How immigrants are redefining 'American' in Southern California

A stream of consciousness ode to Tapatío sauce, revisited

Photo by Jeremy Brooks/Flickr (Creative Commons)

Before the weekend begins, I'm reposting this too-good-to-miss nugget from a post yesterday. In a piece about hunting for Tapatío hot sauce-flavored Doritos, I included a wonderful, if hard to follow, ode to Tapatío sauce that I came across in an “I Love Tapatío Hot Sauce” section on

Its author, identified on the site as "marioxgutierrez," wrote it stream of consciousness style in hip-hop phonetics. It takes a little concentration to read, but it's oddly poetic and sweet. And this is not, I repeat not, the kind of person you want to get into a Tapatío-versus-Cholula argument with.

Hit it, Tapatío-loving guy:

Deff a socal thing even tho now that im in miami and i see it out here ive seen its caught on i literally grew up on tapatio specially me an my momz fav doritos or kc masterpiece lays chips or any chips really an tapatio cant go wrong an then on all my momz food we used tapatio on tacos de frijoles chinitos y tocino also spam cooked an diced an put on a tortilla wit sum ketchup an tapatio an my fav hot dogs wit ketchup mustard n tapatio ive tried other hot sauces like my dads fav since he from tamazula jalisco salsa tamazula an dont get me wrong das my number 2 but na an also amor, buffalo, valentina, an u can even throw in tabasco an water’d down hot sauces from down south an yea no comparison tapatio goes wit everything oh yea i forgot cup o noodles or jus top ramen wit sum lemon juice an tapatio shiiiiieeeet i even got it in my cars glove box so yea I LOVE TAPATIO.


The forgotten history of the Filipino laborers who worked with Cesar Chavez

Photo by TK/Flickr (Creative Commons)

A mural commemorating the late labor leader Philip Vera Cruz, who worked alongside Cesar Chavez, May 2010

For those closely related to the farm labor movement of the 1960s and 70s, the story of Asian American farm workers and the extent to which these workers were involved in the movement is fairly common knowledge. But for many others familiar with the legacy of labor and civil rights leader César Chávez, whose birthday was celebrated yesterday as a state holiday, the story of the Filipino laborers who worked side by side with him is a piece of near-forgotten history.

The Filipino American culture website featured a film trailer yesterday for a documentary titled "The Delano Manongs: Forgotten Heroes of the UFW" that tells the story of United Farm Workers of America leaders Larry Itliong, Phillip Vera Cruz, Pete Velasco, and Andy Imutan, all of whom were instrumental to the farm labor movement.


In the news this morning: Minorities and political influence, a dangerous crossing from North Africa, in the fields on Cesar Chavez Day, mor

America's New Electorate - The Atlantic How the growth of minority populations can reshape the political landscape in the U.S.

Muslim Girl Still Scared After Attack - NBC New York The 13-year-old girl attacked by a 12-year-old male schoolmate endured "months of harassment" from the boy, who was arrested and charged with felony assault.

Migrants headed for Italy die when boats sink - Sydney Morning Herald As North Africans fleeing unrest head north by sea, rescuers have retrieved the bodies of 27 migrants whose boats sank in the Mediterranean.

Judge to hear defense of Arizona's immigration law - Arizona Daily Star The judge considering challenges to Arizona's SB 1070 immigration enforcement law is scheduled to hear arguments Friday over the state legislature's request to join the governor in the defense.


On the trail of the Tapatío Doritos

Photo by Jeremy Brooks/Flickr (Creative Commons)

Last week, I came across a Facebook update from a friend with a photo that made my heart skip a beat. It was a small photo of a bag of Doritos, on the front a familiar and revered image: The smiling man in the sombrero from the label of the Tapatío hot sauce bottle.

Her message:

OMFG!!! I have been waiting a long time for this.

Ditto, sister. L.A.'s own Tapatío hot sauce, the closely-guarded secret of a local Mexican American family business, is a regional obsession. Before it became available nationwide, I remember smuggling it in my carry-on bag to California expats on the east coast, even to a friend who had moved to Europe.

And wisely, after years of creating bizarre flavors that range from the very un-taco-like "Original Taco" and even faux pizza, Frito-Lay recently got wise, apparently, to the fact that many people like to douse the company's chips in Tapatío sauce. Sure, there are flavors like "Flamas," blazing-hot Doritos the deep red color of imaginary hellfire with a lemony tang, but it's no Tapatío sauce. The Tapatío-flavored Doritos - along with Tapatío-flavored Fritos - have only been available recently.