The dead-tree San Francisco Examiner published a piece of La Lengua propaganda last weekend which shines a spotlight on rebel comandante Burrito Justice and his effort to establish La Lengua as an autonomous zone independent from both Bernal Heights and the Mission District.
Upon learning of the Examiner’s plan to glorify the La Lengua separatists, Bernalwood picked up our red hotline phone to begin immediate summit talks with comandante Burrito Justice. These were summit talks in the most literal sense; lacking a coherent agenda, we met at the summit of Bernal Hill for a candid exchange of views on such matters as the economic impact of rising energy input prices, current prospects for Middle East peace in light of recent quasi-democratic uprisings, the viral popularity of Justin Bieber, and preferred menu options at Taqueria Can-Cun.
But back to the Examiner. Here’s what they had to say about La Lengua, and the rebel leader who defined its autonomous identity:
Welcome to La Lengua, the Mission district-Bernal Heights microhood that needed a name. Yes, that’s right, it’s Spanish for “the Tongue,” a reference to the district’s shape, its preponderance of eateries serving tongue meat and the active imagination of the dude behind the Burrito Justice blog.
“It started off sort of tongue-in-cheek,” he said, recalling how the inside joke about the neighborhood’s nickname began circulating San Francisco’s lively blog scene about two years ago.
La Lengua is the area west of Bernal Heights Park and east of Noe Valley, the narrow stretch between Mission and Guerrero streets, bordered by 24th and 30th streets on the north and south, respectively.
The blogger, who asked that we only refer to him as JohnnyO in order to maintain his behind-the-scenes status, said he grew tired of people incorrectly calling his neighborhood Noe Valley, Bernal Heights or the Outer Mission. So he and his friends decided they’d give the area a new name.
“This is a grass-roots thing. I had no motive except that I live here, and I think that it needed a name,” JohnnyO said. But then, something happened — people in real life actually starting calling it La Lengua.
Read the whole piece, right here.
UPDATE: CBS 5 did a piece about Burrito Justice and the Rise of the La Lenguans during last night’s broadcast. Watch it right here.
PHOTO: Rebel leader Burrito Justice/JohnnyO, photographed by Telstar Logistics