4/5/2006 HOUSTON (Editorial by Adrian Gonzales) -- Traveling through Houston yesterday, it became apparent to me just how diverse Houston is. America was supposed to be the melting pot. Everyone was to come to America and blend and share and become one individual. I don't think it ever really worked like that. Cities like Los Angeles, New York and Chicago are all divided. But Houston, now, Houston is blended. Sure, we've got our divisions, our boundaries, but overall, we're pretty well integrated. Our blending is just not in the originally planned homogeneous way.

This realization slowly dawned on me as I was standing in line. Two (unacquainted) Nigerian men started up a conversation in line in their native tongue, the woman behind me was in a conversation in Spanish on her cell and the woman behind the counter could handle all of the accents.

Then later as I sat in a Whataburger and watched the Hispanic cashier discuss (partially in Spanish) the African-American customer's request with the Middle Eastern manager and Asian co-worker.

Wow, if that's not cultural blending, I just don't know what is. As a city culture, we're amazing. We never integrated into one unified culture, we just learned to share in each others' cultures. Houston learned to live as who we are, hold on to our culture, but share in and work with everyone else's.

(Editorial by Adrian Gonzales)