The Single Track Mind

A regular dose of new music tracks

Tomorrow

The Mexican-American of Tomorrow

The Mexican-American of Tomorrow

Last weekend, I visited my family in south Texas after a long overdue spread from my last trip. We went out to eat at a restaurant and ran into a family friend, Mexican-American, too, and who was, of course, enchanted by my boy, Manuel (Carolina, also featured in this pic, was with her mother visiting other family). When this woman began to talk to Manuel in English, my mom corrected her by instructing her to speak to him in Spanish because he doesn’t understand English. Body language said it all!

She looked at me, his father, with these eyes that made 2 simultaneous statements: 1) what’s wrong with you putting your child at a disadvantage? and 2) what? are you too good to speak American? She gave me a look and made facial gestures that are familiar to those of us who choose to do things differently, and these kinds of acts are offensive to the mainstream thinking of the day. With such physical and unspoken communication,  the body language is meant to say nothing at all while having no intention of being subtle at all of his/her disapproval and confusion for any way of thinking outside the box.

I explained that my sisters and I are at a disadvantage for not having had the ability to speak Spanish when we were young and, likely, I’ll be the only one amongst us that will speak Spanish as we are all adults now. For me, I further explained, it’s important that my children learn the language of our culture in our home while they learn Spanish outside the house. This is America. Of course, they are going to absorb English, like the little sponges they are as children. They are surrounded by it so Spanish is the priority so that they don’t lose their identity as fluent Spanish speakers.

After all, that’s why we are called Mexican, first, and American, second. My children won’t have ambivalent cultural identities; instead, they will pave the way for what it means to be Mexican-American in America, as Hispanics become the majority in the 21st Century.

August 11, 2009 Posted by | Social | 3 Comments

The Single Track Mind, ed. 1

The game plan behind this series is to talk about one of my favorite hobbies – MUSIC!!! I will try to the best of my crazy hectic ability (AMD, UT & family) to provide a weekly sampler plate of the latest music that’s been abuzz in my head.

My flavor of the week is a sibling group from Australia who call themselves, simply, Angus & Julia Stone.  I’m not usually into making comparisons but this folksy-eclectic duo remind me of Neil Young, the White Stripes (in their more abstract songwriting forms), Sam Phillips and the Byrds. Check out their music at: http://www.myspace.com/angusandjuliastone.

I’d like to recommend a really cool show that you can download as a podcast called Sound Opinions. The guys are a bit on the snobbish side when it comes to music but I’ve been accused of the same, and I’m okay with it. We’re helping to keep music honest, super-cool and sharply creative. http://www.soundopinions.org/.

Finally, I recommend that you email your U.S. Congress representatives and voice your concern over the pending merger of Live Nation/Ticketmaster. If the merger goes through, this new fully-bloated company will be a monopoly, and it will be a complete assault on what music should be about – music. http://www.pollstar.com/blogs/news/archive/2009/02/19/650169.aspx

Take care.

February 21, 2009 Posted by | Music, Social | 1 Comment

   

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