Brown people in white snow among white people with dark hearts, warm magic underwear!
I am a sucker for snowpeople of the Hispanic persuasion. I’m especially a sucker for my Latin snowpeople hailing from the state of Utah. Brown people in white snow among white people with dark hearts, warm magic underwear, and 3.2% beer. Talk about an overcoming adversity. That’s why it’s great to see guys like Jesse Martinez crushing the rail game all over the “Industry” state.
Reminds me of a summer when I housesat for my brother in the heart of the Wasatch. Some Saturday morning, I’m greeted with a knock at the front door. At his house, with no less than three temples within a square-mile radius, I was pretty sure that, as the lone confirmed heathen in that mile radius, whoever the fuck was knocking was knocking for my salvation.
Fuck it, turn the TV up.
Another knock, louder, more urgent.
Fuck it, turn the TV all the way up.
Full scale banging on the door ensues. Enough to startle or enrage.
With only the option of putting on porn at full blast or answering the door, for whatever reason, I chose the latter. Hand on the doorknob, count to three, open quickly and hit ‘em with my opener:
“You guys wanna talk about JEEEEE-ZUSSSS???”
The best defense is a good offense, right? Next question, had I gotten there, was which Catholic Saint had the best ass. The right answer would have been Mary Magdalene but…
Nary an evangelist in sight. I was dumbfounded, a sea of juvenile eyes upon me. Before me I found an entire baseball team of Mexican kids in full gear with a “Gracias Señor [Retracted]” cake, a twelver of Negra Modelo and a hefty bottle of El Jimador.
“Oh no!” Moaned a pudgy kid. “I think he joined the church!” Turns to his homie, “Te dije que lo iban a agarrar, mormones pendejos…”
Turns out, only dude in the ‘hood to donate money to the spring baseball fundraiser that year was my brother, recently relocated from the Northwest and happily an outsider to his LDS neighbors.
Rewind to March. Crew of kids were selling candy. The ultramarathoning, 150-snow-days-a-year, vertically inclined backcountry hardass that is my brother could give a fuck about some Kit Kats. As he later recounted, he asked little dudes how the sale was going.
Not good, answered the pudgiest kid in the crew. Our English ain’t so good. The church people only give money to church people. We sold a few down by the college, but we got all this left, flashes a coupla hundred candy bars at him. Season starts soon. Sponsor from last year, dude from the taquería, got deported. Kid over there, plays shortstop, that’s his nephew. No sponsor to get our uniforms made this year. We’re mostly related, all of our parents are from the same two towns, Acaponeta and Huajicori.
Bro asks how much uniforms were. Some nominal amount, less than a full snow rig. Closes the door. Comes back with a check for double the amount. Tells kids to stay in school, not to take no shit from nobody. Don’t eat all the fucking candy, especially you fatty, yeah you, fat shit, I know baseball’s not exercise, but damn, have some self-respect. Nods to the den mother chaperoning the team, good luck, vayan con Dios, and closes the door.
Back to my summer Saturday. Turns out the team of little sluggers from Los Estados Unidos Mexicanos had bested their Cache Valley competition for the under-12 title. The parents wanted to thank their sponsor; they’d made some stylie uniforms. The team name? The “L.N.” Dodgers.
“¿L.N.? Isn’t it L.A.?” I asked. No, they answered. L.N. means Logan-Nayarit. Sick!
They totally confused me for my brother, but the gesture, unforgettable. I offered a drink to the parents, some cake to the kids. They declined, just stoked that I was stoked. Little fat kid looked at me as they left: “don’t eat all the fucking cake, mister.”
The element in common between JM’s season recap, the L.N. Dodgers, and housesitting? That family tip.
JM’s short flick is produced by hermano (¿o primo?) Edson Ramirez. And while I’m not gonna lie, I’d need to be pretty fucked up to be feeling this soundtrack, the guitarwork is by Jesse’s other bro (¿o primo?), David.
Snow’s currently flying here in the Sierra. Here’s to rolling this 2016-2017 with familia like the Martinez crew and the L.N. Dodgers!