The Ten Types of Iconic Miami Mothers
Mother's Day is this Sunday, and you better have plans, because mothers in Miami not only deserve it but also won't let you forget it if you neglect to celebrate their holiday. To honor the moms of the 305, New Times presents some common Miami mother archetypes and the local ladies, both fictional and real, who represent them best.
The All-American Immigrant Mother (AKA Juana From ¿Qué Pasa, USA?)
She came to this country for a better life, and by golly, it's actually worked out pretty well, but now she's trying to raise Americanized children who are growing up in a culture she's still trying to understand. Juana Peña perfectly illustrated that struggle in the classic Little Havana sitcom ¿Qué Pasa, USA? She didn't quite understand the culture her kids were growing up in (or the slang and lingo that came with it), but she sure was happy to see them thrive in it.
The "Ride or Die" Mom (AKA "Chonga Mom" Irisdaly Rios)
She's more of a big sister than a mother. She's got your back if the bitches at school are talking shit, and she'd like you to have her back when you two go out to the club later.
When Irisdaly Rios, a Hialeah mother, was arrested last year after jumping out of her car and getting into a physical confrontation with her middle-school-aged daughter's schoolyard enemies, it made national headlines, but Miamians weren't very surprised. We all know someone with a mom who would do the same.
Screencap from Scarface
The "Get Out of My House — You've Disappointed Me for the Last Time" Mom (AKA Georgina Montana From Scarface)
A lot can be said about the acting in Scarface, but can we talk about how Míriam Colón perfectly captured the disapproving stare of a mother who is fed up with her no-good son (fun fact: She's only three years older than Al Pacino)? Despite the best efforts of some moms, there are a lot of dirtbags and two-bit criminals running around this town, and sometimes that's just too much for Mama to accept. Mothers do have an intuition, and that includes knowing when their own child is no good. Apparently sometimes that even includes having a hunch your son might turn into an addicted coke kingpin who fantasies about his sister shortly before she's killed in an international drug cartel shootout.
The "Guess Who's Coming to Retire in Miami?" Mom (AKA Sophia Petrillo From The Golden Girls)
If it's not a reality, this is the secret fear of all Miamians who moved here as adults. You got here on your own. You created a life for yourself, but mom is back in the hometown (or home country as it may be) alone with nothing to do, and of course she has always dreamed of retiring in Florida. So guess who wants to come live with you? Mommy! And suddenly you're a teenager again with the benefit of hearing your mother's old-country wisdom and the con of her constantly picking at your dating life. The only chance you have of avoiding this fate is reciting the sacred chant, "You know, Ma, you might actually like it better up in Broward. Maybe we could get you a place up there?"
The "Mommy Is Making Money — Don't Ask How" Mom (AKA Griselda Blanco)
Lots of moms in Miami make money in less than ethical ways while raising kids, and depending upon their viewpoint, Griselda Blanco is either their patron saint or their worst nightmare of what could go wrong. The Colombian-born queenpin was running one of the world's largest cocaine rings out of Miami while raising three young boys. Unfortunately, they all followed mom into the family business and wound up in prison and later dead after being deported to Colombia. A fourth son, Michael Corleone Blanco, born later in life, is still alive but faces cocaine-related legal problems of his own.
The "Mystic" Mother (AKA Elsa Patton from The Real Housewives of Miami)
She may not look like many other moms, but Elsa shares a lot of attributes with other Miami mothers: a fondness for drinking (both coffee and wine), constant reminders she didn't come to this country to lead a less than fabulous life, and sometimes embarrassing bluntness. The one thing that really made her a breakout star, however, was her self-proclaimed "witch" status. There are a lot of mothers in Miami whose answer to all problems involves throwing some sage around, lighting candles, saying some chants, or going to see someone about some help — don't mind the dead chickens.
The "Way Too Hot" Mom (AKA Lacey Wildd)
Lacey Wildd is a South Florida mother of six who happens to have some of the biggest breasts in the world — and aims to one day hold the world record for bra size. Of course, they're fake. Naturally, one of her daughters wound up on MTV True Life's I Have a Hot Mom. Though an extreme situation, it's not uncommon here to grow up with a mom who is all about vanity.
The "Single Socialite" Mom (AKA Evelyn Lozada)
She's got kids, and she's looking for the perfect step-father for them. In Miami, that means keeping her look on point, her clothes right, and hitting the social scene. Evelyn Lozada's quest to balance her love life and motherhood has been documented on various VH1 reality TV shows for five years, but the single-socialite mom's motherly instinct means she won't settle for any man who is less than ideal.
The "Boss" Mom (AKA Julia Tuttle, the Mother of Miami)
Julia Tuttle gave birth to not only this city but also two children. After her husband died and left her in financial turmoil while trying to finish raising their two teenage children, she began renting out rooms in the family home to get by. Eventually, she inherited some South Florida land from her father. She was also instrumental in persuading Henry Flagler to extend his railroad to the area and was integral to incorporating the area as the City of Miami. Basically, she's the spirit animal of all Miami moms who are doing big things in their community.
"La Chancleta Enforcer" Mom (AKA ???)
We guess society and pop culture have failed to give us a true Miami-based icon for this type of mother (though there are plenty of memes and viral videos that have tried), which is a shame because no list of common Miami mother traits is complete without it. She's the kind of mom who's not gonna take your shit, and she's not above taking off her sandal to remind you.
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