Sunday, March 29, 2009

Boricua in Texas

Once upon a time, a long time ago when I thought I would grow up to be someone important, I wrote a few short stories. Two of them got published in a book in the mid nineties. My claim to fame is that one of those stories was picked up to be used on a school text book back home. Not that I got much from it, really. A check for $300 about 4 years ago, I think.

Anyway, around the time that my stories were first published, someone tried to interview me. I can't remember who it was or in what context. Those years of my life are kind of a blur. All I remember is someone asked me a question about my voice and whom I represent. And I said I am not speaking for anybody but myself, a middle class female Puerto Rican of a certain age group and educational background. I would never presume that my voice or my writing is all-encompassing and representative of all Puerto Ricans. I can only write/speak from my circumstance. I can only write as Ingrid and for Ingrid, even when I am writing about the world beyond the tip of my nose.

I recall that interview often, when I think about my blog. Lots of people find their way into my blog by looking for the word "boricua" on the web. Some of them are searching for boricuas in Texas. I often wonder if these visitors are disappointed with what they find. I am not keeping a shrine to all things boricua. I am not selling tchotkes with coquíes or Puerto Rican flags in them. I am not usually talking about the latest celebrity scandal on the island. I am neither idolizing, nor am I bashing Americans. And I deliberately choose not to write about partisan politics. In short, I am very much a boricua female (and damn proud of it), but I may not be what they expect.

I do often allude to my native Puerto Rico and some of the cultural aspects that I miss the most. But overall, this blog is very personal in its scope. I write about my life, about what catches my fancy. I write about my family and the trials and triumphs that we go through. Mostly, I use the blog to chart the evolution of my mood, as someone who is prone to depression. However, lately I have been a bit reticent to open up online. Some things just need to be kept offline.


  1. me gustó mucho este comentario. muchas veces me siento muy similar. y sí, son más las cosas que se quedan offline...un beso a todos...

    mira, ya voy adelantando de mi época de Loser, me conseguí un carro de 2 mil pesos, que está nuevo!!!!

  2. You did grow up to be someone important... yourself. :)

    I ended up here by Googling "Puerto Ricans in Texas". I've kept coming back, and I'll continue to do that. I came looking for someone who speaks Spanish the way I'm learning it, not Mexican Spanish. Someone who comes from a cultural background that includes the music and food my husband grew up with. Someone who gives me a glimpse into that culture, but also allows me to see how it blends with everyday, normal life. I didn't want to just learn about boricuas in general, but understand a little better what it's like for my husband to live in Texas, where he's often cut off from a culture he was surrounded by when he lived in a state where he wasn't in such a small minority. The fact that you are not a religious person, and that you are a very intelligent person, makes it comfortable for me to read about your life. I don't always agree with you about politics, but I rarely agree with much of anyone about politics. I'm always very thankfully for how polite you are when you post about politics. And I'm very thankful for you taking the time to explain politics in Puerto Rico to me.

    What I found here is a real person, not just a collection of information or themed merchandise. That's exactly what I wanted.

  3. Ordinario (Kari): Un abrazo y felicidades por lo del carro. Tranquila. Hay que tener fé de que las cosas van a mejorar. Te quiero mucho.

    Kelly: Thank you. I am glad to have you as a reader. I always enjoy reading your comments and the exchanges we have. Hugs.

  4. I express and HOLD BACK what I am comfortable with sharing or NOT sharing on the internet/

  5. I really like your new banner. FAB shots. I know what you mean about some things best kept offline. I have posted some stuff that has opened up a can of worms that I didn't expect. It is often hard to pick how people will react to things. I like your blog as it is - there is always something interesting to read!