Así Está La Cosa
My life has since been divided between dedication to troubled, marginalized kids, a need to tell stories and a love of music. My first book told the story of a one room school for the Clanton and First Flat's gangs of South Central – I built it when I was a twenty, still a kid and with little fear. Everyone came by to help: nuns, Kentucky Fried Chicken, local cops – the universe does seem to encourage a little crazy idealism. The next book added what I had learned working with Pima and Apache gang youth in Indian Country, and then with the inner-city gangs in Boston, Oakland and Phoenix. I'm now working with Guatemalan refugee kids arriving at our borders without parents, and hoping our politics is kinder than it sounds at the moment.
Between these projects I went to college, wrote a musical with my brother (actor Marco Hernandez), had children, and bought an Ice Cream truck when my kids needed their dad to be home. My kids worked it after-school, and sometimes during, and we were the best damned Ice Cream Truck in Phoenix.
The Music of Jimmy Ojotriste has been an intense labor. Like many authors, I write stories that I want to read: tales imbued with the warmth, humor and subtle magic that has permeated my experience. I hope you enjoy this story of music, glass eyes, brujos, abuelas, amores, locuras and illusiones.