On my 10-minute commute to work (yes, I am lucky) along a two-lane state road, I pass many shops that serve our Mexican residents, and I notice lots of store signs and billboards written in Spanish. Day laborers congregate at a designated church parking lot, providing a safe place for workers to gather — certainly safer than exit ramps and other roadside areas.
Are they marveling at our spring colors, uploading pictures of daffodils and dogwoods, sharing stories about seeing cardinals and blue jays? Do they scoff at what passes for ants around here? Or what passes for Mexican food? Wonder if the tap water is as potable as we say? Tell tales about our bureaucracy? Remark on the customer service at Marshalls or Macy’s? Wonder why the Walmarts here aren’t as nice? Are they blogging all this?
Our morning cleaning crew is outsourced, and guess where the workers come from. I wish I could engage in a little small talk with some of them. The guy I often catch sweeping around my desk at 9:30 a.m. lives in my neighborhood. It’s unlikely, but what if he’s from Yucatán? I once left a Yucatán Today on my desk hoping he’d see it, and maybe say something. He’s very proper, however, and I doubt he would say anything even if he did notice it. Do you think he blogs, or contributes to a Yolisto-type message board or Facebook group for Mexican nationals living in the U.S.? You know there has to be one of those somewhere online.
Our neighbors once had a houseboy named Bonifacio. It’s the only time I remember them having a houseboy. In our neighborhood, a houseboy is a strange concept. The lady of the house loved calling out in a singsong voice, “Bonny-FAAA-ceooo!” I remember him confronting two feet of snow with a snow shovel, placing him in unfamiliar territory. His overlords never bothered to demonstrate any technique. The man of the house is from Chicago, so I’m sure he could have offered Bonifacio some pointers. I wonder if Bonifacio blogged that experience?
I’ll bet younger Mexican nationals, between the age of say 14-20, are on top of this. They’re probably using Pinterest, Tumblr, or one of the newer and more expressive platforms. I’d love to find some, and I’ll link to them if I do.