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Morning Brief: Rafael Agustin Memoir, Gas Prices Dip, Aaricka’s Favorite Cafes

Rafael Agustin who stands with his two hands up to his mouth, eating a cheeseburger. He's wearing a black t-shirt that reads Youth Cinema Project with white capital lettering, with an image of a white paper airplane made of a film reel.  Erick Galindo has red beard, holding a burger with his right hand. Erick is wearing black sunglasses. The partially shown ampm logo as a sign affixed to the building containing orange and light pink and pm purple and blue. The building is a beige color with the roof a pale red trim.
Rafael Agustin and Erick Galindo wax nostalgic about their immigrant childhoods memories while enjoying some tasty ampm burgers
(Brian Feinzimer
LAist )
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Good morning, L.A. It’s Thursday, August 11.

I don’t know about you all, but it seems to me that this month is flying by quickly. It might seem like that because our beloved planet Earth is actually spinning faster. Strange times.

You know what I like to think about when I’m faced with times like these? FOOD. In this newsletter, we have different sections where we’re talking about grub. Let’s talk about cheap burgers.

In his latest article for LAist, our superstar writer Erick Galindo talks to Jane the Virgin writer Rafael Agustin about his new coming-of-age memoir Illegally Yours. But this isn’t your usual sit-down interview.

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Picture this. Two friends chit-chatting over cheap burgers and ceviche in a gas station parking lot.

You can’t get more Americana than this.

It’s just two fellow writers talking shop, but something stood out to me that I think is really important to bring up here. Here are two Latino storytellers who know how hard it can be to get their stories through the "gatekeepers" that hold the keys in mainstream media.

Agustin tells Erick that they have to “trojan-horse it”. “Get in there and then open up and bring our tios, cousins, friends, the whole community with us.” Agustin says.

Augustin shares his perspective of what it was like to grow up as an undocumented Ecuadorian kid who moved to the United States with only the visuals of Hollywood to guide him through the culture.

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Growing up he aspired to be none other than Bayside High’s FINEST: Zack Morris from the 90’s hit show Saved By the Bell. The only problem was…he soon realized he wasn’t white.

It's a great story. Read it here.

As always, stay happy and healthy, folks. There’s more news below the fold.

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What Else You Need To Know Today

Before You Go...Need A New Place To WFH? Try Out These Coffee Shops

An illustration of a steaming coffee cup, spoon and muffin on a map of Los Angeles.
(Arantza Peña Popo

Fun Fact about Yours Truly: I LOVE trying out new coffee shops no matter what city I’m in. I also enjoy working from home or wherever I want to. What I love about my birth city is that there are quite a few places where I can freely work for a few hours and get my daily dose of caffeine. My fantastic colleague, Caitlin Hernandez, put together a good list of coffee shops to visit.

You’ll see one of my suggestions in there but I love these places so much, I gotta offer you more options to not only grab good coffee, but ALSO grab a seat and do some work:

1. Sip & Sonder in Inglewood.

Literally down the street from Hilltop’s Inglewood location is Sip & Sonder. It’s Black women-owned brand that serves as an entrepreneurial and creative hub. I love this space because they have several events here from time to time. It’s also a very nice, aesthetically pleasing place to crack open your laptop and work. They even have outdoor seating! Get you a cup of joe or tea and stay for awhile! 

Location: 108 S Market St, Inglewood, CA 90301

***Do I have to pay to park? Yes, but it’s only a couple of bucks.***

2. Bodega Wine Bar in Santa Monica

This place is so dope. I’m a sucker for places that serve as a cafe where you have adequate space to get work done, and a bar, where you can have fun with your homegirls/boys at night. This cool, chill, sophisticated spot serves great coffee AND alcoholic drinks. It’s recently become one of my absolute favorite places. Coffee is available every day from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., but after that, it’s time to close your laptops and drink wine with the homies. 

Location: 814 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA 90401

***Do I have to pay to park? Of course. It’s 7 minutes away from the beach!***

3. Cafe Organico in Silver Lake

Y’all. When it gets a little bit cooler in L.A. You have to grab some coffee, a bite to eat and your MacBook and sit down outside here. It’s such a cozy, backyard-like, beautiful outdoor work spot and definitely one of my faves. 

Location: 534 N Hoover St, Los Angeles, CA 90026

***Do I have to pay to park? Nope. You just park somewhere in the surrounding neighborhood.***

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