This or That with Sonia Sotomayor

I believe everything in life is 50/50. Even humans, like us, and non-humans like animals are made up of 50% of two other humans or non-humans. This natural division is partly what makes life a little difficult to be okay with all the time. We are divided not only internally by often doing something we really want to do and then judging ourselves for it, but also externally, in our world and state today. Anything that is divided technically is disconnected, cut, alienated, or broken. 

When it feels like our "self", our friendships, or our world wants just wants us to make just one choice or be just one thing, the best thing to do is hang out in the cut which is slang for the space between. This would allow feelings of self-judgment, intense schism, and even a little imposter syndrome to fall away, and not even all the way away, but far enough to give you room for more action and less reaction. I think this to be true and effective all around except for when playing a game of This or That in which case the point is to choose.

I am beyond grateful to have sat down with Justice Sonia Sotomayor last week in the Bronx for Loyal Nana’s Inner Views series, a one-on-one interview series featuring the modern day luminaries changing our cultural landscape.  

On this very cold Friday afternoon at Casita Maria on Southern Blvd in The Bronx, we sat and talked about her new children's book, Turning Pages: My Life Story which depicts the most important moments in her life that lead her from The Bronx to the Supreme Court. During my interview with the Justice, I proposed we play a rapid fire round of This or That and she was down…

Amanda Saviñón: Before my last question I want to do a rapid-fire round of  “This or That” where I’ll mention two things and you pick one you prefer with very little to no thinking.

Sonia Sotomayor: Ready…

AS: Earrings or bracelets? 

SS: [long pause]

AS: [laughs] NO THINKING, remember? 

SS:  That's a hard one for me! I'll say Bracelets but I love both of them equally.

AS: El rio or la playa? 

SS: La Playa

AS: Libraries or Museums? 

SS: Libraries

AS: Texas Hold 'em or Omaha?

SS: Texas Hold ‘em

AS: Bossa Nova or Fania All Stars  

SS: Who or who?

AS: Basically Antônio Carlos Jobim, João Gilberto and company or Celia Cruz, Ruben Blades and company.

SS: Yeah, that one! Fania All Stars.

AS: [rolls on the floor laughing though not quite.]

AS: Tostones or amarillos?

SS: Tostones

AS: If they weren’t so sinful, flan or tres leches?

SS: Flan.

AS: MMMMMM me too. Washington D.C. or New York?

SS: New York

AS: Julia de Burgos or Pablo Neruda?

SS: That’s another hard one. I like them both for different reasons. Julia. 

AS: El campo o La ciudad? 

SS: La Ciudad

AS: Gold or silver?

SS: Silver

AS: Home cooked or takeout?

SS: Homecooked