In February, I spent a month in Mexico, working in Mexico City and traveling to Oaxaca and my grandmother’s birthplace of Juchipila, in the state of Zacatecas. After moving to California from Mexico in the 1940s, she worked hard to assimilate her family into an American identity, and it worked so well that I never questioned or investigated my Mexican roots. Spanish was not taught or spoken in my home, and Mexico wasn’t a place with tangible meaning. I always marked off “white” and not “Latin” or “Hispanic” on forms, because I never felt that I proved my worthiness to identify as someone with a Latin heritage. I’m a half-Mexican, half-white, brown-skinned man named Ryan Christopher Jones, and my name provided me with the privilege of not being automatically seen as a Mexican in a place where the word “Mexican” was spoken with a snarl. For that, I reveled in my ambiguity.