Cinco de Mayo, fiesta grande en los Estados Unidos

May 5, 2016

Cinco de Mayo, fiesta grande en los Estados Unidos

Cinco de Mayo, the 5th of May, is the biggest Mexican holiday in the entire United States. Oh sure, the holiday commemorates the 1862 Battle of Puebla, so kids in that Mexican city get the day off to watch a parade, and gringo-infested beach resorts get a little loco, but the rest of Mexico carries on as usual.

North of the border, it’s a different story. The community-based Mexican-American celebrations of the Sixties were co-opted by marketers for big multinational brewers, tequila importers, and mega-food purveyors. In other words, it’s St. Patrick’s Day with mariachis. Is this a great country, or what?

More:

“Cinco de Mayo: A History Obscured by Beers and Burritos,” Jason Ruiz, Long Beach Post

“U.S. Marketers Turn Cinco de Mayo Into Pan-Ethnic National Celebration, Joel Millman, Wall Street Journal

“How Corona Made Cinco de Mayo an American Holiday,” Adam Teeter, VinePair 

“Does Mexico Celebrate Cinco De Mayo? Find Out How Holiday Became Mainstream,” Susmita Baral, Latin Times

“Mexicans don’t understand why you are celebrating Cinco de Mayo,” Allison Jackson, GlobalPost

“Why is Cinco de Mayo More Popular in America Than in Mexico?” Brian Greene, U.S. News & World Report

“Gringo de Mayo,” Gustavo Arellano, OC Weekly

“Cinco de Mayo: A New American Holiday,” Cesar M. Melgoza,Huffington Post

“Cinco De Mayo: Whose Holiday Is It, Anyway?” NPR

“How Not to Be Awful This Cinco de Mayo,” Kelly Williams Brown,Daily Beast

Note: ¿Chilaquiles? Mira aquí.

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John Kasich does … something-or-other. Who?

May 4, 2016

John Kasich does ... something-or-other. Who
Ohio Governor John Kasich (this guy) has suspended his secret campaign for the Republican Presidential candidacy. Mr. Kasich ran on a platform of being more nondescript and less hated than the other guys.

More:

“The Long, Weird Kasich Campaign Gives In To Reality,” Harry Enten, FiveThirtyEight

Kasich for America website. Click, before it melts.

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Pizza consumption at highest level in four years

May 4, 2016

Pizza consumption at highest level in four years

We’re eating more pizza, according to sources in the pizza-industrial complex. The average American ate pizza four times a month in 2015, up from 3.4 times a month in 2014. 32% of consumers say the nutritional value of pies is important to them, up from 25% last year. But forget about veggies —  we want meat, prosciutto in higher-end joints and chicken at all eateries.

If you don’t care about statistics, here’s a pizza report from the NHL:

Read the rest of this entry »

Christian Soldier Cruz Vanquished in Indiana

May 4, 2016

Christian Soldier Ted Cruz Vanquished In Indiana

Freshman Senator Ted Cruz has withdrawn from his crusade for the Republican presidential nomination after his defeat on the bloody battlefield of Indiana. “We left it all on the field,” said Mr. Cruz, after his drubbing from the steak-chomping, golf-club wielding, thrice-married Trump Creature. After a well-deserved rest, Mr. Cruz will resume the holy crusade during his grueling 3-day Senate work week.

More:

“Cruz’s sudden exit from GOP race catches supporters off guard,” Dylan Baddour and Kevin Diaz, Houston Chronicle

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The Curse of the Potato

May 3, 2016

Before the rise of the modern world, why did some societies develop social and architectural complexity while others didn’t?

“The most advanced civilizations all tended to cultivate grain crops, like wheat and barley and corn. Less advanced societies tended to rely on root crops like potatoes, taro and manioc.

It’s not that grains crops were much easier to grow than tubers, or that they provided more food, the economists say. Instead, the economists believe that grains crops transformed the politics of the societies that grew them, while tubers held them back.

Call it the curse of the potato.”

More:

“The sinister, secret history of a food that everybody loves,” Jeff Guo, Washington Post

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Virginia KKK Backs Trump

May 2, 2016

Virginia KKK Backs Trump
The Imperial Wizard of the Rebel Brigade Knights of the Ku Klux Klan has endorsed Donald J. Trump as his choice for US President. “The reason a lot of Klan members like Donald Trump is because a lot of what he believes in, we believe in,” he told Richmond WWBT’s Chris Taylor.

More:

“Virginia KKK Leader Endorses Trump: ‘What He Believes In, We Believe In,’”Katherine Krueger, TPM Livewire

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It Sounds Like My Baby

May 1, 2016

“It Sounds Like My Baby,” written by Tony May and recorded by Bessie Banks in 1963. The background singers are  Dee Dee Warwick, Cissy Houston and Doris Troy. This is the B Side of “Go Now.”

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Spirit In The Sky

May 1, 2016

“Spirit In The Sky,”  written and performed by Norman Greenbaum, released in 1969, and sold 2 million copies in the next year.

Lyrics here.

More:

“A ‘Spirit’ From the ’60s That Won’t Die,” Tom McNichol, New York Times

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Red Red Wine

May 1, 2016

“Red Red Wine,” written by Neil Diamond, performed by Jamaican singer Tony Tribe (Anthony Mossop, aka Tony Kingston) in 1969. This rocksteady version reached number forty-six on the UK Singles Chart, and must have been heard by UB40, who recorded the tune in 1983.

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You’re No Good

May 1, 2016

“You’re No Good,” written by Clint Ballard, Jr., recorded by Betty Everett in 1963. It was a much bigger for Linda Ronstadt in 1975.

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