Thursday, May 10, 2018

Chicanonautica: Another Cinco de Mayo in Trumptopia

And suddenly, another Cinco de Mayo . . . Didn't we just do this? My timespace coordination is all screwed up again. Where am I? Is Trump still president?

Yes. He is. This last year was not a hallucination.

There’s still no Great Wall keeping out the brown, drug-dealing, raping horde. El Presidente is threatening to “close down the country” if he doesn’t get funding for it. What did politicians do before Twitter?

Meanwhile, a revolution of sorts has happened, and Phoenix is in the thick of it. The #RedForEd movement had kids and striking teachers in red t-shirts and protesting on the sidewalks.  (I’m tempted to call them “redshirts” and wondering if the current generation get the antediluvian Star Trek reference?) The schools were shut down. Traffic was eerily light, post-apocalyptic.

Then Governor Doug Ducey jumped onboard. And the Arizona state legislature approved his pay proposal. School is back in session.

To quote Ducey: “We have moved further than anybody could have ever even imagined a month ago.”

Who could have predicted this a year ago?

There has been no word from the White House about this. Is El Presidente still planning on closing down America?

How do you celebrate Cinco de Mayo in this climate?

Most Norteamericanos still don’t know what it is, even though it’s well liked. After all, it allows America to wallow in delusions while ignoring the reality, even though it’s right next door. It’s what this country does best these deranged days.

There are news articles illustrated by photos of tacos that don’t look like any I have encountered in Aztlán or Mexico.

Then there’s the controversy over sombreros being racist.

Is my moustache a politically incorrect stereotype?

I keep suggesting bringing reenactments of the Battle of Puebla north of the border, but it’s not catching on. Too bad. It could be such fun, especially with fake rifle and cannon fire, and men blackfaced, and Zacapoaxtla women in colorful peasant dresses, chewing on chicken feet and waving blunt swords.

Maybe it would inspire more interesting protests in the future.

I had to work on el Fifth. We had a pot luck. I brought some chips and salsa, mild, remembering the tastes of some of my fellow library employees. 
I listened to Radio Campesina on the drive over. They played a lot of the high-speed, high-energy, rambunctious, fonqui 21st century Mexican music. You could hurt yourself making your colita do a terramoto to this stuff.

There were mariachis at the library. They were non-fonqui, but then the competition is serious among mariachis in Phoenix.

Soon the second floor smelled like a Mexican restaurant, and we had tacos in the break room. Gringo tacos, but then I don’t expect these holidays to get too ethnic. Somebody did bring carnitas, which brought things close to a rasquache aesthetic.

On my way home, the music on La Campesina was less rambunctious. Los Tigres del Norte. “Somos Más Americanos.” My sentiments exactly.

Meanwhile, El Presidente sez: "And we may have to close up our country to get this straight, because we either have a country or we don't.”

Ernest Hogan’s novel Smoking Mirror Blues is out and selling as a new ebook, and his wife, Emily Devenport’s latest opus Medusa Uploaded is making on impact in paperback, ebook, and audiobook. Political turmoil seems to be good for the sci-fi biz,

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