Monthly Archives: January 2011

Got Yorks?

“You know very well, who you are. Don’t let ‘em hold you down, reach for the stars.” Biggie Smalls

In this edition, I offer you the result of a question that was asked of me: Why do Islanders hate Us so much? This question got me writing a short list of plausible rationales of why, through no fault of our own, the sight of a York is the equivalent to the Antichrist for many Islanders. If I left something out, please add your own on the comments space. So, Islanders hate us because (drum roll please):

  • We don’t have to watch Seinfeld to experience what a diner is.
  • What We call the median salary, They call “to’ los cuartos del mundo.”
  • Their essentials: electricity, water, gas and a guachiman. Our essentials: a manicure, a dry-aged porterhouse, bubbly and Blahniks.
  • For Us, Comida China is not world-class cuisine.
  • Neither is Friday’s.
  • In The City, Fiesta Privada does mean Private Party. It is not code to keep black people out of establishments.
  • You never have worry about uttering the words: “me botán porque empecé a ganar demasiado dinero.”
  • Pedir fiao and pagar al paso are foreign concepts to Us.
  • You can always count on having your own apartment to do the naughty, instead of sneaking off to San Isidro to do the dirty.

Remember this: even if our parents are blue-collar workers because they unfortunately were not extended the same advantages others might have been born with, they raised us with the unequivocal belief that WE can achieve anything we desire. Therefore, what is  available to some Islanders through mere privilege, YOU have achieved through hard work.  (A special shout-out to all my first generation Yorks graduating from the Ivy League on this one! Rock on…)

We take pride in that despite that we do not come from a privileged background, our achievements, along with our perseverance, resilience and tenacity keep us grounded enough to appreciate and help those who are following in our footsteps.

It’s cold out there. Keep warm with some Irish coffee.

Response to Robert DR1

Dear Robert:

First and foremost I wish to extend my sincere gratitude for taking the time to personally address my letter as well as for complementing my blog.

I wish to address several points you have made in your response to my Open Letter to DR1, dated January 19, 2011

It is false that I had spammed your site. According to my research and unbeknownst to me, three people had posted my link or cut and pasted my writings onto your Dominicans Abroad message board. As a person who manages thousands readers, you must know Robert that one has little control over the readers that visit our sites.

Your statement that the banning was clearly expressed is also blatantly false. As a New Yorker, I understand the meaning of protocols and proper procedures. Hence, I had registered under the handle Nuala Knows and reached out to your moderator Alter Ego on January 15, 2001 to formally request permission to blog on your site. I had hoped I would have been extended the same courtesy of least an explanation if this were at all possible. Instead I received a reply that read as follows: You have been banned for the following reason: too many i.d. use 1 login and one only, date the ban will be lifted: Never. In my opinion, this does not constitute a clear explanation.

Furthermore, I have never accused you of being a shallow profiteer. That was a comment made by an anonymous reader. Trust me when I say that as a New Yorker I do understand that hard work, such as what you have put forth, merits compensation.  We could have had a discussion about advertising Nuala Knows on your site had your moderator presented this option to me. Once again, the fact that your site is admirably fashioned under American standards had fueled the expectation that I would be extended at least a letter of acceptance with stipulations (economic or not) or letter of denial with a clear rationale.

Finally, I wish not to engage in a cross-debate pertaining to this issue.  I just wanted to acknowledge your comment and further clarify your assertions. Please know that it is my opinion that your site is a touchstone in the Hispanic cyberspace. It shows proof of our Dominican ambition and perseverance.  I wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors.

Sincerely,

Nuala

Open Letter to DR1

See irony1 . 2, 3.  burlesque, caricature, parody, travesty. Satire, lampoon. Refer to literary forms in which vices or follies are ridiculed. Satire, the general term, often emphasizes the weakness more than the weak person, and usually implies moral judgment and corrective purpose.

Source:Random House, http://www.dictionary.com

Dear Members of DR1:

Several months ago a friend recommended that I subscribe to your site in effort to not only participate in the discussions contained in your forums, but to hopefully make my blog available to your readers. Upon much review and consideration, I had finally decided to reach out and formally introduce myself to one of your moderators on January 15, 2011. I had explained the purpose of my advertisement-free blog and had cordially requested permission to be allowed to write on your site.

No sooner did I submit my request and to my surprise and dismay, I was banned from your site with no explanation whatsoever.

It seems that the content of my blog has bristled your moderator to the extent of banning not just myself as the author, but also other fellow Dominicans who comment about my site.

I offer no apologies or justifications for the topics I write about, nor will I expect all readers to agree with me.  But it would be provincial of me to suppress the opinions of those who are in disagreement with my writing. Thus, part of being an educated individual is to allow opportunity for readers to discuss, reflect on and criticize the pieces I have put forth so far. To prohibit the aforementioned would be a doltish display of censorship that we might have seen in the Dominican Republic circa 1945. But then again, censorship is a part of the Island’s ethos, as proven by the countless numbers of songs and artists that have been banned throughout time. Hence, I was wrong to believe that I would be an exception.

I am thankful that as New Yorkers, we are lucky that the good people of DR1 are not in charge of our city. For there wouldn’t be SNL, Whoopie Goldberg, Dennis Miller, Michael Moore, Joan Rivers, Chris Rock and countless other personalities who provide the single most important thing that defines Western society: the freedom of expression to allow a social discourse that engages participants to laugh, scrutinize, and appraise our society. It is what allows Bill Maher and Ann Coulter to appear on the same stage, and why thanks to Dave Letterman, we laugh at the expense of Sarah Palin.  All this in good humor, but most importantly in effort to engage the audience in thought-provoking dialogue.

Finally, I wish to make it clear that I hold no grudges against the good people who run DR1.  Banning me is perhaps that best thing that has happened in my young life as a blogger. It gives me proof to vehemently continue what I have been asserting since the start of this site.  I invite you to stay tuned for my forthcoming piece: Islanders can’t handle some truth nor they can’t take a joke.

Cordially,

Nuala

Feliz New Year!

Happy 2011! May all of you have mamajuana wishes and sancocho dreams. To all you Dom-Yorks out there, keep it real… keep it positive… and keep striving.  We are the Dominican-American dream. Cheers to bilingualism and biculturalism. But most importantly, salud to never being defined according to social norms.