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Why Is This Popular? Moco de Gorilla Hair Goo

By Steve Mullaney

Style is different everywhere, but nowhere is this more apparent than in Guatemala where the majority of us fashionistas walk around puzzled. We try to bring you explanations behind the most confusing trends with Edgar, a middle school student at a local school. This month’s topic: Moca de Gorilla (Gorilla Snot) Hair Gel/Goo.

If you pass by any stand selling personal hygiene products you will invariably see small rectangular envelopes advertising something called “Moco de Gorilla”. Looking at the colorful package and whimsical name you may be tricked into thinking that is candy and squirt an entire envelope into your mouth. Here at XelaWho we try things so that you don’t have to: that is a very bad idea. Moco is hair gel. Not delicious candy.

Now, looking at the average Guatemalan youngster you may be tempted to think boys are born with their hair shellacked to their head. This is not the case. In its natural state Guatemalan hair is soft and fluffy – just like non-Guatemalan hair. Unfortunately, seeing such is hair is like seeing a quetzal: you need to be in the right place at the right time (i.e. the three minutes between shower and shellack). It is said that the average Guatemalan middle schooler goes through an elaborate three-hour ritual preparing his hair for public display. Ask your Spanish School for more information on how you can make a visit to see this cultural experience. And the most popular hair gel of all is Moco.

Based on my personal experience of using different hair gels to cover up my premature balding, I find no difference between brands – but what is apparent in talks with local middle schoolers is that Moco’s got attitude. What follows is a composite review of the product.

“First of all, there’s a gorilla on the package dripping snot. And this is cool. It infuriates our mothers, which is also cool. We insist on the purchase of Moco because it gives us a sense of being rebels – which we obviously are (EDITORS NOTE: they aren’t, but whatever.) and even if we aren’t using Moco we would want to say we were because that’s the cool thing to do.”

So there you have it: regular hair gel + pseudo-shocking packaging = middle school craze. If only someone would use the same logic to create an Xtreme Library Card.

COULD YOU PULL THIS OFF: Let’s be serious would you rather pay an extra Q15 for a name brand hair gel or have another beer? We thought so.

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