Saturday, May 31, 2008
I Salute the Dead
In this drunken town
bitten by the whores
of Texas, I pause with
a beer to salute the dead.
Someone's in my house--
the dead child of Texas
haunts the woodwork
and the child is everywhere
tonight waiting for the dawn,
tomorrow maybe playing
in the mud.
My nephew asks if the black
children he sees on TV
are the poor, and I reply,
"We are the poor."
He cannot understand,
and I know this house
is as poor as this drunken
and I drink my beer
and hiccup into song.
- Luis Omar Salinas
Here's a link where more of his poems can be found.
Friday, May 30, 2008
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Monday, May 26, 2008
Maybe it's just that mouth-wide-open laugh common to all happy babies, but doesn't Amado look a lot like my Aunt Diana in this picture?
The date at the bottom says "April 23, 1944," which was my aunt's second birthday. That's her on the left, my dad on the right, with their father Benjamin Gallegos, who I never knew.
Sunday, May 25, 2008
Friday, May 23, 2008
There is a lot, however, that the audience will not learn from this big movie, which has some big problems as well as major virtues. In between the two periods covered in “Che,” Guevara was an important player in the Castro government, but his brutal role in turning a revolutionary movement into a dictatorship goes virtually unmentioned. This, along with Benicio Del Toro’s soulful and charismatic performance, allows Mr. Soderbergh to preserve the romantic notion of Guevara as a martyr and an iconic figure, an idealistic champion of the poor and oppressed. By now, though, this image seems at best naïve and incomplete, at worst sentimental and dishonest. More to the point, perhaps, it is not very interesting.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
Monday, May 19, 2008
Saturday, May 17, 2008
Friday, May 16, 2008
Above: Us, May 16, 1998, Malcolm X Park, Washington D.C. (check out my braid, ese!)
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
I could point out several other examples where rather innocuous articles about Latinos doing good or about Latino immigration receive dozens of racist, belligerent comments from across the U.S. I've only been gone 10 years, but have I missed something? What the heck is going on down there?
Monday, May 12, 2008
100,000 deaths in Burma is incomprehensible. This is made worse by the political crisis the Burmese continue to suffer.
And now, nearly 10,000 dead in western China.
While the T.V. news is filled with pundits going on and on about the Democratic primaries, the situation in Asia is sad beyond what words can express.
The United Church of Canada, where I work, has an emergency appeal for Burma.
My friend Nicole, who has lived and worked in Southeast Asia, also sent around this list of good organizations you can make donations to toward aid in Burma:
PACT http://www.pactworld.org/cs/help_myanmar -- seems very well equipped to provide immediate aid in the hardest hit area
Mercy Corp http://www.mercycorps.org/myanmarcyclone/
Save The Children http://www.savethechildren.org/emergencies/asia/cyclone-nargis-myanmar-response.html - large NGO
...Guillermo Gomez-Pena's Dangerous Border Crossers.
I have to say, this guy really turns me on.
Though his progressive (even radical) politics can't be challenged, I love the way he doesn't hesitate to take on the "ethno-fundamentalists" of his own people (the Chicano movement) and challenge them in the same way he challenges those on the right. That's what art does.
Here's the site of his performance art troupe, La Pocha Nostra.
Sunday, May 11, 2008
Monday, May 05, 2008
Saturday, May 03, 2008
The next thing you know he'll be describing to us with Miley Cyrus-tears how it feels to have a naked picture of oneself posted on the Internet.
Nigeria Rock Special shines a light on the flipside to the well-documented sounds of Highlife and Afrobeat coming out of Nigeria in the 1970s - young bands caught up in the wave of Psychedelic & Progressive Rock that was sweeping Europe and the States in the late 60s and early 70s.
In the early 1970s the sound of Jimi Hendrix & bands like Santana had started to seep into the mainly soul -based sets of a handful of young bands playing western influenced pop.
Spurred on by Cream drummer Ginger Baker’s visits to Lagos and his band Airforce (featuring many Nigerian musicians), the sound of fuzzed out Rock reverberated around the Universities and nightspots of Lagos and Ibadan. The craze that followed hit the youth & student population of Nigeria hard - mixing fuzz-guitar & heavy African rhythms with elements of Led Zeppelin, Traffic & the Chambers Brothers.
Featuring tracks from cult bands like Mono Mono, Ofege, The Action 13, The Elcados and Tunji Oyelana amongst many others, this album contains 15 of the best cuts from the scene, available for the first time in 30 years.
The CD is accompanied by a 20-page booklet with rare photos, cover art and historical information on the musicians, giving an in-depth look at the scene and its influences.