The Santa Ana Sentinel

How to Capitalize on Culture

Posted in Opinion by Omar Ávalos Gallegos on October 18, 2011

Everyone somehow either directly or indirectly contributes to the profiting on culture, be it either as a consumer or a seller, or both.

Why then, do people who organize cultural events attempt to shield themselves and their events by saying that they’re not contributing to, capitalizing on, or selling culture?

Everyone contributes, and it doesn’t matter if it’s high or popular culture.

No specific culture or ethnic group is exempt from this. What event is not used as an excuse to sell, sell, sell? How is St. Patrick’s Day different from Cinco de Mayo or Easter from Christmas or from Día de los muertos?

These are all excuses to sell either Easter eggs or sugar skulls, or whatever there is no difference.

And of course, we live in a country that allows for capitalizing on culture, whether it be the selling of fattoush in Anaheim’s Little Arabia or at Canter’s Deli on Fairfax, or any Spanish deli or you name it.

How then, can anyone say that Día de los muertos in Santa Ana is not being sold? That is the very first impression I got from it last year, when it grew into an event for capitalizing on. Yeah, I remember what it used to be like years ago; It was more about the altars, but last year’s event grew into this monstrous event and excuse for selling culture.

My only question is why not call it what it is? Is it because it’s taboo for communists to admit that they’re capitalizing on anything?

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17 Responses

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  1. junior said, on October 19, 2011 at 6:10 am

    “Is it because it’s taboo for communists to admit that they’re capitalizing on anything?”

    Funny – and accurate as well.

  2. Gustavo Arellano said, on October 25, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    More gibberish from the local master of it–and so funny that “junior” chimes in and agrees! Birds of a feather, I swear…

  3. junior said, on October 25, 2011 at 3:48 pm

    “Everyone somehow either directly or indirectly contributes to the profiting on culture, be it either as a consumer or a seller, or both.”

    Gustavo – This is not “gibberish” – it is cold hard fact. The capitalists that you work for are part and parcel of culture.

  4. Omar Ávalos Gallegos said, on October 25, 2011 at 6:01 pm

    Well if it isn’t my blog’s top commenter / troll. How is it that this guy keeps coming back to comment with nothing but name calling?

    This guy ought to keep score and learn from me. When I found out LOOONG ago that his writing (meaning the OC Weekly and as a result, his books) was gibberish, I stopped reading it and giving it any importance LOOONG ago.

    That’s right. In the years that his little claim to fame has been published I’ve commented on it once, and (laughing) he liked it.

    Well I’ve just proven to you “tavito,” that my writing is not gibberish because in the one year that I’ve been blogging YOU are this blog’s top commenter, only beneath me. You ought to be proud. And you’ve been exposed in your comments for the megalomaniac that you are.

    So no, YOU don’t think I write gibberish because you keep coming back thinking that insulting comments will somehow phase me.

    You react because I hit the right nerves, the ones that your cohort and followers are too blind to see.

    Oh yes, Arellano is the embodiment of the saying, “En el pais de los ciegos, el tuerto es rey.” Verily, this maniacal, egotistical type that claims to speak for Mexicans is a case of the blind leading the blind.

  5. Alex D. Cortez said, on October 26, 2011 at 3:55 pm

    What hell are you talking about in this article? First you rant on how everyone is part of buying and selling of culture, and then you rant on how you dont like the dia los muertos because their in your words there selling cultural event to the masses, you like the event when it. So you dont like the organizers because they dont agree that you have basically essentialize their event into some monetary exchange or are you mad that it has been sold out? For someone that is always arguing about how we need to have latino businessman, you really contradict yourself. What I perceived from your writing is someone that is resentful towards this organization that is ultimately doing something good for the community.

    • Alex D. Cortez said, on October 26, 2011 at 3:59 pm

      your calling someone a megalomaniac, when you moderate comments, what?

      • Omar Ávalos Gallegos said, on October 26, 2011 at 6:28 pm

        It seems that I’ve upset a fanboy of Arellano’s. Well, megalomaniac is not an insult, it’s an adjective. But the choice of words that Arellano uses against me are insults. I don’t know if you’ve been reading the comments that he’s made here, or if you comprehend the difference, but let him speak for himself through his trash talk. That’s what he gets paid for.

    • Omar Ávalos Gallegos said, on October 26, 2011 at 6:24 pm

      First of all, your writing is not easy to comprehend so I’ll try to reply effectively. This is no rant, nor does the tone of it suggest that. You interpret it that way and if this is the Alex D. Cortez that I know from the past, then maybe you should stay off the grass, that may help with your writing and reading comprehension.

      • alex said, on October 26, 2011 at 10:17 pm

        oh please your reek of resentment towards the centro cultural and not just in this article. if you dont like the work they are doing over their do something about it. start your own cultural center which you think better represents our latino/mexican population, which i highly doubt its going to happen. all talk and no action. my writing might not be the best but i now megalomaniac is not a nice to say to one, look up in the dictionary. ” megalomaniac is not an insult, its an adjective” funny shit, so adjective cant be insulting? yes im a fan of gustavo’s work but my post here is an independent critique of the nonsense you write here. you should smoke some grass yourself, it might help loosen you up. if you really think what you wrote is not a rant, find some positive in this article that tells me otherwise.

      • Omar Ávalos Gallegos said, on October 26, 2011 at 10:49 pm

        You haven’t been around nor do you know what I’m up to so your accusations about me are unfounded like the others in the Arellano fan club.

        Megalomaniac is spot on, and you weren’t far off from that definition some time ago.

        El que se lleva, se aguanta.

        FYI I looked up rant and it’s synonymous with tirade. This is no tirade, it’s simply an opinion, a comment. Read your hero Arellano’s insults here and learn to tell the difference.

  6. alex said, on October 26, 2011 at 11:25 pm

    find something positive in your article your about the subject of discussion? definition of tirade:A long, angry speech of criticism or accusation. tell my how your article is otherwise.

    • Omar Ávalos Gallegos said, on October 26, 2011 at 11:59 pm

      Your’e missing the point. This piece isn’t about singing the praises of how Día de los muertos is capitalized on. Get it? There are plenty of others, more than I, out there that are hyping up the event because, face it, they stand to make a buck off of it.

      If you want to hype up the event and sing the praises of the organizers, go right ahead. That’s not what I’m about nor am I a follower of theirs. I observe and critique.

      Read this piece and get a sense of what I stand for.

      • Alex D. Cortez said, on October 27, 2011 at 8:40 am

        Your a walking contradiction! Oh I read the article and I think I have a better sense of it than you. You should let other people read it other then your friends. maybe you’ll wake up from your delusional stupor…

      • Omar Ávalos Gallegos said, on October 27, 2011 at 9:38 am

        Uh huh. Oh sure, I’m delusional, self-assuming and display “a lack of integrity” according to the Arellano fan club. All unfounded. Where’s the contradiction?

        Cortez, you want to throw around the word delusional? You’re a case of el burro hablando de orejas.

        Try keeping your head out of the clouds and your feet off the grass, then maybe, you can accuse someone of being delusional. What ever happened to all of your grand projects? “I’m going to do this, I’m going to do that bla bla bla,” did you puff those away too?

        Be assured that others besides my friends read this blog, all you have to do is count yourself and the rest of the Arellano fan club into the non friends category. I have over 7,500 hits here.

  7. Alex D. Cortez said, on October 27, 2011 at 12:21 pm

    You contradict yourself because you talk about all this and that about latinos being entrepreneurs and then you lambast the this particular organization for doing just that. get a grip of yourself and analyze that nonsense you write about. your just playing your cards figuring which avenue benefits you most, you have no integrity. im sure the only reason you put down such a great organization is because they rejected your ass, and condensing attitude.

  8. Alex D. Cortez said, on October 27, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    since im delusional and so are you, the makes us as gustavo said, “birds of a feather flock together.”

  9. Omar Ávalos Gallegos said, on October 27, 2011 at 7:00 pm

    Cortez, you make me laugh. Thanks.

    You are sure of nothing because I’ve never, never gone to them for anything. Where have you been that you’re out of touch with Santa Ana and what goes on here? What do you care?

    What I wrote was in response to what someone said about NOT selling the event in question. But it is being sold so why say that it isn’t? That is the whole reason I wrote this.

    That video was made accessible to a broader audience because of the Register’s Latino link blog so I responded to it. So what?

    As far as you equating me with you goes,

    Delusional is being against the improvements happening downtown. Delusional is thinking the current state of the downtown is someone’s “special garden.” This place still needs improvement. Delusional is trying to get musicians not to perform in the downtown. It’s not only that, it’s stupid.

    Lastly, wrong you and I don’t flock together. Wow, you’re quoting Arellano? I thought you better than that, wait… nah never mind.

    It’s been fun thanks for the laughs.


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