Who Counts First — Culturally Speaking?

By Thomas Kochman - 07.28.2010

An interesting U.S. Mainstream/Hispanic cultural difference occurred recently that I thought would be worth a blog.

My wife and partner Jean Mavrelis and I are compadres to a Mayan family in Chicago who fled Guatemala when they were in effect, being shot off their land, ended up in a refugee camp and ultimately, as part of the sanctuary movement, in Chicago where they now reside.

Part of the role and responsibility of being compadres, or god-parents, is to provide help when needed and when you can, much like family.

What’s culturally revealing and noteworthy is this.

We were already very satisfied with a Latino owned and run lawn service that we had been using for several years.

An issue came up for us however, when the Mayan family told us that a member of their family was starting up a lawn service business and would we start using him, instead of who we were using.

We made the switch but not without some reluctance and trepidation. Read more »