It hurts me to think that because of how people see gringas down here I am looked at as easy, unable to speak Spanish, wealthy, and stupid. I don´t want to accuse Ecuadorians of having a lot of false stereotypes, because many Americans who come here do not in fact speak Spanish and, after a few too many drinks, have been known to partake in questionable behavior. Americans do generally have more money than Ecuadorians. Although I hate the attention, I´ve found value in the experience because I now understand the power of stereotypes. We talk about them all the time, we all love to claim that we don´t believe them, and, for me at least, as a white middle class person living in a predominately white area, I don´t have to deal with them at home on a regular basis, or at least ones that hurt me in some way. Stereotypes do have immense power and do hurt individual people who have very probably done nothing to deserve them.
So the next time you see a tatooed guy with twenty piercings walking down the street, give him a chance. He could be a really cool dude.