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Politics and Activism

I'm A Latina, And These 10 Things Will Make You Wish You Were Too

¡Si tú sabes, tú sabes!

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I'm A Latina, And These 10 Things Will Make You Wish You Were Too
Victoria Alvarez

It's plain and simple: I love being Latina. Mostly because being a Hispanic means that life isn't plain and simple—it's loud, it's dramatic, and it's always entertaining.

Curious? Here are 10 things I love about being a Latina that'll make you jealous.

1. Our food is better than yours. Sorry, but it's facts.

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I'm not talking about Chipotle or Tijuana Flats (yum, but also so Americanized). I'm talking about Abuela's food. It doesn't matter if you're Cuban, Puerto Rican, or Mexican, because there is always an Abuela that has mouthwatering, homemade food that will bring Bobby Flay to his knees. Different parts of the Latin community have different types of food, but they're all equally phenomenal. If you had my Abuela's black beans with rice and yuca, you'd get it.

2. Spanish music is SUCH a vibe. 

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There is a reason why artists like Daddy Yankee and Nicky Jam are being played nonstop on English speaking radio stations—it's because their music is BOPPING. It doesn't matter if you have no idea what half the lyrics in "Dura" mean. Hispanic music's catchy beat with vaguely suggestive undertones gets you feeling some type of way. For Hispanics, it's on our everyday playlist. To be honest, we are always feeling some type of way. Check out artists like Romeo Santos, Ozuna, Maluma, and Bad Bunny. Your life will be complete.

3. We dance EVERYWHERE and look GREAT doing it.

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Parties, especially Quinceañeranereas, are filled with bachata, merengue, salsa—the works. We'll meet a new relative, become instant dance partners, and have flawless technique. It's in our blood.

Also, if we hear Suavemente anywhere, and I mean ANYWHERE, we will break out into dance. Children's birthday party? Check. Background music during a movie? Check. Walking through a theme park? Check. Target? Double check. We can't control it.

4. Telenovelas are so extra, but then again, so are we. 

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Telenovelas have a bad rep. Like such a bad rep. The hit TV show "Jane the Virgin" is a satire for the industry as a whole. But, "Jane the Virgin" also embraces this rep by creating a show that is just as extra as Telenovelas, but is more Americanized and emphasizes how amazing the Latin community is.

Telenovelas are known for its overacting and crazy plot lines, but have you ever watched one? They're actually super addicting and they have beautiful people in it like William Levy. So stop hating, put on some subtitles, and check it out.

5. The bigger the hoop, the bigger the Latina.

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Latina fashion. is. everything. Tight clothes, gold chains, big hoops, long nails: GOSPEL. Following trends that don't flatter your curves is not Latina energy. Wearing clothing that is catered to your body shape and heightens your looks is Latina energy. Not saying that every Latina wears this stuff or even should wear this stuff, but I know whenever I do, I am embracing my cultural identity—which is so important.

6. At this point, baseball or soccer is another form of religion.  

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Depending on where your family is from, you grew up worshiping either fútbol or baseball. I'm Cuban, so I grew up watching baseball. My brothers played baseball. I learned how to play baseball. I grew up going to multiple Major League games. It's a thing.

But, I never watched fútbol games. It's almost a phenomenon. As if multiple Spanish speaking countries got together and chose sides at one point. Because whenever I talk to my Colombian or Peruvian friends about it, their religion is always fútbol and never baseball. Cultural diversity for the win, am I right?

7. And, ya know, being bilingual comes in handy. 

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Talking crap in Spanish with my mom at Starbucks is definitely my favorite pastime. You can get away with so many things being bilingual, like getting jobs and extra pay for being a native speaker. A lot of Hispanic kids are fluent, and a lot of others grew up with their parents speaking Spanish but lost the language over time. My Spanish is not perfect, it's essentially Spanglish. But, I understand it perfectly and can get the point across—AKA still can get a job before Ron Burgundy.

8. Our culture is everything to us. 

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Our culture shapes us. It transcends to our everyday lives. Depending on the Hispanic culture, there are different traditions that each Latin community holds dear. For example, I love playing dominoes with my family during every family event. Cultural tradition bonds families together, and I love being a part of a culture that allows me to have that.

9. Our sense of community is flat-out heartwarming. 

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The amount of times I have found the one other Hispanic in the room and clung on to them for dear life is innumerable. I've always had a Hispanic squad growing up because they "got it." They understood my culture, so they understood me. And it's not like we were exclusive, we adopted gringos and they LOVE it. Some of these adopted caucasian friends act more Hispanic than I do, it's great.

10. Family is always first.

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This is by far the best part about being Hispanic. Our culture always puts family and family friends above all else. So regardless of what your psycho, extra, dramatic Hispanic ass does, your family is always there for you.

I want to end this by saying that not all of these 10 things are applicable to every Hispanic, specifically Latinas. But these 10 things are what I think of when I think about how much I love being a Latina. I wanted to stress that the stereotypical loud Latina troupe is just scratching the surface of what it means to be Hispanic. The richness of each culture, the tradition, the family values, the communal love and support of each Latin community is what it means to be a Hispanic. So, are you jealous?

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