A World of Humor, Queerness, and Tenderness in a Farmworker Camp; This ‘Jewish Arbor Day’, COVID Makes Connection Difficult for Gold Country Community

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Celebrating the Tu Bishvat holiday includes eating fruits and nuts indigenous to the Holy Land. From the Mother Lode Jewish Community's 2020 gathering. (Lisa Morehouse)

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Jaime Cortez’s "Gordo": A World of Humor, Queerness, and Tenderness, in a Farmworker Camp

Host Sasha Khokha talks to author Jaime Cortez about his new book of short stories, “Gordo.” The collection is set in the Central Coast farmworker camps he grew up in near Watsonville and San Juan Bautista. By the time he was 10, Jaime was a veteran of the annual garlic and potato harvests. The book, which he says is “semi-autobiographical,” is a journey of queer self-discovery and complex identities that don’t fit the usual stereotypes of Steinbeck country.

Covid Makes Connection Difficult for "Jewish Arbor Day"

This weekend is the Jewish holiday Tu BiShvat, a time to gather around food, and honor trees and the harvest. In February 2020, for her series California Foodways, reporter Lisa Morehouse joined a Tu BiShvat celebration in Tuolumne County. No one knew then that just weeks later, the COVID pandemic would stop many in-person gatherings like these, and create some tensions so many communities are still navigating.

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