Seen around Lincoln Heights

One thing I always liked about LH is the ingenuity you see when it comes to being creative with very little resources.  This is one prime example. I saw it outside of the local Lincoln Heights Library. Furry & complete with huge plastic skull to scare off cholo ghosts, probably.  I’m sure this cost about less than $10 to decorate but priceless when it comes to badassness.  I was going to wait to see who was the owner, so that I can take a picture of this bike with her/him, but alas I had to go.

Another photo after the jump.

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Sunday mornings in Lincoln Heights

I woke up this morning to hear my neighbor blasting Cumbia del Rio from his truck and I told myself “Ah, another beautiful morning in Lincoln Heights!”

Back when I first moved to my street, I lived next door to a three house complex of paisas and their cholillo kids. I knew some of them previously as they used to be my neighbors on the street I had moved from a few blocks over. (In Lincoln Heights this is totally common for rental residents to move around to different blocks and inevitably you end up next to be people you left behind). Anyways, this was back in the mid 90s and like all good paisas, they had a massive sound system in their truck which they would blast every Sunday morning (the sound mingling with my other neighbor’s roosters.) I loved this auditory wake up call but what I couldn’t understand was why the singer they kept listening to had such an awful voice. I would go around mimicking it because it sounded so out of tune and nasal-y. Eventually, the bad singing grew on me and I became to find it kinda charming. Guess who that singer was? The infamous Chalino Sanchez.

Las Nieves de Enero-Chalino Sanchez

Have a great Sunday!

Decent article on Chalino Sanchez by LA Weekly.
First part of article here.
(Thanks, Soledad en Masa!)

Dear Gato 103.1

Dear Gato 103.1,

Is it true? Are you really gonna play cumbias? Because lots of stations have said they were and ended up in a funky morass of Durangense and Marco Antonio Solis.

There are a few tears for the former station that came before you, perhaps it’s because those folks haven’t really learned to appreciate the beauty and the glory of what’s called (in English) Mexican Regional Music but what we call Norteñas, Rancheras, Banda, Corridos, Cumbias and yes, even Duranguense.

I promise to love you Gatito if you play my two favorite songs on Los Angeles radio at the moment:

Los Picadientes de Caborca – La Cumbia del Río

Banda MS – EL Mechon

Con Mucho Cariño,

Links to the real videos (embedding disabled, how dare they?). La Cumbia del Río is one you should especially check out as it shows real Los Angeles residents dancing about their places of employment in a humorous and entertaining way!

Los Pikadientes De Caborca – La Cumbia Del Río

Banda MS – El Mechon

Yes, Los Angeles Has Spanish Speakers

There’s been lots of mentions on various blogs about the demise of Indie 103.1, purportedly a source for awesome independent non-corporate music. Maybe that was true, but I didn’t listen to that station so I’ll have to take them at their word. But since the corporation that gave you said Indie station is only changing the format and language, I’m pretty sure it was kinda corporate and will continue to be corporate, only this time in a language some people in Los Angeles can’t understand.

If I really liked this “indie” format, I’d probably be sad too. But as I’ve noticed when it’s happened before, there seems to be an additional undercurrent of loathing for the transition from English to Spanish, as if they could tolerate any other insipid music better if it was only in a language they could understand. Kinda like they lost one for the team. As some guy mentions:

“Yeah, because what LA desperately needs is another Latin station. Thank you, Clear Channel, for being so fucking awesome!”

Sorry for your loss ese, but damn, we are part of LA too, you know. A pretty big part, as our corporate overlords have noticed. I can understand crap music in two languages so I know that the problem with bad music is the corporate/money model and not the lengua it’s in, that’s just the way the beast works.  Plus, let’s not lose the forest for the trees: you do realize that El Gato is supposedly going to be playing cumbias? I really doubt they’ll keep to that but that should be a salve for the Spanish wound. Err, you all like cumbias, right?

Now if only they could turn KROQ into a 24 hour station for Los Originales de San Juan, then 2009 could safely be declared a perfect year!

PS. The picture above has nothing to do with anything.

The calm before the storm


Before the Gold Line extension opens, we must ensure we have transportation to infiltrate the enemy. We have expertly placed troops throughout various points in the Westside, always vigilant. However, we need more troops in the Westside to relieve some of the stress on our exiled troops. The Eastside and allied neighborhoods are some of the densest in the United States and we can afford to send more out west. Let’s call it Manifest Destiny.

We can encircle Silver Lake (two words, cabrones! If you live in the neighborhood, learn to spell it! I’ve seen way too many write it as Silverlake), but we have to move people over the Westside as quickly as possible. With no direct train out west past Western (unless you go northwest to Hollywood) and the 20/720/920 packed as ever on Wilshire, we must use our horseless carriages, especially for reconnaisance. If you’re not a member of Midnight Ridazz 2 or a paisa on a bici to work, you shouldn’t be on a bike over there for fear of being followed by the Neighborhood Jura. Even if you’re a paisa on your bici to work, ¡aguas!

I present to you the avant garde and fastest way to transport large numbers of people: the car trunk kept down with rope. Riding in trunks is no longer something you do when you’re drunk/high/desmadroso or to make it past Oceanside to Orange County. with this new technology, it will be a snap to release those in the trunk, just use a scissor or knife to cut the rope and BAM! you’re out! With a number of old Lincoln Town Cars/Ford Crown Victorias/Chevy Caprice, the Eastside will infiltrate the Westside with relative ease.

With enough Eastsiders/sympathizers in the Westside, we could hotwire their Prius’s GPS to talk like this:

This post was an excuse to use that picture. With La Crisis on us, people just can’t afford to drive to a junkyard and get a lock for their car. Sometimes the easiest way out is the best way out.

Otomi ~ Japanese Food in Boyle Heights ~

I have loved Japanese culture ever since my mind was warped by The G-Force, Astro Boy, Dragon Ball Z, Pokemon and of course The Power Rangers..… Laugh it up all you want….Ok so that childhood love kept growing and I love Japanese food, except sushi. Don’t know why, just don’t ok. Anyway, Japanese is delicious and I love that it’s so close to home. I use to go to Little Tokyo, but then me puse las pilas and I remembered about Otomi.

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Botanitas: January 13, 2009

Carpool lane entrance closed on the eastbound 10 freeway. When did that happen?

Botanitas is an ongoing feature bringing you stories and news from various sources, upcoming events and other bits of ephemera that might be of interest to LA Eastside readers. Suggestions welcome!

Click below for the year’s first edition of Botanitas: info on jobs, health, and other stuff that you may or may not find to be helpful.

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Mas Revolucion!

Official Message from Department of Homeboy SecurityNorth Eastern Division, to the Eastside Front
This Latest Communiqué from the Headshopquarters of General Chavo!
→All Troops to Remain on Brown Alert!

  • Warm up the Armored Taco Trucks!
  • Alert the Fundamentalist Eastside Radical group “The Tacoban” (AL Pastor is Great!)
  • Load the Elote Launchers!
  • Confirm enemy spy sighting rumors- (Huell Howser)
  • Beware of infiltration by over-rated Westside Street art! (Shepard Fairy)
  • Lindsay Lohan sightings
  • Confirm rumors that someone has asked if the Tortilla Chips are “Organic” at El Mercado on First Street.
  • Aprehend any persons working on their Laptops while sitting in the patio at “El Tepeyac

In case of enemy invasion=retreat to the secret caves located in the Montebello & Rose Hills! General Chavo is to be Frozen Cryogenetically as a Giant Paleta de Nués to be thawed out at a future date!
Please Report immediately to command post if you observe any of the following suspicious activities taking place in the Eastside!:

  • Increased number of Dog Walkers on the Eastside and purebred doggy poop landmines
  • Sightings of baby strollers costing more than $9.99
  • 2 year olds wearing designer Dr. Marten’s shoes
  • Ask for Identification of anyone wearing a Tommy Bahama shirt
  • The opening of one-word named boutiques
  • Be suspicious of anything with the faux distressed look (highly redundant to E.L.A.)
  • If you are captured, eat this message cooked in a spicy Mole Poblano Sauce!End Message