We were driving thru the Westside today, somewhere along the border of Silver Lake and Echo Park, when we thought we saw something stupid headed our way. Sure enough, and cuz I had my camera handy, we were able to take a picture of some innocent dolt dressing up as a Mexican captain of sorts on his way to some shitty place to drink his shitty Tecate beers. Oh yeah, it’s Drinko de Mayo! We of the Chicano variety are not so learnededed on this American holiday so we decided to seek out an experience. Might as well get to know the Ethnic people that live in your city and figure out why they do the things they do.
I’d heard rumors oh for many, many years that at long last another issue of SSP would see the light of day. I didn’t believe it, and still don’t, but CT is so convinced of its resurrection that there is an actual “Publication Release” planned for Saturday, March 9th 2013 at 8pm over at Espacio 1839 in Boyle Heights. Seeing is believing buddy. Notice it doesn’t say Release Party? I did. O pues.
If you don’t know, Sal Si Puedes is one of the best literary magazines to come out of the Eastside. I did a review of issue #3 waaaaayyy back in 2005, you should go read it.
See, doesn’t that sound interesting? It might take another decade for the next issue to come out so if I were you I’d hurry in to get my copy. The going rate is $10 but if you mention that you heard about it on LA Eastside, CT will let you have it for $9.99 and will throw in a free knock-knock joke. Yer welcome!
Where were we? It seems like a bit of time since we last spoke. I thought it was a few weeks, maybe a month or two (tops!) but it turns out this lil’ site that couldn’t has been down for more than a year. Oh well, shit happens. Mostly it was a bunch of stupid spambots and viruses, lots of digital cleanup to do, but there was also the chance that we were going to go full throttle and GET A NEW THEME! PUNCH IT UP A BIT! GET BACK IN THE GAME! but sadly the writing was on the wall. Or wasn’t actually. Posting was getting scarce, many of the LAE participants were doing other things, and who has time for blogs anymore anyways?
We did this for fun and to bring some attention to some of the (still) overlooked communities in our metropolis. It was also to counter the crush of new LA residents jumping off the turnip truck and declaring anything East of the beach communities as “Eastside”, an erasure of history some of us found unacceptable. Since most of us were either students or workers the demands of this miserable world constantly increased taking away what little disposable time we had for posting stuff on a blog. Besides, life is elsewhere.
I didn’t want to pull an LA City Nerd and deny access to some useful posts, so I finally got the site back up so you can go back and see some of the smart, thoughtful, and incisive commentary we contributed to the discussion of our city. As well as all the silly, controversial, crass, and pointed articles that were probably even more important. There might be some new posts happening at some point since there is still much to say, and not many people are saying the things that need to be said, but the LA Eastside you once knew is no more. Pour one for the homies.
In conclusion: the site is up, it is no longer the same, only the cards know what is to come.
So the official encampment of OccupyLA has come & gone. And the bail has been set at an exorbitant, but unsurprising $5,000. La Opinion informs us that some people have set-up shop down the street at la Placita Olvera, and the HuffPost says that some “occupiers” tried to reconvene at the Corn Fields but were pretty quickly rebuffed by the LAPD.
As many have mentioned, the eviction flew in the face of a pending court injunction to stall the eviction (though the judge later ruled it “meaningless”). Since I am never surprised that politicians, bankers, and other powerful actors in our society use the law solely for their benefit, itdoes surprise me when others are surprised:
8:21 pm, Lucero: [INTRODUCES OUR 'SOLIDARITY CLAP']. We are Occupy LA and our First Amendment rights are being trampled on and that’s what we are standing up for. [Occupy LA "minutes," source]
Chicano Studies Research Center (CSRC) of UCLA is holding its first “Undocumented Event”
In conjunction with the ongoing L.A. Xicano exhibitions, CSRC will hold “Undocumented Event No. 1” on Friday, December 2, 3:00–8:00 p.m., at the Boyle Heights Farmers Market. Coproduced by the Mobile Mural Lab, an art space on wheels created by Los Angeles-based artists to foster dialogue and engage the community around matters of public art, this free public event will focus on muralism in Los Angeles. Artists will be on hand to discuss the history of muralism, its role in community development, and the L.A. City Council’s mural moratorium, which was instituted in 2002 but is currently under review. The Mobile Mural Lab will offer outdoor video screenings and a mini-exhibition, and attendees can record their comments on the truck’s exterior—a portable mural space. The Boyle Heights Farmers Market is located on Bailey Street at East 1st Street , near Mariachi Plaza .
The Undocumented Event series will continue with pop-up events and activities. Each will be different in nature, involving community members and Chicano artists in varied capacities and covering a range of themes, including paper fashion, music, muralism, and other visual arts. The events will take place at public sites throughout Los Angeles through February 26, 2012.
Don’t miss the next Undocumented Event — Friend CSRC and L.A. Xicano on Facebook!
Sinceras is a great zine coming outta East L.A./Monterey Park for the last few months now. They just recently put out issue #5, and they’re still going strong. They describe themselves as “a Los Angeles based collective organizing in a movement toward conscious living, creative freedom, unity & action. We organize music/art events and publish a zine; it is an outlet for Artists, Writers and Activists.”
I’ve met folks who work on the zine, but I forget who they are until I run into them, and I’m all like “hey !! wazz up?” (Sticking my tongue out, like in those old budwieser commercials) all awkwardly, but it’s cool cause we don’t remember each others names or when we first met, but we recognize each others faces, you know?
Anyway, just wanted to share it, since alotta folks contributing/reading this bloggito here, come from the school of DIY punk rock zines. The zine itself features everything from original poetry/art to articles about healthy eating and living, all from local folks and East L.A. College students. (That’s probably where I’ve met all these folks!! Duh pendejo!!) I also really dig the fact that they put it up online for folks to read and share, but sometimes I still prefer the physical copy
They’re always looking for folks to contribute, so get at them at Sinc...@gmail.com and you can also keep up with them through their facebook page. You can check out pics from release parties, get updates and find out when the next zine is coming out.
As a 20-year-old coed at UCSD the newness of each day as an adventure, still had its momentum. The first female in my family to go to college, to move out at 18-years-old was at once my second-generation-immigrant family’s dream and nightmare. My first year of away-from-home loneliness was defeated by my freedom. I sucked it up, and watched other ingénues file out one by one—until there was 1 Chicana for every 17 Chicanos in my class of 100 in a sea of 7000 students. Freedom meant learning to think and speak critically, handling finances, self-management, validating my culture, being creative, making wise choices, defining myself and not appearing to have been too sheltered by my Christian-freak family.
Being away from family also gave the freedom to live completely bacchanalian, if one chose it. It was an undergraduate rite of passage “to thy own-self be true” and part of the experience needed on the road to where you were headed. By the time some of my high school friends became freshmen, I was their mentor and resolver of all acculturating problems.
I’m not sure how the situation came about–my high school friend Danny taunting me into asking Jose a 22-year old senior to buy us beer, because we were too young. I was uncomfortable, knowing that I would owe Jose some favor that I could not pay back—because he was obviously interested in me. The night ride down Torrey Pines Road in the back of a dark VW bus with Jose and my napping, assigned-sentry Raul, with John as shot-gun and Danny driving, seemed excruciatingly long. Occasionally Danny would pull back the blue Hawaiian print curtain that divided the cab from the carpeted surf den to say, “Is everything ok back there?” followed by a wink and grin at me. He knew I went reluctantly and this was his silly gesture to make light of it, while protecting my honor. Continue reading →
Victor Palafox is a 19 year old, undocumented resident of Alabama, pre/post HB 56. He was interviewed by dreamers adrift, a collective that documentes the undocumented, in Dallas, Texas a few weeks ago. In this candid interview, Victor describes what it’s like to live in the south, what it means to be undocumented there, how the community has changed for the worse and what the future holds.
From left Blu (Xavi Moreno) and Lunatico (Phillip Garcia) Photography by Graham Kolbeins
Through an amalgamation of poetic proses and bits of Caló, Virginia Grise’s play “Blu,” conveys a romanticized view of the life and times of a family living in the barrio. Following the story of a queer Chicana/o mother, that despite their best efforts to keep her family together, is challenged at every turn by the every day violence that manifest itself through gang life, police abuse, the prison industrial complex, militarism and the continued abuse toward women of color. It’s hard no to feel bombarded and lost for split second, when trying to deciphering the multiple themes in the story. Which slows down the momentum of the play at times. Continue reading →