Día de los Muertos (Final Project, 2 of 3)



I remember when I attended a Día de los Muertos celebration for the first time—it was for a college class field trip; we went to Self Help Graphics, a Mexican-American/Latino community arts center and gallery in Los Angeles. There were calaveras everywhere: painted on people’s faces, on clothing, carved into jewelry, on vendors’ art pieces, and seen within the altars and galleries inside the community center. The remembrance of our loved ones whom we had lost and the sense of cultural pride filled the event, and my heart. The November 2nd celebration falls on the same day as my late grandmother’s birthday and being in East Los Angeles, where my grandparents briefly lived upon their arrival to the United States, made for a memorable night. I was able to celebrate and reflect on my grandmother’s life and Mexican heritage in the same proximity where my family’s American beginnings started. It was definitely a moving, full-circle moment.

It is this same circular movement and cycle, or as scholars Lara Medina and Gilbert R. Cadena state, “the interconnectedness of life,” that is emphasized in indigenous beliefs and within the Día de los Muertos holiday, itself (75). We live, die, and our spirits return to dwell among our loved ones we leave behind and partake of food, drink, music, and fragrant flowers that we enjoyed before passing on. The living family members hope that their late relatives and ancestors will return and hear the words that are being expressed and witness the celebrations in their honor.

Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a Mexican holiday and some of its celebrations can be traced back to between 2,500-3,000 years ago. The fiesta that became the modern day Día de los Muertos fell in the ninth and tenth months of the Aztec calendar, where celebrations were devoted to the goddess, Mictecacihuatl, known as “Lady of the Dead” and separate feasts were dedicated to children and adults who had passed on. Sixteenth-century Spanish Catholics shared similar rituals honoring the dead, as the Mexican indigenous—graveside meal and flower offerings, and masses for the dead were common. What we see today is a combination of the two cultures and spiritual beliefs. It is currently observed in connection with the Christian holidays All Hallows’ Eve, All Saints’ Day, and All Souls’ Day, falling on October 31st-November 2nd.

Altars, or ofrendas are built privately (or as it has grown in the U.S., there are public altars at community celebrations) with pictures and other memorabilia of their loved ones, vibrant orange marigolds, candles, and possessions of their loved one. In Mexico, families go to cemeteries to clean and decorate gravesites, feast, play music, and leave offerings. Celebrations can vary depending on the region or village. Some traditional foods that are consumed during Día de los Muertos are tamales, pan de muerte, atole, and champurrado. At gatherings and events in the United States, one can see energetic , yet sacred Aztec dances, observe and purchase amazing art, calevera masks, decorative sugar skulls;all while listening to various genres of music, while walking under brightly designed papel picado.

While this holiday is celebrated and honored in Mexico and within Mexican-American communities, other Latin American countries also observe their own rendition of the holiday such as Guatemala, Ecuador, and Brazil. According to Medina and Cadena, “The Latino culture is not afraid of death…when you age you don’t have to be ashamed” (87). While this holiday is associated with Latinos, other parts of the world also have their own take on celebrations honoring the dead.

In the U.S., different events have different flavors; one can view social-political themes of justice at some events, while American pop culture is also being weaved in, such as at the famed Hollywood Forever Cemetery. Self Help Graphics is credited for developing the love of Día de los Muertos in Los Angeles, then California, and eventually spreading throughout the United States. Today calaveras have become a popular icon and style in regards to clothing, accessories, and tattoos, even for non-Mexicans/Latinos. California cities such as Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Francisco all have large celebrations as well as other areas with a large Mexican/Mexican-American population throughout the Southwest, Chicago, Colorado, and so on. The awareness of Día de los Muertos has really grown over the past years and its celebrations have become more accessible. I am so grateful that I became exposed to this holiday and I now celebrate annually. Medina and Cadena write of a celebration participant, “Without that sense of who we are, and who our ancestors are, we become a lost culture. Many segments of our society are lost because they don’t know their ancestry and they don’t understand death” (87). I feel it is important to honor our loved ones who have passed, for they will be returning to partake of your offerings. Death is part of the cycle of life and the more it is honored and celebrated, we can better understand the importance of the cycle.


Works Cited:

Medina, Lara and Gilbert R. Cadena. “Días de los Muertos: Public Ritual, Community Renewal, and Popular Religion in Los Angeles.” Horizons of the Sacred: Mexican Traditions in U.S. Catholicism. Ed. Timothy Matovina and Gary Riebe-Estrella, SVD. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press, 1999. 70-93. Print.


Photo Collage: Taken by self at Self-Help Graphics Día de los Muertos celebration 11/2/2013.




Día de los Muertos (Final Project, Part 1 of 3)

Paz book coverDia de los Muertos Marcos


In Octavio Paz’ collection of essays, The Labyrinth of Solitude, he describes the Mexican psyche and explains that Mexicans hide behind masks and rituals to conceal their immense solitude, resulting from the mestizaje prevalent throughout Mexican history, lineage, and culture. In his essay, “The Day of the Dead,” he writes, “The solitary Mexican loves fiestas and public gatherings. Any occasion for getting together will serve, any pretext to stop the flow of time and commemorate men and events with festivals and ceremonies. We are a ritual people, and this characteristic enriches both our imaginations and our sensibilities, which are equally sharp and alert” (47). He continues, “There are certain days when the whole country, from the most remote villages to the largest cities, prays, shouts, feasts, gets drunk and kills, in honor of the Virgin of Guadalupe or Benito Juárez” (47). In other words, Paz believes that fiestas are Mexicans’ only luxury, a way to temporarily escape “poverty and misery” (49). He explains that the Mexican becomes more open during these fiestas, providing the opportunity for revealing oneself.

Paz believes the modern Mexican has been shaped by his or her indigenous ancestors and Christian influences in regards to death, but has also become “modern” in the sense that death now lacks meaning. He writes, “The Mexican…is familiar with death, jokes about it, caresses it, sleeps with it, celebrates it; it is one of his favorite toys and his most steadfast love” (57). Paz closes with, “We oscillate between intimacy and withdrawal, between a shout and a silence, between a fiesta and a wake, without ever truly surrendering ourselves. Our indifference hides behind a death mask; our wild shout rips off this mask and shoots into the sky, where it swells, explodes, and falls back in silence and defeat. Either way, the Mexican shuts himself off from the world: from life and from death” (64).

As I read Paz’s essay, I could clearly see his use of Gothic elements and the uncanny. His discussions of violence, solitude, death, and overall darkness evoke Gothic themes. For example, during the celebration of Día de los Muertos, it is common for people to paint calaveras (skulls/skeletons) on their faces. One of the purposes of the calaveras is to demonstrate that “death is the great leveler” of us all; in other words, our social, political, and economic statuses become the same in the hereafter (Tatum, 184). Tying the face-painting to Paz’s philosophy of Mexicans being mask wearers, I believe this painted “mask” is a physical example of a Mexican’s emotional masks being worn.


Works Cited:

Paz, Octavio. “The Day of the Dead.” The Labyrinth of Solitude. New York: The Grove Press, 1985. 47-64. Print.

Tatum, Charles M. “Art, Celebrations, and Other Popular Traditions.” Chicano Popular Culture. Tucson: The University of Arizona Press, 2001. 153-190. Print.


Book Image: Courtesy of Google Books

Día de los Muertos Image: Self-image




Final Blog Post Part II: Calligraphy of the Witch and Sor Juana’s Second Dream – Embodiments of the Chicano-Gothic

Connections: Sor Juana & Concepcion


(Image credit: www.nytimes.com)

My exploration of Professor Gaspar’s Sor Juana’s Second Dream was prompted by our study of her subsequent novel Calligraphy of the Witch. Adhering to her form of historical fiction, Gaspar’s novel serves as a sequel to her tale of Sor Juana, set in the Massachusetts Bay Colony during the era of the Salem Witch Trials. She inserts the fictional character of Thankful Seagraves, a mestiza slave, into American mythology during a prominently Puritan dominated era. Through my investigation into Professor Gaspar’s first novel I was able to discover the origins of the character of Concepcion, our class’s first introduction into the realm of the Chicano-gothic.

The character of Concepcion Benavidez enters Sor Juana’s world as one of her apprentice scribes. Throughout the novel, Sor Juana is unrelentingly strict in her discipline of the apprentices, constantly scolding them and, at times, beating them for misbehaving. However, she immediately develops an affinity for Concepcion when she is brought before her at the tender age of eleven. In her later years as a slave, becoming the property of the Dutch pirate Lauren-Cornille de Graffe, Concepcion is sold for the high price her talent of penmanship demanded in New England. Sor Juana recognized her aptitude for embroidery at their meeting and devoted her time with Concepcion to developing her penmanship skills, a skill which later becomes Thankful Seagraves instrument of salvation, relinquishing her from the control of her captor. As both Sor Juana and Concepcion grew and matured together, separated only by about fifteen years, their relationship developed into that of a mother and a daughter, resembling that of Sor Juana and la Marquesa , crossing in and out of a romantic affair. When the San Jeronimo convent houses, a cimarrona named Alendula, or escaped slave, an intimate relationship begins to develop between Concepcion and the prisoner. Concepcion visits with her often and begins to contemplate running away with the prisoner to her small village in Vera Cruz. Concepcion comes to Sor Juana with her plans to flee from the convent with the captive and make the treacherous journey across New Spain to the small settlement in Vera Cruz. Here, Sor Juana recognizes what she refers to as the “destiny of every woman’s body” and the inescapable lack of freedom tethered to this fate that all women must succumb to in their lives. (Gaspar 232) She allows Concepcion to make her own choices and exercise her own freedom, something Sor Juana yearned for her entire life but was never given the opportunity to experience. Here, the destinies of Sor Juana and Concepcion diverge, the narratives of their lives becoming completely their own. In the following months, Sor Juana hears news of a pirates’ siege of Vera Cruz which, unbeknown to her, results in Concepcion’s capture until her tenure upon the ship leads her to the New England colonies and the transition into Calligraphy of the Witch in which she takes on the persona of the Thankful Seagraves, an individual who was actually involved with the Witch Trials.



Presence of the Chicano-Gothic

(Image credit: www.poemas-del-alma.com)

As the first major work this class encountered in the genre of the Chicano-gothic, Calligraphy of the Witch possessed a great deal of characteristics that embodied both the Chicano as well as the gothic. Naturally, as a prequel written by the same author, Sor Juanas Second Dream contains within it the sane Chicano-gothic qualities, many paralleling those at play within Gaspar’s narrative of Concepcion. Both novels find their climax and the major source of tension emanating from an authority like institution that seeks to persecute the main character. In Calligraphy Concepcion finds herself on trial before the Massachusetts Bay Colony facing accusations of witchcraft, the hysteria and confusion of the Salem Witch Trials causing Concepcion’s Chicano/Catholic foreignness to be construed as evil. In the same predicament, Sor Juana is put to trial before the Spanish Inquisition on accusations of heresy, rampant sinfulness, and blasphemy during a time when her progressive feminism and female intellect struck fear and misunderstanding within the religious confusion. The persecution within the societies both of these women lived in had very much to do with their marginalized ethnic dispositions, a very Chicano element. As a mestiza, a mixture of Native American and Spanish, Concepcion is already seen as a subservient figure in the eyes of Puritan society. Although quite educated and wise, those within the colony see her as threat because she cannot speak the language and her Catholic religious practices are grossly misunderstood. In the case of Juana, her criolla heritage places her at a slightly disadvantaged position in terms of caste, and her position as a woman even further reinforces the stigma surrounding her intellect as unnatural and unacceptable. The lack of solidarity and the search for a sense of identity surrounding both these characters truly embodies the sentiments of Chicano literature. Coming from broken homes, never having a firm grasp on who they are and where they come from, the combination of mixed ethnic backgrounds and the subordination inherent in being a woman during this time, makes for a volatile environment for the formation of an identity


Both of Gaspar’s novels share in common a great deal of gothic elements as well. Both novels employ the very gothic literary style of narrative in the form of diary entries. A bulk of the insight into the gothic, turbulent psyches of both these women comes through in their diary entries within the story. The manner in which Gaspar depicts life within the convent as well is extremely gothic. The superficiality, melancholy, and betrayal that seem to permeate life within the convent constantly resurface throughout this prequel, Sor Juana stating that, “evil and cruelty and evil lurk in this place.” (Gaspar 144) The regular public hanging of enemies to the state in the town square also casts a gothic shadow in the novel. The practiced self-flagellation and severe penance practiced by nuns, notably the instance of lashing as a form of sacrifice during the solar eclipse, within the convent creates and eerie and violent atmosphere that normally would not associated with a religious institution. A particular scene in which Sor Juana witnesses a curanderaesque delivery of a baby is one of the more gothic scenes within the novel. The servants of the convent delivery the baby within a smoky shroud, chanting songs, claiming that a “bad spirit will make the baby die.” (Gaspar 248) This somewhat sacrilegious ritual being performed within a convent casts a benevolent pal upon the already malicious activity within the convent.

Gaspar’s Sor Juana’s Second Dream flawlessly intertwines the motifs of the Chicano and the gothic as she tailors the fictional voice of Sor Juana with historical events of her illustrious life. Although not required in our course curriculum, this novel very much embodies the qualities which we have attributed to the Chicano- gothic, and would be an invaluable addition to future course of study within this incredibly unique genre.


Works Cited

  1. Gaspar De Alba, Alicia. Sor Juana’s Second Dream. Albuquerque: The University of New Mexico Pres, 1999. Print
  2. Gaspar De Alba, Alicia. Calligraphy of the Witch. Arte Publico Press, 2007. Print

Final Blog Post Part 1: Sor Juana’s Second Dream

The purpose of this final presentation is to provide a deeper investigation into one of the first Chicano-gothic characters we encountered in this class, Concepcion Benavidez of Calligraphy of the Witch. A sequel to Professor Gaspar’s novel Sor Juana’s Second Dream, I decided to take an in depth look to where this character found her origins and how she came  to find herself in the Massachusetts Bay Colony during the volatile era of the Salem Witch Trials. Sor Juana’s Second Dream chronicles the life of the celebrated feminist, Latina poet Sor Juana Ines De La Cruz who in the novel, takes on a young apprentice, Concepcion. Many of the Chicano-gothic elements found within Calligraphy of the Witch were also present within this work and through my exploration of this text I provide a more comprehensive look at Gaspar’s techniques and style as a Chicano-gothic author and how the lives of these two influential Chicano women intertwined. Much of Sor Juana’s poetry and other works are subject to scholarly examination, however, not much is known regarding her life and how this nun, with such deeply amorous and feminist tendencies embedded in her poetry, found herself in the convent. Professor Gaspar’s novel provides an intriguing look into the life of one of the earliest feminist poets.

The Life of Sor Juana Ines De La Cruz: The Tenth Muse of Mexico



(Image credit: en.wikipedia.org)

Born circa November 12th, 1651 in the small Mexican village of San Miguel Nepantla, Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz is considered the first great Latin American poet and one of the most important figures in Hispanic literature to date. For centuries this Mexican nun has fascinated scholars and readers alike with her poetic brilliance, pioneering feminism, and all-encompassing intellect. Renowned for her accomplishments as a playwright, rhetorician, and musician, Sor Juana is often equated with Sappho, the lesbian poet whom was responsible for identifying Plato as the “Tenth Muse.” In her novel Sor Juana’s Second Dream, Alicia Gaspar de Alba chronicles the life of this captivating figure. De Alba gracefully employs the genre of historical fiction as she accurately archives the events of this 16th century nun’s life. She manages to mix Sor Juana’s own words and literary works with psychological and emotional components she herself imagined in order to create a full-bodied portrait of Mexico’s Tenth Muse. While much debate continues regarding the potency of Sor Juana’s language of love employed in her works, and whether it may have been manifested by her classification as what we would contemporarily define as a “lesbian”, De Alba provides her readers with a dynamic portrayal of this far removed historical figure who’s radically progressive poetry was an unwavering voice during a time of fervent religious persecution and gender disparity.   Juana Ines de la Cruz was born out of wedlock to Isabel Ramirez and Manuel de Asbaje in the small village of Nepantla (the village has since been renamed Nepantla de Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz in her honor) in Mexico, New Spain. After being abandoned by her father, Juana and her mother were taken in by her grandfather, Pedro Ramirez. It was in Pedro’s book-filled house that Juana acquired her voracious appetite for academia of all sorts, until at the age of eight, following the death of her grandfather, she was moved under the care of her aunt Maria’ and her husband in Mexico City. As an illegitimate criolla, a native inhabitant of Spanish America but of European descent, the opportunity for social ascent was severely limited. However, by her sixteenth birthday, word of this self-educated prodigy made its way to the palace of the Spanish viceroy where Juana became a lady-in-waiting to the la Marquesa de Mancera. Here, Juana cultivates an intimate relationship with the Vicereine, accompanying her on all her errands, bathing her, and giving her private concerts displaying her musical prowess on the mandolin. Juana’s notoriety continued to grow during her tenure in the palace, notably after, as commissioned by the viceroy, the most well-known academics and theologians gathered to challenge Juana in a contest of scholarly intellect, Juana handling each opponent with ease. Wanting only to study, Juana soon becomes plagued by melancholy as confusion surrounding her love for la Marquesa and loath to marry, push her in the direction of the convent. Deterred after only a few months by the Clementine order’s predilection for self- flagellation and little sleep, with Padre Antonio as her father confessor, Juana becomes Sor Juana Ines De La Cruz in the Convent of Santa Puebla of the Order of San Jeronimo.  Here in the order of, the San Jeronimo, “her quill becomes her salvation and damnation.”Sor Juana is quickly elected to the position responsible for creating and archiving the entire history of the San Jeronimo order, a position creating uniquely for her. She is given her own cell, complete with bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, library, and servant. Her library — which held Mexico’s largest book collection — developed into a meeting-place for the intellectual elite. As Juana continues to gain favor with clergy and the court, the streams of guests and constant artistic commissions from local nobility, the number on her list of enemies within the convent and the religious hierarchy begins to climb. One such guest, la Condesa de Paredes, becomes an intimate friend of Juana’s and becomes the catalyst which produces one of Juana’s most celebrated works, “La Respuesta a Sor Filotea.” Together, Sor Juana and Maria Luisa embark on a passionate friendship that throughout De Alba’s novel weaves in and out of the boundaries of a romantic relationship. This hidden relationship produces the amorous poetry for which Sor Juana is so critically acclaimed. It was in her secret correspondence with Maria Luisa, or publically known as La Condesa, that Juana created beautiful lines such as “That you’re a woman far away is no hindrance to my love: for the soul, as you well know, distance and sex don’t count.” (Gaspar 167) While in scholarly analysis it is unclear whether Sor Juana was a lesbian in modern-day standards, in Gaspar De Alba’s novel, these lines embodying a solidarity among women and sublime affinity that transcends gender stem from her romantic infatuation with la Condesa. One her most renowned anti-male poems “You Men”embodies the determination and bravery she constantly demonstrated in not allowing her brilliance to be stifled in a society where intelligent and capable women like her were considered unacceptable. Sor Juana criticizes the Machismo of her time and the disparities in how knowledge was imparted, and the diminished value women were assigned. However, it was not the feminist content of her poetic verses that attracted persecution on the behalf of her contemporaries.

Undoubtedly her most noteworthy and most controversial work was her Response to the Illustrious Sor Filotea, or more commonly known as La Repuesta . Her response was a direct byproduct after a private letter of Sor Juana’s in which she uses ingenious discourse to develop her position on a theological debate concerning Christ’s crucifixion became public. When the Archbishop of Mexico attempted to silence her and tarnish her reputation, Sor Juana wrote La Repuesta as her defense; her defining work, but ultimately the instrument of her downfall. In a brilliant display of rhetorical and linguistic skills which has earned her notoriety among scholars today, Sor Juana turned around the logic used by the Church to justify her oppression and subverted it into a magnificent defense for women’s intellectual rights and education. Channeling the inner psyche of Sor Juana’s voice, Gaspar de Alba describes the inkwell as her “blood” and the goose quill her “sword.” (Gaspar 350) Though the letter’s tone is superficially humble, Sor Juana forcefully insists that women have a natural right to the mind. Her use of biblical evidence to support her call for strong, educated women is one of the pieces greatest strengths. Although insightful and astonishingly progressive, Sor Juana’s La Repuesta attracted indignation from the Church during a time when the Inquisition’s influence was beginning to wane, but its presence in New Spain was not a force to be trifled with. As a result of the unwanted attention, the eyes of the Inquisition now fixed firmly on her activity within the convent, Sor Juana was forced to renounce all forms of her writing and scholarly study, and confess to the sinful nature of her writings and scandalous behavior lest she be charged with heresy and blasphemy. Not much exists regarding Sor Juana’s life following her renunciation of her scholarship at the hands of the Inquisition. She lived a nun’s existence until her death in 1695, succumbing to illness while caring for the victims of epidemic.   Professor Gaspar interprets Sor Juana with meticulous scholarship and a feminist perspective. The intellect’s decision to enter a religious order has puzzled her readers over the centuries. Her friendships and relationships with women are evident in her works. The author has extrapolated from the facts a basis for lesbian sexuality, and this is realistically depicted in her novel. Juana makes the choice to enter the convent not as a positive vocation, although she is devout, but as a rejection of marriage and childbearing. In flawlessly capturing the voice of Sor Juana in what lead her to her choose a life of religious devotion, Professor Gaspar writes, “Destiny is the cage each woman is born with, and we can’t ever leave that cage.” (Gaspar 232) Forever altered by a traumatizing act of sexual abuse by her uncle when she was a young girl, Sor Juana was fated to reject the female norms that society placed upon her, ultimately finding unstable solace in the convent. While her enemies called her an unnatural woman and accused her of mocking her religious vows, her progressive feminist ideals and poetic prowess have earned her the title of Mexico’s “Tenth Muse.”

The Color White

The color white for the most part denotes positivity and overall goodness. White can be associated with light, innocence, purity, and virginity. In western cultures, white is associated with the heavens, safety, faith, spirituality, sincerity, cleanliness, softness and perfection. Furthermore, one can find many examples in the Bible, in which it states that the color white promotes overall positivity. A perfect example can be found in Psalms 51:7, it states, “I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.”

When depicting that the color black, one can conclude that black being the opposite of white symbolizes fear, power, death, evil, and aggression.

Colors and their significance can sometimes be uncanny, for it does not always have universal meanings. Hence the color white can hardly be associated with something bad. However, if represented in a specific manner, white, according to the Latin/ Chicano culture can sometimes represent negativity, such as, death, bad luck and fear.

For example dreaming of a white owl can represent that death is nearby. Additionally dreaming of a white horse can also represent a negative feeling, thus often times in the Latin/Chicano cultures, people dream of white horses predominantly before or after a close/loved ones death. Dreaming of white animals is not the only way the color white is associated with negatives in the Latin/Chicano culture. La Llorona, a Latin urban legend is about a woman who dresses in white and haunts at night. Her legend began a long time ago when she killed her children and walked around her town with a white dress at night screaming ‘mis ninos, mis ninos’ (my children, my children).

In sums, white is an uncanny color in the Latin/Chicano community. For the most part, it can represent and stand for good things, however, ironically it can also represent negativity, death and remorse.





Part 3: Sublimation.

Latin American families are generally Catholic. I personally never had much faith and it was even more exhausted by my family’s faith and how it had habituated them. As I grew out of my faith and into my major, philosophy, not only was a language fast becoming a barrier impasse but a cultural barrier was manifesting as well. Diplomatic discussions are not easy in a household still beholden to a certain zealotry. I believe Catholicism is Gothic considering the doctrine of original sin and the historical treatment of non-believers. In this entry the perspective assumes a nameless narrator’s. This is in more ways a work of fiction that resulted from many observances I noted through familial interactions wherein I regularly felt a loss of satisfactory intimacy due to cultural differences. Its hard to make a story about little things you just see growing up. But I collected enough snapshots took make a collage, so to speak. I recalled the parental son dynamics of Psycho and What You See In the Dark, while keeping in the perspective of the latter’s 2nd person. Although it is of note, what I have written here is a nameless character who struggles with an abject, internal strife as he engages the superstition of Catholicism by recalling many of my own adolescent interactions with my parents. The character, however, is mostly dramatized to display what a young, fifteen year old suburban, male may struggle with, such as teenage insecurity and masculinity issues.It doesn’t help to be conflicted between cultural outlooks on how to overcome these issues when one feels a sense of ubiquitous guilt of self. I think the family in this story is much less middle class than mine, I imagined them as an even more traditional, non-college educated immigrant family than my own. I did this because it allowed me to tell an internal story that was voyeuristic in that it was so miserable. Not unlike an epistolary, I wrote the passing thoughts of the nameless character as impressed upon a reader assuming that role. My own mother took to praying things away and forcing me to do it with her. In a lot of ways father took to asking me to grow up so that I could help the family.


“Your houses shall be brown and beige and tan.
Can ethics and aesthetics co-exist
So seriously?  Find pattern in belief
And dream the dream most people want to dream
Of God’s assent.  Now reconstruct a church
That celebrates what’s most unnatural
In nature:  Make your Christ a man who hates
The things you’re not.”

– Karl Rosenquist, “Orange County.”


Catholic Guilt

You were the epitome of teenage neurosis as Dr. McCann diagnosed you as clinically depressed in your private high school’s psyche ward. Dr. McCann did not use a legal pad to annotate your descent toward unspeakably haphazard suicide attempts, he simply stacked white copy paper on top of white copy paper until he seemingly had a mound of abject printing sheets as his notes on you. You didn’t know what to call it. But you knew you needed to talk. Teachers gave up on you before your coaches did. But at least you knew where your father kept his gun. Though, you only knew that you only knew for certain that were troubled because it shamed you.

Your mother’s eyes were like glass until they began to shudder at the nerves, melting her mascara unto Spanglish hyperventilation. You felt what could be called her revulsion. Your father sighed a sigh that not only vacated the aerosol of carbon dioxide and the tar of stucco work from his lungs, but from every last chamber of his palpitating heart. You felt what could be called his resignation.

The electronic bell chimed in the halls, the classroom doors recoiled into their rubber stops, locks clamored in between locker after locker, and then the air stagnated in the campus’ trees amid the summer’s heat. You sauntered under a tree’s shadow of shade, tore your fingernails into the bark, took a deep breath and prayed for this intervention to take. It did not.
Your mother prayed the rosary once a week for you, she said, “Dios te bendeciría si usted sólo quiserias amarlo.” You held her hand, pitying the way she pitied you but were, nonetheless, her accomplice. Your father went to work, only to come home and toil housework, reminding you, “A tu edad, yo ya había tenido hijos que preocuparse.” You bit down on your jaw as your third row of molars began to tear through your gums with the taste of blood.

Knowing that your parents could not be trusted marked your trajectory toward adulthood. At your age, their lives had been defined. That made you feel less than empowered, still more than privileged. You did the math, so you obviously knew what sex was, but now you had to figure out drugs, drinking and driving all through cautious, empirical means—not to mention covertly, considering both your mother and father’s lack of tolerance would likely result in your excommunication from the home they had built and you were threatening to burn down, one desperate cigarette at a time.

Your father began to threaten you with physical violence again. It was the way of his father. If he could not make an example of you for your sister, he would have to pay someone to sort you out before he made you a bastard.
“We are made sick and commanded to be well,” began who you would think was your family priest, “and only through suffering and accepting the grace of God can we find true happiness is.” But this was not your family priest speaking, it was Dr. Ramirez, the U.C.L.A. psychologist you were sure wanted to exorcise you. When Dr. Ramirez spoke to your parents in Spanish, it calmed them, though when he spoke to you in English he antagonized your adolescent religious skepticism.

You talked and talked, waiting to be cured, alluding to the physical and emotional child abuse that your afterschool programs taught you to report, though you could never recall the Spanish to defend yourself at home and only knew how to take punches like a man, all of which could not be unlearned. One afternoon, tired of the lies your father and mother had taken to telling your younger sister about your biweekly pediatric check-ups, you were desperate enough to be cured, medically.

You told the psychiatrist the truth. You told her that you had exhausted how much of your life you were willing to deconstruct week after week so that you could reschedule and commence with the half-truths all over again. The psychiatrist never looked up from her prescription pad and you never forgot her inattention after she issued your pharmaceutical trial, on the controlled substances form you were fated to abuse. She rescheduled your litmus follow up. And there you went, lobotomized one capsule at a time.

You took the Lexapro in your pocket, contemplating what it meant to be on the other side of it as the Logo stared up at you. You recalled the side effects. You told your soccer coach, regretfully, that your behavior may become bipolar in hopes that he, as another surrogate father-figure, would grant you the wisdom necessary to either follow through or provide you the blue print on how to “man up”—as your own father demanded of you.

You stared at yourself intently in mirrors, at first naively refusing to gradually adulterate your neurology’s naturalism. You then took the plunge and felt the high. You took them all. It was for a good cause. Soon, after a year of new prescription trials and years of practice, you began to rationalize to yourself why taking a fist full of a prescription only referred to as 80mg of S489 by your psychiatrist also was for a good cause. You were not worried when you began to faint, you only began to become worried when you became prone to flashes of lights, then mirages of the whole spectrum tinting the peripheral of your ocular nerves. Street lights became celestial matter, orbiting like planetary models as they beamed across your windshield. You saw that you were in purgatory. By the time it was not quite simply a bright light, you began to realize that the dice of your brain’s biochemistry had already been rolled. But you had one last epiphany as you watched the ionic bonds of drool break from your mouth in the throes of another headache. You saw yourself as a flat-circle, circling an abyss. As the saliva fell further from you and onto the floor, you saw a snake determined to spend all of time eating its own tail until it choked. You stayed home from school that, you were sick but not in the way you had rationalized. You walked into you parent’s room. You took up your father’s gun. You could say you manned up then.  Pushing it into your last wisdom tooth, you felt like this was the only decision you had made your whole life. It was for a good cause.

Part II: Name Calling.

In this entry I really took the opportunity of telling a Dionysian story of an internal struggle that may result from the cultural strife that is being an immigrant’s son with a foreign name. This is the most autobiographical of my two creative works. Like instances in Bless Me, Ultima and Their Dogs Came With Them, the narrator chronicles the struggles  the reader may find themselves troubled by due to the ethnic connotations of the reader’s supposed name. Written in 2nd person, like What You See In The Dark, and inspired my own personal history, I hoped to establish not just a novel outlook on the abject and the Dionysian, but to relay the empathy of the scenarios and provoke sympathy within a reader, as one imagines themselves as a child struggling with what to call themselves.



“I hated school. I hated work. I hated boredom. I had no
interests. I had a happy childhood. There was school,
adolescence, growing up, questions about the future. I
was twenty-one. I had no dream …
We grew up in quiet suburbs with protecting parents,
taking tennis lessons, swimming lessons, playing soccer
with sheltered kids. We had favorite cartoons and old toys
that smelled like plastic nostalgia. In college we met
friends for life, got married, set, fucked-up, full of petty
convictions. People said the world belonged to the

– Anonymous, Manifesto.


An Immigrant’s Son

You were told that when you were born you had been given no name. You were not, however, nameless. Your birth certificate read: “Rivas, Boy #2.” Your mother was saddened that you were not a girl as the baby shower had necessitated one and all your clothes were pink enough to have been manufactured by Mattel anyway.

You have always hated the name you were given. It took you two decades to finally call yourself by your own name, let alone to develop enough resolve to anticipate the squeamish insecurity in hearing people’s mispronunciations, an anxiousness only matched by the incredulous widening of eyes and the thinning of lips when you later began introducing yourself by your own name.

You were “John” because “Jean” was a girl’s name or spelled “Gene,” which didn’t sound like “Jean.” It was a good name. You found enough of a hint of domestication to hide in it. But you knew you didn’t look like a “John” amongst Johnny and Jonathan. So you tried “Pierre” for a while, though mostly at soccer practice as the decade long roots for “John” had already been grown to ostracize your childhood. But the white-Mexican boy, Facundo, called you “Francesco” because he didn’t like your new name either. Sometime after France declined to coalesce within Operation Iraqi Liberation, the morning after being up all night watching the explosions filtered through the green of night vision on MTV, you walked through the school yard only to cut your feet upon the shards of merlot that your classmates’ parents spared from the sewers so that their children, too, may call you a traitor. You then abandoned “Pierre” and allowed those who insisted to call you “JP” because “JeanPierre” resounded too sophisticatedly for the middling threshold of middle class your family inhabited.

One day, you put down your Legos and asked your mother why she named you “JeanPierre” and she asked you what you would have preferred and you answered “Alex,” because although you didn’t know where or what Greece was, there were enough of them around. You mother recoiled, but relented, nonetheless, that she wanted to name you “Henry,” but your father said no. You asked your mother why she had let your father choose and she answered, “porque él manda.” The moment you began to consider her explanation, gender relations were subconsciously realized for the rest of your life. But you didn’t know that until your father raised his hand over your mother’s head. So you asked your mother, Magaly, again, “¿pero, por que JeanPierre? ¿Somos Francés?” Your mother then reminded you that “Henry,” in your household, would have fast become “Enrique” and that implication ensured you would never look back.

One Sunday afternoon with your sweat drenched father lying across the rug at the end of his seven day work week, he explained the bearing of being called by your name and why his own father chose Diederich, if we were not, in fact, German either. “Somos castellano,” your father proclaimed, intoning that you were different from the neighborhood full of “Jesúses,” “Joses” and “Juans.” Your lineage, he proclaimed, was distinct. But you knew your mother was Nicaraguan and that you father himself was born there as well as an immigrant’s son. Yet, your father assured you that esoteric names were reserved for those of us whom could earn them. Instead of inspiring you, this burdened you.

You never felt like yourself because of your name, as though one day you would metamorphosize into a well-liked, well-adjusted boy, but you only learn to master English so that you could forget the language everyone at school called “Mexican.” You had hoped that you would have earned JeanPierre by now, but when you began calling yourself by your own name, at twenty, looming over the precipice of a lifetime of private school debt, you realized there was only yourself left, truly, to detest.


Cathy Ashworth’s Chicana Gothic Art

My project is a tumbler centered around Cathy Ashworth’s Chicana Gothic Art. Her art consist of different five categories: “Undead Girls,” “DeadGirls,“Skeletons,” “Frida,” and “Hearts.” Each category has its own history and story, though every category is influences by the holiday Dia de los Muertos in some way. My tumbler boast some of her paintings from each category and background information about them, which can be read about through each of the links included on this blog. An interview is also included to gain a better perspective on her inspiration.

I decided to do my project on Cathy because I have always been a huge fan of her work. Her paintings are simply gorgeous. The paintings included on the blog do not do her portraits any justice when you see them in person. I also decided to do my project on Cathy’s art because it is sold in friends’ shop at the Placita Olvera Street where I grew up. I discuss each painting that is posted on Tumbler by giving historical or contextual background and my personal opinion. What is most unique about my Tumbler, and Cathy’s work, is its bright and colorful tribute to women as powerful and honorable beings. Though her work is very gothic, uncanny, and abject, it still brings forth an element of hope and truth.

Creating this project as well as participating in this class was both interesting and unusual to me because I have never experienced something as both “Chicano,” and “Gothic.” Much of the gothic elements we discussed in class, as well as in my tumbler, from my perspective are simply apart of the culture. For example, Dia de los Muertos is not gothic to me. It is just a holiday that is apart of my culture. Stepping outside my own perspective, and learning to navigate my ideas from a new viewpoint was both a challenge and a task; but I am grateful for the new perspective I have own my culture.

Part I: The Trouble With Race: Hispanic, Chicano or Latino?

My final project is in 3 distinct installments. This is the first, and is largely a commentary on race and its implications for those of us whom may be racially mixed. In this inaugural piece, I engage the complexity of living as mestizo in America, while alluding to the fact that placing a political emphasis, such as denoting one’s self as “Chicano,” really does more to isolate those whom do so from those who do not–whether the latter consists of conflicted individuals or those deemed not the proper connotation of ethnic. My intention in contesting a political emphasis on race is not to undermine its political relevance, moreover, my intention is to speak candidly regarding how diversity undermines itself when those who are of ethnicity are incapable of public discourse regarding the social ramifications of politically aligning one’s self as a proponent of a specific race.



Leon, Nicaragua


For all of human history, we have believed—and still believe—that we are essentially different. You are not me, and I am not you. One is essentially white or of race. Put another way, one is essentially domestic or essentially foreign–which implies domestication in a pejorative way. Never clearer is this error in our way of thinking then when we conceive of race, as there is no such thing.

We are, essentially, the same. And I believe there is a trouble with invoking a politicized emphasis upon race worth talking about, rather than there being a trouble with racism worth talking about. To identify one’s self as Chicano means something more than to be a second generation Mexican American. But fundamentally, I found this difficult because at my whole I think of myself as distinctly American in the foremost way. Thishas created, for me, a duality not unlike the kind we have seen throughout Antonio’s assimilation in Bless Me, Ultima. A duality at odds with how Ben racially identifies himself in Their Dogs Came With Them and the parental indignation exhibited by Medea in The Hungry Woman.

Imagine you are applying for a scholarship. You are what is called “of race.” The application form, however, asks you to firmly conscript yourself as of a singular race a there is often no room for intermediates. The trouble, in my mind, is that all races are mixed.

Imagine the betrayal you feel to your father’s ancestral legacy when you must disown it in order to bet on what the university considers the greater good of “diversity.” So you ask yourself, if you don’t align yourself as ethnic, will your graduate life be sunk further then you ever thought into a void of student debt? Your integrity, after all, may cost you $30,000.

Worse yet than no intermediates to define you, you read in the fine print that one-drop of blood in the direction of non-white is enough to consider yourself contaminated and therefore in need of academic relief. After all, is that not what one drop really means?

Race exists only as cultural phenomena, one I have begun to regard as a political superstition. Not only is the conception of race troublesome because all forms of race are mixed, but because race, scientifically, does not exist. The fall out which results in the superstitious thinking of race is a historical one. Not historical in the Karl Marx sense that all conflict is that of class warfare, but historical in that if we think back far enough, our racial problems result from the geographical innovations which manifest themselves as an emphasis placed upon culture and race as if to speak in earnest honesty about either is to offend the delicacies of its vast relativity. To criticize culture and race honestly is to be racist, or supremacist. Is this, in the end, what results within the ideal of diversity we are told is good to strive for? One in which those of race may monopolize what is means to be of race and what being of race entails, with near cultural impunity?

In an America where the subject of race is only warranted to be spoken of by one who is black or when one who is white says a word that another who is not white says is not theirs: what does it really mean to talk about Trayvon Martin’s race, if we are never going to talk about George Zimmerman’s?

Once, men attempted to make a science of race, asking questions such as what made a person white, black, brown, or yellow? Among the traits that were emphasized were not only skin color, but facial shape, nose shape, hair color and form, and eye color. Once, the working scientific definition of race was a group of people living within a particular geographical region who share a collection of biological traits typically not shared with other groups. The trouble with race then–as it is now–was that typifying race was problematic, scientists could not come to consensus regarding which traits–if any–were significant.

We have 30,000 genes. Yet, we are on average 99.5% similar to each other genetically. Thinking that this it too trivial to account for all the differences between us would be a mistake, because the difference is not only within .5% margin, but found within our history.

What does it mean that some U.S. Americans of Latin American descent detest being called Hispanic? Or worse yet, Latino, as though imparted upon them was a burden of a culture not wholly their own. Some believe that Latino only implies the consequences following the expunging of an indigenous culture that was once theirs.

With many often preferring that they be called Chicano rather than Mexican American, has often put me at odds with my own cultural identity. Despite not being of wholly Nicaraguan descent, I wonder what the very mestizo fact of myself even means considering that the colonialization of New Spain has had much more to do with my cultural rearing than any political identity that may paint me anew. I am the son of an immigrant who fled from civil war because the Reagan Administration fought a proxy war far from the basement of the White House. My father came to America as a political refugee, he then set his sights upon the American Dream, yet Spanish was my first language and unlike many second generation sons and daughters, I have spent months at various points in my life in Central America. Yet, the fallout of patriotism that resulted after 9/11 still influences my sense of identity.

Many people of mixed race often live with a foot in the grand archway between two distinct realms, yet unlike them, I do not consider myself to be so defined as ethnic. What does that mean? Well, this is a question that has thematically interwoven itself throughout the entirety of our course. And one which I have addressed in my personal narratives by reflecting upon significant eras in my own life. I do not think I will ever solve the quandary of my race, but I believe we will all be better off, as controversial as it sounds, if we cease insisting upon its significance, politically. And to clarify, I am not saying that all talk of race is without truth value, and therefore meaningless. I am saying that until the indignation clouding our dialog of race is superceded, then we will never really be having a conversation.

At a predominately white private university, only so much of the ethnic demographic is composed of athletes. Yet blacks take to other blacks, Asians take to other Asians, is this the prize of diversity we’ve idealized?




El Caballo Blanco

El Caballo Blanco



El Caballo Blanco

In December of 1979, a group of friends known as the wealthy boys witnessed two people get murdered.

Seeing someone get shot is not unusual in the street of Guatemala, however, in La Colonia El Maestro, a wealthy community, seeing someone get shot was considered taboo.

La Colonia El Maestro – The Colony of Teacher, is a gated community that was once built only for teacher and their families.

This community is located in Zone 15- Zona Quince. A zone where mainly upper-middle class people live.

La Colonia El Maestro houses about 200 homes and two luxurious parks. One park holds a basketball court surrounded by tall pine trees. The wealthy boys called it ‘La cancha de básquet.’        Every day after dinner, the wealthy boys would go out to La cancha de básquet and play basketball until the sun went down.

The wealthy boys grew up together, they knew each others families, and practically considered themselves brothers.

The wealthy boys consisted of Roberto Reyes, Gerardo Estrada, Claudio Flores, Rodrigo Guzman, Sergio Rodriguez, and Abel Salazar.

Roberto Reyes was known as Chop. Chop was very athletic, and quite muscular for a 15 year old. His parents were wealthy and his mom was a well-known teacher.

Gerardo Estrada, he was known as the elite. His bloodline was full of politicians; in fact his uncle was once the president of Guatemala.

Claudio Flores, his parents owned their own pharmacy, Rodrigo Guzman, he was the spoiled rich boy who was really good at basketball, and Abel Salazar, he was annoying, loud, and was the troublemaker of the neighborhood.

In fact no one really liked Abel. The wealthy boys would always try to avoid him. They sometimes hung out with him only because they felt sorry for him.

On a warm sunny afternoon, Roberto was sitting on his lawn with is friends. The only boy missing was Abel.

The boys were laughing and were excited because Christmas was only few days away. Their excitement however, soon changed into curiosity and fear. Within less than a minute, the wealthy had witnessed Abel’s parents get murdered.

You see, Abel’s parents constantly got into argument with other. They defended their son no matter what ruckus he would get into. That day Abel’s father went out to confront his neighbor named Carlos.

Carlos had previously got into an argument with Abel, and for that reason Papà Abel felt the need fight Carlos. This was rare and unseen in this community.

As Papà Abel got closer to Carlos. Carlos in fear took two steps back and pulled out his gun.

He shot Papà Abel in the chest and head numerous times. The wealthy boys witnessed this. They saw the body of Papà Abel jump up and down with every bullet that entered his body.

Seconds later, Abel’s mother ran out her house and began to scream, “asesino, asesino. Carlos, asesino. mira lo que has hecho.”

With the last bullet in his gun, Carlos pointed his gun to Abel’s mother and shot her in the stomach.

Carlos drove off and left Abel’s parents dead on the street. Their bodies floated in blood, they both died instantly.

As the sun went down, the wealthy boys went home in distrust and terror. Roberto suffered the whole night in fear. He feared that Carlos would come back and kill him to lose evidence. He feared that the police would come and question him. And to make matter worse, he his family was out of town. He was left alone at home and had no one to protect him.

Around 2 in the morning he heard metal chains being dragged along with a horse prancing down his street. This startled Roberto because horses were only found in rural parts of Guatemala.

Chills ran up and down Roberto’s body. He laid in his bed in terror with the covers over his head. He dared not to look out his window for he feared he too would get killed.

The sound of the horse and the chains went on for about a minute. Roberto was scared, but was also curious to see what was outside. Roberto finally mustered up the courage to peak outside his window.

He would have regretted it though. He could not believe what he was seeing. He saw a massive white horse prancing down his street, and to make things scarier, riding the horse was a headless man.

As Roberto stood behind his bedroom window, he and the horse made eye contact. The horse flared his main and white smoke came out of his nose. That night was by far the longest and sleepless night Roberto had ever endured.

As the moon parted its way and the sun came out, Roberto had decided to call his best friend Gerardo. Roberto was curious and wanted to see if Gerardo had seen or heard the same thing.

To this day Roberto was the only boy who witnessed El Caballo Blanco.


El Caballo Blanco

            En diciembre de 1979, un grupo de amigos, conocidos como los chicos ricos fueron testigos de dos personas asesinadas.Viendo a alguien disparar una arma de fuego no es inusual en las calles de Guatemala, sin embargo, en La Colonia El Maestro , una comunidad rica, ver a alguien herido de bala era considerado tabú.

            La Colonia El Maestro, es una comunidad cerrada que una vez fue construida sólo para maestros y sus familias.

            Esta comunidad se encuentra en la Zona Quince. Una zona donde viven principalmente personas de clase alta.

            La Colonia El Maestro alberga cerca de 200 casas y dos parques de lujo. Un parque posee una cancha de baloncesto rodeada de altos pinos. Los niños ricos lo llamaban ‘La cancha de básquet’. Cada día después de la cena, los niños ricos salian a la cancha de básquet y jugaban baloncesto hasta la puesta del sol.

            Los chicos ricos crecieron juntos, se conocian por muchos años y prácticamente se consideraban hermanos.

            Los chicos ricos consistian en Roberto Reyes, Gerardo Estrada, Claudio Flores, Rodrigo Guzman, Sergio Rodríguez y Abel Salazar.

            Roberto Reyes era muy atlético, y musculoso para un joven de 15 años. Sus padres eran ricos y su madre era un profesora muy reconocida.

            Gerardo Estrada, fue conocido como la élite. Su linaje estaba lleno de políticos; de hecho su tío fue una vez el Presidente de Guatemala.

            Claudio Flores, sus padres eran propietarios de farmacias, Rodrigo Guzman, era el niño rico mimado y muy bueno en el baloncesto y Abel Salazar, tenia una personalidad irritante, problematico y les caia mal a todos.

            En realidada a nadie le caia bien Abel. Los chicos ricos siempre trataban de evadirlo,y veces se juntaban con el porque le sentian lástima.

            En una cálida y soleada tarde, Roberto estaba sentado sobre su césped con sus amigos menos Abel.

            Los chicos estaban emocionados porque faltaban pocos días para la Navidad. Sin embargo, su entusiasmo pronto cambió en curiosidad y temor. Dentro de menos de un minuto, los chicos ricos habían presenciado el asesinato de los padres de Abel.

            Los padres de Abel constantemente discutian con otras personas en el vecindario y siempre lo defendian y justificaban sin entender que su hijo era el que causaba los problemas. El padre de Abel ese día salió a enfrentar a su vecino que se llamaba Carlos.

            Carlos habia previamente discutido con Abel, y por esa razón papá Abel sintió la necesidad de confrontar a Carlos.

            Cuando papá Abel se acercó a Carlos, Carlos en miedo dio dos pasos atrás y sacó su pistola.

            Le disparó varias veces a Papà Abel en el pecho y la cabeza. Los chicos ricos fueron testigos de este crimen. Vieron el cuerpo de Papà Abel saltar hacia arriba y hacia abajo con cada bala que entró en su cuerpo.

            Segundos después, la madre de Abel salio de su casa y comenzó a gritar: “asesino, asesino. Carlos, asesino. Mira lo que has hecho. “

            Con la última bala en su pistola, Carlos apuntó con su arma a la madre de Abel y le disparó en el estómago.

            Carlos se fue y abandonó los cuerpos sin vida de los padres de Abel. Sus cuerpos flotaban en sangre, y murieron instantáneamente.

            Cuando anocheció, los niños ricos entraron en desconfianza y terror. Roberto sufrió toda la noche y pasó con miedo. Temía que Carlos volvería y lo mataria para eliminar evidencias. Temía que la policía lo questionara. Y para empeorar la situacion sus padres estaban fuera de la ciudad. El se habia quedado solo en casa y no tenía a nadie que lo protegiera.

            Alrededor de las 2 de la mañana escuchó unas cadenas metálicas siendo arrastradas junto a un caballo caminando por la calle. Esto sorprendió a Roberto porque los caballos solo se encontraban en partes rurales de Guatemala.

            Roberto sentió scalofríos correr en su cuerpo . Sintió mucho terror mientras estaba acostado y se cubrio su cabeza con sus sabanas. No se atrevió a mirar por su ventana porque temía que él también moriría.

            El sonido del caballo y las cadenas duró aproximadamente un minuto. Roberto tenía miedo, pero también tenía curiosidad por ver lo que estaba pasando afuera.

            Roberto finalmente se armo de valor y se acercó a su ventana par ver que era lo que estaba pasando.

            No podía creer lo que estaba viendo. Vio un enorme caballo blanco saltando por la calle, y para hacer las cosas peor, montado en el caballo iba un hombre sin cabeza.

            Mientras Roberto estaba parado detrás de la ventana de su dormitorio, él y el caballo hicieron contacto con los ojos y humo blanco salió de su nariz. Esa noche Roberto paso sin dormir.

            Cuando salió el sol el proximo dia, Roberto decidió llamar a su mejor amigo Gerardo, porque Roberto tenía curiosidad y quería ver si Gerardo había visto y oído lo mismo. Roberto fue el único chico que presenció El Caballo Blanco.