By Javier Manjarres
You might not believe it, but some people have told me that they’ve thought that Senator Marco Rubio and I are related . A few others have even told me that we look very much alike. While we’re not related nor do we even remotely resemble each other, I’ve learned that we do share a great deal in common because of our similar upbringing and Hispanic heritage.
For the record, I would like to again reiterate that I am much taller, tanner, athletic and far more self-absorbed than the Senator from Florida
Earlier today as I was sitting in the Fort Lauderdale airport terminal waiting to board a plane to the RightOnline convention in Las Vegas, I decided to use the opportunity to crack open my advanced copy of Senator Rubio’s memoir, “An American Son.” First of all, let me thank Marco for acknowledging me in his memoir, which was the least he could do after I almost single handily pushed him over the finish line in 2010. As I began to read through the first couple of chapters, my phone rang, and lo and behold, Florida’s junior Senator was on the line.
I was in the middle of reading about how Marco’s favorite ironed on t-shirt while he growing up was a ‘shark’ shirt of the movie ‘Jaws’. Little did lil’ Marco know that some 30 years later that he would be dealing with the jaws of another big political shark during his successful 2010 U.S. Senatorial campaign.
Rubio’s account of his early years brought on a rush of emotions to me, something my close friends and family will tell you is a rarity, as they seem to think that I am not fazed by much- this is true.
The Rubio family’s departure from Cuba to the U.S. and the struggles his family encountered are eerily similar to that of the Manjarres family’s early struggles and those of countless numbers of other Hispanic families. Marco’s early years seemed a bit calamitous and clumsy, as he describes days where he envisioned himself as “fighting crime” like Batman. Unlike Marco, who had an apparent thing for superheroes in tights, I too role-played as the ‘Six Million Dollar Man’ but not the tights-wearing crime fighting Batman. POW! BAM! ZAP! KABOOM!
I also learned that Rubio and I shared a similar childhood orthopedic condition which forced us both to having to use a leg brace to correct the issue. I vividly remember having to sleep with this brace that to this day occasionally alters my sleeping position.
Rubio also says that he was an impatient boy, and that’s true to this day. Over the past several years, I have witnessed the phenomenon that is Rubio’s impatience. His book answers a lot questions and concerns I had about his little quirks, and it’s pretty apparent to me that Rubio is as impatient as I am. We are both ‘that guy’ who needs to know something- and we must know it now- not later, but now. What is that ol’ saying, patience is a virtue?
One of the pictures that Marco inserts in his memoir is one of him and his sister Veronica- and Veronica, I feel your pain for having to grow up with this guy. In the picture, Marco is sticking his tongue out to the camera while wearing a very fitting ‘Three Stooges” t-shirt. I think the joke was on Marco, as he was sporting the same bowl-cut hairdo that Moe was famous for.
I’m making my way through my advance copy of Marco’s memoir, and over the next week or so I’ll be sharing some tidbits of information and my thoughts on the book. This book is a must read, and I encourage you to go to Amazon.com com go pick it up, it’s well worth your time and money investment.
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