Around Our Town: Puro Party Picks for Father’s Day Weekend 2020

fathersdaychurchsignFather and Son Chile-Eating Contest: Quién es más macho? The East Pocho Optimists Club once again sets up a socially-distanced shop at Fernando Valenzuela Field for their annual chile-eating contest, which pits father-son teams against each other to see who can ascend the Picante Podium of Pain. The winning team wins even more chiles! Sunday, noon.

Bronche: Angry Bull cocktails (Red Bull, tequila, orange juice) are just $3 and dads get all the Mexican Meatloaf Sliders they want for free on Father’s Day at TGI Viernes in the Rancho Pocho Mall. Sunday 10 AM – 2 PM. Outside dining only. Wear a mask when not seated. Mention my name, Chale Knickerbocker, for a blank stare.

Mas…Around Our Town: Puro Party Picks for Father’s Day Weekend 2020

54 Years Ago in East Los: ‘Happy New Year Baby’ from The Sisters


Fifty-four years go – 1965 – big hair and girl groups were what all the cool kids dug in East Los Angeles.

Sisters Rosella, Ersi, and Mary Arvizu believed they could be the next Supremes — even before there were Supremes. They called themselves The Sisters.

Mark Guerrero, son of Chicano music legend Lalo Guerrero, tells the story:

Mas…54 Years Ago in East Los: ‘Happy New Year Baby’ from The Sisters

Around Our Town: Puro Party Picks for Father’s Day Weekend 2019

fathersdaychurchsignFather and Son Chile-Eating Contest: Quién es más macho? The East Pocho Optimists Club once again sets up shop at Fernando Valenzuela Field for their annual chile-eating contest, which pits father-son teams against each other to see who can ascend the Picante Podium of Pain. The winning team wins even more chiles! Sunday, noon.

Bronche: Angry Bull cocktails (Red Bull, tequila, orange juice) are just $3 and dads get all the Mexican Meatloaf Sliders they want for free on Father’s Day at TGI Viernes in the Rancho Pocho Mall. Sunday 10 AM – 2 PM. Mention my name, Chale Knickerbocker, for a blank stare.

Mas…Around Our Town: Puro Party Picks for Father’s Day Weekend 2019

America pauses Monday for Dr. Ricky Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 2019

(PNS reporting from WASHINGTON, D.C.) America will pause Monday to remember the life and message of Dr. Ricky Martin Luther King, Jr., whose Tengo a Dream y Dance! speech changed the nation forever.

Post offices and other public facilities not already closed by the shutdown will be shuttered, banks and stock exchanges are taking the day off and salsa picante and sweet potato pie – his favorite snack combo – will go on sale all across America. Monday’s holiday honors RMLK’s 41st birthday.

Mas…America pauses Monday for Dr. Ricky Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 2019

53 Years Ago in East Los: ‘Happy New Year Baby’ from The Sisters


Fifty-three years go – 1965 – big hair and girl groups were what all the cool kids dug in East Los Angeles.

Sisters Rosella, Ersi, and Mary Arvizu believed they could be the next Supremes — even before there were Supremes. They called themselves The Sisters.

Mark Guerrero, son of Chicano music legend Lalo Guerrero, tells the story:

Mas…53 Years Ago in East Los: ‘Happy New Year Baby’ from The Sisters

Around Our Town: Puro Party Picks for Father’s Day Weekend 2018

fathersdaychurchsignFather and Son Chile-Eating Contest: Quién es más macho? The East Pocho Optimists Club once again sets up shop at Fernando Valenzuela Field for their annual chile-eating contest, which pits father-son teams against each other to see who can ascend the Picante Podium of Pain. The winning team wins even more chiles! Sunday, noon.

Bronche: Angry Bull cocktails (Red Bull, tequila, orange juice) are just $3 and dads get all the Mexican Meatloaf Sliders they want for free on Father’s Day at TGI Viernes in the Rancho Pocho Mall. Sunday 10 AM – 2 PM. Mention my name, Chale Knickerbocker, for a blank stare.

Mas…Around Our Town: Puro Party Picks for Father’s Day Weekend 2018

Around Our Town: Puro Party Picks for Father’s Day Weekend 2017

fathersdaychurchsignFather and Son Chile-Eating Contest: Quién es más macho? The East Pocho Optimists Club once again sets up shop at Fernando Valenzuela Field for their annual chile-eating contest, which pits father-son teams against each other to see who can ascend the Picante Podium of Pain. The winning team wins even more chiles! Sunday, noon.

Bronche: Angry Bull cocktails (Red Bull, tequila, orange juice) are just $3 and dads get all the Mexican Meatloaf Sliders they want for free on Father’s Day at TGI Viernes in the Rancho Pocho Mall. Sunday 10 AM – 2 PM. Mention my name, Chale Knickerbocker, for a blank stare.

Mas…Around Our Town: Puro Party Picks for Father’s Day Weekend 2017

Tia Lencha’s Cocina: Hot Sexy Aphrodisiac Valentine’s Day Salsa

salsainabowlI’m Elena Maria Celina Carrillo Martinez de los Angeles Delgadillo Trujillo…Lopez. But you can call me Lencha.

Today my son is in his room reading his Naruto muñequito books, so I can chare with you my special recipe for Valentime’s Day.

M’ijo don’t like it when I talk about sexy things because me and his daddy are divorce because his daddy like to stick his weene ebrywhere.

M’ijo usually checks my espelling but oh gwell. Since I have a little gwhile, I give you the recipe for Aphrodisiac Salsa.

Mas…Tia Lencha’s Cocina: Hot Sexy Aphrodisiac Valentine’s Day Salsa

America pauses Monday for Ricky Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 2017

(PNS reporting from WASHINGTON, D.C.) America will pause tomorrow to remember the life and message of Ricky Martin Luther King Jr., whose Tengo a Dream y Dance! speech changed the nation forever.

Post offices and other public facilities will be closed, banks and stock exchanges are taking the day off and salsa picante and sweet potato pie – his favorite snack combo – will go on sale all across America. Monday’s holiday honors RMLK’s 39th birthday.

Mas…America pauses Monday for Ricky Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 2017

51 Years Ago in East Los: ‘Happy New Year Baby’ from The Sisters


Fifty-one years go – 1965 – big hair and girl groups were what all the cool kids dug in East Los Angeles.

Sisters Rosella, Ersi, and Mary Arvizu believed they could be the next Supremes — even before there were Supremes. They called themselves The Sisters.

Mark Guerrero, son of Chicano music legend Lalo Guerrero, tells the story:

Mas…51 Years Ago in East Los: ‘Happy New Year Baby’ from The Sisters

Sombra of OVERWATCH: Latinx champion of a tech-forward identity

sombraAfter months of secrets leaking out of headquarters, the new hero for Orange County’s Blizzard Entertainment hit game Overwatch has finally been revealed. She’s a Mexican Latina named Sombra (photo). Her name means Shadow.

But does this impact the culture of Orange County? The culture of video game development? The very essence of Mexican and Mexican-American culture?

As a first generation Mexican-American, I think Sombra represents an important and much-needed shift in thought to get Latino people into careers in which we are consistently underrepresented. She is the champion of a new tech-forward identity that uses its own skills to take matters into its own hands. But, most importantly, she’s really freakin’ cool, as you can see in this video:

Mas…Sombra of OVERWATCH: Latinx champion of a tech-forward identity

Take back Latino Heritage Month and #EndHispandering!

hispanderingOn September 14 a Latina friend of mine who’s also a college professor said to me, “Brace yourself for Hispanic Heritage Month, I’m already getting phone calls about recommendations for mariachi bands.”

I laughed a bit, but her comment stayed with me. See, she’s half Colombian and I’m Puerto Rican, and the idea of becoming the “go to” people about such things struck me as, well, just another example of how stereotypes about Latinos often work.

The fact that people are asking her about mariachi bands reveals how U.S. society usually lumps us together under the umbrella label “Latino/a” or “Hispanic” despite our cultural differences and diversity.

At the same time, her warning (“brace yourself”) fittingly captured how many Latinxs/Hispanics feel about Hispanic Heritage Month (which I prefer to call Latino Heritage Month because I find it more inclusive, less Spanish-oriented).

Mas…Take back Latino Heritage Month and #EndHispandering!

Around Our Town: Puro Party Picks for Father’s Day Weekend 2016

fathersdaychurchsignFather and Son Chile-Eating Contest: Quién es más macho? The East Pocho Optimists Club once again sets up shop at Fernando Valenzuela Field for their annual chile-eating contest, which pits father-son teams against each other to see who can ascend the Picante Podium of Pain. The winning team wins even more chiles! Sunday, noon.

Bronche: Angry Bull cocktails (Red Bull, tequila, orange juice) are just $3 and dads get all the Mexican Meatloaf Sliders they want for free on Father’s Day at TGI Viernes in the Rancho Pocho Mall. Sunday 10 AM – 2 PM. Mention my name, Chale Knickerbocker, for a blank stare.

Mas…Around Our Town: Puro Party Picks for Father’s Day Weekend 2016

True Story: I was a teenaged guera, white like Jesus too

bigblondejesusIn 1969, my mother registered to vote as a member of La Raza Unida, an independent “third party.”

When she came home and shared the news with her father — declaring that she was a “Chicana” — he grew angry.

He told her never to use that word, since “Chicano” was a derogatory term when he was growing up.

Despite my mother’s defiance of the patriarchal family regime that day, she never talked much about the importance of our Mexican heritage or exploring the values of Xicanisma.

Mom did send me to an all-girls Catholic high school, however, and maybe that was an attempt at showing me empowerment for women. The school was in 75% white Glendora, though, so our Jesus statues were white (photo, above), just like our feminism. 

Mas…True Story: I was a teenaged guera, white like Jesus too

Tia Lencha’s Cocina: Hot and Sexy Aphrodisiac Valentine’s Day Salsa

salsainabowlI’m Elena Maria Celina Carrillo Martinez de los Angeles Delgadillo Trujillo…Lopez. But you can call me Lencha.

Today my son is in his room reading his Naruto muñequito books, so I can chare with you my special recipe for Valentime’s Day.

M’ijo don’t like it when I talk about sexy things because me and his daddy are divorce because his daddy like to stick his weene ebrywhere.

M’ijo usually checks my espelling but oh gwell. Since I have a little gwhile, I give you the recipe for Aphrodisiac Salsa.

Mas…Tia Lencha’s Cocina: Hot and Sexy Aphrodisiac Valentine’s Day Salsa

America to pause for Ricky Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 2016

(PNS reporting from WASHINGTON, D.C.) America will pause tomorrow to remember the life and message of Ricky Martin Luther King Jr., whose Tengo a Dream y Dance! speech changed the nation forever.

Post offices and other public facilities will be closed, banks and stock exchanges are taking the day off and salsa picante and sweet potato pie – his favorite snack combo – will go on sale all across America. Monday’s holiday honors RMLK’s 39th birthday.

Despite his tragic death in 2007 (he was shot and killed by the president of his fan club before an appearance in Dallas) King’s promotion of “love, equality, justice, innocence, malice, refuge, oppression, freedom” has continued to resonate for confused African-Americans, Latinos, Afro-Latinos, Chicanx and Anglx alike.

Mas…America to pause for Ricky Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 2016

Dancing with Selena, memories of childhood, and pepperoni pizza

Three hours into Selena night at the Regent in downtown Los Angeles, Bidi Bidi Bom Bom starts playing.

I feel this deep, animal sense of belonging.

This is my song and I need to be on stage. I claw my way up to the stage and slip in a puddle of what is maybe human sweat.

The hands of my fellow Selena enthusiasts pull me up.

We do what we came here to do: we dance.

Mas…Dancing with Selena, memories of childhood, and pepperoni pizza