A Proclamation for the Vassals of La Lengua: You Can Have It (and That Funny Name Too)

WHEREAS, our good friends and neighbors at Burrito Justice have sought emancipation from their longstanding (if nebulous) association with Bernal Heights, and the renaming of their territory as “La Lengua.”

WHEREAS, Burrito Justice asserts:

La Lengua is the flat, southern-most section of the Mission and is often miscategorized as Bernal “Heights” or Noe “Valley”.

It extends between 24th and 30th Streets, between Mission and Guerrero. It is named for its tongue-like appearance and preponderance of Latin American and Mexican eating establishments.

UPON CONSIDERATION of this, and in recognition of their unique (ie. flat, off-hill, and frankly less-glamorous) geography, we are inclined to look favorably upon La Lengua’s petition.

MOREOVER, we heartily approve of their choice of name, for reasons best expressed by Burrito Justice and their allies:

Some provocateurs have suggested the name should be SoCha. We disagree. Mission Mission reader Lou puts our disdain of FiSyNeCo (First Syllable Neighborhood Contraction) best:

La Lengua? Love it. That’s a great name for a neighborhood sub section. Better yet, it says “No, we’re not trying to be like NYC because this is San Franfuckingcisco and we don’t need to try to do anything, asshole” (in Spanish, of course).

We look favorably upon this logic as well.

WHEREAS, we must also acknowledge La Lengua’s imperialist tendencies and objectives:

The La Lengua Revolutionary Army (LaLeRa) recently expanded La Lengua’s northern border to 24th St, encompassing Pi Bar and Anthony’s Cookies.  We are considering pushing along San Jose onward to 23rd or even 22nd for angularity’s sake (and since no one else seems to be using it).

We shrug indifferently at this, particularly because La Lengua’s logic is sound and has no practical bearing upon the Hill People of Bernalwood, nor our Sovereign Dominion.

HOWEVER, at some point we will have to discuss certain Issues of Visitation and Potential Tourist Revenue stemming from the historic presence of the original José Cornelio Bernal homesite in what is now the La Lengua Autonomous Zone.

And so…

RESOLVED: We, the overlords of Bernalwood, do cede La Lengua to the denizens of same, and that funny name too. However, La Lenguans should be advised that as the overlords of Bernalwood, and being far more vain and glamorous, we shall in perpetuity claim La Lengua within our own Greater Sphere of Co-Prosperity and Influence, and that we shall retain certain Rights and Privileges regarding various Establishments contained within La Lengua, particularly as they pertain to eateries and gun shops along Mission Street, and the Liminal Area thereabouts.

Tremble and obey!

IMAGES: Map appropriated from Burrito Justice; Aerial photo by Telstar Logistics GeoSpatial Systems

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81 Responses to A Proclamation for the Vassals of La Lengua: You Can Have It (and That Funny Name Too)

  1. Herr Doktor Professor Deth Vegetable says:


  2. johnny0 says:

    This Treaty shall enter into force upon ratification and deposit of instruments of ratification (read: beer and pizza) with the Secretary General by all Partner Neighborhood representatives.

  3. toddlappin says:

    @JohnnyO: APPROVED!

  4. johnny0 says:

    LaLeRa shall make NO EFFORT to block or restrict free trading activities in or around liminal areas (including any and all eating, drinking, tourist and shooting establishments).

    These shall be considered areas of FREE NAVIGATION upon the condition that Bernal support the construction of THE 30TH STREET BART STATION.

    • tiny(T)hug says:

      Tourist establishments?? Oh you mean the Snowy Family residents braving San Jose to have a risqué dinner ‘over the border’ at the front porch?

      • Todd_Lappin says:

        Yes, that’s one scenario. Ditto The Waltons of Walnut Creeek, who are clamoring to dine at Emmy’s Spag Shack.

        But looking ahead, if St. Luke’s closes someday, we want to retain leverage to open BernaLand, a kid-friendly theme park to be built on the site of the former Bernal rancho.

  5. toddlappin says:

    The Overlords of Bernalwood do heartily endorse same, and most especially the 30th Street BART Station

  6. lighight says:

    How do you pronounce it? Bernal the Spanish way, as in Gael Garcia Bernal OR the gringo way as in Bernal rhymes with kernel?

  7. Todd_Lappin says:

    It’s pronounced in the Brooklyn/New Jersey/Sinatra style: BOInal, with nasal twang.

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  10. Concerned Guajolote says:

    I apologize in advance.

    (note: the Spanish language version of video game Star Craft contains a translation of the name of the character Overlord (“Superamo”, Superlord), which makes the bilingualization of this proclamation possible. Also, Bosques de Bernal is exactly what you would call this neighborhood nowadays, everything in Mexico is now Bosques de Something or other, and the meaning is the same as Bernalwood.)


    CONSIDERANDO que nuestros compadres y vecinos de Justicia Burritera han buscado su independencia después de una larga (si bien desdibujada y nebulosa) asociación con los Altos de Bernal, dándole a su territorio el nombre de “La Lengua”,

    CONSIDERANDO que los mismos afirman:

    La Lengua es un terreno llano que compone el extremo sur de la Misión, el cual se suele confundir con los “Altos” de Bernal o el “Valle” de Noe.

    La zona se extiende de la calle 24 a la 30, entre las Avenidas Guerrero y Mission. Su nombre viene de su forma de lengua y de la preponderancia de restaurantes latinos y mexicanos que contiene.

    POR TANTO, y tomando en cuenta su geografía llana (es decir, su carencia de vistas y glamour), nos inclinamos a una opinión favorable de la petición lengüense.

    ADEMÁS, aprobamos rotundamente el nombre que eligieron, por motivos idénticos a los que inspiraron el siguiente comentario Justiciaburritero:

    Algunos metiches han propuesto el nombre de SoCha. No estamos de acuerdo. Nos alineamos con el desdén de Lou, lector de Mission Mission, por el AbDePriSiColismo (abreviaciones derivadas de las primeras silabas de las colonias).

    “La Lengua? Me encanta. Es un buen nombre para un mini-barrio. Mejor aún, es como decir ‘No nos interesa ser como Nueva York. Somos San Franputocisco y nunca levantaremos un puto dedo, coman mierda. (En español, por supuesto.)'”

    Esta lógica nos parece impecable.

    ADMITIMOS que debemos reconocer las tendencias y los objetivos imperialistas lengüenses:

    Hace poco el Ejército Revolucionario (LaLeRa por sus siglas en inglés) extendió la frontera lengüense hasta la calle 24, anexando así al Bar Pi y a la Galletería Anthony’s. Por motivos de geometría, y por que a nadie más le parece importar, contemplamos anexar también hasta la calle 23 o tal vez hasta la 22.

    Recibimos esta noticia con indiferencia, ya que la lógica lengüense nos parece válida y finalmente no afecta los Dominios Soberanos del Pueblo Alteño de Bosques de Bernal.

    SIN EMBARGO en algún momento habrá que llegar a un acuerdo respeto a Ciertas Cuestiones relacionadas a los Vastos Fondos Derivados del Turismo a la hacienda histórica de Don Jose Cornelio Bernal, ubicada en la Comunidad Autónoma de La Lengua.

    Sin más por el momento,

    HEMOS CONVENIDO en que nosotros, los Superamos de Bosques de Bernal, regalamos y otorgamos La Lengua a los residentes del mismo, junto con su nombre chistosito. Sin embargo les advertimos a los lengüenses que nosotros, como Superamos de Bosques de Bernal, siendo mucho mas vanidosos y glamourosos que ustedes, reservamos perpétuamente el derecho a incluir a La Lengua en nuestro Gran Órbito de Prosperidad e Influencia, al igual que reservamos ciertos Derechos y Privilegios en cuanto a varios Lugares lengüenses, sobre todo aquellos que vendan comida o armas, o que estén ubicados en la calle Mission, o los Entornos Transicionales de la misma.

  11. Glad to hear they’ll no longer be claiming to be part of our hill :)

  12. waldo says:

    Aye. Although I’m skeptical about the Lengua designs on areas north of Army/Calle Ceasar Chavez. I could sign on for them to extend to Juri Commons (for, as mentioned above, angularity’s sake), but that’s about it.

    Anyone else notice that the boundary between Hipster Valencia and Thee Castro runs dog-leg thru Dolores park? I don’t get over to that park much (why would a Bernalwoodeño bother), but I imagine there must be some real border skirmishes there.

  13. johnny0 says:

    San Franputocisco, hahahahaha.

    The Bernal’s stone wall actually stood on the north side of Precita creek, aka Serpentine, aka Army, aka CC. But like I said, no one else seems to be using that area. Happy to have an northern liminal area.

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  16. Jen Mayer says:

    I have also heard “St. Luke’s Triangle” and “Baja Noe” as alternative names for this area. And yes, a BART at 30th & Mission should be the mouth of “La Lengua.” The platforms at 24th and Glen Park will limit any increase in ridership, eventually, so an in-between station will be essential.

    As long as we’re doing neighborhood improvement projects -just slightly south of 30th – – what about decking over or tunneling San Jose Avenue (from Randall to the 280 Entrance, or at least to the Arlington Exit a at Glen Park). That would link Glen Park/Holly Park, and create some nice greenspace and/or developable land while minimizing traffic effects of the San Jose Speedway.

  17. Dave on 30th says:

    But, what do we do with Chicken John? Is his compound on CC its own city/state, like the Vatican?

  18. Todd_Lappin says:

    An excellent question, Dave.

  19. Robissimo says:

    some folks have way too much time on their hand

  20. DaveO says:

    Is the sourthern boundary 30th or Randall?

  21. SFSFSF says:

    Well so much for free speech. I had a valid reply and you people don’t even put it up. You people must be the Hipsters I was talking about. Enjoy trying to cool.

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  25. Cesc says:

    The Bission

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  35. Chas says:

    I’ve always called that area (up to Mission and Randall) as Bernal Depths, but I’ve never tried to proselytize it. Guess I missed my opportunity.

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  45. Just Sayin says:

    I always thought that area was called the Transmission. Notice the shape.

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