About El Random Hero

Bailo tango, masco chicle, pego duro, tengo viejas de a montón, tururú...

Following up on neglected memorial site

I visited council member Jose Huizars Boyle Heights office to talk about the memorial site and other issues around the neighborhood. Celina Mancia, a field deputy for the council member informed me that the site has been brought to their attention and they are taking the needed steps to clean up the site. She didn’t go into details when I asked her what those steps are. It’s the nature of the beast that they have to go through procedures and steps to make something happen and it’s understandable that the process will take sometime. However, the process can be sped up the more people call in or visit the office to ask about the site and what’s being done about it. If you read the post and want to do something like I do, call the Boyle Heights office or pay them a visit and inquire about the site.

Continue reading

Neglected hispanic vietnam veterans memorial site

It’s been there for as long as I can remember right on the corner of Brooklyn (Cesar Chavez) and Soto. I notice it every time I pass by it and shortly reflect on its decrepit conditions. However today being the Fourth of July I couldn’t help noticing some irony.


On a day when the families are celebrating by going to the beach or having a bbq, it’s easy to forget those who came before us. Passing by it so often, I’ve gotten use to it being the way it is, but one days like today I realize that I walked passed it with a blind eye for the last time. This post may be the first step into one day getting this memorial site up to the standards and condition it needs to be in. The more people that know about it the better. 

Continue reading

Cheech Marin discusses his art collection

The first time I saw paintings from Cheech Marins collection was in April of last year at the Pico House. Up until that point I had never seen a collection of art that not only represented what I saw and recognized in my daily life, but it also made me appreciate and be proud of my culture and heritage.

Los Angelinos/Chicanos of L.A. : Selections from the Cheech Marin Collection features some of the best pieces in his collection and is now on display for the public at Los Angeles County Museum of County Art. To coincide with the exhibit, Marin and UCLA Professor and LACMA adjunct curator Chon Noriega participated in a discussion yesterday about his collection and the place Chicano art has now and in history.

Continue reading

School lunches becoming tastier

Eating school lunches back in the day had a traumatizing affect on me. Whether it was undercooked pizza, bland hot dogs that probably didn’t have any real meat or crappy stale burritos for breakfast. School lunches never provided any real merit of joy or happiness for me, especially sine there were always long lines for them. I remember basically running straight from the class room to the lunch line just so I can be able to get a decent meal. The few times I ended up in the back, they either ran out of food or had measly scraps and left overs that no one wanted to eat. Then there are other times that I would lose or forget my lunch ticket, then your totally screwed unless a friend had an extra one. On days like those chips and soda were life savors. However, when the Los Angeles Unified School District banned all unhealthy snacks like chips, those huge cookies that cost $.50 and sodas school kids have been suffering. At least that’s according to what my younger sisters use to say. Fast forward a few years later and the LAUSD is finally doing something about its lunch program. In an article published in the L.A. Times today, head chef Mark Baida is finally doing something about it. They used Garfield students as testers for the new school lunches, which is a great idea. Better late than never. At least now the next generation of kids won’t have to eat stale tasteless food like I did going through school. Now if they can do something about the lunch ladies serving the food.     

Taco truck podcast

A couple of weeks ago I had a hand in putting together a pod cast with my friend Luis and Radio Juventud. This was when the new law prohibiting taco trucks from parking in the same spot went in to affect or they got slapped with a $1,000 fine and possible jail time. I had a great time doing it and it was definitely a great learning experience working with Luis. It’s in spanish, which shouldn’t be any problem I hope.        

alt npr radio-juventud-episode_19_-taco-trucks

Sobriety check point on cesar chavez and evergreen

getting towed awayPolice sobriety check points are meant to be used as a safe guards to stop drunk drivers out on the road. This tactic is primarily used on holidays like news years or memorial day when there’s a lot of people driving. Thus my question is why was a check point set up on the corner of Cesar Chavez and Evergreen on June 6 ? Honestly what was the purpose for it ? I’ll reframe from bad mouthing the police because I didn’t ask any of the officers on hand why the post was up, but if anything I did see burnt out road flares and shards of glass in the middle of the street. My best guess is that there was a crash and the police decided to set up a post as a result of that. However it’s disheartening to see a tactic meant to saves live being manipulated into “policing” neighborhoods. When I walked by the scene all I saw was families and people gathered around the police tape watching as family vans being towed away.

what\'s all the commotion ?Among all the commotion, I could hear woman with her kids saying “pinche policia no sirve paranada,” other’s calling friends and family to not drive near the area and other various muffled comments that expressed nothing but contempt and disgust for the police for doing something like this. There was a lot of tension in the air as car after car pulled up to have their license, insurance and what not checked by the police. This of course was a major concern for some because there’s a lot of people driving around who don’t have papers or a legal license to drive. Some tried to drive off through local neighborhoods so as to avoid the check point, but the police had lookouts on motorcycles stopping those who thought they could get away. Others resorted to asking people watching from their homes for a favor and parking in their driveways until the police left. Despite all the commotion and chaos going on people still look out for each other in times of need. Something we need more of.