¡LOTERIA! A phrase echoed throughout Latinx households around the holidays or at all family get-togethers that go on for way too long. This phrase usually accompanies cheers and comments of “nomas me faltaba una” while contestants clear the uncooked beans off their game board.
This is how loteria has been played for decades, long before most of us can remember. But now, everything has changed. Mike Alfaro, the mind behind various Latinx centric ad campaigns in Southern California, has put his own unique twist on this classic board game by creating a version of it that all the nieces and nietos can enjoy.
Millennial Loteria features the classic iconography of the original cards and adds the youthful flavor of millennial pop culture as a new way to reconnect with younger audiences who grew up playing this beloved game. With cards such as “La Feminista” and “La Selfie” Alfaro captures the spirit of “the most entitled generation” by poking fun at millennial stereotypes using a distinct medium.
With various cards which are inherently political such as “El Diablo” being reimagined as “La NRA” and “La Escalera” as “La Border Wall”, Alfaro doesn’t shy away from making statements for and about Latinx culture. In turn, this allows a space for dialogue between various familial generations on what many consider taboo subjects such as religion, sexuality and sexual orientation, politics, and even sexting. Knowing how difficult it might be to talk with family about these controversial issues, this game adds a bit of comic relief to break the ice and foster a better understanding between family members who grew up in different eras.
Unlike most “reimaginings” of our culture, this one was in fact created by a Latinx and captures certain nuances others miss the mark on. The game is available to purchase on Amazon for $23. So maybe this Christmas Eve, while we’re playing Loteria waiting for midnight, instead of hearing our parents playfully announce “el cazo que me haces” we’ll hear “los selfies que te tomas”.