Last week, I revealed the results of important Internet research. I had found a writer with my exact name. The other Anita Brenner, a renowned author and cultural historian, was pretty cool. Born on the American side of the border to a immigrant Jewish family, she traveled back and forth between Mexico and the U.S., she studied in Mexico and at Columbia University in New York. She was a friend of Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera and other artists. Her books, “Idols Behind Altars” and “The Wind That Swept Mexico” are still wonderful.
She also wrote children’s books and I took great pleasure in pointing them out to my fellow first-graders, back in the day.
The other Anita Brenner and I are tocayas, which is a special word in Spanish for two people who have the same name. The word tocaya does not mean namesake, which implies that one person is named for the other. It merely means that two people share the same name.
Joe Puglia shares a name with a violinist. Our editrix, Cormaci, shares a name with a 1960s French-speaking, United Nations environmentalist. The actor Mel Gibson, unfortunately, shares his name with some folks in Tennessee.
And then, there’s our town. La Cañada Flintridge. Not to be confused with the great nation to the north. Canada is our town’s tocayo. advertisement
Have you ever had your mail bounce all the way to Canada and back?
Join the club. Most search engines and some post offices confuse our town with the great nation of Canada, with or without the tilde.
All of which brings me to our other social institutions, such as the La Cañada Thursday Club. The Thursday Club has a namesake in another city. It is the Thursday Club of San Diego, which, unlike the “real” Thursday Club, has a website:
The Thursday Club of San Diego was founded in 1921. The purpose of the organization is for engaging in charitable, social and benevolent endeavors and through fundraising activities, donations and bequests to accumulate a fund for the relief of the distressed. The Thursday Club also promotes social interaction among its members. The Thursday Club Foundation was created in an effort to separate the charitable activities of The Thursday Club of San Diego from its social welfare endeavors.
Oh no! Looking at a picture on their website I can see that even their clubhouse looks like ours. And they do similar charities. And they rent their club out for weddings!
Bizarro, for sure. What evil hath the Internet wrought, this time?
La Cañada Valley Sun: La Cañada Flintridge, California 2-25-10