Mexico City should be one of the Seven Wonders of the World; it’s like opening up a monstrous treasure chest and seeing what weird stuff you can pull out. Of the interesting people I met, Josias was one of the most endearing: something about him cracks me up beyond belief. He’s chock-full of stories of delinquency in his college days and self-deprecating humor and was also incapable of taking my interview questions seriously. No matter, it had me in stitches anyways.
What’re you up to with your life?
I do illustration and graphic design, but you don’t have to mention graphic design. Because it’s not as cool as illustration. There are probably six million graphic designers, but not that many illustrators.
Being an illustrator, besides making me look cool, I really like doing it. On a typical day I wake up -I try not to wake up afternoon- then I force myself to get coffee. I usually spend my first couple hours reading and going through the news and shit like that. Then I start doing whatever work I have pending.
What’s your life philosophy?
Fear and guilt. Is that a philosophy? That’s not a philosophy, those are just emotions that I feel that guide me. Oh, shame, also shame. So there are three: fear, guilt and shame.
On Mexico City
I like to call it The City of the Million Smells, 750,000 of which are variations of shit. I also call it The City Where Everyone Makes Out on the Train.
This one time I was walking around in Mexico City, and I saw this crazy lady holding her dog by its hand. The dog was walking on two legs, on its hind legs, and it was fully dressed. You know, like a two pieced thing, wearing shorts and a T-shirt.
Since I only saw it for three seconds, my mind couldn’t register it right away. Eventually, I was like, ‘Wait there’s something really wrong about this’. My mind exploded when I realized she was hurrying the dog. Like, “Come on, come on, hurry up we’re going to be late!”. She was talking to the dog. The look on the face of this dog was so fucking distressed, you know? This pathetic dog did not have a great life. It’s probably dead already.
In México, there’s no difference between the words “hope” and “expect”. It’s just “espero”. I don’t know if that gives you a sense of who we are, but I’m gonna leave you with that.
Also, the statements from banks are a lot faster here. I think it’s a kick in the balls that in the United States you spend money and it appears on your statement after a week or something. Which is dumb, because obviously, they can do it immediately. In Mexico, if I buy something, I immediately receive an email telling me I purchased something with my card. I’m like, come on, don’t tell me that Wells Fargo doesn’t have the resources to do it because if Banorte can do it, fucking Wells Fargo can do it.
What’s your greatest weakness?
I’m an asshole sometimes. I forget everyone’s birthdays, I probably know like 3 birthdays. I wish I was a better uncle with my niece. A better son. A better brother, and a better friend. A better everything, basically.
What’s an amazing life experience you’ve had?
When I was little, both of my parents worked, so when I got home from school I was by myself. My mom would make lunch before leaving for work and leave it there for me to eat when I got home from school.
But one time I didn’t like what she made, so I went around the house looking for something to eat, you know, stuff that’s super easy. Candies, chips, stuff that kids like. And I found this can of preserved pineapple, it said. I was like “Oh shit this is good, I’m gonna eat it”.
I opened it, and it turned out it was chiles: jalapeños. And I was so fucking mind-fucked that I couldn’t believe it. To this day there are people that don’t believe this story.
Tell me a story from El Paso
I took this drawing class when I was still a graphic design major. It was a 3 hour class, and we had a 15-minute break, so whenever we had that break I would go to the bar that we had at the University… My roommate at the time was taking a graphic design class at the same time, and we would go and chug four beers in 15 minutes and then go back to class.
So, I went back to class and I was slightly inebriated. I was drawing, and there was a live model that was posing… The teacher would always compliment me, not always, but like, frequently. But this time she came and she told me “Do this differently. You are doing it wrong”. I was like “OK”, but I didn’t do it.
She came back later and I hadn’t changed it, so she got so fucking pissed, she started telling me, “What is wrong with you, I am telling you to do something and you’re not doing it” and I was like “I’m sorry I just forgot about it”. Then she told me “I can smell beer on your breath, have you been drinking?” and then I was “shit, like, yeah, I just chugged a few beers”. She said, “How can I talk to you if you’re not even sober!? Go back to your place”. She was super pissed and I was super embarrassed.
She was kind of bipolar, so at the end of the class she came back to me and said “you know, your drawing is really cool actually, I liked it a lot. Did you guys have a party? Because you’re not the only one with beer on their breath”. I was like “No, but cool to know there are other people drinking besides me.”