I’ve always had my obsessions. If I discover a new song and like it, I’ll listen to it 1,463,948 times or until it makes me ill. New artist? I’ll read every page written online and watch every interview ever filmed.
All that to say, I came across this series on YouTube a few Sundays ago, called “Nadie Nos Ha Dado Vela en Este Entierro.” I haven’t thought of the perfect English equivalent yet, but the idea is that of not having any business in the matter. No dog in the fight…nothing at stake. Something along those lines.
The series features racialized people and/or immigrants in Spain talking about their views on identify. I sat and watched all 10 videos — including the recap. (New videos have been posted since my initial binge, and yes, I watched those too.)
Identity is one of those topics that gets me going. I’m an African Caribbean-Canadian living in Colombia. I feel like I have a lifetime of stories to tell.
“Where are you from?”
That’s The Big Question. I get it here because of my accent, but I also got it in Canada, where I was born and raised. I’ve also asked it.
My answer would depend on who was asking, and how I felt about it in the moment. If I was annoyed, I’d repeat, “Canada. Yep, I was born here” forcing them to leave with an unsatisfactory answer or, ask what they really wanted to know: “Where are you REALLY from?” or, “Where are your parents from?”
All of this to say, I can relate to the folks in the series and I’m intrigued by their stories of life in Spain.
I’ll post one of the videos below, and you can follow it to the rest on YouTube. The audio is in Spanish and you can use the auto-translate function if you don’t speak or read Spanish (it isn’t perfect, but it’ll do).