Welcome to WEEK 17 of #ChingonaFest Fridays on Aspiring Mama. If you’re new to the blog, here’s the link to the my Latina Dimelo column that sparked the conversation that’s still going strong. The premise is this: I want to raise my daughter to be a Chingona — on purpose, Las Tias and cultural backlash be damned. If you like the column, I’d love for you to share with your social media circles, leave a comment on the link, or whip up a happy lil’ Letter to the Editor telling them how you feel and send it off to Editor@Latina.com. You may not think that kind of thing makes a difference, but trust me when I tell you that it does.
Have you checked out my past #ChingonaFest ladies? Jesenia the Comedic Actress and Vannessa Vasquez were two of the most recently featured wonder women. Each week, I’m featuring one fabulous Latina who’s moving mountains and raising hell because their stories are worth telling. Twenty questions will be presented to each and 15 will be answered and presented here to you in a Q&A format, like the fancy features in magazines, only with more typos and less airbrushing.
Today’ featured Chingona is too fancy for a last name. She’sMyrah Duque, otherwise known as Coupon Mamacita (or Mamacita! with in italics and with an exclamation point, if she’s feeling sassy)…Duque is a wife, mother, former realtor and PTA President and if you read her about page on her blog, she’s been an “etc.” three times. That last one sounds important.
Duque set 0ut to live frugally after watching a TV show featuring a woman who paid $10 for $200 at a local store with extreme couponing. Turns out Duque has a knack for what she refers to as her “frugal passion-venture”, which, by the way, she happens to share in English AND Spanish. Duque, who has been featured on NBC Latino, Latina.com (a personal favorite.. a*HEM*), among others, is one busy lady.
So let’s get to that interview.
Pauline Campos: Chocolate or vanilla?
Myrah Dulque: Vanilla
PC: I like a woman who gives a straight answer. Favorite book and why:
MD: “Remarkable Courage” by Deb Cheslow. This book’s message transformed my negative “I can’t do that” attitude to a permanent daily POSITIVE attitude.
PC: Come to think of it, you are pretty perky. It’ a wonder I haven’t felt the urge to slap you yet. What? Why the shocked face? Most perky people drive me up a wall but you? I like you. So… let’s talk about your favorite quote. Spill it, sister.
MD: “Fake it till you make it.”
PC: *Nods head* A perennial favorite amongst these parts. Describe yourself in third person.
MD: She overcomes difficult barriers. She is strong. She is influential.
PC: Ohhhh you’re gooood. Let’s play word association. I say CHINGONA and you say…?
MD: STRONG MAMACITA!!!
PC: You sassy minx, you. I think I just fell in love with you, Myrah. Do you dream in color or black and white?
PC: Shut the front door! Me, too! But let’s get serious for a minute. How do you feel about Latinas and how we are represented in the media?
MD: Latinas are strong, open-minded mamacitas! We are underrepresented and misrepresented, however that is rapidly changing with the growth in roles social media, fashion, politics, entertainment, sports.
PC: Quick! One takeaway you want your children to hold onto after they’ve grown and flown the nest…
MD: The sky is the LIMIT! NEVER, Ever, EVER give up!
PC: Okay, perky and…and yet…I still don’t wanna slap you. Maybe it’s the chingona mixed in with the perky that totally make me just wanna ply you with alcohol to see if I’m right, cuz I bet you swear like a sailor when you drink. NO! Don’t say a word. Let me just hold on to the dream for a moment here. Tell me about one childhood memory that has stuck with you…
MD: Relocating to NYC’s Spanish Harlem from Santo Domingo at the age of 6.
13 – Do you think in English, Spanish, or Spanglish? Spanglish
PC: Me, too, Mama. What’s your favorite dish? Why?
MD: Sancocho Dominicano, it’s synonymous of Family gatherings, Family Love.
PC: Do you feel “Latina enough”?
MD: Oh yes! To the bone!
PC: You have the chance to eat dinner and drink wine with one person, living or dead. Who is it, what do you eat, what kind of wine, AND WHY THAT PARTICULAR PERSON?
MD: Hillary Clinton. A nice lavish Sancocho Dominicano with tostones and aguacate! Wine: A tasty Merlot since the sancocho I like has 7 different types of meat in it. Why Hillary? She inspires with her strong, courageous, tough character, leadership skills, handling the Monica Lewisky scandal, who won’t walk away from what is truly important to her.
PC: Do you chew your ice cream? (Or is that just a Me thing?)
MD: Chew ice cream? Say What??
PC: Watch it, sister. I chew ice-cream always. I think it’s a rule. Anyway, one Latina stereotype you despise?
MD: That we are all dark skin. Look at me: Fair Skin, BLonde, blue eyes DOMINICANA. We come in all skin colors
PC: One Latina stereotype you embrace (or is there one?)
MD: EL Baile! We hear music, we are moviendo la colita!
And there ya have it. To nominate a Latina for a future #ChingonaFest Friday feature, email me at email@example.com or tweet me with the hashtag #ChingonaFest. And don’t forget to check out my latest Dimelo Advice column on Latina Magazine. This week’s reader is 20 and dating a 45-year-old and SUPRISE….mami is NOT happy. Check out my response and let me know what you think! Also, be sure to send me your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The sun’ll come out tomorrow, y’all..
Who likes Pretty Pictures? I’m #MexicaninMaine on Etsy and have more art available on Society6. And because it’s actually relevant, check out my Zazzle and Etsy shops for Sassy #ChingonaFest gear! More designs and products coming soon!
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