Home Despot Festival: El Matador & A Killer Toilet


Sometimes when I have free time, by which I mean time when I’m avoiding doing the things I’m supposed to do, I like to go on a walk around my neighborhood of Lincoln Heights, just to see que pasa. Usually there’s not too much excitement, but today I saw a huge Mexican Futbol jersey hanging on the side of the Home Despot and a bunch of stalls over on Ave 22 and figured I’d better see what all the mitote was about. And all of a sudden my lil’ walk turned into an exciting minute of celebrity spotting and a glimpse at one fine toilet. Since you probably also didn’t know about this parking lot festival, click ahead to see a few pics of how it went down!

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Lincoln Heights Bars

Marcellino’s Cafe
2119 N Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90031

Has anyone been to Marcellino’s Cafe on North Broadway? All my years of living in Lincoln Heights, I’ve never dared to step foot in the place. I heard it’s a cop bar and they tend to be a bit territorial about their hangout spots. Another deterrent, they probably only serve Budweiser and other crappy bears.
A bunch of us from the local “Drinkin Heights” group once tried The Office on North Broadway but it was obvious we weren’t their desired crowd. The drink prices were astronomical, on purpose, just for us. We did get a kick out of the signs in the bathroom that warned in bilingual handwritten scrawl “No drug dealing in the restroom.” Even Bob’s Aguila Negra on Daly had more ambiance, although their advertisement of a “plush cellar” was totally misleading.
Le Blanc’s is another place I’ve been meaning to try. I’ve only been there during the day because it’s impossible to find a spot at night, it’s always packed. The draw must be “Las Chicas de Le Blanc’s”, they seem to be popular around these parts.
What is your favorite watering hole in Lincoln Heights?

Yelp guide to Nightlife in Lincoln Heights. (hate to link to Yelp but whatever)

Notice Served: Three The Hard Way

Here are some shows to check out this weekend. Note: First show is on Thursday. If you into hardcore (and powerviolence), then this is like a damned potty. Apoplectic to announce the return of Stapled Shut. I saw em at No Que No years ago, and some drunk punks stumbled in and almost puked on my shoes. One looked at me, while SS played, and blurted, “Are these guys from Finland?” Uh, no. According to their myspace they sound like “puro desmadre.” Who doesn’t like that? Check out their lovely anthem, “Kill The Corporates.” How you like them drums? Endless Demise (-ex Excruciating Terror, -ex Nausea LA) also playing and more.

Kill The Corporates
[audio:https://laeastside.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/Kill-the-Corporates.mp3|titles=Kill the Corporates]

Stapled Shut
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Random’s Rundown: Enter the Weekend


One thing we can all agree on. In this edition of the rundown I’m walking 18 miles, 40 years of Chicana/o History and other events that I won’t be attending because I’m pretty sure I won’t be doing much of anything after walking 18 miles. Anyone wanna give me a foot massage later ?

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Boyle Heights Paranormal Project

Who you gonna call? Members of The Boyle Heights Paranormal Project*

Amongst the many Eastside related Facebook pages to pop up in recent months, The Boyle Heights Paranormal Project is a project that immediately grabbed my attention. I visited their page and was surprised to discover that indeed, this was a real group of folks from the Eastside who went around to local haunted areas to document the supernatural goings-on of the neighborhood.
It makes sense to find documenters of the paranormal in our part of town. The Eastside is home to quite a few century-old graveyards and cemeteries as this area was at one time considered the outskirts of Los Angeles. For many years I’ve been intrigued by rumors that many Eastside elementary schools were haunted due to being built on the former sites of graveyards – these spots being the last open spaces in our rapidly expanding city. I’ve talked to teachers and janitors who have “seen” things.
The Boyle Heights Paranormal Project members are well aware of this history and their frequent documented forays into nearby cemeteries and other phantom-ridden locations result in a bounty of ghostly photographic images. Many of them are downright creepy, in others, you might be hard-pressed to notice anything out of the ordinary. In any case, visit their Facebook page (website coming soon) to view some of these photos…if you dare!
One of the members of the group was kind enough to answer some questions about their project and even tackled one of LA Eastside’s reoccurring queries: are there cholo ghosts?

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Japanese Chicken Tacos


I don’t know how many times I’ve passed by this spot either walking or on the bus and saying to myself, “self, you gotta go try that Japanese Taco place in Little Tokyo. And pick up some manga from the anime shop down the street. You know, the one with the 4 ft tall Zaku from Mobile Suit Gundam. Char’s Red Comet. Yeah that one.” I was in the hood this past Saturday night because I went to go see my friends band play. The lead singer was a former Power Ranger. Like I’m gonna pass that up.

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ALARMA! Crimes Against Nature

Frank gets his grub on 1 Frank 2 frank 3

This morning I shuffled out of the house in my chànclas to bring in the morning newspaper and to bring a bite of breakfast to my favorite pet squirrel, Frank. As I bent to grab the paper, I happened to glance down on the sidewalk where I discovered a ghastly sight that filled me with disgust and horror…

WARNING! WARNING! The following images depict extreme carnage and gore of the: “ALARMA!” magazine kind. If any readers are prone to àsco and revulsion at such sights, STOP NOW! PLEASE DO NOT CLICK TO CONTINUE WITH THE REST OF THIS POST! You have been warned! proceed at your own risk…….ahi de ti!!………. Continue reading

Calle Soto


When I was growing up in the magical neighborhood of Boyle Heights, Soto street was an end, a line that defined the practical limits of my universe. A block or two more to the West and you’d be crossing the river into El Centro, and unless you were on the bus with a few dollars and a reason, you just didn’t need to head in that direction. Everything you wanted to do was happening East of Soto. But  if you traveled along it, Soto St was also a way to quickly get to another part of the Eastside, namely up to Brooklyn Ave and that mitote of tiendas. Or you could head south to Huntington Park for even better deals on cheap clothes. In either case, Soto connected you to where you wanted to waste your weekend.

Nowadays I’ve mostly strayed away from this defining street but I’m quite sure it still functions as a psychogeographic barrier for those in BH. I still travel its distance quite often, noting the changes, trying to remember spots I should make a point to check out. Sometimes I bring along a camera.

Cross over to see some pics of life on or near Soto!

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This is what a police state looks like


A police state looks calm, if you’re not being oppressed.

Grassroots activists and advocacy journalists in Southern California have been decrying the rise and proliferation of “sobriety checkpoints” for the past two years, saying they’re victimizing undocumented immigrants. See the list of links below for recent historical info. Ryan Gabrielson has done some great research, and has two stories, one at the NYT, accompanied by a video, and one at Mother Jones, revealing new and scandalous facts that point to systematically supported, police-coordinated theft.

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Street Safety in Lincoln Heights

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Early evening yesterday, two young teenage cousins were badly injured while crossing the street at North Broadway and Sichel in Lincoln Heights. There is a painted crossing walk in the intersection but it seems the cars that speed along North Broadway ignore the pedestrian right-of-way. According to local store owner and Lincoln Heights Neighborhood Council Vice-President Erika Gallo, this is not the first time someone has been hit by a car in this intersection. Many years ago, a good friend of hers was also hit by a car in this very same intersection and suffered through a long coma. Fortunately, her friend recovered. She and her mother, owner of Sloan’s Cleaners have comforted many a pedestrian who have been through close-calls. Screeching tires and near misses are frequent occurrences on this busy thoroughfare.

For years, Ms. Gallo has been on a campaign to get a signalized crosswalk at this frequently used intersection. She has asked neighbors to come out to tonight’s Lincoln Heights Neighborhood Council meeting to discuss the issue.

Lincoln Heights Neighborhood Council Meeting
February 18, 2010, 6pm
Lincoln Heights Library (community room)
2530 Workman Street
Los Angeles, 90031