Showing posts from March, 2012

Chamorro Cultural Fest--A Party I'll Never Forget!

It’s been 5 days since CHE’LU’s Chamorro Cultural Fest in San Diego and I believe I’m physically recovered. Having Guam Books and Beads there for its second year was wonderful.

I met many friends, relatives and supporters. My favorite encounters were with former JFKHS students. I feel a sense of security in our heritage when I see that they have grown into successful adults with families and some with the cutest nenis ever!

The fest was buzzing from sunrise to sunset and with the dedicated Board of Directors and committee volunteers our mission was accomplished:
Chamorro Hands in Education Links Unity (CHE’LU) is dedicated to the Chamorro community by strengthening our native language, culture and health through education.
I was happy to see the enthusiasm of vendors, many skeptical of their first time at the fest and later hearing wonderful feedback about their experience. Having Marissa Borja and John Damian from Pacific Home and Garden on Guam cover the fest was a great reprise. C…

This Blog Entry is a Shameless Attempt to Solicit Votes for My Book, Attitude 13! Go, Tritons!

“You create your opportunities by asking for them.”--Shakti Gawain
With that said, I’m casting my talaya (fishing net) via the inter-“net” to garner votes for my book, Attitude 13: A Daughter of Guam’s Collection of Short Stories (2010 Authorhouse).

My Alma mater, University of Guam is celebrating its 60th Anniversary and to commemorate this, they are selecting “60 for 60” books for their Robert F. Kennedy Library. In their words, “Help by voting for book titles that you believe shares the history, culture, literature, and life of Guam or Micronesia.”

I found out my book was nominated because a poetic colleague, Craig Santos Perez posted it on Facebook. (Please BOTA for him too! Under the GUAM section, "from unincorporated territory" by Craig Santos Perez (2008 and 2010) [poetry]). Curious, I wanted to see if Attitude 13 or Sirena, or my mali—Alison Taimanglo Cuasay’s book Tasi and Matina made the nomination list (you can add these titles to the suggestion portion of the sur…

Happy Birthday to Me?

"It takes a long time to grow young."--Pablo Picasso
Okay, I’m 38 years old. I remember being 13 and thinking, “Eww, 30-somethings are so old!” But, here I am and I feel like I’m still growing as a person. Does that ever stop? At this point, I don’t think so. Now, I look at 13 year olds and think, “Aww, they’re so young!” I often feel so sad when I hear of a twenty something on the news losing their life, thinking, “Wow, he’s still a baby!” I guess that makes Justin Bieber a zygote to me.
Well, being from Guam and knowing that they are one day ahead, I’ve had the blessings of birthday well-wishers for two days straight, and I love it. It’s amazing how a simple greeting from someone on your Facebook wall can make you smile, especially if it’s from someone on your list you deemed dormant since you and he or she have not made any contact aside from being on each other’s list. I’ve spent the last day and a half thanking each person with a comment.
So, I have much to be thankful f…

On Being Chamorro...

“Fine manners need the support of fine manners in others.”
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

This is my personal take on being Chamorro. It’s not a matter of “how much” Chamorro I am—although there have been many times when I had to prove my percentage, but for clarity, my late father is Chamorro and my mother is Korean. I grew up on Guam and was essentially raised in a Chamorro household with my wonderful mother adopting, implementing and educating us in the ways of being Chamorro. Don’t get me wrong, kim chee was and is a staple in our home. And many of my self-deprecating and accommodating manners are ingrained in my DNA from being Asian, and I love it.

Being a part of CHE’LU, Chamorro Hands in Education Links Unity, has been an ethnic lifesaver for me--one who married a Chamorro man and left the island in 2004. I feared leaving the island because I didn’t know a life outside of it. I was comfortable in my teaching career. And because of cultural norms, I was fine having my mom and dad living i…