Salon. Historical. Regular social gathering (especially scientists, intellectuals, writers and artists.) Oxford Dictionary

The Downtown + Science Salon (DASS, modeled after TED Talks and a local social club, is about science, innovation, art and intelligent conversation. We host salons in topics ranging from psychology and urban planning to journalism, from robotics to language and the opera.


February 1.

Words is a monthly program centered on the intersection of literature and drama. The February edition features a reading from Raul Guerrero’s novella Murder and the Dog. A horrendous murder takes place within the world of a hidden New York, an underworld of undocumented immigrants, and journeys through the leisurely life of the Lothario journalist covering the story. Tee program continues with readings from Bettie & Bunny, a play in development by Miami Katherine McDonald and Susie K. Taylor, presenting a review from the afterlife of legendary pin-up model Bettie Page and photographer Bunny Yeager. WORDS concludes with selected monologues from The Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler. the acclaimed play gathering an array of female voices dealing with the feminine experience, from a seven year-old to a septuagenarian.


The piece on the headless woman was to mark a shift to a new editorial and business model, the new publisher assured him, and suggested the title Horrendous Murder in Queens. Ormaza found it redundant, not to mention sensationalist. Challenged, the new publisher swelled. He had a simple and bellicose philosophy: Life amounted to one inexhaustible menu of battles—large, minor, significant or inconsequential—battles he had to win. Ormaza surrendered. Working on the Horrendous Murder in Queens had him in no mood for fighting. If anything, he needed sex.

He looked around the room. The new publisher’s assistant, Ann, also was bored, and looking for anything to help her escape. Having graduated a year earlier from Columbia School of Journalism, one could infer that landing such high-level position at a prestigious magazine only one year out of school responded to a superior mind, what at Ideas was called, not without a tinge of mockery, a star’s brilliance. But the reason was mundane, she was the new publisher’s stepdaughter. Their eyes met. Ormaza walked across the conference room and asked her out for lunch. Ana accepted. She returned to her office for her purse and refresh her make-up.

The lexicographer and IT man at the Ideas, a lanky nerd, overhearing the exchange, told Ormaza that dictionaries soon would confine the term womanizer to the cemetery of language in disuse, with the warning on its archaic nuance for epitaph. Ormaza asked him to define womanizer.

“Proclivity or dexterity to engage women to satisfy an uncontrollable thirst for sexual pleasure.”

Ormaza didn’t see a reason to worry about the term’s longevity. Uncontrolled sexual appetite was not going anywhere.

The lexicographer elaborated:

“Sex no longer is a function of seduction, it now is like having lunch, a sport or dancing, and often women initiates the…” he can’t find the proper word, “the sexual session.”

Ann and Ormaza step out.

DASS in partnership with the iconic Olympia Theater.

174 E Flagler St. Miami.

February 7.  




Distinguished historian Dr. Paul George, best known as the official Downtown Miami historian, joins novelist Raúl Guerrero, author of the novel WOMEN LOVED DR. BOLL, for a provocative and hilarious evening of fact and fiction. To complete the evening, an exhibit of historical architectural drawings curated by Nicolás Delgado. There will be a book signing and a champagne reception.

“Flagler, after accepting attractive offers of land from Tuttle and the Brickell family, who lived across the river, brought his Florida East Coast Railway to Miami in 1896, jump-starting the transformation of a tiny riverine community into an incorporated city.” Dr. Paul George

“Julia Tuttle, Mother Julia, as the gravedigger called her, had a vision. She was taking a nap when she saw a bridge connecting South America and North America. She woke up with four words dancing on her tongue, Gateway to the Americas, and ran out to the Railway Depo facing the Bay, she was plump but fast…”  Raúl Guerrero 

DASS In partnership with NEUSHOP, at the historic Ingraham Building.

15 SE 2nd Ave.Miami.  

February 8. 



A salon directed by noted University of Miami evolutionary psychologist Debra Lieberman. Topics include: Language. What caused the mutations resulting in Holland becoming the tallest country in the planet? How emotions such a disgust and gratitude influenced mutations. The impact of Artificial Intelligence and robotics will have on human evolution in, say, 50 years. 

Language is perhaps the most distinctive and significant human characteristic. Did we come with the software for symbolic communication? Was it gradual adaptation, as Darwin proposed? If so, did walking propitiate the necessary cerebral adaptation for language? Article inside in Spanish. 


DASS in Partnership with Books & Books, at the Arsht Center. 1300 Biscayne Blvd. Miami.

For more information, please visit our website DassMiami.com.

March 2.

MUSIC/Opera in the park 

A celebration of Opera and Broadway favoritesEnjoy local food trucks, dining selections from downtown Miami vendors, and beer from local craft breweries at the Tina Hills Pavilion in Bayfront Park, all the while experiencing the beautiful music of The Magic City Opera by the bay.

The Magic City Opera was formed to entertain and educate South Florida audiences using the creative arts force. “We believe that an operatic presentation gives the audience the High Five of the creative arts: Music, Drama, Visual Arts, Dance, and the Literary Arts. We endeavor to give audiences an experience that will stay with them for a lifetime,” said the creator and director of Magic City Opera Graham Fandrei. "Bring your family,  blankets, picnic baskets and your appetites for great food, drink, and some amazing performances." 
Thursday, March 2nd from 6:30 - 8:30 pm

YouTube Video

Klezmer Company Orchestra performs "Blame It On The Bossa Nova" featuring vocalists Graham Fandrei and Rebekah Diaz-Fandrei. Florida Atlantic University on March 1, 2015. 

URBANISM / Urban Corridors As High-Speed Highways - Calle Ocho. 

By the 1950s, roads became the sole domain of automobiles. The automotive industry even created the term “jay walking,” and launched a campaign to demonize people on foot. Sidewalks shrunk and beautifully landscaped medians were torn out to create more lanes for automobiles. Trolley lines were ripped out and replaced with buses. But buses were devalued and branded as last ditch transportation for the unfortunate. Only the sedan was fit for the upwardly mobile middle class American.  More. SalonEspanol.com

LITERATURE AND JAZZ / Olympia Theater 

The Olympia Theater has witnessed for 90 years Miami evolve. Built in 1826 as an exotic and romantic Mediterranean plaza under a starry night, this cultural powerhouse delighted generations with film, ballet, theater, classical and popular music, with the likes of Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra and Luciano Pavarotti. More. SalonEspanol.com

HISTORY / Chocolate and Sex More. SalonEspanol.com

LANGUAGE/ Tribute to Beautiful Spanish Language More. Miami Herald.

Spanish Bad Words. Coño. Interjection, very Caribbean, and hip, versatile, urban. Coño, mi amor, estás irresistible, is a compliment for both men and women. More.

 Who Speaks Spanish Best? Are we talking about purity or market share? Going by the latter, standard Spanish, the neutral soap-opera variety is superior. More.

Bilingualism’s False Friends. An aggressive businesswoman does not translate to ejecutiva agresiva  More 


ARTE/ Las Meninas cobran vida

YouTube Video

EN BREVE / El benefactor

Deciembre 3. Jorge Pérez es uno de los empresarios y benefactores más importantes de Miami. Acaba de donar $15 millones al museo de arte moderno PAMM. En una entrevista realizada en PINTA, una feria de arte latinoamericano paralela a Art Basel, respondió franco y al punto. ¿Qué considera sagrado? La familia. Desde luego que habla de fútbol con su hijo menor. No piensa mucho en Dios. ¿Y la suerte? Uno se crea su propia suerte.  Sobre la niñez no recuerda mucho, salvo que su padre era el mejor vendedor del mundo y su madre una intelectual cabal, y caminatas por el puerto de Buenos Aires. Su objetivo es ayudar a que Miami sea una gran ciudad. ¿Y el arte? Lo asocia a la vida. Hablando de la vida, qué palabra mejor lo define: La pasión.

LITERATURA / La Feria del Libro

Comenzó la Feria el Libro de Miami con una charla de Jorge Ramos. Hizo un breve recuento de sus treinta años de labor periodística que lo llevó a entrevistar a los personajes más destacados del mundo, malos y buenos. Sobre lo cual apuntó que es siempre más noticioso entrevistas a los malos, pues son los que mejor manipulan los medios. “Una entrevista es como una guerra entre el periodista y el entrevistado. Hay quienes no permiten que los desafíen. En 30 años recuerda que solamente dos veces los guardaespaldas le impidieron realizar su trabajo de entrevistador: el guardaespaldas de Fidel Castro le sentó de un codazo y Donald Trump lo hizo sacar a empellones. Sobre las elecciones, admitió haberse equivocado, primero, sobre el voto latino, de los 30 millones de electores latinos apenas 13 acudieron a las urnas. Pero más allá de las elecciones presidenciales, los latinos obtuvieron grandes triunfos en la cámara de representantes y el senado. Se eligió a la primera senadora latina, por ejemplo. Sobre la actitud racista que se ve con mayor frecuencia, dijo que toca defenderse. Según enseñara Gandhi, cuando permanecemos callados ante algo que nos importa, es el momento que comenzamos a morir.

Sobre palabras huecas literatura
Raul Guerrero
Una característica de la Feria del Libro de Miami es el bilingüismo—afín a la ciudad, quizás la única en el país realmente bilingüe. El periodista Jorge Ramos inaugura el Programa de Autores Iberoamericanos con la presentación del libro Sin Miedo – lecciones de rebeldes y poderosos, en el que presenta una visión optimista de los latinos y su creciente influencia política y cultural.  More Nuevo Herald.

HISTORIA / Breve historia del chocolate 

Raul Guerrero

La palabra chocolate deriva del vocablo maya chocol. Los aztecas le añadieron alt, agua, convirtiéndolo en xocolatl (bebida agria). Mas. Nuevo Herald

LITERATURA / Oda a los Libros 

Raul Guerrero

Más de 600 escritores se congregan desde el 15 al 22 de noviembre para la Feria del Libro de Miami, una aventura en torno a ese objeto frágil y poderoso, como diría Carlos Fuentes, que nos permite compartir la imaginación del mundo Mas. Nuevo Herald

CULTURA / El Dia del idioma

Raul Guerrero

El 23 de abril los países hispanoparlantes celebran el Día del Idioma en honor al creador de Don Quijote, Miguel de Cervantes. Considerada la primera novela moderna y una de las mejores de todos los tiempos, “Don Quijote,” dice Vladimir Nabokov, “se irgue tan maravillosamente sobre el panorama literario… Símbolo de todo lo gentil, desamparado, generoso y galante”. Mas Nuevo Herald. 

MEDICINA / Rojo por el corazón de la mujer

Raul Guerrero
La Asociación Americana del Corazón recomienda que este viernes, 6 de febrero, nos vistamos de rojo. La idea es concientizar sobre las enfermedades cardiovasculares, en especial las enfermedades que afectan a la mujer. Tradicionalmente asociadas al hombre, las enfermedades del corazón matan a más mujeres que todos los cánceres combinados. Mas el Nuevo Herald.

IDIOMA / Breve historia del español 

¿Son España, América Latina y Estados Unidos Hispano, parafraseando a Oscar Wilde, mundos separados por un mismo idioma? Mas.

IDIOMA Y SOCIEDAD / Espanglish  El nacimiento de un nuevo idioma. More. Originalmente publicado en El Pais de Madrid.