Now another installment of a section I like to call “Mexican Manners”. One of the many fun, interesting things when it comes to learning about other cultures is studying manners and customs. If you want to impress Mexicans friends/acquaintances, this section will provide some tips for you.
Today’s Tip is: WATCH YOUR BACK.
I think this is a custom observed in most Hispanic cultures, not sure if it’s observed in other cultures, though. I’ve been with people who aren’t Hispanic and don’t follow the “watch your back” rule. They didn’t mean anything by it, it’s just a custom they don’t observe. In Mexican culture though it’s an important rule. Why? Because, it is considered very rude to have your back turned to someone. This is called “dar la espalda” = give someone your back. It’s considered as a sign of ignoring someone, a physical affront…etc. In all fairness, there are times when you must turn away from someone to talk to someone else, and certain situations when due to positioning, having your back face someone can’t be helped. For politeness sake though, it’s best to keep the location of your back in mind and try to position yourself at an angle where you’re not directly turning your back to anyone. Or if you do turn your back, excuse yourself & try and try not to do it for too long.