Becoming “The Mexican”

The genesis behind America’s spiciest column . . . Gustavo discovers theWeekly . . . What made him finally move out of his parents’ home at age 27.

Errata & Miscellany

• I was working on the campaign of current Santa Ana council member Claudia Alvarez when I discovered the Weekly. I saw Alvarez devolve from a promising politician to a political harlot.

• The television show I saw Will Swaim on was Real Orange, which hasn’t had a Weekly writer on in years. Inside OC With Rick Reiff, on the other hand, gladly has us on again and again.

• The Weekly staffer who cried when Swaim announced my book deal was Rebecca Schoenkopf, our longtime Commie Girl columnist who left in early 2007 and is now the editor of Los Angeles CityBeat. Recently, Schoenkopf let it be known she no longer hates me. Ain’t that sweet?


Insert Concluding Orange Cliché Here

OC Weekly’s takeover by Phoenicians, and why it’s okay . . . Becoming American . . . Carl Karcher . . . Buy the book!

Errata & Miscellany

• I’ll inevitably be accused of being a corporate stooge for praising my current overlords, Village Voice Media (previously reviled as New Times), but so be it. If you readers have learned anything about me in my time at the Weekly, it’s that I value a paper that treats Orange County like the insane fun house it is. I still think the Weekly does that—and the day it doesn’t, I’m off to Tierra del Fuego.

• If you’ve made it this far, gracias. Now, buy my book!

Orange County: A Personal History by Gustavo Arellano; Scribner. Hardcover, 269 pages, $24. Listen to the Mexican read from his book at the Yost Theater, 307 N. Spurgeon, Santa Ana. Thurs., Sept. 18, 7 p.m. For more info, call (714) 973-7900, or e-mail the author at

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