Monday, May 13, 2013

My continued journey through life

A colleague of mine in Philadelphia, +Jessica Lawlor, recently published a blog post about her reflections from the real world. It had me thinking as well about how far we've come from college. I graduated from Temple University in January 2007 and have since accomplished many things; but there's still a lot to do. I have been blessed to have great family and friends that support me and vice versa.

So what has happened in the past six years:

And this is just the beginning. I've done a few speaking engagements to high school students and other groups and if there's one thing I always say, it's to just keep on doing their thing. Never take no for an answer because there's nothing you can't do. 

I did also however think about how many students are going straight into a Master's program as soon as they graduate from undergrad. The job market is super competitive but keep your heads's important. With more resources, networking and a support group, you are bound to find what you're looking for. It may take a while, but just keep trying. 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

What to do to piss off Latinos in America and everywhere else...

...You try to patent Dia de los Muertos. According to the Huffington Post article, "The entertainment giant filed trademark applications on May 1 for the phrase “Dia de los Muertos,” the subject of an upcoming animated film by Pixar studios, Mexican news site Animal Político reports." I didn't even know you could trademark something cultural. I'm assuming as large as Disney is they would have a team of experts behind them saying, "Cease and diciest!"

I don't need to go on and tell you why Dia de los Muertos is important, or maybe I should. But there was even a petition on and you know when things get on it gets series. While I am not Mexican I completely understand the cultural sensitivity behind the cause. Imagine how Mexicans (in Mexico) felt about this. Just another big top corporation attempting to take over one culture at a time. And why Dia de los Muertos you ask? That's because Mexico is pretty much taking over the U.S. one state at a time...seriously. According to the Pew Hispanic Center, "The size of the Mexican-origin population in the U.S. has risen dramatically over the past four decades—from 5.4 million in 1970 to a record 33.7 million in 2012." So why not capitalize on this money and make a move about it. Right?

This pretty much sums up our message to Disney:

An article on BeingLatino says, "Disney has withdrawn this petition, citing a name change for the film as the reason. That’s great news. Thanks for acknowledging all the criticism you received from potential viewers, and apologizing for your cultural insensitivity." In the end, the next time you attempt to trademark us, you should probably call your local Latino leader. This sort of reminds me of the festival celebrating Cuba yet had a Cinco de Mayo party. I guess they didn't call their local Latino leader either.

Monday, May 6, 2013

A strange restaurant experience

About a week or so ago I had dinner at an unnamed restaurant in Atlantic City. Let's start out by saying it is NOT located inside any of the casinos; that makes a difference. I was having dinner with a coworker and we both agreed to try pretty much everything in Atlantic City. Half way through the lunch a table with with four people started experiencing some troubles. These aren't restaurant troubles, but a woman started coughing over and over again. I'd like to point out that the group was most likely from the city (can't confirm) and they were also minorities (can't confirm but maybe Puerto Rican).

The cough was getting worse and no one seemed concerned. I don't even think a waitress went to see if she was okay. A few seconds later the woman coughing gets up to go outside but doesn't make it. A little throw-up comes out the mouth. I felt bad for her. Again, instead of restaurant personnel helping the group, you could tell they were annoyed. I was confused why the restaurant employees weren't doing anything. Then one of the waitresses mumbled, "I told her to go to the bathroom," in a clear tone.

After the group paid for their meal, the same waitress went around and apologized for the group. Confused. There's nothing to apologize for. She was sick and you didn't do anything to help her. Again I can't prove any type of prejudice but if the group was (como se dice) not white nor dress how they were, would the situation have changed?  The waitress even gave us free dessert. I didn't complain about that ;). I asked my coworker what her thoughts were and she definitely agreed.

Just had to get this off my chest.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

The National Museum of the American Latino's campaign contest winner

A few weeks ago the National Museum of the American Latino launched their 2nd Annual Campaign Design contest and today we have a winner! Ana Maria Villegas, whose design can be seen above, from Coral Springs, FL will be flying to Washington, D.C. for a special unveiling event. The winning design will be the featured image of FRIENDS' national campaign in 2013. Along with the trip to Washington, D.C. for an unveiling ceremony along with national exposure for their work, Ana will play an important role in the historic campaign to build a National American Latino Museum in our nation's capital.

"In this original pastel painting I portray the innocence and excitement of a Latino child being immersed within a new culture integrating Latino and American richness," said Ana. "The feathers represent the indigenous roots, as I found them in Native American and Aztec headdresses."

The new winner, although different from last year's winner, emphasizes Latinos in the U.S. I believe Ana really captured our soul and the addition of the American flag was probably key in the design.