Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas

Quiz: Are They A) Mexican B) American or C) Both?

Reading Time: 4 minutesThe U.S. and Mexico have more in common than you might think. Test your knowledge with our 12-question quiz.
Reading Time: 4 minutes

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Reading Time: 4 minutes

The U.S. and Mexico share a 2,000 mile border, 200 years of history and more personal relationships than anyone can count. But they may be even more interconnected than you think. Take our AQ quiz and see if you can decide whether these 12 items are best described as Mexican, American or Both.

1Caesar Salad

Both. Caesar Cardini, an Italian immigrant living in San Diego in the 1920s, invented this salad to satisfy hungry gringos who flocked to his Tijuana restaurant during Prohibition. His eponymous dining hall still stands on Tijuana’s Avenida de la Revolución.


Both. The masked hero of the Mexican countryside was actually created by Johnston McCulley, a pulp fiction writer of the 1920s who was born in Illinois. In most versions of the story, Zorro is the secret identity of Don Diego de la Vega, a nobleman in California in the era of Mexican rule. Nearly all the actors who have played the part have been Americans, with some notable exceptions (Antonio Banderas, for example, is Spanish).

3The World’s Hottest Chili Pepper


American. The Carolina Reaper is a chili pepper created in Rock Hill, South Carolina, by the PuckerButt Pepper Company. The reaper has been certified as the world’s hottest chili by Guinness World Records since 2013.

4Louis C.K.

Both. Born in the U.S. to a Mexican father, the comedian Louis C.K. lived in Mexico from age one to seven. He holds a Mexican passport.

5Boeing 787 Dreamliner

Both. U.S. airline giant Boeing makes its signature long-haul craft with parts from all over the world—including thrust reversers manufactured in Mexico.

6Cinco de Mayo

Both. Cinco de Mayo commemorates Mexico’s unlikely defeat over the French army in the Battle of Puebla in 1862, but the celebration is far more widely recognized in the U.S. than south of the border (to which an annual parade of tequila shots and mariachi bands can attest). Cinco de Mayo was first celebrated in the U.S. by immigrants during the Civil War. In Mexico, only the state of Puebla officially recognizes the holiday.


Mexican. No Tex-Mex here, chilaquiles are 100 percent Mexican. The tasty dish, prepared with fried tortillas and green or red chili sauce, is typically served for breakfast.

8Adrián González

Both. The all-star first-baseman was born and went to high school in San Diego, but grew up in Tijuana and played Little League on both sides of the border. He now plays for the Los Angeles Dodgers and has captained Mexico in the World Baseball Classic.


Both. Cattle herding may have originated in Spain, but the cowboy lifestyle first took root in the new world. The early cowboys were “vaqueros,” indigenous Mexicans trained by the Spanish in the 1500s. The activity later spread to Texas, Arizona and New Mexico in the 1700s – along with all the yee-haw we associate with cowboys today.

10Eva Longoria

Both. The actress was born in Texas to ninth-generation Mexican-American parents. She considers herself a “Texican.”

11The World’s Largest (Flying) Flag

Mexican. Despite Americans’ reputation for showy patriotism, the title for the world’s largest flag belongs to Mexico. Visitors to the capital Mexico City will find a few rather sizable examples, but the largest flag the world has ever flown was in the northern town of Piedras Negras in 2011, according to Guiness World Records.

Cadillac Escalade

Both. Cadillac, the second-oldest automobile brand in the U.S., manufactures its Cadillac Escalade SRX model in Mexico.

9 out of 12: You did great, congratulations. As you can see, the U.S. and Mexico share much more than a border – the interconnections between the two countries are too many to count. Share this quiz and see if your friends can do as well as you did.
6 out of 12: Not bad, but we’ve seen better. As you can see, the U.S. and Mexico share much more than a border – sometimes the connections between the two countries are surprising. Share this quiz and see if your friends can do as well as you did.
1 out of 12: Well, that didn’t go too well. Granted, some of the connections between the U.S. and Mexico are unexpected – the two countries share much more than a common border. Why don’t you take the quiz again and see if you can improve that score?
Photo Credits: Lead Art:Jamie Squire/Getty, Mat Hayward/Getty, Erik Simonsen/Getty, Food Image Source/Getty, Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call. Subsequent: Geoff Peters/WikiCommons; Orange County Archives/Flickr; Dale Thurber/Wikicommons; Flowizm/Wikicommons; Jose A. Montes/Wikicommons; dbking/Wikicommons; Masa Assassin/Flickr; Harry How/Getty; Moyan Brenn/Wikicommons; ImagineCup/Wikicommons; Alyse & Rami/Flickr, Raymond Wald/Flickr;

Tags: U.S.-Mexico border
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Any opinions expressed in this piece do not necessarily reflect those of Americas Quarterly or its publishers.
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