Spokes & Words Back to School Ride

With summer  at an end and school starting up again for students, this ride is dedicated against all the bullshit everyone has to put up with in the institutionalized educational system. After all, all we wanted was a Pepsi.

Join up with the Spokes & Words riders as we share poetry, words and stories at Self Help Graphics, Cal State L.A., East L.A. College, Salazar Park ending the ride at Corazon del Pueblo.

Meet up at Maricahi Plaza on First and Boyle at 6:30 and ride out at 7 p.m.  this Thursday.

Make sure you also “like”” the official Spokes & Words facebook page to stay up to date on rides and connect with fellow riders.



Here is the google maps link to the bike route

Rumor has it…

What would any community be without its chisme, rumors and drama?
One of the latest rumors that is circulating and getting folks itchy has to do with fleas.

Heard at a recent poetry reading, all names will be avoided in typical rumor fashion, someone took the mic and said that their friend was in the hospital fighting Typhus. Being that typhus is rare these days, doctors traced the disease to fleas from dogs that came from the Midwest, and who is coming to Echo Park from the Midwest? That’s right, hipsters.

So be trucha with your self and pets when in Echo Park, especially if you see hipsters with their pets. I just heard. Anyone else hear about this? This is a public health issue.

100 Years of Food & Revolution

Self Help Graphics & Art begins celebrating the 100 year anniversary of the Mexican Revolution with a dialogue, art, performance, pan dulce y chocolate!

Saturday, September 18, A free screening of Like Water for Chocolate/Como Agua Para Chocolate at 5pm, where delicious Mexican cooking and La Revolución fuse into mood enhancing cuisine. read more The film screening is followed at 7pm with light refreshments of pan dulce y chocolate and a short talk with CSULA History & Latin American Studies teacher Enrique C. Ochoa, whose main focus are issues of power & culture in the tortilla industry and revolución.  He is the author of Feeding Mexico: The Political Uses of Food Since 1910.

After, please stay and enjoy the fiber exhibit of 100 Years of  Food & Revolution until 11pm. The exhibit artists are:  Leslie Gutierrez Saiz, Poli Marichal, Victoria Delgadillo & Yolanda Gonzalez.  This collection of art celebrates the Mexican Revolution Centennial and acts of revolution in and out of the kitchen.  The 100 Years of Food & Revolution exhibit runs from September 14 to October 15.  Come feed your mind and your soul.

Tuesday September 21, catch an interview (en Español) of 100 years of Food & Revolution co-curator Victoria Delgadillo,  Artist Poli Marichal and Erendira Bernal of Border Corps on Radio Insurgencia Femenina, 9pm to 9:30pm,  KPFK 90.7 FM.
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LA to Host Lamest Grito Ever

A reventar!

So you thought you were going to check out the Grito downtown tonight, like you do every couple of years in front of city hall, eh? I sure did. But you forgot that this is the city that thrives on terrible ideas, replacing simple traditions with stupid media events that nobody can enjoy. That’s what’s happening today, the lil’ celebration to mark Mexico’s Independence has been moved to something called the “Nokia Plaza” in the totalitarian wet dream of developers known ridiculously as “LA Live”. A public event moved to private property.

Oh, and you thought you could just show up asi nomas? Ja ja, pero que menso eres! Nope, you have to buy tickets for a show of Los Temerarios, or you can go today to the Mexican Consul to get some wristbands. Because, you know, you don’t have to work or anything.

I’m not at all surprised by this selling out of our Grito tradition, but is anyone else as pissed as I am?

Screw that business, I suggest you go to Huntington Park instead.

The Patriots of Ciudad Juarez

As most of you know, I am an art activist regarding the femicides in Ciudad Juarez. After a caravan to and 3 day protest in Ciudad Juarez in early 2002, I came back to LA with a fervor for creating art and inviting others to join me in this dialogue—but mostly my choice of art as an activist tool was out of desperation to help in whatever way I could.

I have met many revolucionarias and revolutionarios on this long-ass, no-light-at-the-end- of-the-tunnel road. Many of the activists I have met are victim mothers and artists (like me) that dedicate many of their hours trying to figure out how to end these seemingly senseless murders through our words, our research, our writings, our appeals, our pleas, and our diligence not to forget these families. Its one step forward and one step back most times.

My friend and El Paso Times reporter Diana Washington Valdez (who I have mentioned many times on LAeastside) sent me a copy of her recent article for the newspaper. This week, which should be the most joyous and celebratory time for all Mexicans everywhere, because its the 100th anniversary of the 1910 Mexican Revolution—comes with a morbid reminder that drugs and power fuel the dark forces. They are the killers of any ray of hope and fairness in the world.
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Bacon wrapped hot dog official L.A. hot dog ?

So let me get this straight, for years the city has fought tooth and nail to condemn these culinary chimeras because of health and safety reasons. Some of the reasons behind this are that the vendors aren’t licensed and governed by the health department, their grills are not safe to cook on and because you can’t be grilling out in the open, they are undermining businesses that pay all kinds of taxes and taking away their business and because it’s just against the law. blah, blah, blah, blah it’s the same rhetoric over and over again. Well, Farmer John is funding a campaign to make the Bacon Wrapped Hot Dog THE OFFICIAL HOT DOG of L.A. Hmm … I’m not sure how this is gonna work, but for every vote they donate a pound of food to a food bank, so I guess that’s a good thing. If the hot dog does become official, I guess we’ll see a “gourmet” lunch truck selling them pretty soon, offering organic hot dogs with bacon. I haven’t been to the art walk in a while, maybe there’s already one out there, who knows. But what I do know is that this isn’t gonna happen and the bacon wrapped hot dog will remain the UNOFFICIAL hot dog of L.A. If the city makes this legit, then they’re full of shit, more so than they already are. It’s just another chapter in the story of how L.A. loves, hates, loves street vendors. Give us your delicious food so when can condemn you later for selling it.

Zapata’s Horse ready to get down in LA!!!

Multiple sightings of Zapatas horse dressed to the nines in Lincoln Park.  100 years riding and still going strong!

Since Zapata’s horse magically escaped when Zapata was assassinated in Chinameca, Morelia in 1919, witnesses have announced sightings of this legendary horse throughout Mexico. Recent sightings have occurred this morning in Lincoln Heights, just before the Mexican Centennial and Bicentennial Celebrations.

Submitted by: Ejército de Liberación del Monumento (ELM)

via our Contact Us page. See, you can contribute too!

The Virgo Celebrations

Ah, so I missed commemorating Los Angeles’ birthday this past Saturday, September 4th. Ooops! Well, happy belated birthday great City of Los Angeles! I am your daughter by four generations, my body is filled with traces of your asphalt, the smog of your skies and the dust of your palm fronds. I am truly of this city.

Anyways, I’m here to remind you of another celebration, and this one I only remembered because a co-worker asked me “Chimatli, vas a ir a el desfile en East LA este domingo?” “Huh, cual desfile?” I told you in my last Botanitas post that I’ve been hopelessly removed from the social scene. “El desfile de 16 de Septiembre” she shakes her head and smiles slightly, the same disappointing gesture she makes when my tongue turns Spanish all mushy. Well, in case you don’t know either, this year Mexico turns 200 years old. There are grand celebrations being planned all over the Mexico but you don’t need to travel very far to take part in the commemorations because the Eastside is having it’s very own Mexican Independence Day Parade!

Don’t miss the Bicentennial Mexican Independence Day Parade and Festival showcasing celebrity grand marshal operatic tenor Plácido Domingo on Sunday, September 12 in East LA. Watch top Latin stars’ performances, play games, ride attractions and enjoy delicious food. The parade begins 11am at Cesar E. Chavez Avenue and Indiana Street and travels to Mednik Avenue, ending adjacent to at Belvedere Park with a festival.

-from the Metro LA site

Placido Domingo is the grand marshall which is pretty impressive for East LA. Though nothing can compare to the spectacle I witnessed when Juan Gabriel was in the parade. Hordes of fans mobbing his float, filling the sidewalks and streets so that even us spectators were crushed in the crowds. That was pure insanity and madness the likes of which I will probably never see again.

Read more about Mexico’s bicentennial celebrations here.


January 1

For 2010, Rafael Cardenas set two personal goals for himself for 2010: write a short story once a week and to take a picture once a day, while learning photography techniques and mastering his cameras settings along the way. Nine months later, what started as a personal endeavor for Cardenas has morphed into its own entity. His Canon D10 is always within an arms reach, ready to seize the moment in front of him at 1/250th of a second. People going on about their day, landmarks and moments of serenity are just some of the subjects Cardenas has captured since starting his photogRAFA:365 project.

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