I have a different design now for my online comic, "The Politics of Fat." Until recently, I've spent most years feeling ambivalent about my Hispanic status. In places where there are large Hispanic populations, three things tend to give me away: my brown hair and eyes, and/or my pink cheeks. However, in places I've been where there are significantly less Hispanics, I'm often mistaken for white. I took a graduate class at Hood College in Summer 2007 from which I was ultimately withdrawn from (and later received a refund for), and where I made the (public) mistake of sharing that I wasn't white. A white student immediately responded by insisting, "You must be white because you look white." By the next class, there was a literal divide between the rows, with all of the white students sitting on the left side of the room and me on the right. For a long time, I used to say that growing up in Houston, TX made me openly tolerant of people from all cultures and backgrounds - and I still am; but I could never accept being Hispanic because of all the negative associations attached to it. There were also several instances when I felt weirded out by people who made the effort to point out my physical differences or who tried to insist that I should be accepting of what I was; but I knew my mom's experiences (my dead dad's white), so I was aware of racism and prejudice if more on an intellectual level. That is, until I experienced racism firsthand from my first landlord in Frederick, MD. However, I've always wanted to be seen on my own terms; that is, as an individual person with a mind and a soul who simply wants to learn about the world. It's also true that I never grew up within an Hispanic culture, and that a lot of the people I interact(ed) with were/are white. A lot of who I am is borne out of this conflict of living between two worlds, and I've never been good enough in either world: one for not having the advantages associated with it, though not for a complete lack of them; the other for never being a part of it, which isn't likely to change. So this is me, and what I've been experiencing recently is racial consciousness. This is a process, and I'm here showing you how I'm confronting myself. VR, 11/23/07. I am returning to this before the Spring 2009 semester starts, but I had some images from the my original comics that I felt were appropriate here. (Unfortunately, you do have to scroll down on the menu to the left or click "next >>" below to see the newer uploads.) VR, 12/19/08.