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blank tag co. And mitú Just Partnered To Release Exclusive Latino Inspired Food Pin Sets

blank tag co. has become an iconic sticker company with one of the most recognizable sticker designs. The sticker company is widely popular in the Latinx community and with so many stickers featuring Latinx street foods but the concept for this sticker brand originated in Japan.

Alondra Carbajal and Remi Silva were in a long-distance relationship and usually met in cities across the U.S. to reconnect and travel together. However, their first international trip together would spark an idea that would lead them to embark on their first business endeavor.

While in Tokyo, the couple came across a shelf full of stickers made by B-Side Label. They encountered the Japanese focused stickers a few times while traveling around Japan. When the couple arrived back home, they couldn’t get their minds off of the high-quality stickers. They were very impressed with the label’s ability to represent so many sides to Japanese culture.

Inspired from their trip to Japan, Alondra and Remi were determined to create a diverse line of stickers in the U.S. And then, blank tag co. was born.

The couple wanted each sticker to represent a culture and tell a story. They also wanted to create designs that would capture memories.

After the launch of their sticker company, the brand started to gain traction and some of the best-selling stickers were in fact culturally relevant stickers like conchas, tacos de asada, micheladas and paletero carts.

Following the success of blank tag co.’s stickers, mitú has partnered to release an exclusive line of blank tag co. snack pack pins. Now you can take these pins everywhere like this Mexican Snack Pack.

This Mexican Snack Pack features three of blank tag co.’s top-selling Mexican designs, The Magonada, The Chicharrones and The Elote. All three are extremely nostalgic. Doesn’t this instantly trigger memories of walking through your neighborhood or rushing through the crowd after church to get to these snacks?

There’s also a triple threat Salvadoran Snack Pack pin set.

This pin set features everyone’s favorite Salvadoran foods. Yep, Pan con Pavo is included with a side of Ensalada Drink and of course, you know a full Pupusa Plate is part of this iconic trio.

We’re also representing for our primos cubanos.

You can’t call it a Cuban meal without starting with a fresh cup of cafecito. Up next: Cuban Sandwich plate with Tostones. With tostones! You know it’s legit when it comes with a side of the savory tostones. To seal the deal, a decadent Tres Leches.

We couldn’t forget about the heroes in our community, the ones who are always griding past that 9-5, the only men who we are willing to chase and the ones who always make us smile.

Introducing the Snack Pack To-Go that features the carts that make us feel like we’re seeing water in a desert, The Frutero Cart, The Taco Truck and The Paleta Cart. There isn’t anything that brought us more joy in the summer and how you can carry a piece of that joy with you everywhere you go.

Anthony Ramos Recalls Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Advice About Not Having To Change How You Speak

Entertainment

Anthony Ramos Recalls Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Advice About Not Having To Change How You Speak

intheheightsmovie / anthonyramosofficial / Instagram

The 92nd Academy Awards were filled with unexpected wins and losses. However, the red carpet was home to some of the most memorable moments of the night. One moment that really stood out was Anthony Ramos telling Ryan Seacrest one of the first bits of advice Lin-Manuel Miranda gave him.

Anthony Ramos dazzled on the red carpet at last night’s Academy Awards.

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Oscars.

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Ramos and his fiancée Jasmine Cephas Jones stunned on the red carpet with their looks. Ramos and Jones got engaged in December 2018 after knowing each other for three years as costars on the wildly successful “Hamilton.”

During his interview with Ryan Seacrest, Ramos recalled a touching moment he had with Lin-Manuel Miranda.

Seacrest asked the rising star about his time spent working with Miranda and Ramos had a touching story ready to go.

“Lin told me a quote one time,” Ramos told Seacrest. “I cracked a joke and I was like, ‘Ah. That’s kind of hood. I should probably change the way I speak.’ Lin said, ‘Papa, you never need to change the way you speak. You just have to make sure that people understand you.’ I’ll never forget that quote.”

Ramos added about the authenticity Miranda draws from him: “Just be honest. Just be who you are and be honest and he just kind of let me do my thing on set.”

The advice is something so many people of color can relate to and appreciate.

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Whether it is sounding hood like Ramos said or speaking with an accent, our voices have been made to feel less than. Miranda’s advice is something so many people could have used when they were younger. There is nothing more empowering than owning every part of your identity and your voice and accent are part of that. There is nothing wrong with sounding like your background as long as you make sure everyone else can understand you and who you are.

The moment is reminding fans how much they care for Ramos’s and Miranda’s relationship.

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A quick search on the Internet will show you the kind of friendly love between the two entertainers. Miranda has spent time in his own career to uplift the upcoming actor. During the awards ceremony, Miranda called Ramos a movie star giving a nod to the highly anticipated performance by Ramos in the upcoming “In The Heights” film.

Who else is excited to see this bromance grow this year?

Credit: anthonyramosofficial / Instagram

It is these kinds of those friendships that we want more of. Thank you for showing off that Latin excellence while uplifting each other. That’s the kind of energy we need to take into 2020.

READ: Trailer For ‘In The Heights’ Is Finally Here And It Looks Like A Latino Fairytale

Shakira’s Song ‘Whenever, Wherever” Reaches No. 1 After Her Super Bowl Performance But Latinos Have Always Adored Her

Entertainment

Shakira’s Song ‘Whenever, Wherever” Reaches No. 1 After Her Super Bowl Performance But Latinos Have Always Adored Her

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As the youngest in five, I rarely had the chance to travel alone.

How could I? With a paranoid mom and a closed-off dad, it was hard to ask for permission to venture out on my own. Sure, I had traveled a lot including abroad but I was either always with a family member or close friends. One year, my friend Sandra and I ventured throughout Mexico — a country I had never discovered on my own. When I was younger, I mostly stayed in the state of Nayarit because that’s where my family is from. So I never had a reason, or the courage, to learn more about the surrounding states in Mexico.

That was until my friend Sandra introduced me to a magical city, right in the center of the country.

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She had studied in Queretaro, Mexico, as part of her study-abroad program in college. I felt a little ashamed that someone like me — a proud Mexican Latina — had never been there, let alone any other state outside of Nayarit.

She took me there years later when I was 25 and fell in love with this incredible historic city — and sequentially someone else too.

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One night — at a club — I saw a man, unlike anyone I had ever seen before.

Think of a Mexican version of John F. Kennedy Jr. He was dapper, preppy, and totally hot.

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Completely out of my league too — or so I thought.

I didn’t think I’d ever see him again, but the following night we returned to that same club and there he was, but this time at the table next to ours.

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I coyly started dancing with him because why not? We ended up dancing the entire night together and I felt like I was literally floating.

Being there, in Queretaro, among local Mexicanos, listening to their music — unfiltered and unAmericanized, I had never felt that alive in my life.

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This is when I discovered so much incredible Latin music like FobiaCafe Tacuba and Shakira.

I should rephrase that. I discovered Spanish-speaking Shakira years after she had released her 1998 album “Dónde Están los Ladrones?”

The album catapulted her into a Latin superstar and I was in awe of her rocker chick vibe.

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While I loved my individuality as an alternative Chicana, I sure didn’t embody the independent woman I longed to be.

Even though I expressed a love for Spanish rock music, I was in a lot of ways very shy.

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But Shakira’s album made me feel different.

The song that truly moved me on that album is called “Si te vas.”

At first listen the song comes off as a ballad but it’s much more of a painful rock song that happens to be about a loss of love — as most songs are.

However, in this track, Shakira’s angst is infused throughout it just by the way she vocalizes certain aspects of the words.

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But this is my favorite part:

“Si te vas si te vas si te marchas

Mi cielo se hará gris

Si te vas si te vas ya no tienes

Que venir por mi

Si te vas si te vas y me cambias

Por esa bruja pedazo de cuero

No vuelvas nunca mas, ya no estaré aquí.”

But back to my imaginary love story. His name was Antonio.

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And he was an architect that lived in Queretaro. I was infatuated, to say the least. After our night of dancing, we went on a couple of dates, and one, in particular, that is too steamy to get into.

Soon after I returned to California soon after still on cloud nine.

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But that’s all it took.

I really thought I was in love with this Mexican heartthrob.

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When I returned to my real life, Antonio and I kept in touch.

We emailed, talked on the phone, and in my head, I was already scheming about how to go back to see him.

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I didn’t know how I would go back to Queretaro, but I knew that I had to. What I felt for Antonio was undeniable and I wasn’t going to let anything get in my way.

I didn’t tell anyone about my plan.

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I would just sit in my room — yes, I was a 26-year-old that still lived at home — and listened to Shakira’s album and think about Antonio.

One day it hit me. I would save money, enough for three months’ worth of rent, and move to Queretaro.

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I talked to my parents about it and simply said: “I need to get away and just write.”

My parents didn’t fight with me over the plan.

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I secretly think they just wanted me out of the house. And so I saved, and saved, and saved, every penny I could get my hands on. When I finally had enough, I bought a one-way ticket to Mexico City. I don’t even remember being scared.

I just remember having a direct plan and listening to my Shakira playlist.

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It didn’t feel like I was alone either. When you’re traveling alone and listening to music, it’s like your famous friends are there right there with you.

I stayed at the most picturesque house in Queretaro and didn’t even tell Antonio that I was coming to town.

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Yes, that was probably a mistake, but I didn’t care to hear anything negative. I guess underneath I knew what I was doing was kind of nuts, but love makes you do crazy things. When I did tell Antonio that I was in town, he said what I was dreading:

“You didn’t come here for me, did you?” he said.

“No! Of course, not. I came to write,” I said quickly.

“Oh, that’s good, because I have a girlfriend,” he said.

I think at that moment my body went numb because I don’t remember feeling sad or angry, just kind of in shock.

“How long have you been with her?” I said. I should note that it had only been a few months since I had last seen him.

“Always,” he said. “I’ve always been with her.”

The next couple of hours were a daze, but I cried myself to sleep that night. Here I was in Queretaro, all alone, and three more months to go. The next morning, I got up early, turned on my Shakira playlist and went for a run.

Credit: Araceli Cruz

Even though I was sad about the fact that Antonio had a girlfriend the entire time we were together, I realized how special it was that I was in this amazing city.

For the next three months, I did write.

I wrote a lot in fact, and I also met someone else.

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That relationship didn’t go beyond my time in Queretaro, but I loved knowing that heartbreak would not be the end of me.

The joy of being alone in Queretaro and doing exactly what I had envisioned all on my own was all I needed.

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Even now when I listen to “Si te vas” I never feel sad about Antonio, just pure happiness that I did something pretty extraordinary and have memories that will last me a lifetime.