Dimelo: Open Letter to the Maker of a Jenni Rivera Piñata

Dear Robert Martinez,

I come from a generation who grew up thinking that no child's birthday party was complete without at least one drunk Mexican sitting on a roof. We took our piñata entertainment portion of the festivities seriously. That meant blindfolds, spinning each kid three times and facing them the wrong way before sending them off with the baseball bat, while the drunk on the roof laughed hysterically as he mercilessly played with each child by baiting them into complacency before swiftly yanking the piñata out of reach.

We had rules: youngest to oldest, if the kid couldn't lift the bat on their own they got a pass on the Un, dos, tres! spinning thing; three hits and you're out; and if you were stupid enough to run in for candy treasures spilling from the heavens before given the all-clear, it was your own damned fault if you got beaned in the forehead by the still blindfolded older cousin out for piñata blood.

So while I may not have had a clue what my white friends were talking about when they celebrated birthdays with themed parties, I bore witness to the sugar-fueled destruction of Buzz Lightyear, each of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and even the Smurfs. It wasn't pretty; paper mache always ended up everywhere. The adults egged on the kids motivated to beat the random representation of the birthday child's favorite character into an unrecognizable pulp and the cheers could be heard for miles when the bat found the sweet spot and the first crack was made.

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