PhD Life Yr 3: My Fuck-you Hoops

Current mood: Truth Hurts by Lizzo

Next month I will be the age my Papi was when I was born.

Pourquoi, pourquoi même quand les gens s’aiment
Il y a, il y a, toujours des problemes

I’m The Logician, The Thinker. INTP is my personality type…

“it’s not that they are dishonest, but people with the INTP personality type tend to share thoughts that are not fully developed, using others as a sounding board for ideas and theories in a debate against themselves rather than as actual conversation partners. This may make them appear unreliable, but in reality no one is more enthusiastic and capable of spotting a problem, drilling through the endless factors and details that encompass the issue and developing a unique and viable solution than INTPs – just don’t expect punctual progress reports. People who share the INTP personality type aren’t interested in practical, day-to-day activities and maintenance, but when they find an environment where their creative genius and potential can be expressed, there is no limit to the time and energy INTPs will expend in developing an insightful and unbiased solution…. When INTPs are particularly excited, the conversation can border on incoherence as they try to explain the daisy-chain of logical conclusions that led to the formation of their latest idea. Oftentimes, INTPs will opt to simply move on from a topic before it’s ever understood what they were trying to say, rather than try to lay things out in plain terms.

My friends and family and others who love me will read that ^ and yell out:  “YEAH AND IT’S FUCKIN ANNOYING!!”  I’ve seen it.  True story.

Yeah so about 3% of the population supposedly develops this personality type (prob nature and nurture). I gave up making sense to anyone long ago. I’m most chatty when I’m most uncomfortable- so yeah, it’s you. I demand a lot of personal time and space – get over it.

ESFJs make me queasy

don’t talk to INTPs about celebrities

THIS IS THE HALFWAY POINT TO MY PHD.

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26 June 2017, ad in a mall (Guayaquil, Ecuador)

I’ve picked my hoops.

Latinx INTP, coño!!

It’s been a difficult gestation period.  My Ph.D. baby experience has been trying. People  AT WORK cannot stand me. I feel respected but unloved. Luckily, this semester, I’ve gotten close to some wonderful people. I’ve also reconnected with some very lovely people from my past since getting out of that toxic relationship (with the epitome of white privilege, I’m still livid my ex-fucker threw out my Cuban postcards)…

So, the thing I enjoy most about social media is data.  I like the patterns, you see.  This is why I’m doing well in my Ph.D. life.  Intersectionality is NOT a thing – the feminists thumb up pro-women posts and anti-men posts but rarely the trans posts.  The lgbtq+ population rarely thumb up the pro-black. The Michiganders… *sighs* lemme stop before I get more hate snail mail.

Generalmente se entiende por “mal de ojo” a la energía negativa que descarga una persona sobre otra con solo mirarla con la intención de que le suceda algo malo, sentimiento que surge por envidia, egoísmo, resentimiento, mezquindad entre otros.
En nuestra sociedad hay muchos creyentes del llamado “mal de ojo”. Por ello acuden a curanderos, para obtener resultados eficaces. Sin embargo, no todos creen. Y es que ellos piensan que es una utopía creer que a través de una mirada se puedan transmitir buenas o malas energías hacia una persona.  Que más?

Having no interest in exerting control over other human beings…

I haven’t had more than 3 or 4 hours of sleep since Thanksgiving.  Nevertheless, on Saturday (snowy day), I decided to get out of bed around  8 a.m. I boiled an egg for breakfast, cut up some some vegetables and left stuff oven-ready and I was at the gym by 10:30.  I ran 6mph for 20 minutes on the treadmill and lifted weights (3 variations), 60 reps each.  I changed the relationship status with my massage lady today.  She is also my therapist now (tears and word vomit everywhere today).  By 13:30, I was showered and back in the kitchen making a vegan spaghetti squash vegetable medley for a group dinner before heading to get a manicure and look for some warm clothes. I picked up Amanda and head to Dr. M’s house for our Rueda meeting. I’m treasurer this year.

Saturday night was some of the most fun I’ve had in Michigan since moving here.

I’m so happy because today I found my friends…

Hair is something I hadn’t considered much outside of the white/black binary until recently with some other Chicanx Latinx. In our liminal spaces, some make us feel like the binary plays a tug-of-war with us – never content with our stance or critical of our loyalties… So, just saying,where I come from we touch hair, each other’s all the time but also strangers we just meet. Curly, straight, buzzed, dyed, natural, to compliment, to critique, to compare, to braid or comb…. todo.

“I need both my hands right now so I have to get off the phone” she said. “You’re driving, so you should get off the phone.” <- a case for intersectionality by a self-centered Becky I know

Well, I’m not here to teach.  I’m here to create testimonios de mi gente.  So, NO, this website is not for you and neither are my social media accounts and everything I post.

The last Wednesday of November in the afternoon I arrived at DTW and rushed to find the Michigan Flyer which would arrive within 30 minutes. I asked two men sitting near the buses whether they knew the stall of my bus. One answered. I thanked them and put my headphones back on. Next thing I know the other one crept up behind me and was apparently chatting with me. When I lifted my headphones to hear if anything he said was useful I was met with vapid observations and random questions. In all his useless drivel, he asks me if I’m Lebanese (because of my eyebrows?!) then Pakistani, Guatemalan… mid-response, he interrupts to say that I sound  like I’m from Michigan. When I tell him I’m from the east coast he’s shocked that I’m so cultured (?!?!). Then he asks me my age because I “look young” – STFU. I do NOT look 23. His attempted compliments came from thin air. Between his babbling, I tried re-directing the conversation asking if he ever asks White people where they’re from. He never considered that. He assumes they’re from here, “I guess.” I’m “smarter” than “almost everyone” he knows (YUCK, NOT A COMPLIMENT!!). He tells me he is “basically a mutt,” black, white and “Indian” (native) but that he knows people “only think black.” “But my mom is a beautiful white lady!” As he talks he steps closer.  Doesn’t he notice me stepping away each time? Then this rather large fellow (not quite 6′ and about 2 of me) begins telling me about his dull, very sad life of hating his new job and boss and wanting to travel (he’s never left Michigan…).  I put on my headphones cautiously, lowering the volume, nervous that he might get weird but hoping he’d get the hint. Luckily before I told him off, he got a phone call and seconds later my bus came. I waved quickly, trying to be fakepolite like he may be used to and he motioned that I wait… as I got on the bus, he walked towards it looking to me… I DO NOT KNOW YOU.

I exist in liminal spaces.
There are 16 tabs open here on Chrome and if I scroll to the left with my index, middle and right fingers to a new screen, I have 18 more tabs open.  Then I have 10 tabs open in Safari, plus 2 items in Finder open and one Word Document open. I am halfway through year 3 of my PhD.  I’m working on a book chapter about teacher attrition with my advisor and another about curriculum from the Latinx diaspora (with a friend).

In every segment of “Time: The Kalief Browder Story,” I’ve had to reality check.  I analyze how the education system of the U.S. has only assisted in poisoning humanity. It’s seems totally incomprehensible for a minute. Someone incarcerated with no reasons available? This is not infanticide.  Yet Jeff Robinson, ACLU Deputy Legal Director and Director of the Trone Center for Justice and Equality, is paternal, I felt.

Kalief was not cursed.

It was not “an ordeal.”

His story is not “a tragedy!”

This world is diseased by neoliberalism. At each turn, someone is looking to profit.

I confess.

I have always hated school.  Eddie Huang, you get me:

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Once my girl Gigi and I decided to skip a 10th grade I.B. chemistry test day to study; we sat there in a stinky locker room for half the day trying to memorize the periodic table and several formulas quizzing each other throughout the day.  Both of us aced the test but were given zeros when Ms. Brennan found out we had “an unfair advantage” (AKA an extra day to prepare). Soon after this, I was kicked out of the I.B. program for having a 2.4 GPA and over 60 days of absences. I never hid the fact that I was a truant in high school because I thought I was an anarchist communist taoist then. Once I was lectured by the cruel Mr. Richardson for skipping a class – he told my mom that he saw “the path” I’m on and that my future looked grim.  He even threw in a story of a pregnant teen I reminded him of. #mansplainingcirca2001

The punishment for nefarious activity, such as skipping Chemistry class, was Saturday School in which we truants had to clean up the entire campus.  On one such day,  another truant friend Tina and I – stickin’ it to the man –  put on our latex gloves and pretended to work diligently.  Really, we took all of 2 minutes finding full trash cans of which to empty into our bags.  Yeah, we learned our lessons real fast!  In retaliation, and I’m not sure if I need to give Tina credit for this one idea: we took orange cones and rerouted traffic on that Saturday.  The honking was hilarious to us.  And why wouldn’t it be?

Did y’all really think I was the first 5th grader to call someone a bitch?

If you’re still alive and reading this:

Fuck you, Mr. Richardson and Fuck you Ms. Brennan. You were part of the reason I detested school. Today, I’m proud to say I’m more educated than you and less of a jerk too!!

Seven years ago after obtaining our master’s, at graduation, we were told that only about 4% of Latinas obtained a graduate degree.  I remember and wrote about being furious that I got more Facebook “likes” on my changed relationship status (even got some texts and calls from friends and family) than being awarded my degree.  I learned then about the null curriculum of my society.

The proportion of doctorates awarded to Latinx has risen from 3.3% in 1994 to 6.5% in 2014 (National Science Foundation, Dec 2015).  It’s offensive to some to compare obtaining a degree to marriage and/or having a baby.

Alors on sort pour oublier tous les problèmes

Elliot Eisner (1985) wrote that schools “teach” three curricula: the explicit, the implicit, and the null. The explicit curriculum is what we see on papers,  the publicly announced programs of study (ELA, Math, Science, Social Studies). The hidden/implicit curriculum imparts values and expectations generally (i.e. the teacher is the knowledge authority and excellence and failure is measured A, B, C, D, and F). The null curriculum encompasses all the cultural and political statements that are made about what matters in society by excluding content (i.e. genocide happens in the U.S., race is a man-made invention).

I put the sing in single

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Most of my memories about education and educators is that they are self-serving.  Those awful “educators” I (and so many of us) had were control-freaks.  They got in the business not out of passion but out of desire to control and manipulate less experienced people.  What pissed me off the most, and still does, is how elitist some educators are… telling us what we should deem important, demanding that we call them by their titles, telling us one day we’ll agree with their points of view and, above all, the guilt trips.

School is an oppressive institution which functions under oppressive systems of hierarchy and nepotism.  We were once greeted with smiles and handshakes.  Told our adult ideas are valuable – like, literally, some of us were told we’d be paid to do undo what traditional education did to kids.  We all agreed that kids are valuable people too!

Some demand that we live up to their rigid rules and miserable guidelines.

Now I get paid to write about this ^

One of my friends was just explaining to me that “I feel guilty all the time.” I don’t like doing scholarly reading unless I have to. I’d much rather read stuff I like – not related to anything academic. I like to watch tv, lol, and just chill. I think all the hustling in undergrad has left me burnt out that I don’t really want to lead that typical grad student life. Sometimes I don’t think I can argue in an academic argument or defend myself intellectually. I grew up in Chicago and I speak as I always have. I don’t speak “smart” or use big words in everyday conversation and discussing theory bores me to death unless we are in class. Outside of class, lab, or office time I just want to be a regular non academic human being. Talk about current events and societal issues and all of that – YES but in normal non academic language lol. I just want to get my PhD to get a good job (hopefully) once i graduate and support my family financially.”

She’s beautiful.  She is not an INTP personality but we are both defiant and I DIG IT.

I DO NOT FEEL AN OUNCE OF GUILT.  Since starting PhD, things have been rough but life is drastically better in every way.

“A drowning man isn’t picky about who throws him a rope.”


Under fair housing laws, the burden of proving that illegal housing discrimination occurred is always on the victim of discrimination.

I perform best when odds are against me.

My fuck you hoops is heavy

10 films about race

It is difficult to quantify these qualities on a resume. I Loathe rules and guidelines and require a great deal of freedom. Discrimination comes with a smile and a handshake but I’m wearing my Fuck-You-hoops and my blood-red lipstick today. You ain’t got nothing on me. Meet me halfway. I don’t sleep much. I could sleep for 1,000 years…

Truth hurts, needed something more exciting
Bom bom bi dom bi dum bum bay
And that’s the sound of me not calling you back