Beef Teriyaki Skewering
The Obon Festival is a time when Japanese-American people return to their communities and honor the deceased. According the Buddhist Church, the Obon Festival is called Kangi-e, the gathering of joy. Obon for many is considered a homecoming because it is a time when people return to their hometowns to see family and friends, dance, play games, and eat.
The summer heat wave
Created unusual colors
But the people suffered
Good often comes with bad
Picture taken on opening day May 31, 2017 in San Jose
Said to open in 2015
Delays & cost overruns
Then came the rain
An uneventful opening
Union workers picket Silvery Towers in down-town San Jose over hiring scab workers on May 31, 2017. According to Al Gonzalez, a business representative for UA Local 393, Silvery Towers was sold to Guangzhou R&F Properties in China. Full Power Construction an affiliate of Guangzhou R&F then hired non-union workers from outside the area.
It was also learned that Guangzhou R&F Properties lured Chinese millionaires to invest at least $500,000 in their project in order to obtain a US green card due to the EB-5 Visa program. The EB-5 Visa program is an archaic investor program enabling entrepreneurs to apply for a green card if they invest or provide jobs for workers.
Full Power Construction hired inexperienced non-union plumbers, sheet-metal workers, and electricians as low as $15 up to $30 a hour who are often inadequate for the work.
Full Power Construction are not paying workers family sustaining wages especially for the costly Silicon Valley area. They are not hiring local workers, apprentices, women, and veterans in order to cut costs and increase their profit margins. In addition the EB-5 scheme doesn’t really benefit local workers or help decrease local housing costs but only to make more money for Guangzhou R&F Properties.
Will Calhoun performed at the International Jazz Day at the San Jose Hammer Theatre sponsored by San Jose Jazz and San Jose State University on Sunday April 30, 2017. One of the highlights of his performance was him performing the Japanese folk tune “Doll of the Bride” during his tribute to Elvin Jones. Will Calhoun is a talented and charismatic drummer based in the Bronx, New York. He received the Buddy Rich Jazz Master Award and was recognized as the best drummer by Rolling Stone Magazine. Mr. Calhoun is not like a typical jazz drummer and incorporates rock, as well as, hip-hop and ambient sounds into his music which probably differentiates him from other contemporary drummers. In addition to rock band Living Colour, Will has toured and recorded with B.B. King, Mick Jagger, Harry Belafonte, Pharoah Sanders, The Allman Brothers, Carly Simon, Herb Alpert, Wayne Shorter. And he recorded with Run-DMC and Public Enemy.
A persimmon tree during the springtime
In San Francisco on March 10, 2017, hundreds of Native people from different Nations and their supporters boisterously stood up for indigenous Native Rights and sovereignty. The nationwide protest was part of the four days of prayer, lobbying and demonstrations at the Nation’s Capitol. When President Trump gave the DAPL pipeline an approval for completion on January 2017, they showed the government wasn’t honouring any Native treaties. Most Native treaties were developed from 1774 to about 1832 to establish borders and behaviour between the government and Nations. These protests show that the struggle against DAPL will continue.
Over 200 bicycle riders showed up on the San Jose Mural bike ride on Saturday March 4, 2017. The bicycle ride was basically a way to learn about San José’s diverse, vibrant, and rich culture traversing the communities of Gardner, Down-town, East Side, Mayfair, and Japan-town.
The starting point was the Aztec Calendar mural at the Gardner Community Center painted by Antonio Nava Torres in 1995. Nearby we visited the Washington Elementary mural designed by 3rd and 4th graders and painted by local artists.
Afterwards we rode to the East Side to see “The Mural de la Raza” by Jose Meza, one of the oldest murals in San Jose on Story Road, and is about history of the Chicano community. It was highlighted by a talk by “The Homeboy Mad” or Jose Valle.
Heading towards Japan-town we visited Guadalajara Market on Empire Street in San Jose and is the site of 2 murals. It was be the new site of Empire 7 Studios in the future. The highlight of the tour was the exquisite Nosego mural Nichi Bei Busan in San Jose Nihonmachi which we took a group photo.
The San Jose Mural Bicycle ride was organized by Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition, De-Bug, and Empire Seven Studios.