With apologies to Orange County Register sports genius Randy Youngman, notes, quotes and observations from my Sept. 18 book signing at the Yost Theater for my new book, Orange County: A Personal History:
*About 500 people showed up to hear my lecture! About 500! I add the qualifier because the Yost's bottom shell seats 500–there were empty seats, but not many, and there were also a lot of people standing in the lobby or in the aisles. Gracias to everyone who attended; to everyone else, you missed out.
*Throughout my lecture, I wore a orange bag worn for decades by Ignacio Lujano, the iconic orange picker whom San Juan Capistrano officials booted out last month.
*Hosting the event was Libreria Martinez. They sold quite a few of my books. I'm happy, not so much that people bought my book but that people bought them from the wonderful bookstore. Please visit them (1110 N. Main St., Santa Ana, 714-973-7900) and buy something.
*People of note spotted: SanTana City Council candidates Art Pedroza and Lisann Martinez (running against Busty Bustamante and Claudia Alvarez, respectively), mayoral candidate Michelle Martinez (who introduced Macarthur genius Reuben Martinez), former councilmember Mike Garcia, Rage against the Machine frontman Zack de la Rocha, Garden Grove City Council candidate Linh Ho, Greer Wylder of Greer's OC (the first person in line for the book signing!), Register reporters Rachanee Srisavasdi and Andrew Galvin (each bought my book), Chris Prevatt of Liberal OC, Rancho Santiago Community College District trustees John Hannah (who's giving my book to OC Blog master Matt “Jubal” Cunningham–now THAT'S going to be fun!) and Al Amezcua, Mendez vs. Westminster documentarian Sandra Robbie, Bibliocracy host (and Weekly contributor) Andrew Tonkovich, and none other than Huell Bleepin' Howser! Needless to say, Howser proved the most popular person of the night.
*The after party was held at Libreria Martinez, where a good 100 folks retired to drink free beer, wine, and tequila and nosh on Nouveau Mexican snacks prepared by Luz Maria Encinas, who created delightful sopes, salads and a killer creme brulee.
*The after-after part was at Memphis at the Santora, where some hipster douche tried to pick a fight with me…but I'll talk about that in another post.
*Although this was the Orange County history event of the week, Chris Jepsen–a worker at the Orange County Archives who runs his own personal OC history blog–couldn't bring himself to even mention my book or the event until reading Peter Larsen's snarky review, adding “the review makes it sound like [Gustavo's] book is very similar to his work elsewhere.” You can deduce his cryptic line by reading this, and remembering Jepsen mostly posts about safe stuff like pictures, orange crate labels, and Register stories while never mentioning my work this year on Joel Dvorman, Henry W. Head, the Bowers Museum's KKK tree, Ignacio Lujano, and all the other history stories that make such orange crate historians act like little you-know-whats.