Sunday, January 11, 2015

Signs of the Times: Mexicali Mexican Food

If you've read this blog for any length of time, you are probably aware of my abiding affinity for the desert...and also dessert (lots and lots of dessert, just to be clear).  There are few things as inspiring to my heart and as rejuvenating to my soul as a long drive through the sweeping, Joshua Tree-studded sand-scapes afforded by the desert...but also cookies and cake (do not forget the snacks).

Perhaps, I love the desert because the suburbs of Southern California seem to bleed together, offering very little visual relief from the great expanses of passionless stucco homes and shopping centers.  Perhaps, I love the desert because the air is clear and I can listen to the sound of silence.  Perhaps, and most probably, I love the desert because of the cacti.  I'll never forget my first long-distance drive through the American Southwest, feeling like the many arms of the great saguaros were waving to me as we zoomed down the lonely highway in our overstuffed minivan.  The cactus is such a symbol of the desert's solitude that even when it is transplanted smack dab into the middle of a city, I am sustained by a sense of peace...peace and the possibility that Mexicali Mexican Food's sign also means that desserts are available (preferably churros). 
Mexicali Mexican Food - Bakersfield, CA

Fans of vintage signage, including myself, often get hung up on the epic wonders of neon signs.  It is easy to eschew signs less ornate, less fantastic, less prone to the comforting hum and glow of neon.  Mexicali's sign, however, offers definitive proof that "fluorescent" need not be considered a dirty word where signs are concerned.  Signs, more "light-box" in nature, are worthy of our esteem, particularly when they are as dynamic to the landscape as this captivating cactus - by day and by night.

Should there be any purists present, be of good cheer; one needn't look too
far to find the glimmer of neon on the grounds of Mexicali Mexican Food.

Mexicali Mexican Food's sign might be shaped like a giant cactus, but it is definitely the heirloom rose in the well-tended garden that we call "Signs of the Times."

"Mexicali Rose" - Gene Autry 

Mexicali Mexican Food Restaurant
631 18th St
Bakersfield, CA


Mr. Tiny

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