Even more unknown to Westsiders than my hometown of Lincoln Heights, is my current neighborhood of El Sereno. I’m sure many have driven through it at 40+mph since it’s cut in half by the grand highway of Huntington Drive. Waiting for the 78 in the morning I can attest to how much traffic this neighborhood gets.
Yesterday after having picked up my bicycle from Gabe’s Bicycles for a much needed tune-up I saw this new monument to El Sereno, complete with green rolling hills. On its left it denotes the fact that El Sereno sits right on what was Historic Route 66; on its left it also shows that it also is on what was El Camino Real.
Things are getting tough.The weather is being idiosyncratic to put it lightly; libraries seem to be going the way of the Buffalo; unemployment is being cut down by the knees; people are getting fired because of doctored videos by right-wing racists; BP has still not sealed their leak; it is still not murder for a police officer to shoot an unarmed, handcuffed man; but you…
Yes, I ride a track bike. I have for 3 years now. I’d rather have a nice ten-speed these days but I don’t have the money for that kind of purchase right now.
But interestingly enough I have noticed a surge in “fixed-gear” bicycles (and bicycles in general) in the Eastside in general; and being that I live in El Sereno & work in Lincoln Heights, my perceptions arise from these neighborhoods. I have been a bicycle-commuter (& bus commuter) to get to work & school pretty steadily for almost 5 years now. As a young kid I used to get around by bicycle & bus too, but typcial of Los Angeles kids, I started driving as soon as could! Once I grew tired of driving and became aware of the social, environmental, health repurcussions due to car culture I sought to abandon it (though I am no anti-car evangelical!).
At work (a local high scool), I would often be asked why I did not drive a car; most students would see me walk onto the campus with my bicycle. I would say the usual environmental, social, political, and economic reasons: still most 16 years old are baffled when an adult doesn’t drive. I get the same response when I tell them I don’t have a TV at home. For them a car is equated with freedom of movement: anyone that has driven in Los Angeles for a few years knows that this myth slowly erodes…
[audio:http://laeastside.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/Godspeed-You-Black-Emperor-FAInfinity-01-The-Dead-Flag-Blues-Outro_.mp3|titles=Godspeed You Black Emperor! – F#A#Infinity – 01 – The Dead Flag Blues (Outro)_]
The following is what I felt; what I saw. I lay no claim to objectivity: this is going to be heavy-handed. I am a student at CSULA. Been so for almost a decade. I have seen first hand the corrosion of the quality of resources, services, and education. I took no part in the organization of anything for March 4th. I was merely a participant at the march, as well as doing some acts of solidarity with the NO-CUTS COALITION at CSULA previous to the march. My lack of engagement was probably due to my tendency to not want to be an activist and also my perpetual business. As a student/worker, one is in a place that is extremely vulnerable: when one is not working, one is studying; and when one is not doing either of those, one is busy trying to get-by. This is a perfect place for the State and Global Capitalism to have us in: a place in limbo. The report continues after the jump… Continue reading →
The arbitrary guidelines be damned! If you think you’re a chican@ then you are one! Since not everyone these days wants to be one then can we say that Chicanismo (for lack of a better term) is a choice! Not a death sentence! At one point it was a choice, a banner to waved (or now a T-Shirt to wear). But now if you fall somewhere on the dead Left, then the assumption is that you are a Chicano through-and-through. One must wade through many proto-typical Chican@s to find someone that is playful with the term.
[Oh to be playful again! To understand that all is play, and that the work part is something that happens in your mind not reality.] Continue reading →
Something that I’ve always been intrigued and interested by is how people of color come to, in a way, escape their perceived cultural outposts. For non-POC folks being “strange & different” is seen as plain eccentricity while doing the same while being a POC is seen as pure deviance. We are maligned by both the “dominant” culture and our “traditional” culture. As noted in such films such as AfroPunk, we exist somewhere neither here nor there (but maybe everywhere?)