Cruizin'

1948
and the first lowrider
glides
off the driveway and onto the Boulevard
and that first lowriding, zoot suit wearing, vato buey
turned on his radio to hear this song...

It's a fine night for cruizin'

y mi tio con sus
raybans y sus cool drapes y su pompador,
parquió su '56
outside my abuelita's house
and had his huisa take a picture of him
striking a firme pose in front of his chingon ride.
and under those big baggy pants of his
you couldn't tell that he had left one of his legs
in Korea...that he had sacrificed it for the
Amerikan buey

It's a fine night for cruizin'

and so they cruised.
cruised down central, down whittter, down king.
they danced mambos and jitterbugs,
ate monster burgers and frosty freeze shakes,
went to the drive ins;
and they had kids too, a whole mess a kids
and those kids grew up to drive
forest green monticarlos and deep purple
oldsmobile cutlasses with the metallic finish;
long before any tinted window laws came out,
before any minimum number of inches off the ground laws,
before la placa started carrying rulers
when car shows were still legal throughout all of
Aztlan;
and on a summer night the Chicanada would say...

It's a fine night for cruizin'

and so they cruised
slow and low,
especially over the speed bumps.
but then slow and low got twisted by
forked tongues into describing La Raza
themselves and not their cars they drove
and the whole pinche system came down on lowriding...
but what were we to do?
there were no plazas in this place...
no plazas with the big fountains in the middle
and the benches for the pretty girls to sit on,
no plazas in the melting pot,
just big wide streets and the most
chingon
carruchas
in the universe.

It's a fine night for cruizin'
--Marc David Pinate


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