Showing posts from November, 2012

I Chalan i Anineng

If any of you have ever wondered what a page of the manga Lone Wolf and Cub would look like translated into Chamorro, here is a page from one of my favorite issues.

I wrote about this exchange a few weeks back in my post titled "Lone Wolf and Bamboo Spear."


Articles on the brutal crackdown in Gaza by Israel from the website Common Dreams. 


Published on Monday, November 19, 2012 by the Independent/UK
Journalistic Cliches: 'Surgical Air Strikes', 'Rooting Out Terror', and 'Cyber-Terrorism' Cannot Conceal Reality by Robert Fisk Terror, terror, terror, terror, terror. Here we go again. Israel is going to “root out Palestinian terror” – which it has been claiming to do, unsuccessfully, for 64 years – while Hamas, the latest in “Palestine’s” morbid militias, announces that Israel has “opened the gates of hell” by murdering its military leader, Ahmed al-Jabari.

Hezbollah several times announced that Israel had “opened the gates of hell” for attacking Lebanon. Yasser Arafat, who was a super-terrorist, then a super-statesman – after capitulating on the White House lawn – and then became a super-terrorist again when he realized he’d been conned by Camp David; he, too waffled on about the “gate…

A Month of Writing Constantly

I feel like I haven't been posting much and I'm not sure how true this is. 
I feel like I've been neglecting several things this month because of work and also because I'm participating in NaNoWriMo. The goal of National Novel Writing Month is to write 50,000 words of your novel before the end of the month. Right now, with five days left to go I am at 35,000 words. I am pretty certain I can make it, but with all my other obligations as well, I'm starting to feel the crunch. 
I wanted to share an early part of my novel. It is titled "The Legend of the Chamurai" and tells the store of how Samurai and Chamorro warriors end up defeating a Spanish invasion of Guam in 1616. This story takes place over 600 years with different makahna or Chamorros with magical and superhuman abilities try to keep hope alive of defeating a mysterious force that will come to obliterate them. Part of the fun of this story is that I get to bring into a story about Ancient Chamorro …


One of the high points of my life was the conference Famoksaiyan: Decolonizing Chamorro Histories, Identities and Futures. It was a gathering, the first of its kind, which I helped organize in San Diego in 2006. Chamorros living in the United States have for long held gatherings and formed organizations to keep their cultural and family ties. These organizations would focus around shared village ties or the Chamorro calendar, and so each year there are village patron saint fiestas and Liberation Day events from California to Nebraska to Florida.

While these gatherings would be fun and help families keep their ties even across great distances, they were hardly political affairs. They were meant to celebrate Chamorros as a social, cultural and religious group, and so more serious topics affecting Chamorros weren’t usually discussed. Myself and several other Chamorros attending college in the states decided that we wanted to create a space where Chamorros, especially i manhoben, could tal…

Gangjeong Dreams

My pare' Julian Aguon always talks about people on Guam today having no imagination. How they cannot see the world as having any richness or possibility, especially in a local context. They see the world through dependency and inadequacy, and as such everything around them, especially the future is fearful and frightening. You feel like you can't do anything because the delicate threads that you depend upon might snap if you do. 
I agree with this metaphor for understanding things on Guam, but I often use "dreams" instead. Dreams are closely related to imagination. Imagination is what you can see, how you can stretch what you take as given in the world and expand it and push it, and hopefully yourself further. Dreams are what you see as possible, viable or beautiful as you move towards the future. It is a question of desire and what you want. Imagination is what you can want, dreams are an indication of what you want and where you see yourself moving in order to obt…


I haven't been painting much lately, but I decided to do something about that last week and ended up painting several faces using watercolors.

These are two that I submitted to the Creative Hands Exhibition at the Isla Center for the Arts.

There titles are "Hot Woman" and "Cold Woman." I really like how they turned out. I hope they accept both pieces as I think they contrast each other nicely.

Understanding Guam's Colonial Past/Present

History has a way of reminding you that what you take for granted today did not exist in the past, and worse yet, there may have been a point in the past when what you take for granted today was unimaginable. There is one quote from Robert Underwood that sums of this strange way that history can haunt people and deprive them of a feeling of essentialness with the present. It comes from his essay "Teaching Guam History in Guam High Schools" and it talks about the position of Chamorros from 1898-1941 in relation to the United States.

The Chamorro people were not Americans, did not see themselves as Americans-in-waiting, and probably did not care much about being Americans.
The US relationship during that period was unapologetically colonial. The US didn't have a colonial office as other countries did, but instead just colonized Guam through the US Navy and racist and paternalistic rhetoric/policies. The US Navy preached the glories of its nation in Guam, but Chamorros s…

Legitimate and Illegitimate Violence

Published on Friday, November 16, 2012 by Gaza vs. Israel: Legitimate and Illegitimate Use of Violence in the Western Discourse by Catherine Charrett We hear news that the Israeli state has called up 75,000 reserves and is planning for a ground invasion. I continue to hear loud explosions of air raids surround our home in Saftawi, Gaza. The constant buzzing of the Israeli drone has become part of the backdrop of this weapons battle. I hear news that Hamas shot down two Israeli F-16s. I hear news that an Israeli drone was shot down late last night. I hear the rockets continue to be launched from locations around Gaza and reach the outskirts of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. The shape of these two forms of violence shows how a state is able to launch a war and how a non-state movement is able to resist it. As bombs continue to rain down on Gaza and rockets continue to break the Iron Dome and make it into Israel, a review of dominant mainstream media sites in …

The Blame Game

I don't normally go onto websites to read through comments, but I was intrigued by the recent story about Senator Mana Silva Taijeron's husband going ballistic at Unatalan Middle School. After talking to a teacher that works there, it seemed pretty cut and dried as to what happened. The father of the student was clearly angry and upset at the prospect of his daughter being bullied, but his behavior probably shouldn't be excused as aggressive caring. He behaved in a reckless way towards students at the school and towards staff there, and made assumptions about his daughter being mistreated or not being taken care of when he really had no idea what was going on, and didn't want to listen to anyone explain the situation to him.

Since its an election year I expected the comments to be pretty divided between Democrats and Republicans. Then I remembered that on Guam the difference between Democrat and Republicans doesn't really exist, and is generally just based on who…

Anthem for Doomed Youth

The perfect poem for Veteran's Day.

A perfect reminder about how Veteran's day shouldn't be about unconditionally supporting war and warriors.

It should be a conversation about war, its costs, and whether or not it is worth it.


Anthem for Doomed Youth By Wilfred Owen What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?       Only the monstrous anger of the guns.       Only the stuttering rifles' rapid rattle Can patter out their hasty orisons. No mockeries now for them; no prayers nor bells,       Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs,— The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells;       And bugles calling for them from sad shires.
What candles may be held to speed them all?       Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes Shall shine the holy glimmers of good-byes.       The pallor of girls' brows shall be their pall; Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds, And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.

2012 GPSA Coming Soon!

I'm writing up my 2012 Guam Political Sign Awards.

For those who need a reminder about what this entails, I thought I would post below my awards for the last election, in 2010.

2010 Guam political sign awards Wednesday, 10 Nov 2010 01:22am by Michael Bevacqua | Marianas Variety News Staff The political signs are slowly getting taken down around island and so before we forget that for close to a year our island was covered in a sea of slogans, promises, and smiling faces, Id like to hand out my 2010 Guam Political Sign Awards. These awards are decided by me and me alone, there is no panel of judges who have debated or voted on them.

The categories are neither fair, nor uniform, and they change for each election depending on what signs are out there. These awards are meant to be fun and funny, and rarely serious. These are not meant to attack any candidates, but are instead given to celebrate how invested our island can get into our e…