FROM MEXTIZARHETORICA

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Around El Paso on Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Martin Luther King Jr. Day, January 19, 2009, is a time to remember one of the greatest African-American leaders of our time. But the day is also about commemorating what he stood for: freedom for all people. Monday afternoon I drove down to the non-profit organization, Dame la Mano, and saw some images that reflected the spirit of the day. As I was getting back into my car, I saw a group of children playing in the street. They weren’t playing ball or some of the typical street games. They were gathered playing the traditional Mexican bingo game called LOTERIA. I couldn’t resist. The sun danced perfectly off road warming the small breeze that blew down the street, and so I sat down next to Kimberly and said, “Yo quiero jugar.” The looked at me kinda strange. I’m sure they thought, “Que hace esta seƱora?” But I played a couple of rounds of LOTERIA with Kimberly, Emmanuel, Caleb, Hillary, and Adan. “El pescado. La pera. El boracho. La dama. El diablito. La muerte. El arbol. La chalupa. El pajaro. El sol. La luna. La corona.”

Getting in my car and driving north to go home, I came upon a group of students and community members who were painting a mural on the wall of small grocery store in Segundo Barrio. They are working on a series of murals in Segundo called Heroes de Segundo Barrio. This day, they were working on the mural of El Paso DJ, Steve Crosno. The muralists were Ruben Velez, Eddie Velez, Albert Calzada, Jesus, Jerry Calvio, and Kimberly. .

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