One of my biggest pet peeves is the “Latina fire” or the “your Latina side came out” bit. Not all Latinas have a temper… or do they? Or is that when people steamroll us, we have a problem? Could be that none of us like to be discriminated against or pushed aside.
Today, I had that feeling when after an Open House at my work; there was free wine and beer. It was expected that we would consume this within the walls of the school (but it’s late and we’re tired) so many people took off or some stuck around for one drink.
Two teachers asked if they could take wine bottles home, they took home three. I wanted to take wine home for my roommates. They always share drinks with me so I wanted to return the favor. I inquire and I get told that I can’t have any… why do two teachers get three bottles and I get none? Is it because I asked politely or is because I am only a teaching assistant? I have no idea, but it sends me in a tizzy. I loudly state that this is discrimination. I am informed I am not allowed because I have consumed a drink within the school, the other teachers didn’t have a drink– they didn’t “have time” so they received three bottles. I have a little tumbler of wine and therefore I am barred for taking a bottle or two home! How logical and fair; not it is not.
My eyes flash, I try to maintain my cool without exploding or yelling. But it’s clear, I’m perturbed and I am offered a few beer bottles in exchange but I decline. The damage is done, I exit with a fellow coworker who is also considered an assistant. She says not to take it personal, it happens often and it’s no use it letting it get to us. That’s exactly it though, it should get it to us because people who deem themselves above us do us wrong and often.
I texted out some frustrations, cooled off a little when I received the “it was interesting to see your fiery Latina side” text. Cue my eye roll. I am not always well composed but my fiery side shouldn’t be attributed to me being Latina. It should be fucking attributed to people being disrespectful and playing favorites. Some people have privileges that I am not afforded. And yes, that pisses me off. I happen to be Latina as well. It’s a coincidence not a cause and effect.