La Reina Comemierda

So someone sends me an email with a link to some supposedly heralded “Cuban-American’ writer’s blog post where she is basically ripping the Miami herald to shreds because the paper refuses to give her any press about her upcoming book. Yawn. Ho hum. Who cares. The last thing I want to read is some “artiste” whining about the unfairness of life and bitching and moaning about this person or that person and how that person hates him or her and all that. I havent read anything like that since we passed notes in junior high school.

But the “writer’ made a few comments that kinda stuck with me. First, she calls herself a liberal “Cuban-American” which is fine and dandy. Then she takes a jab at us intolerent, and dare I say, intransigent Miami “Cubanos.” Par for the course, I suppose. If I had a dime for every time I’ve heard that Id be blogging from a penthouse on South Beach.


But she also wrote that she is a Cuban-American, AND I QUOTE:

who thinks Castro is a tyrant just like W,

Now, I think that’s quite possibly the stupidest thing Ive ever read and I decided to respond simply to that one particular statement as follows:

who thinks Castro is a tyrant just like W,

Maybe it’s just inane comments like that one that relegate your work –
however great you say it is – to the bottom of the heap.

I mean, if youre going to make such a scurrilous statement, the least you
can do is quantify it with actual data for us Miami Mafia plebian
Cuban-Americans.

how is it, excactly, that Bush is as much of a tyrant as castro?

we’re all waiting.

Comment moderation is on at her blog, so I figured she wouldnt even publish it. In all honesty, I was just hoping to get the message across to her privately.

But that was not to be folks. Not to be at all.

Turns out this writer not only published my comment, but did so in her blog post. Not only that, perhaps after having read the complete inanity of that ridiculous comment, removed the statement, AND THEN EDITED MY COMMENT TO REFLECT SAID CHANGE! And to add insult to injury, she took my picture which ran in the Herald and she stated – I swear I am not making this up! – the following:

I actually get hate mail from people like Val Prieto of babalublog because I am not obsessed with Cuba and Castro like she is. Here’s a nice sample of what she says to me:

Maybe it’s just inane comments like that one (comparing Bush to Castro) that relegate your work – however great you say it is – to the bottom of the heap.

I mean, if youre going to make such a scurrilous statement, the least you can do is quantify it with actual data for us Miami Mafia plebian CUban-Americans.

how is it, excactly, that Bush is as muchof a tyrant as castro?

we’re all waiting.

Sigh. Val? May I suggest a hobby? I mean, other than posting drawings of Che Guevara with a bullet in his head on your blog? Cooking? Mall-walking? Something. Anything. You need interests, sweetie. The world is actually bigger than Cuba and South Florida. Hard to believe, I know, but not everyone…cares about the stuff you lost in 1959. Or 1968. Or whenever. Yes, it’s sad. But most people in the world just…don’t care.

Oh! Oops. I just googled Val Prieto for a photo. She’s a…he! A he who looks like he might be named Bubba. Sorry, Val. Just assumed. Here’s a photo of Val, in case he shows up with an Uzi at my reading, to mow me down for disliking both Castro AND Bush.

Val? One more thing. I didn’t mean anything by the “sweetie,” uh, now that I know you’re a guy and all.

One more thing. The Miami Herald? They ran a profile of Val Prieto ON THE FRONT PAGE.

But can’t find a soul in the newsroom to cover a NY Times bestselling author named one of the 25 most influential Hisapnics in America by Time magazine, and interviewed by Anderson Cooper TWICE this past week on immigration.

Yeah, they’re all ABOUT free press at the Miami Herald.

Free press for Val Prieto.

In the profile of Val, it is stated that he’s a popular Cuban American blogger because his site gets about 1000 hits a day. I get between six and ten times that many a day RIGHT HERE. They also brag that he gets hits from other countries. In the past day I’ve had hits from dozens of nations.

I…I…I..I just dont know what to say. Well, that’s not really true. I did know what to say. here was my response in her comments:

Ordinarily I wouldnt even respond to a person so self involved that they dedicate a whole post to complaining about a local newspaper not mentioning their work. Smacks of arrogance among other things.

I see you took lots of time to defame me in your response, yet you avoided answering my question. Not only that, you edited your original post to read differently.(not to worry, however, I have a screencap!) if youre going to make a statement equating Bush and castro both as tyrants, have at least a modicum of ethics and fortitude to back it up.

As for your getting more traffic. I dont really care. See, it’s not about numbers for me. It’s not about me for me. It’s about getting a message across to counter all the ill-informed and myopic ones such as yours. It’s also about TRANSPARENCY. My Sitemeter, unlike yours, is open for all to see. I notice, as well, that at the time of this post, you have a whole 162K visits. Ive just a tad more than that.

Perhaps the herald ran a piece on me on their front page because Im not all about me, me, me as this post of yours so clearly and definitely illustrates. Call what I do fighting for a cause, call it an obsession, call it whatever you wish. At the least Im not out there pretending to be something Im not and am working to help someone other than myself.

So i suggest you think about quitting your whining. Te queda feo eso. The ugliest characteristic a woman can posses is rancor, and this post and your attack on me personally, not to mention all the others, reeks of it.

Good luck at Books and Books, and I truly hope no one asks you any serious questions about politics or ideologies or what not. Lest your true ignorance shine.

Ill leave you with a Cubanism as a suggestion:

No te tires que no das pie.

BTW, Ive taken the liberty of copying this comment of mine and screencapping it, just in case you choose to edit it, or dare I say, not have the wherewithall to post it.

And of course, just like the previous “response” to my comment, we have the following smoke and mirrors statement:

Did you get that, everyone? A woman shouldn’t be rancorous. It makes her ugly.

And we all know the most important thing a woman should be is…pretty.

Not, like, smart. Or independent. Or writing about smart, independent women.

Pretty. That’s all you need to know about Val Prieto, my friends.

I swear, I cannot stop laughing. Any sane human being that reads her post – whether the final version or the EDITED one – will see just how incredibly self-centered and shallow the writer is. Proof’s in the pudding right there ON HER OWN BLOG.

Here’s a message for La Queen Sucia:

You can be a smart, witty, intelligent, didactic, vivacious, brilliant, independent woman without being vain, rancorous, self-centered, unethical, deceptive and egotistical. The former make you beautiful, the latter make you, well, you.

Update: I was going to leave this post alone, but, this is just classic:

Raven said…
Mi Reina,

I’ve got your back. Autograph my wife’s copy of your first book for me and buy me a maple-pecan scone at Flying Star con cafe y leche and I’ll happily hop Southwest to Miami and ensure Val maintains a safe distance from your reading. It’d be an honor.

3:37 PM

Que peste a guapoooo! Im a shiverin’ in my chancletas!

Caballeros, miren que hay gente comemierdas en este mundo.

59 thoughts on “La Reina Comemierda”

  1. Her dad is a Cuban American leftist professor who has gone to Cuba and her mom is an Irish American from a wealthy family I think. This is surprising because although she is liberal I thought that she was still anti Castro – you don’t have to be a right wing conservative to be anti Castro. Her books are trashy, but she is popular.

  2. Wow. A professional take-down if I ever read one. I hate it when comments and/or posts are edited other than for spelling or grammar. It just smacks of a lack of ethics and cojones to face the music. It’s a shame, really, how a good-looking Cuban woman like this can be so ugly on the inside.

  3. I would hate to see what happens if they don’t get “Raven”‘s maple-pecan scone and “cafe y leche” order right.

  4. mandingo,

    and I quote:

    …I know, but not everyone…cares about the stuff you lost in 1959. Or 1968. Or whenever. Yes, it’s sad. But most people in the world just…don’t care.

    She has a pretty big podium if she’s all that she makes herself out to be. maybe it’s just her that doesnt care about Cuba.

  5. The sad thing is that there are a lot of young well to, or yuppie, or IVY educated, or urban, NY Times reading Cuban Americans who are “resentidos” or are somehow ashamed of having parents who are anti Castro. They are ashamed or embrassed of many things around their “Anglo” pals. Also a lot of these young successful Cuban Americans also have to play the game of putting down “rabid right wing Miami Cubans” in order to get ahead in a publishing and media world that is 99.9% leftist. Again, this strikes me odd about this gurl because I can swear she has said anti Castro things in the past. She is kinda cute for a big girl though – too bad she is of that other political stripe. Or she just might be having a bad pms hair day because the Herald dissed her. They tell me she is married to a Mexican dude.

  6. not to mention the “stuff you lost” bullshit.

    Typical leftist drivel, man. My dad was a welder. Blue collar. What he lost in Cuba was his FREEDOM.

  7. All you need to see is the silly statement up at the top of her blog:

    “Online diary for bestselling American author Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez, named one of the nation’s 25 most influential Hispanics by Time magazine”

    She obviously has to tell her readers she’s important because she’s not getting the recognition she thinks she deserves. You, Mr. Miami Herald cover boy, are getting that recognition, and it bothers her. Especially because you’re a “Miami mafioso” and you couldn’t possibly be as smart and enlightened as her obviously more educated liberal self. So she picked a fight to gain some of your attention.

    If I were you I’d ignore her. You’re only giving her publicity by responding to her nonsense. Don’t let it get to you.

  8. Val, you sure have balls standing up to a NEW YORK TIMES BEST-SELLING AUTHOR and 25 MOST INFLUENTIAL HISPANICS IN AMERICA BY TIME MAGAZINE!

    I’ll be frank with you: I would have crawled under my bed immediately, lest she should put me to shame me with her sheer literary prowess and argumentative virtuosity or something.

    It’s not like you or I can claim to be a/the (dirty?) queen of “chica lit”, or to have authored such gripping, monumental tours de force as “Make Him Look Good (Hardcover)” or “Playing with Boys: A Novel (Hardcover)”–both of which I’m certain will withstand the test of time as well as any Odyssey or Hamlet or Don Quijote.

  9. One last comment – she calls her blog “la Queen Sucia” “The Dirty Queen”. Maybe her name says it all – La Queen Sucia. Sounds like a female gang leader graffitii artist break dancer from Spanish Harlem in the 1980s – you know with a satin jacket with those tacky gothic lettering.

    What can you expect from someone who calls herself “La Queen Sucia”?

  10. Mandingo is absolutely right. I go to an Ivy League school (soon to graduate), and I know at least three Cuban Americans (2 from MIA, 1 from NJ) who play the self-hate game. It’s fashionable, I suppose, to say that you’re Cuban American, but not like THOSE ones in Miami, with their outdated opinions and monolithic convictions and their right-wing this-and-that. This makes you appear more complex and gets you “Latino cred” and “cred” in general. It’s sad, really. Hell, it’s repugnant.

  11. And another thing:

    No Cuban American in their right mind would have a “maple-pecan scone and “cafe y leche”

    It’s just not natural and goes against all the laws that Western civ. stands for.

    BTW -Croquettas and pastelitos de guava are what normal people have with cafe con leche – dontcha know.

  12. Here’s a message to the world: “FUCK LATINO CRED.” My principles are more important. Get the message, Queenie? You have none.

  13. Craig,

    I know. But how could I resist not highlighting a NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR POSTING MY PICTURE ON HER BLOG AND CALLING ME “BUBBA?”

    Unblievably erudite, dont you think? For a bestselling author and all.

  14. Mandingo, the “maple-pecan scone and cafe [con] leche” guy sounds like a graduate of liberal sensitivity training. Not only is it unnatural for a Cuban to have such an abomination of a combination, it sounds downright awful…

  15. Calling someone “Bubba” is the left’s refuge when their intellect, such as it is, cannot come up with a better comeback. That’s why I love it that they call the ex-President who shall remain nameless “Bubba” — the name fits so perfectly…

  16. This may seem self-evident, but being “vain, rancorous, self-centered, unethical, deceptive and egotistical” make you ugly no matter what your gender. Women don’t get a free pass because they’re women.

    All that talk of being “pretty.” Does she realize that she reads as parody?

    Good show, Val.

  17. From an anonymous source, I hear this: “Alisa is the Cuban Cynthia McKinney.” That is all.

  18. “In the profile of Val, it is stated that he’s a popular Cuban American blogger because his site gets about 1000 hits a day. I get between six and ten times that many a day RIGHT HERE.”

    Here you can see how this woman is lying. According to Alexa, her web site ranks as number 915,824 while Babalu is number 330,791.
    therealcuba.com gets about 2,000 visitors a day and is number 138,089.
    If she really was getting an average of between 6 and 10,000 visitors a day, she would be way ahead of both of us.

  19. So sad…I had heard good reviews about her work from my sister’s roommate but after this lack of class and respect towards a fellow writer (not to mention Cuban) I’ll turn away if I ever come across her books as I’m looking through the clearance section at Walmart!
    And just so you know, Alisa, not all Cubans and Cuban-Americans here in Miami are All Cuba, All the time, but we know where we come from, and what we stand for, something you obviously have no clue about.

  20. I left Alisa a note over at her blog. We’ll see if she posts it.

    Hell, her next post will probably be on the Neanderthal Miami Cubans who are rushing to Val’s defense.

  21. who thinks Castro is a tyrant just like W,

    WTF????? ROFLMAO!!!!!!

    IF ANYTHING this is the sign of an individual who DOES NOT think. Period.

  22. Val,
    Hi. Alisa has a valid reason for being upset.
    Not to take away from your blog and your efforts to share and educate the public about your Cuban stories but Alisa was a former award-winning features writer at The Boston Globe and The LA Times. Her novels have sold more than 350,000 copies worldwide. Time mag named her one of the most influential Hispanics in the US this year. And her newest novel is set in Miami. It’s a tribute to the people there, from all Hispanic backgrounds. So you can see why she would be a little upset that The Herald is denying her coverage when her story is a natural for the paper and its subscribers. I’m happy that the Herald chronicled your blog and decided to splash it on the front page (would never happen at another major newspaper) but you have to admit, there is an inequity when they won’t cover the release of her book when it’s all about Miami. Something is not “write” with that. I’m not writing this to attack you. My goal here is to at least shed some light on why she, as a well-known published author, would be so upset. Wouldn’t you be if you couldn’t get word out about your book to your Miami readers through the biggest regional paper because a features writer there was treated the way she treats the subjects she covers?

  23. Yonito: Are you aware that a significant Miami playhouse was closing? It had great significance as a high cultural watermark in Miami’s history. Please scroll down and read Lucie Arnaz’s email to Val about this matter that the Herald needed to cover.

    The author you describe is a pulp fiction writer who writes trivial work targetted at certain kinds of young women. It’s not that important. For her to demand an interview, at the time and place and venue and even reporter of her regal choosing is not always possible when other things are happening in the city. Newspapers have to balance priorities. Your person’s not that impressive a writer, she is mainly a product of marketing and public relations efforts, and there’s no reason for a large city newspaper to adhere to her publicist’s schedule, on demand, at the snap of her fingers. Newspapers MUST get the real news out first, then they can do PR for publicity-hungry writers who don’t have the wherewithal to sell books without it, if they have time and inclination. It would help if your favored writer were not so venomous and angry at the publications she seeks favorable reviews from all the time.

  24. Ditto what Mora said. I was about to say that nobody is ENTITLED to coverage and think so is so arrogant that it defies description. Perhaps Ms. Valdez should learn that catch more flies with honey than vinnegar. Fuck her. It’s the bullshit rhetoric like calling Bush a Nazi or a tyrant that makes the liberals in our country a joke.

  25. Oh, and Yonito? A little correction for you for your ASSUMPTION (lesson: never assume!) that Val’s work would NEVER make the pages of any other newspaper other than the Miami Herald.

    You’re wrong. Repeat: W-R-O-N-G.

    Val’s profile was reprinted in USA Today, the highest circulation newspaper in the United States, and then syndicated with Knight-Ridder News Services, appearing in many more newspapers around the country. It was deemed that mainstream.

    So next time you assume that someone from Miami cannot POSSIBLY be of any interest to anyone else in America, you need to think again. Val, as he is, appeals to people all over the United States for what he is.

    Time for you to get out of your marketing box.

  26. Here’s the most laughable thing about ms. sucia. She’s angry because the Herald is not showing any respect for the author of the number 2 book on Amazon’s listing of Hispanic Women’s Fiction. Well to me that sounds like being the second tallest midget in the cast of Willy Wonka. I mean really if you look at the number 1 book in that list it’s a 12 year old paperback called When I Was Puerto Rican by Esmeralda Santiago. So ms. sucia you are the second smartest retard on the short bus. Great going, now get a life.

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/search-handle-url/ref=dp_srsubj_entry/103-5637713-3200653?%5Fencoding=UTF8&index=books&field-keywords=Hispanic%20American%20women

  27. It’s pretty low for someone who considers herself more important as news than the shutdown of the storied Cocoanut Grove playhouse – the 3000 rank is relatively new and most of her rankings have been in the 60,000 range in the past.

    She’s only written two books after her flameout exit from the LA Times ensured she’d never work in major-league journalism again as a daily writer. At that time, she screamed that her liberal LA Times editors were ‘genocidal’ racists and did the same thing she’s doing now: putting down other writers because, by her own claim, she’s so much better than any of them. I’ve never seen another writer as self-centered as this and she does this all the time. Her second novel didn’t match her first in volume and never climbed high enough to make the NYT bestseller list. Her first one had heavy publicity because of her famous reputation for ranting like cynthia mckinney yet only reached 20-something in the ranks. It’s not what i’d call a star performance. Take a look at her book signing schedule – all B- and C-grade bookstores in downmarket areas, quite a step down from the more visible ones her publicist was able to land for her earlier.

    Have you read what Anderson Cooper wrote about her on his blog? He wasn’t impressed with her McKinneyesque ‘logic’ and has probably concluded that she’s mostly the product of publicists’ hype designed to sell fourth-rate novels only suckers would waste time reading.

  28. Wow….what an increible blowhard.

    I just went over to her blog and read some of her posts; she thinks she is God’s gift to publishing. To me it just screams desperation.

    If you are going to make asinine comments comparing George Bush to castro and then not expect people to respond to it is crazy.

    It’s the like the kid in school who picks a fight, but once it starts runs away and complains about it.

    And the calling you Bubba thing was just dumb.

    She wrote a book that got lucky and hit, that’s it. The fact that all of us are even talking about her is probably giving her a lot of joy. I suggest we just move on and let her continue to bash away.

  29. I think that “La Queen Sucia” as she calls herself may be trying to generate publicity for her third “Latina Chick Lit” novela. Many people who may not know her, but who read Babalublog NOW know her thanks to this latest totally-out-of-proportion, hissy fit, ditto for her outburst in Anderson Cooper which led to an opinion piece in the Washington Post. Coincidence that all of this happening just as her third novel is coming out? Maybe, maybe not?

    That much said, although she is getting plenty of exposure with these fabricated controversies, she is, also, alienating her natural reading audience, Cuban Americans, whom she trashes in her blog. Not a very smart move, but then again, perhaps she is more interested in other Hispanics than in Cubans??? They do outnumber us after all, and, writers, academians and sundry other sorts who distance themselves from those awful “repellant” “right winged” “Castro-obsessed” Cuban Americans are often rewarded in today’s politically correct driven cultural environment! Remember how Ramon Cernuda, Magda Montiel-Davis and Eloy Gutierrez Menoyo got national platforms in major newspapers like the New York Times when they started trashing Cuban Americans?

    A little background on Alisa Rodriguez Valdes, she is the daughter of a pro-Castro Cuban American professor who trashes his own people. As the saying goes, “little green apples don’t fall far from the tree.”

    In any case, if anyone wants to read literature by a really talented Cuban American woman writer, I suggest, Daina Chaviano. She is outstanding and like all really talented individuals, modest.

  30. Mandingo, actually the proper accompaniment to Cafe con leche is heavily buttered cuban toast. Then, you must dip the buttered cuban toast into the cafe con leche. There’s no substitute, period. Whether for breakfast, mid afternoon snack, or late night snack.

  31. I checked “Dirty Queen”‘s site. Ms. Valdes reminds me of someone who introduces herself with the premise of all her “achievements” and stances so she can be taken seriously … she’s using the “race/ethnicity” card to create division … again … “It’s “us” against “them” … yet she wants to portray this “intellectual” persona, but the language and expressions she uses are a direct contrast to this.
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

    “The creative artist seems to be almost the only kind of man that you could never meet on neutral ground. You can only meet him as an artist. He sees nothing objectively because his own EGO is always in the foreground of every picture.”~ R. Chandler

    🙂 Melek

  32. Do you mean to tell us you’re NOT blogging from a penthouse on South Beach? I thought all of you intransigent Miami mafia types were rich!

  33. AM Mora y Leon,
    Thank you for your comments. All I’m saying is that there is something fishy and suspect when one the 25 writers at The Herald’s Living/Arts section or a freelance writer cannot be dispatched to write a book review or cover Alisa’s new novel – about Miami, again – because they all have to cover the potential closing of the playhouse. (The Herald’s coverage of the Elian Gonzalez seizure had less reporters for that story. I doubt the playhouse ranks up there in news caliber.) It would only take 2 at the most to cover the playhouse. Val’s story at the most was a Neighbors story, not a front page contender. The Herald is trying to do whatever it can to appear cool and in-the-know so anything blogging related is marching to the front of the sections, even though they wouldn’t be there in any other newspaper/publication outside Miami.
    Like I said, I’m not taking away from Val’s story It’s great he is doing what he’s doing but you have to admit, there is a journalistic inequity with the local paper looks the otherway to cover a well-known author in Hispanic fiction whose book is about Miami.

  34. Alisa’s inability to make moral distinctions between castro and George Bush is a phenomenon of Tom Wolfe once described in a 1976 essay in the book ‘Mauve Gloves and Madmen, Clutter and Vine.’

    He wrote about idiots who were always seeing the dark night of fascism descending on America, but curiously, landing only in Europe. He had nothing but contempt for such people.

    In ‘The Intelligent Co-Ed’s Guide To America,’ in the 3rd section called S-s-s-s-s-s-ssss, Wolfe described the 1960s hysteria of fashionable leftists in U.S. universities screaming about ‘fascism’ and tyranny and dictatorship taking over America because they didn’t like the president, and how utterly ridiculous their imagined persecutions were. Wolfe was making fun of the ignoramuses.

    Wolfe wrote:

    “The next thing I knew, the discussion was onto the subject of fascism in America. Everyone was talking about police repression and anxiety and paranoia as good folks waited for the knock on the door at midnight and the descent of the knout on the nape of the neck. I couldn’t make any sense out of it. I had just made a tour of the country to write a series called ‘The New Life Out There’ for New York magazine. This was the mid-60s. The post World-War II boom had by now pumped money into every level of the population on a scale unparalleled in history. Not only that, folks were running wilder and freer than any people in history,” Wolfe wrote.

    “Suddenly I heard myself blurting out over the microphone, ‘My God what are you talking about? We’re in the middle of a … Happiness Explosion!” wrote Wolfe.

    “I disappeared in a sea of rude sounds,” he said, describing the leftist audience, who desperately wanted to hear that America was the same as an oppressive totalitarian dictatorship.

    Then Wolfe wrote:

    “Support came from a quarter I hadn’t counted on. It was (Gunter) Grass, speaking in English. ‘For the past half hour, I have my eyes fixed on the doors here,’ he said. ‘You talk about fascism and police repression. In Germany when I was a student, they come through those doors long ago. Here they must be very slow.’ Grass was enjoying himself for the first time all evening. He was not simply saying ‘You really don’t have so much to worry about.’ He was indulging his sense of the absurd. He was saying, ‘You American intellectuals-you so desperately want to feel beseiged and persecuted!'”

    Wolfe’s essay only gets funnier. Alisa is one of these people who desperately wants to feel beseiged, wants to equivocate Bush with castro. She can’t see any difference because she is desperate for them to be the same. She would rather be persecuted than ignored.

    Real Cubans are very different. They know very well what real beseigement, real tyranny is, and it has nothing to do with some ephemeral elected politician like Bush.

    Alisa is the epitome of the fools Wolfe snickered so hard about in his 1976 essay.

  35. Let’s see: This self-absorbed babe tiene tremendo berrinche because the Herald won’t give her the time of day, at the same time that she’s documenting in her blog how the Herald is LOSING circulation ….. (a la Boston Globe/NYT/ and all the rest of them rags).

    Er … something wrong with this picture???

    Maybe residual tax time distress drives her wild, ’cause it doesn’t compute.

    Val, I wouldn’t waste much more time con la trasnochada. Don’t give her the press she wants. All you need to know is that she proudly hails from NM, which according to many NM natives, has become the new mecca for cereal liberals (fruits, nuts and flakes).

    “Sucia” is quite approriate, by the way – she gets a pass for honesty on that one.

  36. Yonito: It’s not about numbers of writers – and the Miami Herald doesn’t have 25 arts writers at anyone’s disposal. It’s about space. The writers the Herald has had other stories to cover, and were in the middle of those stories. They couldn’t just drop everything for some publicist on demand just because some writer wanted it. Not only that, the publicist only called a couple people. Do you know how many book writers are really out there? They all want the same thing from the Miami Herald.

    There is another problem: Contrary to the simple stereotypes that New York marketing people have:(part-Cuban, Alisa must be a natural for Miami), Alisa isn’t very closely connected to the Miami-Cuban community. It doesn’t mean she’s a nobody, it just means she’s connected to other places. The fact that she went after a very popular blogger in Miami over politics, launching a tirade against the wholea Miami Cuban community itself over one question about her equating Bush with Castro was curiously imprudent.

    But she seems to know very little about the Miami Cuban community. Her big fan was a pecan scone-eating “cafe y lecho” (sic) guy. Nothing wrong with it, just not a Miami Cuban.

    But more significantly, she actually believed that ‘Val’ was a woman’s name, not knowing that Val, short for Valentin, is an EXTREMELY popular Miami-Cuban name. I know three Cuban Vals and none are women. Her first thought was a diminutive of ‘Valerie’ a middle-market U.S. female name that peaked during the 1960s.

    She also propagated some very old stereotypes about Miami-Cubans: one was that they are obsessed with possessions lost during the 1959 expropriations of private property by the murderous fidel castro regime.

    If you read this blog and other Miami Cuban blogs, you will learn that most of the Miami Cubans are NOT obsessed with retaking their lost property, they are CONCERNED ABOUT THE LOSS OF FREEDOM on castro’s island prison. They don’t have a crass obsession about money or property, they have a very real compassion about what tyranny does to a person’s soul and freedom and natural rights. Only a profoundly materialistic person would sarcastically slam the Miami Cubans as being obsessed with regaining lost property. It’s an old canard that actually comes from castro himself that he’s been dishing out since the 1960s. Miami Cubans are very aware of that old canard, they’ve heard it thousands of times from Havana, so it was interesting that this was the first thing out of Alisa’s mouth in her tirade against Miami Cubans. I wonder who told her that.

    It wasn’t someone who’s Miami-Cuban. She hurls out another stereotype at Miami Cubans, when she said that Val would likely come at her with an Uzi. It’s the same kind of libel that that self-admitted castro-admirer (and this is not a mainstream view anywhere in the US) Gary Moran spread when he released a false biased study claiming that Miami Cubans were so crazy and intransigent that castro’s Cuban Five SPIES couldn’t possibly get a fair trial if there were so much as even a venue of a trial in Miami. They were too murderous and violent. It was a total lie and exposed as such by … The Miami Herald. Miami Cubans well about this old canard, too. Once again, its orgin was fidel castro.

    In light of this disconnect from the community, both because she belongs to some other community and because she harbors views that are old canards originating from castro, I can see why the Herald had higher priorities than writing the kind of story about her that her publicist wanted.

    It’s not just her hostility and ignorance about the Miami Cubans. She also doesn’t like the Herald anyway, due to her openly publicized professional feuds. I fail to see why should the Herald accomodate her in her effort to hawk books.

  37. One other thing, Yonito: You insist that Val’s profile was “at most” a neighbors story.

    The Herald editors thought differently. Who makes the decisions about that, you, or the Herald? Who made the decision at USA Today? Who made the same decision at hundreds of smaller papers that run Knight Ridder stories? How come they all thought it was more than a ‘neighbors’ piece? How come?

    You may THINK you know more than editors about what is news, but do you really? If you do, why aren’t you the editor?

  38. I hate to waste time and effort on this except to say that we are wasting time and effort on this! Seriously, Val, I feel for you when you get hit by all these people who have agendas (insignificant agendas at that!) other than the focus of your blog. It’s hard not to fight back. Yes, I know how proud you are of your intransigence. It is an admirable badge of honor in my view as well. Opposition seems to be escalating, and perhaps this is a good sign of your growing influence. I may be wrong on this, but as attacks continue to mount, you run the risk of diluting your efforts if you respond to all of them. Pick good fights like you do most of the time, and leave the “Queen Sucias” to their petty niche rantings and ravings.

  39. A.M. Mora y Leon,
    You raised some interesting points.
    I am a Miami Cuban so I am in touch with the pulse of the community, having been born and reared there.
    I see what you’re saying about Alisa and her points and you’re right, she’s not connected to the Cuban community in Miami.
    My issue was The Herald ignoring coverage of her book. That’s all.
    Let’s agree to disagree which is the beauty and the spirit of blogging, the exchange of ideas.

    peace
    Yonito

  40. On a lighter note . . . I could imagine Ms. Valdes in one of those commercials … the one where someone is “pretending” to be what they are not and at the end … it states … “but I stayed at a Holiday Inn … :))

  41. Yesterday as I read her post there was something that bothered me, and it was the fact that she says:

    Hard to believe, I know, but not everyone…cares about the stuff you lost in 1959. Or 1968. Or whenever. Yes, it’s sad. But most people in the world just…don’t care.

    It didn’t bother we because of what Mora mentions above; that I’m used to. It bothered me b/c it was disregarding one very monumental thing – that some Cubans lost PEOPLE – hardly stuff – husbands, fathers, mothers, sons, etc, because Fidelito and Friend saw them as the enemy. PEOPLE are NOT stuff, and I do believe its a reason big enough for some Cubans to hate Fidelito and Friends for a lifetime.

    Look at all the Chileans and Argentinians who lost family members under Pinochet or Videla, they still passionately hate the guy.

    In any case, I wrote a comment regarding that, and asking her to have some more consideration when she makes such a blanket statement like that; to have more regard for those who lost PEOPLE. Property and freedom we regained, PEOPLE we didn’t.

    Needless to say my comment was 100% not published. CENSHORSHIP. That’s what that is. She knew she had done wrong, and rather than admit it, she CENSORS.

  42. Ventanita,

    Just as I suspected, Alisa didn’t publish my comment either. She DID publish one from a Rafael Serra who seems to know a lot about Babalu and some of its contributing writers.

    People like Alisa are NEO-LIBERALS. They wouldn’t know how to act in the true meaning of liberalism if it came up and slapped them in the face.

  43. Yes I saw that too. Neo-Liberal? That would be a compliment. I don’t think that high of her. She is self centered and obviously acomplejada about her cuban heritage.

  44. I think neo-liberal is exactly what those people would resent the most…not being who they think they are. Hypocrites. That’s what I mean.

  45. Soy un Cubano-Americano living in Madison, WI, the so-called bastion of “liberalism” in the Midwest. This means I hear stupid comments ALL the time. But this “chic lit” tipa takes the cake.

    She has to be the most self-absorbed snob I have encountered in a long time (and I teach high school too). Attention-whore sounds more like it.

    Personally, I don’t think W is the best or brightest president in U.S. history. Nor do most of my students. But when I ask them to compare him to Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, Mao and Castro, they laugh at my question because many think it should not even be asked. Somebody must have slipped some pretty strong hallucinogens into Alisa’s granola bar to have her saying things like that. Or maybe she’s just stupid. I prefer the latter assertion.

    She may have sold 350,000 copies of several books, but this number is not that awe-inspiring, considering that a professonial wrestler (Mick Foley) sold 800,000 copies for ONE book – – his autobiography. Also, if I were Alisa, I wouldn’t put too much credence into being one of Time’s most “influential” Hispanics in America. I would aim to be one of the most influential Americans, period. Of course, she’s as “influential” as dead weight.

    Just my two cents.

    Keep up the good work, Val!!!!!!!!!!!

  46. Me parece es “muy conocida en su casa.” More likely, like many “lunar” types, such as Cynthia McKinney, “a legend in her own mind.”

  47. Bubba:
    I bought her “chicas sucias” book. I’m a pretty avid reader- since I teach grammar and lit. all day, I like to go to the dark side and read chic lit at home- I stay up late and finish a book in about 2 or 3 days. However, her book is still in my bookcase- I couldn’t get past the first 4 pages. I bought it a year ago. It’s quite dusty. I should ebay it.

    My Alisa, what a big head we have!

    Keep on blogging Val!

    Claudia

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