The California Central Valley and its agriculture aren't too far from the Bay Area. But, as Marcy Coburn knows well, they're worlds apart.
Today, Marcy is the creative director at San Francisco's Pier 70, a mixed-use development just south of Oracle Park. Her mom's family moved west from Oklahoma and her dad migrated to California from his childhood home in Central Florida. The two met at Cal Poly Pomona near LA and moved to Visalia to raise a family.
Her folks split up and Marcy lived with her mom, who relocated to Stockton when Marcy was 13. She had dabbled in neon in punk before the move, but the kids in her hometown weren't ready for that. Stockton proved to be a better fit for the teenager.
Once they were 16, she and her friends started taking car trips to Berkeley and San Francisco. But Marcy's move to The City took quite a detour first.
She and a friend took a bus to New York City and walked across the country on a "peace walk" in solidarity with American Indians whose lands were being used for nuclear testing. That lasted nine months and ended with them at a test site outside of Las Vegas on Shoshone land.
It was on that walk that Marcy came out.
Please check back Thursday for Part 2.
We recorded this podcast in a construction trailer at Pier 70 in June 2021.
Photography by Michelle Kilfeather