Thursday, August 01, 2013

Chicanonautica: Storm Clouds Over Arizona

The summer rain finally hit Arizona. Monstrous clouds expanded across the sky, then blasted down fat shafts of rain and slashes of lightning. It got cooler -- down into the low hundreds -- but sticky humid. A lot of folks still have that angry zombie look on their faces.

Flags are still at half-staff for the fallen firefighters, but I’m bracing myself for political turmoil.

Sheriff Joe Arpaio is raiding again, has gotten another death threat, and is talking about wanting to run the Department of Homeland Security.

John “Build the Durn Fence” McCain wants the U.S./Mexico border to be “the most militarized border since the fall of the Berlin Wall.”

The shocking thing is, McCain is actually rather moderate compared to some of my fellow Arizonans.

I recently saw a fresh swastika and the n-world on a bathroom wall between an Apache reservation and a Nazi town.

Then there’s the woman who comes to the library where I work, gets on a computer, and babbles to herself as she types stream-of-consciousness reports to a counter-terrorism website.

Meanwhile, on the westside of the Valley of the Sun -- the side that some Anglos avoid for fear of being shot -- I see a lot of new businesses. It looks like the economy is taking a turn for the better. Sure, a lot of the signs are in Spanish, but should that matter?

It’s actually been a long time since I’ve heard any gunshots in my neighborhood -- or should I say barrio?

So, I’m catching up with some Chicano lit that found its way to me like I’m some kind of weird magnet, and I'm getting called the father of Chicano sci-fi, wondering if a DNA test is in order.

I’m also wondering what Quetzalcoatl, or Tezcatlipoca, would do . . .

Ernest Hogan’s novel High Aztech is available for Kindle, and until August 2 is free from Smashwords with the coupon code TV57H.


Anonymous said...

Thanks Mr. Hogan for your blog today. It feels like "Storm Clouds" over us all in our country lately. Reading La Bloga daily I always get a first thought response. After reading your blog I thought:"The more things change, the more they remain the same." So I researched Karr's more accurate epigram and it's: "The more it changes, the more it's the same thing." So as summer drags on with verdicts and tensions everywhere, I do see myself with an "angry zombie look". I live with constant ansias of watching my son go out and hope for the best. Even with his Irish surname he doesn't look like the more perfect union, so I worry. The knot in my stomach slowly untangles
when I hear his keys in our door. I feel like we are all sitting and waiting to see if things will change for the better. The knots in our stomachs might be the sense that things may get worse.
I appreciate your "weather report" and happy that there is quiet in your barrio.
Also, no DNA required. Just enjoy.


Thank you, Diana. And I was a little worried that this one didn't have enough of a focus. Hope things get better.