New Mexico January 21, 2016
10 Extremely Weird Things Only People From New Mexico Do
New Mexico marches to the beat of its own drum. And that’s okay, we’re playing a catchy tune. Still, one person’s “unique” is another person’s “weird.” Here are 10 of the strangest things that New Mexicans do.
1. We start the Labor Day weekend by setting fire to a 50-foot puppet.
We burn Zozobra as part of an annual fundraiser, hosted by the Kiwanis Club of Santa Fe. When Zozobra, or Old Man Gloom (the original OMG), is engulfed in flames, it signals the end of feelings of doom and misery and the beginning of hope.
2. We tattoo ourselves with the state flag.
Our flag depicts the ancient Zia sun symbol, in the colors of Spain. In fact, we’re so obsessed with the Zia symbol that we built our state capitol in its shape (a circle which has four slightly protruding entrances to represent the sun’s rays).
3. We believe other drivers have ESP!
Why signal? It’s way more fun to leave other motorists guessing.
4. We buy green chile, by the bushel, usually in parking lots.
New Mexico has a fifth season: chile season. During this time, we linger in parking lots like we’re waiting to score. And we are. It’s just that our drug of choice is chile.
5. Actually, we buy’ll anything that’s sold from the back of a vehicle.
Tamales, jelly, firewood. All of these things are better when purchased roadside.
6. Many of us use the word “coke” to refer to all types of soda.
Why yes, Sprite is a coke.
7. We downplay hiking distances.
Ask a New Mexican to recommend a place to walk your dog, and you’re likely to find yourself scaling a mountain.
8. We still have mounted posses.
This is usually a volunteer force, tasked with missions like search and rescue.
9. We do things at our own pace.
When fresh powder falls in the mountains, we’re likely to call in “sick.”
10. Our bodies make more red blood cells—in theory.
A good two thirds of the state sits above 5000 feet in altitude. In order for the human body to acclimatize to these elevations, our lungs expand and our bodies generate more red blood cells. These adaptations disappear following a return to sea level, but it’s why athletes like to train at high altitudes.
What other strange things do people from New Mexico do?