Cindy Weiss: Mother, Teacher, Student

I first met Mrs. Weiss in 2002 when I was just a pee-wee in her seventh grade math class at Thomas Starr King Middle School. It was a rather hectic time for yours truly. Having just learned the ins and outs of our school system, my friends and I weren’t exactly the friendliest bunch of students, but we were especially a handful with “nice” teachers. Ms. Weiss, it’d turn out, was a nice teacher. Hailing straight out of Cal State San Bernardino, she was barely into her second year at King when we met. From the start, then, our time together was always going to be a growing experience.

Over the course of the days that’d follow, legends would be born in the classroom we shared. Some good, some bad, and some just better left unspoken. At least in the context of this story, that is.

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Reeling from Our News Cycle

It’s been difficult to write, more difficult than usual.

The news has been especially disturbing as of late, and I can still recall the days when I’d criticize mom for paying attention to the news on television, back when we still had a television in our living room. Years later, I find myself clenched to my seat, unable to look away; scared, angered, and disheveled by the scene on the screen of my laptop all at once.

To make matters more difficult, I don’t know what else I can really say to anyone else at this point. For a long time, my writing’s operated on the premise that I could appeal to reason within others the way others have appealed to the reason within me, but at this point, I’m not so sure anymore.

At this point, I don’t know who’s listening, or if anyone is listening at all. At the very least, I tell myself, the writing will go on some kind of record, for whatever that might count, except that there are so many records, so many of which are just obsolete, all just describing a moment of helplessness before the act of a great crime or tragedy against humanity, but they never actually contesting it or fighting back, just merely recounting.

The idea, then, that I can at least write to educate others about injustice in hopes of raising a general awareness to prevent more crimes against humanity offers little respite from the great sense of disappointment that my efforts at this have produced so far. Toni Morrison once said “the purpose of freedom is to free someone else,” but what’s the point of freeing one person’s mind if three times as many will still remain enchained at the end of the day?

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The one, the only: “Super” Stephanie Guzman

What more can we say? At long last, it’s time to feature one of the premier admirers of JIMBO TIMES!

Stephanie Guzman; Pasadena City College, 2009

I first met Steph during a snowball fight in 2010 at a Leadership Retreat organized by the Cross Cultural Center of Pasadena City College. Over lunch and activities at the retreat we were happy to be friends, but when the hugs and high-fives came to an end, she and I both were on an all-out assault against each other on the snowfield.

Looking back at it now, it was a natural match: while neither of us had known the other person longer than two days, it didn’t matter; we took well to each other as rivals from the start and have enjoyed one-upping one another ever since.

After all, we’re both avid news junkies, long-time WWE fans, and rabid hip-hop aficionados. In other words, we both know a thing or two about braggadocio.

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