donovan is the most well known American soccer player for most Mexican soccer enthusiast. This commercial airs in Mexico ( they are advertising lottery tickets). I watched this commercial during break and everyone I know recognized Donovan. After our discussion on Thursday I remembered how La Profe talked about a crossover that most Latino artists(i.e. Selena) dream off, to the Anglo market. In Mexico soccer is a huge sport, however few ( i.e. El Chicharito, Rafael Marquez, and others) players are seldom recognized in the U.S. or internationally. Just like artists, most soccer players dream of a crossover to the European league or now to the growing MLS league in the U.S. Like in Arjona's blog "Si El Norte Fuera Sur," situations are switched in this commercial as well. Donovan is trying to illegally cross the Mexican border and is stopped by border patrol. He is wearing a "typical" Mexican poncho and sombrero, something which reflects his attempt at assimilating into Mexico. You could say Donovan is also in search of the "Mexican" dream, i.e. going to a place where it is easier to become rich by winning the lottery:) .

1 comment:

  1. I found this post extremely interesting, thoughtfully written, and of course humorous. First of all, when Donovan says "Soy Mexicano" with his almost unnoticeable American accent, yeah very persuasive (We almost don't notice it, just like Sofia Vergara's accent in English). However, I wanted to comment on something that I think we simply take for granted and that is the common representations of "Mexicans." Yes! We all wear ponchos and HUGE sombreros everyday! Oh! And of course, we ALL love fútbol (soccer). That is what makes us Mexicans!!
    I want to trouble that. It is true that there is not such a thing as "the Mexican experience." Mexico is a relatively large country and there is huge variance from location to location, class, family, etc. just like in any other place. I grew up in North Western Mexico, in the state of Sinaloa. To be even more specific, in the city of Mazatlán. Mazatlán is a touristic resort, I guess you can describe it as a semi-urban/urban place and it is really hot! So guess what? Nobody in my family owns a poncho! Lol Also, in Mexico all states have their own soccer team, some have two. Sinaloa’s team is called “Los Dorados de Sinaloa,” heard of them? Probably not. I do not hear about them very much either, soOOooo they are pretty bad. But! Don’t feel too bad for me, because Mazatlán is a baseball town (and yes we are better at it). Our baseball team is called “Los Venados de Mazatlán” (Mazatlán comes from the Nahuatl and it means “Land of dear,” so that’s where that comes from). My grandfather, uncles, and cousins all played baseball and for them watching baseball is like Super Bowl for American: screams, high-fives, frustrations, curse words and more!
    I guess what I am trying to say with all of these examples is that there is no one way of being “Mexican,” and that those representations can be alienating even for some Mexican people because they are so narrow and fixed in time. I have often felt that people expect me to dress a certain way or like certain things. They want me to “perform my ethnicity/nationality for them,” so I fit that box labeled “Mexican.” Soccer has grown on me; I might just have to get me a sombrero and a poncho.....