Yenisel Rodriguez’s Diary

During the Playoffs Many Cubans Feel Like a People

May 28, 2012 | 1 Comment »

Many people look forward to the playoffs so that they can in some way participate in an activity of the people. When a team in the series performs well, a miracle occurs. Nothing and no one is able to repress or oppose the joy, laughter and euphoria of its followers.

Kawasaki or Suzuki

May 24, 2012 | No Comments »

Generally the motorcycle that’s liked most is the one that’s defended the loudest, the one that gets the most arguments of “because that’s the way it is”. Distancing oneself from of these emotional modes means losing shares of normality to the majority.

How I Became an Accomplice

May 13, 2012 | 1 Comment »

A few days ago I traveled to San Jose de las Lajas, like I do almost every week. For this trip, I always stash away 10 pesos for the taxi ride – an investment that prevents me from getting dehydrated on the highway waiting for a public bus.

The Working Class Atheism that Still Remains in Cuba

May 9, 2012 | No Comments »

The “Reve Orchestra,” a popular Cuban musical group, boasts among its many successes one very peculiar song: “Agua pa Yemaya” (“Water for Yemaya”). It’s a catchy tune inspired by the goddess Yemaya of the Afro-Cuban Yoruba religion.

The Ideological Success of Neoliberalism in Cuba

April 29, 2012 | 9 comments

The authorities have proclaimed the deregulation of Cuba’s economy as inevitable, as they quietly accept the consolidation of inequality as well as decreased social spending and the renunciation of full employment as a goal.

Outta the Park

April 23, 2012 | No Comments »

Going onto the grounds outside the stadium of Havana’s “Metropolitanos” baseball team, a ball suddenly landed right next to me. It had apparently been batted out by the cleanup hitter for the capital’s “red team.”

State Capitalism in Cuba Embodied

April 18, 2012 | 8 comments

I was walking through the always surprising streets of Havana’s Vedado district, where each block constitute its own micro-world environment with trees and shadows. While looking for a friend’s house, I came upon one of those mansions that were confiscated back in the 1960s and converted into the headquarters of some government institution or office.

Havana Police and People with Money

April 13, 2012 | No Comments »

All of us had great expectations when we got the news that the recruitment of Havana police officers would start being done from here in the capital itself. When I say expectations, I mean that people thought there would be changes in the broadest sense of the word.

Healthy and a Full Stomach, A Challenge for Cuba and the World

April 3, 2012 | No Comments »

A question came to me: Why do most people have a hard time giving up junk food? The reason’s quite clear: People don’t want to give up the flavors they recognize as “tasty”!

Lousy International Contracts for Cuban Musicians

March 28, 2012 | 1 Comment »

Despite the poor working conditions, succeeding at signing one of these super-exploitative contracts is a big deal for any member of the precarious community of Cuban musicians.