A couple of weeks ago there was a post titled How to piss off a Belgian, which quickly went viral in the expat community over here. The post was inspired by a series on the Matador Network called, well, “How to piss off…”
I quickly thought, oh my god, oh my god, oh my god, I should totally write one about pissing off Colombians and swiftly began composing this tirade of grivances you are about to read…. But then I thought, how could it be no one had written one of those for Colombians?
And there it was… staring back at me with judgement….because that article was incredibly polite while mine was a rant of epic proportions. I refused to accept that article had any truth. I’m not offended and pissed off if someone would tell me “I don’t dance”. Eventually I was able to calm the f*** down, had a cookie, and resumed my reading of A Game of Thrones. The article certainly has its value and it possesses some truths. But maybe what pisses off yours truly is slightly different. So here goes!
Fun Fact: Every single one of the situations I mention here have happened to me at least once.
1. Ask us if we have cocaine with us
Because our entire lives revolve around this drug. We were probably raised around people snorting this powdery substance in plain sight everywhere; maybe we started using it when we were teens. Especially ask this question to us Colombians abroad, while we visit your wonderful country, because that would also imply we were probably drug mules on the flight over. Pants? Check. T-Shirts? Check. Toiletries? Check? 1 kg of cocaine neatly packed in individual swallowable pieces? Well, of course!
2. Mention our most famous citizen, Pablo Escobar
No idea who these people are….wait, is that Pablo Escobar? Photo: Source 1, Source 2, Source 3, Source4, source 5, Source 6 Really? That’s the biggest name you can think of? Not Shakira who’s sold a bazillion records worldwide (often getting into controversies for her racy videos) and whose hips just cannot lie? Or Juan Valdez whose face appears in all the coffee cups you drink. While you are at it, throw in your vast knowledge of the drug cartels and guerrila/paramilitary groups, why don’t ya? Maybe you are an avid football fan (soccer for you Americans) and still remember that player who got killed for scoring an own goal back in 1994. We’ll be vastly impressed by your knowledge of the sport!
3. Ask us if we live in regular houses with running water, electricity and if people still ride mules
The treatcherous way home And by mules, we mean the animal, of course, not the “muling” we do when we fly to other places. It is common knowledge Colombia is a wasteland overrun by drug lord, police shootings, and explosion…. Sort of like the first 15 minutes of the movie Mr. and Mrs. Smith (including the part where we all dance seductively arounf trash cans on fire while drinking rum). Be amazed and in pure joy for us, for the wonderous time we must be having in your civilized country with paved streets and shopping centers. Ask us if we have shopping centers, too.
4. Tells us your blond-haired, blue-eyed butt would never, ever go to Colombia because you’d surely be kidnapped
Well, Brangelina made it out alive, soooo….. In this hyper-connected world we live in, questioning the safety of any location is an extremely valid concern. If you ask “is Colombia safe to visit?” you won’t inspire the ire I’m exposing in this post at all. To get the desired effect, you really have to state this as matter-of-fact as possible. Do emphasize how something absolutely horrible will happen to you as soon as you step foot on this soil. Because your radiant white skin and/or magical passport is definitely superior to us darker-skinned mortals.
5. And finally, tell me how you think my accent is “funny”
Oh please, do tell me how much my funny foreigner accent amuses you! Pretend like you didn’t understand a word I said (even though you know exactly what I said) because my horrendous pronunciation butchers your beautiful language. And for those of you who also speak Spanish and feel their accent is far superior than my very poor, unsophisticated Spanish dialect from the coast, be sure to mock my every word in the manner you think I sound. That’ll be music to my ears (like a lovely death metal song)
And there you have it. Luckily the world around us seems to be becoming a better place and these “pleasantries” are not as often said as they used to be. As more internationals visit my dear home country they realize what’s on the news is only but a small fraction of our lifestyles. After all, we are talking about a country of, according to current estimates, 47 million inhabitants (not to mention the size of Spain and France combined)…. not all them can be drug dealers!
How about you? What are the things people say to you (related to where you are from) that really piss you off? Leave you comments below!