La Vida Más Chévere de Childfree Latinas

Take That Risk with Luis Octavio - Ep 45

August 08, 2023 Paulette Erato
La Vida Más Chévere de Childfree Latinas
Take That Risk with Luis Octavio - Ep 45
La Vida Más Chévere
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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Serial entrepreneur and childfree Latino Luis Octavio has something to tell you about taking risks. He gives us the play-by-play of what it took to go from being a closeted experiential marketer to launching multiple companies and brands while fully embracing who he is as DI Güey. 

Take a tiny risk and attend DI Güey University with us in this episode as Luis throws out numerous pearls of wisdom like:

  • letting go of the need to be "perfect"
  • waiting for a "special occasion"
  • finding joy in a 9-5 life
  • how not having kids is not the end of your life
  • taking tiny risks now is an antidote to regret later

Which leads to our Question of the Week: what risk will you take after listening to this episode?

Let me know your answer by emailing me or dropping a comment on YouTube, Spotify, or Substack. Links below.

About Luis:
Luis Octavio is a serial entrepreneur always creating where no one is for the Latino community.  Find him online at:

To get the full show notes, and an episode transcript, go to PauletteErato.com/shownotes

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Like what you hear? Reach out to send your thoughts, and don't forget to grab a limited edition LVMC baseball t-shirt. Check it out at pauletteerato.com/shop.

How to reach me:

[00:00] Paulette: Buen día mi gente. And welcome to La Vida Más Chévere. The place where Spanglish speaking childfree, Latinas y Latines are learning to dismantle the toxic cultural bullshit we all grew up with. I'm your host, Paulette Erato.

[00:19] If you are a fan of D I Y and all things handmade and gorgeous, then today is a treat. And if you aren't yet familiar with the beautiful personality behind DI Güey, here's your crash course. Luis Octavio describes himself as a serial entrepreneur always creating where no one is for the Latino community. When he calls himself a serial entrepreneur, he is not kidding. In the first 10 minutes, we're gonna hear of about, I think three of his businesses. The man is driven. We're attending DI Güey University today because Luis is gonna drop lots of pearls of knowledge and not just d i y or DI Güey knowledge. Also life knowledge.

[01:01] We're challenging stereotypes today, as is our raison d'être. Look at me. I'm trilingual today. Okay. Well, actually there's going to be a lot of Spanglish spoken today. The Spanglish is in full force. For a translated version. Check out the Substack post always linked in the show notes and description. If you're watching this on YouTube, translations will be on the screen.

[01:24] Before we get into it, let me give you a heads up. I'm not gonna be interrupting much today with my narrative voiceovers. I'm just gonna let Luis speak for himself. I will note that there's going to be references to three key episodes prior to this one, all of which will be listed in the show notes and description.

[01:41] As only the second childfree Latino on the show, his story has parallels to my first male guest Fede, but also significant contrast. You'll hear him talk about how being out in the corporate world was something of a struggle. Luis is also really good friends with two of my previous guests, Pam and Linda, so of course we're gonna chat about them a little bit too.

[02:04] Funny enough, I met Luis first and that kind of created the domino effect of having all the other Latine powerhouses on the show. He also mentions Adelita's Revenge where we met. And if you're in Southern California, Adelita's Revenge is the place you gotta go. Because it is the only brick and mortar store that sells the brand new limited edition La Vida Más Chévere shirts available now.

[02:28] I'll leave you a link to find the store. It's in Long Beach! And many thanks to the proprietors, Yvonne Marquez y Marina Carranza, the childfree Latinas who run the store, for giving us the opportunity to meet on that fateful day. And also for carrying my shirt. Check out the link in the show notes and or the description to get your shirt.

[02:48] They are once again limited edition. Once they're gone, they're gone.

[02:55] I really admire Luis and how he's not afraid to show his most authentic self to the world as he does nearly daily on TikTok. And his story, in which he'll tell you that that wasn't always true, is super important for you to hear as someone who might also be looking for their most chévere and authentic self too. If you're a parent, I want you to especially listen to how he talks about his own and what his support system looks like, how his own father, an immigrant too, is also on a healing journey.

[03:25] I will break in with one trigger warning late, late, late, late, late in the episode. And you can skip to the next chapter, which will be about a minute, 45 seconds down the way if you need to get past it. Because there is a mention of self-harm that maybe you just don't wanna hear today.

[03:39] Oh, and the title of this episode is related to our question of the week, which is: what tiny risk will you take after listening to this episode so that you don't, at the end of your life, have any regret? You can email me your answer or check out the links in the show notes or description to leave it there.

[03:57] Let's get on with it.

[03:58] ¡Buen día mi gente! Today, I have the one and only Luis Otavio DI Güey here on this show, and I'm so excited because Luis, you're like only the second guy to be on this program. You are breaking down barriers with me over here.

[04:14] Luis: Yes, yes. Break down of those barriers.

[04:17] Paulette: ¿Y como estas?

[04:18] Luis: Estoy bien. I am, I am, I'm blessed. I am in in such a great mood and I am happy that we're doing this, especially right now because I just got back from Mexico.

[04:30] I dunno if your audience is, is going to be able to see the video recording, but I am actually laying in bed. Oh, they are?

[04:35] Paulette: They are.

[04:36] Luis: ¡Me debería peinado!

[04:37] Paulette: We're real on this show. You look beautiful as good as I always see you . Online, in person because we have actually met in person, which I love.

[04:47] Luis: Yes, yes. Yeah, I'm in bed because I'm recovering.

[04:50] I just got back from Mexico and that was such a whirlwind because I actually was out there working. Or as I like to say, working it. It was a lot, but, but I'm recovering. I fell from the second floor through like in, in las escaleras. That was like a meme. I hope somebody caught that so that I can finally go viral, like real viral.

[05:10] Paulette: Are you okay?

[05:10] Luis: Yeah, I'm fine. It was just, it was just one of those like freak accidents, but I'm all bruised up from all the right side of my body.

[05:17] Paulette: Oh no, probrecito.

[05:19] Luis: Si so, so I've been recovering since I got back. But everything is great and I'm happy. As I mentioned, I'm blessed. Asi que excited to be on your podcast.

[05:28] Paulette: I'm excited to have you. So backstory on you and how we met was random. We were at a store locally here in Long Beach. You're also a Southern California guy. They were having a D I Y make your own piñata night for Valentine's Day. And we walk in and who's the fabulous host of this event, but Luis Octavio of TikTok fame, which is how you were billed. Like you were a big deal.

[05:56] I mean, you are a big deal, obviously. Anyway, so this man was teaching us all how to make piñatas. Y two weeks later, you're on the podcast Cafe con Pam.

[06:06] Luis: Yes.

[06:07] Paulette: Pam was on my podcast immediately after that, and here we are.

[06:11] Luis: It's funny because Pam had mentioned you and I was like, oh my God, that would be so great. Dice, I'm gonna mention to Paulette, si que no se que y yo ok chingon and then yes, the universe putting us together right? In meeting at this Long Beach store, Adelita's Revenge.

[06:27] In Long Beach during this DI Güey project that I was doing. And so, hey, it's meant to be and I'm happy to be here. And I'm happy that you are doing this podcast because we need more people. We need more podcasters. We need more different points of views because every point of view is valid or whether you agree with it or not, it's valid.

[06:47] Paulette: A hundred percent. And what you bring to this, this show today is just a pizazz, that most human beings are afraid to display, much less Latino men. And I remember you telling us that night that during lockdown, you let that all go and you're like, I'm gonna be me. And now you're living your vida más chévere, no?

[07:13] Luis: Yes, absolutely. Definitely la vida más chévere. It's been such a whirlwind and a lot of things have happened. Brief background on me. My background is in experiential marketing. I've always worked for corporate America. I've always done experiential events. And basically what that means is whenever you go to a festival, carnival, any kind of event, and you see a brand that is called experiential.

[07:35] And so my job was to create an experience for consumers, current and potential consumers so that they would remember the brand. And I've done that for over 20 years now. I've done it for the Hispanic market. Always, always, always the Hispanic market because that's the market that I know, right. And then my last five years of working in corporate America, I actually worked for the quote unquote general market and what they call general market are basically the gringos, the white folk.

[08:02] And when I was hired into that position, I said, "Hey, listen, I don't have any experience with the general market." And I remember this white lady telling me, "listen, it's the exact same thing. Don't worry about it." And I was thinking in my head, they probably need somebody like asap, which is why they're like, this guy seems qualified, let's just bring him in.

[08:21] Because literally, I was the only brown person in that office in Irvine, California.

[08:27] Paulette: Oh, wow.

[08:28] Luis: So I was just like, well, let's do it. 'cause I needed a job and I was like, "pues ni modo." And it's down the street from where I live. I live in Santa Ana. This is an Irvine. Let's do it. One of my biggest shocks was not what you needed to do for the quote unquote general market, but the fact that these big brands gave so much more money to the general market than they did to the Hispanic market, yet they expect so much more from the Hispanic market than they expect from the general market.

[08:56] And so, just to give you an example, the same brand that I had worked with in in different agencies would give the general market over a million dollars for a three month campaign. For the Hispanic market, they gave them $300,000 for three months, and in my head I was like, "holy shit, how is this even possible?"

[09:16] So then the general market would go to like real random events and pay an absurd amount of money. I remember taking the specific brand to Movies at the Park in Brooklyn. And this brand paid $15,000 to be at Movies in the Park where about a hundred people showed up. I was thinking in my head, how are you paying so much money? Are you, and you're okay with that?

[09:41] Yet we take you to places like Fiestas Patrias, where there's gonna be hundreds of thousands of people and you don't even want to pay $5,000 for a 10 by 10 space. How does that help me make that make sense? And so that's when I decided I need to do something else. I need to use my skills and what I've learned to really bring something to the table to my community. Not just take brands that clearly don't care about them, clearly are not thinking about them, and clearly just want to give them a little bit of money so that they can see that they're there so that they can buy their brands, and that when they go to the store, they remember that they saw it and that they purchased it, and hopefully become loyal customers.

[10:22] And that's when I decided to launch Molcajete Dominguero with my co-founder at that time, Gladys. And before that, when I was at this corporate office, my assistant was third, fourth generation Latina, and she loved conchas. She loved pan dulce. And I was like, okay, her birthday's coming up. Let me find globos that talk about pan dulce or that say pan dulce or they, they are pan dulce and no one had them.

[10:48] I was like, what the heck? How does no one have pan dulce balloons? They're already round. And I called my friends in Mexico and I was like, "por fa búscame globos de pan dulce" and they were like, "güey no existen." They're not available. So to make a long story short, me and my friend Donna launched Globitos Company, which is a mylar balloon company. And since then to now we've, we've sold over 35,000 pan dulce globitos and we now have over 11 designs.

[11:12] So, that's how this whole thing started of becoming an entrepreneur, creating events, Molcajete Dominguero, where we could gather everybody that sells Latino products, that are inspired by us, created by us, and that they don't have to wait around for our season. Which back then it was considered to be the Día de Los Muertos.

[11:31] And I was like, wait, we don't just exist in the Día de Los Muertos and all these vendors and all these small businesses have amazing products that should be featured year round.

[11:40] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[11:40] Luis: So that's how that started. Come the pandemic. I closed down for the pandemic because we couldn't have it, and I was like, TikTok was starting to come around and I wanted to see how TikTok worked.

[11:55] I wanted to understand it. I was like, what do I post on TikTok? Because when TikTok opened, it was all about the dancing and the, you know, and I was like, güey, yo no bailo asi. And plus I'm like older. I'm gonna look all ridículo. But now come to learn, the older you look, the more ridículo you look, the bigger you you are.

[12:16] Paulette: That's why you've blown up.

[12:17] Luis: Yeah, exactly. So I remember going through my personal Instagram and on the memories, there was a tablescape that I did that was like very Latino inspired.

[12:26] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[12:26] Luis: That was my very first post, and the very next day it had over like 400 views and I was like, oh my God, how did I get 400 views?

[12:34] I have zero followers. And then obviously by then I had started bringing followers in. In one week I had like 200, and then the next week I had like 500. And it just kind of kept on growing and I was like, okay, let me put something else similar to that. And I recycled old videos and then come to realize that people really liked my DIYs.

[12:55] And at the beginning I was using hashtag DIY a la Mexicana. But then to me that sounded like huevos a la Mexicana, and I was also thinking in my head, well now I'm excluding anybody who is not Mexicano. Right. That's like the biggest thing for me. I don't like to use any specific words that are going to exclude salvadoreños nicaragüenses y guatemaltecos anybody else.

[13:18] So then I was like, one day I was creating this D I Y and I was like, "güey, me quedó muy chido." And I used the word güey a lot. So it was like DIY, DIY, and I was saying the word DIY a lot. And I was like, DIY di güey di güey güey. And I was like, oh my god. DI Güey, right? Like, that's it. That is it right there. And so then it became DI Güey.

[13:43] And what I love about what I'm doing and what I've created through the TikTok channel, is that I like to give people ideas.

[13:51] Paulette: Yeah.

[13:52] Luis: And I don't give you, this is step number one, step number two, and then you first have to do this. And then secondly. I don't do that because I don't like to do that. The only reason why I don't do more DIYs that I see online is because they specifically say, first you have to prime, then you have to do this, and then da, da, da, da.

[14:11] And I'm like, güey, I'm just gonna do it like however I think it's gonna work. And people always clock me, right? Like, oh my God, you're not priming it. Or, oh my God, you're not sanding it. I'm like, if you'd like to send it and if you'd like to prime it, go ahead. I am doing it however, as as I like to say, or as people like to say, como Dios me da entender.

[14:34] That is it. And um, I think that that's why DI Güey has resonated with a lot of people.

[14:40] Paulette: Yeah.

[14:40] Luis: Many of us don't have the time, the resources, or the patience.

[14:45] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[14:45] Luis: And they've seen that literally, like the videos that I post that are about a minute long, that is obviously not how long it takes, but everything you see on there is literally what I do.

[14:57] There are no steps missing. Yeah. And I think that that's what gives people the will to be like, you know what, I'm gonna try it. I'm gonna try it because it doesn't look that difficult. Now, a year and a couple months later, I am almost at 50,000 followers. I've, I've been able to say no to brands because they're coming at me with like pennies.

[15:18] Paulette: Uhhuh.

[15:19] Luis: And I know what all of this is worth, and I'm not willing to give you my space for free.

[15:24] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[15:24] Luis: Or for pennies, especially not my followers who are amazing. And, and that's where I'm at now on TikTok.

[15:32] Paulette: It's amazing because the DIY space is so saturated con gringitas.

[15:38] Luis: Yes.

[15:38] Paulette: It's the Instagram Barbie look. The Pinterest. Mm-hmm. Look, it is very one dimensional and you know what? Props to all those people doing it that way.

[15:47] Luis: Mm-hmm.

[15:48] Paulette: You came out here and you're a little corner and you're like, I'm just gonna do it this way. Soy un hombre, soy Latino and I don't have to give you a recipe. Just follow along.

[15:58] Luis: Exactly.

[15:59] Paulette: And, and it's so loose and free and it doesn't feel like it has to be perfect.

[16:04] Luis: Exactly. It doesn't.

[16:05] Paulette: I love that it's just organic.

[16:07] Luis: It's organic. It's flows it and, and this is what I tell people because I focus on two things on my TikTok. The first one is the DIYs or the DI Güeys, right?

[16:17] The second one is tablescapes. And one of the things, listen, I've been doing this forever. You can ask anyone. I've done weddings, I've done quinceaneras, I've done bautisos because people see my aesthetic and they love it.

[16:33] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[16:33] Luis: Right? The times that I've done weddings, I've said to my, my friends, listen, I'll do it, but you can't come to me and say me estoy imaginando this, and then these colors, no.

[16:46] Paulette: Eres artista, you're an artist. You don't take direction. You, you take inspiration.

[16:50] Luis: Exactly. So when I, when I do those bigger events that I know that they're memorable events that you're gonna take on forever, I always tell people I have no problem in doing it. But you have to give me free range.

[17:03] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[17:03] Luis: You have seen what I've done, and if you love what I've done, then you need to trust that I will do something similar or better for your wedding or for your quince años or for your bautiso.

[17:13] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[17:13] Luis: And literally, I can count on two hands the number of times that I've done these kind of events, because I don't do them often.

[17:19] And I only do them for like friends and family members. Every single time they're just wowed by it. And I know that that sounds cocky as af.

[17:28] Paulette: Uh uh uh, Uhuh. We do not apologize for being proud of ourselves on this show.

[17:33] Luis: A bueno perfecto. Pero la verdad es que I am not a wedding planner and I am not somebody who decorates because I cannot take what is in your mind and bring it to life. I can't do that. For that, you hire professionals to do that because that's what they get paid for. Me, you just have to trust that you've seen my aesthetic and that you love it and that it's gonna be similar or better.

[17:57] And so back then, I would never post any of that on my Instagram because I wasn't out of the closet. I wasn't outta the closet until I was 28 years old.

[18:05] Paulette: Mmm.

[18:05] Luis: So I was, in my head, I was thinking if I post this, people are gonna be like, by default, of course he has to be gay. Right. I was working in corporate America, so it wasn't something that I was ready to be out and about.

[18:20] And so I think that what TikTok has done for me, and my family, is it's put one of my biggest talents on the forefront. And it's been beautiful to have other people see it and appreciate it. Love it. Want to recreate it. So when, as I was mentioning, I focus on two things, DIY or DI Güeys, which is, you know, more of like the traditional D I Y and my paparingo helps me with it, who has also become super popular.

[18:50] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[18:50] Luis: And there is the tablescape part of it. And so the tablescape part of it I focus on, don't worry about trying to follow rules. Que the fork goes on this side and the, the, the dessert spoon and the, the coffee and the drink, and like, don't focus on that. I like to focus on, put whatever it is you want on that table that makes you happy.

[19:18] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[19:18] Luis: If it makes you happy, then that's all that matters. If the plates are mix matching, that is fine. If you wanna serve chilaquiles in a bowl versus a flat plate, by all means do it. And my biggest lesson with that is do not wait for that special occasion to set up your table. Do it every day. Do it any day.

[19:41] Don't wait for that special occasion. Do it if it's just you, because that special occasion may never come.

[19:49] Paulette: Every day is a special occasion.

[19:51] Luis: Exactly. Exactly. But as as I mentioned, I think people think that they need to wait for a special occasion. For us, and I like to post it on there all the time. We use our plates every time we use our expensive plates for huevos con jamón, and we also use our expensive plates for sirloin steak or for a tamal, or for whatever the case may be.

[20:16] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[20:16] Luis: And I think that my family has learned that, and even my nephew the other day was like, which plate should we use? We're gonna have Chinese food. I'm like, which ones do you wanna use? He was like, I really like the blue ones. Bring them out. So it's about that. It's about making every day a special occasion, as you mentioned.

[20:36] Yes, every day is a special occasion. The moment you wake up and you're breathing and you're able to move, that is a special occasion that it should be celebrated. But building on that, I think that that's where the second part or the other part of DI Güey comes in: to remind people, you don't have to wait.

[20:54] Do it. Use your expensive China, use it all the time. Mix it, put un florero, una planta, una maceta whatever it is. As long as it makes you happy, as long as it makes your table beautiful to you, that's all that matters. Because I've also seen a lot of TikTokers that are like, You could never put the fork on this side or you could never, and this is how and two inches. And I'm like, ¡güey no mames! Like, shut the fuck up.

[21:22] Like, you know. So that's what TikTok has done for me. It's brought my father and I closer. I think he's healing some inner traumas that I absolutely love. I love seeing him. I just got back from Mexico and I just came back to a nearly almost finished painted house he's doing by himself. And I don't think that he would've had the courage to be able to do that before, but he's seeing that we are taking risks and that those risks are paying off and that these things look beautiful.

[21:51] And I think he is now really embracing the DI Güey.

[21:55] Paulette: That is so cool. I love the videos of your backyard.

[21:58] Luis: Gracias.

[21:59] Paulette: Those are my favorite. You know what I love about our culture especially but Latinidad that in general, we are not afraid of color. And this is another way that you break free of those restrictions. The Pinterest restrictions, that's what I'm gonna call 'em. So we all know what I mean.

[22:14] Luis: Yes.

[22:15] Paulette: That it's very clean. "Clean lines" just means devoid of color. And white. And boring.

[22:23] Luis: Absolutely. And you know what? I have a theory about that because I think when we go to Latin America, we see all this color. Mm-hmm. And then we get to the United States, and unfortunately we do lose color.

[22:34] We do lose interest in color because many of us rent. And many of us think, I'm gonna get that deposit back.

[22:41] Paulette: Right.

[22:42] Luis: And fact of the matter is that you don't. As much as you clean those walls, as much as you keep them white, as much as you don't hang anything from those walls, you're not gonna get your full deposit.

[22:52] And so for that reason, whenever I've rented, I've always seen that deposit as gone.

[22:58] Paulette: That's the cost.

[22:59] Luis: That's the cost of me coming home to my home.

[23:02] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[23:03] Luis: Not someone's home, I'm renting.

[23:05] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[23:06] Luis: And every single time that, that my partner and I have rented a home, we've painted, we've added color, we've added texture.

[23:13] And believe me you, I wanna say that maybe three outta five have said, "this is beautiful, we're keeping it this way." So, I would say add color. You can always paint it white. Yeah, to try to get that deposit back.

[23:28] Paulette: I will say I have always gotten my deposit back.

[23:31] Luis: Oh, you have?

[23:32] Paulette: I have.

[23:32] Luis: Okay. Well, you, you, you've learned the secret then.

[23:35] Paulette: But I've never painted walls, so I've always been afraid to paint walls.

[23:39] Luis: Uhhuh.

[23:39] Paulette: Right up to your point because I don't have your eye. I used to be a photographer. I can put pretty pictures on the wall

[23:45] Luis: Uhhuh.

[23:46] Paulette: But you have a different type of creativity that I would love to learn. To encompass. But back to what you were saying, I think that if you go into it just expecting that the deposit is the cost of being able to beautify your home the way that you feel comfortable in...

[24:02] Luis: It's worth it.

[24:03] It's worth it. It's, it's worth getting half of it or not getting it as long as you are coming home to your sacred space.

[24:10] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[24:11] Luis: Because every time I come home and I come to my painted walls or my yellow kitchen, it just feels great. And it even feels better when people are coming and visiting and they're like, "güey, this looks beautiful." Or "Wow, I would've never thought of like using this color."

[24:32] Paulette: Yeah, I will say that I've always had colorful furniture. We went from like a bright red couch set. Then we have a bright gold set now.

[24:42] Luis: Oh, wow.

[24:43] Paulette: And of pillows and just like rich jewel tones. That's my thing. So the walls are white. The landlord put in like really light beige carpet, so the carpet's basically white.

[24:54] And I just, I add furniture in color, like I, I finally broke out of the black IKEA furniture. I feel like it was a step up in my evolution as an adult. So now I have like green side tables and a dusty blue sideboard. Oh. I'm really into gold glass.

[25:12] Luis: Nice.

[25:13] Paulette: So like my frames are gold. My coffee table's gold and glass. My TV table's gold.

[25:18] Luis: Nice. Nice.

[25:19] Paulette: And they don't match, they're not the same color gold, all of them. Because they were bought at different times.

[25:24] Luis: And that is beautiful. That is beautiful. That's another thing, like don't make it mix and match. I hate walking into bedrooms where like the side tables, the bed, the everything is like same.

[25:36] Paulette: Everything symmetrical.

[25:37] Luis: And I'm like, Ugh, que pinche hueva. Like, give me something to look at. Give me texture, give me dimension, you know? But

[25:44] Paulette: Yes.

[25:45] Luis: You mentioned about having the aesthetic. I think for me, the aesthetic is not caring about what it's gonna look like together. Like as long as I love a piece, that's all that matters for me. If I love the piece, I wanna bring it in and it doesn't matter that it matches anything else.

[26:03] Paulette: Yeah. And anything can be made to match if the overall aesthetic is the, is about the same. Right.

[26:11] Luis: Claro.

[26:12] Paulette: Well, good. There's lesson number one from DI Güey. You needed the DI Güey University.

[26:17] Luis: Ay gracias. Yes. Yes. The DI Güey University, claro.

[26:21] Paulette: DI Güey University. So let's talk about what's, what's happening next then? Like what's next in the evolution of the DI Güey of Luis Octavio?

[26:30] Luis: I think for us, for me personally right now is, I'm trying to find a way to be able to constantly monetize DI Güey. Right now I am living at home. I'm, I'm about to turn 41 years old. I'm living at home with my partner. Luckily, I am very blessed that my parents are amazing, that they do have the space to have me and my partner here.

[26:52] And I think for many people saying that right is like, güey que pena. But I, I constantly say, you have to do what you have to do to be able to survive. And so right now I don't have a full-time job. I don't have a job that pays you a weekly check. And so right now my partner is the only one that's spearheading all of the costs.

[27:11] He's the breadwinner. He's the one that goes out, works, and comes back home. And so I am very blessed in the sense that I have a partner that is willing to allow me to explore my creativity. And that's the reason why I'm able to explore it, because my partner is allowing me to do that. Claro obviously we are not dining out.

[27:32] We are not going out on weekend vacations. We are not going out on vacations. We're not buying clothes every freaking month. And that is a sacrifice that him and I are both willing to make because we see that there might be a future in DI Güey. And I want to continue to grow my platform and I wanna continue to get sponsorships.

[27:51] But the end result for me is two things. The first one is to have a line of products. So already I am selling things on my website, and I always tell people that everything that I sell on there are things that I would use or things that I've used in my DI Güeys, and that I'm not just selling things to sell them.

[28:12] So recently I just launched a stencil so that you could stencil your floor. That whole thing started because the company that I bought my stencil that I did my patio from, I noticed that they just repost gringas.

[28:25] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[28:25] Luis: And I was like, you know what? I know a lot of people got that stencil because of me, because they've tagged me and they've shown me. So I'm not gonna tag you anymore and I'm gonna create my own. And I did. I created my own.

[28:37] And so that literally just arrived a day or two before I left to Mexico. So I need to now start posting videos on how to stencil y todo eso to start moving that product. So that is the number one goal, to have a line of products.

[28:52] And I'm also talking to other people, other companies that have seen that when I've tagged them or whatever, that they've seen an increase in sales.

[29:00] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[29:01] Luis: So we're trying to see if we can do a collaboration where it's like, this is the DI Güey Picks, right? So come get them, whatever. And then me get a percentage.

[29:11] Then the ultimate goal is to have a TV show, to have a a DI Güey TV show because there aren't a lot. There are some, but the one TV host who is from Mexico, who has a show on Discovery en Español, if you go to his Instagram, it's full of color. Like if you think I use color, he was like, move over bitch. Because he is just color, patterns.

[29:36] Beautiful work. He does amazing work. But then I saw his show and I was like, oh my God. They literally cut his wings. They've literally cut his wings off. And even the colors of the show, they're bland. So it's literally a carbon copy of like a T L C gringo show pero en español. And I'm like, why would he allow himself to have these people cut his color and his aesthetic?

[30:02] He's literally now doing an IKEA showroom. In my head I'm wondering, okay, maybe he got paid a lot and maybe this is the way he like has to put his foot in the door. Maybe this is how he's gotta start, but my idea of the ultimate DI Güey show is the following, and I already have the premise and I already have like how it's gonna work.

[30:22] And it's basically, we are going to pay people's deposits. We are going to pay people's deposits so that we can paint their walls so that we can come in there and give character to their home. So ultimately we would be working with people that are renting, pay them their deposit so they don't have to worry about getting it back.

[30:41] They're already getting it back. And they can come home to a space that they can call home that they can feel comfortable in and that they want to come home to.

[30:50] Paulette: Hmm.

[30:50] Luis: So that is the premise of the show. Obviously within that premise, we would be doing DI Güeys and teaching people how to bring life to a piece of furniture, whether it be a lamp, a chair, a sofa, a dining table, et cetera.

[31:05] And I'm hopeful that that can come to reality.

[31:08] Paulette: That's amazing. I'm super excited for that. Why don't you just start a YouTube channel?

[31:13] Luis: I do want to start a YouTube channel, but here's the thing, and this is my biggest obstacle. I need somebody to help me edit videos.

[31:20] Paulette: Oh yeah.

[31:21] Luis: I need somebody that could help me do that. And so, being able to edit on YouTube. Like I have one video on YouTube. I do have a YouTube channel. Pero si necesito alguien que me pueda ayudar a grabar y a editar. And so that is the biggest obstacle right now because I don't have the means to be able to pay someone to do that. And so I think that's why I, I need to focus on selling on my website. So that I can generate some money to be able to do that and be able to ask people, "Hey, do you have, do you want me to help you redo your patio so they can start creating content?"

[31:54] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[31:55] Luis: I've already started to do that. People have already started to hit me up like, "Hey, how much would you charge me to help redo my patio?" I have helped some people. Pero pues tambien tengo que respetar la privacidad de la gente and sometimes they don't wanna appear on social media, right. So they're paying me. So it's like, okay, I'm gonna respect that. You're paying me to redo your patio. I'm not gonna post about it. Right. But because they've seen what I've done with mine that they're like, oh my God, I would love that. So they're willing to pay, but they're not willing to be on camera.

[32:26] So...

[32:27] Paulette: So you're, you're able to produce an income but not content.

[32:30] Luis: Exactly.

[32:31] Paulette: And the goal would be both?

[32:33] Luis: And the goal would be absolutely, the goal would be both.

[32:35] Paulette: I'm looking at your Instagram right now.

[32:37] Luis: Uhhuh.

[32:38] Paulette: You spend more time on TikTok, don't you?

[32:39] Luis: I do, yeah.

[32:41] Paulette: TikTok is fun. I feel like it's, it's easier to find your community on TikTok than it is on Instagram. Instagram still has some like, weird closed garden restrictions.

[32:51] Luis: Yeah, it's so weird. And TikTok has just been amazing. Just the other day, my sister and I went to a local store and then I got a DM a couple hours later and they're like, "were you just at such and such store?" And I was like, oh my God, yes.

[33:04] And then they're like, "oh, we saw you. We wanted to say hi. But we were like, oh my God, it's his day off. Whatever. He's just like doing his thing." And I was like, "oh my God, that is awesome. You should have said hi." Like that would've. That would've boosted my ego so much.

[33:17] Paulette: Right?

[33:18] Luis: But TikTok has been amazing and it's definitely helped me build such an amazing community.

[33:22] Paulette: Well, and some of your community members have been on this show already, Pam.

[33:26] Luis: Yeah, exactly.

[33:27] Paulette: Linda.

[33:27] Luis: Yes, yes. Both of them are amazing.

[33:30] Paulette: They're amazing women. They've made space for me to be able to have these conversations. And people like yourself, having these conversations and showing that podemos vivir la vida más chévere. And it doesn't have to exist within these corporate constructs.

[33:46] Luis: Yes, absolutely. I think, la vida es más chévere when you're true to yourself, when you do follow your dream, when you do follow your heart. And of course those are roads ...this reminds me of, of a poem by Robert Frost, the Road Less Traveled, right?

[34:02] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[34:02] Luis: It's not easy and it's not for everyone. And if you're listening to this and you do work in corporate America, this is not an attack on you clearly, because again, these are roads that are less traveled that are difficult. And not everybody wants to go through that.

[34:17] And that is perfectly fine. That is perfectly fine. But what you do need to learn, I think, is that if you do choose to be in that corporate job, if you, you do choose to work at that customer service job: that you like it, at least. You don't have to love it, but that at least you like it because otherwise you're gonna be living a life of hell.

[34:40] And that is not a way to live. I have an aunt in Mexico who sells quesadillas and she sold quesadillas all her life, but she does it with such joy and she loves it. Le va bien. And she knows every single one of her customers that approach her puesto. So you do what you have to do, but hopefully you are able to do it at least liking it. And that I think should be the goal.

[35:06] Paulette: To be happy with your life?

[35:07] Luis: ¡Para que tengas un vida más chévere!

[35:09] Paulette: Exactly, exactly. And also, if you are stuck in a corporate framework and aren't able to derive the joy out of it, read Linda's book Wealth Warrior and it will help you start taking steps to generate wealth, so you're not dependent on that nine to five.

[35:25] Luis: Exactly.

[35:26] Paulette: Life for the rest of yours.

[35:27] Luis: Exactly. We'll, bill Linda for that plug later.

[35:31] Paulette: She's great. I'm so proud of her.

[35:33] Luis: Did you go to her book signing?

[35:34] Paulette: I was there. I didn't see you. But yeah, there was many hundreds of people.

[35:39] Luis: There were a ton of people. Yeah. That book signing was, I'm so glad I got to experience that. Just being in that room,

[35:46] Paulette: Con los mariachis.

[35:48] Luis: It felt like you were a part of history.

[35:51] Paulette: Yeah.

[35:51] Luis: You were a part of history. You were a part of making a change because Barnes and Nobles was probably not ready for all that.

[35:58] Paulette: She said so! She said as much.

[36:00] Luis: Yeah, she said so. Yeah, you're right. She said so and she fought for her to like have that bigger space. And the bigger space wasn't even enough.

[36:07] Paulette: Nope.

[36:07] Luis: It overflowed. And then I went back to Barnes and Noble's Instagram account and I saw other authors and I was like, oh yeah, you were not ready. You were not ready for all of the like it was beautiful. It was beautiful. It was amazing. And I'm glad that I was able to be in her presence, being able to be in the presence of all of the people that were there. Because it literally took, when they say it takes a village mm-hmm.

[36:32] I was in that village mm-hmm. With all of the people from the village, and that was beautiful.

[36:37] Paulette: I got there and I was like, oh, I hope I see Luis. I don't know if Pam's coming up for this and then like it was a mob.

[36:43] Luis: Yes.

[36:43] Paulette: How many people do you think were there? I estimated on the low end, 200.

[36:47] Luis: I think. Yeah, I, I think 200 people. Yeah, 200 people on the low end, but I left and there was still people arriving, so.

[36:55] Paulette: Oh yeah. I stayed till 10 30 to get my book signed.

[36:58] Luis: No, I, I got, I got there early because I had to leave early as well. And uh, and I got my book signed. I said hi to her and I said, we'll touch base. I know you're super busy. I'm not trying to chitchat here with you. And recorded, did a recap and I loved it.

[37:12] Paulette: Yeah, no, it was amazing. And you know what, her elevating herself that way, elevates all of us.

[37:19] Luis: Exactly.

[37:20] Paulette: The rising tide thing, you know? Absolutely. You get to rise up with the people that you're in community with, or you can drown. I mean, you don't wanna rise up, you can drown.

[37:31] Luis: It sucks. But I do have this theory that nosotros como Latinos, unfortunately, we have the envidoso.

[37:37] Paulette: The crabs in a barrel.

[37:38] Luis: Yeah. The envidoso gene. And we have to check ourselves, you know? Mm-hmm. I have a hashtag, hashtag no seamos envidiosos. We came up with that so that we could remind ourselves to not be envidiosos because it's very easy to, to be envidiosos.

[37:52] Paulette: It is. It is. And you know what, it's a process. Yeah. It's a process that you learn. Absolutely. It's, it's just something that you have to learn, but you have to want to, that's the other thing.

[38:01] Luis: Tambien. You're absolutely right.

[38:03] Paulette: Moving on.

[38:04] Luis: Yes.

[38:05] Paulette: Let's talk about how you don't want kids.

[38:07] Luis: Listen. Los niños me desesperan un chingo. Me desesperan muchísimo. When I first started thinking about going to the university, I was in junior high school and my parents being near newly arrivals to the U S A, of course, they were like, you have to go to school. You have to go to school. Get an education. Get an education. But they couldn't tell me what kind of careers were out there except for for maestro, abogado y doctor. Which which are like the most common, right?

[38:33] Paulette: And some of the hardest.

[38:35] Luis: Some of the hardest. You're absolutely right. So I was like, well, you know, I don't really think I wanna be a doctor. It doesn't really do anything for me. A lawyer, you have to be reading all the time, and I only want to read things that are interesting to me. Not that I have to, right. I have to read in school and it, it's not something that I enjoy.

[38:54] So I thought maybe I want to be a teacher. And when I was in high school, I started interning at like the local library to help teach kids. I started tutoring and I learned that I had no patience for kids whatsoever. No patience. I. Like, I would get kids where I would be like trying to teach 'em math, like grade level kids, right?

[39:15] And I would, I would be like, eh, so if you have five apples and three went away, how many are you left with? And the kids would be like, well, where did they go?

[39:23] Paulette: Oh man.

[39:24] Luis: And I was like, are you serious?

[39:26] Paulette: That inquisitive mind.

[39:29] Luis: Obviously that those little kids are like super smart, right? Because they're thinking outside of the picture, right?

[39:36] Mm-hmm. Like that's beautiful. But to me, I would come home so frustrated and I think that that's when I realized that having kids, it's not something that I feel myself wanting. I think that if it happens, it happens, but it's not something that I want. I think more consciously, it's something that I definitely don't want to be a part of because I don't have the patience.

[39:58] Even my nephew now, like I can only stand him for so long. He's like nine years old, and he's in an age where he's like rebellious and he's too cool for school. And I'm just like, Ugh. And I especially hate when kids speak in this like very chiqueado tone where they're like, ne ne ne ne. Ugh! When my nephew started talking like that, I was like, no! Bajale no vas hablar asi. Habla bien. So I think that there's so many things that bother me about kids that I'm like, I shouldn't have kids. Pero si han llegado a mi vida niños that are what I think in my mind, what kids should be, right? Mm-hmm. That they speak proper. That they're like, oye disculpa te puedo molestar con taca taca ta.

[40:43] Paulette: They have manners.

[40:44] Luis: Yeah. And I think that that has to do with the parenting, right? Yeah. But obviously that can't be easy either, right? To be able to teach your kids to like, have manners speak, right? Blah, blah, blah. But I have bumped into those kids. I have. And when I do bump into those kids, I'm like, ay asi si me gustaría tener un hijo you know? But I also know that it's probably very difficult to be able to get your kid to, to do that.

[41:07] So for that reason, I think that I don't. And my partner wants to have kids, but we have two dogs. And conmigo, all I have to do is like, "Pulgoso bajate de ahi!" Se baja. And my partner will be yelling and screaming and shouting at the poor dog. And the poor dog will not listen to him. And so I'm like, you see, this is why we're never gonna have kids.

[41:30] Because I am not down to be the bad dad all the fucking time.

[41:35] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[41:35] Luis: So you can't even control the dogs. Like I already see if we do have kids, they know that you're the one that they're gonna get away with like everything and anything. And I'm gonna be the bad dad. And I don't want to do that. I don't want to be that.

[41:48] So, yeah. So to me, kids are not something that is up there on my, you know, accomplishment list.

[41:56] Paulette: And more power to you for recognizing that and saying it out loud. Especially for us Latinos and Latines, that there's that expectation. And now, you know, it used to be like, oh, you're gay. You don't have to have, you're not gonna have kids, right?

[42:11] Like, no.

[42:11] Luis: Yeah.

[42:12] Paulette: Y entonces. I mean, now there's no barrier to that. There shouldn't be. I mean, in some people's minds there is, but fuck them. And so, yes, you are still open to those bingos. It's like, well, ¿cuando? ¿Y cuantos?

[42:25] Luis: Yeah. You know, my family doesn't say ¿cuando? They don't, because I think in their mind, they probably are thinking they're not gonna have kids, right?

[42:33] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[42:33] Luis: That's probably very, very true. But for me, I just feel that there's so many things that have to align in order for me to even consider the possibility. And it just like, there's just so many, so many, so many, so many, so many things. So, I think for me it's not an important thing. It's not gonna break me or make me it, it's just not.

[43:00] But for example, like I do have this conversation with my sister who's gonna turn 30. She went with me to Mexico. But before that, a week before that, she went out with her high school friends and all of them have kids that are eight years old, nine years old. And she came back and she was very bummed. And she was like, "you know, the conversation was different. Their kids are now older, they're young moms. And now I'm thinking in my head..."

[43:25] Like she really got in her head about like, what if I'm not a young mom? Like como que si ya mañana se le acaba el mundo. I was like, "listen, first of all, of course they're gonna have a different conversation because now their life is devoted to their child."

[43:39] Paulette: Right.

[43:40] Luis: "You know, I'm sure that when you were talking and when you were saying things, they were probably like also jealous. Because they didn't get to live their joventud. Out of all of them, you're the only one that went off to college. You're the only one that has a career. You're the only one that like doesn't have kids and can get up and go at any time. Like you're going to Mexico next week for a whole five days. People who have kids can't always necessarily do that."

[44:03] So I think that society also needs to take a chill pill in regards to how they say things like, If you get married, so when are you guys having children? Like that's not your business. You don't know that maybe they've been married for 1, 2, 3 years and they still don't have children because one, they choose not to, which is great.

[44:24] Two, how do you know that maybe they can't have children and now you're putting this burden on them and making them feel like shit. It's none of your business. Like, are you going to¿mantener a estra criatura? Are you going to help them fucking babysit? It's none of your business, so you shouldn't put that burden on these people.

[44:42] So I think our society is at fault for many people having children and thinking that they wanna have children. When in reality, listen, my sister came back so rejuvenated. Meaning she was like, "I'm glad I was able to do this. I know that I would not have been able to do this with children." My younger brother couldn't come with us because he has his child and he couldn't find somebody to babysit him and you know, whatever.

[45:05] And neither or is better than the other. We just need to learn to respect our decisions and our choices.

[45:13] Paulette: Thank you. Thank you. That's all I think that people who don't want children are asking for,

[45:18] Luis: Right.

[45:19] Paulette: You don't hate kids. You are annoyed by some, but we're not opposite ends of an argument. We're all on the same side of wanting the populace to be aware, educated, happy in their lives, even if they make unconventional choices.

[45:37] I think that if more people recognize that, hi, we're all on the same side, we're all on the same side, we're all on this planet together, there would be less tension around that.

[45:47] Luis: Right.

[45:47] Paulette: And your sister wouldn't have to be made to feel bad that she is 30 years old with a thriving career in a thriving life, but something's missing because she's not like her friends. Who made different choices.

[45:59] Luis: Correct.

[46:00] Paulette: Hey, hey, here's that trigger warning I told you about. Self-harm will be mentioned momentarily and if that's not something you want in your ear holes right now, that's totally cool. Skip ahead about a minute, 45 seconds from right now.

[46:14] Luis: It's important to be aware of this because recently last, right before I left on vacation, a really good friend of mine confessed to me that, that they don't want to have children. And my reaction was, "Congratulations. I am happy for you. I am happy for you. I know that this decision wasn't easy because society teaches us otherwise, but I am so happy for you. I am so glad that you were able to say, I am making this decision of not having children and güey, that is beautiful."

[46:49] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[46:50] Luis: And she nearly cried because she was like, this is the first reaction I get like this. Everyone else, every other close friends is, are you sure?

[47:00] Paulette: Ay yi yi.

[47:01] Luis: You know? And it's like, güey, it's not like she's saying I'm gonna commit suicide.

[47:05] Paulette: Ay yai yai.

[47:06] Luis: You, you know? Like,

[47:07] Paulette: No, it's not the same thing.

[47:09] Luis: It's not the same thing. Right? So why are you asking you, are you sure? Are you sure you want to live or die? Like, no.

[47:14] Paulette: And, and here's the thing. The reverse is never asked. You know, what if we turned that around on people with the pregnancy announcement?

[47:21] "Are you sure? Are you sure you wanna do that?"

[47:24] Luis: Another one? Yeah. Right. You don't have enough. ¿Con estos tres que tienes?

[47:30] Paulette: But our society normalizes the idea that yeah, the more the merrier. Turn your friend onto this podcast.

[47:38] Luis: Yes.

[47:39] Paulette: I have lots of people she can take examples from of lives that are thriving. I love that word, thriving.

[47:45] Luis: Yes.

[47:45] Paulette: I use it every single episode. Porque una vida más chévere, it's about the choices you make. And if she needs support and she needs to help find community around that, we're here for her.

[47:55] Luis: Gracias, I will definitely turn her onto the podcast for sure.

[48:00] Paulette: Luis, is there anything else you would like to share with us? You have been a font of wisdom today around DIY, around living your best life, around setting up a life that, that you can be proud, of about the struggles.

[48:13] Thank you for being honest about that, about the struggles that you faced. Because I think a lot of what people show of their lives to the public is just the cl, the clean and pretty parts.

[48:24] Luis: The clean and the, yeah, absolutely. Well, first of all, thank you for inviting me on your podcast. I know that I'm the second male or male identifying person on this podcast, and I really appreciate that because, I know that as a podcaster you have a vision, right?

[48:38] And so I'm honored that you would think that your audience would enjoy having me on. Entonces por eso Paulette, muchísimas gracias I really, really appreciate it. De todo corazon. And, and thank you. Thank you, thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

[48:54] Paulette: You're welcome.

[48:54] Luis: Don't take your space for granted. I don't take this space for granted, and I'm, I'm, I'm really, really happy that I'm on here.

[49:00] Um, if there is, one last and final piece of advice is that life is too short. Life is too short and do what pleases you and the road to get there may not always be the easiest. It may take you a year, two years. For some people it takes seconds to blow up and, and, and be what they want to be. But that doesn't mean that you can't get there.

[49:27] It doesn't matter your age. I am going to be turning 41 years old this year, and I still feel as young as when I started working at 17 years old. I'm still full of ideas and it's not always gonna be easy. Because you have society to help you bring you down, and you have society to help remind you that what you're doing is wrong and that what you're doing you should have done when you were younger.

[49:50] But it is never too late, and I have seen it happen with older folks, and so as long as you have your health, that's all that matters. Because without your health, you're not going to be able to do anything. So have your health. As long as you have that, then you're able to accomplish everything and anything that you want.

[50:12] It's never too late. If you're listening to this podcast and you're like, pero pues ya ahorita a esta edad, I don't even know how to use social media. It doesn't matter. Start somewhere. Start somewhere. Just take that first step because cuando te mueres, or when you are agonizing or thinking you're gonna die, or you're on that deathbed, you're really gonna die, not because of the old age, not because of that enfermedad, that terminal disease.

[50:42] What's gonna die first is your soul. And what's gonna happen is you're gonna think back through your life and you're gonna be like, I should have kissed that boy. I should have asked this. I should have jumped off that cliff. I should have, et cetera, et cetera. So don't allow that moment when you come to the end of your life for you to start thinking of everything that you could have done when you were alive and well.

[51:09] Do that now. Take that risk. And when you're listening to this episode, take a risk right now when you're done listening to this, whatever that risk may be. It doesn't have to be big. I'm not saying go fucking bungee jump or go skydive or go take a travel, you know, across Europe, or, no, I'm not saying that.

[51:27] I'm saying let's start small. So when you go through that drive-through, or you go to that restaurant and you think somebody's cute, go and tell them. Or you love their nails, or you love their earrings, or you love what they're wearing, let them know, "Hey, I love how this looks on you. It looks beautiful!" Because you're gonna make their day.

[51:47] That is gonna be the beginning of you taking risks, because I promise you, you are probably one of those persons that only thinks about it and doesn't do it. And if you're that person, just start doing. Take that small step. It's gonna feel amazing.

[51:59] Paulette: Take that risk.

[52:01] Luis: Take that risk.

[52:02] Paulette: Take that risk. Oh my God, we just found the title for this episode.

[52:05] Luis: Take that risk.

[52:07] Paulette: Take that risk! Oh my God. Luis, thank you so much for everything you just said. I'm looking forward to what you've got coming out and supporting your journey into having your own television show. Not letting them clip your wings, letting you be as colorful and as beautiful as you are right now.

[52:26] Luis: Gracias.

[52:27] Paulette: And only getting better at that. So you know how we end the show.

[52:32] Luis: Yes. And I'm excited to say this. Thank you so much for having me. And that is a burrito!

[52:39] Paulette: Do you got something to say about this week's episode? DM me on Instagram at Paulette Erato. And if you'd like to be a guest on La Vida Más Chévere, check out the guest form on my website at Paulette Erato dot com.

[52:51] All of these links are in the show notes. While you're at it, can I ask you a favor? I'd really appreciate your helping spread awareness about the podcast. So could you please share it on your socials or even send it to a friend? New episodes come out every other Tuesday. You can enjoy them with tacos or burritos.

[53:07] Muchísimas gracias for your support, y hasta la próxima vez, ¡cuidate bien!

How DI Güey evolved
What's next in Luis' career?
Almost meeting a TikTok fan
On being childfree
Trigger warning
Final words of wisdom
Want to be on the podcast?

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