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Ah, nuts!

11 January 2010

First up,  from a piece at Malcom Beith’s new blog on the “Global War on Organized Crime“:

One psychologist estimates that 90 percent of Mexicans are sociopaths. The country has always been violent in certain parts, that’s for sure, but the statistic is probably pushing it. But what happens when people witness this stuff every day? One psychologist estimates that 90 percent of Mexicans are sociopaths. The country has always been violent in certain parts, that’s for sure, but the statistic is probably pushing it. But what happens when people witness this stuff every day?

And, then, from an expat message board (which will remain anonomous to protect the naive):

My wife suffers gluten enteropathy. IS VERY HARD to find gluten free products in Mexico. Almost every processed food contains gluten from can soups to bread. If planning to be here for a while BRING AS MUCH GLUTEN FREE PRODUCTS AS YOU CAN FROM NOB. Occasionally you may find crackers at Sams…

Sociopath, is just an old term for “antisocial personality disorder”:   “characterized by a lack of regard for the moral or legal standards in the local culture”.  Which means, of course, that it’s culturally aberrant behavior… and cannot, by definition, be a majority of any culture. Besides, which, the DSM-IV limits diagnoses of “antisocial personality disorder” to persons over 18, which cuts out almost a third of the Mexican population right there.

That’s quibbling, and I’m not THAT anal… Malcolm’s site is a good one,  but — like a lot of ex-newspaper people — he hasn’t gotten over the built-in “unbiased editor” in his head that would have allowed him to write something like,  “A really stupid psychologist made the idiotic estimate…”

Gluten intolerance is, I’m told, a serious condition, but in a country where  agriculture and cuisine has been gluten-free for the last dozen or so millenia, it’s VERY HARD to find glutenous food unless you go looking for it.  Yeah, there is bread and breadstuffs everywhere, and you can get all kinds of processed crap at the supermarket (and I eat more than my share of it) but it’s  not only NOT VERY HARD to find gluten-free Mexican food, it’s cheaper.

Sure, I can buy  glutenous products (and Mexico makes great pastries and cookies), but one word — tortillas.   The bread I buy is a little over 20 pesos for 386 grams… tortillas are 12 pesos a kilo.  And the tortilleria is closer to my house than the grocery.

Since my idea of cooking involves mostly tossing something in the microwave, I depend more on prepackaged food than some.  Other than a loaf of Bimbo pan integral, the only “glutenous” thing in the kitchen I can find is packaged mole poblano (which includes bread crumbs).

I suppose going to the trouble of actually took the trouble to look this stuff up could mean I have a problem,  but it makes me wonder… what percentage of ex-pats are exhibiting “antisocial” behaviors?

Use of aliases is one sign of an antisocial personality disorder (and the expat message boards would go out of business if everybody had a handle to link back to a real person).  Another is recklessness when it comes to their or others safety (normal tourist activity, and normal everyday behavior — if you count drunk driving and whatnot — for a sizable number of expats).  So is “rationalizing the pain they inflict on others” … like cheating their maid; self-absorption (as in not noticing that Mexican food doesn’t include wheat) and a sense of entitlement.

I suppose without too much trouble I could come up with a 90% figure for serious mental illness among expats … which I would fully expect would have other bloggers claiming was idiotic.


3 Comments leave one →
  1. mexijo permalink
    11 January 2010 5:36 am

    Ok, another round of ex-pat-bashing 🙂

    Rich, where can I find the real Mexico?

  2. 11 January 2010 7:34 am

    I’d only claim you were idiotic for insisting that 10% of expats aren’t sociopathic.

  3. 11 January 2010 1:01 pm

    I’ve lived gluten-free for the past two years and find it MUCH EASIER to do so here in Mexico than back in Canada. Tortillas, tacos, tequila … the list goes on. And for gluten-free versions of things such as cookies and bread, there’s an ample selection of over-priced stuff at places like Palacio de Hierro and City Market.

    As for the gluten-free lifestyle: I highly recommend it.

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