Sunday, October 23, 2005

Carmen Sandiego

I am in marvel of the awesomeness that is Carmen Sandiego.

While I was growing up, it was tough not having Hispanic role models in the media. I mean, there was Maria from Sesame Street... God, I hated her. She'd say, "Si means yes in Spanish!" then they'd cut to the next scene. She was a good little wife to Carlos and was always terribly well-behaved.

Sensitive, subservient, sickeningly sweet.

'Hmmm, if that's what Hispanic is, I'm certainly not it,' I used to think to myself. I searched for somebody to tell me that I could be someone in the world. There were all these programs on prime time about people-who-didn't-look-like-me doing all this cool stuff... and I got Maria.

The not-awesomeness that is Maria
Major let down, I tell you.

Dark clouds were on the horizon. Most people who looked like me on tv couldn't speak English, were being beaten by the cops, or lived in poor neighborhoods that seemed like they were made more of chain-link fence than houses.

Until she came along.

Carmen Sandiego just stole your underpants

That's right, suddenly there was a Hispanic woman that not only spoke perfect English, but she could get away with wearing a huge red trenchcoat and wide-brim fedora without looking like she was about to undergo nuclear combustion. Now that takes style.

She was amazing. She laughed at the racist system that had oppressed her for so long, walked right up to the Eiffel Tower, put it in her briefcase, and walked away like nothing had ever happened. Man, that was so much better than all the other Hispanic people on tv that couldn't even steal hubcaps properly!

And best of all... she was smart. She was so smart, she created these cunning plans to steal major landmarks and left clues for the helplessly white detectives, who simply had no chance of matching her criminal mastermind. She had no fear. I was in love.

In all honesty, I totally related to Carmen Sandiego as a kid. I'm not sure if you know the story behind Carmen, but I would never forget. She was an orphan that eventually joined the Acme Detective Agency in hopes of making the world a better place. However, after realizing that the system was corrupt, she took matters into her own hands by stealing the treasures of civilization. It was almost like she was telling mankind to not use overly-large obelisks to validate our civility, which is too often strained in our modern world. She became the most feared evil genius ever known to man.

I mean, last time I played the game, she was hiding in New Deli with Antarctica. That takes talent, I tell you.

She even seems to have transcended to different levels of existence. I mean, now there's 'Where in Time is Carmen Sandiego' and 'Where in Math is Carmen Sandiego.'

I think 'Where in Existential Philosophy is Carmen Sandiego' should be next.

"Do you even exist anymore, Carmen?"

"Define 'exist,' Gumshoe."

Now there's a character I can be proud to call my childhood role model.

2 Comments:

At 3:51 AM, Blogger One Man From Verona said...

Still planning to dress as your childhood idol for Halloween?

 
At 8:36 PM, Blogger apatheric said...

This post was cute. It appears that Carmen has stolen your heart.

 

Post a Comment

<< Home