This is my last post for LAist.
In the grand U.S. tradition of co-opting ethnic pride as an excuse to get totally blotto, this weekend bars and dorm rooms across the United States have been celebrating the Mexican Army’s 1862 defeat of invading French imperial forces (nevermind Mexico’s subsequent defeat and status as French colony for three years). Drinko de Mayo, Gringo de Mayo, whatever you call it, is what Gustavo Arellano calls a “mestizo St. Patrick’s Day.” This weekend will be the only time of year mainstream U.S. will want to be Mexican, putting on fake bushy mustaches, wearing sombreros and listening to Antonio Aguilar lament about being away from his homeland.
Amid cheers of “¡Sí se puede!” and “¡Viva Sal Castro!”, family, friends, former students, contemporaries and numerous admirers gathered this morning at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels for Sal Castro’s funeral mass.
You can read my remembrance of Sal Castro here.
Chalino Sanchez, 37, of South Gate, remained in custody at inmate reception in downtown Los Angeles, a Los Angeles County jailer said in a phone interview at 5:40 p.m. April 21.
Elvis, Tupac, and Chalino, back from the dead?
“By far the great majority of the people who go through even the severest of depression survive it, and live ever afterward at least as happily as their unafflicted counterparts. Save for the awfulness of certain memories it leaves, acute depression inflicts few permanent wounds.”
“It is of great importance that those who are suffering a siege, perhaps for the first time, be told – be convinced, rather – that the illness will run its course and that they will pull through. A tough job, this; calling “Chin up!” from the safety of shore to a drowning person is tantamount to insult, but it has been shown over and over again that if the encouragement is dogged enough – and the support equally committed and passionate – the endangered one can nearly always be saved.”
“To most of those who have experienced it, the horror of depression is so overwhelming as to be quite beyond expression, hence the frustrated sense of inadequacy found in the work of even the greatest artists.”
“… if depression had no termination, then suicide would, indeed, be the only remedy. But one need not sound the false or inspirational note to stress the truth that depression is not the soul’s annihilation; men and women who have recovered from the disease – and they are countless – bear witness to what is probably its only saving grace: it is conquerable.”
All quotes from William Styron’s Darkness Visible: A Memoir of Madness.
Retail space and market-rate housing interspersed amid affordable housing is done with the hopes of changing the social life of Jordan Downs and by extension, Watts. The concern amid current residents is whether the redeveloped Jordan Downs will replace one-to-one the 700 affordable units or if there will be a loss in affordable units, as has been the trend in recent redevelopments of public housing across the country.
I wrote a piece on Sal Castro’s death for LAist. Here’s a snippet:
Castro’s message was easily distilled into the message on the podium in the photo above: “No sean mensos (Don’t be idiots). Go to college and graduate!” I still have his business card from when I attended the CYLC eight years ago. On the back is the stronger version of his message: “No sean pendejos (Don’t be dumbasses). Go to college and graduate!”
Read the whole piece over at LAist.