Monday, December 28, 2009

Ingles sin Barreras

Why I haven't written a post about one of the BIGGEST products in the Latino/a community is beyond me. Next to tortillas and beans, Ingles sin Barreras is known by almost everyone. I was listening to Spanish radio last Sunday and an infomercial for another similar product was on. I listened attentively to how the commercial really focuses and plays on peoples personal lives. They do this by repeating and stressing the fact that a person needs English to succeed in the U.S. that they risked their lives and their families to get here, crossing, paying thousands of dollars, looking for a better life etc. They hit every key point, tugging at peoples heart strings and trying to, nay, exploiting them. It works because people listen.

So, a little history on the product then. According to their web site, which has on option to switch the language from Spanish to English, this product is owned by a marketing firm and it started out back in 1988, to help Latinos/as learn the English language to succeed and to better assimilate.

"Lexicon Marketing began in Miami, Florida in 1974 to serve the educational needs of the Hispanic community in the United States. Josà Luis Nazar, Lexicon's founder, recognized the need for Hispanics to learn English with an appropriate method, a method that was convenient to use at home and easy to comprehend. As a recent immigrant to the U.S. from Chile, Mr. Nazar knew first hand the difficulties involved in learning English with the available resources at that time. He set about to provide the right tools for Hispanics to learn English and succeed in the U.S by creating his first audiovisual course, "Inglés Sin Barreras", a name that has become a household brand in the US Hispanic community." 

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Super Hero dualities

"With great power comes great responsibility."

Been watching a lot of Spider Man lately on tv and this has got me thinking. This only makes sense in my head, but sometimes it feels like life imitating art, mostly because Spider Man was created WAY before I was born and on the stereotypes of a social out cast who is squirming his way through life and taking guff from everyone because he can't stand up for himself yada, yada, yada. Basically me through all of high school. I also tend to use comic book heroes in my analogies of undocumented people because of the obvious dualities we both share. Mostly stuff with having a secret identity, living outside the normal parameters of everyday life, again with the social outcast and a few more other topics that tend to focus more on me personally.

You would think that if I were to identify with comic characters I would gravitate more toward Superman, the Ultimate Illegal Alien or the X-Men, people who have to fight for their right to live from an ignorant and in there case, gene'ophobic society. And I do, but at the end of the day it's Spider Man all the way, the working class hero. Comparisons like this one don't really help things in the long run because it's just fantasy and escape, but it does help filter and guide in the absence of the real thing from friends and family. It's only natural that we all tend to live vicariously through other entities fictional or not. I just do it more with comics because I grew up on them and I have a profound love for them the same way other people love poetry, short stories etc.   

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Quick Draw

I think I'd like to do something nice for somebody
I think it's good if you smile at somebody and they smile in return
Voluntary love encourages people to create a sense of friendlyness
Love that is unconditional gives us respect as people
However, it is wrong to force love to try to keep it alive
If the strain goes on, eventually it will bloom into the flower called
The deceptively, thorny flower that hurts people

Yashihiro Nightgow

~ con safos ~

Friday, December 25, 2009


"Cama cama cama camaleón yo soy el camaleón Cama cama cama camaleón yo soy el camaleón A mi me dicen el camaleón por que cambio de Color para cada situación yo tengo un color Mejor" 

~ My mom is something when she's drunk. Come to think of it, I've never seen my mom drunk. My dad a bunch of times but not her. She works hard and she deserved it :) Anywho, I've made some changes to this place. Ive' had the same layout and color scheme for going on what... . three years ? Damn that's a long time !!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Looking back

"Best to you. Please stay strong. Do what it takes. Chant. Find an SGI organization. Chant nam myo ho renge kyo. Do what ever it takes to be legal in this country without hurting another, especially a woman who will love you deeply. You can do it."

~ You know that feeling of emptiness and loss of direction you get when you go on break from school or work ? I got a bit of that today, so I spent the day cleaning and organizing things. I looked through all my school stuff and got rid of things I don't need. Online I cleaned out my gmail since I use that the most. At this point, I'm not even going to touch my yahoo account. Pfft screw that. I'd rather be out on the streets doing something. I looked over 726 emails until I was left with 69. Yeah.

But it was cool though, you know because during the process I reread old emails and just went back to that moment in the email. Some of the older emails were of people emailing me in response to this blog, like the quote I put at the top or this one, "Keep up the good work kid. You're fighting the good fight." I needed to read that with the year coming to an end, which is why I made it a point to clean and organize. In some of those emails I also got spam, mentions of things I'm doing now like working with people at UCLA on DREAM Act stuff, meeting friends for the first time and the one that hit the old ticker was emails from other people with no papers telling me how they found this blog, how they related to everything I write about and how glad they are they found someone to share their thoughts with.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

To recognize yourself or not, that is the question

In my life there has always been a divide in recognition. You see, growing up my parents never gave me positive attention in recognition for doing a good job at something or encouragement that we all crave and look for. That "good job mijo, I'm proud of you." *hug* "Let's go buy you a paleta." *smile* I would remember as a kid my dad bragging to his friends, in a drunken stupor, how I got 8's, 9's and 10's when I was in kinder garden. That's as far as it got really. When I graduated from high jr. high and high school all we did was go to the buffet. Hmm... in retrospect it all seems so empty and meaningless now. It's not their fault though. They didn't get any of that support from their parents either, in fact they got quite the opposite from what they say, so It's only natural that they wouldn't know how to express such feelings genuine sense of recognition, but they showed it in their own way.

Last week I got back my paper, which I posted here, on relating a story from "The Republic of East L.A." to stuff from class. I got an A+, as you can see from the pic. When I got the paper back I had mix feelings. For one, the paper was easy for me to write. I didn't struggle doing it and it all flowed really. Partly because I payed attention in class and did the reading and stuff, still. It felt weird, specially reading her comments about how she really dug what I wrote in tying both the book and class to my personal stuff. I wanted to post it on facebook and be all like, "I got an A+ on my paper. Awwwww yeah !!" but then I said, "no. It's that kind of flashy'ness that takes away from the grade and work you put in, being all loud and proud. It's only a paper." I later ended up telling one person. I couldn't help myself :-)

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Searching for a heart of Gold

Much like the bear, I too am feeling like smiling again. As some of you have read, I wasn't doing to well and got down on myself. Someone commented that I should stop because I'm making them depressed ahaha It's been about a good solid month that I've been on my own again. We all have our ups and down and age does help, trust me. It's all a matter of getting it out through positive channels, talking and making peace with it, more or less. Needless to say I have a few good poems that I will be sharing at open mic events. So as of right now, all is well in the world of El Random Hero again, as well as it can get anyway.

I have made peace with myself again and I can tell I am getting older and wiser. I am focusing on going back to the way things were 7 months ago, writing, going to events on my own and living my life. It's great to have someone to share it with, no doubt about it, but that's not where my life is right now. It would seem that there is a universal rule for being in a relationship, from my experience and talking to others about this, and that is that you must be able to stand on your own two feet. This can be interpreted as not living with the parents, having a "good job" and having a stable life. This current chapter of my life doesn't allow for that. I'm transferring to CSUN, GOD WILLING I GET IN ALREADY, and frankly, that's where my money and energy are going.

I would love to be able to share my experiences with someone else as I continue my journey, but that's not in the cards, something I have to keep reminding myself of every so often. Alas, the lone wolf continues his journey into Valhalla. This past Sunday I was given some words of wisdom, words that I am taking to the heart because she is older and has seen the world more than I could ever hope to right now. She told me what I needed to her, not just her but some other friends as well. I needed to hear that. We all lose ourselves that it's often necessary to reevaluate where we are and what we are doing.

It's getting closer to the end of the year, it's only natural. As always,, I will be chronicling my thoughts and journey on this here blogiddy blog. I may lose some of you and I may gain new people, it happens. This is more for me than anyone else. Stick around. You never know what's next.  

Friday, December 11, 2009

Community Cultural Wealth

I've talked about the great stuff I've been learning in my Chicano Studies class this semester. FYI I've only taken two Chicano studies class IN MY ENTIRE ACADEMIC LIFE. One about murals and this one about contemporary issues, everything else I've learned on the streets. Needless to say that the switch from learning this stuff first hand and then reading about it from an academia point of view is quite a change. Frankly, I love both but if I had to choose, I love academia way more. Seriously, reading books, research notes, articles and all that other stuff is the shizz. I'm like aaawwwww yeah !! That's what I'm talking about. Mostly cause it makes me feel ubber smart :) Anyway..... in my class, the teacher had an intern/junior teacher, who is a Chicano Studies higher education major who just graduated from CSUN with her masters, go CSUN.

For the latter half of the class, she took over and focused on the educational pipe line and things of that nature. Nothing new to me since I've read about that before, but great stuff none the less. Here is some of the stuff we discussed in class. And when I say discuss, I mean she talks, the class listens and says nothing and I'm the only one saying stuff. Not all the time, but I do feel like I dominate the class with my questions. My final for this class is Monday so this is from the notes I made earlier today to study. If you are interested in finding out more, look up Tara Yosso, she's one of the main researchers contributing to this subject. EVERYTHING I MENTION NOT ONLY APPLIES, BUT INCREASES TEN FOLD FOR UNDOCUMENTED STUDENTS.

Thursday, December 10, 2009


For those of you reading my thoughs as of late, you know that my mind has been on other things. Too be honest, that's been happening for longer than I care to remember. When I first started to write, it was more to inform than to vent. Yet, with soo many other new outlets, like dream activist and other people blogging about being undocumented from a variety of aspects, I began to focus more on myself. Natrually, this space turned into more of a diary sorts with each post.And to be honest, somewhere along I kinda ran out of things to talk about and explain. I talked about ID's, the DREAM Act, legislation and other stuff of that nature and again, you can easaly find that kind of information somewhere else.

I guess it's a nutural fit that this space starting developing into that diary, rather than just being another blog that regergitates info that others may write about and add my two cents to it. One thing is for sure though, people seem to be getting tired of the, "I'm heart broken, therefore I'm sad and depressed routine." So I'll turn it down not just for people that are tired of reading that, but because it's not healthy to dwell on things like that. Energy is in constant motion, as should I. I've been described as a "relationship kind of guy" so I get in touch with my inner emotions. Moving on.

I was checking out the campus progress email news letter and they mentioned a story in the Washington Post about homeless college students:
Lewis and Wilson are both in their 20s, both college students and both homeless.
Their stories are remarkable and humbling in so many ways. They shatter our assumptions about who is homeless, and they put so many of our daily struggles in stark perspective. 

It's easy to get caught in our lives and our daily happenings, with friends and of course family. It's easy to ignore and shut out everything happening in the world, specially since we are all so disconnected from each other. For me, more than anything, being homeless was always around the corner, specially when I was a kid. My parents had to look after four kids and they do what they have to. For that I am always thankful and appreciative of them. It's easy to get got caught within ourselves and think that we have it worse than anyone else. We don't. I don't. I don't tell myself that as an excuse to justify or alleviate problems in my life. I do it as a reminder that life is a struggle and nothing can stop us from getting what we want when we set our minds to it. We all get distracted every now and then, it's ok to be selfish. Just don't make a habbit of it. Advice I should be implicating rather than preaching.     

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Lost July

Lost July

The longer one holds onto a memory
The longer one lives in the past
The deeper the memory they hold onto
The more beautiful the past will become
The beautiful memories will eventually turn into hate
Even if they look ahead, they lose the ability to walk
As long as the heavy chain of regret continues to fetter the heart
As long as the tears of sadness continue to flow

Originally posted on myspace on July 22, 2006

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Nuevo dia

I deleted all the pictures I had on my phone. All 2 gigs of them. It's
safe to say that I almost average out a pic a day. I love taking pics
and sharing them with others. They say things words fail to describe
sometimes. Part of the reason I did it was because I need to move on.
Whether I like it or not. Looking through the pics I can remember what
was going on that day. It also brings up feelings.

At first I said to myself that I should leave them there. That way I
can get use to seeing the past and not have regrets about it and I
don't. I saved all the pics. But it's too much. I lose myself in
pictures of her, which there are a lot of. I don't like the way i feel
inside looking at those pics. Hollow and scortched. I don't understand
why it's hitting me know. I though I was in a good place, but I'm not.

My mind can only be distracted for soo long before I start dwelling on
her again. It's really a horrible feeling. I hate it. It's almost
purpetual because I don't know when it'll stop. I want it to be soon.
Sad face :-(
~ con safos ~

Monday, December 07, 2009

Alchemy of the heart

You see that sky right there ? That's how I feel on the inside right now, like I'm on fire. It's both a good and bad kind of burning. First the good, California State University Northridge, fall 2010. Yes, today I got a letter to set up my online account and to track my progress. Somehow they knew that I have all my inoculations already. I got send in my transcripts ASAP and basically start working as much as I can at a job I completely HATE more than anything in life, considering I don't harbor hate for anything. Just setting up the stuff online got me all psyched up, like if I was going to wrestle someone right now.

Now for the bad, it's hard to describe and narrow it down because everyday is different. A few days ago I had three dreams in a row, one that I forgot about and two that I remembered. I didn't like the last one because it was at CSUN. Maybe it's anxiety for the change that is taking place, the work that I have done and the five years I've spent at my community college getting to this point. Finals are also next week and that only adds fuel to the anxiety. There's soo many thoughts going through my head, I can't make sense of it all. I wanna sit down and talk to someone about it all and get it off my chest, but instead I find myself, here, writing them out because I know friends are dealing with their own stuff as it is.

The days are going by faster and faster and my state of mind shifts from one end to another as if it was a freaking pinball machine. I wake up with the blues, but by mid afternoon I get into a work groove and go on about my day to day stuff. I don't like it. I don't like it one bit because I know what's causing it. My chest feels empty and I know why. It's a delayed reaction to say the least, but I know what's causing it, heart ache. At first I was busy with school work to keep me going and keeping me away from that route. I went out with friends and to events to clear my mind and try to go back to the way things use to be 7 months ago when I was happy being on my own. It's not happening.

It's not messing with my work, but it's there. That empty feeling. It's like, one day I woke up and I realized what had really happened. What I lost and I looked to myself and saw that deep casm that reaches the horizon, it was empty and barron. I realized what I had and it began to hit me. I was in love with someone and I lost them. I know it's love and not infatuation or anything like that. I know that because I feel deep inside my chest and heart. This totally sucks. It's horrible. I hate it. In the past I would spiral into lunacy, but I know better. However, it still can't fix how I feel. I know things get better with time, I've done it before. This time around though, it's not getting any better. Time is frozen. It's like I don't even want to try and be with someone else because my heart won't be in it.

I can find an aztec princess who is into all the stuff I'm into, creative, an artist, active in life and the community, looking at the big picture and helping others, spreading the seeds of knowledge and all that good stuff. I have no doubt in my mind that in the circles that I am a part of I will find someone of that caliber, but I don't want that. I know what I want. I don't need to see what else is out there because I know what I want. Yet, there is a distinct difference in the things that we want for ourselves and what the creator, the universe and life have in store for us. I remember telling a friend that rejection is life's way of saying that even though we want to be THERE, you really need to be HERE. It's hard being alone again. I was alone and happy once and I gotta find a way to get there again. Trying to forget someone you love is like trying to forget someone you never knew. Sad face :-(

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Emotional Bears

Claw at you

Smell your reached hide miles away from the recesses of their cave

They find you wherever you are

Your emotional emotions draw them to you

You stare in fear, paralyzed waiting to be sliced at the heart

Bleeding out, as your blood runs through your fingers

Escaping and staining the floor, frantically trying to catch it to put it back in

It takes another swipe at you, cutting deeper than before

You search for your detached limb trying to put it back in place

Yet, it doesn't fit the same way it did before

It's uneven, lope sided and upside down

It will never be the same again

The Bear stares at you, arching his back, showing teeth

You stare back with blood soaked hands, questioning his next move

Hearts racing like never before, conflict in the air

Finally, you let the bear finish his job

You embrace his bone crushing jaws as he tears your flesh

The pain comes as relief, freeing you

He eats everything but your heart

Emotional bears can attack without notice at any given time

So keep your emotions in check, less you become the victim of another Emo Bear attack !!!

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

All I wanna do, is a zuma, zum, zum in your boom, boom

It's December and for those of us in academia, teaching/learning, it means it's crunch time with finals, projects, presentations and papers on whatever it is we were learning through out the semester. In my case I had to crank out a 10 minute speech on the DREAM Act, of course, and a another paper for Chicano Studies. There's a good possibility that I might end up failing speech class and if that happens, transferring and graduating are in jeopardy.

So right now the plan is to take it again int he spring with my other classes, which would mean I would have an insane work load with 17 units. But how can you fail speech when you're giving DREAM Act speeches left and right ? Good question. To answer it, the speech teacher is DICK HEAD !! One of those teachers that uses the class to make up for his failings in life or something to that affect, where the teacher likes to control the class because the world outside the class room treats him like shit.

Always making inappropriate personal comments about his personal views and who he thinks is an idiot. Treats the class like high school kids and creates a tense learning environment. I respect his policy on not taking crap from people and expecting certain things from everyone, however, his teaching is horrid and vapid. He's been teaching way too long and is just holding out for retirement. ANYWAY .... Chicano Studies on the other hand is completely different from the speech teacher with the napoleon complex. This class is molding and cementing the foundation I have been working and building on the last few years.

It's insane the concepts and ideas I've been forming and how it's translating into other aspects of my life. Suddenly becoming a Chicano Studies major is something I'm seriously looking into and considering. Last time I posted my 10 page paper on my dissecting and interpretation of the book we used for class, well this time around it's the same formula but with the book, "The Republic of East L.A." by Luis J. Rodriguez. I loved reading all the short stories in the book, especially the one about a guy who wants to be a reporter, straight outta my alma mater Taco Tech, and how he out scoops the L.A. Times in a story that happened in East Los.

I highly recommend the book to anyone as it's a great read or any of his other books for that matter. I've had the opportunity to meet Rodriguez a few occasions already and it wasn't until I read the book that I introduced myself to him. Great guy and down to earth like you wouldn't belief. ANYWAY... here's the paper I turned in. Six pages and it's on the story called, Pigeons. Sorry for ruining it for ya. I had to tie in stuff from class and handouts.

On my last paper, a gracious reader was kind enough to read the ENTIRE thing, word for word and give me a few pointers, which are highly welcomed, so thank you. He gave me a B+, which is what my teacher gave me more or less. I think I did better this time around. Enjoy.

Are individuals a product of their environment or is their environment a product of the individual ? Both are essential and play key roles in the formation and creation of how individuals identify themselves, others, their environment and how they interact with others and their environments on various levels. The short story, “Pigeons” By Luis J. Rodriguez in the book, The Republic of East L.A. highlights some of the issues that arise when families and individuals from similar backgrounds, grow up in different environments, develop dramatically different as individuals and their perception of not only their environment, but of others as well.

The story is centered around two families, the Duran family, which immigrated from rustic shacks in Tijuana to Boyle Heights in East L.A. and the Lujan family, who immigrated from a small village in Sinaloa to West Covina. Rodriguez uses Mexican stereotypes for his characters personalities and type specific traits to describe them, like character of Monte, from the Duran family, wearing Raiders clothing and having a laid back attitude, and Montes description of his girlfriends mother, Socorro from the Lujan family, as an Indian found in the pages of National Geographic Magazine. He also vividly uses “Spanglish”, English and Spanish combined in conversational speech throughout the story and describing the families personal perspectives growing up in two diverse areas of Los Angeles. The Duran family living with gangs, violence with a heavy Latina/o population, while the Lujans live in the middle of suburbia, where the majority of residents are Anglo.

The different acculturation patterns, described by Hurtado and Gurin in their book, Chicana/o Identity in a Changing U.S. Society, as the degree in which minorities adopt main stream values and customs, are made evident by the fact that this is the over all theme of the story Rodriguez has crafted. In chapter one of the book, acculturation is discussed as it is connected to assimilation, becoming like the majority group. Both the families have similar back grounds, yet because they lived in polar opposite cities, their assimilation and development of their personal identities dramatically differ. Their experiences living in their communities and their interaction with others shape their individuality, as explained by the social engagement model, which is used to understand how individuals define their environment in relation to their behavior and motivation.

When my parents brought me to the U.S. at the age of seven, the first place we lived in was Boyle Heights. From there we moved all over the city living in Watts, South Central, Compton, Inglewood and Long Beach until we finally settled back in Boyle Heights. Never having stability and always being the new kid at school was a double edge sword in terms of my personal development because I alienated myself, but adapted. Living in different, yet similar cities with a heavy African American population also created a feeling of being a minority within a minority. Naturally at such a young age, I adopted habits and mannerisms that are attributed to the African American community. I was still an outsider, but I was able to navigate and survive in that environment. It is safe to say that I assimilated out of need rather than that of personal growth, but none the less my environment and my interaction with it played a key role in the development that is still prevalent in me to this day.

The details of the story are told through a conversation the Duran brothers, Monte and Miguel, have at a birthday party for Benita, the daughter of Montes girlfriend Berta, in East L.A. The rest of the family members are talked about and described in minor detail and only explored in detail when adding to the story. The two families backgrounds are explored in detail as the conversation carries on. Monte, through inner dialogue, describes how the projects they grew up in were riddled with gangs and violence on a daily basis. He described the architecture of the facilities, which aided police when looking for criminals and how they managed to escape the gang life by working hard to make a living. This is viewed as normalcy in East L.A. while at the same time, the Lujans grew up on the other side of town in West Covina. Socorro, the mother of the Lujan family reminisces about life in her village in Sinaloa. She describes the serene and holistic setting of her homeland, running around as a child with her brother, carefree and day dreaming to her hearts content. In her later years, family duty demanded that she leave her village and move to the U.S. with her husband and kids as they found success when they opened their own Mexican meat specialty store (Carniceria). Even though she hates their new life, she remains silent and bears with the changes as the family assimilated.

As Monte succinctly puts it, his family is “puro East Los”, playing on cultural stereotypes about the communities affluent Latina/o/o population. The description of the projects and life there are not only first hand experiences from Rodriguez himself, but also that of internalized oppression. The hand out on concepts and terms describes it as the belief that oppressed minorities believe the dominant's group labeling of them as inferior. The structure of the projects can also be seen as a type of segregation because only gang members and low income families are given housing there. Residents are treated as if they're in faux prisons and are monitored by authorities. In Socorros case, patriarchy plays a dominant role in her chosen silence and bearing with the changes in the environment. In class discussions we had about gender roles, we identified that in the Latina/o culture, oppression of women is common practice. Sandra Ibarra from the East LA Women's Center also reinforced that practice in her class visit/lecture on domestic violence. However, she shows resistance by never learning English and refusing to forget her native language.

Throughout elementary school and all of ninth grade, I lived and attended schools next to the Watts housing projects. At the time, I never realized what that really meant because it was the normalcy. School up to that point did a commendable job of institutionalizing kids in ignoring the plight and decrepit conditions of the schools I attended. Like Monte, I came to accept it as everyday life and like Socorro, I too long for the care free life of the rancho (ranch). For three months before my family made the trek to cross to the U.S. we lived on my great grandmothers ranch while my dad got things ready for the family. At seven years old, I spent my days swimming in the river bed, playing with farm animals and running around all over the place. Having lived both lives, I would choose to go back to the ranch, but I know that eventually I would still end upin a metropolitan area. Last I heard from my mom, that ranch is all but dead of the beauty and life it once had.

As the conversation between the brothers carries on, the different levels of assimilation for each family is made apparent in relation to their environment. Monte describes how the Lujan family, over time changed the pronunciation of their names to a more Americanized form as they also began to lose some of their Spanish speaking skills. Some married Anglos and Monte makes it clear that he is OK with them marrying because he prides himself on not being judgmental. This is because he blames undocumented immigrants for his job troubles, making the community look tacky and referring to them as, “Tijuaneros”. A derivative term that describes people of Mexican decent as poor miscreants who are a plight on society. The conversation escalates as Miguel gives Monte a lecture about how they were called “Tijuaneros” when they were kids and how that made them feel inferior, how they didn't have positive Latina/o role models in their lives and the loss of their community from all the development and gentrification happening around them. The argument finishes as two children are caught killing pigeons for food and Monte uses them as an example of the deteriorating state of their neighborhood. He exclaims that hey have to learn to be American or get out.

It's blatantly obvious that Monte has assimilated and been Americanized to the point that he no longer values his roots and heritage. His claim that he's been unable to find a job because of undocumented immigrants is false founded. According to the report, Latino Policy and Issues Brief: Wage Penalties in Brown-Collar Occupations, from the UCLA Chicano Studies Department from 2003, newly arrived immigrant males living in Metropolitan areas accounted for 29 percent of the labor force. This was predominantly focused on “Brown-collar” jobs, which include waiter's assistants, gardeners, groundskeepers, cooks, farm workers and painters. Since Monte was a foundry worker, he lost his job because of less demand and more automated factories doing his job. The report also says that workers with a 10th grade education and lower tend to make $3,360 less than educated workers. Another report from the NCLR published in 2008 titled, Key Facts on the Food Insecurity and Hunger Among Latino/a Children, found that 12.9 million families in the U.S. are food insecure. This means that the families don't have access to nutritious foods. Some of the consequences of not eating right include children developing language, motor skill, behavior learning and socio-emotional problems. This is why Miguel defends the kids killing the pigeons for food.

Growing up in my family, there were times when just trying to make ends meat was a reality. My parents did their best to make sure we always had food and housing, but things out of their control that included the current economic and working climate. Often times we would turn to eating beans, rice and tortillas for extended periods of time so they could pay the rent. Experiences like that also brought up questions within my self of who am I as an individual and as a member of a larger ethnic group. What I learned at school and watched on T.V. were completely different from what I saw and lived everyday. Essentially, by watching American sitcoms and the Simpsons, I was Americanized to the point that I was able to excel socially and not be made fun of for being Mexican or be called names. I also learned a lot of useless popular culture history that has become invaluable in relating with others about the unique experiences when growing up Latina/o. I retained my roots and culture because of my family, but I assimilated through a paradox of watching T.V., reading comic books and playing video games, creating an anomaly within myself.

An individuals assimilation is tied to their environment, whether it is done subconsciously or not. The intensity of an individuals assimilation and to an extent, Americanization are deemed positive or negative, again depending on the individuals self image and by the recognition of others in the same group. There is no way around it, but it is only after becoming self aware of the process, analyzing it and forming more detailed constructs of one's self image. Not everyone can get to that point and it leads to narrow minded individuals, like Monte who after assimilating, become prejudice against people from his racial group. Perpetuating a cycle of ignorance and hate that prevents ethnic minorities from gaining positive recognition in society.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Encounters of the AB 540 kind

I'm writing this between classes and I'm super hungry, as per usual. Today in speech class I was talking to a fellow classmate about what we were going to do our perspective speeches on. It has to be persuasive and something that we are passionate about, hence the DREAM Act was a no brainer. I've given speeches and talks about it before and doing under the guide lines of the class will help me improve and refine it. I got all my info (pro and con) to back it up and now it's just a matter of making an outline and giving the speech.

During the chat he mentioned that he still didn't know what he was going to do it on and I mentioned to him what I was doing my on and what the DREAM Act is. He told me that he's an undocumented student as well. I didn't get a chance to tell him I was one too. So he was explaining to me how he pays cash for everything and that he got into CSUN, but couldn't afford the 6 g's in tuition, so he came to ELAC.

Weird how that works really. Every time someone talks about the DREAM Act, whether in a class room setting or in public, that's more people who are aware of it and how it can help. My class mate didn't know about it and I knew from the look of reaction I saw in his eyes. I'm positive that the rest of my class hasn't even heard about it either. My speech is on Monday and after today, I know that there is going to be at least one person who is going to benefit from it directly. Even if I speak in front of a thousand people and only one person is awakened, than that's one more person that will join the fight and help spread the word.

Monday, November 23, 2009


November marks the anniversary of my arrival to my adoptive home, the United States of America. 18 years and counting. I may have writen about this before somewhere, but it's always good to revisit some things. I was talking to my mom earlier today and I was joking with her about having a celebration with fire works, hot dogs, hamburgers and apple pie with american cheese on it. 18 years is a long time and we have built our lives in this country. Our lively hoods just like anyone else that has immigrated here, but therein lies the truth.

The story of families uprooting themselves from their home countries usually involves hardship, poverty, political unrest, war, violence and the hunger for a better quality of life. Not with my family. For you see, when my family, mainly my dad, decided to cross over he did it for the sole reason that he was tired of life in Mexico. In Mexico we lived in apartments where we knew almost everyone there, very community like. My mom and dad sold fruit in a tiangis (farmers market) and did well. I loved going to school and everything was cool for me and my two sisters at the time. Then all of my moms family started migrating north and after stopping at our house, they made their way across.

And just like that, my dad crossed and worked in garment factories sending money to my mom and us who lived on my great grandmothers ranch for three months until we made the trek to cross. I was passed of as my cousin of the same age while my mom crossed with my 2 yr and 3 yr old sisters in the hills and out back. She said they crossed really cheap, round $250 to $300 for all three of them. And just like that, everything changed because my dad was bored. Pretty anti-climactic huh ? 18 years later and here we are.

I'm college bound, my two other sisters are working and living their lives and my youngest sister, the one who was born here, is here and going to school. She doesn't have muc ambition right now, even though she see's everything I'm doing and going to school. 18 years of going throug the Los Angeles Unified School system, moving all over and working to make ends meat. I wouldn't dream of changing any ofit because it has made me the person I am right now. Whether it's inspite of or because of those experiences. I'm thankful for my family, my friends who read this riffle ass tripe and support me in their own way. Things could always be worse and after talking to a woman who put her self through my jr college, UCLA and a Masters Degree while being undocumented and not having AB 540, I have it easy. I'm an anamoly plain and simple. Here's to the next 18.

Friday, November 20, 2009

The next chapter

I filled in the application and now it's a matter of time to see if I
get in or not. This is what I've been working on for the last five
years. Transfering to a university. Doing what no one else in my
family has done. I started school in fall 2005 and I'll be transfering
fall 2010. All this work is culminating as transition and growth are
going to take place.

Five years is a long time and I've grown tremendously as a person and
as an academic. I started part-time and I'm full time. I'm still not
sure where I'll get the money, but that isn't going to stop me. It's
all or nothing at this point. This is where I need to be. I've met so
many people that work there and friends there that picking CSUN wasn't
a hard choice.

It's a who's who of Chicano Studies and they have a great journalism
department as well. I don't know how long it'll take me to make it and
finish getting my B.A. Because once I get it, I'm going into graduate
school and getting a masters. I can do it because I believe in myself.
I believe in what I do. My purpose and cause. Generation 1.5. I have
support from friends and family and that helps. But I gotta take it
one step at time. First I get in, then I get my classes and then I'll
pay for it. And man, am I gonna pay.

~ con safos ~

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Talkin' bout that DREAM Act

My mom'z is one of my biggest motivators tambien and that's what I had
the opportunity to do today, motivate. I've mentioned in the past my
exploits talking to people and students about what the DREAM Act is
and AB 540 and each time I do it, it's different.

Today I talked to kids in a school that focuses on helping the
students get their high school diploma and career training in the
future of America, green jobs. Someone has to fix those solar panels
and other stuff like that right ? It's the future, today.

Anywho, there were only four kids and an advisor, but you know what ?
I had a blast talking to them. Ironic though that I took 90 talking
and for my speech class I gotta limit my speech on the DREAM Actto 10
min. Hmmm .... I explained legislation, support groups, blogging,
social/group support and my personal experiences to spice things up a
bit too.

It was cool because all the kids knew what I was talking about and
they weren't bored either. They paid attention to almost everything I
said. And you all know how I love attention :-) It was a great time
and even though there were only 4 kids, that's 4 more that know about
AB 540, the DREAM Act and they want to help pass it. That's 4 more

~ con safos ~

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


Ganas is what my parents tell me to give so I can reach success beyond
anyone else in my family.
Family that has worked fields and menial jobs all their lives to make
ends meat everyday.
Everyday the burden of living up to those expectations grows and gets
Heavier than any other load I have ever carried, yet I know of people
who carry the world on their shoulders.
Shoulders that need to rest, need to be massaged and need the burden
to be lifted.
Lifted from the ground, grown in the dirt and nurished by the sun.
Sun that shines and guides us, the people of the sun into the next
day, day after day.
Day that will end in harmony or agony because suffering is a part of
Life that is connected to everyone, one way or another, echandole ganas.

~ con safos ~


I'm helping a friend with a paper they're writing and these are some questions she asked.

1. How old were you when you arrived in the US?

~ I was seven years old. I had a cousin who was the same age as me, so my uncle and aunt told me that I needed to pretend to be him so we could get across. They had me memorize their names and answers to questions in case border patrol asked. I slept through the whole thing and when I woke up, I was in East L.A. the next day.

2. When did you find out you were undocumented?

~ I knew I was undocumented from day one because of the way I came in. Growing up and going to school, there was a stigma placed on the term “papeles” or papers, referring to having legal documentation that you are in the country legally. Through out school, I would always pretend to have papers and bluff my way out of conversations that inquired about my status. My parents also lectured my sisters and I to not let anyone know we don’t have papers, almost as if it was telling people we had a horrible disease. This went on through out my life.

3. Did you feel that college was an option for you when you were growing up?

~ There was a certain point in which I did because that’s what teachers tried to instill in kids. Go to college and be a doctor or something, always asking that general question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” It wasn’t until junior high and high school that I started to become more self-aware of what my possibilities were and what I was able to do, giving my situation. With out real support from my family or peers, I gave up on going to college because I didn’t think I was smart enough and because at the time, I didn’t know undocumented students could go to college.

4. Why didn't you go to college immediately after high school?

~ I went to four different high schools in four years, I didn’t care about my education beyond graduating and the school didn’t either. After high school I spent three years working with my family working a hot dog, fruit and shaved ice cart in various parts of L.A. until we found a spot in East L.A. Later on when I was working at a skateboard shop, through the encouragement of the owner, I decided to go back to school.

5. What would the DREAM Act do for you?

~ Change my life for the better. I would be able to legally work, drive, own property, pay taxes and have a better quality of life. Psychologically and emotionally I would be a happier person because I wouldn’t be dealing with personal issues of doubt and unworthiness. It would mean that going to a University is achievable because I would have a good job that would allow me to pay for my tuition and maybe take loans out. I would qualify for scholarships, internships and academic programs that will help me in my career. It would mean that I would not be hiding and suffering in the shadows because of what my status means. No more living in fear of being deported and having some normalcy in my life.

6. What is your major in school, and what is your panned profession? Why?

~ I’m a Journalism major at East Los Angeles College. Might minor or double major in Chicano Studies if things go well. For the moment I have no real long-term goals beyond becoming a freelance writer and/or getting a paid position at a newspaper or magazine. Blogging online has gotten me a reputation for bringing local news to my community and I hope to be able to make a living off it in the future. The success I have found online is because of my passion for writing. That and I’m a big loud mouth who like to know everything and tell everyone everything, which makes me a perfect journalist. I have an easier time writing than in any other medium. I love the rush of getting a story, talking to people; writing it and having people form opinions of it. I have come to a balanced point in my writing and life in which I let my writing take me places, rather than me taking it somewhere else.

7. Where would you like to be, or where in life do you imagine you would be were it not for your undocumented status? What opportunities do you feel you have missed as a result of your situation?

~ It’s a double edge sword that hangs over your head like a damocles dagger. One the one hand, I have developed personally beyond anything I could ever imagine. My situation has given me a view on life than not many people get to see and in turn, humbled me and made me a stronger individual. I have perseverance and ambitions that are fueled by my experiences and I am able to offer a different perspective on everyday happenings from my point of view. I would not be the person I am if it wasn’t for being undocumented. At the same time it is a burden that can cripple and break a person down if they do not have the proper support system. Being undocumented means that you live in the shadows and that has a lot of psychological ramifications that range from severe depression to apathy. Given the clarity I have found throughout the years, I am happy to be where I am and the situation I have placed myself in. Ideally I would like to have legal status, but until that happens, I make the best of the situation. I can’t picture myself doing anything else beyond what I’m doing now. Even though I have missed out on opportunities to travel and have a “normal” life, I have gained much more than I have lost through the people I have met, events I have attended and the infinite possibilities still available in the near future.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Role reversal

Rejection is nothing more than life telling u, "I know u wanna go
there, but that's not where you need to b."

It's funny how things work sometimes. Earlier today I texted those
words to a friend after she said she had a fear of rejection. In
particular to her applying to graduate school and getting rejected.
Ever notice how we can help other easier than we can help our selves ?
It's .... Interesting to say the least.

Another friend, the one I use to live with, told me today that his
family is hurting and struggling to get by. They can't affornd to pay
rent a d they're getting despirate. His family isn't undocumented like
mine. They're older and passed that age of working. They don't speak
any English and have no work skills of any kind. With 5 people living
in a small, two bed room house, things are tight to say the least.

I thought about what they go through and my parents popped into my
head. They both the same. No English and almost no work skills, beyond
making their own work. I.E. My mom selling her tamales and my dad
getting work where ever he can. Yet, they manage and we are better off
than my friends family. I really don't know what to make of things
really. They have papers and acres to things we do t have like
services and jobs. Yet, my parents are better off than they are.

Even my friend, who makes really good $$, strugles even though he
lives at home and suppportd his family. His job allows him to do that
and then some, yet I let him borrow money so he can pay a bill.
Although at this point I owe them that and more. It's easy to say that
things are different because of specific details, but in the end it
comes down to family. I just find it odd that a family with resources
to everything we don't have can't make it in this day and age. I know
things get hard, but how can people let it get to that you know.

Another thing that's been bugging me is gender roles. Basically it
goes like, "you are a male and therefore you need to have this and be
this way. You are a female and therefore you need to be this way and
and have this." Yet, as I mentioned this to someone else, I find
myself on the opposite end of the field.

Part of the reasons, not the main mind you, that things didn't work
with the last relationship was because of the reversal of roles. I'm
not a man because I live at home, don't make money, don't have a
college degree (yet) and other things that of that nature that would
constitute my masculinity. My words here. Because I'm not "this way"
things don't work.

So, I find myself the odd man out here being cut by a double edge
sword. My experiences being undocumented have taught me lessons that
take years to learn and I have reached a point in my life in where I
know what I want and what I am looking for. Yet, being undocumented
bars me from reaching those goals and accessing my full potential. And
so the problem is fused with the answer.

Basically, And not to be cocky or boastful or anything here :-P, I
have become self aware of the fact that I am the kind of guy that
women look for. Sensative, caring, romantic, thoughtful, blah, blah,
blah etc. yet .... all I lack is the economic support to back it up.
Interesting no ?

People judge you by how much you have and can give. It's human nature.
To seek out the best partner to mate with and reproduce. To seek out
the best provider for yiu and your would be children. It's primal
really. At this point in my life, I'm the monkey in the back eating
bugers while the alpha male empregnates and beats all the other female
monkeys. I have come to a conclusion, people are shallow not matter
how much education they have or how much they think they've unlearned
that bull shit.

So my question to myself now is do I find the middle ground ? Do I
make an effort to have extra $$ to take a date out and not go broke ?
Wear clothes that are a little nicer and make me look a little nicer ?
Do I forget/ignore my writing and community services and focus on just
getting $$, a place of my own, a car and papers while I'm at it ?

There inlays the problem. I'm the way I am because I don't strive or
want those things, yet I need them to be happy, supposably, and to
attract a partner. Hmmm .... To be alone and happy with my life or two
slave away for things and end my lonelyness. Quite the dilly of a
pickle yes ? Well the answer is simple, I need papers. That is all.

~ con safos ~

Saturday, November 14, 2009

On health care

I don't have any. Surprised !?! Well you shouldn't be. I wrote about
this issue somewhere sometime ago, way before anyone was reading my
rants so I'd figured I'd give it another shot since I fell face first
from my skateboard. I fell on my knee, this was a week ago now, and it
still isn't right. Nothing critical, just ackward pain, like it's numb
and sore.

So health care. When I was a kid my mom relied on free clinics that
gave innaculations that allowed me to go to public school. The same
for my sisters. In the 17 years I have been in my adoptive home, I
have only been to the hospital once, when I popped my ear drum. Stupid
teLly cause I laid down with a cotton swab in my ear. When they were
fixing it, it took five guys to hold me down and I screamed like a
banshee. Brutal.

Those free/low cost clinics were as close as I got to any health care.
I haven't been to a dentist or seen a doctor. At this point Im scared
of going because of everything that they'll find wrong with me. My
parents didn't have time to worry about our health trying to make a
living and what not. Come to think of it, it's a miracle I'm somewhat
healthy considering the circumstansens. Health insurance is outta the
question until I can afford it by working, which I can't do legaly.

So if I got sick really bad or needed any other type of medical
attention, I would be screwed. One time my mom'z cut her hand pretty
bad and the hospital wouldn't take her in unless my dad gave them a
credit card. So he came back to the house to get while she almost bled
out. Putos. If I were to get hurt, the medical bills would kill me so,
like everyone else I take home remedies.

A sobadora (massage specialist) fixed a really bad ankle twist I gave
myself riding a dirt bike. I was down for two weeks and and even now,
that ankle has a calcium deposit. But can you imagine what people with
degenerative diseases have to deal with being undocumented and broke
and needing daily medial treatment !? It's a horror I would never wish
on my worst enemy. But they get by. The only upside to this is that
when you are undocumented, you don't do anything fun because of the
fear of getting hurt. Come to think of it, that's not a good thing.
There is no good side to this dilema. It's just another side of the
billion sided dice that is the life of undocumented people.
~ con safos ~

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Look at what I made in photo class

Flying Ship

In times of hardship

in times of sadness

there's a place the traveler can let his mind return to.....home.

I still don't know what kind of past the traveller abandoned when he left his home behind.

I still do't know what kind of sorrow he bears

but the traveller can keep walking foward because he has something which sustains him.

A place which accepts him.

He can walk foward step by careful step.

Originally posted on myspace on July 22, 2006

Monday, November 09, 2009

Letter from Acosta

The following is a letter Oscar de la Costa wrote to his wife, Betty


I am a rotten son-of-a-bitch. Now what shall I do ? I'm miserable,
but, what shall I do ? Hoe could I try when I didn't know what to try
or work at ? Please belive me. I will try to be more serious. I know
that you are the best woman that I have ever known. You are, above
all, loyal, and you are what the Mexicans call "buena persona," that
is a good, kind, considerate person.

There have been certain things which you have exhibited that displease
me, but, holy smoke, not enough to make me do and act the way in which
I did. Basically, the problem or te reason for the conflict lies
within me. But so help me, I don't know what to do. Please forgive me
for being a sick bastard. Maybe I'll go to a neurotic psychiatrist.
Maybe ?

Your husband,

Oct. 24 1957

~ con safos ~

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Day by day

I was talking to the security gaurd at work today and i found myself
using the words, "yeah. Me and my ex-girlfriend..." Took me by
surprise because I found myself saying words I never wanted to use
again, unless talking about PREVIOUS ex-girlfriends who can't seem to
grow up. Our talk was about how the gaurd is trying to liven things up
with his wife of 17 years and mother of three kids. Seems parenthood
got the better of both of them and when I started telling him about
all the things I know about and go to, he looked to me as if I was
saving his day.

The transitions both in the begining and in the end of any
relationship are inevitably ackward and/or painful. Course I don't
have to point that out to annyone reading this. We've all been there
once or twice. It's a universal feeling really. Everyone can relate to
feelings of rejection and solitude. Up and down, back and forth.
Thinking about what if this, what if that. If only I did this or that.
If only I was like this or like that. Or in my case, because I'm like
this .....

The reasons don't matter. It's all relative in the end. Course that
doesn't mean the thoughts are not there. Of course they're there !!!
They crepted in there on my walk home. Yet, when I got home they
subsided. It's like, when I saw my mom's making tamales and sis
watching tv, it all went away. That deep feeling in my chest that made
me feel as if there was a gaping hole in there. FYI I was born with a
holding my heart.

It's funny how when in these instances of deep thought I become all
smart and coherent. Total opposite of me a few years ago wheni would
punch walls till my knukles bled. I'm proud of myself in those
instances. I have made progress. The only hard part is detaching the
lines I make up to things happening like this to me not having papers.
That is the hardest part. To see beyond the limitations that hold me
back to certain extents. Would things have been better if I did have
papeles? Of course they would but that's beside the point.

The trick with me is that i work backwards in the sense that as a
reporter, I'm meeting the people that will help me and going to places
that will encourage me. I've been told that I work backwards a few
times and that's why things are like this. I work only enough to have
cash. My focus is devoted to school and my reporting endevores on
blogs and in papers I write for. Things I wouldn't be able to do
because I'd be working too much to support myself.

So what that I still live at home. I still wear clothes from YEARS ago
and so what. I'm not here to impress you or anyone. I always get to.
You gotta be THIS way to fit in. I don't. Pfft screw you. During my
walk I thought that if I were to stop writing completely in terms of
blogging and in newspaper, I would haveTONS of time to work, get my
own place, finish school faster and be able to stand on my own two
feet. Well that's not me. I live to write about what's happening in my
community, pedejadas in my head and how I see the world. It's gotten
me this far and if I keep getting better at it, it'll get me farther
than I can ever hope. None of it is a waste of time because my time is
for helping where I can. The one thing that I do knowis that no matter
where I end up and where the wind takes me, I haveno regrets. For tis
better to have loved and lost, that to have never loved at all.

~ con safos ~

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Second thoughts

It's funny how the days events connect sometimes. I read the story "Finger Dance" in the book, The Republic of East L.A. by Luis Rodriguez and it hit a soft spot. It's a short story about a family enduring the transition of their father/husband making the transition into the other life after he gets stomach cancer. Sorry for spoiling, but pick up the book anyway and read it. So here is where I make the connections to that story. In the past I've written about my father in a not so positive light and if you have stressed relations with your father or family, you know how it is and you ave an understanding of where I come from.

Still, that doesn't excuse it what I wrote, even though that's what I think and this blog is a sort of "safe" zone for that stuff. Cause you know a blog on the internet is the best place to tell secretes :-P I digress from my point, which is that maybe I'm too caught up in my own shit to cut the old man some slack you know ? It's like this. Friends have been loosing family members this year and even though I wish I could say something to make things better, I can't. No one can really. You just support them anyway you can and be there for them. The thing is though.... that story hit close to home because of the circumstances of it and a friend who went through the same thing. It's only when something hits that close that we pay attention no ?

So from there it kept getting more and more intimate, as if Rodriguez took that part of my life and made me live through that, because it's a possibility. Not only that, but Dia de los Muertos and a full moon can make anyone a little extra emotional. So fast forward to me eating at home today after I got home from school and I see some grammer excersises on the table thinking they're my sisters for an assestment test, but they're not hers. They're my dads. Turns out he's taking a class in the evenings to brush up on his English. A man who never made it past elementry school because he had to work to survive. Never had an opportunity to get an education. He's borderline illiterate but he's there.

Took me by surprise really, especially as he made his way out the door with his jacket and homework in his hands. Thinking about that and the story I read hit that soft spot. Specially since a part of the story put focus on the strained relationship the kids had with the dad and how they never really showed affection to each other, weren't there and all that mumbo jumbo. My life mirrors that so I got to thinking and thinking usually leads to writing and here I am. It's selfish to write some of the things I write knowing other people are enduring worse, but I'm only human. We learn as we go and I learned that I gotta be more self aware of what really is important in my life rather than the drama happening around me. It's hard to do that on a daily basis, but we can't forget about it.

Now I can't help wonder about my mom's and what she may be thinking about. She's the same, never went to school because of family needs and what have you. I stop and ponder on whether I should be doing more to help them in that aspect, but I have enough to worry about as it is. Sound selfish but it's the truth. How can tey expect me to make it when I still gotta deal with them to the point that it holds me back. Nah man. I'll do what I can but it ends with me. These cultural traditions of working for nothing, oppressing women and all that Mexican BS end with me. They're getting reshapped and adapted into more positive traditions rather than negative ones. I'm the first in my family to get this far, c
~ con safos ~

Sunday, November 01, 2009


It'll get ya. Time and time again I have moments in life that seem
like I'm getting picked on, like everything bad only happens to me and
only me. At this moment I'm nursing both a cold and a broken heart.
Yet, as I was taking a much needed walk I realized that I'm not a
stranger to this road. Yes I too have broken a heart and guess what ?
It sucks. It sucks ass. Hard. In case you're wondering that last post
was about it.

This realization doesn't make things any easier of course. Oddly
enough the circumstances in both instances are quite similar just on
the opposite ends. It kinda makes me feel like apologizing to that X,
BUT I have runned into her at school and she's the same. So yeah ....
Sorry Love & Hate in L.A. I won't be getting married anytime soon.
Thatnks for the support and enthusiasm though :-) Speaking of karma, I
miss "My name is Earl." Jason Lee is a great actor and I related a lot
to him on that show.

So what am I going to do with myself now you ask ? Well I gotta get
over this cold as soon as I can because there's work to be done. This
person entered my life spontaneously and totally unexpected and now
she is no longer there. I have realized a few things these past couple
of months not just about myself, but those around me. A long time ago
I decided that I would leave behind people who didn't bring anything
positive in my life. Even if this means that I spend my days alone. In
time, things will get better and I will remold my relationship with
her because she brings positive energy into my life and I in hers. We
all have are faults, but it's nothing that can't be over comed in
time. I myself keep growing and learning. This experience is no
different. It's only a matter of time.

~ con safos ~

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Ahh you're back ....

.... to that place you know so well. Its been a long time since you've
been here for the reasons you are here now. At this point I don't need
to explain the proper procedures to help you get through this. In
fact, yes.... I can see in your eyes that you've matured since the
last time. (Chuckles) haha not only that but I can see that you've
gained some more girth to your body mass. It's ok my friend, the good
life has a few set backs.

I won't ask for the details of your return friend. I know you want to
respect the other party and even though your heart and mind are filled
with scorn, rage and blinding passion to punch a hole through the
wall, by the way.... You still haven't payed me back for that last
episode. You'd swear the place was Swiss cheese. Don't worry, I
already put it on your tab. (Gives a heart felt smile)

Tell me my friend.... You've had quite a few new adventures and
epphiphanies in your journey yes ? I can't wait for you to regail me
with those adventures. I also see that you have less hate in your
heart my friend. Yes.... That's it. Hahaha yes I can see you've gottan
away from the path of darkness it was leading you on. What's that you
say !? Speak up my young friend these ears aren't what they use to be.

School !? Ahh I can see that you are maturing. Yes school has played
an incrimental part in dealing with those anger issues of yours. Good
for you my friend. No sense going trough life angry at the things you
can't control. You do what you can with what you have. My hat goes off
to you. So now what my friend ? Where do you plan on going ? No, I
know you too well. Your going to let the winds take you where you need
to be right ? Hahaha of course I'm right. I can read you like a book.
In fact, it pains me to say this but I saw your return when the winds
were going berserk a few days ago. Like you, I too look to nature to
know when thins are going to change.

It's obvious that you are exausted friend, please let me fix you your
favorite meal. It will calm your spirits. I can tell by the bags on
your back and to your side that you are carrying a bigger burden thatn
when you first came.( Grabs hand and looks into eyes) I am proud of
you friend. Most people would have, being selfish, would have ignored
and left behind such weight. I know you are not alone in this burden
friend because even though these weights you carry hold a lot of
personal ties, you understand that you are a small part in what may
become one of the biggest movements in our life times. Keep strong my
friend, the road is hard and even though you are here again, use this
time to reflect and to continue growing. Never ever stop growing and
holding yourself back.

(Looks to wall) Ohh my hahaha, look at the time. It's getting late. Go
on my friend. I will help you carry your bags up the stairs.
Everything is as you left, but of course you are more than welcomed to
change things to feel more at home. Heart break is not easy to get
over, but from just looking into your eyes when you came through the
door, I could see that you have matured. It's only natural right
friend ? You are older and you have more of that peskie white hair.
Enough talk, let's get you settled and I'll fire up that stove eh ? I
look around the place, gaze at my hand for a moment and say, "Thank
you friend, but alas I won't be here that long. In fact, I'm leaving
at the break of light. As you can see.... there are matters bigger
than me that need my attention. I cannot dwell here like I did before.
There is work to be done. People to meet. Stories to write. Reading to
do. My heart aches at the moment yes, but it'll pass. Thank you for
the support friend. It will not be invaine."

~ con safos ~

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Change for the better

Things have been better than they have ever been, least compared t othe living situation I was in before. The simple things of having a bed again, being able to watch TV, which I havent done regularly in 2 years and not dealing with my friends family drama. I feel re-energized since I moved back. I'm still hella busy with school stuff, which is why the writing has slowed down here a bit, except that last post I wrote from my phone. Other than that, my mind hasn't had the chance to wonder off like it usually does about what I see. That I since I moved out of my friends house, I no longer see problems that I use to notice because his sisters would drop of their kids, 6 of them total, with grandma. My dad is doing what he can trying to start up another business and my mom is doing her thing with tamales. This morning I spent a few moments withher and someone reconized her. She's been gone almost 3 years and people still remember her and her food. They missed her is what one womansaid this morning. Things aren't perfect, they never will be, but we're all happy. Least happier than we were before.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Dilly of a pickle

I'll get to the point this time around, I'm depressed. I think I've
mentioned before how I have this cycle of depression. It's goes from
bliss to apathy and right about, I'm getting toward the bottom of the
barrel. You see, it's like this so far, school, the gf and moving in
back with my parental units have been going awesome. Everything was
going great, except just being exausted from school work and moving.

But as I've written before, all it takes is one pebble to cause a
murderous (sp ?) landslide that oblitirates everything good i have
going for me. Like anything else, this goes to back to the I don't
have papers cituation and resurects all of those feelings that get
shoved aside inorder for me to go about life normally. Whatever normal

Yes I feel like complete and udder shit. Crap. Dookie. Caca. Popo.
Feces. Manour. Just plain sad, mad and bad. Hypothetically speaking,
I'm looking down the barrel of a shotgun right now and my future is
dependent on making one single decision. Course this happens everyday
but not at this caliber. The decision I have to make involves me being
subject to deportion if I don't do anything about. It's as serious as
it gets at this point and this isn't a cituation I wanna call a bluff

This is gonna get worse before it gets before and it's gonna take a
toll on peeps around. That's why I isolate myself during these times.
This ain't no game and while I say things overconfidently and cockish
about people getting my back if I was in the deportation process and
seeking sanctuary at church, it's a real possibility that my ass is
grass. I can say details, but I gotta do something one way or another.
Not having papers sucks. It sucks all kinds of ass and balls.

I was talking to the gf about this and I told her that there has to be
someone willing to die and go down for the cause for the greater good
of everyone else. It takes one person to spur others, but at a
tremendous sacrifice to himself and his loved ones. I told her that
maybe I would have to make that kind of decision. That I would have to
step up and be a marter (sp ?) for the cause of undocumented students
like me. Do I have it in me to take it that far ? To sacrafice myself
for everyone else ? It's a possibility along with a billion others.
Only time will tell right ?

~ con safos ~

Friday, October 16, 2009


Did I spell that right ? It's 1 a.m. & lazy. A broken bottle of
tapatio. It's safe to say that the average Latin@ has enough of it in
them to last a couple of life times. Myself included :) No, as great
as bit sauce is, I am in one of those mOOds where I'm thinking too
much. How can i not, I'm moving back in with my parents. (FYI For the
last 2 yrs my family has been living in Utah. Due to the economic
crisis, they can no longer prosper over there and decided to move back
to L.A.)

It's funny when we go through things with a different set of eyes. My
parents moving is nothing new, they did it a lot when I was growing
up. Except that this time around, it just seems...more...repetitive.
You know how in the Matrix, Neo sees the matrix code in the real world
toward thre end of the movie and kills agent Smith ? Well that's kind
of how I see things NOW. I see the code that runs the world.

I have a ton of ideas and thoughts going through my brain, all having
to do with the parents moving back thing. I'll be at home, won't pay
rent, per say, be with my family and have a home. No longer will I
have to deal with the stuff I deal with at my friends house. God bless
them for helping me out but I don't wanna deal with their drama as well.

I'll be writing more about the move and thoughts that come up. Already
I see and realize things that I took for granted or may have over
looked. For starters my parents have WAY TOO MUCH crap to decorate the
house and make it pretty. Blah. I'll be sharing a room with my younger
sister as well. My other two sisters stayed behind in Utah. Yes life
shifting once again. I'll take on whatever comes our way, and when I
say "our," I meanme and my familia. I may have grievensas about them,
but sometimes we forget they're all we have in the end.

~ con safos ~