Sunday, May 31, 2009

IYEC Closing

Alas, all good things must come to an end and the conference is no
different. A lot of people learned important information today that
hopefully will empower them and pass the info along to others. I
myself had a great ol' time and was moved to see soo many people coming
to support.

Ohhhh and I neglected to mention that at the end they gave away three $300 scholarships to students in attendance. Two high school and one for Jr College. The cooler thing is that one the winners was with the group I attended the conference with. Sweet.

A HUGE BIG UPS to IDEAS for putting on this shin dig and for all of
the volunteers and allies that made it possible. They're work is not
in vain. Over the conference was great. Personally, they didn't teach
me anything new but I'm an exception. This was more beneficial for
other people and students barely learning about AB 540 and what's
going on. Things are chinging for the better to say the least. Fight
the power and Viva Mexico cabrones !!!!!

~ con safos ~

IYEC Workshop: $$$$$

When I was walking around school, i found this beheaded, inside out
squirl. Freaks. Anyway, this scholarship was again more helpful for
others than it was for me because I'm some plugged in to things. They
gave a quick history of AB 540 again and the differences in $$ for the
different colleges. Parents were in there and they got the most
information from all the workshops. They explained information about
the ITIN and how private schools sometimes give full rides to
students. The ITIN can also be used on some scholarships when you ask
them about it first.

They talked about husstling and getting sponcership from local
businesses and friends. They gave info for organizations that give
students scholarships and of course more networking. One presenter
explained how she made a resume and went business to business asking
people for contributions and sponcership. Another made stock of
herself and had people literally invest in her. Selling food was also
a great idea that was pushed.
~ con safos ~

IYEC Workshops & Food

So after hearing some powerful and EMPOWERING speeches it was time to get to the needy, gritty. Workshops. There are eight in total giving information about the DREAM Act, helping parents help their kids, financial aid, networking, staring support groups, a lawyer answering questions about immigration and even media training. I ended up at a workshop for jr college students transfering to a university.

Personally, I didn't learn anything new in terms of what I'm doing, but it helped inform other students there. IDEAS members hosted the workshops and brought a great personal touch by sharing their experiences. So here's a quick run down.
• networking with class mates and friends
• knowing what resources are available to you at your school and take advantage of them.
• borrow and be creative on your books. Make copies. Do what you have to and save $$$$
• expect a splash of cold water to the face when you get into a uni. Not only in terms of culture shock for some of us, but the wY classes are, the work required of you and balancing life at the same time.
• ignore all the stereotypes of going to a jr. college because we all take different roads. A jc is sometimes the best way to save $$$$ and be prepared for the changes.
• communicate with advisors and staff at schools and seeing if you can qualify for services like EOPS and fee waivers that the school can waive if they choose to.

The next workshop I'm going to is media training. I don't think they'll show me anything new, but it's still worth checking out. I also found out that they'll be screening the "An Unfinished Dream," which I am in !!!! Ohh and the meet balls were delish. Stay tuned folks. A fellow ab 540 blogger just joined me. She's scaring the little girl in front of her.

~ con safos ~

IYEC Workshop: Media training

Nancy did a great job of leading this workshop. Course it's no
surprise since we both come from ELAC. I attended this workshop
because it has my name written all over it. Media. I liked that Nancy
used humor and was interactive with everyone in the crowd. She gave a
nice break down of how students can answer questions for the media or
anyone who may take them by surprise and ask them about the DREAM Act.

She helped them develope good answers and more importantly helped them
know the importance of being informed. She focused on hot button
questions that try to blow the DREAM Act outta the water. So again,
nothing new for me, but it was informative to everyone else.

~ con safos ~

Immigrant Youth Empowerment Conference live

Well not necessarily LIVE per say, but I'll be posting from the IYEC
here @ UCLA. It started and thus far I had a tour of the campus and
the opening remarks are going on. History of the support group IDEAS @
UCLA, little history about the DREAM Act, pioneer Tam Tran and Kent
Wong empowering the crowd. I got word that more than 500 people
registered and the place is packed to say the least. It's quite a
sight too see soo many students and allies in one place working for
the same goal.
~ con safos ~

Friday, May 29, 2009

Don't judge a book by its cover

Something I am guilty of doing. Live and learn right ? Anywho, I saw
this sticker on my way to the bus stop today as I was leaving school.
It's good to see that people are challenging and getting people think
beyond what's infront of them. I'm not saying that the prez is lying
of anything like that. My personal understanding is that he is a black
man who came up through the heavely Anglo American system. He's from
that mind set like other politicians. People are putting too much hope
in him when they should be out there making things happen. Every
little bit countsin the end. We can't expect anyone else to help us if
we can't help ourselves.
~ con safos ~

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A good'ol time

Little know fact about me, I'm a huge wrestling fan. I don't deny it,
I embrace it. I think i've mentioned that my father use to be a
luchador back in mexico. That instilled a passion in me that is still
going strong these days. That's why I was screaming my head off
Tuesday when I went to go see Smackdown. I had the chance to see
Monday Night Raw too, but inwas at the BBQ instead.

I had a bomb as time and while the matches were so, so,but just being
there with fellow wrestling fans, yelling and being amazed by the show
made it all worth while. The only thing that could have made this
better was if I had taken my sister. Guess there's always a next time.
Ohh there were two cage matches, which we eh. But it was a CAGE MATCH.
In the words of The Nature Boy Rick Flair,
~ con safos ~

Friday, May 22, 2009

Internet at the library

I spent a few hours at the library catching up online and updating
things. I left when the library was closing and I noticed from te
corner of my eye that the girl in the gray vest was writing a blog
post. I remember when I was doing to the same. I didn't have a phone
with Internet capabilities or a lap top, so I would go to the public
library and do what I could within the one hour time limit.

I've come a long way from those days, but seeing that girl doing here
thing took me back. I also noticed how many of the kids there were
doing their hw because they don't have computers at home. Just not
having a computer at home puts kids in school at such a disadvantage.
I hate that that idiot Arnold wants to cut billions from education and
ammenities that help those in need. So far health insurance, welfare
and cal grants are looking to be cut back and eventually "terminated."
Fucking pendejo.
~ con safos ~

Meeting the vice president and Harverd endorses Dream Act

This has been quite a week for me and for Dream Act related news.

I was in the process of asking him "the question" when he stopped me mid-sentence. "The answer is YES," he stated. I responded by saying that I knew he was a supporter of the DREAM Act when he was a Senator and was well aware that Obama was a co-sponsor at one point, but that my question was more of a when and how."

Over in Boston, Harvard President Drew Gilpin Faust made it public that she supports the Dream Act. "I believe it is in our best interest to educate all students to their full potential - it vastly improves their lives and grows our communities and economy," she wrote in a letter to Senators Edward M. Kennedy and John F. Kerry and Representative Michael E. Capuano, thanking them for their support for the legislation. "This bill will help move us closer to this goal."

Theater and arts keep the doctor away

Today was another good day. I can't tell you how much I enjoyed myself today. A rare treat indeed. I spent the day with "messy Jane." We started the day off right with a delish desayuno at my fav rest in East Los. Then we headed to the LACMA to check out their new exhibit on the city of pompai.

Talk about being hedonistic. The the whole thing is dedicated to the art these romans had in their beach houses. Cesar, generals and politicians who wanted to get away from the stress of the city. It's funny cause the people seeing the exhibit, retired, older more middle class folk are todays version of those Romans. The top of the top.

That still doesn't take away from all of the beautiful art and sculptures found there. So after that I end up in stats class and after that I end up catching a preview for "Always and Forever" @ Casa 0101, again in East Los. It was freaking awesome. Quinceañeras, family traditions and Adan Sanchez all come together. Along with a few surprises along the way. It's rare that I enjoy myself so much. We'll see how long it last, so for now, I'll enjoy it while I can.
~ con safos ~

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Dream Team LA kicks ass

Guess what !? I joined Dream Team LA. What is it you ask ? It's a group of like minded people, based in Los Angeles getting together and starting to take advantage of all the resources out there and the people making things happen to pass immigration reform in the U.S. The first meeting was kick ass. To see everyone start planning, talking and getting pumped up about what is going to be a kick ass group. To sum it up, it was kick ass. I felt like I was joining the Avengers, Justice League of American etc. because we all come from different back grounds, but we have the same goal. I'll post more later. Time for mimis.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Comics, booze and Star Wars

You know it's rare that I go out. In the sense that going out means
having a few drinks, kicking back and taking pictures with storm
troopers and princess Lea look alikes. Normally I would spend Tuesday
nights at school arguing with people, but not anymore. I spent this
Tuesday night in Hollywood hanging out with storm troopers and Darth
Vader drinking red bull mixed with some blue bottle thing called sky.
It was a DVD release party for a movie and as soon as I heard that
there was free booze I was there.

Monday, May 18, 2009

New DREAM Act group starting up in L.A.

*The LA DREAM Team would: Collaborate and plan actions supporting the DREAM Act. Keep organizations updated and support member organizations Be open to all individuals seeking to pass the DREAM Act. We seek the support and initiative of students, parents, teachers, counselors, community leaders and others who would like to help this cause.

So a friend of mine sent me campus progress weekly news letter and I watched their video about the DREAM Act
and the student who's speaking about it and why it's important. Nothing new right ? Well, earlier I was on the phone
with the famous Lizbeth Mateo. I was star struck for a moment there. We were talking about a meeting taking place
to start a new group aimed at recruiting not just students, but community members. The meeting is Wednesday, so if
anyone in Los Angeles wants info, email me and I'll send it your way. As we were talking I remembered how during
the May 1 marches, there were six different organizations marching when everyone could have just organized, put aside
their drama and planned something bigger. It's the nature of things I guess. Even before the meeting started, someone
emailed her back telling her that the name of the group was already taken and that the group shouldn't be using that name.
Whatever you know ? It's just a name that can be easily changed at the meeting. But having local heads gather and plan things
out will definitely be good for business. I plan on getting heavily involved, least as much as I can so keep an eye out.

*The yet to be named group would: Collaborate and plan actions supporting the DREAM Act. Keep organizations updated and support member organizations Be open to all individuals seeking to pass the DREAM Act. We seek the support and initiative of students, parents, teachers, counselors, community leaders and others who would like to help this cause.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Breath of fresh air

"El Random Hero," we, as in my adviser, editor in chief and X girlfriend/managing editor, think it would be best if you didn't come in for the rest of the semester." And just like that 3 years of being on staff at my school newspaper ended. In those three years I have seen a lot of people come and go, three different EIC and a bunch of drama, that I had a major part in causing for you see, I talk back a lot. I say what I think, I'm truthful about it most of the time and the way I say things are abrasive and rude to say the least.

My personal habits, which have changed and grown as I have over the years, never got in the way of me being able to do what I do best, and that's work. When I first started, often my stories would get pushed to the front page because other writers dropped the ball and didn't turn in their work. Not only that, but the stories that got bumped were stories I caught on my own and wrote on my own. That's how I did things. I would take stories from my EIC and give them story ideas as well, or go out and find my own.

I wrote about a lot of different things happening at scchool, events, people and students. I was able to meet a lot of great people and networked extensively, which is paying offf in gold now that I'm taking my writing online and to other publications. I learned the ropes in Campus News and built a great foundation for my career as a reporter and I have my advisor to thank for that. Looking back through my old stories I can see my writing progressing and getting better each and every issue. One thing I never did while in the paper was think that I was better than anyone else. I always made it a point to keep myself in check because I knew that even though I can get work done, there's others out there doing better work than me and I still have a long way to go.
Since I don't have to worry about the newspaper anymore, I suddenly realize how much time I spent there. I find myself doing more things and handeling business in my other two classes since I don't have to worry about the paper. I really feel like I was freed and let loose even though part of me is gonna miss the grind. The thrill of putting the paper together and seeing the reaction on peoples faces when they read it. I still get all of that somewhere else, but at school it's different because we're the only ones giving them information about their school.

Good times but we all need move one eventually. Since I have always been on the paper, I haven't been takling other classes that I need for my general ed. so I can transfer and get my A.A. That and I had to start at remidial math and work my way back up because when I enrolled in school, I was three years outta high school and well, sloopy when it came down to math and me. Finishing up stats this semester will be a huge step forward as I already planned out my fall schedule and all the classes I signed up for are classes I have been looking forward to taking, specially speech.

My only regret about the paper was that I was passed up to prove that I could be the EIC repeadedly because my advisor and EIC's thought I would humiliate someone, make'em cry or do or say something stupid because I can't be serious all the time. Bullshit. As much as I joked around with everyone and goofed off, I know the differene between work and play, but because I never showed that I understood that I always got passed up.

I can be trusted with important stories and laying out pages, but I can't be trusted with a staff and tthe paper because I might do something dumb. Please. The only reason I ever did what i did was because I didn't agree with the management and maybe ignoring them, talking shit to them. *As I was writing this, an earthquake just hit So Cal, 4.7 And now back to my rant.* Where was I ? ohh yea the newspaper. Fuck'em I say. I'm done with their politics and the powers that be saying one thing and then acting another.

I have no regrets about enything I ever did in there and all the work I accomplished because it helped me get where I am right now. It'll be weird not being able to say that I'm a writer for the school newspaper any more or having a press pass, but I have another magazine in which i can say I'm associate editor and I'll have a press pass as soon as I make'em . Anyway, I think this post has gone on long enough and I'm done.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Fourth Annual Latin@ Educational Summit 2009

My ass hurts from sitting, but it was all worth it to be at the Fourth Annual Latin@ Educational Summit @ UCLA today. I tell ya to see soo many educators, students and advocates talking about the Latin@ educational pipe line, predominantly AB 540 students at the community and University level. The summit touched on different aspects of the pipe line starting from the K through 12 levels and how the problems start at the very beginning. To recap more or less, the presentation of K through 12 focused on the development of programs for students who speak English as a second language. The way the system is set up right now hinders students from not only learning, but from becoming fluent in English as well. Test are designed to test students knowledge, but are worded in such a way that some students can't make sense of them.

As a result of these critical issues and others, research and programs are being developed as we speak to help these kids and teachers dealing with these kind of kids in the school system and developing curriculum that will help them assimilate. This part of the summit kinda through me for a loop because I'm not familiar with it. None the less, the info presented was eye opening and helped put things into perspective because the high high school drop out rates are a result of students not being able to learn or grow while in the lower levels of the educational system.

The second half of the summit focused on my part of the educational pipe line, AB 540 students in community colleges and in universities. I wasn't told anything new, except that everyone was given hard facts and numbers about what we already now, community colleges are a key part in AB 540 students education and a stepping stone to the universities. It was great to see and hear that people in attendance wanted to know more about how to train school faculty and counselors in what AB 540 is because so many students get the wrong information, which can cost them. They also talked about the crucial part support groups play in helping students succeed and make through the pipe line. For that reason, more and more schools are starting to create and expand their services so AB 430 students won't have to worry about their status or any other stigmata that comes with it.

There was also a heavy focus on educational programs that help students with the transferring process, filling out applications and scholarships within the support group and safe zones found at the schools. I was taken that students from my college where there talking about the "Adelante" program, which is what I just described and the four students that came gave testimonials about what the program meant to them, how it helped them and how more schools need to have those type of programs at their schools. Members of IDEAS from UCLA did the samething and shared their experiences and the value of the support groups and the network over all. They all gave powerful testimonials that reassured why everyone was there at the summit and why we all do what we do, for the future. Not just ours, but for those who have yet to come.
So over all the summit was kick ass and I'm glad I went. As you can see from this picture, UCLA hooked it up with a baller' ass spread, that included free beer :-) For those of you that couldn't go, you didn't miss out on much because most of the stuff they talked about we already know. Except for the K through 12 info, I didn't learn anything new. They just backed up what we all now with hard data and numbers, which is crucial in making the long term changes in the system. The next one is on the 31 and it's the student one so sign up if you can go. I'll be there and getting up @ 6:30 to catch the bus and get my lazy ass over to UCLA.

P.S. I gave a shout out to all the online bloggers who've I've met and continue to do their part by just blogging and spreading the word. :-)

Thursday, May 14, 2009


It's intersting to be sitting here, hearing the names of students
getting their degrees and thinking a out what is yet to come. To see
all the families and friends cheering on their loved ones because they
have accomplished something amazing. Getting a higher education is key
to the future, that is true, but as I listen to those students talk
about the tradtitions they lived up to and learned while at an
institution of higher learning, I wonder what they gave up.

In order to gain, something of equal value must be lost. All of the
graduates are of Latino decent Nd it's inspiring to see more people of
color get to such great heights, one day I'll be among them, but at
what cost. I see things as an outsider because that's what I am, even
within my own community. It's interesting to see the dynamics of
graduating. I could sure go for a pepsi right about now. All I want is
a pepsi.

~ con safos ~

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The Pincher

Honestly, I should be paying more attention in my stats class right
now, but we're reviewing from the book and guess who didn't bring
theirs to class today ? Sigh... Since leaving the school paper I have
WAY more free time on my hands that I didn't think I had

Leaving the paper couldn't have come at a better time now because I
realized that I spent too much time there. We all get so comfertable
that we don't wanna leave the comfert zone we have. Kinda like waking
up early on a cold morning. That bed is your womb and you don't wanna
leave its comfort. I'm already looking at my fall schedule and things
are looking up to say the least.

Another thing I'm working on is getting outta my current living
situation because I've been at my friends house WAY too long tambien.
Not sure where I'll end up next but I'm sure I'll find something so I
can at the very least have a room of my own with my own space. Nit
having my own space is harshinv on my zen and I've had enough of that.
Turns out that my living situation is what was causing me soo much
drama that I passed that on to others. The good thing is I've realized
that. Gotta go back to class.
~ con safos ~

UCLA Educational Summit and Immigrant Youth Empowerment Conference

Err, maybe I should have blogged about this when I first got word of it, but I tend to make a note of it so I can remember later, which I don't and do something about it later on. So I'll be headed to UCLA this Friday for this forum. I already called off from work and I'm going to spend the entire day there talking to others about the cause, the future and everything else in between. You have to pre-register though. I got a turkey sandwich :-D Also there's going to be another event, more student focused at the end of the month and again, pre-registration is needed so sign up foo and I'll see you there. That is in the sense that we'll both be at the same even, but chances are you won't know who I am because you don't know what I look like. I'm sneaky like that.

2nd Annual Education Summit Critical Issues for Immigrant and Undocumented Students in the Latina@ Education Pipeline

Friday, May 15, 2009 @ UCLA Followed by a Reception

Pre-Summit Registration Is Required to Reserve a Seat —

Go to for more information and to register

The UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center (CSRC) and UC/ACCORD (UC All Campus Consortium on Research for Diversity) are pleased to announce the Fourth Annual UCLA Latina/o Education Summit. Each year this conference brings together scholars, educators, community representatives, policy makers, and students to discuss the critical issues facing Latina/o students at each segment of the education pipeline. Participants explore viable policy recommendations and initiatives that can improve educational opportunity and increase the number of Latina/o students who earn undergraduate and graduate degrees. This year the conference will focus on documented and undocumented immigrant Latina/o students.

Tentative Schedule

Critical Issues in K-12 Schools, Part I: Creating Opportunities for Quality Bilingual Education in California

Ms. Marta Hernandez

Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Continuous Improvement

Ventura County Office of Education

Mr. Raul Alarcon

Lead Teacher, Learning in Two Languages Program

Corinne A. Seeds University Elementary School

Critical Issues in K-12 Schools, Part II: Increasing College Awareness for High School Students

Dr. Kris Gutiérrez

Professor, Social Research Methodology

UCLA Graduate School of Education & Information Studies

Ms. Mayra Soriano


Bravo Medical Magnet School and Co-author of AB 540 Student Guide

Former UCLA Migrant Program Student Participants

Critical Issues in Postsecondary Education, Part I: California Assembly Bill 540

(AB 540) and the Community College as a Pathway to the University

Mr. Alfred Herrera, MPA

Director, Center for Community College Partnerships

Assistant Vice Provost for Academic Partnerships


Dr. Armida Ornelas

Professor, Political Science

East Los Angeles College

East Los Angeles College Students

Participants in the Adelante Freshman Transfer Program

Critical Issues in Postsecondary Education, Part II: AB 540 Students and California Four-year Universities

Dr. William Perez

Assistant Professor, Education

Claremont Graduate University

Dr. Patricia Perez

Assistant Professor, Chicana/o Studies

California State University, Fullerton

UCLA Students

Members of IDEAS (Improving Dreams, Equality, Access and Success)

Reception and Book Signings

Dr. Patricia Gándara, UCLA, and Dr. Frances Contreras, University of Washington

The Latino Education Crisis

UCLA Undergraduate Students

Underground Undergrads

Dr. Alejandra Rincon

Undocumented Immigrants and Higher Education: Si Se Puede!


To learn more about us, visit our website or email us. To subscribe to our newsletter, e-mail CSRC Newsletter and include in the body of your message the line (and nothing but the line) SUBSCRIBE CHICANO [first name, last name] (don't enter the brackets, just your name).


IDEAS at UCLA, Improving Dreams, Equality, Access and Success, was created in the fall of 2003 to provide a support network for undocumented students at UCLA. IDEAS at UCLA has grown into a full-fledged organization that runs a community service project to increase awareness of the AB540 law, manages fundraisers, awards scholarships to AB540 students, collaborates with similar organizations across the state, and provides a socially-conscious environment for students to engage in open dialogue concerning immigrant issues.

In 2001, the passage of the Assembly Bill 540 into California state law made higher education more accessible to undocumented students by allowing them to pay in-state tuition at California public colleges. Each year 65,000 undocumented students graduate from high schools in the United States with more than 25,000 graduating from California. Unfortunately only five to ten percent of these students pursue higher education. Many undocumented students often fail to apply to college due to their uncertainty about their rights. They erroneously fear that applying to college can get them deported or into legal trouble. Misinformation has led them to believe that college admittance requires proof of legal residency and therefore discourages them from applying. In addition, undocumented students often fail to pursue a college education due to their inability to legally work after they graduate and believe that a college degree is worthless.

These notions are wrong because access to higher education is possible. The ability for the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (D.R.E.A.M.) Act to pass has high hopes with the new governmental change. The D.R.E.A.M. Act would allow undocumented students in the United States to obtain a path toward legalization, and hence practice their college degrees. Therefore, as students, you must be prepared by being educated individuals and not lose hope.

The purpose of this letter is to cordially invite you to attend our:

Second Annual
Immigrant Youth Empowerment Conference
“Reaching Our DREAMs through ACTion 2009”
Ackerman Grand Ballroom
308 Westwood Plaza
Los Angeles, CA 90024
Sunday, May 31, 2009

The conference is a whole day event which will consist of different workshops that will provide information to benefit you as a student. We will train you on methods of lobbying, activism, and organizing efforts in order to advocate for your educational rights.

By attending our conference you will:
-Gain information and get updated on the AB540 and DREAM Act issues
-Meet different AB540 student organizations
-Take part in the DREAM Act campaign
-Be eligible for the first ever IYEC Scholarship

Please RSVP by MAY 15, 2009 by filling out an application at If you have any questions please email us at We look forward to seeing you at our conference.


IDEAS at UCLA/ AB-540 Project Directors

Sunday, May 10, 2009

La Virgen

La Virgen, mother to millions and a symbol of hope to all of them. For as long as I can remember, the Virgen has always had a place in my families home. I never knew what reasons other than my parents try to be Catholics and because we're Mexican. It was only until later on that I learned about how all immigrants pray to her to watch over them and their journey to this country. They all pay her respects and some put all of their hopes in her, hoping that she will bless them and get them through their difficult time.

I can still remember my mom teaching me how to persinarme, which hand to do it with, what to say and when to do it. I was baptized as a yougling and my parents put me in catholic school, but I never finished it. I never fully embraced any of it because my parents didn't stress it or enforce it. Now adays I see beyond the surface and know better, even though I still do things and pay my respects. Some things just go beyond traditions and ritual and take a life of their own.

I often find myself people watching when they go up to her, touch her image and bless themselves. They bring candles, light them, stand in front of her and whisper a prayer to watch over them, their families and all of their loved ones. I myself write things down, light it on fire to light another candle and let it burn itself out. I see the dynamics of things and how they're changing from one generation to another. I see moms taking pictures in front of her as their daughters use their digital cameras, while they themselves look on in wonder of what it really menas to pray to the Virgen. I see cholos still paying respect to her because even they know that there are things bigger than them. In the end, she looks over millions and those millions put everything they have in her because they need to. They need to know that someone is hearing their cries and giving them some hope that things will get better. That the future will bring bigger and greater things. She's a symboy of all of that and much more.


I'm writing this on the bus and trying not to get motion sickness so
here goes.

I just finished getting off the phone with my mom. I called because
it's mothers day and even I wouldn't be so cold that I wouldn't call
my mom just to say hi. We quickly catch up on what they're doing and
we get to talking about my youngest sister, wiggles. She's 16, home
grown in LA, a true LA Woman in every sense of the word and living in
the middle of no where Utah.

I was there and I left when I got the chance, but she can't. She has
to make do with living over there and going to school over there. I
remember the day we took her to her new school to sign her up. I cam
still remember the disticnt smell of a doctors office in the halls and
how nice the faculty and staff were. Hell, we met the priciple the
same day and he was a nice guy. Still, in the back of my mind I knew
where we were, what school my sister was going to be enrolled in and I
thought about how she's going to get a better education there than
here in LA.

Two years later and she's been going on and off from school because
she doesn't like it there. She doesn't like how the other kids look at
her, make faces and don't accept her for who she is, a Mexican
American. Somewhere in my mind I knew this could have been an issue
with her, but I put it off because I knew wiggles wouldn't let
something like that get to her, at the sametime I'm not there any more.

My 2nd youngest sister(20), loca for coco puffs has a sense of who she
is, what she's about and where she's from. If you met her, it'll be
like seeing what I would be like if inwas a girl. She picked up some
things from me and is coming into her own, she still has ways to go
but none the less she's not lost. Wiggles is another story.

From what my sis and mom told me, she doesn't know who she is yet and
having been up rooted from all of her friends here in LA got to her.
It's My fault for not being there and not being a better brother to
them, but what's done is done and now it's up to me to help her get
through this.

I need to talk to her and understand where she's at to know where to
go but I'm sure this is all going to end up with me explaining to her
who she really is and where she came from, an East Los Angeles
Chican@. There's no doubt in my mind about that because even though
she's getting older and coming into her own, specially at 16, she
needs guidance now more than ever.

When I came into my own and realized who I was, where I was from and
embraced it, everything started to make sense to me. It was like a
light went on and the shadows of the world disappeared. I'm going to
send them a few books and magazine articles I've written to help them
come into their own. Or at least figure who they really are. I feel
like I failed her for letting it get like this, but at least now I can
start making up for it.

~ con safos ~

Saturday, May 09, 2009


It's only now that I'm away from her that I realize how much she means to me and how much I appreciate everything she has ever done for me. From giving me life, showing me how to persinarme, how to write, hold a spoon, what hand to wear a watch on, take me to school on the handle bars of my bike to feeding my soul with her cooking. I owe more than I can ever repay to her. I love her and even though I've never said it to her, I think she knows it's there.

My family was never all emotional like that, to the point that we told each other how we felt, outside of rage and anger. I've realized that my parents are like that themselves because of their parents or lack there of. My dad was one of the youngest kids in the litter and ran away from home around 10 because his dad would beat the shit outta him for no reason and he would get kicked out of school. My mom was, I wanna say, abandoned by her mom and I've never once heard her say anything about her father. She was raised by her aunt and that's who she knows as her mom. Needless to say they carried on that luggage all their lives and never learned to cope with it.

I myself am expressive towards others and don't have their hang ups, but when it comes to them it just feels weird and outta place cause we never did any of that stuff. I see other familias and how they are with each other and I envy them to an extent. My parents may have never hugged me when I was a kid or be very affectionate, but they cared none the less and showed it in their own weird way. Even now, I struggle to call her up and wish her a happy B-day or mothers day because our conversations end rather quick. I as how things are going, tell her what I'm doing, what they're planning and we wish each other the best. Pretty short conversations. But I know somewhere in between we said what we really wanted to say. Even though it was buried somewhere in that conversation.

All in a days work

~ Note: the following text is what I originally wrote to go along with this post when I first wrote it, but for some reason it didn't get included when I made the post. So I'm putting it in and arranging the order of the pictures in the order that I originally took them. Now back to your regular scheduled programing."

Man am I sleepy right now. Seriously, going to sleep @ 3 am and waking up @ 7 am isn't good for business & business is good. So a word of warning, all of these pictures are out of order here on the post cause this is a phone post, but this is a break down of my day just because I can.

Thursday I spent the day spring cleaning because I have more free time on my hands. I went to stats class and got ready for that night. I went to a local bar, Eastside Luv to hear East Los Angeles veterans put strangers in check because they're calling places that aren't East LA, East LA and we can't have that. That would be the picture of Linda Gamboa's reflection off a mirror doing a haiku.

After that amazing event I ended up going, on a whim, to another bar in Downtown LA because my companion had friends at this bar. We get there, drink, meet up and dance. Even though I can't dance for lack squat, I had a blast. The picture of the buildings are of Downtown scrapers taken while we were at the patio kicking it old school. We then spent a few hours sitting in a car talking waiting for someone else to show up.

So I get a awake up call at 7 am to go pick the newest issue of Brooklyn & Boyle and man is it fan freakin' tastic. I get back to the house and make my way to the LACMA for a class field trip
for my Chicano studies class. I spent most of the day looking at pre-columbian art and some modern Mexican art. That would be the picture of the stacks of papers and the picture of the guy selling ballons and cotton candy and the dog with wheels and superman fighting a famous aztec poet.

So I come back from the trip and I'm at the office holding down the fort until we start delivering more copies of the paper around East los. One of the first stops was Teocintli. A kick ass store and gallery space that was having their reception for mothers day. They had Aztec dancers do their thing at sun down. That would be another picture.

From there we stopped by some other local spots and ended up at the Los Angeles National Park for the Souther winds pow, wow. We said hi to some familiar faces and got the hell outta there because I felt so unwelcomed there. I was being all nice handing people copies of the paper and I got a "NO.". I was pfft screw you guys then, I'm outta here. That would be the picture of the portapottie.

So there you have it. From 3 am to 1:30 am the next day. I'm glad I can still do this while I'm young, bit having to get up @ 6 am for work isn't going to make things any better. Sigh. All in a days work right !?

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

New Beginings

We all need them every now and then. I started mine a few days ago
after realizing somethings. We all get so caught up in our lives that
we accept the way things when in reallity, we should be striving for
more. It's that comfort that impeades growth in us and stops us from
moving on. Sometimes continuing and nurishing bad habits along the
way. Everyday is a new begining. Here's to tomorrow.
~ con safos ~

Monday, May 04, 2009


a mi familia. The way we always laughed at everything we said. The
jokes we made, everything. It's been going on two years now that I
left them to do my own thing and at first I loved and embraced my new
found freedom and independece. I came, I saw and I conquered in what I
did. Now I look back and realize that it's because of them and for
them that I've made it to where I'm at.

I miss my mom, my sisters and my dad, just a little though not as much
as my mom and sisters. I talked to my sister the other day and she
tells me that things haven't changed from the last time I talked to
them. It stopped snowing was the biggest improvement over all, but
everything is the same.

I stop and think how things would be better if I was living with them
again, laughing and loving them like never before, but I'm not sure
that'll happen anytime soon. Things happen for a reason and I don't
know when I'll be able to move back in with them or even live close
enough to see them everyday. I know that when that day comes I'll be
that much more appreciative and understanding of them. It's all a
matter of time.

~ con safos ~

Sunday, May 03, 2009

"Tomorrow is the shadow of yesterday"

First off, you gotta love the public library for not only having
valuable books with priceless information, but for having rastlin'
DVDs available for check out. Anyway things have been coming in Nd out
of retrospect as of late. Maybe it was brought on by me having gripa
and having fever dreams or something else, but none the less,
pondering I have been doing, yes. Well I wouldn't call it pondering,
more like deep, serious though about my life, how i treat those around
me, my actions and other things of that nature.

I wrote about it a few post ago and didn't go into details, nor do I
plan to. Sorry, these type of matters can't be put in the public eye
because you never know who's reading what you write. And because being
a drama queen and garnering attention is one of those things I need to
work on. Come to think of it, there's not real point in this post
either if I'm not going to give up juicy details about my ackward
social habbits.

This is striclty and "get the fuck outta my head and into words" post
about said things I've been analyzing and thinking about. Man do I
sound like a whiner sometimes. Initially I was going to write a bunch
of thank yous to people I need to thank, but I remembered than things
don't work that way.

The universe will provide for you if let it and stop worrying about
things. Everything will work out in the end. We don't really need the
things we think we need because if we did the universe would find a
way for us to get them Nd that's a lesson ibhave learned first hand.
All that's left is to give that same favor back to someone else and
continue the circle.

No I'm not drunk or high. I just found a way to say what I needed to
say without saying it. Do work son.
~ con safos ~