By On the occasion of our 20th anniversary
By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
Photo by Jack GouldRoots crooner Jimmy Intveld (a) looks like the Prince of Darkness and (b) has a high-speed connection straight to his ear —if, like some of my screechier Bible-thumpin' friends, you believe that New Age chakra-gazing, Tarot-reading, past-life-living folks are tools of the devil on par with Ouija boards and butt-fuckin'. The darkly sexy Intveld apparently has more than one reincarnation under his toned belt; I've never asked him to elucidate because I'm kind of a pussy. I figure that's personal.
Intveld's June 9 night set at Fountain Valley's Abilene Rose started promisingly, with a big-haired, down-home hoochie mama in painted-on jeans and a Stetson exiting as I made my happy way inside. And it continued promisingly, as we all gaped and guffawed at a handsome, trim yuppie who apparently thought he was The Greatest Dancer Evah! He really was an accomplished hoofer, but his poor partner (who apparently thought she was having fun) was having to dance double time through every song in order to keep up with his grim calisthenics. It was like watching that scene in Staying Alive in which John Travolta throws his partner offstage and out into the wings, the better to exult in his own Fosse-esque glory. Jazz hands, everyone!
Catch Jimmy Intveld at Hootenanny. Tell him you like his aura.Spurgeon Experience II in Santa Ana this weekend wasn't nearly as pretty as The Spurgeon Experience, which is good because I hate having to give props to catty Max Presneill. The works (dozens of artists plopped into the empty Spurgeon Building; they're there through this Sunday) were especially strong this time around, with installations like Yong Sin's 1989-lime-green tunnel making viewers seasick as soon they tried to walk in it. But the party afterward? My friends! What's with all these DJs who, as soon as everyone's dancing delightedly to R&B, decide to segue to ambient dub? It's like when you're in the midst of the act of love with, oh, anyone, and just when you're reaching your petit morte, your eyeballs popping and your face contorting into grotesque chipmunkeries, your beloved decides to do you a favor and change the pace. Hey, buddy! If it ain't broke, don't fix it!
And don't fix the Los Angeles Times! What would we all have done without Chuck Phillips' shocking exposé detailing Verizon Wireless (née Irvine Meadows) Amphitheatre's outrageous practice of, um, scalping three rows of tickets to each show. The front-page piece, written practically at New Yorkerlength, was the culmination of a six-week investigation trumpeted within the article itself. Six weeks. It kind of makes you wonder what else the Times lets its reporters spend six weeks researching. The criminal-justice system, most notably the fiery car wrecks that have replaced fair trials, and scaredy-cat politicians' whoring like cartwheel-turning cheerleaders for the arbitrarily applied (and patently racist) death penalty? No? How about OC's fat chunk of the tobacco settlements—and how our Board of Stupes wants to spend it exclusively on jail expansion instead of health care, in which our fair county ranks, um, last? No again? How about a six-week undercover investigation by the miraculously insipid Booth Moore(catch her in the SoCal Living section) into the seaweed wraps and mud baths favored by the ladies of leisure? Yes! A thousand times yes! It's nice to know some news outlets still have their priorities in order.
The 67th Assembly District dinner on June 10 honoring Democratic pillars of all that is good and right Al Ybarra and the still suspiciously ebony-tressed Ray Cordova(he credits the shocking blackness of his hair to chile peppers and menudo) was not sanctioned by the media elite. (Look, ma! I'm Rush Limbaugh!) At least, I didn't see anyone from the other papers skulking around, which isn't terribly surprising, since even at the Dems' OC convention, the only reporter (and very briefly) was The Orange County Register's handsome and urbane Martin Wisckol. (Cocktail party Friday at my place, Marty. Same time as usual. Bring cab fare.)
The Times—focused in its mission to out-Reg the Reg (efforts best witnessed in the works of the Times' hilarious editorial-page cartoonist Michael Ramirez, who unfailingly manages to be both odious and even more odious)—never bothers sending anyone.
The standing-room-only ballroom at Long Beach's Golden Sails Resort Hotelwas filled with brothers and sisters (in the labor sense and the black sense) from Local this and Local that, candidates for various Assembly posts, and Democratic stalwarts like glamorous, young, behind-the-scenes-y OC Democratic Foundation executive director Sandra Ramos and no-nonsense old lady (and local party chair) Jeanne Costales, who gets drier and funnier every time I see her and always looks like she's about to rap your fingers with a spoon and tell you to get your elbows off the table.
But must I be in charge of everything? Rather than making us all sit there for two hours listening to people read citations and commendations from Assembly people (who cares?) and congresspeople (could Loretta Sanchez's have been any more embarrassingly rote and impersonal?), why not take a page from our friends the Quakers and let people stand up and tell stories of their run-ins with the heroic duo? Especially with the hilarious and foul-mouthed Cordova (who accompanied his bride of 40 years), some real juicy smack coulda been talked. Say! What if Cordova's hair were its own sentient being, like Henry Rollins' neck? Oh! The foul-mouthed stories (like a delightful frappé of LBJ and Dick Nixon, but without the unpleasant Jew-and-nigger talk) it could tell!