Insiders say they expect Ché Café’s eviction notice will be posted as soon as St. Patrick's Day. Once it’s up, the Ché Collective and its supporters will have five business days to get out. If anyone is onsite at the zero hour, sheriff deputies would remove anyone present. Arrests may follow.
“I definitely think the disconnect is so great between the administration and the Ché people that the likely outcome is they will make the same mistake they did at Berkeley and overreact and use industrial strength pepper spray,” says a UCSD grad who remains a fan of the Ché.
Pepper spray or no, expect some Johnny Law fireworks.
When Ché Collective member Charles Peckham was asked if he knew of any members of the Ché Collective who would exercise civil disobedience, he told the Reader that he had “no comment.” He did tell us, however, that he has heard that some from the “general community” would indeed participate in “…direct action. In other words, a sit in.”
One of them is Jordan Krimston. His band Big Bad Buffalo was one of 18 bands that played Saturday at a last gasp concert at the Ché.
“If that day is posted online, I’m pretty sure there are plenty of us who would be happy to get arrested at the Ché. I think I would do that.”
Krimston says about 250 supporters turned out to Saturday’s last blast show, which had a $10 cover charge and also featured PSO, Coolside, and Left Astray.
“Towards the end of the night there were people in the woods waiting to get in,” Krimston tells the Reader. He said there was no struggle that day.
“There were a lot of security guards. They weren’t being mean or obtrusive. They kept coming up offering their services. The Collective said they didn’t need any help. They kept coming back saying, ‘Are you sure you don’t need any?’”
The last gasp show was arranged after UCSD Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Juan C. Gonzalez sent the Collective a letter on March 3 that said the Collective needed to vacate by March 14 or that the eviction process, which had already been green-lighted by a judge, would kick in.
Peckham says it was his understanding that process would start the first business day, March 16, and would probably lead to a posting the next day.
Krimston weighs in on what he says are the two major options now for all-age/no-booze shows that matter.
“The Stronghold [200 capacity] is difficult because you have to put money upfront, and if you don’t get a crowd it’s hard to get your money back. The good part is it’s yours and you can make up your own rules.
“Lestat’s [Coffee House] is overlooked as a rock venue. There is a backstage area. They give you free coffee, and it can be seated or nonseated. The sound system and the soundman, Louie [Brazier], are great. It’s small [75 capacity], but that can be good if you’re a band just starting out.”
Collective member Peckham says there has also been talk about the UCSD administration letting the Ché Collective use Porter’s Pub, which will part company with its current operator in June.
“The Collective has mixed feelings on [using Porter’s],” says Peckham. “Ché is historically significant. It’s covered in art. We are losing a large part of our identity when we lose the building. On the other hand, Porter’s is closer to the other student co-ops and closer to classrooms. It may be a viable option, but many think we just wouldn’t be the Ché anymore if we did that.”
UPDATE: On Tuesday, March 17, the notice was posted on the Che building that the eviction (which includes sheriff deputies and locksmiths changing locks) will actually happen at 6 a.m. Tuesday, March 24. The Che Collective has scheduled a meeting at 7 p.m. Friday March 20 at the Che to discuss what to do now.