Michaela From Safeway: i work at Gelson's now. you like my Santa hat i'm wearing all month of December long?
me: i'm just glad i'm as far away from the farmlands of Salinas as possible.
Michaela From Safeway: same. i keep my memories close to the vest, this Safeway bib here i wear. i keep my memories Los Angeles. my dad went to St. Cyril's, he died the night of the junior-high prom dancing to "La Bamba".
Avo Babian: so is this where the date is taking place? the group date?
Michaela From Safeway: see that's the thing. as an EMPLOYEE i won't be wearing the Santa hat in solidarity with my fellow workers. as a CUSTOMER at Gelson's i'll wear the Santa hat cos it's fun and festive. working conditions vs. whimsy.
me: Avo, this is Lucio's girlfriend Michaela From Safeway.
Avo: i'm guessing From Safeway is her official city-hall last name.
Michaela From Safeway: wait till you get me after 11. wait till you see me after 11 when i get the closing keys. i put all manner on my head: reindeer ears, Mrs. Claus ears, elf ears with gold-dust pixie dust and silver sprinkles.
me: yeah but that last one is her cosplay uniform, has nothing to do with Christmas. i've seen her on the cosplay field, Lucio is a lucky man.
Michaela From Safeway: i've been farmed out, passed around, and forgotten about in this world of hell. the keys to surviving this life are a short memory and tall heels. oh hello, ring you up?
Eye Luggage: i wish. this is my friend from the band Lebanon Hanover.
Avo: well hello.
Larissa: sadness is rebellion.
Eye: we've been debating whether her sound is goth enough.
Michaela From Safeway: i mean her name is Larissa ICEGLASS for fuck sake. you two are lucky, you can cool off with an ice cube, i have to take my chances with these Crespi scuzzes.
Michaela From Safeway: these are the things that break souls after so long a time. i had a best friend for 15 years Ethicca. we reveled and rebelled in our Mexican heritage, she had 100%, i had 15% so we were the same. we both bought corner chorizo at Safeway, choice cut. but it gets hard as the world changes, as you lose touch. when i finally contacted her again finding her on a whim on Instagram, she was DIFFERENT. she was a professor of ethics at the newest UC campus in Merced. i was a dish bitch. she REQUIRED that when corresponding with her to use the proper pronouns and to see everything through the colonialist-oppression lens ALWAYS AT ALL TIMES. i don't know how to do that so she dropped me. look i get it, the world sucks and you gotta remake it in your own image, in your young image, but the road to justice is paved with suicide and silence.
Maria LaRosa at the high-school weather desk: warm storm. you can tell when an electrical storm is approaching, when it's fast coming, when there's gonna be hot lightning and sexual thunder with the wet rain: when it's a grey overcast sky and it's 90 degrees Fahrenheit...
David Beckham in the AYSO high-school soccer stands: i mean i'm practically the Prime Minister of the UK at this point, right? who else is there in Britian but me? England was NOT ROBBED.
Kane: i had too much sugar in my system. i thought i could fly.
David Byrne in the music room: leitmotif, eh?
Drew Torres in the Crespi locker room doing leg curls: on Degrassi i look like Cristiano Ronaldo as a fat-faced teenager.
Boc on the Crespi track: look up in the sky, it's seeing it through a weird different lens, the sky is wearing crisp clear grey glasses as the puffy clouds approach. we gotta do something about this track, there are a thousand bird ponds around each bend and oval turn, a thousand little lakes, but the poor birds can't bathe and drink cos there are dirty pink grannie panties in the ponds!!! we gotta EXPAND, people!!!
Laertus's dad: the coolest thing in the world is when there's a FIERCE FIERCE FIERCE lightning-and-thunder rainstorm outside and the power is still on inside...
PG&E on the only Crespi payphone booth on the entire campus: you know you could always just hang up...
Santa by the theater-production's manger: for future reference, holiday specials in prison aren't very cheery. you hear that, Sam & Max and Teen Titans GO?!!!
Tatiana sucking down a silver Hi-C punch until it enters a crinkly wrinkly black hole and disappears: vaginal rejuvenation, it's not a fruit-drink box.
King Charles III at assembly: it's weird that my Coronation is on a Saturday, right? shouldn't it be on Sunday to mess with church and football?
Stallion Springs: where the Gs in California stay.
Don Lemon: i don't know about this, dude. i'm your BEST FRIEND in the whole wide fucking world but this is a little much.
T.J. Holmes: a bridge too far? pashaw, never between friends. look man all you gotta do is impersonate me on the Good Morning America set.
Don: i like that place, it's a cool little niche television studio tucked under that Times Square big-screen hidden in plain view. everyone walking by has no idea what goes on in there.
Amy Robach: tell me about it. everyone fucks in the breakroom and sometimes on the floor right up against next to the main camera so it can't angle down to catch us with its filming.
T.J.: we're brothers, Don, all THREE meanings!!! WE LOOK EXACTLY THE SAME!!!
Don: i'll do this for you. the blood of friendship still means something to me.
T.J.: thanks, blood. hey if you can fool the GMA execs i'll give you your prize: Andrew Shue.
Don Lemon: HOT DOG!!! that guy's a babe.
Amy Robach: i know, right? take it from me, the 100 Black Men of Atlanta is the BEST 100 Black Men of America.
Janice from Friends in the den.
Janice: SilverHawks had to have an educational lesson at the end of each episode or the space violence couldn't be funded. the mime kid with the creepy bird noises, was he abandoned at a circus? is he a circus orphan? they had to make Melodia a bad guy cos Cyndi Lauper was controlling kids' minds with MTV according to the Religious Right parents. i REALLY DIDN'T WANT the cowboy to be the leader. partly metal/partly real is GHASTLY. why be a 50/50 mixture? if you're gonna give up your humanity at least do if for something cool like being fitted for a cyberbrain.
Dirg: if you're gonna let the filthy government lay hands on me for their SilverHawk experiments, I BETTER GET A SOLID METAL DICK!!!
tornado: i always occur at 7AM...
Coast Insurance: from Mexico...
Made In.........cookware, not Abyss.
Grant Achatz in home-ec class: my last name sounds like i'm gonna sneeze. food is a science. food is science in a lab. i'm Gordon Ramsay if he were French.
Gordon Ramsay with powder all over his face: it's flour. you mean me as a French bulldog ballbuster?
Grant: no, if you were sexy. i look like a Three Musketeer.
Laertus's dad: you gotta love '90s fashion, the purple mortarboards, the red-yellow-black-green-striped blouses shirts and dresses, the woolly pants, we were dressing like we were space aliens from Mars.
Jay Leno in the metalshop garage: see all those Crespi seniors in that parking lot across the street parking their yellow Porsche Boxsters next to the Gelson's brick wall to impress the girls that work and frequent there as these boys throw away their baby keychains into the gutter for a sewer clown like It to choke on? yeah see i wasn't like that in high school, i knew i had to WAIT to get my prom date in the same car as Johnny Carson's prom date. i like the CLASSIC CARS, the car Arthur drove in Arthur the '80s film. your grandfather's long Rolls Royce is even LONGER in 2022...
Takahashi: sir i am so glad you didn't turn into Leatherface.
Dirg and Mark Borchardt: Leatherface didn't get any babes, right?
Jay: he GOT all of the babes but not in the way you're thinking.
Takahashi: come on, Mr. Leno, let's talk cars!!!
Jay: nah. i'm tired of cars. i'm old. i'm too old to be playing with cars. those Porsches look like 1980s Transformers toys. you know it's really high time we as a species start making electric cars...
Michalea From Safeway: Safeway cosplay by the way is in the back room...
Eye Luggage: what were we talking about again?
Charlie Sheen: why did we film that Wall Street beach scene together?
Daryl Hannah: when i was wearing that wetsuit, i felt like i was on the Splash set again, i LOVED working on that movie.
Charlie Sheen: i had no chance from the start, right? you've been gunning for Neil Young since you first bought "The Loner".
Daryl Hannah: i like musicians...
Eye: La Bamba and go.
losmovies: i know i know, i'm your LIFESAVER WEBSITE, right? Spanish is the true global language. there's a catch tho: it's losmovies.ru, i don't know whether it's run by the Russian people or Putin...
Laertus: WOODY WOODPECKER!!! okay? right? i mean, like, wow. when i was watching this the LAST THNG i'd EVER thought i'd see was Woody Woodpecker. kudos to this brilliant life story.
Dirg: what exactly does bamba mean?
Ritchie Valens: no one knows. basically it means fool, idiot, simpleton, what the native Caribbean people would call Dirg here.
Lou Diamond Phillips: this was my FIRST MOVIE, now THAT's a hell of a debut!!! i was destined for great things.
Esai Morales: i'm not talking about Caprica. i am the comedy relief in this movie. look at me barrel down the empty California state highways on dusty roads on my motorcycle in my motorcycle gang all bad ass.
Takahashi: cool hog!!!
Jay Leno: i don't do bikes. i love my wife for 80 years.
Esai: thanks, ese. it's a Harley made in Tijuana. join a bike gang? i INVENTED bike gangs!!! i invented motorcycle gangs fighting each other at an In N Out Burger. i look like the Terminator.
Ritchie: nah man, you look like that dude in the bike gang from Mask, chico, the Cher movie.
Elizabeth Pena: i'm no puta. for the record, i was raped. good god this is why i started drinking.
Rosanna DeSoto: i'm the mother? all i'm saying is i'm old enough to be Elizabeth Pena's YOUNGER sister...
NorCal: surprising, right? but this is where the Mexican Revolution began.
Melissa Reynolds: the Mexicans in Canada were a little-known band of motorcycle bandits.
mom: it's 1957!!! look alive, people!!! get up, gente!!! these oranges ain't gonna pick themselves. don't worry, the Mexican people are a proud people, we know how to WAIT, we'll be owning these trees before too long.
Laertus: the opening sequence was BRILLIANT. i actually thought what the audience is seeing is Ritchie's fatal plane crash at the end of his life and young Ritchie is seeing this dark horrible vision of his own death high up in the sky, the plane crash, as a recurring night-sweat fright he can't get out of his head and bed which troubles him throughout his living. a traumatizing motif throughout the film. a fate fraught with fright.
Eye: it's the Pacoima plane crash that took his grandfather and childhood playmate friend, babe.
Lucio: that schoolyard is SO St. Cyril's. down to the blue short shorts everyone wore boys and girls, the jump rope skip and the tetherball circle. the chalk hopscotch boxes. the asphalt and the white starched collared shirts. poor 3rd-grade fat kid playing tetherball squashed by the plane debris.
Bob Morales: orale. hey villagers i'm here to check who's queer and who's normal. hey boy, look into the outdoor shower of that naked chica over there, sneak a peek, that's not a shower curtain that's a corn stalk from the field. god i miss doing this, you can't do this in the can. you missed your older brother, didn't you?
Ritchie: yeah, there's nobody on this hill. what was the joint like?
Bob: jail is jail. it's fine. it was cool, it was a nice time, it's like going on vacation, you know?
Ritchie: hey whatever you do, don't fuck Elizabeth Pena, i was kinda hoping we'd get married, we're both sweet good-natured innocent souls who live in a double wide.
Bob: she already lost her virginity to me the INSTANT she laid eyes on my mustache, my white muscle shirt, my rugged jaw, and my testicles in these jeans. does it still count if you do it standing up fully clothed?
San Fernando High School: where show-biz dreams go to die.........and then they get resurrected again. that's the thing, you gotta be near Hollywood in proximity.
The Silhouettes' lead singer: who are you? some filthy farmworker?
Ritchie: look at this tiny amp and curly phone-cord i carry around everywhere with me, it's the color orange like the oranges i USED to pick. i ain't no orange picker. look at me SING FOR THE FIRST TIME!!! i'm already top-40-radio-polished with a clear English voice no accent!!! it's a miracle!!! i come from the part of Mexico known as California, boi!!! you know, surfers and shit. by the way why should i listen to you, you play the SAX!!! that's fucking lame, holmes, no lead singer plays the saxophone. except that cool dude from Queensryche.
Bob: i'm jealous of all the attention my little brother Ritchie is receiving. i start brawls everywhere cos that was the only way i survived in prison.
Woody Woodpecker: where are the cartoons of me that Bob Morales worked on? that he storyboarded? those would have been rad and full of gangsters. i definitely would have held a gun, maybe a rifle or something. a knife?
Sam Anderson: i'm that guy you see all the time on that CBS show. that boring show you watch with your grandpa on the couch. Picket Fences or something. i don't want my daughter seeing a Hispanic boy but i live in California which is counterintuitive.
Ritchie: i'll prove it to you, sir, i'll prove i can be a success, that i'm good enough for your daughter.........wait a minute i'm not doing this for YOU, i'm doing this for ME. i'm gonna become a legend, you're just gonna become a father.
Ritchie: you're gonna change my name?
Joey Pants: yeah we gotta make you palatable to a white audience or you won't get that fast money, that millionaire scratch, you know? this is the ultimate get-rich-quick scheme. add a T to Richie and shorten Valenzuela to Valens.
Bob: THAT'S BULLSHIT!!! YOU'RE MESSING WITH OUR AZTEC HERITAGE, WHITE BOY!!!
Ritchie: but why did Fernando Valenzuela get to keep his name?!!!
Ritchie in the studio (not podcast studio): are we done here? i've done the "Donna" song take 50 times now.
Joey Pants: THAT was the one, got it, Ritch, it's in the can. that take had you singing with a voice so pure it didn't have ONE TRACE of Mexican in it, not one hint of foreign, you have a totally American voice now, kid!!!
Rick Dees: Ted Qullin? nobody knows who that is, I'M RICK DEES, BITCH!!! i'm the biggest thing in music right now in 1987!!!
at the only payphone booth in the entire movie.
Bob: the funniest scene in the whole film is when i razz on Ritchie Valens for his song "Donna".
Ritchie: yes, "Donna" is a staple in Johnny Rockets and '50s cafes everywhere, but you, dear brother, just saw it as me being a weak man who couldn't get any poontang, wanting some pussy and going about it the wrong way. THAT WAS HILARIOUS. i poured my heart and soul into that song, i was heartfelt and sincere. it's like thinking the Beatles song "All You Need Is Love" is about a quickie.
Danielle von Zerneck: would you like to neck in the back of a Cadillac like Wednesday vampires? "Donna", wow, not many girls get a song written about them that becomes a doo-wop classic over tall glass milkshakes, that was pretty rad for me.
at the brothel in Tijuana.
Ritchie: see this is where it gets sticky. i didn't CREATE "La Bamba" i composed it. i rock-n-roll rockified it up. but without me the song wouldn't have become popular around the world.
at the curandero.
curandero: you like my shack in the desert? it has two stories. the right one and the wrong one.
Ritchie: it's ironic, right? i am TERRFIED of airplanes and i die in an airplane. what kind of justice is that? you tell me, was my life worth it?
curandero: yes because music is bigger than life, it lasts longer. you will be sacrificed to become a music martyr. life is like a snake shedding its skin, constantly evolving, constantly changing from this form into that form. which form is THE form? only the snake knows. life is a dream basically.
Ritchie: great, i can't sleep cos of my nightmares. got any Nyquil?
curandero: here, wear this talisman around your neck, if you keep it on you'll be safe from the air. just don't board any goose planes. Mexican folklore is way more interesting than science.
Joey Pants and Ritchie on the plane.
Joey Pants: here, kid, drink down this fifth of vodka. i'm gonna unbuckle my seatbelt and give this Smirnoff vodka flask to the pilot...
Brian Setzer on the Crespi stage: Greykid is the coolest Stray Cat i know. my hair is bigger than the Empire State Buildng, let's just leave it at that. I drank the vodka, my name is seltzer.
Ritchie: i've had enough of you, hermano. i flourished my talent, i didn't squander it. you had talent, too.
Bob: you rock, i draw the bird. tweet tweet tweet rockin' robin. IT'S A SETUP, RITCHIE!!! look at this black-and-white photo of our father, our papito, our padre, he was a war hero, he was in the Space Marines!!! HE SET ME UP!!! he had it so ONLY YOU would reap the rewards and have the life and I GOT NOTHING!!! it's a conspiracy. our dad works for the CIA making those A.I. robots that will take over the world in the future.
Ritchie: YOU RUINED YOUR OWN LIFE!!! DON'T BLAME ANYBODY ELSE!!! you're a drunk and you're drunk now. i can punch you now, i'm not skinny anymore, i'm fat like you.
Ritchie: great, nice going, Bob, you broke my talisman, you've murdered me in the future.
The Big Bopper: you know i'm the Big Bopper because i only say my signature phrase in my signature accent. signatures not autographs. Clear Lake? it's snowing as fuck up in here!!!
Ritchie Valens: can you believe my life was determined BY A FUCKING COIN FLIP?!!! i mean how cosmically stupid is that? hey guys, this raging snowstorm is looking pretty bad, maybe we don't pilot a single-engine biplane through it blind? jus sayin, what do i know, i'm just a kid.
Buddy Holly: don't worry, kid, take a valium, they're new.
Ritchie: you know in situations like these my manager would always tell me not to fly, to keep my feet on the ground, to drink some vodka instead. or maybe if you give me a wrench i could fix the heating system on the bus...
Mario takes off his mushroom cap and begins to cry. the tears wet his handlebar motorcycle mustache.
Mario: Ritchie Valens never played video games.
Prince: i told you Minnesota is a bad place to go. them bad lands over there, baby. why do you think i was always trying to get out of there? those Thousand Lakes will do you no good if they're frozen. they can't help you, baby.
Donna Ludwig: HOW DO YOU THINK I FEEL?!!! i was all prepared to have the life of Priscilla Presley!!! big mansion in the South, Rolls Royce airplanes on the roof. all of that is SUDDENLY snatched away from me in a second!!! i was getting Ritchie's guitar hand prepared with the autopen for all his many autographs. Beethoven indeed.
Axl Rose: hey this final procession all the limos driving through the cemetery is like our video for "Don't Cry".
Ritchie Valens: i was 17 when i died. I WAS SEVENTEEN FUCKING YEARS OLD WHEN I DIED!!! i mean COME ON!!! that is some DANK DARK DESTINY. THIS was my journey?!!! THIS is what it was supposed to be?!!! what is the POINT?!!! i never experienced drinking a beer. and voting i guess. and playing video games. and driving a car legally. and one day overcoming my fear of flying and piloting my own plane alone across the planet. at least i never went into the army like my pops.
Bob on another hill: RITCHIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! this is gonna become a GIF on a T-shirt, huh?
me: THIS MOVIE IS EERILY MY EXACT LIFE. my mom's name is Concepcion, i never learned Spanish despite my mom speaking fluent Salvadoran Spanish, i was strictly an English boy. also, the brand new house in the Hollywood hills Ritchie buys his family with his first sound check---that is his first music check, check for making music---is the same house i lived in in Van Nuys, same covered porch in the backyard, same marble fireplace. i'm an artist trying to make it with a poor elderly mother from the barrio. g'night folks.
Michaela From Safeway wearing her blue visor: who has the more baked brain, the baker or the baked? who has the more metal mind, the musician or the robot? like Donna Ludwig before me i'm left to wonder what could have been. how my life could have been SO DIFFERENT if only certain people HAD LIVED A LITTLE BIT LONGER. as i plop another scoop of carrot fried rice into this plastic saucer. Francese rolls extra, that pale bread kneaded by the cold hands of cold monks.
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