Photography by Michelle Kilfeather
Jaime Crespo's first drawings were made on the blank pages in a Bible.
In this podcast, the cartoonist traces his lineage back to his mom, who was born in northern Mexico and is Yaqui/Yoeme. She came to LA with her brother in the early 20th century. When their mom got deported back to Mexico, she moved up to run a cafe in Sacrament, where she ended up meeting Jaime's dad.
But his mom took Jaime to San Francisco when her husband became abusive. The kid was 4.
They made their way back to Sacramento to live with Jaime's widowed step-grandad and his new wife, a Black couple from Louisiana. He finished school up there and shortly after that, moved back to The City instead of New York, which he and his friends had dreamed about.
In the podcast, Jaime reflects on both stints in San Francisco—when he was 4 and then again when he was around 20. He reminisces about seeing hippies on Muni, his first Giants game and seeing Willie Mays, BBQ joints and bars that are long gone, and how he was moving away from sports like baseball and football, and more toward punk rock music and art.
He shares how he got started drawing at a young age with a story that's either charming or blasphemous, depending on how you look at it.
Check back Thursday for Part 2, when Jaime will continue the story of his life.
Meanwhile, check out more of his art at his website: corntortillapress.com. And follow Jaime on Instagram @the_real_comixvato.
We recorded this podcast at Jaime's home in Alameda in May 2021.