Monday, December 19, 2005

breakdancing mishaps and broken buddies.

“Shit – I think I broke it.”
That’s what he said and I didn’t believe him right away. Now I do.

I broke him.

Really I did, and I feel really bad about it- I’ll have to feed him. And coddle him at the very least. My Best friend Joe was hanging out with me at this party and they had cardboard out for break dancing and we were all having a good time being silly and I was encouraging Joe to take a turn and do a little spin on the floor.
Let me clarify a few little things….
1.I’ve never seen Joe dance despite his assurances that he can.
2.Let me remind you that Joe is Caucasian.
Now naturally if your white friend who you adore and have been hanging around for YEARS and have never seen him dance – EVER was like “Yo! I can dance!” would you believe him? Right – me either so he was like “I used to break dance back in the day!” and I’m like “yeah right then do a lil something something…” Thinking he might do a little pop and lock or a small spin… you know. So Joe’s like – “Its been twenty three years..” and I’m like “It’s like riding a bike!” So he goes down and does some little fot work and a few twists ect.. then he tried to fly into a Kamikaze spin (like a wide open windmill spin) and crashes his ankle into the floor.
     “Shit – I think I broke it…”  
It’s like riding a bike! I said…. umm.. how about no? So I’m like “Crap well we should go to the hospital.” Joe’s like-  No he doesn’t go to the hospital unless its hurting for days and swollen the side of a grapefruit. So this morning – you guessed it –it’s the size of a grapefruit and he’s on his way to the hospital. So yesterday I broke my best friend.
So what does this teach me?
1.Joe probably can dance despite his Caucasian-ness. At least keep a beat.
2.Remember at all times Joe does everything to the Nth power so next time just ask him to robot and call it a day.

Good life lessons – don’t you think?

On the plus side I really really really like his new girlfriend, and think they are gonna make a pretty nifty couple for us to hang out with, cause TiTo they aren’t exactly avalible for couple type outings and while I’m okay with that for me – I’m hoping they still do the god parent thing with Cammy. But they don’t really do that much either. That’s another post.  

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Being black- Tookie, and other moments I wish I didn't have

Tookie was killed last night. And I am sorry for it.

We can go on for days about racism. So lets…. I wasn't gonna make this a race thing - but why the hell not? Its part of hte issue no matter what people say to the contrary. I left a comment on another bloggers site and I’d like to address some of the comments it generated. Lets just say the people who frequent there are typically exactly the opposite of me. And I STILL haven’t figured put why I go there outside of the fact that no matter how many times I disagree with Jack – the author- I still want to know what he’s thinking. We are probably total opposites but I’d like to think he and I would have been friends outside of cyber world. It’s a pleasant thought and don’t try and take it from me okay?!?!
Any way here goes - btw - these are edited to just include the parts I’m gonna comment on the blog I left a post on was – the Tuesday Dec 13th entry.
First up…Zelda

Raquita - Why does being a race other than white always have to be at issue? So you are slighted by some bigotted asshole. So what? That means you have to start a gang and deal drugs and kill innocent people? What's the point? Proving the bigot right?

Zelda I can’t really explain it to you. It’s not just about being slighted by some bigoted asshole when the asshole is society in general. Have you ever been followed through an entire mall by mall security? Ever been pulled over for no reason – told something stupid like your ashtray is a fire hazard – that’s why they pulled you over? Ever been told naming your child something like Jamal will hinder his ability to get a job – he’d be better suited if you name him Brad. Ever been told that celebrating your culture is not acceptable business attire- but asked why you’re not wearing green on St. Patrick’s Day? Why is it that in the war on drugs the exact same amount of crack will get you three times the amount of jail time vs cocaine? But none of this has anything to do with Tookie Williams, but honestly I believe as long as America refuses to acknowledge that race is an issue in ways that you simply can’t fathom – the issue will forever be there whether white America can see or understand.
Whether the judicial system gives black men the same “fair trail” they would give a white man for the same crimes. We can go over and under it, we can flip left and right about legal mumbo jumbo and all kinds of things that don’t really make a difference. But for me this isn’t about the fact that he co-founded the Crips. Unless creating a club –ala the legal term for a gang - is against the law – I could give a crap about that. And before you ask, yes I have lost friends and family to gang violence. I grew up in NoCo (north county) St Louis, where Crips and Bloods and GrapeSt, (yes there was a gang called GrapeSt complete with purple rags and bandanas) did all manor of stupid crap including shooting each other and innocent bystanders. But this isn’t about the people who have been affected by gang activity, this isn’t about the gang he created, you can’t try him for that – any more than you can put the dumb as rappers who glorified that life through out the nineties, so all you people who are touting justifying this due to that fact are -simply put out -of line.
S.Tookie Williams was seventeen when he and his friend founded the Crips. Seventeen. Seventeen year old guys aren’t thinking about proving anybody right or wrong. They are trying to figure out who they are and where they fit in, and in today’s society if we dealt with things like residue from negative race relations – and “So what?” is not dealing with shit. “So what?” is passing the buck. “So what?” asks for confrontation. “So what?" is why young black people buck against the system. Why would you want to assimilate with people who tell you “So what?” And why is assimilation the goal? Let me not start that thought –I’ll get off subject.

Now I have always believed that Black society needs to step up to the plate. Mr. Cosby in all of his ranting had the right passion – he just didn’t DO anything, except exactly what the rest of society has done- point a finger at the poor and uneducated – say “Get an education!” but do nothing to make that a more feasible option than illegal options. If black society dealt with all of our issues we would be better prepared to stand in the gap for those that need a link to make education and prosperity feasible. I’ll quote Charles Barkley – who I never thought I’d be quoting, “As long as black people are not striving to become more educated, having children they cannot afford we are not moving forward.” But alas they need a total change in mentality- but that's another post as well.

Zelda continued –
I don't understand giving clemency to someone like that. It doesn't matter whether he's found redemption or not. Death Row is not rehab. Prison is not rehab. It's a punishment for your crimes. Tookie's were heinous and he forfeited his life when he took that of an innocent person. That is the lesson that must be taken from this. If you take a life, there is the chance that yours will be forfeit.

Prison isn’t rehab. Well that’s news to me. I thought that was the whole point. As I recall governor Blackblack worked pretty hard to get the California prison system to be focused on rehab. Yes apparently his plan sucks but hey - Schwarzenegger declared that "the purpose of corrections is to correct" and that he intended to reform California's hard-nosed prison and parole systems to place emphasis on rehabilitation rather than punishment. So in the state Tookie Williams was executed in – that was not supposed to be the goal of that particular system.
And lets take the odd idea that he was sincere in his reform. Novel idea I know, some coming to the idea that its completly not possible they are wrong. But for shits and giggles let’s say he did. He honestly believes he did not commit the crimes he was convicted of but feels remorse for the crimes he did commit and is role in creating the Crips. He is a man and a black one at that - Pride will not let many a black man take resposiblilty for things they don't beleive they are accountable for. And his pleas for non violence– that mind you did not fall on deaf ears – helped to stop some young men from following that path, helped establish gang truces, and say he only sold 1000 books they were read by teachers to numbers of class rooms and passed by parents to parents for kids to be read to and read by them. The fact that you would kill him anyway says to me, we are a heartless society. His death does nothing what he has learned and has to say could have spoken to thousands, Letting him live and showing him mercy would have spoken to millions of young black men. And I hope young black men do not take from this the lesson that society sees nothing but your mistakes.

If Tookie had found redemption, he would have taken his last few minutes and told every child in this country, regardless of race, that gangs are evil, murder is evil, and he deserves this punishment. But instead, we have a race martyr who, even though he is guilty of horrific crimes, will be glorified and justified to the kids who most need to see him vilified as the hateful murderer that he was

The lesson I take from this was Judge not lest ye be judged. It is not my place to call for another’s life. I don’t care what his crime was – that is between him and his maker. And people who call for another’s life knowing nothing about him, judge him on your experiences and life and upbringing, assume what you think would have been an expectable action to be granted his life, to say what he would have done if her were really repentant is disgusting to me – and very very sad. Even in the act of dying you would deny another human the right to die in the manor he saw fit? He did not reiterate his innocence. Did not scream of injustice – did nothing to rub the victims families anyway, he simply died. He spent the last twelve years telling children not to follow his path- its okay with me if he took his last moments for himself.

I don’t believe in the death penalty in my heart I believe it is wrong to take another’s life – although I can understand the desire – if someone hurt my child I’m sure I could taste the blood, and the killing Samuel L Jackson character in “A Time to Kill” committed would have felt good to me, been to easy for them though I could see myself in his shoes wanting to do it, but I pray I have the strength to leave that to my God as vengeance is not mine, I’m sure I would have to tattoo that on my person - on my hand - so I would have to see it before I picked up the gun. But it is not to be mine no matter how I want it. It is easy to say with her sleeping safely in the other room, and a pray everyday for God to grant the mercy that would never test me on this.

This has been a long enough post for one night – I want to go kiss my girl – hold my husband – call my father and tell him I love him.

p.s Sarah I am sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo excite youare coming - doing a very happy dance -Call me as soon as you get here!

Sumptin for Sarah and ex's for all and to all a good night

For Sarah

Anyway back to my regularly scheduled post. I had a very interesting weekend.

It was a long weekend, I was off Friday – because I wanted to go to a concert in Chicago but alas I thought my Granny was moving and the money was kinda funny so I canceled that trip. First blow to an other wise pleasantly planned weekend.
Then my ex called. My husband has a small sore spot when it comes to this ex. Its one of the few subjects that he regularly voices any discomfort. He gets instantly defensive, possessive and I dare say it a tad jealous. I kinda like that. Anyway J and I have a rather open relationship – not that kinda open you silly rabbit. We are very open and honest about everything. I don’t have any secrets and I trust he doesn’t either. So we chit chat about that situation but I think it kinda left a little residue over the weekend.
Saturday we had a dead battery then I took a friend to work and caught a flat tire.
Yes that was the kind of weekend it was. Sunday a dear friend bought a new friend over and he looked happier than a little bit. Alas one of my girlfriends is best friends with his ex- girlfriend and that has caused some friction – she saw him with new friend and while I asked her to keep all of this info to herself – I doubt she will, or rather that she can. She doesn’t keep secrets well, despite her best efforts, and it doesn’t help that her friend is a bit of a weasel and can is tricky enough to get Satan tripped up. Or possibly his ex girl reads this blog. Apparently a lot more people read this blog than I realized. Apparently my weekend was ex filled. The difference between the ex’s was that his ex he is trying not to hurt. My ex I’m trying to keep from pissing off my hubby.
Why is that even an issue? I hear you all yelling at the screen – you should just stop talking to him – do what you have to do to maintain your marriage- but its not that simple.
My ex and I were a couple for close to 8 years. We grew up together. Literally. I started dating him October 93, one of those fluke things. This girl in biology was like you two would make a great couple, we decided to go out and ironically we never saw her again. She just disappeared from class. We were typical young love and were happy until I graduated, that summer – then it started to go down hill. It took us until late 2000 to actually break up. And we toyed with the idea of getting back together but the break up and final few years had been too hard to undo or look past and frankly I didn’t like him anymore – I loved him- but I didn’t like him so I dated rebound guy and then I found J. And while I don’t want my ex – on any level – I don’t know that I can not know him. I wouldn’t even call what we are now friends. More like life acquaintances. He holds a place in so many of my memories, but I don’t know if he has told his wife as much as I have told my husband. That could be a mild issue with me. If we are just old friends why do I feel like I couldn’t call his house if I wanted to? I guess its mostly a respect thing. J’s ex only calls his cell phone. But if I were his wife I would always be a sore spot (long story – may tell another day) and my husband has every right to be concerned about protecting me and I’m okay with that. But how do you close off close to a third of your life?
My hubby for example had a girlfriend in college who I know he was a serious as he could be about a girl he wasn’t thinking about marrying. She was a short Jewish white girl and they dated for about three years. They still talk on the phone and e-mail and instant message all the time. And while it rubbed me the wrong way at first- hey I’m a woman – that’s my man and I can be jealous.. for a second. (if she was local I would have had to put my foot down) he told me there was nothing for me to worry about so I let it go. So this is the same thing right? Anyway I’m reading a lot I just finished Ntozake Shange’s Sassafrass, Cypress and Indigo, Nora Robert’s Red Lilly, and Zane’s Shame on it all. Yes My reading has been all over the map. I am working on a few new poems we’ll see.