Current Mood:  “The Seed (2.0)” by The Roots feat. Cody Chesnutt

2018 has begun oddly. I’m feeling a lot of clarity. I’m centering gratitude.

Best moment thus far: SUBMITTED TWO BOOK CHAPTERs – one by myself – shout out to Dr. B for helping edit – the second with an esteemed peer Dr. G (#WizardPhD).

This is why I came here – PURPOSE EXISTS!!

So, I had my boiled eggs with tangerines and my favorite, hazelnut coffee, while I watched Dexter.  By 11am I was lifting weights at the gym. 20180128_114746This has become my new normal. My body doesn’t resist. A sexy man joined me today as I move to cardio and it dawned on me that have unlearned to dislike body odor. His and mine mixed and I simply just accepted that the smell was our perspiration. Deodorant marketing has taken to explain “scientifically” how our body produces sweat and how to “combat” odor… they’ve even taken to gender their artificial body odor. < That’s among my favorite ads yet I think (for myself). Funny to some, Old Spice is actually one of my preferred artificial odors… sucks for them that they don’t prefer my money.

Unintentionally, I’m living as my father once did. His story was that after he obtained his degrees and found work he went on a Homeric journey back to Ecuador (from NYC) to find a spouse. My mom brags that she was the one who civilized my father. She got him to cut his hair, shave and use shampoo and deodorant. Prior to her, he’d been using lemons – like, literally, cut lemons scrubbed against his body – to wash. Their politics are vastly different. My mother was educated by Catholic nuns who pushed “proper” behavior through Eurocentric etiquette knowledges. To them, there are “correct” (and symmetrical) ways to look and behave. My father was raised by his mestizo community.

Why, of course.  Of course of course!!

Like Papi, this year I am not altering any of my natural hair. That means no cutting, shaving, waxing, ironing, blow-drying, bleaching, or dying.

  1. So take me as I am or have nothing at all

20180128_115411As I exited the gym I noticed the 40 degree and sunny weather. Snapped some photos. Decided to eat at one of my local favorites, Good Truckin’ Diner. Not happening. There was “sign-in” procedure and lines were out the door.

I remembered that I must align my actions to my core beliefs. So to honor my commitment to love this year, I conducted a Google search: “best vegetarian in Michigan.” 2) To love myself, I had to sift through the ones that were actually open and within a 2-hour radius because my 2nd book chapter contribution is due today. Luckily, I have Dr. G on my side, a brilliant and beautiful woman I met my first semester at MSU in a social justice class with the same Dr. B.

What came up was a delicious treat in Novi.

I ate savoring every bit of food and observing beautiful brown people surrounding me – all speaking a tongue I could not decipher. There was an unspoken bond between one of the waiters and myself. He walked by me a few times and seemed to want to say something. After paying the bill, sadly because I couldn’t even finish all the wondrous parts of my meal and didn’t save room for dessert, I heard his voice. Thank you and adios.

A-dios no es algo que suelo decir. I was not raised in any religion. It was clear that the Catholic school my siblings and I attended was a desperate attempt to find “better education.” It was a damn blessing to finally realize in adulthood that my parents lived with conviction. I am witness to their endless care-taking and generosity – not just to us and family but to strangers even.

It’s been difficult to live by their standards because others experience love in different ways. 3) To love others I’m inquiring how others want to be loved.

After my delicious Indian brunch I found a cafe to spend the rest of the day writing. This was lovely to see there (4) point out love[lyness]):

20180128_150749De lo nada, or seemingly out of the blue, I’m surrounded by love again, which means I must commit to dedicate myself (even if only slightly due to #AlbasPhDLifeYr3) to folks who inquire about how I want to be love. Finally, I found mi gente. So, I write to deconstruct my ideas of querer, amar, dar cariño, affection, emotional availability, holding space… there are at least 3 ways of saying “I love you” in Kichwa:

  1. Canda munani
  2. Munayki
  3. Qanta munani

Also, this week I had several fun conversations and learned with a few 3-4th graders at a local Montessori school. The students are learning about “kindness” and I posed the questions “how do we expect people to treat us?” Duh, it was difficult!  I re-directed the convo a few times because the picture book and worksheet given to me for “Wonder” led to some things problematic . With 2 young gals, we connected on being the “little sisters” in our families and loving being annoying to our big sisters who ALL hate touching.  We love touching, especially people who sometimes get irritated by it.

Next, two gals plus 3 guys and I discussed plants!! They were more enthused by other living beings rather than humans from books with redundant themes. The youth got excited when I told them talking to plants helps them grow. They loved it so much, in the tone of “shots shots” (pitbull?) they shouted “grow grow….!!” causing quite the raucous. Heehee. Great success 😉

My awe-full, astute little girlie, my Sofia drew this:


Unrequited love was the theme for a while.

The curly hair is my favorite.

If she were my girl,  I would name her “Rock n’ Roll”…

As a parent, I would rather see my child grow up kind than smart. This stems from, I believe, my inner #peliona.

Soy una peliona
Me apesta las mentiras
le tengo alergia a el engaño
Me cuesta poco oler tu egoism
Con mis argollas grandotas, salio el sol
salio el sooooool
Tables they turn sometimes

cognitive-dissonance-vik-religion-13839521803) Actions that are incongruent with their words. AIN’T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THAT.

My teachers also bombarded us with “The Golden Rule” but didn’t quite foster a 5) culture of nurturance.

Lest we forget that Teachers’ implicit bias against black students starts in preschool

Lots of emerging research can now explain how racial trauma affects quality of life because Scientists Have Started To Tease Out The Subtler Ways Racism Hurts Health

It feels confusing.

Sometimes I’m called calculating, passive aggressive > ok.

There’s no denying the aggressive. 6) My love is revolutionary love.



“…because you speak to me in words and I look at you with feelings.” (Tolstoy)

Ecuador’s rondador is like China’s guzheng.

It sometimes feels like we’re in the Red Scare 2.0

“Somos bravos como la lava que creo esta isla.”

Wednesday, 1am