I was just looking at the website of my friend, Sergio Teran. He’s a really gifted artist. I read his artist bio, which I hadn’t heard, or seen, before:
My family was eccentric, particularly my father. He loved music. He said he preferred Little Richard to Elvis and claimed his fantasy affair would be to go back in time and hook up with a young Tina Turner.
After being rejected his professional Lucha Libre License — some incident involving a brawl and defending his brother’s good name — he started what was the beginning of a fast and dysfunctional lifestyle.
Having grown bitter and shunned by “La Lucha” (freestyle wrestling) he turned to small time hold’em-up jobs, convenient stores, bars, and the occasional Nail and Beauty Supply. “Those places make a killing,” he said. For a brief period, my father was known to the local media as “El Manos Grande Bandit.”
On a brisk, February afternoon in 1974 while purchasing a 16oz can of Budweiser and a pack of pork skins at a Johnson’s Market, he waited for the clerk to open the register. With a lapel over his mouth and his left hand in his coat pocket, he simulated a concealed pistol. The other hand he cupped tight, like a big La Crosse glove. “Aqui!” “Andale!” as he snatched the cash, leaving the pork skins behind. He jumped the turnstile, made a dash through the slow automatic doors and into his rusty white Plymouth sport.
The security guard gave chase. “Alto!” He shot twice. “Pop! Pop!” A bullet ripped into the trunk of the car, through a bottle of rubbing alcohol, slicing the back seat and entering into my 35 yr old, pregnant mother. The bullet passed into her hip, piercing her iliac crest and making a tear in her placenta, thus inducing labor.
“I can remember feeling a great burning pain,” she said “and then my water broke. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough to drown tu’ Pa Pa’, because I would have that day.” I was born the next morning at 1:29 a.m. at USC Medical Center. The doctors referred to me as “the baby born holding a bullet.”
In 1999, I graduated from Art Center College of Design. In 2002, I received a Masters of Art from New York University. Today I am living in California helping raise my son. He likes cars.