Reading about John Fante Square being inaugurated on 5th and Grand I remember the passionate racial fights between Bandini and his Mexican girlfriend. Soon after, Kerouac comes into mind smoking marijuana in the desert heat of a Mexican afternoon, the gratifying pleasure he felt after eating the refried beans made by his Mexican girl. These page-turned memories rising on the same heat-rippled smoke of mirage like driving on the 15 into The Cajon Pass. Back in the city, Hunter Thompson’s friend, Oscar Zeta Acosta’s, attorney-rants in Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo, the Juarez prison cell, the judge demanding for him to learn his father’s language: Spanish. How many other aspects of American literary culture have been ignored, or forgotten, even by Chicano Studies courses, let alone more traditional literature classes, I ask myself?
Submitted by M. Saldivar Galindo