By Hillel Aron
By Joseph Tsidulko
By Patrick Range McDonald
By David Futch
By Hillel Aron
By Dennis Romero
By Jill Stewart
By Dennis Romero
The MYEP Web site offers these helpful tips to neighbors intent on resisting yuppie colonization, including “Vandalize their cars: Mercedes, Lexus, Porsche, Jaguar, and anything that your family wouldn’t be able to afford,” “Don’t patronize Yuppie establishments,” and “Spread rumors about increasing crime in the neighborhood.”
In May 1999, San Francisco police arrested MYEP originator (and former OffBeat college acquaintance) Kevin Keating on suspicion of posting “terrorist threats” in fliers that appeared to advocate violence against chic restaurants and bars in the neighborhood.
“Officers searched Keating’s second-floor duplex apartment on Folsom Street, where they seized dozens of anarchist and communist books, computer disks, tapes and writings. Seven months later, all the materials were returned to him when the district attorney decided not to file charges,” the San Francisco Chroniclereported.
Now, there’s nothing in the snorkel-monster poster suggesting MYEP-level hostilities. Still, as Silver Lake attempts to navigate through the treacherous shoals of its sudden grooviness, we think residents would do well to remember that its winsome little hills and dales are not a preserve for Richard Neutra–loving ironicists but rather a neighborhood whose diversity is its greatest charm.
A small circle within L.A.’s Latin American community was in a flurry last week over what was billed as a farewell ode from Colombian author Gabriel GarcĂa MĂˇrquez.
A Chilean activist in Los Angeles forwarded a sentimental message, ostensibly written by the 73-year-old writer from his deathbed, to members of an e-mail group that included OffBeat. Among the lines attributed to the father of magical realism were “I might not say all that I think, but I would surely think all that I say. I would give value to things, not for what they are worth but for what they mean . . . I would understand that for each minute we close our eyes we lose sixty seconds of light.”
GarcĂa MĂˇrquez acknowledged in a New Yorker interview last year that he had been treated for lymphatic cancer, but there have been no confirmed reports that the disease is terminal. (The Los Angeles Timesreported that the author traveled to Los Angeles for a second opinion confirming the cancer diagnosis.) Last week’s message appears to have been a hoax that’s been riding the Internet express for almost a year. In June, the Peruvian daily newspaper La Republica ran a poem titled “La Marioneta” under GarcĂa MĂˇrquez’s name. The poem was actually the work of a little-known ventriloquist named Johnny Welch, Reuters said. Mexico City dailies reproduced the poem, and it was read on radio stations.
“Gabriel GarcĂa MĂˇrquez sings a song to life,” read a headline in Mexico City’s La Cronica, which published the poem superimposed on a photo of the novelist on its front page.
“My God, if I had a bit of life I would not let one instant go by without telling the people I love that I love them,” the poem said.
Sources told OffBeat that GarcĂa MĂˇrquez had been quoted as saying that if he had written something so corny, he would “die right now.”
Welch told Mexican radio he felt like he’d been robbed.
“I’m feeling the disappointment of someone who has written something and is not getting credit,” said Welch, who has worked for 15 years as a ventriloquist in Mexico and other parts of Latin America. Welch said he composed the poem for his puppet sidekick Mofles.
“I’m not a writer,” he confessed. No shit, Sherlock. Is it the false authority of the Internet, or something more fundamental, that would convince a sentient human being that the author of 100 Years of Solitude also wrote such drivel as “I would give value to things, not for what they are worth but for what they mean”? Some readers even found the doggerel revelatory. More proof that what passes for literary discrimination is often no more than star-fucking.