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The Latina Book Club welcomes Philip D. Rivera. 

With an electric blue luchador mask wrapped tightly around his head, accenting his fierce eyes and flashing smile, and shrouding the rest of his face, this Suburban Luchador shares hilarious anecdotes about his wife’s pregnant cravings, the kids’ potty training, and puppy love at the local school where he teaches. We are eager for the sequel! 

What lessons did the Suburban Luchador learn from 2020? 
Philip: 2020 taught me what is really important in life: my Christian faith, my family, my friends and my health. Many other things vied for my attention, but the pandemic really made me reflect on what brings me true happiness. Spending so much time with my wife and kids was a blessing (sometimes in disguise), and the memories we made will last a lifetime.

You are also a High School teacher. How are you surviving remote learning? How did you help your students get over not having a senior trip or prom or even graduation?
In my house, remote learning was like taking a big tent, 3-ring circus, and jamming into a small apartment. I have two school-age children (K and 2nd grade) and two non-school-age children (4-month-old and 3-year-old) who all have very different needs... All. At. Once. My amazing wife does part-time homeschool with them, so she was used to this balancing act. I, on the other hand, only heard her war stories. During remote learning, I hid away in whatever room offered the least chaos and did online/phone teaching. The background music to my tutoring phone calls was a mixture of baby cries, kindergarten songs, and phonics chants. It's a wonder I helped any student! As far as school events like prom or graduation, prom was cancelled, and graduation was done via a drive-thru celebration. It was unfortunate that the class of 2020 didn't have the usual senior fanfare, but this was the standard across the country.

You always have funny stories to share. Was it hard last year to keep everyone and your spirits up? 
Philip: I love being around my family! They inspire most of my stories, so quarantine life offered lots of humorous scenarios. Being in close quarters, 12+ hours a day with your wife and kids fluctuated between a sitcom, a soap opera, and a survival reality show. I'm not sure what it was like for the pilgrim families on the Mayflower, but I'm sure it was similar. They probably wrote lots of funny books, too. But then they probably used them as fuel for fire to survive the frigid welcome to the Promised Land. 

What are some of your fun goals for the New Year?
Florida has returned to some normalcy, so our castaway quarantine phase is hopefully over. My goals are to create fun/insightful content for parents via my brief Instagram TV episodes called #BabyWearingChronicles (Follow me on IG account @philipdrivera). I also hope to explore new restaurants with my wife, and go on monthly "date days" with my three older kids.

Is there a new Suburban Luchador edition in our future?
Yes! I'm over halfway done with the sequel of SUBURBAN LUCHADOR: The Cul-de-Sac Chronicles. I've learned a lot as an indie author after the publishing of my first book, so I hope the second book is an improved version. It will be longer and have fuller stories with the same dry wit and whimsical imagination everyone can connect to.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Philip Rivera is the grown-up version of Calvin, from Calvin and Hobbes, who moved to the suburbs, got married, and bought a minivan. He’s a follower of Jesus, author, family man, teacher and suburban visionary who sees adventure in life’s mundane moments. His first book, SUBURBAN LUCHADOR: The Cul-de-Sac Chronicles, is a collection of humorous stories and observations about everyday life in suburbia. His writings ranges from comments on Dollar Tree’s attempt to sell sirloin steak to embarking on a midnight adventure to find corn muffins for his pregnant wife. He reminds us that adulthood does not have to kill imagination. Visit his website at and follow his daily suburban struggle on Facebook and Instagram.

Facebook: @authorphiliprivera
Instagram: @philipdrivera