Occupy your imagination: Tomorrow, hear the words of a Mission son

Rising from the ashes: Benjamin Bac Sierra.

It's getting into the grind time for the Occupy movement. The first, brilliant tactic of camping out in our nation's towns and cities is meeting with a nationally-coordinated crack-down, just like we all knew it would. It's time for phase two.

Benjamin Bac Sierra knows a lot about reimagining. The author survived an adolescence among the Mission gangs to publish the first novel by a native son to come out of the neighborhood in decades

“Once upon a time,” he writes on his blog announcing a lecture tomorrow (Thu/17) at City College,  “the truth was that I was supposed to be a dishwashing convict criminal and to disagree with that truth was to fight the universe.”

With the raid on Zuccoti Park, the raids on Oscar Grant Plaza, the violence on the UC Berkeley campus (?!?), it's clear that the warriors of Occupy are in need of some uplift – and they're certainly in need of a plan. 

“To invent your destiny, you must appreciate your base knowledge and synthesize it with other knowledge or predictions, and create something new, unimagined by others,” Bac Sierra writes. Sure, it's New Agey and maybe his presentation isn't geared exactly towards camping activists – but this is a man from a section of society that gets a raw deal, who has subverted the “rules” and come out on the other side with a family, a teaching gig at City College, a luminous book, and self-worth.

It might be worth a trip to City College to hear him at this point, just sayin'. 


“Inventing Your Destiny” presentation by Benjamin Bac Sierra

Thu/16 1 p.m., free

Diego Rivera Theatre

City College of San Francisco

50 Phelan, SF