CrispAds Blog Ads

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


The Texas Latino Council of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing held a conference in Austin, last weekend. It was the first ever to be done in Texas in regards to Deaf Latinos. New Mexico had theirs the previous year or two. I had caught some people comparing the two and saying that while NM was good, the conference in Texas was far more successful.

Next year, there will be national conference on Deaf Latinos in DC. I believe it'll be somewhere in October.

There was over 100 people there. There were people from Texas, Mexico, New Mexico, Illinois, Wisconsin, Maryland, DC, Virginia and New York. I don't recall anyone from Arizona and there wasn't anyone from California.

Well, Thursday morning, I got up about 4:30 in the morning. I had to catch the MARC to BWI. Cheap tickets = early flights I got to Austin about 1 in the afternoon. Went out and had lunch at Magnolia Cafe South with my good good good friend, Barbie, and her 2 friends, Mae and Rose. Magnolia had one of the best nachoes I've ever had.

Afterwards, Barbie and I went shopping in those little hippie stores downtown, near TSD. She was looking for birthday gifts for her eldest son. Then, we went to her workplace to chill out before I had to meet my family and she had to go to a meeting. While we were relaxing, I saw an old friend of mine, Dan, whom I've met when I was going to SAC. Barbie and Dan were interpreting students when I was going to SAC. It's just amazing to see how time have passed. They're now professional interpreters and have progressed to higher levels of state certification.

Later that night, I went to meet Dad and a cousin of mine, Susan, who had just relocated to Austin from San Antonio, at Matt's El Rancho. Now, this place had some good Mexican food. The only thing I wasn't impressed were their tortillas. I like my tortillas "powdery" from the flour.

Anyways, it was good to see Dad and Susan as well as an old friend of hers, Raven. We had a good time catching up on news and talking about the paranormal and the supernatural stuff. How we got to those topics...I dunno.

After that, I went back to Barbie's place and hung out. I was surprised to see another old friend, Amber, back in my SAC days. Amber drove up from Houston with her Deaf girlfriend, Thea (from Maryland). While I flew in for the conference, Barbie and Amber were preparing to interpret for the Austin City Limits music festival, along with other interpreters.

Anyways, it was good to catch up with Barbie, Amber and Thea. It was just wonderful being there.

Friday was the first day of the conference. I attended workshops by Letty Arellano, Carla Garcia, Alyson EU Sanchez, Maribel Garate, Debbie White, Terri Mittelsteadt, Francisca Rangel and Linda Lugo Hill. Mark Morales gave a wonderful show, reenacting his childhood story about a pinata. The day ended with a round table discussion, held by Melly Serrano.

Overall, it was a pretty good day, filled with interesting and new information about Deaf Latinos and services and needs.

I saw some old friends from Texas as well as from Gallaudet. Ovi, Shay, Lori (and her hubby, Jaime, who is a fellow frat bro), Safeera, Debbie and a few others. Saw plenty of familiar faces from Gallaudet. Met new people and made new friends.

Sammy Ruiz and Manny Hernandez gave a show at TSD. I was too worn out for more mass gatherings. Instead, I went out and had dinner with a good brother of mine, David. It was good catching up on news with him.

Afterwards, I went back to Barbie's place. The interpreters weren't finished with the ACL thing until 10 that night and plus they had to deal with traffic. However, when they came back to the house, the brought along someone else, Bonnie. Bonnie is also the other person I met at SAC. She was an interpreting student. However, she shifted her goals and is now one of those head honchos of the Career Center at UTSA. She is a strong Deaf ally and advocate at UTSA. In fact, she's also a good friend of Marc Rubin. Some of you may remember that I blogged about him, not too long ago. He's the guy that made the news for being the first Deaf person to work for the military overseas.

Anyways, we were just having a great time in the backyard, catching up on news and laughing so hard. We were up til 3 in the morning. We would've kept on going but one of the neighbors came out and complained we were being too loud with our laughters. Opps! So, we were like...I guess we ought to go to bed.

Saturday was also another day of workshops. I attended those by Dr. Jean Andrews, Ovi Valasquez, Dr. Angel Ramos and some other presenters from the previous day.

Again, it was interesting as well as an eye-opener for me and others. I went out to lunch with Julie, Paloma and Jesse Jones, who was in town, recruiting.

For dinner, I didn't go to the banquet. Instead, I hung out with my cousin, Susan. We, somehow, ended up out of town, past Round Rock. When we got on 35, we decided to go to Barnes & Nobles to hang out and drink coffee. However, it turned out that there were no bookstores, in sight by the highway, in north Austin. I was like, do people in the northern area not read? It was confirmed by another person that bookstores are numerous in central and southern Austin. Hmmmm, interesting.

Anyways, we had a good time catching up on family and other stuff. One of the topics was about her being an interpreter. I think she would do a fantastic job since she is a visual person. She surprised me by giving some signs that she had learned from middle school. This is like 20 years ago. And her signs were accurate. She seemed to be interested...so see see.

Afterwards, came back to Barbie's and hung out. I told myself that I wasn't gonna go to sleep. I had an early flight at 6:55am. I was afraid that if I went to bed at 3am, I wouldn't get up in an hour to get ready. So, I stayed up. Everyone went to bed as they had to interpret for the last day of the music festival in a few hours. So, Bonnie and I were up, catching up on our families.

Of course, by the time I was ready to pack and fly out, I was so sleepy. I dropped of the rental car, checked in for the flight, had an early breakfast and plopped my ass down for the plane boarding. As soon as I boarded the plane, I was OUT! I woke up an hour later in Dallas to change planes. Again, once I boarded, I was OUT til I arrived in BWI. I don't think I've ever slept through an entire flight before. Usually, I'll nap for an hour and then I'm up for the rest of the flight, reading a book.

Overall, I enjoyed myself in Austin. The conference was good! I'll definitely return in 2 years. I'll blog more about the specific workshops later.


I heard that the Deaf GLBT Coffee Social, last week Friday, was also another success. Awesome! Hope y'all will come out for October's. Last year October was our biggest, since we had people coming to DC for Gallaudet's Homecoming and CMRA's Eye Party. See y'all there!!!


News of the Day:

- The Deaf community has once again been scammed by another college professor. Lawdy! Doesn't anyone know not to give in to these emails that promise to return your financial investment plus more money?!?

- Finally, there is a study (documented research) that 1 out of every 10 "straight" men have gay sex or on the downlow. 70% of these men are married. The bad news is that these men are less likely to practice safe sex or get tested for HIV as compared to gay men.


Well, have a good day! ta ta...