Love

My Love For Carol Danvers, Captain Marvel..

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This post is dedicated to Ken Brown, Chris Brown, two individuals who work at “Drawn To Comics” ,a comic shop that I can go in to and talk about Captain Marvel for hours with them, and not seem CRAZY. Thank you to my niece Alexa Aragon, for introducing me to a character I have fallen inlove with, also a big Thank you Chris Claremont, Dave Cockrum,  Kelly Sue Deconnick who have written her as an actual person, Thank you Brian Reed, and all the other writers who have written Carol Danvers and kept her consistent.

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“Have you ever seen a little girl run so far she falls down? There’s an instant, a fraction of a second before the world catches hold of her again… A moment when she’s outrun every doubt and fear she’s ever had about herself and she flies. In that one moment, evey little girl flies. I need to find that again. Like taking a car out into the desert to see how fast it can go, I need to find the edge of me… And maybe, if I fly far enough, I’ll be able to turn around and look at the world… And see where I belong.” – Carol Danvers (Captain Marvel), written by Kelly Sue DeConnick

For those who know me, well, they know Carol Danvers Captain Marvel is my favorite comic book super hero, Constantine (DC Comics) comes in 2nd or 3rd, and Moon Knight, well he comes in 3rd or 2nd.. I also love THE PUNISHER, but people always ask me, Who.. CAPTAIN MARVEL? Carol Danvers? Who is that?

In about 2 years, the movie Captain Marvel will come out and Brie Larson is going to be Carol Danvers. Real talk, I want to be in the movie, even if I am an extra getting killed or something in background. Recently, My brother Max asked me why she is my favorite and I was so passionate and excited to tell him but could not find the words to describe what made her such a BAD A$$!

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The original Captain Marvel (NOT talking about Shazam Superman Knockoff) was this a solider from the alien Kree race named Mar-Vell. He was a Captain so it was not his nickname, it was also his rank. He had some super powers but it couldn’t stop him from getting cancer, which eventually killed him. Anyways, during on his adventures he met Air Force captain Carol Danvers and something happens and it gave her some super powers, eventually she became Ms. Marvel, oh yeah she lost her powers because that mutant by the name of Rogue took them all. No Ms. Marvel.. no Rogue that can fly.. yes, Rogue from the X-men.. She was once A BAD GUY.. or BAD GIRL.. Rogue sucked all of Ms. Marvel’s powers and now Rogue can fly thanks to Carol Danvers. Danvers eventually became an Avenger, a Starjammer (Binary), joins the Avengers again and became Warbird, then Ms. Marvel and after a while Captain Mar-vell died, and she finally got permitted to become CAPTAIN MARVEL. She’s also joined the Guardians of the Galaxy at one point or another.

 

Funny because I discovered Carol Danvers, by accident. In 2012, I bought my niece Alexa a comic book, Avenging Spiderman #9 ! This was the 1st time Carol Danvers assumed the role of Captain Marvel. We both didn’t know though. I had told the comic book shop owner Ken that this issue was important because it featured a new character, Robyn Hood. What we both didn’t see until much later was this was the 1st appearance of Carol Danvers as Captain Marvel.

Avenging Spider-Man 009-000

I didn’t think much of it or Captain Marvel, till later Chris Lopez started talking to me about her. Later, Ken got a shipment of Ms. Marvel #1-15 written by Brian Reed and he gave me 1st crack at buying them, I passed not having $ at the time.

 

As I started reading more and more comic books, I started falling in love with Carol, Ms. Marvel, War Bird, Binary, Captain Marvel and all the other characters she is known as, I said to Ken and some other Comic Book store owners that Carol never really got the credit she deserves and that one day she would. Carol becoming Captain Marvel created a huge change in the comic world and Marvel that no one but Marvel was noticing. Women, young girls were picking up comic books for once. Kelly Sue Deconnick, a woman was writing her comics. A woman writing a woman character, one who understood what it was to be a female and a person. I’m not taking anything away from Brian Reed and Chris Claremont, but. I mean try asking a guy to create makeup for a woman, would a woman buy that makeup? Probably not. She gave the world Carol Danvers prespective through the eyes of a woman, which Carol is and it brought forth a new light of fans.

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Fast forward 4 years, and all of a sudden the Carol Danvers character has been cast by an award winning actress for un upcoming Marvel movie to be released in several years. The Marvel Universe is pushing Carol Danvers on comic book readers and fans like no other character. Marvel has made Danvers center stage of the 2nd Civil War currently happening (Summer 2016) in the Marvel world. Oh did I mention that Captain Marvel being a woman has now somewhat allowed other characters to assume the traditional roles other super heroes once had? For example, Thor is NOW A woman, X23 being a woman and taking the current role for Wolverine, Moon Girl suddenly appeared on the scene, Spider Gwen, Silk.. Fearless Defenders being an all woman team which I would say, is a predecessor to A-Force, who is an all woman team as well.

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Who is Carol Danvers ? A Google search will tell you her basic powers, origins, yadda yadda. You can read about her adventures with the X-Men, the Star jammers, the Avengers, and all other teams out there, yes, we know! I gave you a quick rundown.

What did I see though?

Danvers is extremely loyal to her friends, her morals show the character in depth, but she also has her “personal demons” that really tell a bigger story, one if you’d pay attention you’d also start loving to root for her.

Danvers has battled sexism, especially during the late 70s. She tried getting a job at the Bugle newspaper and Jonah Jameson made her the editor of the Woman Magazine, even though he doesn’t care much for it. Carol turns that magazine in to a financial success. Later Carol visits her mom, dad, but the visit turns very ugly because her father voices his sexiest ideals, cause Carol to leave. Later Carol, as Ms. Marvel saves her dad, not one, but twice, and he refuses to change his attitude toward women. Her mother who sees through Carol’s disguise tell her not to judge her father too harshly.

Carol battles alcoholism. Does someone ever fully recover from being an alcoholic?

I can’t answer that. Oh yeah.

Carol Danvers gets raped. Yes, SHE GETS RAPED!!

It was a huge hush hush hide that Marvel tried to fix, but they did a poor job at it. Just read Avengers #200 or Google “The Rape of Ms. Marvel”  ! Think of the mentality a person who has been raped constantly has to live with on a daily basis? They deal with it every day, aside from all the other bad and negative things in life that try to shake us, so Carol Danvers dealing with all these insecurities even before having to fight some bad guys, I mean, come on.. I see strength, I see a survivor, not a victim.

Someone on another forum said ” You see, Carol can beat back all the super power threats she wants, but her greatest fights are fights many go through every day.”

I had to agree.

This is the reason she is my favorite, but because she can inspire as she has inspired me. NOW YOU KNOW why I’m team Captain Marvel. Her values, her principles, her ethics, humanity. Carol Danvers, costume or not, she is amazing to me.

One local comic book store owner in Phoenix told me, “You know, she’s the next big thing in Marvel, they are just letting her loose and giving her so much power..” I shook my head and replied.. “No, she’s been here for years, no one has ever really ever paid real attention though..”

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A post. A spark. A FRIEND. A Fragmented self.

You can spend the rest of your life with me... but I can't spend the rest of my life with you. Some things are worth getting your heart broken for, we just got to figure out what those things are.. . I'm going to miss you so much.

You can spend the rest of your life with me… but I can’t spend the rest of my life with you. Some things are worth getting your heart broken for, we just got to figure out what those things are.. I’m going to miss you so much.

Today is a dark day in my life. My dog, Ruby, a Shih-Tzu died in my hands. She was run over by some jack-wagon going over 80 miles an hour in a neighborhood. She was not on a leash, but she was so afraid of cars and car noises so she wouldn’t cross the street without me giving her permission. The car who hit her, was going over 80 miles per hour that even a person getting hit by the car would have been seriously injured if not dead. The car not only failed to stop after I yelled repeatedly at it SLOW DOWN, it kept going eastbound on 54th Avenue and State. I turn to the side of the road and I see Ruby rolling in discomfort and crying in Pain. She got hit.

I am not taking this well.

I’ve spent the last 108 weeks spoiling her. The dog was given to my mother, but most of all, it was my dog. I fed her, I gave her fresh water, I walked her around the block without a leash. She wouldn’t go in to people’s yards because I’d say “sidewalk” and she’d trot on the sidewalk. I’d say “Alley” and she knew I was taking her around half the block to the “alley” so I could throw out the Trash. We took extended walks in the late evening that my neighbors came to know who Ruby was and that she obeyed me. Many neighbors would even buy her dog treats so they could give her when I would bring her around. She was my motivation to go take walks after dinner. Ruby talked to me and I talked to Ruby. We understood each other. I’d ask her, “Do you want food,?” no reply. “Do you want me to take you outside?” I’d ask her, no reply. “Do you want water?” and she’d turn her head sideways. “Do you want me to cut some carrots for you?” She would bark. So I’d cut carrots in thin slices for her which I put in her food. Sometimes she’d just eat the carrots but not the food. I’d give her bits of lettuce but she’d spit it out. She liked also me cutting her thin apple slices. I would clean her eyes often, I’d personally groom her myself. She would bark at me, and if I had my feet down she would position herself and “bump me with her behind” to know she wanted to go outside.

All my neighbors got to know my dog. The children would run to her wanting to carry her when I took her out on walks in the late evening. She loved children a lot.  I’d be inside and yell to her “Outside..? and she would come racing to the door. At the dinner table she would position herself at everyone’s feet waiting for some heavenly treat to fall to her, and when nothing did, I’d share a carrot or a piece of sliced ham with her. Ruby was my shadow. She’d wait for me by the door, often my family goes on trips out of town and I’d choose not to go on those trips to spend time with her.

I am hurting right now. This is the price I am paying for over 2 years of unconditional love, companionship, and loyalty. Ruby loved me There were times when I’d feel something licking my feet in the middle of the night, only to find out she jumped over 30 inches on to my bed to wake me up to take her outside. As all my friends know, when we went out to eat, I often ordered something with fries, or something with meat (hot dog, sub, or burger) so I could have something to take home and share with Ruby. Ruby was the only thing I ever shared my fries with.

Today, this morning, I got out of bed, took her outside, then I went and lay on the sofa. She cuddled up and slept next to me on the Sofa . If my mom would have seen it, she would have killed me for allowing her to do so. All day she followed me around. Around 7:40pm, I turned on my radio and laid in bed. She jumped up and started bumping me. I knew she wanted to go outside and since it was cool enough, I agreed. I walked across the street as she followed me like a shadow. After briefly running in my sister’s yard, as she most liked to do, and roll in a patch of grass, I forgot I had left the water on at the tree. So I called to Ruby to come, Ruby was scared of water though. I looked both directions, no traffic, and sprinted across the street. Ruby was still rolling around in patch of grass and then noticed I was gone and started walking toward me from across the street. At the moment, the speeder went by.

Ruby and I, she was the most loyal thing to me in this world. It felt she loved me more then she loved herself.

Ruby and I, she was the most loyal thing to me in this world. It felt as if she loved me more then she loved herself.

This hurts so much..

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Being a 12 in “Cardinal Country”

So many people often ask me how can I be a Seahawks fan, also known as 12s or 12th man and also live in Arizona. They ask how come I am not an Arizona Cardinals Fan, whose fans are known as “The Bird Gang.”

Seahawks, Seattle, Retro, Vintage, Frisbee

Mom and Dad gave me a frisbee similar to this on Christmas as a child, except mine had the words “Seattle” above, and “Seahawks” on the bottom.

To get that answer, one must rewind back in time. One of my earliest recollections of the Christmas holiday was when I was about a little kid about 6 or 7. That year I had so desperately wanted a Gobots or Voltron toy for Christmas. I wanted to be coolest kid on the block by having one of those. Instead, I was given a white pearly Frisbee with a silver Seattle Seahawks logo in the center of it.   The logo was a bird made of blue and green. The Frisbee wasn’t a cool Voltron robot that I so badly wanted, maybe my parents couldn’t give me much at the time, but it was probably at that time  that I became a Seahawks fan. I was a semi-fan of the Miami Dolphins, probably because my own father was a fan of Dan Marino and I always wanted to make Papa proud! As I went on to grade school, my school classmates, well they were Cowboys, Raiders, and 49ers fans. Phoenix did not have a team yet.  So I rooted semi for both the Hawks and Dolphins.

So my memories at the Seahawks at that time? I had plenty! Kenny Easley was the 1st player I remember from the Seahawks. He was a safety and was #45. Oh does Brian Bosworth name ring a bell? He signed a 10-year $11 million rookie contract. I clearly remember that. Anyways, some guy named Bo Jackson on Monday Night Football embarrassed him on a 90+ yard touchdown run, as Bo ran in to the locker room tunnel. I didn’t mind because Bo Jackson also played Major League Baseball and he embarrassed everyone in both sports, but I especially Bosworth, because “The Boz” as he was known, kept saying how much he was going to contain Bo Jackson. Oh, the fans nicknamed them the Seattle Sea-scabs because of a player strike shorten season.

Other players bring me memories who bring some memories back were Cortez Kennedy, Rick Mierer, David Krieg, Joey Gallowway,  I remember the Seahawks drafting Mark McGuire’s tall 6 foot 8 inch tall brother, Dan McGuire. My friends and I still get a chuckle every so often when we mention that him.

The 1992 team? Oh, that was brutal. Only 2 wins! They played a Monday Night Football game that year in Seattle and won in overtime. 14 losses that year! Oh yeah, the Seahawks beat the Phoenix Cardinals that year in Tempe as well. The Seahawks wouldn’t be back on Monday Night Football till 1999, and Monday Night Football would not return to Seattle till 10 years later in 2002. Tough times because everyone at school tuned in to Monday Night Football no matter who your team was, but sometimes I felt alone knowing my team was not being shown on tv. When the Seahawks won their first Super Bowl I thought a lot about that 1992 team. I remember being taunted and made fun of at school. In school, people still liked all those other teams, the 49ers, the Raiders, The Cowboys. If you didn’t have a starter jacket with one of those teams, you weren’t cool.

This was the typical fan base every week at Tempe Sun Devil Stadium when they were the Phoenix Cardinals.. It has taken time for Arizona to grow its fan base, maybe because "many" fans weren't even born in the late 80s. Regardless, I stay true to the Seahawks.

This was the typical fan base every week at Tempe Sun Devil Stadium when they were the Phoenix Cardinals.. It has taken time for Arizona to grow its fan base, maybe because “many” fans weren’t even born in the late 80s. Regardless, I stay true to the Seahawks.

Somewhere in those years, Phoenix got a team going through an identity crisis.They were named the Phoenix Cardinals, played in the NFC East, and played in Tempe Arizona. I remember going to one game in a half empty stadium. I only went to that game because an AFC team was playing an NFC. My dad wanted to see Dan Marino and the Miami Dolphins. I stopped watching professional football around then, I had fallen in love with baseball. Actually baseball had always been my first love, but I still remembered my Seahawks from Seattle from time to time and watched them play whenever they came out on TV. Later the Phoenix Cardinals would become the Arizona Cardinals and move to Glendale. I told you they went through and identity crisis. Glendale already had a Cardinals team though, The Glendale High School Cardinals, the high school I went too.

I remember several days after my 18th birthday, in December 1998, watching on tv a fake TD by Vinny Testaverde and getting robbed of a playoff spot by The Jets. This brought back the instant replay because of this incident. Oh, can’t forget the logo being updated in 2002, then to be updated again 10 years later.

I had a lot of fun ragging on my brother in law team, the Cowboys, when Tomy Romo botched that extra point snap giving us the win in the playoffs in 2006

I remember losing Super Bowl XL against the Steelers, and the Refs. In fact, NFL has named that calls of that game being #8 of the Top 10 controversial calls ever, by refs.  Four years later, the referee Bill Leavy admitted and apologized to Seattle for messing up several calls during that game. Thanks Leavy, it was only the biggest game yet to Seattle. I think the biggest controversial call though was in 2012 when replacement refs were being used, Seattle was playing Green Bay in Seattle and Russell Wilson threw what many now refer to as called a “Fail Mary” ! Both Green Bay’s Jennings and Golden Tate from the Seahawks caught the ball in the air, was it a touchdown or interception? The call went towards Seattle and the refs rushed out of the stadium. Ha, the refs owed The Seahawks one and it seems to give them that one. I think though, had the game been in Green Bay the call would have gone the other way. No way were the refs getting out of Seattle alive if they didn’t side with The Seahawks on that call.

Later that year, The Seahawks played the Cardinals in what was supposed to be a bird fight. The Seahawks won 58-0 which was the biggest margin of victory in Seahawks franchise history, and it was also the biggest margin of defeat in Cardinals franchise history. Guess what? I was there in person, as the game was played in Seattle. It was the 3rd largest margin victory in the modern NFL.

The Seahawks beat the Cardinals 58-0 which was the biggest margin of victory in Seahawks franchise history, and it was also the biggest margin of defeat in Cardinals franchise history. I was there.

The Seahawks beat the Cardinals 58-0 which was the biggest margin of victory in Seahawks franchise history, and it was also the biggest margin of defeat in Cardinals franchise history. I was there at that game in Seattle.

Many fans have joined the Arizona Bandwagon or converted to the #BirdGang since this photo was taken in 1989. Regardless, I stay true to the Seahawks. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

Many fans have joined the Arizona Bandwagon or converted to the #BirdGang since this photo was taken in 1989. Regardless, I stay true to the Seahawks.
(Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

People now a days call me a Seattle bandwagon fan, many not knowing I have a long time relationship with the Seahawks team as I consider myself 12th man. There fans who keep it classy with me, like my cousin Hector Sandoval who is a season ticket holder for the Cardinals since the 1980s who always wishes me and my team well, he knows how long I’ve been a fan. Occasionally, when I’m in Seattle, I’ll wear a red Cardinals hoodie, but the Arizona Cardinals are not my team. I did go to Glendale High School in the city of Glendale Arizona, home of the Glendale Cardinals. I do recall a lot of Cowboys, Raiders, and 49ers fans jump up on that Arizona bandwagon in the 2000s. I don’t hate you or your team, maybe you weren’t old enough to decide for yourself what team to root for, and just because they are not my team don’t mean I won’t cheer for them. In 2008 I rooted for the Arizona Cardinals in the Super Bowl against the Steelers. Yet, becoming an Arizona Cardinals fan now would make me a bandwagon fan.

The Seahawks winning the Super Bowl in 2014 was the pinnacle point for the football team I cheer for. Today, the Seahawks return to the Super Bowl, in my hometown of Glendale Arizona, after hosting an extremely exciting comeback win in overtime against the Green Bay Packers. My friends know how much I hate having facial hair, but I  haven’t shaved since the Seahawks last lost over 9 weeks ago. People say the Seahawks fans are obnoxious, when it comes to our team, and people fail to realize that it’s been years full of pent up frustrations, many of us have been behind a team who has had a bunch of downs and now that we are winning we are all making noise in many ways. We can’t get loud when our team is not performing, but it is beautiful to know the pieces have been coming together as of late. I’ve been a Seahawks fan for a long time, there have been many sad seasons for me, lots of downs and very few ups. I am also critical of my Seahawks, if they lose, no excuses, they just didn’t perform or execute. As they always say “Any given Sunday!”

To think that a Christmas gift when I received that Seahawks Frisbee would start a chain reaction of memories that I still have with me today. Thank you Mom and Dad.

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Amor Revolucionario – Revolutionary Love

This is something I love to share with my friends every Valentine’s Day since 2003, maybe 2004 when  I read it in the “Column of the Americas” The author  is Patrisia Gonzales, so much gratitude to her for capturing a fraction of a sentiment that I often feel yet unable to form words and express.

Amor Revolucionario – Revolutionary Love

By Patrisia Gonzales – pgonza@email.arizona.edu

I once fell in love with a voice over the radio that woke me up each morning with words of love for his people.

I once loved a man because he could sing 101 songs in the fields as he worked as a farmworker.

I loved another because he had a laugh that embraced all those around him, though he had been tortured.

These men, I loved for their acts. I loved them, as I have loved others, for the stories they gave me. They were not meant nor destined for romantic love. I shared with them “revolutionary love.”

And then I began to love a man page by page, from a book he wrote about surviving death and disappearance. His revolutionary love called out to me, and I married him. Revolutionary love does not have to lead to romance, though when the two arrive together, their marriage makes the relationship a destiny. This alchemy of revolution of spirit and matter and love has helped us endure the hard times in a relationship that seemed to defy reason. Learning to love became my act against oppression.

Mexican freedom-fighter Benita Galeana first taught me about revolutionary love. She was nearing 90 and had a houseful of men and women who adored her and pampered her. Emissaries from freedom struggles the world over paid her visits. Of the men, especially, she’d say, “Ellos me tienen amor revolucionario!” (They have revolutionary love for me!)

Che Guevara once said that true revolutionaries were motivated by love. While living in Mexico City, I got to shake Nelson Mandela’s hands after his release from prison. Madiba’s hands were big and strong, and I felt the revolutionary love for his people that kept him alive while imprisoned for decades on Robben Island.

Even those of us who are not freedom fighters can love in a revolutionary way because of our love for doing what is just and good. “Amor revolucionario” is the love I have for the people organized to transform their conditions and for all people anywhere who are treated inhumanely. It is a love for freedom and a passion for a different kind of life than what’s accepted as normal.

Once, while having dinner with some comprades, we had an intense discussion about acting with love. They said they did things with love. I said I cannot love everyone, but as a Buddhist, I can have compassion for everyone. Love, for me, is inspired by some kind of deeper relationship. But I do love certain people, sometimes from first sight, because of how they live. I love men and women with revolutionary love because they give me hope for the possibility of change. I love them as brothers and sisters, and sometimes not at all like that, but as simply men and women who dare take a stand.

Perhaps revolutionary love is biochemical and molecular and releases endorphins like romantic love and chocolate. And it is deeply spiritual. In this country, romantic love and lust are glamorized by Hollywood. It’s a sugary love, scantily clad and drunk with illusions that allow people to accept the deceit of comforts. Revolutionary love is coarse dark chocolate, ground with cinnamon and chile, and a truth that makes you naked. And it’s just a bit bitter.

Revolutionary love, like Love, can sting. It can keep you up at night because of unrequited ideals. You can go hungry because of it. It can blind you with anger, causing you to strike out and judge others because you can no longer tolerate life’s contradictions (so why can they?). Or because what you have sacrificed for what seems impossible and illusive. It can drive you crazy — I know many who have succumbed to what Roberto calls “revolutionary madness.”

I believe our lives are a love story — to love ourselves, to love what we do, and to search for purpose so that we can love how we live. For those of us who have survived injustices and violence, to love is a primal, everyday act against injustice. For all revolutionary love leads back to our souls for the revolution that begins inside of us, so that we can begin to love, and change

Categories: Education, Love, Music, People, Poem, politics | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

LOVE YOURSELF and LOVE OTHERS!

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I am not surprised when I login to Facebook and I see an average of 5-30 people requesting me to be there friend on Facebook. I push myself to talk with 5 complete strangers in Public everyday.

This is an image of  something I see constantly see every time I log in to Facebook, I am happy but it was not always that way.

Some of the people who are reading this know my story of high school, how I got kicked out, how one teacher said I would never amount to anyhing, how I battled depression for over 5 years. While growing up, even past high school, I felt alone because I had high standards that I never compromised. I hated myself for a long time because I had a tough time making friends. It hurt when I felt I was in a lot of people’s corners but no one was in my own corner. There were people who did believe in me though, so I trudged on.

In college, things changed when people actually respected me for my values that I had. It still wasn’t easy. I worked hard and pushed myself so hard to learn how to really communicate with other people because I had no social skills whatsoever. I had to work at my personality, but I already knew who I was so it was not hard but I just needed to learn to refine my personality. Since then, I have had the opportunity to meet a lot of people from all walks of life. People interest me. I want to know what makes them happy, what makes them tick, what motivates them to get up every morning, or how is it came to be that we crossed paths.

Every day I try and have 5 interactions in public with complete strangers. Lots who want to keep in contact with me, so I am not surprised when I login to Facebook and I see an average of 5-30 people requesting me to be there friend. It is not so much talking with people, but listening to what they have to say. 80% of my interaction is body language and listening. LISTENING TO WHAT OTHERS HAVE TO SAY, LISTENING TO WHAT THEY WANT TO SHARE WITH ME IS REAL IMPORTANT TO ME. The other 20% is telling you the truth. Easier said than done. I’ve hurt people along the way, and I am sorry and I am trying to be a better person. Sometimes learning to accept defeat has allowed me to actually win in the long term.

As I myself have had demons I have faced, I am sure everyone out there has their own demons which they are fighting, whether it be at school, work, family trouble, or personal ones. Sometimes people feel that they have no one to turn too, or feel completely lost and need someone to loan them an ear. I am always open to talk to someone who needs that ear, I am also willing to get in your corner to cheer you on in your battle with your demon. I mean just imagine me in your corner shouting instructions on what to do or cheering you on “GO (insert you name here) GO! GO (insert your name here) GO!”

Even if you need me to remember you in my prayers for inspiration on a test, or that something in your life may go well, please let me know.

I may not know you all personally, but what I do know is that all of you are strong and wonderful individuals that all deserve happiness and respect, if you really want it, you will find it as I have.

LOVE YOURSELF, and LOVE OTHERS!

I am so grateful for so many of you who continue to push me to be a better person. I do pray for a lot of you, whether you know it or not.  Thank you!

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You are blessed more then you know.

“You know yourself better than anyone… …yet others will know you in a way you simply can’t imagine.”

I try and live life to its utter most fullest, once I make my mind up, I go at it full speed, but it has been real challenging the last several weeks, I’ve been dreading my job. I have felt so stagnant.  My puppy died a month ago, and deep down inside, I miss him. Just spending time with my puppy taught me so much on how to live life.

“Always be excited, always be in the moment, run full speed when you are free.”

Even when I was mad at it, my puppy loved me unconditionally.

Love others unconditionally.

This past week, I was having moments when I wanted to strip my inner most emotions that I felt in my core and share them with someone. Those who know me best, know that I am arrogant, loveable and humble all at the same time.

Today I freaked out when I heard about what happened in Moore Oklahoma. I have a great friend who lives there, and she was posting on her facebook how the Tornado was headed toward her house and she was hiding in the closet. After that, no news or updates from her on facebook. I completely panicked for a while till she texted me back. For some reason, when I got the news she was ok, all of a sudden I could see, feel, taste and smell again, but most important, I could breathe properly again.

Tonight, I will lay in a bed thinking how blessed I am to have a home over my head, yet I am sure I will definitely lose sleep knowing that a great friend of mine since 2005, has completely lost everything. I am blessed, yet my thoughts are completely with her and her family. My thoughts are with the parents who lost children; my thoughts are with friends of the missing.

Tomorrow I will go to work, and I will take pride and joy in a job I have been dreading so much the last several weeks. I am alive. Anyone reading this, I hope you take my next paragraph to heart.

“Give HUMANITY something to remember you by, whether it be a work of art, a feat of arms, or simply sheer force of your personality. Hug your children, or your parents, or someone you care about, or call someone you care about, and tell them you LOVE them. There’s always a reason to smile. FIND IT!!  After all, you’re really luck just to be alive. Life is short.

I hope when I text you saying that I’m thinking of you, that it has some meaning to you.

Today, is one of those days, one of those moments that I so often say or talk about to my friends everyday.. You are blessed in more ways then you know..

-Gabriel Cruz

“Con Safos Y Sin Fin” / With Safety and without an end..

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[Poem] Los que me conocen (Those who know me..)

I wrote this while I was in college back in 2004. I went through some of my old writing today and felt it would be perfect to share. The mural piece was one I did in the backyard wall facing the alley. It took about 6 hours to do it. It stayed unpainted for over 5 years. It read “Xican@ Power”
xicanopower

Los que me conocen

By Gabriel Cruz
Inspired by the words of Salvador Reza and Livi Alcaraz

Students I see, all neutralized
Status quo they all want to be,
No one involved in la politica
No one involved in the community
Others, Utilizing rhetoric of change
Without living the words they say,
They may have surrendered early,
Some took months, others took years

I enlisted for the need to rebel.
High school, Colleges, universities,
Never formulas for consciousness
They teach and I learn, I learn but I don’t do
I URGE THIS EDUCATIONAL REVOLUTION
Yet, Alienated I still feel,

Oppressed you say you were?
Rejected I was by my associates because of my Mormon religion
I feel discarded by my religion because of my Chicano culture.
I endured with cruelty from both sides,
because the choices of my family
Within MEChA, I found a family that I can trust
MEChA, rather than be the ones
I need to encourage,
helped me find a way,
by giving me encouragement
Students with a greater faith,
Full of unconditional love,
just the way I am,
not intimidated by my looks,
not intimidated by my being
any stupider, or smarter, richer, or poorer,
hombre, mujer,
just as I am.
Gente, Familia, who I can trust
I FEEL THIS EDUCATIONAL REVOLUTION
MEChistAS, Ellos me conocen

I look at people,
Quacks telling quacks
what they can and cannot quack
Professors, Politicians, People who work
Some of them honest,
Other worse than factory workers,
Creating enslavement,
’Be part of THIS MOVEMENT’ I shout,
Yet I feel for many, it is too late,
They are afraid to write and say
what they think,
Afraid to lose their acquired needs
The system has divided them

Others with constant mental masturbation
about actually being a part of something special,
Yet they are the first ones to flee
people talking for the people without knowing
the people they are supposedly they talk for
Since lying is of no concern to them,
They can go far in this world.
Worse than a factory worker I say…
I FIGHT FOR AN EDUCATIONAL REVOLUTION

I use my school as a tool to understand
How this system operates,
of them trying to break me down
taught to me daily in the classroom.
yet the education of mi gente me enseña
our relation to the cosmos,
is a means of resistance to submission,
wanting to know the understanding of ourselves
in relation to the creation.
these elements of my real roots,
my ancestor’s past, not the imagined ones,
I SUPPORT THIS EDUCATIONAL REVOLUTION!

And the beast,
of this system
constantly shaking its head
day and night, night and day
swatting me psychologically
leading me deeper in to despair
am I the last one left?
Salvador knows me,
He tells me,
‘Don’t let them take your
tortillas, frijoles, language
ni tu cultura
The Cause is not dead!
The movement is not a rally,
march, not even an uprising.’
Salvador Reza , el me conoce,

Day laborers, journoleros,
living like true warriors
Mis hermanos, true inspiration,
They shine in the day and glow at night.
I want to fight for them,
and for so much more,
Trying to provide for their families,
They survive the daily grinds,
Not having romantic ideas about their struggle.
They are not the same factory workers,
they criticize the same system,
ones where they want to be counted
part of a society that won’t accept them
cheap labor they are for others
But because their accomplishment
they are so much adored
There pride and dignity shows
True Heroism
Their spirit geared only to struggle,
and every struggle shows that
their spirits flow clear and unbound.
I NEED TO BE PART OF AN EDUCATIONAL REVOLUTION

The Movement was not destroyed
The Chicano part was only one manifestation of it
Mr. Reza teaches me,
‘The government, didn’t destroy it,
Those who bought in to the system
Made it crumble by lumpen attitudes
these so called leaders have shown.’

Years later, I take what is left
and I want to re-mold it,
remold, so the system won’t smash it

We are students,
Students, stronger than many others
Chicano Y Chicana Soliders
Saving each other from evil forces
Livi tells me,
That he is the most dangerous person in the world,
He says I too can be dangerous.
I ask how dangerous he is and he says
‘I’m more dangerous than a drug dealer,
More dangerous than any gang member
more than dangerous than any Mafioso,
I ask.. who, what?
Livi says,
“An Educated Chicano”
and I realize…
I AM THIS EDUCATIONAL REVOLUTION!
Livi, el me conoce

The movement,
Politics, Spirituality, Economy, and Defense
Four elements that give us life.
Aligning myself with the earth, the sun and the stars,
then immersing myself with the people who are a manifestation
of these elements, easier said than done.
MEChistAs, Salvador Reza, Livi,

Ellos me conocen

Categories: Education, Love, People, Poem, politics | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Motorcycle Diaries: A book review

Che Guevera I am not sure if I wanted to write the words to tell of Ernesto Che Guevara’s experience as much as I wanted to personally jump on my own motorcycle with him and his friend Alberto Granado throughout South America.

Nevertheless, I was invited along to join them on an epic journey detailed with a beautifully crafted descriptive words full of emotion.

I first picked up “The Motorcycle Diaries”  By Ernesto Che Guevara in 1997 as a Junior in high school. I had picked up a newspaper to learn that Che’s remains had been located in Bolivia and returned to Cuba where a memorial had been made for him. I stared at the iconic picture of the individual I had so often seen on posters, shirts and other items, yet not knowing much of the man, so I picked up the book, read it, learning it had only been published 4 years earlier. I being a teenager and knowing all about the world, I didn’t really appreciate the treasure gem that was in my hands at the time.

Now in 2012, 15 years later, as I have matured, I am grateful to have revisited this marvelous work which I now craved to liberate my personal being for an adventure.

Guevara in his book, gives readers an inquisitive look at his 7 month trip with Albert Granado throughout South America on a motorcycle, yet 2 months in to the journey, somewhere in Chile, the motorcycle known as ‘La Poderosa,’ — ‘The Powerful (Feminine) One’ finally brakes down to no longer function. Yet with the determination to finish a set goal, Che and his friend Alberto would continue their travels in to visiting 5 more countries on foot, hitching a ride on boat or truck describing their peril, with little or money, and consistent health problems Che experienced.

It was somewhere in Chapter 17, “La Sonrisa de La Gioconda” — La Gioconda’s Smile, that I noticed a huge transformation and what seemed to be the beginning of the evolution of Guevara’s iconic spirit.

Guevara being a student of medicine to be a doctor, and also having the condition of asthma, describes a visit with an old woman also that has asthma and a heart condition. He describes in great detail how when a ‘doctor is conscious of his complete powerlessness that he longs for change; a change to prevent the injustice of a system.” He goes on to share with selflessness some of the asthma medicine he had with the old woman.

Guevara would go on to continue to attempt to invoke as much emotion he felt during this visit through the remainder of the book. He starts to meet people and comes to the conclusion that it is not only people but nature itself that suffer from great injustice.

During his last days of his 7 month journey, Guevara’s passion to take action in his personal beliefs, after listening to the doctrine of an old man he encountered in Caracas Venezuela. He lays awake long after the conversation and it is very apparent that his soul has made a choice that will shape the rest of his life.

After reading this book, I found myself going back to my personal journal, where I spent several months of several summers on the United State-Mexico border aiding people with food, water, and first aid treatment as they crossed the hot Arizona desert in search of a better life and opportunity. Though the journey was far different, the emotion I felt that Guevara described very much parallel what he wrote.

I give Che Guevara’s book The Motorcycle Diaries 5 out of 5 stars.

Categories: Book, Education, Love, People, politics | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Amor Revolucionario – Revolutionary Love

I often say it,  Revolutionary Love.. Amor Revolucionario.. Inin otik chichike kanoche nin toyolo — This I write/share this from my heart

Amor Revolucionario
(Revolutionary Love)
By Patrisia Gonzales

I once fell in love with a voice over the radio that woke me up each morning with words of love for his people.

I once loved a man because he could sing 101 songs in the fields as he worked as a farmworker.

I loved another because he had a laugh that embraced all those around him, though he had been tortured.

These men, I loved for their acts. I loved them, as I have loved others, for the stories they gave me. They were not meant nor destined for romantic love. I shared with them “revolutionary love.”

And then I began to love a man page by page, from a book he wrote about surviving death and disappearance. His revolutionary love called out to me, and I married him. Revolutionary love does not have to lead to romance, though when the two arrive together, their marriage makes the relationship a destiny. This alchemy of revolution of spirit and matter and love has helped us endure the hard times in a relationship that seemed to defy reason. Learning to love became my act against oppression.

Mexican freedom-fighter Benita Galeana first taught me about revolutionary love. She was nearing 90 and had a houseful of men and women who adored her and pampered her. Emissaries from freedom struggles the world over paid her visits. Of the men, especially, she’d say, “Ellos me tienen amor revolucionario!” (They have revolutionary love for me!)

Che Guevara once said that true revolutionaries were motivated by love. While living in Mexico City, I got to shake Nelson Mandela’s hands after his release from prison. Madiba’s hands were big and strong, and I felt the revolutionary love for his people that kept him alive while imprisoned for decades on Robben Island.

Even those of us who are not freedom fighters can love in a revolutionary way because of our love for doing what is just and good. “Amor revolucionario” is the love I have for the people organized to transform their conditions and for all people anywhere who are treated inhumanely. It is a love for freedom and a passion for a different kind of life than what’s accepted as normal.

Once, while having dinner with some comprades, we had an intense discussion about acting with love. They said they did things with love. I said I cannot love everyone, but as a Buddhist, I can have compassion for everyone. Love, for me, is inspired by some kind of deeper relationship. But I do love certain people, sometimes from first sight, because of how they live. I love men and women with revolutionary love because they give me hope for the possibility of change. I love them as brothers and sisters, and sometimes not at all like that, but as simply men and women who dare take a stand.

Perhaps revolutionary love is biochemical and molecular and releases endorphins like romantic love and chocolate. And it is deeply spiritual. In this country, romantic love and lust are glamorized by Hollywood. It’s a sugary love, scantily clad and drunk with illusions that allow people to accept the deceit of comforts. Revolutionary love is coarse dark chocolate, ground with cinnamon and chile, and a truth that makes you naked. And it’s just a bit bitter.

Revolutionary love, like Love, can sting. It can keep you up at night because of unrequited ideals. You can go hungry because of it. It can blind you with anger, causing you to strike out and judge others because you can no longer tolerate life’s contradictions (so why can they?). Or because what you have sacrificed for what seems impossible and illusive. It can drive you crazy — I know many who have succumbed to what Roberto calls “revolutionary madness.”

I believe our lives are a love story — to love ourselves, to love what we do, and to search for purpose so that we can love how we live. For those of us who have survived injustices and violence, to love is a primal, everyday act against injustice. For all revolutionary love leads back to our souls for the revolution that begins inside of us, so that we can begin to love, and change

Categories: Education, Love, Music, politics | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

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