PHOENIX (Reuters) – Why do Mexicans use their car horns as a doorbell? Why is Mexican television so obsessed with dwarfs and transvestites? Why do they park their cars on the front lawn?
Do Mexican children get tamales at Christmas so that they have something to unwrap? What is it about the word “illegal” that Mexicans don’t understand?
The chances are that you will know the answers to some of these questions if you live in the United States and read the wickedly funny “Ask a Mexican!” column syndicated in more than a score of weekly newspapers across the country.
The brainchild of a Mexican-American reporter, Gustavo Arellano, and his editor at the OC Weekly in Orange County, southern California, the column started out as a prank in 2004.
Since then it has become a sleeper hit read by more than a million people from California to New York each week. It has also spun off live radio appearances for Arellano, and is to be published as a book in May by Scribner.