Que Rico.

If there’s one thing I do appreciate about YouTube, it’s the opportunity to find rare and increasingly hard-to-find vintage video footage that people take the time to share. For all you mambo freaks like myself, I present this gem of maestro Pérez Prado’s Que Rico El Mambo video, with hilarious dancers Cantinflas & Resortes…courtesy of Latinosomos.

Love.

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Ever since discovering Cerritos in the mid-90s for a college venture (which was well worth it), my wife and I have made the city a constant visit, especially now with a kid who’s up and running and needs good, clean, nurturing space to run around in—something which Cerritos parks do have a lot of.

Cerritos’ Heritage Park has always been a favorite, with its ducks and “Play Island,” literally an island modeled after 1700’s Boston, with everything from slides and jungle gym climb-o-ramas to cannons (which really “fire” into the surrounding moat with the touch of a button) and a galleon moored to the dock. I tell you now, I would’ve begged my parents to bring me out there every weekend if I was a kid.

When we first discovered Heritage Park long, long ago (I’d say a decade), the island and ducks were there, yet the island wasn’t as done up as it is now. But there was still a nice, homely and simple presence to it all, as there were hardly any people there and we basically spent many great afternoons at the park feeding the ducks and walking around. My wife and I love to find hidden treasures like this park was back in the day.

But these days, Heritage Park has become totally populated with park-goers, and it is no longer the gleaming, hidden attraction it used to be. Sure, we still bring the kid there, but my wife and I both take turns sighing, reminiscing of a time when nobody knew about the place. And speaking of hidden treasures, finding a used condom on the ground next to our car was an even greater reason to reflect on the park’s sparkling past. I suppose the current park-going populace is at least taking measures not to increase the park population in the future. Yay.

Nevertheless, the condom (double-bagged, if you look closely, lol) was indeed an indelible image, so it has made it here, amongst the ranks of randomness here at Lefty Limbo.

Free.

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There was a lady sitting in the car next to ours at the Acapulco’s in Torrance. While I took my kid out of his car seat, I glanced over at the lady and noticed she was wearing what appeared to be a niqāb, or veil worn by muslim women which covers the entire head and face, leaving only the eyes open.

She sat there in the hazy afternoon, just waiting in the lot. It reminded me of other instances where I’d seen muslim women waiting in their cars. I didn’t stare, of course, but as I carried my son to the restaurant, I wondered how she felt. Was she happy? I have nothing against muslims, nor anything against any religious faiths in that matter. I believe everyone should worship as they please. But when I see someone set in strict accordance with clothing or dress, I wonder if they ever want a “free dress” day, like they do in Catholic schools—a day to let loose from the uniform and dress however you want. I had a “free dress” day once in 2nd grade (I went to Notre Dame) and totally forgot about it when the day arrived, so I was the only kid in class in uniform that day. Laughing stock.

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Nevertheless, seeing this lady reminded me of another muslim lady I saw at Magic Mountain years ago. Except this one was covered entirely in a burqa, from head to toe. It was summer, and it was hot. Once again, she was waiting alone, by the exit of the Batman rollercoaster. Of course, given the full draping of black cloth in the heat of Valencia, she surely turned the heads of every patron who walked by. Suddenly, a kid ran up to her excitedly and turned to his mom in the distance. “Aw, cool!!! Look mom! A ninja! Can you take a picture? Please??” He posed by her with the biggest smile as the muslim lady looked down at him, confused. But his mom didn’t pay much attention, so in a few minutes he walked away, disappointed.
I wondered what went through her head at that moment, to be treated like a park mascot because of her clothing. Did she ever reconsider what she’d wear to amusement parks? Or did she not have a choice anyway? There’s your thought for Valentine’s Day.

Stay behind mommy.

We were coming home from the park about an hour ago and my wife remarked with a chuckle, “Oh, I saw a mom bug carrying her baby on her back over there.” Of course, the bug geek in me would not let such news go unchecked, so I went back to look for the pair.

I’m not so sure that it’s a mom bug with her kid; I’m more convinced that this is a mating pair. But who would know better than What’s That Bug?, the awesome database of insects and creatures that people all over the world submit their photos and inquiries to (the most infamous inquiry of course being the Potato Bug (or Jerusalem Cricket)). So I sent my findings and I’m waiting to hear back.

In the meantime, my wife and I were laughing at the theory that it was a mom with her kid. I shook my head and said, “Man, what a way to see the town.” I mean, having to hold your mom’s hand in public is one thing. But having to stick your butts together and have her drag you around backwards while she goes shopping? Dang.