Thursday, December 31, 2009

Expectations... (Happy New Year)

"Whatever we expect with confidence becomes our own self-fulfilling prophecy." - Brian Tracy

There is one final thing that I feel I need to adjust in my life. That would be expectations. I know that what I have come to expect of people over the last year and maybe even over the last decade has been to treat me with the same regard and reverence as I treat them. I have come to realize that this is an unrealistic expectation. I may be expecting too much of people.

Perhaps I am expecting too much of myself to think that having faith in people is the best way to go. Now, don't get what I am saying wrong. I am not becoming this anti social person that would rather be alone. The point I am trying to convey is that trust in people is something that needs to be earned and not given out freely. I think I have done that once too often.

On the other hand, I think that I have come to expect less of family than I really should. Because of my issues, I have come to expect the worse out of people that I am related to. My experiences has always led me to put up a wall when it comes to members of mi familia. There is something twisted about the fact that I may be able to trust or have faith in those who are not related to me rather than trust blood relatives.

My expectations of people simply need to change. Not everyone will have my true intentions at heart. 2010 will be a big year for me in terms of family and it is time that I start thinking about things differently. So far during this vacation, I have been very surprised about how family have dealt with me and my current situation. Where are I thought there would be judgment, there was acceptance. I realized that I should not be surprised when family accepts me.

When it comes down to it, I have to look out for myself now. I have some pretty awesome people in my life but I cannot expect things from anyone. I need to continue to pull myself up when things get rough. I would be lying if I said that I was not scared about what tomorrow will bring. Once I get back to Syracuse, my life becomes real again. There are certain actions and choices that need to taken and made. I am very scared, but it is time to man up.

Not only will it be a new year, but it is a start of a new decade. I plan on starting it with hope. I am throwing all my expectations out the window accept for one. I expect from myself to be a better man. I have my goals in place for 2010. I will be as aggressive as I need to be in order to meet my own expectation. Would I like help? Sure. Do I expect it? No. The only thing I need is for people to have enough faith in me as I have in myself.

Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Reflections of 200 blogs...

I have to give myself some credit here. I am not the type to toot my own horn, but as I look at the numbers, this is my 200th blog entry of the year. I cannot even count anything I have done 200 times in my life, much less what I may have done in one year. Being the type of person I am, I usually get bored with things that happen in repetition, so the ability to keep writing about something new impresses me.

I do continue to reflect on the past year as much as anyone else does and I have taken some time and effort to look back at some of my past blog entries. I have edited them for spelling mistakes and grammar. I would like to take this time to apologize for all of those mistakes because I do try my best to make my blog legible. Some people have told me I need an editor, but since I do not get paid to do this neither would the editor.

My thanks goes out to all those people who have supported me in my efforts. Those people who have been there during my darkest days and have heard my darkest thoughts. I feel that I have bared parts of my soul on here which has allowed most you to really see what is going on inside my head. While I have not written about every last detail of my life, I think I have shown enough for people to get an idea of where my life is headed. If my poetry is any indication of what is going on with me, then you will know that 2010 will indeed be another bumpy year. Of course I am not saying that is a bad thing.

I am really not sure that I will make 200 posts next year. I attribute all this writing to the beginning of the year when I was writing about superficial things. Now that I have found my niche, I will try to focus on the changes that I need to make for myself. There is no secret that I write better when I am emotional or even when I am in pain. In my opinion, that is when I really begin to throw some words together to match the thoughts I have running around.

I also know that I will be more aggressive with my life. I will get back to the running that I so fell in love with over the summer. I need to find that job so I can move out of Syracuse. My upcoming trip to the Dominican Republic is going to be something that will effect me. I know that there will a reconnect with family that I am eagerly awaiting. I am anticipating a rough year and I am willing to roll with it.

I plan on being more private with my social networking. As of the new year, I will be make my twitter private. I am not sure how long that will be, but it will be for as long as it has to be. I have already set my Facebook privacy settings where I think they need to be. Myspace will be done and gone (who really uses it?). I am not sure about this blog in terms of privacy, but I think that I will figure something out. I do intend on keeping up with writing because...that is what I do.

Many people ask me about my love life. Well, I intend of keeping that as private as possible. Some people will make assumptions and some people will talk about whatever they need to. This is area in my life that I have made huge mistakes in. All I can say is that I intend on just being me. I will clean up what I need do and I will be as honest as I possibly can. I am done with much of drama that is my life and will attempt to remain as positive as possible. Everything happens for a reason.

The image above is snapshot of my year in statues on Facebook. It is an accurate depiction of some of the things I have been thinking. I want to thank all you for being there for me and for commenting. I do read all comments and I welcome any feedback. Cheers!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Lessons Learned 3.0

I have done this list 2 times before in other versions of what was once a blog of mine. I decided to do this again. Every Year we should be looking back at some events in our lives to see what we learn from going into the next year. Some of this is parody and some it of is not. So here are the lessons I have learned:

Gmail is awesome... is blogging
Poetry is spontaneous, always carry a pen & paper
People do not get married to get a divorce
Micheal Jackson is irreplaceable
Driving from Florida to Syracuse is one day is possible
Virginia Highways suck...
...Pennsylvania is worse
Giving up soda is a big reason for the weight loss
Running is the most cathartic exercise
It is indeed possible to work 24 hours straight
People lie to themselves all the time
Mi Tia is every but as funny as my dad
Water is the drink from heaven
Syracuse cold toughens you up for any other NY cold there is
LATISM is a force to deal with
Forgive yourself first people, before you forgive others
Lady Gaga is for real
Muse is an awesome band
Alicia Keys...that is all.
Women are ruthless
Men are stupid
Love is complicated
Some people cant take a hint
Starbucks is $5 crack with non fat milk
The iPhone is best phone ever (hush to the BBM users)
I need a Mac
Everything happens for a reason
I miss NYC
The truth will always come out
Every story has 3 versions
Anything is possible
I need to write a book
Twitter saved my life...
Karma is a bitch

Friday, December 25, 2009

I Need New Memories

Another poem that I just wrote. I want to preface this by saying that I am still in a reflection phase. This was a rough year and I learning to deal with it through poetry. This is not meant to be depressing particularly on Christmas, but not everyone can be in a festive mood during the holidays.

I need to make new memories
ones that include smiling
and actual happiness
memories that can be
talked about pain free
without judgement
ever look at someone else's life?
wish that you could have done
things like that or
could have thought about having
the time of your life
New memories the will include
things never done before with
people never seen before
in a place never been
Old memories can be held on to
like weights tied to ankles
at the bottom of an ocean
where the water is clear
and the coral reefs are in sight
a beautiful backdrop filled with
memories that swim around like fish
but get harder to look at
when the realization
of suffocation
takes hold
This beautiful surrounding cannot hide
that old memories can kill
the once strong and the newly weak
if they hold on too long
to the anchors of the past
New memories will help me
see clearly and understand
that life can be what is seen
in books and on film
or perhaps dreams
can come true if you wish
upon a star?
but how far
am I willing to go
or do I need 35 candles to blow
or do I need to go
to a place where there is no snow
or maybe
just maybe
I will be able to cut the ropes
before my ankles bleed
before the fish feed
before I begin to drown
before I go further down
in the ocean that is my own past
I need new memories to have some air to gasp

Merry Christmas everyone!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas is Forgiving (or is it for giving)

Talking to family can be an enlightening experience if you really listen to what they have to say. I spent most of the day yesterday with my aunt and she has a way of being very blunt with what she says. Mi Tia Terry is very much like my father. There is no sugar coating anything and she says what comes to mind when it comes to her mind.

We spent the afternoon together. I am walking with her on the streets of Mt. Vernon. She is doing her errands and I came along. I bought her lunch and we just talked. The subject of Christmas came up. The one thing I know is that most older people do not view Christmas as this joyous event like some of us do. As a matter of fact, I am not sure the last time I felt in the Holiday Spirit. She asked me if I thought Christmas was for kids.

I had to really ponder this. I really do not believe that Christmas is just for kids. While I think that we are trained to buy big gifts for children, the holiday season is much more that. Sure I can go into how we need to think about those who are less fortunate than us because we should be thinking about that all the time. As I am explaining this to her, she just says: "Christmas is for giving". It made me stop for a moment. What I heard was, "Christmas is Forgiving".

I am not sure why that struck a chord with me. I know that I have been reflecting on so much that has happened this year. Forgiveness has always been on my mind. Not just the forgiveness of others but the forgiveness of myself. I also know that my aunt has other demons that she is dealing with. Family is never easy thing to handle and sometimes people rather go their separate ways than to maintain the family bond. While people take sides, no one ever realizes what that type of situation does to individual members of a family.

Maybe Christmas is Forgiving. The whole idea of this holiday was to think about and celebrate the birth of Christ. The one big lesson that he has tried to instill was the that we need to have that power to forgive. I think that people confuse forgiving with forgetting or perhaps in order to forgive you need to forget. I highly doubt that anyone of us can ever forget something that someone has been done to us.

I dunno. I am no prophet. I am no angel. I have done things that I will have to deal with for the rest of my life. But, I can say that the holidays seem to give us all this power to do things we would not normally do. We begin to miss those that have been absent from our lives....and even if you missed them before, you miss them more because, it is Christmas. The only bad thing about this holiday season is that is has to end. When January 1st rolls around and all the cocquito has been drank, we all return to the norm. We begin to remember our divisions.

The holidays are tough on many of us. It makes those who are lonely feel even more alone. So Christmas is very much for giving too. Time is a gift that is cheap and comes back to us. I will try to spend this holiday with as much family as I can. I will try to laugh as hard and eat as much (only run it off later) as I can.

Mi Tia is very wise and while I know that what she was talking about one thing, I took it to mean something else. I told myself that I will make sure that she is not alone this holiday and thus, I will not be alone.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Reflections of 2009

I know many people will talk about how fast this year has gone by. That is not the case with me. I think this year has gonna pretty slow. As I go reflect on this past year, I realize that we all think we know what life is supposed to be about. We all think that life is supposed to be certain way based on what society wants. Many times we do things that society believes to be right, but often times does not feel right ourselves.

I want to say that I feel that I am in a better place then I was when I in March. While, my life continues to be a series of roller coasters and challenges, I am doing my best to become the person I know I can be. I think that I have done my best to convey the emotional issues that I have had. I also think I have been very clear that I am not a victim of circumstance. This past year, the failure of my marriage was something I did not take lightly.

The current journey I am on has taken me to places I did not know existed in my mind. I have come to realize that I am a lot more emotional than I realized. I fight my emotions like most men do because I was brought up to believe that only women are supposed to be emotional. The only thing that was ok for a guy to do is be angry for whatever reason. Which is, in my opinion, when I get mad it is not a pretty sight.

I have also learned to deal with fear. Something along the way, clicked in my head that allowed me to deal with all my fears. I have quite a few of them. However, I cannot let my fear stop me from living my life. I think that fear is the number 1 reason people stop themselves from doing anything. I also think that fear makes us do things we ultimately do not want to do. I have heard the phrase that "Love makes us do dumb things", well fear makes us do incredibly stupid things. Facing fears is something that I have done this year and will continue to do next year.

I will continue to say that everyone in our lives serve a purpose. I consider myself lucky that I have met some pretty incredible people this year. I have reconnected with others as well that have made my journey less difficult. People can pop in and out life and that is the way things are. That does not means that the experiences from those brief encounters did not mean a thing. We all intersect in each other's lives in one way shape or from. So our presences in other's lives also means something to other people.

This year also seemed to be the year that many people I knew were either going through a break up or having a rough patch in their relationships. While I am not going to say that this is a good thing but, misery enjoys company. When people who are going through similar things get together and talk, the conversation become beneficial for all in involved. That is is why I say that we all serve a purpose in each other's lives.

Writing is something that has become very near and dear to me. It is one thing I can do that no one can take away from me. I know people will make fun of the spelling mistakes and tell me I should look into an editor but for the most part, I have gotten better. I will continue to get better. I know that my posting have slacked off. Many times is because I doing too much thinking and not enough writing. However, my urge to do poetry has made me see a different side to writing. I plan to do more of that in 2010.

Music has helped me along the way. I know I have not written about music as much as I would like because I am not trying to let this be a music fan page. I am not musically inclined but sometimes music speaks to me in ways that made me get through certain days. (that rhymes!)

My final reflection is that I am ok. Life has a funny way of making us pay for our mistakes, but it also has a way of picking us up and dusting us off. Some believe it is the power of God, others think it is the human will power. I think it is both. As I have mentioned this summer, I have found myself praying and I found myself having the will to not let anything get the best of me.

I think 2010 will be better...

Friday, December 18, 2009

My Christmas List

Christmas is coming up and of course there are thoughts of what could I possibly want for Christmas. As I have gotten older, the holiday season gets less and less important to me. I know that sounds bad, but it is true. I remember, as a kid, loving Christmas! The feeling in the air was just so unique. Maybe it was the mystique that was holiday season.

Now, the feeling is not the same. However, I am still a big kid of sorts. There are things that are on my wish list that I know I will not get, but I would like it all the same. If I was really into the holiday season, I could put up a tree and hope that Santa Claus will come on that fateful day with a bag full of presents. Of course, this will not happen.

If there was such a thing as an almighty force that would give us adults gifts, then there are a few things that I will wish for. I wont be corny enough to wish for world peace or something that we should all be praying for, but rather things that I would love to get. I will list five things that I want and will work on getting in 2010 (because I know that if I don't get one will). These are in no particular order:

1. A Macbook.

I was looking at these on Black Friday. Truly an amazing machine. These are pretty expensive, but I am tired of my PC. I need something sleek that will not piss me off when I am just trying to check my email.

2. A Kindle.

This is a big one for me. I like to actually buy books and have them in my library. However, I don't like to carry books with me for fear that I may leave it somewhere or that the cover will get messed up. I know that sounds pretty silly, but I think the kindle will put me in a better place for reading.

3. Cologne.

This may sound funny. But I am trying to be more of a cologne person. The problem is that I don't have one that is for me. I just wear whatever someone gives me as a gift and call it a day. I am in search of something that is me.

4. Shoes.

I am not talking about sneakers. I have never gone through a sneaker phase. Trust me, I tried but I would always get the cheap sneakers while my bother was rocking the Jordan's (I am not bitter). Between that and going to a catholic school that only allowed us to wear brown shoes, my indifference to footwear is apparent. Lately though, I am feeling the need to branch out and get a few pair of good looking shoes.

5. A Poetry Journal.

I need a notebook specifically for this. I am very particular about my notebooks. I need something that I can write in at any point in time. It would have to be smaller than an average notebook. It is becoming evident to me that I need to constantly write. I have poems in my head and a possible short story. I am old school in this way. I need to write them on paper.

This list was hard to think about after the first 2 items. Perhaps I need to think about my wants and needs more. Maybe we all should.

Friday, December 11, 2009


I keep saying
that you do not know
what it is like to walk
in my shoes
what it is like to lose
everything that you know
is all based on what you see
feelings and emotions all blinded
by a sense of guilt
tripping down the stairs
all because I don't care?
mind clouded by the storm
in the center a heart is torn
apart from what was once
considered to be the norm
is nothing but a woman scorn
but what about the other time
when there was a reason and a rhyme
when things were all about a lifetime
inside there is a little boy
asking, "where is mom?"
and all he can find is a single
tear drop
you have no idea what my
shoes have been through
how many steps I have taken
how much guilt must be shaken
to get away from past failures
to get moving to future en devours
in a world where money means
too much and heart means
too little, life is hard
since I am all heart
and my heart is worth more
than any dollar or any euro
but still you do know
not the shoes I walk through
but who can I talk to?
No one
can imagine the fall of family
the rise of a boy
who thought death
was better than life
because in comic books
death is never final
it is the beginning
of a new chapter
and what I am trying to capture
is my life in a bottle
called Normal.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Music Monday

Clearly I am taking this title from a trending topic on Twitter, but I wanted to expand a bit on some of the music I have been listening to. My musical tastes have been all over the place lately. I have found that in my 30's, I have not been pinned down to a particular genre of music. Just like in my real life, I tend to be all over the place when it comes to my musical tastes. So my heavy rotation consists of music from different types of artists.

First, let me just talk about Alicia Keys and how I cannot wait for her new album "The Element of Freedom". Something tells me I will be rocking this album for quite a while. The songs that I have heard from her seem to be right on point. Everything that I have been going through or feel seem to be coming out in her words. Thank goodness that her music came out when they did. If they came out earlier, I think this blog would be even more emotional unstable! Her album drops next week I will definitely be on that.

Let's talk about Lady Gaga. People have been giving me the side eye when I mention I like her music. They think that because she is so awkward with her shows and performances that she has not talent. That is far from the truth. Her voice is amazing and she plays the piano with a grace that you do not see much these days. Let's not forget the artists in the past who have looked socially awkward at one time or another but are legends now (i.e Prince and Madonna, too name a few). So, for those who think she is a freak, just know she is not going anywhere anytime soon.

Drake is growing on me. I know that may sound weird, but I feel a certain way about hip hop. I grew up with this music and I have a certain affinity to it. I do not like every artist. I am not a huge fan of Jay Z but I recognize that his album is crazy. I cannot get into 50cent although her is a great business man. What has impressed me about Drake is his flow on the mic. True hip hop people recognize flow when they hear it. It does not bother me he can sing. It actually relieve me because no one wants another Biz Markie singing "You got what I need".

In terms of my other genres, I think that Muse and Switchfoot are 2 amazing bands that have meanings in their songs that I really enjoy. To me that is what matters, meaning to each song. I want to also say the Frankie Negron is an amazing talent that seems to redefine Salsa music with every song he comes out it. I have seen his stage performance and he has that thing that makes people want to dance.

So with that said here is my heavy rotation list. Enjoy:
  1. Uprising - Muse
  2. Throw It In the Bag - Fabolous Feat. Drake
  3. Whatya Want From Me - Adam Lambert
  4. Bad Romance - Lady Gaga
  5. Try Sleeping With a Broken Heart - Alicia Keys
  6. Aditco A Tu Piel - Frankie Negron
  7. Hasta Bajo - Don Omar
  8. Mess of Me - Switchfoot
  9. Sexy Bitch - David Guetta Feat. Akon
  10. Bad Habits - Maxwell
  11. Empire State of Mind - Jay Z Feat. Alicia Keys
  12. I'm Going In - Drake Feat. Lil Wayne & Yong Jeezy
  13. Que Tengo Que Hacer - Omega
I have also started listening to Holiday Music...

Thursday, December 3, 2009

When it Rains...

I cannot believe it is December. The journey that I have started on this blog is almost a year old. I am quite impressed with myself that I have been able to keep this up for so long. The past 3 blogs I have had have all crashed and burned due to inactivity. I know I flirt with inactivity on this particular one, but sometimes I have nothing of value to say...or so I think.

I have made it to what seems to be the final lap of the year. Usually December represents a time for reflection of the past year and allows me to think about what I should be doing next year. While I while the process of reflection for me is yet to begin, I do know there are certain changes I need to make for myself in 2010. I do listen to what people tell me and with the desire to constantly improve myself I have come up with somethings that I think I will need to do next year.

The job search will intensify next month and since I have already been turned down twice, I think I need to makes some changes in the social media portion of my life. I am thinking of making all my interactions on Twitter private. I am thinking about making my Facebook profile private as well. While I will keep this blog open, I will make certain changes that will make it difficult to search my real name. All these changes are temporary but necessary. I do not need any potential employer to think I am emotionally unstable based on my writings and interactions. Personally, I do think I am, but perception is reality to many.

I have been mulling this over for the last week or so and I wasn't really sure what I was going to do until I had a dream. While I do not remember the full details of this dream, I do remember that it was raining very hard. I was outside in the rain for whatever and clearly I got soaked. When I woke up, I remember think that this was the first time I have ever remembered being in rain. I thought I would take some time to see what rain in my dream could mean. Thanks the good people at Dream Moods, I was able to come up with this: To dream that you get wet from the rain, indicates cleansing from your troubles and problems. Rain also symbolizes fertility and renewal.

I have said before that I have had an awakening of sorts over the last few weeks. So the idea of being cleansed makes sense. My stresses are not what they once were and I feel that I ready to do big things with myself. I am indeed looking for a renewal and I am very confident that I will achieve that.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Unfinished Poems

These are some poems that I started and haven't seemed to finished. I consider them like an unfinished drawing. Maybe I will finish if the moment is right:

Fighting Poetry!

I keep fighting this poetry shit
not that I do not like poems
I just don't like to read them
then I remember how I am brainwashed
to believe that poetry is about
17th century Elizabethan rhetoric
with sonnets and soliloquies
or birds and swallows
but when i hear real poetry
from real poets
it is about real things like
who spits and who swallows
how many poems does one
needs to write in order to
get labeled a poet?
do my fingers require a
sense of numbness that only
a person obtains when holding
the instrument that contains
a poet's blood
or does the ink need to run
out of the pen
or maybe finger nail imprints
on the pen is a requirement

Stay Down...

How does one gain strength
when deep down there is defeat
knowing that at times
you may fight a losing battle
where the odds are a million to one
how do you beat a formidable foe?
one that is ever changing & ever shifting
cannot stay in one place
cannot stay still
cannot give you a chance
to gain a grip on reality
the ever moving foe fights dirty
goes for the kill every chance it gets
you can block and deflect every blow
but sooner or later the knock out
punch will land and defeat will be imminent
How does one fight back?


I know what you think
that this poem is about you
because everything I do
could only be about you
I hate to break the news
or maybe I should leave some clues
everything is not about you
this poem is about me
the only person that
means anything in my life
the only one that makes
the decisions and mistakes

Sunday, November 29, 2009

From A to B

Something I have been thinking about for the past few weeks is how differently women think from men. I have read several blogs and checked out several tweets about how men are complicated. I realize that I am man when I am saying this but, men are not that hard to figure out. Granted that I am not a typical guy, but men are pretty simple. It call comes down to how we think.

Men think in a straight line. It is a simple as that. We think linearly. Our main concern all day and everyday is getting from point A to point B. Nothing else matters. Now, if we have to get from A to C then we know how to get there. Now, maybe this does not make sense, but if I tell you, for example, that men think about one thing, what does that mean? Getting laid? Well...that is thinking linearly.

Women think completely different. They think more circularly. They think more about getting from A to Z while trying not get caught or stuck on any of the letters in between. Women will always think about things that men will never think about or consider until there is a need for it. The problem is that women get frustrated with us men because we don't think the same way or have the same thought process.

Clearly I am generalizing with this because not all men and women fall into the same cookie cutter labels that society places on us. However, there is a point to be made that both genders think differently, which is why women have intuition and men don't. With all this being said, I have come to notice that when I think about this, the only people this has no bearing on is homosexuals.

The thing is that although I can sit here and say that women think a certain way or have a thought process that is not like men does not mean I have an understanding of them. On the contrary, I am still learning about how women work. But, I do notice that women do think about everything. Most may lie and say they do not, but they do. Some men don't even think about what they are doing an hour from now, unless the game is coming on..then that is a different story all together.

It is the linear thinking that get many of us into trouble. We never think of the little things unless we have to or unless we are trained to. This is not to say men cannot change, because they can. We are not built to think a certain way, but we can adapt to suit the needs of a woman. Of course, the key to all this is the willingness to do such a thing. If a man does not want to step outside his own world, then he wont. Some men who do this expect women to conform to what their way of thinking is, which is so 1950's.

The way a man can adapt to a woman's thinking is to understand himself. All men have shortcomings that women take notice of. A man needs to recognize these things and fix them. More importantly, the number one thing a man needs to do is listen. This is like a universal rule, if you can listen to your actually listen to her...u will solve so many problems that it is not even funny.

A man's linear thinking puts him in a situation that he feels he is right most of the time. Which any person who has been in a real relationship will say that is so not true. A woman will do thinks that make no sense to men. She may say one thing and do another. She might get upset about what men perceive to be something so small. All that is because we think our logic makes sense because all we are doing is thinking in a straight line that never veers off its course. Meanwhile, as men are thinking in their straight line...women are running circles around them.

This is not to say that women are always right. They get caught up in their own thoughts, obsessions, assumptions, and insecurities that sometimes the path from A to Z stops somewhere near M. A woman who is stuck is usually that person who cant get over a situation where it is a job, a man, or family. Once she is stuck then it is hard for her to get to the next letter or the next step because something is holding her back. She can always pretend to get to the next letter, but once she realizes she is stuck it is hard to move on. Now, men get stuck too, but because we think differently we can put blinders on and stay on the same path.

I know that what I am writing is fully of analogies and hidden meanings, but life is full of that. There is no way that I expect everyone to agree with what I am saying, but I just think that when it comes down to it women but more thought into life then men do. That is why we cannot figure each other out. Let me know what you think...

Friday, November 27, 2009

We All Have Scars

I wanted to write about this yesterday, but with it being Thanksgiving, it would not have been a subject that is, in my mind, appropriate. I realize that one of the topics that I have dealt with on this blog has been fate. Another topic has been forgiveness and those who have the power to do it. Clearly, I have my views on the subject matter and I do not expect everyone to agree with me. One person who does not agree with me on subject of forgiveness has been my father.

We can have long discussions on this topic and will end up agreeing to disagree. As everyone knows I believe you need to forgive people (and yourself) in order to move on with anything in your life. To me, it is about the ability to let go of the past. A good friend of mine quoted me a poem, so will still this quote from her: Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense. I am one to truly believe that there are things that you need to just let go of.

While having this debate with my dad, he brought up something interesting that I had not really thought about (he tends to do that). When bad things happen to people weather it is physically or emotionally, these "things" tend to leave it's mark. We all have scars on our bodies and on our hearts. The thing about physical scars is that those heal after time, but yet you can still see them and will always be reminded of how you got them. Emotional scars tend to work the same way. While you may not see them, they will always be there and will never be forgetton...but they do heal.

My dad is not one to believe that time heals old wounds and I wonder if he thinks people can change (I will have to ask him). He told me that he has been burned more times than he cares to remember and will never put himself in a situation where we will be burned again. I will say that my father is a good guy who has constantly given people the benefit of the doubt. However, too many people have taken advantage of that and he has become less trusting of people in general. Of course, it is only worse when family is a part of that equation. So, forgiveness is pointless in many cases to him. If you had the nerve to burn him once (and is some cases twice), he will never allow you to do that again. He has been scarred and will never forget that.

I look at things a little differently. I have a few scars on my body. I know how I got all of them, most of which I got because I was being careless. While I remember them, they do not effect me; I just know that I was young and stupid. My physical scars do not prevent me for taking risks however, I am not trying to get anymore scars so I know to be careful with any activity. One thing that I can say about all my scars was that I allowed them to heal. I rarely picked at them because it would only make things worse when it comes to the healing process.

With that being said, my emotional scars are a lot to bear. I have scars from childhood through high school. Those scares have effected me and yet, has given me the strength to be what I am now. I also have scars for the careless things I have done to myself and other people. What I have found is the forgiveness has helped me heal those wounds. Forgiving someone does not mean you are giving them a pass to scar you again, it just stops us from picking at old wounds.

Let me inject a little fate here. Everything and everyone has a purpose in our lives. Getting scarred by others is a part of life. We learn from them. Sometimes the people who scar us are the most are the ones we love the most. Those scars make us the people we are and since we never know what the future holds, we never know if a scar we received in the past was meant to happen in order for us to be strong in the future. I think we all need to be hurt so that we know how to love. I am referring to the story of the perfect heart.

Ever time I read that story I think about how we all have to fail before we can succeed. None of us are prefect and we really should not expect perfection from anyone else. The number one answer has always been to cut off those people who hurt us but, does that really solve the problem or does the put a bad aid on the wound? There are people and situations that we need to face and things that need to resolved because in reality, emotional scars are very hard to heal without a resolution of some kind.

We all have those people that we will never speak to again. I have a couple of people who are on that list. It is hard to forgive people. I know that. But, holding on to things from the past makes it difficult to move on. We are not in control of the future. So once again, let go of the wheel...

Monday, November 23, 2009

Monday Musing in NYC

5 days ago. That was the last time I have posted something on here. I have quietly promised myself that I would write an entry every day this week while I am in New York. Believe it or not I have a lot of time on my hands because it turns out that my aunt's house is being renovated. The living room, in particular, is being turned redone so in basic terms: I have no TV. Which is ok, I can deal.

I brought down my notebook so that I can write any poems that seem to come to mind more often than ever these days. I normally write them down on paper before I type them on here. But, in either case, I have some reflections to do regardless. Unless, my emotions pull me in a certain direction, I think I will focus on family this week. I think this will be sorta like a "dry run" for Christmas and a precursor to my eventual move in 2010.

People have been asking me what am I doing for Thanksgiving and I would answer that with the usual, "I don't know." However, I think that deep inside me I already know that I am going to see my mother. At this point, it only makes sense. I just don't know exactly what I am going to do yet, but I am sure I will figure it out.

As I write this, I already have another poem swirling in my head. I realize that I am becoming a person that I didn't foresee myself being. I feel kinetic in a sense. I get emotions and feelings built up inside of me and I feel the need to pour it on paper. I wonder why I could not do this before, but it seems to happen quite often now. So I am very glad I brought down my book. I just feel that my poems are too short, but at the same time I am not trying to write the Iliad or the Odyssey.

The job search is proving to be tough. Most of the positions that I see I am over qualified for. I could be the boss. But, I am not discouraged. I know that something will come up. I feel that I have people looking out for me as well. I will also be real and say that I have only put my foot in the water. I have not dove all the way in yet. I wanted to test the waters and see what is out there. I do have a plan to be very aggressive starting January 1. I have applied to a few places and we will see what happens. Gotta let Fate take the wheel.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Final Word on Fate?

I have a friend that will always say to me "Jesus take the wheel". This is a general expression that she says to express that we are no longer in the driver seat in certain situations. Control becomes absolutely pointless in the face of adversity and stress (i.e. drama). We are not in control of many of things that happen in our lives. We are not in control of our future. We are not in control of thoughts of other people and (I will just throw this in for good measure) we are not in control of the system of oppression that society has on us.

This where fate comes in. I will easily preach that everything happens for a reason and everyone has a role to play in our lives. The issue becomes we do not know the grand scheme of things. So for what we do not know is left up to chance or in better terms, it is left to fate.

How did I come with this? Yes, I know that several times this year, I have stated that I do not believe in fate. That everything is about choice and our choices lead to the doors of opportunity to be open so that we can make decisions on our lives. But, more and more, in the back of my head i was hearing this question of, "what about the things we cannot control".

Let me be honest here. I was a big believer in fate a long time ago. But due to how messed up things have become over the past several years, I began to think differently. To be even more honest, the idea of fate scares me. I feel that I have lost control of my life a long time ago and not being the one in the driver's seat is not a comfortable feeling.

It wasn't until I really started doing my job search that I realized that I need "Jesus to take the wheel". While I control the things I do and where I apply, I am not in control of the outcome. I thought about this fact last night and I realized that I am going to end up exactly where I need to be in time. It hit me like a brick wall...fate. I am certainly not saying that I will land the perfect job because it was "demanded by the gods" but I will say that perhaps I have to realize I have a destiny.

The problem I truly I have with fate is when it comes to love. Relationships are hard enough as it is. I believe that while we really do not choose who we fall in love with, we do choose what to do with our feelings and that is when things get messy. What I constantly have to remind myself is that anything is possible in life. Perhaps I have to view love and relationships like a job application process. I will put in my resume in for various opportunities and wait for a reply. If I get no response then I need to move on, all in hopes that the right opportunity comes my way.

I think the above metaphor works to an extent because with jobs there is no emotion spent on one application and this because job searching is all based on chance. Sure, you can have a good resume and say all the right things in a cover letter, but one has to stand out. Much of this is not in our control thus the say, if it was meant to will be.

So, is this my final word on fate? I am not sure. I would like to think it is. I may still talk about in general terms. However, I am a Gemini and I fluctuate my thoughts and opinions based on my experiences. Right now, I am just letting go of the wheel and letting fate take control.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


I don't intend on my words
and thoughts to be conveyed
or relayed or replayed
in such a way that makes
it seem like I don't care
While I have all the time to share
my words and my actions are viewed
skewed and reviewed
for all to question
my intention
while I mention
that my heart is still the same
beating and loving
at the same rate
because everything I feel is love not hate
my heart and my words will match
how I feel
thus what I say is real
my message is cryptic
but so is life... is my life
what are intentions?
if they are met with wrong assumptions
what is the point of a joke?
if no one laughs
at the end of the day
all that remains is me
is that so difficult to see?
the looking glass tells me everyday
that i have to be better in every way
better than my past
better than the rest
better than the one looking back at me
what are my intentions?
I intend on being a man
I intend on having a plan
I intend on showing the world
the real me
where is the line drawn
between intention and assumption?
don't assume I don't care
don't assume that I am selfish
hell may be paved with good intentions
but my heart is fueled by them
so if i go to hell for thinking,
acting, and feeling with it...
Then I will forever be damned for what I intend.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Say it aint so Sammy!

Many people think I am crazy when I bring up the issue of color within the Latino Community. They tilt their head to the side with a crazy look and say "Really?" I have mentioned several times that most Latinos are color struck and feel that marrying a lighter skin man or woman is a way of raising up our people. But, Sammy Sosa took it to a whole new level.

Sammy Sosa was an icon in the 1990's with his battle to be the home run king against Mark McGuire in Major League Baseball. Those two men brought back baseball from the dark ages that was caused by the labor strike. It also brought the out the fact that Sammy was Dominican; a very dark skinned Latino.

He has a very good public persona. Despite his issues at the congressional hearing on steroids where he, all of a sudden doesn't know English, he has always been the type of person to attract attention. I regarded his skin color to very much be apart of who he is, it was apart of his swag as a baseball player and a Latino. Sammy represents Afro-Latinos just as much as Roberto Clemente during his career.

So the question is, how insecure does one have to feel in order to be able make your skin lighter? Was he feeling left out? He shows up to the Latin Grammy's looking like Mc Lyte. Really Sammy? When I looked up the reason why he went through this transformation, I was shocked with what I found. He went through a skin rejuvenation process that temporarily lightens the skin color. Apparently women do this all the time according to his friends. They say he will be back to his negrito skin color soon.

Let's break this down. So Sammy decides that he is going to rejuvenate his skin right before one of the biggest Latino events of the year. I would like to know what woman does this and gets the same results as Sosa did. Last time I checked, rejuvenating black skin did not need make it white. Think about all the white people who are desperate to get darker and go to tanning salons so they can be a shade closer to our beautiful black skin.

I am sorry, but I am not buying it. I think it is a piss poor excuse. I think Sammy succumbed to the pressures that of being Afro-Latino in Latin America. He has now become an affront to me and all Afro-Latinos who are proud of our heritage and proud of our appearance.

It is not a good look Sammy. Not at all.

Friday, November 6, 2009

An Underdeveloped Talent is me. -_-

Last night someone asked me to tell them something about me that they did not already know. After some thought, I admitted to her that I have a sketchbook. I actually have several of them. Drawing was something I used to do all the time. In fact, I used to draw as much as I write now.

Being such a fan of comic books when I was a kid, drawing was something I just loved to do. I think over the years I had gotten better and better. I was able to understand shapes and shading. I just had serious issues drawing women (which I have since overcome). However, I have stopped drawing seriously and concentrated on my writing. Truth be told, I never considered myself all that good with a pencil.

However, I will doodle pictures and objects in meetings. Some of my co-workers have looked at me and told me that they cannot believe that I drew a certain picture. I have even go so far as to sketch people during the meeting. I must say that I am productive at work it is just that sometimes I just need to keep my hands moving. While I do have a love for drawing, I really do not think I am all that good.

Something that I do not think I have admitted either was is the fact that when I was in high school I aspired to be a comic-book writer. I was so deep on this committal that I created hundreds of characters with stories behind them. I will not take the entire credit myself, I did have a good friend help me with many of the stories. I am not sure why I did not follow through with this. I think is was mostly that I did not know how one becomes a comic book writer. As a matter of fact, I still don't.

I look back at it and many of the characters and stories were of Latino and African American characters. Sure, I had white people, but the world that I created was much more about realness of people of all backgrounds. So, even as a high school nerd I still had some sort of social consciousness in me. In either case, I look at how comics are being written and I am happy because I know that I would have written those books in a very similar way.

I do find interesting that I feel the need to express myself in some sort of way. I just find the use of words to be easier for me then to actually draw something. However, I did sketch the above photo this morning. It is supposed to be me and I know that I am off in a few place. It was a quick thing that I just did. I have to laugh because I took a picture of myself with my cell phone and then drew this. As, I am sketching myself I am looking at all my features. I start thinking: damn, I have a big nose...whoa my lips are kinda my forehead that large?

I think I now know why I stopped drawing: I over analyze EVERYTHING! :)

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Ever Changing Definition of Love

This is something I have been wrestling with all week. I have been reading my past blog entries to gain some inspiration for my next blog topic and I started thinking about just how far my thought process has gone when it come to the definition of love. I think everyone has their view on it and most times it is never the same. I am not even sure that many of us even think about their own personal view on love. When I was younger I just thought it is something that just happens to you.

As I have gotten older, I do see that love is much more complicated than just it just happening. I can easily be a person that says that love stinks but that would be crass and not true. But, I can say that love is something that I simply have not had much luck with. Of course, in saying that, I do realize that I have had my faults when it comes to make things work when it come to relationships. I certainly do not want to come across as a man that thinks I am not at any fault for my own failures with love.

Let me point out that I thinking out loud here. I am not sure I even have a clear definition of love. At one point, I could tell you that love is something that you feel and then from there who knows what happens. I want to say that love is something that is shared, but there are often situations that it is not. However, I am starting to think that love is something that a person has and they choose to share with special people in their lives.

Of course there are different versions of love but it all comes from one place, the heart. I think about the numerous amount of times that I have had my heart broken...and I am not even talking about women that I have been in love with. A perfect example would be last night. I was speaking my 10 year niece (she is really Josie's niece). She wanted to know if I was moving far way because of my divorce. I told her that I was moving but not too far away so that she could not see me. I knew she was sad because she really thinking that she may not see me again. Thus my heart breaks ever so slowly.

I guess the real reason for questioning my own definition of love is because I am the type of person who tends to follow my heart. As much as I can over think things and analyze them to death, it all comes down to following my heart, right or wrong. While I am not sure if that is the best thing to do, it is what it is. There are times in which I feel pretty confident about life and then there are times in which I just feel defeated. Nevertheless, I do know that anything is possible so it just really depends on the day with me.

What really throws me for a loop is the close relationship that love and fate have. I have said many times on this blog that I do not believe in fate. I do not think that there is a universal script that says we will end up exactly where we need to be no matter what. I would like to believe in choice. I believe that we choose our path. We decide what is the best course of action is on any given day thus our lives end up the way they do based on our own actions. I think this is a wonderful argument against fate and destiny....except for the fact that I am not sure we choose who to fall in love with...

See, again, sometimes it just happens. We can deny it if we want, but I am not entirely sure we can help who we fall for. So what does that mean? If we do not willingly choose who we love (because we certainly do not choose our family either) then what is that? Fate? Destiny? You can see how this troubles me. It is bad enough that I feel that I lack control of most of my life and I cannot control what I dream. So what does all this mean?

I cannot tell you how many times I have heard people tell me that they have no idea why they fell in love with a certain person. Then there are those people I see who are in denial of actually being in love. So then does that mean that saying "You don't choose love, love chooses you" is true? Hell, if that is the case then I need to seriously need to evaluate my view on fate. But, let me be very clear here. I used to believe in fate. I used to be believe in destiny. But, over the last few years I have become very rigid in my view of these things. I have lost faith.

I lost faith in so many things and that has effected me. I did not realize this until about a week ago and I am not talking about religion. I am talking about faith in my myself and in my view of the world. I over think things because I have failed so much that I am afraid to fail again, while fully knowing that failure is the only true path to success. I want to be confident that things will go well. I know many people think it is silly of me to feel this way because they see me as a guy who has so many things going for him.

My definition of love is ever changing right now. I am not sure what it is. But I am sure of what it isn't. I guess I may just have to let go of the wheel and let fate decide...

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Drink Water

Last night I posted an article from Yahoo! about the effects of soda on the human body and it got me thinking. I used to drink a lot of soda. I gave up the beverage in order to live a healthier life and the results have been very positive. These days I drink more water than anything, but I just look back and think about how much soda I used to consume.

For starters, Pepsi was my drink of choice. I just loved how it tasted and how it just felt going down. I could drink several liters in a couple of days. I drank soda with just about every meal. When I went to places like McDonalds, I would order the super sized meal because it meant I would get the biggest size for my soft drink. I almost want to say that it was an addiction, but it was close.

I didn't drink soda when I was a kid. In fact, I didn't even drink water. There was always some fruit (Sun Dew) drink or iced tea mix that we had. It was understood that the soda that was in the fridge was my mother's, so I never touched it. I also remember the little 25 cent drink we got at the store that we all called, "Quarter Waters". Those were pretty good and they can quench a thirst during a long and active summer. But, even out in the street, I never drank soda. I really wasn't allowed to drink it all that much, maybe on a special occasion or when I was hanging out with my father.

When I got to High School, soda was a little more prevalent in my life. It was just all over the place. The school vending machines sold them for very cheap. I think they were less expensive than some of the juices. Plus there was a certain feeling that I could act older drinking this stuff because it was so out there in the school. Even, when I has a job at Pathmark, soda was just easier to purchase. So, I would buy sandwich that the Deli guys would hook up for me (they would stamp a $1 on it) and I would wash it down with a nice cold Pepsi.

Before I made the switch between living with parents, I started drinking soda at home. When I did live with my mother and brother, soda was kept in the fridge and I would drink it like everyone else. As a matter of fact, when I visit him now, there is soda there but my nephew cannot drink. I find it funny how that works. Once I moved back in with my dad, soda was on the no drink list in the house.

It was not until college that I really started devouring soda. When eating in the dining halls, all the drinks were free and unlimited. Of course, I could sit here and say that I could have just drank the fruit juices, but this Syracuse University is a Pepsi campus. Needless to say I was swimming in the stuff. I didn't drink coffee at the time so I can easily start my day with a small bottle of soda. That was just the norm for me, not realize the effects of all that sugar and added flavors can do.

As I got older, the drinking habits became worse. Soda was an everyday thing. The problem is that when I left college, I became less active, which, of course means that pounds started adding on. I am not blaming soda for fact I am not blaming soda period. Lord knows I can drink it all day. It just got the point that by the time I got married, I had to really look at my soda intake. I did not want to become diabetic.

The first thing that any soda drinker would do is switch to the diet variety. This is not as ok as it may seem. Less sugar yes, but the addiction was still there. As my life began to change in March, I decided to run. With running, certain changes has to be made to maintain levels of fitness. I had to give up soda entirely. I have come to learn that anything you put in your body is used as a source of fuel. Let's not forget that soda is the key contributor to belly fat.

So, now most of the time I drink water. I think once I got the soda out of my system, I was able to lose the 20lbs. Plus, water feels more natural when you drink it after a long work out. I feel that I tend to over do things in terms of habits. Weather it is about drinking too much coffee or too much soda, what I need to realize that everything must be taken in moderation.

Friday, October 30, 2009

A Dramaless life?

I feel like my life is getting interesting again. Before I get all "happy" about it, I was just pointing this out to a friend. Some opportunities have presented themselves which are not all good and not all bad,but nevertheless they are there. Her response to me was something that I just didn't expect. "An interesting life means you will have drama." I just rolled my eyes.

See, one of my goals is to live life with as little drama as possible. I am one to believe that drama can follow people only if they let it. I do know that I do have some stresses in my life that I need to rectify at some point if I truly want to live such a life. Of course, I am not even sure if there is such a thing as a "drama less life". Think about it for a second, even Jesus had drama in his life.

When I am talking about drama I am speaking in general terms, so yes I am being vague. The question is, do I invite it? Well, duh, I think I can answer that honestly and say yes I do. Not all drama is invited, things just happen that is beyond our control. However, I think it can be minimized (although, I am shaking my head right now because I have no idea how to do that).

I am forced to think about an argument I had the other day about how people do not change. I find that hard to believe. I think that, as humans, we have the ability to adapt. We have the will power to withstand things. However some of us, myself included, do not know how to change. Which is why people do soul searching. As I get older, I think about all the life decisions I had to make at an early age. I had to make a choice between who to be with: Mother or Father, at the age of 16. While this is a choice I do not regret, think about how hard that is. Yet, in certain circles of my family I am still regarded as the same person I was when I was 16.

We expect 18-19 year olds in college to make a choice in what they want to do for the rest of their lives, yet most of them wont really decide until they are about 25-35. Trust me, I know this. People decide to recreate themselves all the time.

My point is that a lot of drama is a result of the unwillingness to change. Now the trick is understanding that many of us just have a fear of change and do not even realize it. We can fight change so much that we create issues with just about everyone we know. We ignore our current issues because we refuse to see the real answer, which is that we have the power to make the right decision. I know I often think about the possibility of making the wrong move. The question of "what if?" come up all the time. It is fear that stops us from changing anything thus allowing us to continue down the same path of bad decisions and bad behaviors.

I am not sure a drama less life is even possible. If you read about the great people in history, you will undoubtedly realize that they had drama too. However, they found the strength to move above all that. What I need to do is be able to roll with the changes happening in my life right now and pray that I make the right choices. This may mean a complete reboot of my life and in the way I do me.

This is a part of my awakening. The fact is that anything is possible but, I cannot effectively deal with the future if I remain the same person I was...

Monday, October 26, 2009


I think I had an Awakening last week. Something like an epiphany. I suddenly realized that anything in life is possible. I know this may sound like a surprise coming from me because at times I can be negative, but when it comes down to it, anything can happen.

I have been trying to do something I talked about last week, which is living in the moment. While that is hard to do during the bad moments it is great during the good ones. I had something happen to me that was pretty extraordinary. I was writing my blog when an old friend hit me up. At first I was not sure who she was but when we spoke and I finally recognized her. I was in shock. Here is a person I have not spoken to in over 20 years, basically since my early years in grammar school, and we at talking about old times.

What amazed me was that I never thought I would hear from her again. She was the only girl in school who treated me like the nice kid I was. Then she had to leave do to an accident. Never saw her again. Sounds like one of those stories you here from the movies. But in this case it was true, until last week. Come to find out that she is the same good person I remember.

Why am I making a big deal of this? Well, because at that moment I realized that anything can happen. I truly believe that everything happens for a reason. People come and go in our lives and they all serve a purpose. Of course, we need to figure out the purpose. I was validated in speaking to her. See, I always thought I was like this annoying little kid that no one cared for. She proved that was not the case. I am grateful for that.

Apply this lesson for the rest of my life and I may have something to look forward to. Look, I have made plenty of mistakes in the 35 years on this planet, but aren't we all allowed to fail? Despite all this, I am still a good person. I do not have evil thoughts and I do think that one day good karma may swing my way.

This is the point of living in the moment because anything is possible. Maybe one day I will be so successful that I wont know what to do. Perhaps I will find someone that can make me happy. The point is that we just don't know. I know that I use to have a fear of the unknown and that is because of the pessimist in me. Not so much now because I have been able to let go of many things. But now, I just feel something has awakened in me.

Is it confidence? I am not sure. Maybe it something that makes me realize that I am not fuck up that I once thought I was. One thing is for certain, once I move out of Syracuse, my life will change. I have no doubt that my angst to start over will pay off and all those who thought they knew me will be very surprised for what I have in store for them...

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Something I found in my Journal

Reading my old journal from High School again and I found 2 poems that I wrote. This one stuck out to me today. I originally named this poem "Love", but I do not like it. So I will just leave it untitled. I also want to point out that I am amused that I managed to rhyme everything.

Love, something I never felt
I'm not the type of guy
who makes the girl's heart melt
Yet, I wonder why

What must I do
What must I say
I have not a clue
Why must it be this way

I have much love to be shared
If I knew how
with someone who cared
like maybe a girl right now

Love is something to enjoy
Love is something to feel
not something to employ
or something to heel

The world is taught to hate
or to start war
they cannot see the gate
beyond the sky and more

beyond the gate are angels with wings
and things that will please us
the king of kings
a man named Jesus

He'll teach us how to love
from the bottom of his heart
to up above
then we shall start

the era of love and peace
when I can finally love
and war will cease
and I will enjoy the up above

Wow...I was pretty naive. I think I just said that I will have to die in order to learn what love is. I am not so sure that is far This is my second poem ever and I posted this to show the progress of my writing and my thought process. I was in catholic school so the reference about Jesus is not surprising to me...

I may just write a poem on love now that I have felt it...

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Latinostereotypes in America

Ok...I get it. I get why there is a need for Latino in America. I get that CNN wants to boost viewership while giving an unbiased look at Latinos in this country. I also get that Soledad O'Brien busted her ass on this show. What I do not get is the fact that despite all there was to work with that we are still made to look like all we do is multiply and struggle with English. Clearly that is not intent but it seemed to me that Latinos were shown in a light that made it seem that are constantly struggling.

The problem I have with this is that there are so many of us that are successful, including Soledad. If you saw Latino in America than you know that there were 2 stories in particular that had to with 2 young Latinas and their struggles through life. In the end, they both end up pregnant. Of course this is only defined by the fact that at the beginning of this show it is pointed out that Latinos are the fast growing minority. You think? From the way it is perpetuated, underage sex is the reason.

My question is, where are the stories that balance the negative? Where are the stories of the successful college Latina that to 2 majors, in a sorority, has a work-study job, and still manages to make the deans list? It cannot be that hard to find. I know that I can find several of them on campus right now. Maybe that doesn't provide enough drama. Perhaps that is too real to see Latinos succeed.

I want to also add that I am not saying that just because anyone of us that may have children at an early age are failures. There are plenty examples that can made of quite the opposite. However, those are not document by this program. Both of those segments end with this feeling of...oh by the way, she had a kid.

What I also found interesting the 1-2 minute segment before each story. Those were more interesting than some of the featured stories. A good example is the 2 Mexican restaurant owners who boldly state that you will never see them serve tacos at their restaurant. Why? Because real Mexican do not just eat tacos! How amazing is that? But you not see that segment because that is way too positive.

Needless to say I am disappointed because not only do I feel a serious lack of positivity, but there wad no sense of hope. I feel like the average white person would see this and just say that the Spics and the wetbacks are taking over, as if we have nothing more to so than be illegal, fail in school, and make babies.

On a side note. I actually thought Latino in America was better than I thought it would be. So what does that say? I only say because I thought it could have been so much worse. They did show Afro Latinos which is a start, but I think they should have highlighted other people from South America. I know part 2 is tonight, so I can only hope things get better, but I know it wont...

So where do we go from here? Well for starters there are forums like this, which show examples of Latino success from their own words. We need to always remind people that we do indeed have success.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Living in the Moment

"The Secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, not to worry about the future, nor to anticipate troubles, but to live the present moment wisely and earnestly." - Buddha

One of the things that I have learned, is how hard life can be. It is so very easy for anyone of us to live in the past or dream too much of the future. But, it is very difficult to just live in the moment. I think that this is something that I am slowly learning to do.

When people say to me that I have to take things day by day, I am not really sure how to take that. I understand that we all have to live life one day at a time, but I have been the type to consider my past as a part of the plan that I once had for the future. The problem is that I never really stopped to smell the roses. In fact, the only thing I really stop for is the smell of bullshit, but I am sure that is just the way life is.

I have come to learn that life is a series of little moments that I just need to enjoy. These are things that I cannot feel too deeply about. There are also bad moments that I cannot feel too deeply about as well. So no matter good or bad I just have to take everything as it comes. So the goal is to enjoy the good ones and dismiss the bad ones, while not taking either too deeply. Wow, that is really hard to do. However, these little moments that I have define my day.

I know that I can work so much that I may never go outside on a particular day to see the sky (even though it is cloudy most of the time). Many days can go by and I may not stop what I am doing to just go somewhere. I also know with all things that I think about when it comes my impending divorce, I seldom take the time for myself to do what I would like to do. Again, this is hard to do. Not only I am going through a life altering event, I am also altering my life in various ways.

There was a thought that perhaps I may be living in the past or just caught up by it. That may have been true some months ago, but I do not think that is the case anymore. I have painstakingly taken my time to go through every last issue that I think I have and analyzed them backwards and forwards. It would be foolish to say that I have addressed every issue I do have. So, I have learned to let many of them go.

Living in the moment for me requires a great deal of patience. It is a balancing act that I have to do so that I do not get too stressed or too excited about the possibility of things. I just need to take things for what they are. Through this, I see that anything is truly possible in my life. Some people has mistaken my willingness to live in the moment as me waiting for something to happen and that makes me smile. Right now, the only thing I wait for the right job to come along so that I can move on with my life. While that might be waiting in a certain is only because I put the effort into sending out my resume.

With all this being said, I really do plan out my future in terms of goals for myself. I have goals that I set a few months ago, but that does not stop me from living in the moment. I want to also point out that I am not running away from the past either, it is what it is. Thus, the balancing act that I speak about. Almost like a tightrope walk to whatever my destiny is.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Afro is Latino

I can remember the first time I felt I was different. I was a small kid in catholic school and I questioned my appearance. I perceived myself to not be as cute as the other boys my age; the lighter skinned boys. Granted, I was a very skinny kid. Being called "flaco" was not something that was foreign to me. But, what really made me think that I was ugly had to do with how little girls responded to me versus some of the other boys I had seen.

I wont even go into the fact that some of my lighter skinned cousins thought it was quite amusing to call me "tar baby". While that seemed funny at the time to them, I can remember asking God (in the numerous times I was at church because, again I went to catholic school)why was I born with bad hair? Why was I born not looking more like my dad since he can have flowing hair that women seem to be attracted to? I recall thinking why did I have to have darker skin?

I have the complexion of my mother. While I hung out with mostly African Americans, I was always told that I am not black. This lead to confusion because the mirror told me something different. So this made going to High School and College very difficult for me. It can be hard to try to fit in when you are not sure of your own place in world. Now that I think about it, this is probably the reason why I did not get along with many people in High School. I chose my friends sparingly and I think even to this day, I am not sure I can call many of them friends at all.

I always assumed that the college experience would be different for me and it certainly was. But the dynamic of not fitting in with African American or Latinos was unsettling. The funny thing is not many people really believe there is a difference in the social order, as if it were my paranoia. However, when you are a dark Latino you know that it is far more that just paranoia. I learned very quickly that people can be very color struck when it come to the appearance of others.

Just to break it down. White people have always thought I was African American. Which is why that I feel the need to represent my culture while I am in Syracuse. I use my Afro-Latino persona as a way to teach people that we all do not look the same. I bring this up because my parents cannot believe I am like this "Super Latino" when I am at work, but you know what? Someone has got to wear the cape. Most African Americans just think I am black as well, but they are not too surprised about my origin. Latinos...well they just know.

The funny (well maybe not so funny) thing is that during my college years it was just so very apparent to me that I essentially did not fit in any group for long periods of time. Of course, when I look back at it most of my good friends are black. I had always got the feeling that I was just not Latino enough for my Latino classmates (not all felt that way, but most). Was it perhaps that I did not speak Spanish as everyone thinks I should have? I am not sure, but there was definitely something because I do know that I was one of very few Afro-Latinos on campus at the time (believe it or not there were not the many Dominicans as there are now at

Why do I bring this up? Why am I all of a sudden writing about this? Yes, I know that this blog has been mostly about my road to redemption, but I want people to realize that no matter what I go through, this identity that I have will always be apart of me. I want people to understand that I am very proud to say that I am Afro-Latino. I understand why my skin is dark. I understand the African roots of my culture that includes the music, culture and religion. I also understand why people do not understand where people like me are coming from.

One of the questions I do get is why did I pick the name "latinegro". Well besides the obvious connotation there is another reason. Two years ago, I did a research paper on Afro Latinos and I ended up coming away with so much knowledge that I used this name that I found which was coined by another person. Her name is Marta Cruz-Jazen and she wrote "¿Y Tu Abuela A'onde Está?", which a very interesting article and she calls people like myself, latinegros. Clearly I loved it and had to use it.

So let me define what latinegros are in my own words that I am taking straight from the research paper that I wrote: Latino Negros can be identified as dark skinned Latinos. Often times they will be referred to as Afro Latinos or Black Latinos. In the various Latino cultures throughout the Caribbean and Latin America, they represent the bottom of the social ladder. They are normally the poor and uneducated. The term Latino Negro is a not a term that is recognized nor used, but it is something I feel best represents what I am in relation to other Latinos.

This is who I am. This is what I identify as. I may not have an Afro but the Afro has me...

Friday, October 16, 2009

Doors To Redemption

A short poem today but...I have learned that you cant always pick the length of what come from the heart:

How many times
will I have to relive the past
to discover that time heals
old wounds slowly
in fact so slow that it
is like running backwards
on an escalator
that puts us nowhere
but yet I still care?
How many times do I
have to blame myself
or show that I really
did things incorrectly
my words did come out incoherently
I have just grown tired
of hiding behind the melancholy
forgiveness goes both ways
letting go of all past days
of all the fighting and the tears
where truth unlocks hidden fears
the doors of the long hallway
are opening and it is time
to choose which direction
that will lead to redemption

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Honesty is Horrifying...

Ever wake up in a mood and not know why you are in that mood? Every feel an emotion that you thought was one thing when it really is another? I think that is one of things that makes us human is the fact that we cannot even figure out what is really wrong with us emotionally. Sort of when you talking to someone and the next thing you know you are yelling at them. Chances are you have some anger hidden inside of you that has yet to be released.

For me, it is a strange feeling to wake up in a anxious type of mood. My conscience mind just cannot figure out why am feeling this way. It usually takes me all day to figure out why. Normally the answer is in the back of my mind and I am ignoring it. It just takes some sort of admission to myself of what it truly is. Either I am mad at someone and just do not want admit it or there is a situation that is coming up that I know I have to deal with, in which case, I do not want to admit it.

Honesty is something that seems to playing very big in mind lately. It has been a banner that have been flying lately and not everyone is ready for that. I am not saying that I am ready for it either, but I have no choice. Being honest begins with self. I feel that I have been lying to myself for so many years. Not just about my marriage but about my entire life. Is it possible that I have not been the person I think I am?

I cannot say for sure, but I have come to accept many things in my life. The only thing that I can hold on to is honesty. Holding on to a lie is like holding on to a small branch while sinking in quicksand. There is no way you can get out of it. As I mentioned before, people who lie to themselves are dangerous people. I was one of them. I became a danger to myself and to others that I care about. Why? Because I did not know how much my lies can hurt other people.

The best policy for me is to be aware of my own feelings and emotions. Sometimes that is hard to do. I am sure there are times people have no idea why they are mad or upset. We tend to call it stress and it is self inflicted. It does make me think about people I may run into and they are always in a bad mood. Who is to say that they themselves are not tortured due to past decisions.

All these thoughts have to with a movie I saw this weekend, The Invention of Lying. When I say that people are not prepared for honesty, is how I feel when it comes to me being prepared for this movie. Here is one of those films that is billed as a comedy and you will walk out feeling completely changed. This movie completely validates my point on how the truth will set any one of us free. You want to be honest for yourself.

The premise of The Invention of Lying is very simple: imagine a world where no one lies at all and then in that world is one guy who has the ability to lie. Sounds like a riot right? Think again. If you can imagine no filters on thoughts, people telling you exactly how they feel about you at any given moment. Can you imagine if someone you thought loved you really cannot stand you? That is almost horrifying.

What struck me the most about this movie is that pure honesty did not bother people. It is what it is and people moved on. There was no false hope. No wondering if someone loved you. People know exactly where they stood in life. This is just unfathomable to me. Where would I be life today if I knew where I stood in person's life? However, we, as humans, have to lie. We have to play the game because we love drama so much.

So my dilemma is that as honest as I can be to myself and others and no matter how direct I can be, people will always lie to themselves and to me. It is a part of life.


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