Thursday, October 29, 2009


Pop quiz:

Who am I?

My wife calls me "gordito" even though I lost 15 lbs. and two sizes cycling like a madman over the summer. My little dog is named Pepe, but I can never remember what that is short for (Francisco? José? Pedro?). I can properlly use and pronounce at least three different versions of the all-important word Coño! And I can even cook up a mean plate of picadillo santiaguero - better than mi mujer cubana.


Soy Yuma - un americano... aplatanado.

The idea of a blog by an Americano entitled El Yuma is a bit bizarre and perhaps too self-referential, I admit. But they always say, "Start where you are. Write what you know." So here goes!

I was born and raised in the famed Redneck Riviera, right on the southern edge of the Bible Belt, in Pensacola, Florida (USA, aka, "La Yuma"). Now, when I tell my Latino friends that, they think they have figured me out and pause before exclaiming, "Ay, por eso - eres de La Florida." And they say the name of my home state, La Florida, as if it were a long lost cousin returned home after a war. Nothing like we say it north of say Ybor City - "Fler-da."

What they don't know is that in that part of La Florida, at least back in the 70's when I came of age along with the Brady Bunch, the only Hispano-parlantes were an exiled Cuban who taught Spanish at my Catholic high school and a handfull of Mexican families who appeared in the campo of South Alabama early each summer to harvest the crops for a run of six weeks before vanishing back to the Southwest for another year.

So, how did I become so aplatanado - you may ask. (Well you may first ask what the #&%@ is aplatanado anyway? - short answer, "turning into a banana"; long answer, "watch me dance"). Well, it's a long story - too long for my already too long inaugural blog post. But, as the blog's name and theme is El Yuma, I will keep telling this story, my story, as I go - so stay tuned (or a guess I sould say "stay connected").

I have a feeling there are going to be many more of us happily "bananafied" Americanos as we move forward into this brave new Obama century (o se podría decir "siglosotomayor!"). Someone's gotta teach the rest of the gringos, er, Yumas, how to dance and roll their R's - right?


  1. Mr Yuma Aplatanado... love your sense of humor... best wishes... may you blog long and prosper... (any chance for that picadillo recipe?)

  2. Jajajaajjaja... Empingao!!! Keep going dude; great writing.

  3. Oye! Soy Aplatando tambien - pero de Canada eh?
    Cuando vivi en La Habana (como 5 anos, duro) me dieron la jente tambien ese apodo. No te ofendes, es un termino de carinyo (sorry, no tengo teclas de acentos en mi teclado). Anyway, los Cubanos son capazes de inventar palabras chevres pa' qualquier cosa - en english la palabra que es mas aparecido es la palabra: acclimatized (es como decir "now you are one of us gordito, you have been asimilated). Chao

  4. Made it all the way through the complete history of your blogging, very interesting.