1. You’re never quite sure where you stand on the whole body size issue, because any conversation around the dinner table invariably has two phases:
A) “Why aren’t you eating? ¿No tienes hambre? Eat, mi vida, you need to eat!”
B) *The kind of withering look as you help yourself to a respectable portion that only means judgment and fear that you might become gordita*
2. All your friends’ newfound excitement over the World Cup is cute and all, but you’ve had to hold yourself back from calling them filthy bandwagoners multiple times. You knew how exciting this was ages ago.
3. Your family’s one priority can be summed up as follows: “¿Tienes novio?” (And whether or not you do, they will ask you when you plan on getting married and having kids. Every time.)
4. You have a knee jerk fear of sandals and/or belts, even today.
5. Whenever anyone asks your heritage, you hold your breath when you think they might confuse different nationalities as “all being the same thing.”
6. Every time you go to Taco Bell, you feel a little bit like a traitor, but, I mean. The Gordita Crunch.
7. Knowing that someone in your family somewhere down the line will think less of a prominent Latino pop culture icon because they’re not from your country of origin.
8. Being able to keep your cousins straight in your head. (So. Many. Marias.)
9. Feeling the need to trek to a certain neighborhood to get your Goya fix, as well as any other “authentic” foods and products, if you no longer live in a place where yours is the dominant culture.
10. Cinco de Mayo as a general thing that happens.
11. Knowing full well that any family celebration will wind up with you going shot-for-shot with your family and their firewater of choice, and needing to brace your body accordingly.
12. (Even — and maybe especially — a 2 year-old’s birthday party.)
13. Whenever someone says “Oh, I loved Y Tu Mamá También!” when you tell them you’re Latino. (Or Señor Frog’s. Or Selena Gomez. Or Chipotle burritos. Or, god forbid, Spanglish.)
14. “Really?! You don’t look ‘hispanic.'”
15. Bracing yourself for the nonstop marathon that is Nochebuena, an extra-long misa, and everything up to and including Reyes Magos. No one else seems to make Christmas feel like so much work.
16. If you ever think about moving away from home, someone will take that to mean you don’t love them anymore and you are disowning the family as a whole.
17. Trying desperately to resist the plot lines of the telenovelas, but getting sucked into your abuela’s historias every single time.
18. Going out to eat and thinking, “My grandma could totally cook this better.”
19. You want to be a vegetarian? Hahahaha, good luck.
20. Catholic guilt as an entity, concept, and general principle by which you live. Even if you’re not Catholic, or haven’t been in a very long time. There is no removing the nagging fear that somewhere, your aunt is praying for your soul with 15 candles and a wooden rosary she had blessed that one time the Pope came to the motherland.
21. But really, this whole lime shortage is really beginning to chafe your entire way of life.