Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Fruitvale: Economics

by Valeria, Jackie B., and Olivia

In the Fruitvale, you see a lot of people wearing really old and worn clothes; and for a lot of them, those are the clothes they go to work in. We met the owner of a liquor store today, and
she looked like she was dressed for bed in her baggy t-shirt, cut-off jean shorts, and flip-flops. Usually, that’s not how we'd picture the owner of a store. That’s a huge difference from all the business attire and polo shirts we saw in Walnut Creek the other day.

You can definitely see the difference in economic status when you compare the kinds of cars that people drive. Earlier, we posted the report on the lady in Walnut Creek that owns two Bentleys and a Mercedes. In Fruitvale, you’d be lucky to have a car that works at all! Usually the nicest car on the street is a used one! And people wonder why Oakland residents try to fix up their scrapper cars with 20in. rims and all that kind of crap.

Some jobs we saw were people working in different shops. Some people work in a shop where they sell different kinds of dresses; other people work selling Ice-cream (Paletero Man). We also saw some people that own their own stores, like one man that sells different types of snacks. He sells chips, drinks, cookies, doughnuts, water etc. There were two different stores where they sell fancy dresses for prom or Quinceañeras. A Quinceañera is a "sweet fifteen" birthday party for Latina girls. Obviously, they wouldn't have a lot of stores selling Quinceañera dresses in Walnut Creek, but here in Fruitvale there are a lot of Latinas, so there are a lot of Quinceañera dress stores. In those stores they also rent tuxedos for special occasions.

In Fruitvale, a lot of people sell on little carts; some sell churros, ice cream, tacos, fruit, or other snacks. In Fruitvale there are also jewelry shops, and restaurants. Most of the restaurants are Mexican food shops, but not all of them. We couldn't find any expensive restaurants. Almost all of the restaurants were for people who couldn't spend a lot of money.


Adela said...

I like how you used photos to make your point. How is your visit to Fruitvale changing your perspective about Oakland?

Square Bear (Jackie) said...

Adela: Hi, this is Jackie from the group. Well, the trip to Fruitvale really made us pay attention to our community and find all the little unique things that make Fruitvale, well...Fruitvale! It's hard to imagine that you'll find another area like it; it really makes you appreciate your community more (well, except for all the bad things). Anyway, thanks for commenting!