Most of the supermarkets are open again -- my neighborhood was luckier than those a few miles south -- and shoppers no longer fistfight in the aisles over chickens. The restaurants are mostly open again too -- the several that burned tended to be unluckily close to liquor stores or discount outlets -- though the atmosphere these days is far from merry. Monday night I went to one of my favorite Korean restaurants, Yee Joh, close to the burned-out complexes on Hoover and Alvarado. (The mall it anchors sports a professionally lettered, though misspelled, sign that says ”We Support Rodeney King.“) Yee Joh was emptier than usual, brightly lit and fairly grim: The Korean-American community doesn’t have much to smile about this week. The food was good as ever, but I almost felt like crying, and they seemed relieved to see us go.
A version of this story originally ran in the Los Angeles Times.