Archive for the Blogging Category

remember

| June 9th, 2016

I have a strange memory.

People come up to me, and tell me that they knew me in school. I have no idea who they are.

I have little interpersonal memory. Sorry.

But I remember so much trivia from movies, or literature or books. So many minute details. Pebbles that shined amongst the sand.

I also remember sensual things. The way my mother shuddered when I’d hold her after she got out of the hospital. I remember her hair falling out as she brushed it. I remember the smell of stale Merlot and Urine. I remember how steady her heart beat was as I hugged her. I remember her breath being ragged when I was little, and feeling her ribs. I remember as she grew stronger as I grew older, and yet as she beat cancer, she succumbed to another disease.

I remember the smell of sweat, and cologne as pressed my head against my father’s belly. I remember how it grew softer, and larger through the years. I remember his big hands running through my hair, and the baritone voice that would read poetry to me.

I remember the smell of lavender my first real girlfriend used to use to cover up the smell of vodka and whiskey and vomit in her apartment.

I remember the soft snore the first night I spent with my wife. I thought it was adorable, and disturbing. I remember the sounds of her neighbor’s yippy dog, and the smell of her apartment; rice and paint. and Lake Street. I remember the muffled sound of fiesta as I would drift off on her couch.

A strange memory perhaps. But beautiful too.

I’m sorry if I don’t remember you.

I’m Not A Racist!

| July 29th, 2013

Honestly, I think that racism is much more nuanced than many of the broad strokes painted by these reactions, counter-reactions, and counter-counter reactions that have permeated the net since the Zimmerman trial.

Most people, %99, do not identify themselves as racist, because most of what they do is not racist. However, %99 of us are guilty of racist behavior. monster beats facebook frequency response Almost all of us do something that is motivated by race; consciously or unconsciously. Unfortunately, the rhetorical tool we have to address and recognize the racist behavior we see in others is to lob “You’re a racist” bombs at each other and stick our fingers in our ears. It’s childish, and stupid and counterproductive. Sadly, one of the more honest dialogs about racism, true racism, is in a satirical Broadway show starring puppets. monster beats studio by dr dre ibeats

We all fail to recognize the racial imbalance that happens on a sociological level because we fail to see the tiny, minute racist acts and thoughts we perform that contribute to it. All while saying to ourselves that “No, I’m not a racist, it’s not my fault” No, you’re not a racist, you’re just guilty of racist behavior.

I’m willing to believe that Zimmerman wasn’t a goose-stepping Nazi, or hood wearing redneck. I’m willing to believe that his racial bias and disdain wasn’t against black people as a whole, monster beats earphone ep but young black men. I’m willing to believe that when he looks in the mirror, he says to himself. “I’m not a racist, I spoke out on Sherman Ware. Many of the neighbors I’m trying to protect were black.” Does that exonerate him of racism? No.

I think we’ll be able to actually effect societal change when we recognize that racism isn’t the result of some macro-behavioral, impersonal fault of society, michael kors ava kors ankle boots

Dear Son,

| July 14th, 2013

I write this, on this night of July 13th, 2013. A night in which we see that a killer of a young black man walks free. Now, I will not speculate on that final question; what circumstances lead immediately to when that man fire that shot. Unfortunately, that is the fulcrum of this case. I will state that this is a case where a young, black man, was walking home alone, and was stalked by a man who thought that he did not belong. Something happened, and that young man died.

Now, as I stated before, this is 2013, and I don’t know what is more shameful: The fact that I believe that your light skin will spare you much what I am about write, or the fact that I feel some relief in that. I’m reminded of those old 7th ward ladies sitting in their kitchens or on their porches, examining every newborn creole like some venerable Spartans. “This one can pass,” or “That one is too dark!” checking behind the ears for color. I feel that, tonight, I am no better than them.

I can tell you of my experiences. Now, aside from my skin color, a pleasant caramel so I’m told, or my size, no one would mistake me for being dangerous or dis-earnest. Still, I have been stopped more than once by police for the color of my skin. Each time, I place my wallet on my seat, I place my hands on the wheel. “Yes officer, I was driving too fast.” or “No officer, I don’t know why you stopped me.” Calm, never angry. “Yes officer, I will step out of the vehicle.” or “No officer, you may not search my vehicle without a warrant.” My brother, your uncle, always told my wise words for dealing with the police: “You have rights, they have guns.”

I don’t know if Treyvon Martin was doomed that night once George Zimmerman made his choice to follow him, or if his anger sealed his fate. Always remember that people will fear you for the color of you skin. That fear makes your anger powerful. Unfortunately, that power more dangerous to you than to anyone else. Don’t be angry.

Three words that are the most shameful to write: Don’t be angry. You have the right to be angry. You should be angry. The world is unfair, and cruel; and by virtue of what, seven alleles, so much of your fate is written on your skin.

Don’t be angry. At least, not physically, not reactively. Be patient, be effective. Live well. Channel whatever dark intent in your life into making this world a better place.

My son, I hope that the world is a better place as you grow into it. My fear is that it won’t be.

Perhaps you will be spared the humiliation, and trepidation, and seething hatred of this superficial society that we find ourselves. Perhaps you’ll never have to worry about sharing the fate of a boy killed ten days before you were born.

Or perhaps you’ll have to face a world darker than the color of your skin.

Just know that I love you, and I know what you’re going through, and that it’s not ok, but it is what it is.

Your father,