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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

¿Tacos or Tacos?: Food-Truck Short Debuts at Next Week's Sonoma Film Fest

Posted By on Tue, Mar 29, 2011 at 1:31 PM

San Francisco's interest in the food truck rang louder last year than the roar of a Husky generator. But are we in danger of becoming hipster douchebags, Yelping our enthusiasm for upscaled street food while the form's inventors ― the Latino heirs of taco-truck tradition ― wither in relative obscurity?

That's one of the questions raised by the short film by Robert Lemon, ¿Tacos or Tacos?, as it compares hipster food trucks with old-school loncheras in Austin, Texas. We published a YouTube link to the film last December after reading about it on the California Taco Trucks website. Now, Lemon's short is making its way through the film festival circuit, starting with its world theatrical premiere at the Sonoma International Film Festival, April 6-10 in downtown Sonoma.

Lemon's currently working on his doctorate in geography from the University of Texas at Austin, but it's the taco trucks of Fruitvale, in Oakland, where Lemon cut his teeth while studying for his masters in landscape architecture at Cal.

"You have so many different municipalities with trucks," Lemon tells SFoodie by phone from Texas. "And Off the Grid is interesting, all these informal food vendors organized to be a temporary market."

Lemon's considering writing his doctoral dissertation on the differences in truck culture in the Bay Area ― with its reliance on social network sites like Twitter and Facebook ― versus the far more rudimentary scene in Columbus, Ohio. "Part of what I'm interested in is how does a virtual space transform a physical urban space, and San Francisco is a hotspot for that sort of idea."

Naturally, you can follow the progress of Lemon's film on Facebook.

Follow us on Twitter: @sfoodie, and like us on Facebook. Contact me at John.Birdsall@SFWeekly.com

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