Monday, April 27, 2009

if you speak spanish, you like your parks for playing soccer & drinking champagne

I'd noticed the bilingual no soccer signs in Silverlake's Bellevue Park before. They are placed on the fences around the 2 almost-never-in-use baseball diamonds. These baseball fields are part of the effort to redesign Bellevue and kill off the pick-up soccer scene (e.g. large boulders and picnic tables strategically placed to break up open patches of grass).

Today I was struck by the fact that only a few of the signs in the park are bilingual. Most, in fact, are only in English. Apparently, if you are Anglo, you throw your trash around, prefer go carts, will play golf just about anywhere, and need to be reminded to pick up after your dog.

But the following instructions are given in Spanish: NO soccer se permite aquí & No Bebidas Alcoholicas.

The former directive is illustrated by a stick figure kicking a soccer ball, the latter (incredibly) is illustrated by a champagne glass - there are even bubbles spilling over its left lip. I like to think someone has chalked in a balón at the base of the glass on the left, but I think it's just the remnants of a sticker.

Apparently, si hablas español, you have the uncontrollable impulse to combine cocktail & ball.


  1. I'm surprised they don't have signs for dancing or being loud too...

    Jennifer, I discovered your blog recently. Sweet! I'm an aspiring soccer/culture writer (yeah, another one) who'll be writing more on the WPS in the future. I hope we can link up on a few things ... Best,
    -Cyrus Philbrick

  2. I'm curious if the park management (or whoever it was) would have gone to such lenghts if it was pickup (gridiron-) football games going on.

  3. In the Pico/Union area:

    This is in a little triangular park in the middle of three streets. I doubt anyone would actually try to play soccer there, but need to be absolutely sure, I guess.

  4. Having played a pickup game amongst Spaniards in the Frankfurt airport at 4am waiting for a RyanAir flight, si hablas español claro que bebes hasta las narices!

  5. If you were Spanish-speaking and lived in Los Angeles, would you refer to it as soccer or fútbol?

  6. if you only spoke spanish, then fútbol, most of the time. but lots of people go back and forth, and that shows in how and when people use the words fútbol, football, and soccer. it's pretty fluid. you see that in those signs, even - there's one that says 'no soccer/se permite aqui."

  7. Looks more like a Martini glass than a Champange flute. Good points though.

    My pick-up game got kicked off a field recently. We were sharing it with the arm-ball folks and they got mad at us because we they were kicked off too,


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