Friday, March 11, 2011

Romeo Guzman from "Pocho in Greater America" Guest Blogging!

Pocho in Greater Mexico's Romeo Guzman

My blog, like many projects/ideas, has multiple origins. First, I hated writing: it was hard, stressful, and rarely pleasant. I read as many books about writing as I could manage. I gained some confidence, but was still unable to place my readers in a particular time and place. I started reading journalism with more attention to word usage and started a daily writing practice….Second, my pocho-ass was far from home. I was Mexican, kinda, sometimes, but it was experienced/thought about in drastically different ways. In Mexico City, my conversations with Froylan Enciso , Daniel Hernandez, Diego Flores Magon, Guillermo Osorno, my sis, Carri, and others were particularly enjoyable and often over beer.

As I experienced Mexico City I wanted to convey to friends back home what the city felt like: the archives, belonging to an intellectual circle, the appropriation/adoption of American and pocho/chicana cultural production, the yummy tacos chupacabras. In short being both a “cousin and stranger.” This sense, to quote a friend from Mexico City, of between in/out of space was felt in New York City. A city with a more recent migration, particularly from central and southern Mexico, Mexicanos who aren’t short and pale (like my ass). Not being recognized as Mexican was really odd, but seeing how more recent migration happened “on the ground” was/is a lesson in history. Yet, a ton of blogs were simply about experiencing aspects of Mexico City and NYC: graffiti in Neza, day of the Virgen in Manhattan, pink floyd being played by a banda, watching Mexico beat the US in Mexico City, radiohead being played at a graduation in a Mexican school…
            The more I wrote, the more enjoyable it became, though you all can decide on the quality. More importantly, it became a way to share my intellectual ideas and pursuits with los primos/as, my siblings, my tios/as, and parents. It provided needed breaks from long academic papers and made academia less alienating. Along the way friends and family encouraged me to continue writing the blog, in some cases suggesting to publish a post or two (Thank YOU). I submitted the eulogy I wrote for my gramps to acentos review. It was accepted and Cruz Medina and I started a cyperspace friendship: we learned that we are both pochos from so cal and that we both find studying poch@ productive. Cruz suggested we guest blog as a means to build pocho community in greater Mexico. An important beginning. The images on his two blogs are pretty dope, his fiction is really moving, so I was more than pleasant to partake in this collaborative pochismo.

I this sense I am interested in hearing how folks think we can continue to build community on the net. I am currently involved in helping found a cultural, intellectual, and archival space in Mexico City. Mainly, I’m trying to get as many pocho/a artists, intellectuals, writers, etc down to Mexico City to engage Mexicans and as many Mexicans up here to engage Chicanos/pochos/etc.  You can follow its progress here and more importantly can email me for more information/to propose projects, to talk shit, etc. As I sit in an archive in DC with my friend Israel Pastrana and research South El Monte it seems appropriate to conclude with what we feel is the most pressing question of our generation: how do we build a politics that reflects our transnational/undocumented/documented communities?


  1. like always, enjoy the reading!
    Your writings take me into viewing how you persive and live life; as a pocho, son, carnal, primo, nieto, friend etc... You got talent!
    Thank you!

  2. wow, or shall I say GWOW! Is that a surrealistic photo of ENRIQUE FLORES MAGON ??!! woh, mas firme ke gwow ! Looking forward to meeting you en El Monte Hayes ... good luck with the Magonista project, I'll be watching ... ! adelante bro