I Wish You Would’ve Died

Imagine a white woman from Iowa teaching Spanish in a town that was one fourth Latino. Imagine coming into the classroom mid-year after a string of substitutes. On my first day, a student said, “You’re our 12th sub.  How long are you going to last?” It was a brand new middle school in Ramona in… Continue reading I Wish You Would’ve Died

The Newest Barbie Doll — Day of the Dead

If the newest Barbie doll has a Mexican theme and comes dressed as a Day of the Dead doll, it means that Mattel is paying attention to the changing U.S. demographics. It is almost the year 2020, and the country is becoming more Hispanic every year. Why is that? White Baby Boomers are dying faster… Continue reading The Newest Barbie Doll — Day of the Dead

Since You Asked, Latino or Hispanic?

Have you ever noticed when filling out a form for any government thing, like a driver’s license or a passport, that the form will ask you to check a box regarding your race?  If you haven’t read all the choices, please do so next time. There is a box for Hispanic and another box for… Continue reading Since You Asked, Latino or Hispanic?

Show Me the Numbers!

At a recent wedding rehearsal dinner, I sat across from a well-off, pension-receiving white guy who started a conversation about immigration. Sorry for him that he did not know he was sitting across from a Spanish teacher/book author who has studied and followed Hispanic cultures for most of my life. And I’m old. To sum… Continue reading Show Me the Numbers!

Dear Racist

Laurie had graduated college and had boomeranged back home to Seattle. She met a cute guy with horn-rimmed glasses. He invited her on a picnic at the beach. She said yes. “Have fun,” her mom said when Greg came to the house. Greg drove to a sandy spot with a view of the city. They… Continue reading Dear Racist

Worst Professor Ever

She taught the research class at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. I needed the course to earn my master’s degree. It would be easy. I’d written dozens of research papers at Iowa State. She said we could choose any topic. All we had to do was take a position, defend it with an intro,… Continue reading Worst Professor Ever

Jerky Jokester

Elena lived in the city. She went to the Cingular Wireless store to get a phone line. Fidel worked there and helped her get one set up. She filled out the paperwork and then changed her mind. He put the paperwork into the shredder but then asked her for her phone number. “If you want… Continue reading Jerky Jokester

Best T-shirts Ever

A student at Sonoma High School wants to collect enough t-shirts with college logos to give a class of first generation fifth graders. Why? So they will start thinking about going to college. This is a cool idea. A writer friend, who also happens to be Latina, shared the student’s post on her Facebook page.… Continue reading Best T-shirts Ever