If you're heading to a lucha libre show in Mexico, you better have thick skin. Mexican professional wrestling matches are as much about shit-talking (inside and outside of the ring) as they are about the artfully dramatic fighting.
Walking into the Arena Coliseo de Guadalajara, you're greeted with delightful wafts of freshly popped corn and good-hearted jeers from the crowd. If you're a woman, you're probably getting called a whore. If you're a man, the slurs usually revolve around homosexuality. Despite the onslaught of obscenities, no one is offended.
Every Tuesday and Saturday, cheerfully rowdy crowds gather here in Guadalajara to watch the WWE-style wrestling phenomenon. Like any good spectator event, lucha offers stadium food to nosh on while you watch men battle each other with a mix of brawn and art.
Around the stadium, middle fingers fly and vendors walk through the aisles selling snacks like cotton candy and fat doughnuts. For something more substantial, head to the walk-up loncheria window serving hot dogs, hamburgers, sausage, and tostilocos. The stadium is beer-only, so no tequila (even though you're in tequila country). Wash down the insults with a draught Victoria beer or michelada.
I settled down with my beer to watch the mesmerizing insanity that is lucha. Spit and teeth fly, men soar through the air Superman-style—and not only inside the ring, but over the rails, too. It's so much more than a sport; it's theater, an experience that you'll instantly fall in love with if only for the electricity of the arena. As you watch a fighter grab a fistful of hair, stuff your face or join in with the chanting crowd.
This article originally appeared on MUNCHIES in January 2017.