Showing posts from November, 2005

Kao un hongge este?


Airport, feds consider plight of original landowners
by Mindy Fothergill, KUAM News
Tuesday, November 29, 2005

After decades of waiting for the return of their property in Tiyan, original landowners have become the focus of concerns by the Airport and the Federal Highway Administration. While the local government returned the Tiyan land to their rightful owners, it appears there's no security as the feds and Government of Guam already have a plan for their property.

Ten years ago the Federal Aviation Administration turned over more than 1,400 acres of property in Tiyan to the Guam International Airport Authority. Executive manager Jess Torres says that property extends from the Airport runway to the Police Chief's Office. He explained, "When it was deeded back to the airport there were certain restrictions on those deeds among other things that I'm aware of that whatever property we got back from the FAA, from the navy via the FAA to the airport is…

What a Difference Madasai Makes

After more than a year and a half of growing my hair out, last week I finally decided to get it cut. My reasons for the drastic change were several. First, I'll be going to Guam in two weeks and considering how warm it is there, short hair will probably save me from alot of sweating. Also, long hair is gof mappot to upkeep and maintain. Shampooing, conditioning, tying it up, brushing it, playing with it. Too much work. With short hair I can go back to forgetting that I have hair at all.

Its Thankgiving break and so I've spent the past few days with my family and its been interesting hearing the reactions to my new haircut. First of all, I should warn everyone, my intrepid brother Jack cut my hair, and his only two qualifications which make him an "intrepid cutter of hair" are that he owns a shaver and he cuts his own hair. Responses from my family as well as people who have only known me with long hair have been priceless, which is the reason for this post on my hair.

10 Things to Be Thankful For

Published on November 24, 2005 by
10 Reasons to Give Thanks
by Medea Benjamin

This Thanksgiving, we who yearn for peace and justice have a lot to be thankful for. For starters…

We're thankful that Congressman John Murtha has joined us in calling for an end to the occupation of Iraq.

We’re thankful that the majority of Americans now agree with us that this war in Iraq was a mistake and the troops should come home as soon as possible.

We’re thankful that Lewis Libby has been indicted, that Karl Rove has become a liability for the Bush administration, and that Tom DeLay has fallen from grace.

We’re thankful that the George Bush’s approval ratings are under 40% and falling, and that his agenda—from the privatization of social security to the repeal of the estate tax—is unraveling.

We're thankful Judy Miller will no longer be reporting for the New York Times and that we now have a blossoming independent press—including weeklies, websites, blogs, community radio and cable T…


Ever since it became really really easy to upload images onto my blog, I've been tempted to go all out and start posting images like crazy. I've noticed alot of people out there with photo blogs, which are always heavy on comments like

naturelover says:

photofetish says:
I love the color!

stapledeyelids says:
You have a real eye for nature. What camera are you using?

I'm tempted to go that route, just so I can get more comments. Two big problems are though that I don't have a digital camera and I don't have a scanner. Thus, the journey from the shoebox loads of photos I take with my Staples $2.94 Fujifilm cameras to the internet is a difficult one. I've actually done this before, I've borrowed my friend's digital camera and taken digital photos of my printed photos and then uploaded them onto the internet to send them to people.

I'm at my family's this week for Thanksgiving break, and so there is a scanner here, and so I've been going all…


After finishing my first master's thesis earlier this year, its been a long hard road coming to terms with the limits of it. The most glaring problem is that the theory section in my first chapter was "faked." While I did read Roland Barthes Mythologies which I cite as what I will be using, in reality I merely used him as a screen to say whatever I felt like saying. Then there are the limits of my statements because I couldn't get to all resources I wanted. My descriptions of pre-war education in Guam could have been much more extensive, but at the time I felt like I had done enough research to make my points and needed little more. Two things that have happened recently have helped me see things in a better light. First off a received an email several weeks ago from Mari, a Chamorro attending school in Hawai'i and getting her masters at UH. I knew Mari from my message board and we've emailed each other often different things such as Anime and Guam politics. S…


For those who frequent my blog regularly, you might have noticed a bit of redecorating going on down the right side of the page. I've been blogging here for more than a year now and logged in more than 330 posts, so I decided it was time to start gathering together my "greatest hits" and just organizing my scattered posts so that people can get a better sense of my insanity (probably just a joke).

Just to orient you, I'll list the categories here and give a brief description of each of them.

FAMENTAYAN: The link to my old art website. Made more than six years ago after my first solo show, its very very dated, but still nice to look at. For those who teased me about my guest book, its not that no one comes by, its just that the guest book stopped working like five years ago.

FAVORITE POSTS: Obviously, the posts that I enjoy rereading the most and sharing with people.

GUINAYA - LOVE: A series of four crazy posts that I wrote in March of 2005, which basically set the tone f…


I've just sent out the invite for the Chamorro gathering to take place next April. I'm posting the final draft here, and please if you are interested in participating or supporting, please let me know.

FAMOKSAIYAN: Decolonizing Chamorro Histories, Identities and Futures
April 14-15, 2006

Ginnen i Manaina-ta siha. Ginnen i Mangguelo-ta siha. Hita I Chamoru, I taotao Guahan yan Luta yan Saipan yan Tinian. Hita i taotao tano yan i tasi. Mungga en fanmaleffa I Manma’pos yan Fanmanhasso todu tiempo put I Manmamaila.

Ginnen Manu Hit? Hayi hit pa’go? Para Manu Hit? These are questions of our past, present and future which we can never ever let go. As simple as these questions may appear, finding indigenous answers to them is harder than one would think. While questions of cultural preservation (What to keep?) and adaptation (What to change?) are vital to our survival, they must always be asked in relation to less visible and potentially more difficult problems which…

The Inner Universe of a Stand Alone Complex

At first Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex was very hard to watch. I can no longer truthfully say that I identify with the State and with "good guys" in films or tv shows. Too often, cop shows, battle between Good and Evil echo for me the current War on Terror and other violent policies of globalization and American (and other nations as well) policing. At first I saw Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex as just another lame screen upon which the fantaises for the War on Terror get acted out. The State and its agents are technologically advanced, often times too technologically advanced, the cyborgs don't even know their own strengths sometimes, the slightest hit causing shattering damage. Their enemies are either poorly equipped, trained or organized multitudes of terrorists or societal discontents, or they are faced with a lone singular enemy who is uniquely more savy and threatening, who often times stands in for the State's excess (the Tank for example w…


The other day I watched Bright Future directed by Kiyoshi Kurosawa. I agree with one person I spoke to about it, who said that it requires several viewings to get a sense of. Its true, the dialogue was so intentionally full of holes at times, it made interpretation very interesting. The characters themselves float around, unable to fully anchor themselves to their speech, and they at times react to their ambiguous statements as we react to them, with uncertainty and a desire for fidelity.

The film ends with a gang of Che Guevara t-shirt wearing youth, walking the streets, kicking around cardboard boxes to the song Mirai by The Back Horn. Its an interesting scene, seductive if only because of its apparent lack of seduction. A banal scene, who excessive banality somehow creates its very opposite.

I've posted the lyrics below, because it represents another ambiguous hit, which far from being an identification based on knowing what the character feels, is an identification based on how …

Let's Chat in Chamorro About Hindi Movies Part 5

Manuet: Hoi Miget, lana dei prim, todu maolek?

Miget: Maolek ha', maolek ha'.

Manuet: Kao sigi ha' sesso umegga' hao kachidon Hindi?

Miget: Ahe' che'lu, pumara yu'.

Manuet: Diaplo umbe! Sa' hafa?

Miget: Sa' lana che'lu, o'sun yu' nu i lina'la' i manriku. I manakhilo'.

Manuet: Hafa kumekeilek-mu?

Miget: Kumekeilek-hu, na esta os'un yu', esta kalang taisabot i kachido siha put ayu na klasin taotao siha.

Manuet: I manriku?

Miget: Hunggan. Umbe lai, kao mansion i gima'-hu? Kao mansion i gima'-mu?

Manuet: Ahe', ahe'.

Miget: Pues nu Guahu ayu na kachido siha ti magahet, it relevant nu i tano'-ta, i tano'-hu nai, sa' hayi luma'la' taiguihi? Hayi luma'la'la' gi un mansion, gi un palace? Ti Guahu, yan taya' i abok-hu. Pues i finaisen-hu, mangge' i kachido siha put i manmoble?

Manuet: Hu komprende i siniente-mu lai. Atan Khabie Kushi Khabie Gham, lana hayi este na taotao Si Amitabh na…

Just Left of the Setting Sun

Biba Julian! Maolek i bida-mu che'lu. Sigi ha', fausuni mumumu!

Yanggen gaige hao giya Guahan, fanhanao yan fahan este na lepblo.

If you're on island, go out and buy this book.

Call to consciousness:
Chamorro author launches a collection of essays that chronicle the local struggle for human rights, dignity and recognition
By Jojo Santo Tomas Pacific Sunday New

Say the name Julian Aguon, and if you know him at all, you might conjure up an image of a slightly chubby high school student crooning the National Anthem to 20,000-plus people at Adelup, in celebration of President Bill Clinton's visit to Guam seven years ago.

Today, the former teen reporter for the Pacific Daily News is back in the newspaper, though on the other side of a byline. He graduated from Gonzaga University last year and has since focused his energy on bringing to light the troubles that he says the Chamorro people have faced in years past and especially now.

Aguon, 23, received a grant to pursue his passion, …


Chamorro conference update!

I've finally finalized the dates for the conference, April 14 and 15, 2006 at the Sons and Daughters of Guam Club in San Diego. Matto di mampos exciting este!

I'm posting the latest draft of our call for papers/invite for the conference below, I'll be sending it out early next week so if you want to give me some feedback on it, please post it here or email it to me.

Otro fino'-ta, the decision to name the conference Famoksaiyan is explained in the text below.

Call for Papers
FAMOKSAIYAN: Chamorro History, Identity and Decolonization
April 14-15, 2006

Ginnen i Manaina-ta. Ginnen i Manguelo-ta. Hita I taotao Guahan yan Luta yan Saipan yan Tinian. Hita i taotao tano yan i tasi. Mungga maleffa I Manma’pos yan Fanmanhasso todu tiempo put I Manmamaila.

Ginnen Manu Hit? Hayi hit pa’go? Para Manu Hit?
These are questions of our past, present and future which we can never ever let go. As simple as these questions may appear, finding indigenous answers to the…

Dating Hysteric

I posted several months ago that I was a "dating hysteric." I received a few interesting emails asking for some information on what exactly that is. Some out of simple interest, others hoping to either diagnose or undiagnose themselves with this social affliction.

To make something clear first, a hysteric is the last person you should ask to describe hysteria. One earnest soul, asked me to clarify what I meant, "does it just mean you can't express yourself to the people you want to express yourself to?" My reply was probably about six pages long, in the form of a single spaced email which wandered through dense theoretical texts and shameless pop culture references. I'm far too embarassed to share my entire reply with everyone out there, but at least I can let see a few small sliver like hints of how strange my response was.

My last attempt to describe what a dating hysteric is included references to the following:

Ecrits by Jacques Lacan (the speech on "…

Alain Badiou and Kanye West?

When you fall deep into the reading of a particular theoretical framework, if you ever imagine that you emerge from it, you will see that framework waiting within or stapled upon nearly all you encounter.

A confrontation with Hegel and The Phenomenology of Spirit will, like a rainstorm, leave traces upon your glasses which will follow you everywhere, always referring you back to "dialectics," Universal and the particular, and how the movement by which exteriority becomes interiority (something out there, always somehow becoming a manifestation of something "in here."). eading Derrida will always force one to confront the everyday and insurmountable impossibility and undeciability of life. Foucault, whether one likes it or not, makes amorphous and ambiguous "power" a regular part of your vocabulary.

After my recent encounter with the theories of Alain Badiou from Being and Event I found myself seeing and hearing his theories everywhere, even while I was walk…

Feminisms and Militarisms

Minagof siempre. Bula minagof. Hu risibi este na katta gi i email box-hu, ya gof malago' yu' bei na'tungo' hamyo put Guiya. Ti apmam i fine'nina na ofisiat na tinige'-hu para u mapublish! Gof ya-na i editor i tinige'-hu ya sesso ha email'i yu' put este. Didide' mamahlao yu' sesso, lao ti bei puni na magof yu' lokkue.

Gi i ma'pos na simana, hu risibi i dinescribe (description) i anthology nai u gaige i tinige'-hu. Pues put i minagof-hu, pine'lo-ku maolek na bei post gui' guini. Estague gui'.

Gender and Militarism Across the Asia-Pacific

This anthology brings together seminal and groundbreaking essays that examine the interlocking histories of militarism, colonization and resistance to militarism across the Asia-Pacific over the last half-century. Building on the work of scholars such as Cynthia Enloe and Margo Okazawa-Rey, the authors further elaborate and theorize the intersections of race, gender and militarization as s…

Why the Bones Should Be Buried

There are many Chamorros who believe that the bones of our ancestors which are uncovered or which are repatriated should be given to science and thus studied so that we can learn as much as possible about ourselves. I'm skeptical about this, and the first step in understanding my skepticism is listening carefully to the way in which this "quest for knowledge" is articulated. As one Chamorro told me recently, the bones that we find should be given to science so that we can "know where we came from."

It seems innocent enough, seems intelligent enough. The question of origins is what drives all people, right? Well, maybe, but not really. For indigenous peoples this "search for origins" is a rigged game, it is a process which only undermines their existences, whether its a white archeologist doing the search or a Chamorro.

This is the dangers of using anthropological knowledge to assert the existence or the identity of an indigenous person. You are using th…

Latin America Rebukes Bush

Published on Sunday, November 6, 2005 by The Nation
Chávez and Maradona Lead Massive Rebuke of Bush
by Jordana Timerman

Some aspects of George Bush's travels have become commonplace, including massive protests, sporadic violence and tight security operations. All of these usual elements--notably the imperial-style arrival of the US president with an entourage of 2,000 people and four AWACS surveillance systems--were present at the Fourth Summit of the Americas in Mar del Plata, Argentina.

But the opposition to Bush and his proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA), as well as neoconservative economic policies and capitalism in general, took on a creative twist this time, with a massive march that ended in a rally at a sports stadium involving a heterogeneous group of Latin American leaders: Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, Bolivian socialist leader Evo Morales, Argentine leaders of the unemployed, Mothers of Plaza de Mayo, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, singers from all over th…

The Threat of Hope in Latin America

Published on Friday, November 4, 2005 by The Nation
The Threat of Hope in Latin America by Naomi Klein
When Manuel Rozental got home one night last month, friends told him two strange men had been asking questions about him. In this close-knit indigenous community in southwestern Colombia ringed by soldiers, right-wing paramilitaries and left-wing guerrillas, strangers asking questions about you is never a good thing. The Association of Indigenous Councils of Northern Cauca, which leads a political movement that is autonomous from all those armed forces, held an emergency meeting. They decided that Rozental, their communications coordinator, who had been instrumental in campaigns for agrarian reform and against a Free Trade Agreement with the United States, had to get out of the country—fast. They were certain that those strangers had been sent to kill Rozental—the only question was, by whom? The US-backed national government, which notoriously uses right-wing paramilitaries to do its …

Despensa yu' ta'lo

For the past few weeks I've been trying to post regularly, but its been tough for the past week or so. First I went up to Berkeley last week to give a talk in my friend's class and then spent a few days up there hanging out with friends. And then tomorrow I'll be heading out to Washington D.C. and the American Studies Association Conference to participate in a roundtable discussion on the state of Chamorro scholarship. If the blog appears abandoned for a while, its because the hotel I'll be staying at has no internet access. But I'll be sure to back post once I'm back in San Diego

video game mistress

Manieniente yu' romantiko didide' sa' humalom ta'lo gi lina'la'-hu i "video game mistress"-hu. Para hamyo ni' sesso matto yan taitai i tinige'-hu siha guini, este i palao'an na ilek-hu gi i summer na ya-hu didide' sa' ya-na vumideo games.

Umasodda' ham gi i ma'pos na simana giya San Francisco, ya hu siente ta'lo masokkai. Ti hu tungo' hafa i magahet na palabra para este na siniente gi fino' Chamorro, lao i verb "sokkai" mas inos nu Guahu. Sa' mismo ti un ekspekpek i siente, kalang mamamokkat yu' gi i halom tano', taya' un ripapara, ya BAM - sinekkai yu' ni' i bininta-na yan minangge'-na este na palao'an.

Pues, gi este na espiritu, bai hu na'li'e hamyo i palabras-na un kanta-hu put guinaiya. Ti betsu ha', mismo kanta, ya i tiune-na Nothing Compares to You ginnen i Me First and the Gimmie Gimmies.

Na’hasson Hagu

Halacha nai un dingu yu’
Ya un na’ yu’ taiga’chong


Something interesting happened to me today. I had a "street" game of six degrees of separation. Somehow I got involved in talking about movies with this guy while waiting in the financial aid office and so I asked him if he'd ever played the game. He said he'd heard of it, but always thought it was called six degrees of Kevin Bacon. I decided to have a test match with him, so he could see how it works, how a match can sometimes last ten seconds or ten minutes.

For those of you unfamiliar with the game, you take two actors or actresses and then using the movies they've starred in and the actors and actresses that they've co-starred with, you connect them to each other. The streets matches I had today were pretty easy, just to give this guy a sense of the game. One round was Ed Harris to John Candy. There are plenty of ways that you can connect them, but the one which I came up with the quickest was Ed Harris to Tom Hanks in Apollo 13 and Tom Hanks to John Candy…