"Where we from?"
It's the last bit that always gets to him, he said later.
In the parlance of South L.A., "east side" has long referred to gangs east of Main Street. All of a sudden, the words mean more.
They mean that the east side now gathers in peace, if only once or twice a week, and if only to watch kids play football.
"I'm not just part of a gang. I'm part of a community," Blue said. "It's the first time I ever felt that. I'm part of . . . this."
He threw open his arms again, and fell silent, which doesn't happen often.
"We're in the middle of the ghetto," he whispered. "You hear that?"
Then he smiled, knowing full well that the only thing you could hear -- at least for now -- was the sound of a lawn mower on the new grass, and the birds in the trees.