Showing posts from February, 2005

Constantine and Guam

Saw the film Constatine last week. Enjoyed it very much. Whoever edited it did such a bad job, I really enjoyed it. Actually, when something is as choppy as that in terms of dialogue, comprehension, hanging scenes, then you have to wonder if the machalapon nature of the flick isn't intentional. But then again, if you read Hellblazer comics, from which Constatine is derived, then you see how schizophrenic they can be, not necessarily because of the subject matter, but more because of the dozens of people who have scrapped together a personality for John Constatine, as well as the mythology for his universe. (I mean, you put Alan Moore, Garth Ennis, Grant Morrison and others in a room, and you're gonna be bileng with bloody fish and chips).

One line in particular stayed with me after I walked out of the theater. It was of course, the only line from Keanu in the whole film which didn't make me snicker because this might be the only film in which I will say he acted worse than …


Excerpts from a terrifying article about Guam written in the 1960's. Notice how alot of these representations and images still haunt us today, and can be heard amongst Chamorros themselves, or haoles, Filipinos and sadly (but expectedly) from politicians in Washington D.C.

From the Guam Daily News, November 24, 1968...

Guam's Role in the Pacific Still Uncertain
by John Griffin, editorial page writer, the Honolulu Advertiser

...Guam, generally considered as a military outpost and one of Oceania's less exotic ports of call.

Such old impressions are less untrue than incomplete. Certainly this territory of the U.S. has been neither richly endowed by nature nor treated kindly by history....

...Marine Drive the business district which stretches for miles along the waterfront, is an unplanned disaster of alternating old and new stories...

....The result is not always an attractive reflection of the U.S. influence. However it does point up the increasingly thick layer of Americanization …

Sigi' ha' kalamten

I got this email from a young Chamorro going to school out in the states. I get emails like this every once in a while, and they really help keep me going in my work and my life (if they can be seperated, I wonder about this far too much). Too often when you work in isolation, you tend to forget why you are doing things, and what impact you are making. Because of the way that we understand progress, action and activism we tend to view certain acts as being "real" while others are less real, productive or impactive. Although I know these hierarchies are often false or hardly secure, I sometimes fall prey to degrading my own activities because of them.

At the Chamorro Information Activists we are all spread out, meet every once in a while online and most of the time our work consists of responding to people's emails such as the one I'm going to post below. We get several dozen emails a week, usually from Chamorros in the states, usually in college who are interested in …


Estague un tinige' i ga'chong-hu. Ha tuge' este na kalang atdet i sinienten tinaiga'chong, kao annok?

Desde umayute' ham yan i hagas nobia-hu, hu nanangga taiguini. Ya kada na ha'ani hu diseseha mampos na u huyong un nuebu na guinaiya para Guahu. Ai lokkue.

Dream Lover
(sina) tinige' Naomi Cruz Sablan

There will come a time when things will fall into place
When the love will finally come and loneliness replaced
I long for the day when my dream of happiness comes true
But until then I await patiently for the love I crave from you

I don't know who you are or how you'll be
I know for sure I can feel if you're the one for me
And when that day comes, life will be bliss
with the warmth of your arms and your tender kiss

Dream love, ah, if only it wasn't just a dream
I wonder when will it happen or how long it will be
Will it be year's, months, days, or weeks?
I anxiously wait for that day we finally meet

Everywhere I go, everyone I see
All these people around a…

Play Si Pedro Onedera

Buenas Everyone:It is my pleasure to encourage and invite all of youto come and watch VULA, a play that captured myattention and heart last year at the 2004 9th Festivalof the Pacific Arts held in the Republic of Palau. Iwas a member of Guam's storytelling delegation and theVULA group was a part of New Zealand's storytellingdelegation.Among my colleagues at the time, this was the play Iwas encouraging them to go and watch at the Koror HighSchool. From that performance, I decided to invitethe cast and crew to come and perform this play onGuam. That dream has now become a reality and theywill be here on Guam to perform VULA at the Universityof Guam Fieldhouse on Monday, March 7; Wednesday,March 9, and again on Friday, March 11. Curtain timesfor all performances will be at 7pm. Tickets will beon sale at the following ticket outlets: Framed, Etclocated next to Le Tasi Bistro in Anigua; Studio 2-11in the Micronesia Mall; Faith Book Store at theCompadres Mall, and Sam Choy&…


Sigi ha' mahalang yu' put Guahan, mismo i tano'-hu. Ai adai, todu na lugat na humanao yu', chatguahu put este na siniente. Taimanu na sina hu na'homlo este na ti kabales giya Guahu?

Here's a list of my current chinatsaga' gi lagu.

I am struggling against the limits of invisibility (Chamorro, what is that? Guam,where is that?) and fending off rare moments of hypervisibility (Chamorro,patriotic semi-American! Guam, military base!) and doing my best to fightoff impossibility (You know Chamorro (language) sounds exactly likeSpanish...But you guys dress like Americans...So Chamorros are different than Hawaiians?...etc...)

Tinige' Nana-hu

Letter to the editor of the PDN, written last year by Si Nana-hu, about the whole Marine Drive Renaming scandal.

On February 8, 2004 I was reading the Pacific Daily News online, and I was so excited to see so many letters from people who were interested in protecting Guam’s history. Unfortunately though, the only parts that these people wanted to promote or protect was Marine Drive and Liberation Day.

While I am so glad to see these people excited about Guam’s history and remembering important events, I always get very confused when I meet these people or read their letters, who care only about promoting or celebrating the parts of Guam’s history that have to do with the United States’ military. Implying that we don’t mean much without the United States or its military, which I believe is totally false.

But in the spirit of celebrating and remembering our past, I guess I’m wondering where are all the letters to the editor about how important it is to protect the Chamorro Land Trust? Afte…

Tinige' Zizek ta'lo


by Slavoj Zizek - from

The Iraqi elections appear to authenticate the statement George W. Bush made in his January inauguration speech: “America will not pretend that jailed dissidents prefer their chains or that women welcome humiliation and servitude.”

It is difficult to disagree with Bush here: He effectively did touch the Achilles’ heel of many Western progressives, who were often disarmed by the one good argument, repeatedly evoked by Christopher Hitchens, for the war against Iraq: The majority of Iraqis were Saddam’s victims, and they would be really glad to get rid of him. He was such a catastrophe for his country that an American occupation in whatever form would be preferable to them in terms of daily survival and much lower levels of fear. We are not talking here of “bringing Western democracy to Iraq,” but of simply getting rid of the nightmare called Saddam. To this majority, the caution expressed by Western li…

Biba Ha'anin Guinaiya!

Estague un betsu na hu dedika para todu ni' manguaiya yan todu lokkue ni' tribia ma fakcha'i...


Abak yu’ gi I pakyo-mu
Chaochaochao lao suette yu’
Chubasko ya taifitme, Pat osino bei tekuni (hao)
Magof mafoyung-hu, hinalla ya sesso naofrågu (nene)
Måtmos yu’ ya mangge hao? Pinacha’ yu’ lao nao’ao (nene)
Hågu...I chi-hu
Hågu...I chi-hu

Taifinakpo’ I tasi, enkubukao-hu taiguini, (ombre)
Sesso un na’kilili, guaha na biahi nai un goggue (yu’)
Na’dafflok yu’ mangguaiya, na’klåru humitå-ta, (sångan)
Kao guahu I amti-mu? Pat Guahu I chetnot-mu? (Fehman)

The Contemporary Pacific

Bula na tiempo-ku hu na'lastima gi smursurfing i internet. Pot hemplo, sesso bai hu na'halom "chamoru" yan "blog" giya Google, ya bai hu li'e hayi i otro na Chamorro guenao gi hiyong i net ni' gaiblog (taiguini).

Gi painge', hu type halom "minagahet" ya hafa sinedda'-hu muna'lemlem yu'. Gi un issue The Contemporary Pacific, Si Kelly Marsh (pine'lo-ku na Si Kelly Kautz este) tumuge' put i zinen-mami, Minagahet,

Estague hafa mismo na tinige'-na, ya hu na'chetton i link guihi gi pappa'.

Though not much discussed, activist groups were busy this year. A Chamorro Information Activist bimonthly e-zine and forum board appeared, designed to promote alternative "ways and ideas of thinking" about Guam issues, to promote the Chamorro way of life, and to work toward the island's decolonization (<>).…

Tinige' Naomi Klein put Irak

Getting the Purple Finger

By Naomi Klein

"The Iraqi people gave America the biggest 'thank you' in the best way we could have hoped for." Reading this election analysis from Betsy Hart, a columnist for the Scripps Howard News Service, I found myself thinking about my late grandmother. Half blind and a menace behind the wheel of her Chevrolet, she adamantly refused to surrender her car keys. She was convinced that everywhere she drove (flattening the house pets of Philadelphia along the way) people were waving and smiling at her. "They are so friendly!" We had to break the bad news. "They aren't waving with their whole hand, Grandma--just with their middle finger."

So it is with Betsy Hart and the other near-sighted election observers: They think the Iraqi people have finally sent America those long-awaited flowers and candies, when Iraq's voters just gave them the (purple) finger.

The election results are in: Iraqis voted overwhelmingly to thr…

CO status

Sa' bula Chamorro ni' gaifamilia ni' sumaonao i setbisisu, put fabot chek out fan este na website. Bula na infotmasion put i sindalu ni' massa' nu gumegera, mamumuno' yan otro na kosas gera na gof baba yan atdet. To meggai na sindalu tumungo' put taimanu sina ma eskapayi i setbisisu, yan suhayi i gera.

Jon Anderson should apologize


Tinige' Senator Jesse Anderson Lujan ginnen i Marianas Variety

JON Anderson, on his talk show on the K57 radio station, a statesider-owned radio station on Guam, responded to my article in this paper that the stateside-owned media on Guam is biased against Filipino and Chamorro citizens of our community. It is my opinion that the stateside owned media on Guam are more lenient towards the malfeasance and misfeasance of stateside public servants, politicians and businesses and fail or refuse to criticize them for similar actions for which they energetically and consistently criticize non-statesiders.In part of his response to this criticism of statesider media bias, Anderson lobbed a personal insult my way saying I must be dreaming when I write this column. Given the context of the comment, Anderson clearly intended it as a personal insult. He did not intend it in the good sense of the word dreaming, as I along with many of our other residents of all colors…

Tinige' Zizek

from an interesting article by Slavoj Zizek

"Today, Iraq. Tomorrow...Democracy?"

The one good argument for war against Iraq is evoked by Christopher Hitchens: The majority of Iraqis are Saddam’s victims, and they would be really glad to be rid of him. He is such a catastrophe for his country that an American occupation in whatever form is a much brighter prospect for Iraqi citizens. We are not talking here of “bringing Western democracy to Iraq,” but of just getting rid of the nightmare called Saddam. To this majority, the caution expressed by Western liberals cannot but appear deeply hypocritical. Do they really care about how the Iraqi people feel?

In the same vein, I remember dozens of Western leftists in the early ‘90s who proudly crowed that “Yugoslavia still exists,” and reproached me for betraying the unique chance of maintaining Milosevic’s Yugoslavia—to which I always answered that I am not yet ready to lead my life so that it will not di…

Hafa este?

Here's a weird article from the College of Micronesia website. I can't seem to find who wrote it, but it mentions Chamorro women saying that we tell our children that gods and spirits cause the rain, instead of believing in what science tells us.

Its interesting to read, the author is obviously very angry, although I don't think he knows what he's angry at or even what he is attacking. He doesn't understand several passages he cites (for example by postmodern theorists) and therefore calls them names because of it.

Offisland Chamorros vs. On-Island Chamorros

Here's a excerpt from a thread on the Chamorro Information Activist message board, FANAHGUE'YAN ( Anyone interested in really talking about Guam and Chamorros stuff should head over there.

Sahuma: A discussion is brewing in one of the less frequented categories so I just thought I'd bring it up here, where more people post.

What is everyone's opinions on Chamorros stateside and on island? Alot of the people in this board are not on island right now, in fact demographically more Chamorros are offisland than on, so what's up? Do you lose a piece of yourself and your culture when you leave? Are Chamorros raised in the states just biologically more annoying and clueless? Can you re-connect to something you've probably never known? These are some of the issues involved.

Living in the states for half of my life I can tell you that you can re-connect, but its not as easy as everyone thinks it is. When most people talk about reconnecti…


I'm going to try and translate this into Chamorro, can't wait to see how it turns out...what fun, even I don't know what'll happen. Translation is a real battle, and the people who just do it, aren't thinking enough about the universe colliding and collapsing which takes place. I feel schizophrenic when I do it, because I can feel the limits of languages and of myself to bridge them.

We say that there are things in some langauges which can't be translated. Sina, lao ti sina. Statements like that are very powerful in making sure that such translations, such bridging of the gulfs between cultures, peoples and times never take place. The fact of the matter is, everything can be translated, but the difficulty lies in releasing oneself to allow it to happen. One to one transformation won't yield anything close, new or probably inspiring (that's not a true statement, even if it feels true, strict translations can reveal their own serendipities), the real beau…

Guam "sex capital?"

Massage parlors tackledGVB head: Guam not a 'sex capital'

By Ryota DeiPacific Daily News;
Ric A. Eusebio/Pacific Daily News/

By day, Guam's tourism district projects a family-friendly environment, with children playing at the beaches and young couples holding hands and shopping.

By night, however, Tumon can sing an entirely different tune. Solicitors and handbillers appear on busy San Vitores Road, passing out sexually explicit flyers in an attempt to entice tourists to receive massages and other services.

With about 60 to 70 adult businesses, including massage parlors, jostling each other in the area, it is difficult to call Tumon an ideal destination for families with children.

"We don't want to be known as a sex capital of Micronesia," said Tony Lamorena, general manager of the Guam Visitors Bureau. "We have families and little kids. If they see flyers or (signs with sexually explicit content), that will send a very…