30 September 2012

it's been a while

another year or two since i've posted here. i meant to keep some of my longer winded ramblings over here instead of on my tumblr, but having my thoughts all in one place has just been easier for the past few years. but i think i have more thoughts in my head so i might be back here more often once again. an update: i switched jobs after working at one place for the first seven years of my grown up life. i now kind of sort of work for the same guy i worked for for six of the previous seven years. new location. new coworkers. shorter commute. similar work. feel a little better about it. got legally, civilly united with my main squeeze, henceforth referred to as Smoggy, back in june of this year. in two weeks we will have our big catholic ceremony in a big church surrounded by 70 members of my family and about 15 of his. i feel bad because i know he is sad about the 'smallness' of his side of the wedding, but also constantly amazed by his willingness to 'let me have it my way' and satisfy my family - who is larger and definitely more in control of the big to-do. we also got a cat. about 6 months ago. i never had one growing up and have always considered myself a canine lover to the max, but wouldn't you know it? i am now truly, madly, deeply in love with this little grey panther who tolerates my kisses and squeezes most of the time. his name is max.

01 November 2010

Do you think people dressed in ponchos and sombreros (ostensibly dressed as “Mexicans”) get embarrassed when they run into me?

This was the question I posed to my (Irish/German-American) boyfriend as we wandered around Salem on Halloween and saw our third or fourth sombrero/poncho/mustache combo stroll past us. He asked if it offended me (as a Mexican-American) and I couldn’t give a definitive answer of “Yes” but more like – “it’s annoying and I wish they wouldn’t.” It was hard for me to explain that seeing people dressed as “Mexican” alongside people dressed as zombies, bananas, and characters from the Jersey Shore made me sort of stiffen and groan on the inside.

Because I’m so non-confrontational, my boyfriend volunteered to confront one of the Halloween “Mexicans” and ask about their motivations for me, but I declined his offer. You can’t really explain to a drunken Halloween reveler that by dressing as “a Mexican” they’re being culturally insensitive and putting an entire group of unassuming people on a cartoonish character pedestal alongside reality show train wrecks (Snooki), pop music icons (Lady Gaga), and movie characters (Avatar). Snooki, Lady Gaga, and the aliens in Avatar are acceptable Halloween costumes because these people and characters put themselves in the spotlight. They are caricatures they created themselves or are fake characters dreamt up in the mind of a Hollywood producer. I think my argument is that Mexicans are not asking to be mocked, and if the butt of the joke isn’t in on it – it’s not that funny. I think my boyfriend tried to understand my argument but it was still elusive, mainly he just didn’t want to see me upset.

Later on in the evening my Muslim-sensitive boyfriend said, “That’s ridiculous!” when he saw a couple of guys dressed up as “Muslims” in robes and head-wraps and assorted accessories. He was couldn’t pinpoint why their outfits were offensive, but he knew the message that they were sending was wrong and not “all in fun.” At that point I said – “Remember how I couldn’t explain why dressing ‘Mexican’ for Halloween was wrong, but it just is?” and he nodded in agreement.

Unrelated, we went dressed as a pair of pandas: cute, non-offensive and drastically endangered.

17 September 2010


In other news, it's my dad's birthday today. He's... a bit older than he was yesterday.

I'm sad I can't be down in San Antone to celebrate with him on a sweet bike ride or sweaty hike, but I know we'll make up for it with some quality time when I head home in November.

I miss Texas. And I miss my Pops.

A Resurrection

This spot has been abandoned for over a year. I think it's time for me to get back into the habit of writing complete, thoughtful sentences again - prettied up enough for mass (or minute) consumption.

I really plan on sticking with it this time. I will bring back my blogger blog. I've missed it.

26 May 2009

Citizens of the internet, this one is for you.

I recently got a facebook message from a friend asking me to remove a couple of pictures of her from my albums. She's not tagged and they're not particularly scandalous in any way, but she said it's not the image she wants to present. Removed, no problem. They were from a few years ago, so totally cool. Whatever.

It did get me thinking about the image I myself am building at present. Every time I pose for a photo I am fully aware that it may end up on the internet somewhere and anyone on earth, from my parents to my priest to my future grandkids, might see it. Everything I post to the internet or send out in emails has the full possibility of being read by anyone. I think as a citizen of the internet or whatever, we all need to be aware of this.

Of course there are things I write and pictures I take that I’d prefer certain people not see. I do dumb things, I drink too much and act silly, I get angry and rant. It happens. And even at my worst there is always a chance the world will find out, so I just have to make sure that I don’t do anything too horrid and if I do, no one is recording the moment. I have tons of images and thoughts recorded that if read by my boss at a staff meeting or my parents at a family dinner would probably make me really embarrassed, but that’s all. Nothing I should rightfully get disowned or fired over. As long as I stay on this side of the line, I think I’m fine.

All grown-ups should realize they have a responsibility to manage their own images. This isn’t something new, people have always gossiped. It’s just now that mistakes you make can have a much longer lasting and farther reaching impact.

It's been almost a year that this guy has sat by

A little dusty around here, but I'm going to try and come back.

20 July 2008

i don't want to join your facebook group

One of my managers started a facebook group for a work community I’m in and sent an email telling people to join. I do not want to join. But of course, by not joining - they [work people] will notice. I know it’s not a mandatory thing. I could probably speak to my manager about it and explain why I don’t want to join this group on facebook. She’s an awesome person and totally understanding. And yet, I have a feeling it would only end up with me looking like a complete jerk or a weirdo with something to hide. Which is not really it.

Except, it kinda is. I’m hiding my personal life, kinda. Something people have been doing for ages. I’m guessing that 20 years ago, before the internet, work colleagues never knew their coworker’s favorite movies, number one song, and which bars they were at last weekend. I’d sort of like to maintain the old way for now.

I’ve already removed links to my blogs and hid most of my photos on facebook because of the growing number of work contacts I have on my ‘friends’ list. This limited profile shite that facebook has doesn't really work, in the social sense. I mean, yes- technically, I can hide the stuff. However, people who have your limited profile KNOW that they have the limited version, methinks. And it probably offends them.

One day I’d like to think that my work life and my personal life will be friends. That everything I say here can be heard there. But right now, I’d like to keep them separate. Work people do not need to see my angsty blog posts about dumb boys or the 10 million pictures of graffiti that I’ve accumulated on my flickr. They don't need to know if I got drunk last weekend or had a fight with my parents or stubbed my toe on a closet door.


Of course, I guess it doesn't make much sense to ask for a facebook exclusion, as I throw all these details of my life on the internet anyways. It’s not like they're hidden in my secret diary or in a box under my bed. But still, I don't know. For my friends, yes - of course they should be able to see my pictures and read my rants. That's part of the reason I document everything- to share it with them; I keep everyone in the loop while documenting our hijinks. I just wish it wasn't so easy for my professional contacts to also be able to see all my internet secrets so easily.

16 July 2008

There Will Be Change

Today while planning some dinner dates with girlfriends and checking for flights to London in between a boat load of meetings and review sessions, I realized what a spoiled, self-centered brat I am and how unhappy I am in spite of it all.

I mean, I already knew that I have a good setup in life. Just this weekend I was telling my mother how on the whole, I generally dislike most people as they are apathetic and self-centered. I also acknowledged that I am one of these people I dislike. My mom’s response – not everyone’s like that, and if I’m not happy with who I am – then change.

This of course, made me think of one of my all time most inspirational quotes from Gandhi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

I feel like a few years ago I was on that path, being the change. But in recent years I’ve definitely slipped, slacked off my course. Now a significant amount of my non-work time is spent alone being antisocial, with friends being negative or with family, eating. And my work days are spent in a cubicle of a huge corporation doing work that I am nothing near passionate about.

This is not the path for me.

I’ve been out of college for three years. I’ve just hit the quarter century mark. I’m feeling overly angsty and frustrated with where I am right now, life wise. I expected more out of myself. Growing up I predicted that by the age of 25 I’d be firmly on the path to adulthood. Working at a job I loved or at least ready to go back to school and dive into a career I could be passionate about. Settling into a city I love and surrounded by good friends, family and a significant other. Spending my spare time making a difference and helping others through volunteer work.

Instead, I’m living in three cities, seeing friends or family only once or twice a week and generally not in passionate love with anyone or anything.

It’s unsettling and upsetting. I need to make a change. Lots of changes, actually.

I’m not ready to start a new career search just yet. And logistically, my multi-city life will have to continue for a bit longer. Cupid has yet to shoot his arrow my way and no dates are on the near horizon.

But volunteering, something that used to be one of my favorite activities but has dropped of my life radar in recent years, is something I can definitely control and jump into at this point in my life. I’ve just signed up for a few information sessions and filled out applications for a few non-profits. I need to try some things out, test the waters again. This is my start at fixing things. At finding the right path and getting on track to living the life I want.

I hear you, Gandhi, and as of today I can once again say, “I’m working on it.”

It feels good.

14 July 2008

finding art on your street

Originally uploaded by florajasmine
one of my favorite parts about my graffiti photography hobby is when i help other people take a second look at the world around them.

i know my friends are definitely more aware now than they were before about the streets they walk down. they're used to me pointing out little pieces high and low as we walk along in our cities, sometimes they even spot things first and point them out to me.

this weekend, when i was walking around brooklyn, snapping shots of some street art in decay - i occasionally caused a traffic jam while people stopped to look at me and figure out what exactly i was shooting. it was good though, making people stop in the midst of their afternoon errands. as i would walk away from a particularly interesting piece, i saw a few people take time and look at the art as well, pointing out special details or commenting on the subject to their friends.

it makes me happy, seeing other people appreciate street art in their/our/it's element.