Saturday, February 23, 2008


So I finally make the drive back up to Morfus this weekend and decided that in the midst of my procrastination, I would give you a rundown of my home-home. Now, keep in mind that the area I grew up in is different than the rest of the tiny town. I checked how many people are in Moorpark and it's just over 32,000 people. It's becoming richer, nicer and is still surrounded by lots of nice green farmland. If you're even MORE interested (which I know you are), check it out!

But, if you don't know, I grew up in a predominantly Mexican neighborhood where we are the only Asian family in the whole area. Our "area" spans mostly within a one-chunk square of Morfus. I'd say it's a 4-block by 5-block area; small but it makes up about 40% of our school demographic. Yes. I think each house holds a huge family or two. Also, I think the city is trying to eradicate the Mexicans in the area so that they can renovate the area and build more million-dollar homes. No joke, they recently built "low-income housing" on my street and the price tag started at $400,000! "Low-income" my ass! It's also kind of funny because you can obviously tell which houses are new: they're two-story houses. Everyone has a 1-story house.

Here's the rundown:

1. It was not safe growing up in it. The liquor stores down the street were held at gun-point, and I remember once the owner's son ended up getting shot in the head. So tragic. Though, it is A LOT safer now, seriously.
2. We couldn't play after dark when we were younger because...well, see #1.
3. My friends could never spend the night at my house because their parents thought my area was "too dangerous."
4. Our neighbor's parties are way too loud and go way too late.
5. Mariachi bands exist and are frequent at these said parties.
6. Our cramped, 1-story house is right on the corner of the block, so we have a huge brick wall that has been graffitied more than I can remember (by the local gang(s) and whatnot). There are so many layers of paint on it that it has started to crack and "peel" can see the original brick UNDER all the layers of paint now.
7. The ice cream men put their stands by our house so the kids litter their wrappers in our front yard.
8. Someone threw poisoned meat into our backyard and poisoned my dog...she almost died.
9. We've been the subject of bullying, to say the least.
10. Cops are useless here.
11. They have the occasional drag race...though not as much anymore.
12. People stop traffic in the middle of the street where they start a full-on conversation with someone watering their lawn. Kinda fun, but often annoying when you're in a rush.
13. Our own neighbors have robbed our house. Not cool.
14. They blast loud music from their low-riders (yes, the stereotype lives on).
15. The 4th of July lasts for about a whole month here. Firecrackers are going off every night and on the actual 4th of July, there are different areas that set off those huge fireworks at different times so the police are racing from one location to the next as people scatter and hide. It's pretty amusing and awesome to watch. Though, I swear they get the illegal fireworks from Mexico, no joke.
16. Christmas lights are never taken down. Ever.
17. There's a house that we call "The Jesus House" because their entire lawn is overtaken by religious statues and colored lights (at night, of course.).
18. We still have "alleys." Yes, alleys with a pitbull that can jump over a 10-foot brick wall! I never ran so fast in my LIFE!
19. Fuck Homeowners Alliance. We can decorate our houses however we want. Actually, a lot of the run-down homes are much nicer now because (and seriously, this isn't to be racist) a lot of the Mexicans are the gardeners that work up in the hills (the richer/nicer parts).
20. We have our own gang: MPLS. I think they've pretty much disappeared by now though.
21. The local shops have the BEST tamales and meats. Seriously, I didn't realize how good our Mexican food was until I left MP.
22. My house is 1,000 square feet. It is very small and very cramped for 5 people and 2 dogs. People don't believe me when I say that I have a small house, but it turns out I do.
23. The Ralph's supermarket a couple blocks away used to be Hugh's supermarket and the Longs Drugstore next to it used to be Thrifty's, which had the best icecreams ever. We used to walk to the store almost every day since we only had one car (which my dad took to work).
24. We used to do our laundry at the laundromat near the superstore. We would wander around looking for coins as we waited with my mom.
25. Chris and Cody were my brothers across the street. All 4 of us used to rollerblade or bikeride around town, collecting recyclables and usually go get icecream and visit the pet store in the small shopping center. That was the best summer ever.

So there, I hope that's a simple description of what home is like. I'm sure that sometime in the future, I'll give more detailed descriptions of my favorite memories of home and what makes it feel like home. Even though this probably isn't the most ideal place to live, it's comfortable and I know my way around it.

Little known fact about me: I used to have a Chola accent. Usually it came out when I was angry and yelling obscenities, but it was there. No, I can't show you really because I can't just turn it on and off, but that's what I've been told. It's not as prominent anymore since I've been surrounded by UC kids these past 4 years.

And as a sidenote, out of all the kids who acted like such hardcore gangsters in high school, I was probably the one who most likely could have been as such. But I wasn't, so stop acting all "hard" because you look like an idiot.

*Here's the best picture I could find of our front yard and street. Obviously, Irvin is so excited to be visiting my hometown. Ooh, and that's my dog Chibi!


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