A grocery store in downtown El Paso prominently displays a wall of alleged cheese thieves and it has us wondering about a few things.

Mata's Fruit Store on the corner of Seventh St. and Stanton St. in Segundo Barrio in downtown El Paso has been around since the mid 1950’s and if you’ve never been you are so missing out on some incredible values and of course the alleged cheese wall of shame.

I was at the store because they have a fantastic panaderia (bakery) to pick up some pastries for my brothers baby shower but it had been quite a while since I had visited the store. So i was pretty surprised as I approached the counter to pay and looked up to find printouts of camera picture stills plastered all over the wall with the words “Roba Quesos” which translates in English to “One who robs cheese”.

Here’s the thing – why are so many people allegedly stealing cheese?

While I do love cheese as much as our blurry suspects on the shaming wall of “Roba Quesos”, the question begs, why cheese and not a pound of meat or pasta which would be just as filling? Why is cheese so popular? Yes, cheese and Mexican food go hand in hand, but if I’m poor and I have just enough to make enchiladas and I have no cheese – I’ll cope, I won’t go steal cheese. Also, are they stealing a particular type of cheese such as Muenster or mozzarella and are they stealing the big blocks of cheese or the little blocks? Because if you’re planning on stealing then just go big and call it a day.

I realize times are tough and people do what they must to get by but this whole “Roba Quesos” wall threw me off especially because there were so many alleged suspects on it and it was just plain shocking.

So the next time you are shredding some cheese for your tacos – thank the cheese-mongers that you’re not featured on that wall of “Roba Quesos” because you are one of the lucky ones.

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