Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-08-21
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  EN LA VIDA

Homo Say WHAT!?
Paletero! Paletero!
by Tony Alvarado-Rivera
2003-10-01

facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


En la vida, hay momentos que digo, I am so-so glad to be me. There were also moments in my past, which I was so angry at being me. I was mad that I wasn't good at all the other stuff boys my age were good at. Instead of playing wrestling at the age of 10, I was busy taping my favorite songs off of Oldies 104.3.

Whenever el paletero came along, I was never asked which flavor paleta I wanted. No. No one cared that my favorite was and still is mango. Instead, they gave me the pink one because yo era rosita. I was pink. Now of course, I have no problems being pink. In fact, I welcome the opportunity of bending gender norms and breaking gender stereotypes. My past could very well be the reason I was always so funky back in school. I would bust out my 4-inch platform shoes, press on some polyester, and twinkle my eyes with a little red eyeliner—back when I was going through my 'I'm a druggie' look. ( I know, I was a mess, I'm the first to admit it. ) I would always have a cutest man bag, i.e. purse, to match my ensemble. Still to this day I don't know how I survived in the hood! The first time I ever did drag was during a summer retreat for future teachers.

The event wasn't made to mock the trans community, but it certainly didn't celebrate it either. I wasn't going to participate, but as the resident 'I'm here and I'm Queer' person, at the last minute I decided to give it a go. In two seconds I was out on Belmont shopping for a wig, a dress, and a pair of nylons. My look ... was a little retro and very neon green. The crowd went wild.

The next year, I tore up some material and made my very own Union Jack dress ala Geri Halliwell Brit Awards. It was then that my fancy for glamour was born. At shoe stores, I almost always find the cutest and cheapest stuff in the 'women's' section. I head down to thrift stores and buy bracelets and costume jewelry bigger than my dreams.

When my mom saw my nuevo look, she flipped and told me I was way too gay. Over my shoulder I carry the old-school plastic Mexican mercado bags and head to Dominick's with no reluctance.

If I could pull off the Frida Pre-Columbian look, you know I would have a changito on my back.

After my fancy for things classified for the 'opposite sex' continued, I had the chance to do a play in which my character has a one-minute costume change from corduroys into a black thigh-high dress. At first I was kind of reluctant because I didn't want to make a fool out of myself, but once I slipped on those heels over my nylons and took one look at my legs, I knew this experience was divine. Being in that dress, even though it was a character, was so exhilarating. It allowed this alter ego to come out and play. A person inside was dying to come out.

I was always afraid of letting that person out because I was supposed to be macho. And me being gay does not mean that I want to identify as a woman, but I for sure want to use my title to go all out and experience the joy of being a queer person.

In a culture driven by machismo and 'tradition,' there's so much to lose by being effeminate. I say, forget that ... make your own rules and learn to have fun with yourself. Let's rid ourselves of this 'sissyphobia' and learn to explore our genders a little more. Instead of looking down at las vestidas or las transvestites, make the connection that they gave us the freedom of being who we are.

Trans folk started the revolution, and now we dare look down on them? Sylvia Rivera, and others who have since passed, allow us to be free. Take her legend and learn to examine your gender and your roles.

Latino Gay men are far too often categorized into el hombre y la mujer. Break the mold, check a new box ... just learn to be yourself and then you will see how the world is so much more once you set your mind, body, and soul free! So come on comadritas, here comes the paletero ... I dare you to take a good lick of that pink paleta. ( wink-wink ) .


facebook twitter google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Reports: Wachowski back in the Matrix 2019-08-21 - Transgender filmmaker and Chicago native Lana Wachowski announced Aug. 20 that she would be directing a fourth Matrix film, according to Variety. Wachowski ...


Gay News

NATIONAL Trans death, ACA, 1957 gay wedding, serial killer 2019-08-21 - Several bridges and the city hall building in Houston were lit in transgender flag colors to honor the memory of Tracy Single, 22—a ...


Gay News

Study finds older transgender men who are pregnant risk depression, lack of care 2019-08-15 - Older transgender men who become pregnant need better mental health care than female counterparts Transgender men who become pregnant are at increased ...


Gay News

NATIONAL Trans march, Danica Roem, cannabis company, lesbian tech event 2019-08-13 - A National Transgender Visibility March on Washington originally planned for March 31 will now take place Saturday, Sept. 28, The Washington Blade reported. ...


Gay News

Trans ex-student prevails in restroom case 2019-08-11 - In Virginia, U.S. District Judge Arenda Wright Allen ruled Aug. 9 that a school board's transgender bathroom ban discriminated against former student Gavin ...


Gay News

Study Looks at Adolescent Experiences for Transgender Women of Color 2019-08-08 - Boston, MA, August 7, 2019—A groundbreaking study published in the most recent issue of Transgender Health finds that young transgender women of color ...


Gay News

ACLU opens arguments for trans prisoners' healthcare rights 2019-08-07 - ACLU of Illinois began arguments the week of July 30 for a federal injunction they say would improve healthcare conditions for transgender state ...


Gay News

Education board chair on pro-trans executive order, agency plans 2019-07-31 - After several years as a University of Chicago ( UChicago ) administrator, former Illinois State Board of Education official Darren Reisberg has returned ...


Gay News

WORLD Intersex survey, Russian activist, Polish publication 2019-07-30 - Kenya will, for the first time, collect data on intersex people in its national population census, in a major victory for rights activists, ...


Gay News

Pritzker signs restroom signage bill 2019-07-27 - Gov. JB Pritzker has signed SB 556, which amends the Equitable Restrooms Act to address signage on single-occupancy restrooms in the state. According ...


 



Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.