JUAN VALDEZ

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JUAN VALDEZ

 

To Scotty,

Juan Valdez is the name of a Columbian Coffeehouse chain, the Central American equivalent of Starbucks. The handsome face that is their logo does not resemble the original hero of the Chicano movement.

When you asked me about him my brain went into recovery mode as I tried to remember and talk at the same time.

In the sixties I was studying to become a psychotherapist. The students who were my friends were your age and because of the Viet Nam war were overwhelmingly liberal. This movement soon became fueled by Communist Party interests.

Among these groups was the Chicano movement. Those who had been born in the late forties quickly took up any rebellious cause and the world changed. I was one of those people, for no other reason than to be connected with those who were becoming my new circle of friends.

I saw what was happening but winning the approval of others was more important to me than how to cast my vote. All that changed when I got to our fellowship. At first my attitude about life was motivated by the same need to belong that had made me into a champion of liberal causes.

When after my divorce, I experienced the dreadful new awarenesses that only divorced people will ever know, I realized for the first time in my life that I would have to become my own man and to stop nodding heads with everyone.

Anything else ya wanna know about Juan Valdez?

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