Welcome to Masala My Life! Why are we here? Because there's a story to tell, and we want to tell it authentically.
South Asians have been in the United States since the late 1700s, and we are an undeniable part of the rich history of this wonderful country that we call home. Those of us who live in the South can express our Southern identity wearing certain brands; those who love sports can express their loyalty easily.
But where do we find our South Asian American identity?
Masala My Life will tell our story. This is the story of wearing jeans in the morning and changing into full Bharat Natyam outfit and makeup in the afternoon. This is the story of having to answer the question “where are you really from” on the same day that listening to the Star-Spangled Banner at a baseball game brings you to tears.
Our story is funny, poignant, inspiring, frustrating – but it’s ours.
It’s graduating with a degree in journalism and then explaining that you do indeed speak English. It’s sneaking out for “secret hamburgers” during Hindu festivals. It’s loving Taco Tuesday as much as chana masala. It’s knowing how to make a mimosa and a samosa. It's spending time explaining or straddling two or more cultures.
This lifestyle is built on living a duality – and celebrating it. And owning it.
This is Masala My Life.
Masala My Life, while especially relevant to South Asian Americans, stretches far beyond that community. Consider a longtime Catholic enjoying daily yoga or a New York City businessman enjoying chicken tikka masala for lunch. South Asian culture has entered the United States on many levels – food, language, art, health and well-being, and more. Masala My Life recognizes and provides an avenue to express an authentic appreciation of the cultural connections.
South Asians come from different countries, practice different religions, and speak different languages, but there are threads that connect us all as we live in the United States. Masala My Life is built on and cherishes those threads.
— Anu Mannar