Castigado! You’re punished!


So are you ready to learn about the most awfully painful card game?

A few days ago when fellow writers Camilo Smith and Alexis Okeowo and I headed to the Basilica de la Virgen de Guadalupe we found it deserted.

No tourists and nearly no worshippers except for a handful nuns and a couple renewing their vows the area was deserted. Most stalls were shut down with no one to sell to because of Mexico City’s action to shut down public places, including areas of worship to help prevent the spread of swine flu or H1N1.

So what do those die hard vendors and taxi drivers around the basilica do when there is no work? They play Castigado!

Estos chavos, made up of a taxi driver, nearby vendors were playing castigado or punished one (of which I could fine no links online):


So how does this work? Well it’s pretty simple, below are a few cards since this game doesn’t use a normal U.S. style card deck.


But it’s pretty simple, you are trying to drop the cards in your hand. Each person places a card down and then whoever placed the lowest card collects the deck. It keeps going until one poor soul . . . during this game it happened to be this guy:


Is stuck with the deck. So now why is this so awful? Well they put the deck in front of him and tell him to select a card without looking. This guy chose something like the 10 King of coins, anyway they start flipping each card and each symbol equals a punishment, done as many times as it is printed on the card, until the card he called appears.

So for example the six of spears means six jabs in the side. This continues until they reached the card the kid called at first. You had to feel sorry for this guy, his card was fourth from last.

Spears = jab in the side


Sword = punch under the chin


and the absolute worst:

Coin = pinch your eyelids (some guys don’t just pinch one eyelid but both at a time)




Of course there was the shoulder punch, and one other, but overall the top three stood out.

Here are some pics of the game before it got crazy:




And here is the after photo I took of him:


Thank goodness there are things to do in this city again . . . I was getting ready to play castigado, join the neighbors for some 9pm karoake last Saturday, or just feel as sad as this little dog looks outside the grocery store:




2 thoughts on “Castigado! You’re punished!

  1. What a beautiful series of pictures. It reminds me of other kids pulling my eye lids while playing cards in Mexico. Thanks for the memories…

  2. LOVE the card game story… we should play sometime! Although maybe we’d have to invent our own rules. I don’t want my eyelids pinched.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s