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U.S. Census Gets 'Telenovela' Role

By Ed O'Keefe

The Post's David Montgomery reports:

In just a matter of months, lovely, dark-eyed Perla Beltrán has suffered the usual trials of a telenovela babe -- pole-dancing in a dive bar, falling in love with a hunky gangster, learning of said gangster's untimely (bang! bang!) death minutes after delivering his baby, giving the infant boy up for adoption, getting him back from adoption, helping a new boyfriend elude police . . .

Whew.

Michelle Vargas
Actress Michelle Vargas sells empanadas to a Census Bureau recruiter and learns how to apply for a job with the Census. (Telemundo)

On Wednesday night, in her popular Spanish-language soap opera, Perla's luck will change. Working at her father's outdoor empanada stand, she'll seize a chance to turn her life around. In a plot twist almost as surprising as the local crime boss falling in love with a transgendered prostitute, Perla's shot at personal salvation will come courtesy of an unusual hero: the U.S. Census Bureau.

Perla -- a secondary character in Telemundo's top telenovela, "Más Sabe el Diablo" ("The Devil Knows Best") -- is going to get a job recruiting folks from her New York City neighborhood to participate in the 2010 Census so Latinos won't be undercounted, as they have been in the past.

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By Ed O'Keefe  | October 7, 2009; 10:00 AM ET
Categories:  Census  
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