Monday, August 29, 2005

First Day of School

I go back to school tomorrow. I can't say I'm overly thrilled about it but I can't say I'm not excited. I've got homework assignments. I was half tempted to email Prof. Fed Cts and tell her she was "harshin' my mellow" when I got her assignment two weeks ago.
I've got to write a paper this semester. No really. I've really got to write this damn paper. You know me and papers. It should be a mighty struggle.
I was dinking around with my phone today and I learned the T9word texting deal. I could get the word ennui up. I'm gonna try intentionality later. Imagine the existential text messages I could send if this all works out. Then think of what these messages mean in the context of a Wittgenstein analysis. We all know the word "broom", but when texted out in T9 how do we know that we meant the object used to sweep floors that's over there in the corner? The corner, let alone the object is not apparent to the text message receiver. Woah. This is a waste of time worthy of a philosophical discussion.

Friday, August 19, 2005

There are stereotypes and then there are stereotypes

I was joking with Cindy awhile ago that there should be a Latino Graduate Students organization and we would wear T Shirts that said "Now I think I'm all bad". This is based off the joke by George Lopez that Latinos are never happy for anyone and instead of congratulation cards there should be "And now you think you're all bad" cards. I found this joke to be hilarious b/c if anyone in my family got too big of a head (My cousin Jr) there were always jokes to bring them down to earth.
It doesn't mean we're not proud when one of our cousins achieves, but when they achieve and think they did it on their own we can get a little snarky. My family is very community oriented. We all work hard and do everything we can for each other. No one in my family has ever done anything on their own. I like this. I think it keeps me real. One of the things I see a lot of wealthy people do is think they owe their success solely to their own efforts. They forget about their mom who helped them with homework or whatever. So when a cousin says "look at this award I won all by myself" I think a "So you think you're all bad now" is appropriate. When I graduate from law school I know it's b/c of a family network supporting me. I'm part of a group of people who are phenomenally successful and pushed and supported me. One person couldn't say all the novenas it took for me to pass Prop Trans.
There is one slight down side to this. I'm embarrassed to ever admit that I have done something right or deserve anything. I'm always just lucky to be around smart people and it rubbed off or I got a sprinkle of their talent.
This weekend I got invited to an event with a fairly important person in the legal community. It honestly wasn't b/c I deserved it, but b/c a friend intervened on my behalf. There's an argument to be made that the friend wouldn't have intervened if I didn't deserve it, but I'm not going to go and think I'm all bad or anything.
A friend invited me to a BBQ at the same time as this event and I emailed that I couldn't go b/c I was supposed to do this other thing with the VIP. He emails me back "Good Job! Someday you'll be wearing the black dress and we'll call you 'Your Honor'". I immediately shot back "I think I was just mistaken for catering staff, they need a Mexicano to wash dishes."
Generally my friend would have emailed me a joke back, maybe he would have offered to lend me his leaf blower. Instead he emails me that he was at a client's house the other day and the client thought that he and his supervising attorney, who is Lebanese and not Latino, were there to clean the house.
The self deprecating humor didn't seem that funny anymore and keeping my place seemed a lot harder. When Latinos move out into a culture that generally doesn't recognize the holistic contributions of the community there seems to be a greater chance that humility, or even false humility as in my case, can be mistake as incompetence. This has an impact on the way that affirmative action programs are viewed. What happens when a white person hears a couple of Latinos saying that they aren't so great or that they just got lucky in getting a job or a slot at a school? Won't the white person assume that the reason the Latinos got their slots was b/c of affirmative action and not b/c they were qualified. I'm almost certain that what won't occur to the white person is that the family of the Latino student would perceive him as ungrateful or arrogant if he acted like he deserved the slot and had no help from anyone else.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

File under...

Bad Ideas
I came across this via Fark. The first thought that enters my mind when I look at it is "Tortious!" Some kid is going to lose an eye. In the spirit of "you'll put your eye out" I pass it along.

Am I the Only One Who's Paying Attention?
This article in the New York Times discusses the MegaBrews difficulty in selling their product. Throughout the article they discuss packaging and marketing but never discuss flavor or quality. WTF! Am I the only one who realizes that it's hard to sell a bottle of crap when people want flavor? Doesn't the restaurateur’s comment sum it up? Bud sucks, regardless of the bottle. (I'm pretty sure I misspelled restaurateur)

Schizophrenic Howls That Deserve More Attention
Rudimentary Peni was one of the most interesting punk bands ever. They were on the same label as Conflict and Crass but much more creative and much less obviously political. I think that hurt them... That or the plain old being insane. The Disassembly Line has a nice post on them with lots of good downloads. If you don't have Cacophony I highly recommend buying it. It's an incredibly textured record that influenced punk, goth, industrial, electronica, and metal.

9 Miles to the Gallon and Two Troops a Day
This scares me. I might have mentioned this before but I've got two cousins and a good friend in Iraq right now. We have a duty to pay attention to every piece of news about Iraq as long as anyone's friend or family have the duty to serve in Iraq. There are families that are losing their son, daughter, father, mother, husband, or wife. We have no right to be fatigued. This article describes the most despicable aspect of the American people at this current point in history. I might only be saying that b/c I don't have a bike date with Lance Armstrong and don't lead a balanced life.

I Can't Believe It's Not Manteca
This article makes me happy. I might be able to buy proper tortillas again. I might be able to eat proper beans again. I might just get to eat proper outside of El Paso again. The Pope also asked that people hang more crucifixes in public buildings. Normally I'm against government having a religious display, but I have to admit this would make me more comfortable. If the DMV would only have pictures of saints being horrifically martyred I would feel like I'm at my abuelita's house.

Sing Me a Lullaby
I wonder if this is why I can drift to sleep better when a woman is singing than when a man is singing. I always assumed that it was b/c my mom always sang me lullabies when I was little. Maybe it's b/c I just record woman voices as harmony and don't strain to understand them as much. The not understanding woman's voices theory would make a lot of sense in other areas of my life as well.

Monday, August 08, 2005


I'm sorry, I accidently typed Loteria Chicano, instead of the proper Loteria Chicana. I apologize to Elena and it won't happen again.
I'm just kidding Cindy.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

One more thing

I'm going to bed after this. Seriously I've got to wake up tomorrow. I was browsing through myspace for local bands. I came across one that I kind of liked called The Bugs of Lighting. It's a little poppy, a little on the light side, but it's solid. So after listening to the songs I decided to look at the pictures. Whoah! I don't know if you recall me ever mentioning my crush on the cure girl, but there she is. Playing bass.

Wrathful Navel Gazing!

I’ve come to the conclusion that “Chicana, you wanna?” and “I spent all last night staring at your myspace profile, I think we could really connect.” are not good pick up lines. I’m considering the idea that pick up lines are in fact not good. I mean, if those lines don’t work, what line is going to?
I decided today that I do not like the new pope. I was reading this article and it bugged me. The church is supposed to be a moral institution, smack me with the naïve paddle now. The argument basically follows the line that A does something immoral. B reacts immorally. We will therefore not condemn A. That is stupid. The church should either condemn both for their separate immoral acts or shut the fuck up. This is the church of Augustine and Aquinas, yet the new pope is kicking out the reasoning of a U.S. Senator (cough John Kyl cough). The whole Harry Potter thing pissed me off to. I'm pretty sure I didn't become an atheist because of children's books. This pope sucks. I’m starting to wonder if Florida had a cardinal voting in the conclave.
Under the topic of racist things that bother me and I can’t keep biting my lip. This jackass in the Federal Society comments about how Mexico lacks the rule of law. It's on the second page...
Fine I'll quote it.
Recalling a trip through rural Mexico, Mr. Meyer spoke of the "Stone Age" living conditions there as an example of how people suffer "when they haven't had the rule of law."

The implication is that there is something wrong with Mexican Government, which no one is denying, and that problem is solely homegrown. No mention of the fact that any time the Mexican people tried to institute a rule of law the U.S. intervened, by maybe assassinating President Madera or sending the army in multiple times during the Wilson administration, b/c it ran counter to U.S. economic interests. Mexican citizen's are solely responsible for their suffering and not the Spanish, French, or U.S. at all.
Here’s an old article from the Washington Post about whether or not Latinos will be a major unified political force soon. I think the guy makes a lot of good points that my experience has reinforced. My family in El Paso has very little in common with some rich Cubano family in Miami. The whole generational thing is really important too. Most Latinos are still too young to vote. Many Latinos are undereducated and undereducated people don’t vote. This is a really important fact considering the Latino high school dropout rate. It makes me kind of feel like I’m voting for more than myself, I’m a community representative.
This guy is proposing the dumbest immigration reform bill I’ve ever seen. I assume it’ll get bogged down in committee almost immediately when the Senate gets back from recess. It’s clear the guy has no concept of what’s going on in the U.S. immigration system. “Go back to Mexico and then apply for citizenship!” First the waiting list is like 14 years. No one is dumb enough to leave their family and good job to go back to the place they left b/c they couldn’t get a good job on the off chance that they may have the opportunity to wait 14 years to return to the U.S.
I think I’m done ranting now. Oh, Yeah! Loteria Chicano moved so visit her new site, bring a house warming gift.