Welcome to WEEK 12 of #ChingonaFest Fridays on Aspiring Mama!
If you’re new to the blog, here’s the link to the my Latina Dimelo column that sparked the conversation that’s still going strong. The premise is this: I want to raise my daughter to be a Chingona — on purpose, Las Tias and cultural backlash be damned. If you like the column, I’d love for you to share with your social media circles, leave a comment on the link, or whip up a happy lil’ Letter to the Editor telling them how you feel and send it off to Editor@Latina.com. You may not think that kind of thing makes a difference, but trust me when I tell you it does.
Have you checked out my past #ChingonaFest ladies? I interviewed myself to mark my year anniversary as Latina Magazine's Dimelo Advice Columnist right before Lorraince C. Ladish made me look bad in last week
s interview by referring to books I pretended to read in high school. Each week, I’m featuring one fabulous Latina who’s moving mountains and raising hell because their stories are worth telling. Twenty questions will be presented to each and 15 will be answered and presented here to you in a Q&A format, like the fancy features in magazines, only with more typos and less airbrushing.
Today’s featured Chingona is …Elisa Camahort Page.
Camahort Page is a BlogHer co-couner and, amongst other honors, was also a Fortune Most Powerful Entrepreneurs, 2013.
And now? It’s time for the interview!
Pauline Campos: Chocolate or vanilla?
Elisa Camahort Page: Vanilla
PC: A straight-shooter. I like it. Favorite book and why:
ECP: That's a tough one, I love many books. Perhaps Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer had the most impact because it articulated a philosophy I already subscribed to in terms that were relatable to regular people who might not have my same activist fervor on the subject.
Pauline Campos: *blinks* My IQ just developed a complex. Do you consider yourself a feminist?
PC: There's that straight-shootin' again. I like a woman who tells it like it is. Who inspires you?
ECP: The BlogHer community inspires me every day. Every day *someone* tells an amazing story, does something incredibly brave, makes real change in their life, their community, or the world. It's crazy actually. Crazy how much talent and passion are out there...this despite the regular conventional wisdom proclaiming the death of the very blogging that creates that inspiration.
PC: Who is it you hope to inspire?
ECP: The BlogHer community has so many new folks still flooding into this space every day. I hope to inspire them to do social media and blogging *their* way. There is no one right way. There is no single one-size-fits-all approach. There is so much opportunity...knowing what you want to grab from that grab bag is important.
PC: I was just gong to say "Anything dipped in chocolate" but I think that you've got a T-shirt quote somewhere in that last one. Lemme have my coffee first... Do you dream in color or black and white?
ECP: I don't remember, actually. Why, do you know what that means?
PC: Not a single clue. Also? I should Google that one so I have a slightly smarter answer the next time a featured Chingona throws this one back in my court. Speaking bad words redfined... Let's play word association. I say CHINGONA and you say...?
ECP: Huh? You're the chica who introduced me to the term :)
PC: ummmm... *blinks slowly* Well? The short answer is DON'T SAY CHINGONA IN CHURCH. Also, it's probably not a good idea to yell the word out randomly in public, 'being as I like you, and and all. Also, did you know "pinche" is a bad word in Mexican Spanish but means "barette" in Chilean Spanish? You're *welcome*. Why are you giving me the side-eye? Focus, Woman! Quick! One takeaway you want your children to hold onto after they've grown and flown the nest...
ECP: Not applicable...no kids :)
PC: Fair enough. Do you feel "Latina enough"?
ECP: Definitely not. I don't even call myself Latina, although I will say I'm Hispanic. But, for example, I never learned Spanish...I think when I was growing up there was a lot more assumption that immigrants would assimilate and less expectations that their children would retain any culture. Add on top of that my family is a mixed family originating from Spanish immigrants to the Philippines. So much of my connection to the culture is through food...which was actually kind of a mix of Spanish and Filipino. And being spanked with a slipper...which I think is more of the Asian side of that equation ;)
PC: Don't take this the wrong way, Elisa, but we gotta talk. Because every Mexican reading this just choked and simultaneously yelled out "LA CHANCLA"! Anyway, you have the chance to eat dinner and drink wine with one person, living or dead. Who is it, what do you eat, what kind of wine, AND WHY THAT PARTICULAR PERSON?
ECP: Stephen Sondheim. Why? Because I'm a #theatrenerd and he is completely brilliant and my idol.
PC: You are totally smarter than a fifth grader, aren't you? *runs off to Google the name the smart lady just said* Do you chew your ice cream? (Or is that just a Me thing?)
EC: That is definitely just a you thing.
PC: Admit it. You think I'm adorable, don't you? Gimme one Latina stereotype you despise?
ECP: Oh, I guess it's the whole kit and caboodle...fiery Latinas, sexy Latinas, spicy Latinas...and then there's the indomitable Latina matriarch. The problem with any stereotype is that it ignores the diversity within diversity. That Latinas are not a monolithic bloc, just as women aren't, just as no group is like the Borg.
PC: You win the Internet for using the Borg to bring that last point home, Elisa. *High five* Describe your perfect day.
EC: Well, it would start with actually getting a full night's sleep #damnyouinsomnia. Then I would probably chillax with my cat and my iPad full of all the books I never have time to read. I'd be playing music. And my S.O. could join for a couple of great meals of #vegan food!
PC: One Latina stereotype you embrace (or is there one?)
ECP: Yeah, in case it wasn't clear, not very into embracing stereotypes :)
PC (grinning): Nope...everything is crystal...
And there ya have it. To nominate a Latina for a future #ChingonaFest Friday feature, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet me with the hashtag #ChingonaFest. And don’t forget to check out my latest Dimelo Advice column on Latina Magazine. Girlfriend needed a reality check…so I gave her one.
Oh! And be sure to send me your questions to email@example.com.
Who like Pretty Pictures? I'm #MexicaninMaine on Etsy and have more art available on Society6. And because it's actually relevant, check out my Zazzle and Etsy shops for Sassy #ChingonaFest gear! More designs and products coming soon!
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