What is Spanish Names?
“This game is full of cultural appropriation but here we go: You can only play it with a new person, and you say ‘hey, let’s play Spanish names,’ and someone is in charge and they assign everyone a Spanish name. And the new person, you name them ‘Arted,’ and the other people, you name ‘Maria’ or ‘Rosa’ and stuff like that. And then you go around and you say “Eif” and then your name, so the person names Arted says ‘Eif Arted’ which is like ‘I farted.’ And then you go around and say it louder and louder and faster and faster until the poor new kid is yelling ‘I farted.’ (laughs) It’s totally not real Spanish.”
Where did you play it?
“(laughs) Hebrew School! At our very PC synagogue.”
My informant is my twin sister. She is Jewish, attended Los Angeles public school, and is currently a USC student. She attended Hebrew school from third grade through high school. This information was collected during a family zoom call where we were checking in with each other.
Spanish Names is a game where there is an obvious in-group and out-group. There are those who have played the game before and understand the joke, and then there is the one person who has never played and is unknowingly going to end up as the butt of the joke. It plays into young children’s senses of bathroom humor through fart jokes, plus it humiliates a new person through a made-up Spanish word places between stereotypical Spanish names. The entire game is a set up to embarrass a single person, which brings a lot of joy to those who are in the know throughout the entire game.