How My Mama Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Mexican Independence Day

Because of what falls left of the hyphen in “Mexican-American,” I am often asked how my family celebrates Mexican Independence Day on September 16 (today). I have to confess that we never have. As native Californians, my family, just like everyone else on our suburban block on July 4th, merely lit up the ol’ barbeque […]

We’ve Come a Long Way, Chica. Or Have We?

It was fellow seventh grader Ana Chavez who first decreed to me: “Only putas go on the pill.” A few years later, as a sexually active teenager, I was still haunted by Ana’s proclamation, which echoed the sentiments of my neighborhood and family. While I feared becoming embarazada (pregnant)–a seemingly common rite of passage for […]

The High Price of Hollywood Health Care

At first I refused the offer to write for the George Lopez show. After all, I fancied myself an author-slash-poet-slash-critical thinking essayist and had just purchased a brand new IBM ThinkPad to prove it. (Note, this was back in 2002.) Besides, I’d heard all about the “not so female friendly” environment of the predominately male […]

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