Saturday morning, I had the honor of giving the commencement speech at UC Riverside’s College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences for their Sociology, Philosophy, Neuroscience, and Psychology students (what a mouthful!).
Following are my prepared remarks, which I mostly hewed to. I did begin my speech with an explanation of what ustedes and y’all meant, and the pocos pero locos line was improvised and laughed at by about three people.
Let’s start with an experiment, shall we?
I want all the psychology majors to stand up? Applaud them, por favor, for getting to this special day.
Can intrepid POCHO Associate Naranjero Gustavo ¡Ask A Mexican! Arellano and OC Weekly colleague Nick Schou make it through the Nuke Burger, said to be the hottest/spiciest hamburger in Orange County?
How spicy is it? The OC Weekly’s Charles Lam reports:
The Nuke Burger [at Bombburger in Huntington Beach] is quite possibly the spiciest burger in Orange County at the moment, featuring a who’s who’s list of hottest peppers in the world (Scorpion and Reaper for you pepper heads, as well as Ghost Pepper Jack Cheese).
Even in Santa Ana, Orange County, Califas (it’s actually “Santana,” Gustavo Arellano notes), the Latino-controlled city council dislikes taco trucks. To find out why, it seems prudent to once again ¡Ask A Mexican!
Not only is getting the work really fracking hard – you have to hang outside Home Depot and chase contractors’ trucks – but lots of times day laborers work all day and then get ripped off for their pay.
This cumbia music video from Los Jornaleros del Norte (The Day Laborers of the North) and the National Day Laborer Organizing Network highlights the fight against wage theft.
“Ese gúey no paga,” they sing. “That dude doesn’t pay!”
Gustavo ¡Ask A Mexican! Arellano continues on his World Cup kick with a discussion of the Mexican team’s performance in their tied match with Brazil and the spectators’ habit of calling the opposing team putos. [NSFW adult language.] P.S.: Spoiler warning: You may be a puto if….
POCHO amigo Gustavo Arellano (he's the ¡Ask A Mexican! guy and editor of the O.C. Weekly) delivered this keynote speech at Arizona State University's biannual Hispanic Convocation Wednesday. The photo (below) shows him at his day job.
Gracias, Arizona State, for asking me to be this year’s Hispanic Convocation keynote. I’m sure it’s a mercy offering to UCLA, after your Sun Devils demolished my Bruins this year in football. No hard feelings–hey, at least we both kicked the nalgas of USC this season, right?
When I announced that I was giving a speech here today, congratulations came from across the country. But also invading my inbox were the inevitable insults–not toward me, but toward the state of Arizona. “Don’t forget to take your papers!” was the most obvious dig. “Watch out for Sheriff Arpaio!” was another one–that one I took to heart, because he did have my former bosses at the New Times arrested a couple of years back. But the slams that I found especially egregious were those that insisted I shouldn’t bother coming to this so-called evil estado in the first place.
Mills started the Facebook page “Taco Shells from Doritos Movement” in 2009, encouraging followers to “tell Frito-Lay that we demand nacho cheesy taco shells!”
On the page, Mills posted photoshopped images of well known figures including Albert Einstein with a cheesy taco shell in a thought bubble, Steve Jobs holding a Macbook with a cheesy taco shell on the screen and Chuck Norris doing a karate kick while holding a cheesy taco shell….
Summers are when our amigo Gustavo ¡Ask A Mexican! Arellano, editor of the OC Weekly, turns on his inner George Clooney. In a grisly yearly ritual, Gustavo entrusts me, POCHO Jefe-in-Chief Lalo Alcaraz, with the opportunity to illustrate a comic relating some sad aspect of his tragic love life. He writes the comic script, but then lets me have his way with the last panel, and the results are guaranteed to entertain you and embarrass Gus! The way he described it to me, it looks something like this…
Author, editor and POCHO amigo Gustavo Arellano delivered this commencement speech yesterday to the graduates of Long Beach Community College:
Gracias for having me here, Vikings. I come from that evil land over yonder on the other side of the 405 — Orange County. Por favor don’t hold it against me, as I come to ustedes in peace and with a message about our shared background as products of California’s magnificent community college system.
I graduated in 1999 from Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, just down the 405. My experience there was similar in many respects to yours. I had a full course load, took intersession, took as many summer school courses as possible, and did all of this while working full time, no financial aid, and helping to support my family. The classes were crowded, the parking horrific, the professors ranging from Einsteins to idiots.
Despite his adamant refusal to bribe us for coverage, we still want to present Pocho Ocho reasons he should win a pinche Pulitzer:
8. The use of the inverted exclamation point in ¡Ask A Mexican! has forced gabachos across America to learn special key combinations to send him hateful email.
7. Consistently employing “SantAna” when referring to the Orange County City of Santa Ana has moved Carlos Santana out of the old-age home and into a long-term gig at the House of Blues on Hollywood’s Sunset Strip.