Jacoby Mena Oral History, 2020/11/08


Title (Dublin Core)

Jacoby Mena Oral History, 2020/11/08
Interview with a San Antonio high school student, Jacoby Mena

Description (Dublin Core)

Jacoby Mena, a 9th grade student, shares his views on staying home, the BLM movement, anti-maskers, and staying safe during the pandemic.

Recording Date (Dublin Core)

Creator (Dublin Core)

Contributor (Dublin Core)

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Partner (Dublin Core)

Type (Dublin Core)

audio recording

Controlled Vocabulary (Dublin Core)

Curator's Tags (Omeka Classic)

Contributor's Tags (a true folksonomy) (Friend of a Friend)

Collection (Dublin Core)

Exhibit (Dublin Core)

#CoverYourFangs>Keeping in Touch

Date Submitted (Dublin Core)


Date Modified (Dublin Core)


Date Created (Dublin Core)


Interviewer (Bibliographic Ontology)

Cristal R. Mendez

Interviewee (Bibliographic Ontology)

Jacoby Mena

Format (Dublin Core)


Coverage (Dublin Core)


Language (Dublin Core)


Duration (Omeka Classic)


Bit Rate/Frequency (Omeka Classic)


abstract (Bibliographic Ontology)

Jacoby Mena, a 9th grade student, shares his views on staying home, the BLM movement, anti-maskers, and staying safe during the pandemic.

Transcription (Omeka Classic)

Cristal R. Mendez
Okay. Jacoby tell us a little bit about yourself.
Jacoby Mena
My name is Jacoby Mena. I'm from San Antonio, Texas. I'm in the ninth grade. I don't really—or-- I like drawing. I play games and I watch anime.
Cristal R. Mendez
Okay, and how are you handling pandemic life?
Jacoby Mena
I think I’m handling it doing pretty good. I think I've kind of gotten used to it. Before it was kind of a little hectic because it was different than from what we were like regularly doing--what we were used to.
Cristal R. Mendez
And how often did you go out in public versus now? Has there been a big change?
Jacoby Mena
Not really
Cristal R. Mendez
You never used to go out before?
Jacoby Mena
Well it wasn't really that that much. I mean, now I'm like, I guess. Yeah, because before I used to go out to like the stores when they would go-- when my parents would go grocery shopping. But now I really just stay home and just do like homework stuff.
Christina Mena (Jacoby’s mother)
The movies, we used to take you to the movies.
Cristal R. Mendez
And how do you feel like as far as being connected to the city--San Antonio? Because you would go out and stuff with your parents, right?
Jacoby Mena
Oh, yeah. Well, I feel kind of--I would say I do feel disconnected. It's not really like--Like going out to places was fun, but like now it's not like--We're just staying home and not really going anywhere to have fun--to just checking up on our family and seeing how they're doing. So it's mostly just staying home.
Cristal R. Mendez
And before, what were some of the places that you liked going to with your family?
Jacoby Mena
Oh, I think mostly like going to like the mall and going to places there. But now it's like you can't really go because how many people are there. Even if--they're not even like open or if some of the stores aren't allowing that many people in or you really just don't want to get the virus.
And we used to travel a lot, too. So traveling to like--When we went to like California or went to Disneyland. We don't really get to do that anymore just because of how much--how bad it is. And the people that are out and about not wearing masks. We used also eat at a bunch of different restaurants too, but now we're just stuck at home like making our own food. We don't really want to catch the virus.
Cristal R. Mendez
So have you all not gone to any dining rooms or restaurants at all?
Jacoby Mena
No, we haven't really gone.
Cristal R. Mendez
So none of like your favorite places--have you been able to visit any of them? Like, I know you said you used to go to the mall a lot. Have you done any kind of traveling or gone to any parks or anywhere?
Jacoby Mena
Not really. We haven't gone. I haven't gone to the mall at all. I haven't really gone to any new places I would say I like--my favorite places really.
Cristal R. Mendez
So overall, you’re kind of unusual because you're like a homebody. You've always been like a homebody, so I feel like the pandemic life, in a way, kind of suits you. Is that fair to say?
Jacoby Mena
Kind of, yeah. But I feel for some people like some of my friends, they weren't really people who stayed home or like staying home. They kind of were people who were busy and like doing stuff, so they don't really get to do stuff that they like and they kind of feel like they're not able to do things. But for me, really, I really just like staying home. Not really doing that many things, or—yeah.
Cristal R. Mendez
What about when the pandemic is over? I'm sure you'd want to go somewhere. What's like the first place that you want to go to at least in like San Antonio?
Jacoby Mena
San Antonio wise, probably to the mall to see if they have any like new things to buy or anything like that.
Cristal R. Mendez
What about like the movies, or are you much into like going to theme parks or anything like that?
Jacoby Mena
I like to go to the movies. I know there was a bunch of movies that we haven't been able to see just because they've been in theaters and not really like on Netflix or anything new like that.
Cristal R. Mendez
And have you tried going to any new places like maybe places that your parents have taken you just to try and get you out of the house? Are there any like safe places that y'all have been to?
Jacoby Mena
I think the safest place we've been to that's been pretty good that don't have that many people is probably the Botanical Gardens. I've been there like four times, I think. And it's pretty good. We have like the passes there so we get in early so there's not that many. There's, like, not that many people at all.
Cristal R. Mendez
Okay. Have you gone to any places like the zoo?
Jacoby Mena
No we haven't, we been basically just staying home.
Cristal R. Mendez
So pretty much the Botanical Garden, is it?
Jacoby Mena
Pretty much, yeah.
Cristal R. Mendez
Wow. You all have been doing really good with staying home. Well, I guess it helps that your mom is a nurse, right?
Jacoby Mena
Christina Mena (Jacoby’s mother)
Because his dad's a psycho. Ha! Don’t put that in there.
Cristal R. Mendez
What else do you want to add Jacoby that you'd like people in the future to know about this time and like, you know, trying to stay not only busy, but like entertained? What should people know about this time? Like, what were you doing what was going through your mind?
Jacoby Mena
Well what’s mainly going through my mind is--is everything going to stay the same? Like before everybody has kind of stayed on the same flow. They were doing what they wanted to do and what they got to do. I mean, there's still people who are doing the stuff, which they really shouldn't be doing that. Getting more people sick, who really don't want to be sick. And like, now we're not really on the same flow. It's just everybody's staying home or if they are staying home.
I mean, because there's still those people who are dumb, who are spreading the virus not listening to what health officials are saying to do and not listening to what the people are saying to do what to do. So it’s kind of just like, are we really safe though?
Thinking about it like, are we safe because the thing is--It's just like, it's just crazy to think that I'm in a time where it's kind of like the plague. What happened back then. It's kind of like the same thing, basically the same thing in my eyes.
Cristal R. Mendez
Yeah, it is, and I agree. A lot of people don't realize it, and I think that's why it's important for people to understand like what's going on right now. Because I don't think that people will ever really grasp what it was like during this time, if they didn't live through it. So yeah. I mean, that's good. You offer a different perspective than what some adults might say, because some adults don't want to stay home and those are the dumb ones that I think you're referring to.
Jacoby Mena
Cristal R. Mendez
What is your wish for 2021? How do you hope--What do you hope it looks like?
Jacoby Mena
I hope that more people are listening, that they're not disregarding what these people are saying, they're not being dumb. Because I mean the countless lives that are lost, just because some people were partying at a college or going to bars or going to other places, which they really shouldn't be going and getting other people sick that don't want to get sick. They’re going to store not wearing masks causing problems at stores for the people who are telling them to wear a mask. And I just hope that it's better--coronavirus is settled down, it's not really as crazy. And hope that doesn't still change the minds of people who think oh it settle down so let's go to a party, or let's go to bars, let's go to places, let’s not wear our masks. Still, if it's still there you can still get it. So it’s just people being needing to be safe.
Cristal R. Mendez
And do you feel safe, like in our city and San Antonio? Do you feel like they've done a good job here?
Jacoby Mena
I do, I haven't seen-- I haven't really seen that many people not wearing masks and maybe seeing one or two people maybe not wearing a mask, but I still see them wearing masks, which makes me happy. But at least they're wearing masks and trying to be safe because you always see those people on the news like not wearing masks causing trouble at like Costco, or Walmart.
Cristal R. Mendez
I agree with everything that you said. I think those are all my questions. Unless you have anything else that you want to add.
Jacoby Mena
Just saying safe is really my main thing. It's just listening to the people that are--actually know what's happening. It’s just listening to, like, the science of things. Don't disregard the science at all because that's what's helping all of us.
Cristal R. Mendez
Do you think-- do you ever watch like the updates from Ron Nirenberg and Nelson Wolff? Have you ever seen them on the news?
Jacoby Mena
No, I don't think I've ever seen them.
Cristal R. Mendez
Okay, I was just curious because they're the ones that have been instrumental in like making all these rules for San Antonio, and they tried really hard to get people to follow these rules, even when they didn't want to. So we have them to thank. But yeah, I agree, like you know--Safety is number one. And it's really interesting to hear that even though you're so young, you've been very responsible, I feel. Like in social distancing and just staying home. And it sounds like you really only go out to visit your family, right? Like do you go to see other friends? Have you yourself gone to any like big parties or anything that you feel was not safe?
Jacoby Mena
No, I haven't really gone anywhere to a party or not really at all. It's just like when we go see our--like my grandparents we stay at the fence and they say at the door and we talk to them from there. Or they're wearing their masks or we're, we're both wearing our masks, even though we're still far away to make sure that we don't spread it to them. Because I mean the elderly, they are the ones that are most--their most able to get the virus.
Cristal R. Mendez
So where do you get all your information from, regarding the pandemic?
Jacoby Mena
Mainly the news. It's just I-- I personally haven't watched the news, but just when it's on. I listened to it because I, I really don't like focusing on the news. It's usually just bad stuff happening. Like, I really don't like hearing like stuff like the whole-- Also like during this time to like the whole Black Lives Matter movement like the way that was happening too during this time, too. Which I was like I really like hope that that changes. Like people--white people who are doing this stuff like they need to listen to what these people are asking for, because it's not really fair to them.
Cristal R. Mendez
Yeah. Do you think that having a new president will help the Black Lives Matter movement?
Jacoby Mena
I do. I feel like our last president wasn't really. He wasn't great and he wasn't the best. Like he didn't do that much for the black community by far, I don't think. And I just hope that our – [audio lost] to help out. And help like unite people instead of just dividing them completely. I mean, that's what the last president did. He just divided and decided--People are--one side is better and the other side is just complete trash. It really should be just everybody's equal like it's United States of America for a reason. We’re not supposed to be divided.
Cristal R. Mendez
Yeah, I agree. So I guess that's another thing you'd like to see in 2021. Safety and unity. Anything else that you'd like to see for next year?
Jacoby Mena
Not really, those are my main things. People need to be safe because it's just going to bring up the death toll even more than what it is already. Which, to me, that's a lot of people have died. And that's pretty big and the countless lives that have been lost in the black community for like the officers who are hurting them for not really any reason at all, and people who are being racist or deciding that it's okay to carry a gun. Or to sell guns really to people who need help. It’s just being safe, really.
Cristal R. Mendez
Okay. Good. Thank you for sharing your perspective. I'm going to press stop now. But we'll continue with our conversation. Thank you.

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