© Sahara Borja

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  1. On the train I see these girls and in my head I feel like we are distant cousins because of some shared physical traits, but of course we are not, we are perfect strangers. I am drawn to them because of our obvious differences (specific background and upbringing) but also because I see something of myself in them, though I am aware that I am projecting something about my own notions of “Latina-ness” onto them. It also has to do with growing up in a place (the suburban, Central Valley of California) and attending schools that were mostly homogeneous, and if not mostly Caucasian, then very segregated. Through them I am examining my own sense of self. These are the gorgeous Around the Way Girls that LL was pining after way back in 1990. These are the collective "She." She is street smart, down to earth, confident, beautiful, an every woman. She flies under the radar, but she’s a sleeper hit. She’s a good friend. She’s a keeper.