El Guapo in DC

I am El Guapo. The most Guapo man in all of DC. Mucho Amor

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Bienvenidos to mi barrio!

“Paul, I’m not going to live in this sketchy neighborhood!”

“It’s a great neighborhood, honey. You just need to be a little patient.”

“I don’t want to be fucking patient Paul! I don’t want to live in this god-damned neighborhood!”

In the last several years I have seen many couples make it into my lovely barrio of Columbia Heights. Yes, it is mine. Many have stayed and have come to love the “eccentricities” that come with life in the ghetto. El Guapo welcomes them.

I welcome their Burberry coats, grey Volvos, and Asian babies. Mi barrio is not so bad once you give it a chance.

That man laying on the grassy part of the sidewalk? That’s Paco. Don’t mind him. He’s just resting his eyes after a hard night of drinking. He will wake up in the morning and call you an expletive when you walk by. In time you will smile, shake your head and say: Oh, that crazy Paco. Where will he pass out next?

That tall woman who wears short skirts in the middle of the winter? That’s not a woman my Chanel wearing friend. That’s one of our local transvestites. They mean you no harm. If you’re lucky, she will comment about how she can handle your husband in ways he has only dreamed. In time you will say: Oh that crazy local transvestite. What will she say next?

Are you thirsty after a long day of house hunting in a city that has priced almost todo el mundo out of the trendy areas? Don’t worry my friends. In Columbia Heights there are two liquor stores on every block. You will soon find your palate adapting to the many varieties of malt liquor. Just don’t think you’ll be able to buy a single beer in our neighborhood. Our very own Adrian Fenty made sure of this. He felt it was better for alcoholics to buy 6 beers instead of just one. Gracias Adrian Fenty!

Are you curious about the “Fuck YU” that is spray painted on the wall and the sidewalk? No te preocupes con eso. That is just the way the neighborhood kids welcome you to their neighborhood. Your tax dollars will go towards funding the area schools. Who knows? With your help, in five years, that welcome message may just be spelled correctly.

Pupusas? What is a pupusa? The pupusa is a gourmet delight that is sure to make you forget that low carb diet that is constipating you. Remember Paco? Did you see his mustache? Do you think that his mustache would be so shiny if it weren’t for the $1 pupusas he eats daily? Claro que no! You can have a complete meal of delicious Central American cuisine for far less than you pay for that Starbucks in your hand.

No, that isn’t a cat silly gringo! That’s a rat! Yes, of course you can feed it. Just please don’t give them any soda. The 1968 riots are rumored to have been started by a couple of hyperactive rats. You’ll get used to them. Are you wondering why the rats in Dupont aren’t as big and shiny? Three syllable word. Rhymes with Mumusa. Give up? Si, these rats eat the leftover pupusas. The one you just saw knocking over a Geo Metro with its tail can do tricks for food.

That noise you hear? That’s called Reggaeton. In time, you will be able to fall asleep to the peaceful chants of Daddy Yankee, Orishas, and Don Omar. A ella le gusta la gasolina. Do not worry. We turn the boom boxes off around 3 AM.

El Guapo welcomes you to the neighborhood of Columbia Heights! Bienvenidos. If you have any questions regarding ghetto/barrio/favela living, please do not hesitate to e-mail me directly.

Mucho Amor,

El Guapo


At 1:37 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

El Guapo, I love you. Your writing is wonderful. Your spirit of expression is precious. A great diversionary read for a gringo girl like me. You give me much laughter and reflection. Thank you.

At 4:07 AM, Blogger Salon de The said...

I enjoy reading your post. It made me giggle.

At 9:19 AM, Blogger Reya Mellicker said...

You are such a GREAT writer, and you really are the most Guapo guy in DC.

I lived in the Mission in San Francisco for a long, long time. Your description of Columbia Heights makes me very homesick for those days and that place.

At 10:02 AM, Blogger green_canary said...

I have a very big crush on El Guapo. Un crushe grande.

At 11:06 AM, Blogger Christopher Robin said...

I had some lovable characters living in and around one of the buildings I lived in one. I miss them, somehow they added an indescribable colour to the area.

At 11:14 AM, Blogger RoarSavage said...

Sounds fun! Maybe I'll switch ghettoes. How's the parking?

At 11:32 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What the hell is with all of these people kissing El Guapo's ass here?

All of this brown-nosing and eyelash-batting has caused me to lose my breakfast, which angers me a great deal because my breakfast was quite enjoyable.

"Oh El Guapo, you are muy sexy!"

"Oh El Guapo, I would like to give you a reach-around while doing a tap dance in your honor!"

Please, people.

How can you fail to see the real star of this post? Are you blind?

It is quite obvious to any thinking, reasoning, red-blooded woman that Paco clearly steals the show here.

Personally, El Guapo just doesn't do it for me. I would rather get a moustache ride from Paco any day.

Who wants to listen to El Guapo brag about his lustrous chest hair or his ability to make savory tacos?

Not me. I'd rather get tequila-flavored kisses from Paco as we nestle in our cardboard box. (Sure, it's not much, but it's OURS.)

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm off to hitch my wagon to a star.

Paco, mama's comin' home.

At 12:09 PM, Blogger El Guapo in DC said...

Anonymous is right. His urine stained black jeans offer something I just can't. Anonymous, that was beautiful.

Gente, plenty of parking in Columbia Heights. We all take the bus.

Mucho Amor,

El Guapo

At 12:17 PM, Anonymous kbean said...

If you're ever away so long you get homesick, this streaming video of a block near the Giant will remind you of home:

At 12:42 PM, Blogger Divine Calm said...

Reggaeton? Not my fave. Any cumbia or bachata playing? Those are better, and I would be sure to visit. (Of course, salsa would be too much to hope for...)

At 1:44 PM, Blogger always write said...

Sold! I'll start packing this weekend.

At 2:51 PM, Blogger Butterfly Fox said...

Senorito Guapito,

Found you via Waiter. I also found Senorita Namaste via you.

Just wanted to give a GRANDE muchas gracias to your culito for some great and entertaining words!

By the way, what happened to Namaste? I am not able to link onto her site any longer.

My worry is that she may have been abducted by the "Old-Guy", or perhaps she eloped with, "Scientist".

In either case, if you know where she is, let her know that a reader is rather lost without her talented and lovely ability to share such great thoughts on life, love, and everything else in between.


At 4:50 PM, Blogger Rhinestone Cowgirl said...

Awesome! Will you provide a guided tour if I move to your barrio, El Guapo? I must see these sights for myself.

At 5:18 PM, Blogger DC Cookie said...

Are you sure the rats aren't 'in' the pupusas?

At 6:02 PM, Blogger Dawn said...

I lived in Columbia Heights one summer while I was doing an internship. In fact, I was one block from the Metro. I love reading your blog and remembering that summer. Is Paco the guy who carries a boombox and wears a yellow construction workers hat?

At 8:50 PM, Blogger El Guapo in DC said...

Actually, you are all welcome to move in with me. Maybe I'll start a carnival-like tour of my neighborhood.

Please don't make fun of pupusas. "They" will find you.

Mucho Amor,

El Guapo

At 9:25 PM, Blogger Velvet said...

Velvet won't share El Guapo with any other gringas. Well, maybe RC. But that's all.

At 11:52 PM, Blogger RoarSavage said...

Watch what you say, Guapo. Your apt might end up being an urban kabutz or wacky commune...

At 8:19 AM, Blogger Rhinestone Cowgirl said...

Pfft - I was an honorary Latina before you were even BORN, Missy.

(Okay, maybe not. But still.)

At 8:25 AM, Blogger Washington Cube said...

El Guapo as the Neighborhood Welcoming Committee. ::knock, knock::: with his little basket (from the Dollah Store) full of pupusas and rotgut and coupons for services like putting bars on your windows, a self-defense brochure and three bus passes. Gracias, El G.

At 2:57 PM, Anonymous rcr said...

Fenty's ban on singles applies only to his ward, Ward 4. There's no ban in Ward 1, where Columbia Heights is. There is a ban in MtP, but that applies only to that neighborhood, not the entire ward.

And for the record, there isn't a liquor store within a three block radius of me (14th and Columbia).

At 5:39 PM, Anonymous Duh-mension said...

Do you know what a plethora is? It's a plethora of laughter coming from the girl who is supposed to be working right now.
Thanks, El Guapo, for being my tour guide today! You are one of my favorite reads. Come visit some time.

At 5:46 PM, Anonymous Mamasita said...

Pupusas are delish and I could eat a dozen. You know, I would even share some with Paco. But where are the best in DC? Please share- this plato Salvadoreno is too good to keep the best for yourself (and Paco)

At 12:48 AM, Blogger El Guapo in DC said...

Ah, pupusas. There are many great places to eat pupusas, but El Amigo is my favorite for authentic Central American Cuisine:

3612 14TH ST NW 20010

They are a cash only establishment and speaking Spanish is helpful, but not necessary. You can point at the menu on the wall. Tell them El Guapo sent you.

Mucho Amor,

El Guapo

At 7:40 AM, Anonymous Mamasita said...

Thank you! Speaking Spanish no es un problema para mi. Soy 100% chapina.

At 9:55 AM, Blogger NewYorkMoments said...

Great--just tell me where I can get a good drink :-)

At 11:58 AM, Blogger theinebriantgrape said...

te amo el guapo!

At 8:22 PM, Blogger Steve R said...

Reggaeton until 3 am?...but, how about Spanish Catholic radio on Sunday mornings at 6 AM!!!

I thought I was hearing things when I woke up to it every Sunday in La Vega, R.D. last summer...but turns out it was just Miguel from the colmado across the street...

undoubtedly he figured listening to these programs got him clemency for drinking those 12 Presidentes the night before ;-)


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