Wednesday, December 31, 2008

i should

be writing an obligatory end of the year/benadictory sort of inspired musing here. but i don'feel like it.

i'm glad this is the last day of 2008.
i'm not salty or hating, but it's been a hell of a year,
emotionally if nothing else. especially
the latter part of this year.
and maybe that's what life
is all about. but
it's gotten heavy.
to a large degree.

though, let me be fair, there have been some extremely enchanting moments in 2008 as well, for which i am most grateful. perhaps in the new year there is some balance that can better facilitate my brand of bizarre sanity....

anyway.

i don't know whether or not it's problematic that i can't anticipate anything at all that will happen in the new year. i mean, i can't even call it, homie. the only thing that i KNOW will happen for sure in 2009 is that I will turn 30. that is THE ONLY THING i can bet all of my little money on taking place, most assuredly. (If, however-for whatever random and unfortunate reason- that does not happen, then it will not matter that I lose all of my money, will it.)

my faith and hope are in tact though. i have a few plans written down and anxious to see how any or each of them shall unfold as i begin to execute in the oh/nine. my vision is vibrant. my desires, delicate... fragile even. (i dont even know if i know what that means, but i think i do. my desires are fragile at the moment.)

anyway.
the year is ending today.
though i'm relieved to see the new year coming in, there are a few precious moments of 2008 i wish and will forever wish to revisit. (i do that; can't help it.) i fear an onset of tears will well up should i fully recount these moments, so i won't. (there's totally no need to anyway.) but i think of them often. it pains me that every week i have to remind myself that life goes on though i dearly miss one friendship that has literally been laid to rest, and another that apparently just needed to end despite being very much alive in my heart. the loss of both friendships baffles me. i had no control over the loss of one, and decided to lose the other. yet i long for the days when i could be in the presence of both of these respective individuals. i'm supposed to believe i'll get over the loss though. so, you know. you convince yourself that life does go on, and just become resigned to the reality that you will ignore the keloid scars that have formed over your heart.


anyway, lighters in the air.
love never fails.
love never
fails.
so.
i love.
you. life. God.
laughter. dance. food.
kisses. hugs. music.
i love.

looking forward to the new year.
(the things that i looked forward to in past years,
i can't even say that i'm looking forward to
at this point.
not sure i need to.
right now
anyway)

but iam looking forward.

looking forward to the unfolding of new chapters.
looking forward to reaching more goals.
looking forward to the positively unexpected,
moreso than anything else.

God has a plan for me.
buh'leav'dat.
so.

looking.
forward.

meanwhile, faretheewell, oh/eight.
take your bow, and exit stage left.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

i'm enjoying myself so much

in LA that i almost think i should be staying longer.....
but newyork awaits,
brooklyn awaits,
stuyvesant avenue
and all things
associated
awaits.

the new year is officially
within reach and on the way.
thank God.

for the ability to move forward,
thank God.

for the ability to
build bridges and get over some stuff,
thank God.

for the ability to truly appreciate what i have,
and the family in my life,
thank God.

merry christmas.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

i have no idea to dress for a job interview during the winter

Like... are wool cotten blend slacks and a turtle neck sweater okay? or should i do the warm slacks with a white button up and jacket???

Let me call Aisha and see what she says.....

(10:37pm) So, Ai said I should do the warm slacks with a button and jacket since I will be indoors and still need to look as professional as possible!

Good to have friends that know what they're talking about!

Meanwhile, I used this video to prepare for my interview:



okay not really, but that joint is HILARIOUS!!!!!!

So, stay tuned! Maybe I'll have some wonderful news to blog about as opposed to the emotional dribble that's dominated my postings in the past month......

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

on writing about pain

sunday i endured possibly the most violently painful uterine cramps i have ever experienced in my life. they came quickly and unexpectedly like an earthquake in my lower abdomen, and but for my hands shaking uncontrollably, i really was paralyzed with pain and fear that i would not be recovering. to make matters worse, i had no idea where the couple of ibuprofen tablets i had were, so when i was finally able to somewhat get up, though still doubled over in pain, i had to tear apart a basket on my dining room table tryin to find a single dosage packet and then find my way to the kitchen for some tap water to swallow it down since i'd run out of bottled water the night before. it was a nightmare experience through and through. a nightmare i could not awaken from. the saving grace was my mom in full prayer warrior mode on speakerphone speaking scriptures of healing for me to try and meditate on. as the phone layed open near the middle of my bed, i tried to focus on what she was saying while fluctuating between being balled up and writhing in pain. i have never felt that degree of violence in my own body before. i mean, i've characteristically have bad cramps, but this was off the scale. some time during my mom's prayers of faith on my behalf and my having swallowed those couple of pills, i finally was able to stop writhing, though, still feeling a charliehorse in my uteris, i remained in a ball in the middle of my bed. she eventually ended her prayer and suggested a few times that i try to go to the emergency room. but, for obvious reasons, that was not an option for me. i decided to believe in our prayer that the pain would eventually settle and then dissipate, leaving me to relax and sleep for the remainder of the day. whereas it never quite dissipated (even now i'm feeling just a little unsettled in my lower stomach) i did eventually fall asleep.

monday was a beautifully warm late-fall december day. even in my ability to appreciate the newyorkcity that i love to walk and breath and watch and hold dear, my heart was heavy. and though i can probably accurately attribute my blues to the same physiological cause of my cramps, it still is the truth. as i enjoyed a leisure walk for 30 blocks, my heart was heavy. IS heavy. my father suggests that to continue to write about a brokenheart is to choose to remain in that place. but i don't believe that. it's important that i acknowledge that though i don't want to be broken, the truth is, i am. and the pain is sometimes as severe as the charliehorse tremor i felt in my uteris two days ago. not always. not everyday extreme pain. but some part of every day is unsettling if, when i find my mind wondering into the corner of the recent past, and out the door down the corridor of yesteryear. i fear that i'm not being as strong as i am somehow supposed to be, because it's arguable that either i'm letting or not letting the wound of a broken heart breathe enough to heal. sometimes, i don't feel strong at all. othertimes, i feel strong enough to ignore my heart for significant spans of time in a 24hr period. right now is not one of those spans of time. usually when i write, it is not one of those spans of time. but it's okay. i choose to chronicle this because it is cathartic, to let it out perhaps will facilitate letting it go at some point. i fear not writing about these moments will incur more psychological pain from having internalized thoughts that should be exposed.

i do, however, have faith that documenting these feelings will prove to help illustrate the measures by which i have grown, when i finally begin to grow out of this stage of my life. i don't pretend to anticipate when that growth will begin to take place; but then again, as a growing child you just look up one day and your favorite jeans are too shorts for your lanky legs. just outgrew them, without effort or intention. it was just design of your life to continue growing out of those pants. so, indeed, through design of my life, i will grow out of this tender heartbreak, maybe even with the fondness of having gotten some good use out of my favorite pair of jeans, my favorite and most significant love. (but, forreal, i ain't never felt this way about no pair of jeans.)

you know, not for nothing, i am thankful and so grateful for having the most encouraging pillars of truth in my life. no matter what i may be feeling, up or down, or all around the "wheel-o-emo" (i found out from one of my students that i'm "totally emo"), the people that love me are holding me down and feeding me the truth that i so need to hear, internalize, remember, believe. hold on to with a firm grip. my father's wisdom and love never fails. my mother's wisdom and love never fails. my brother's wisdom and love and motivation is like a can of popeye's spinach causing strength to pump me up and get ready to mentally knock this thing straight on its back. but in the same moment he esteems me for qualities that i think are causing me to be weak right now, insisting that they are not a liability, admonishing me to not let those qualities of being able to love so intensely die out as a result of this pain. "don't kill it," he said, "because that vulnerability is a conduit that enables us to receive the fullness of the reciprocity." and i don't want to choke out the vulnerability i have... well, not exactly. though in moments when i'm wiping streams of tears in between laughing at Fraser reruns, i wouldn't mind if my vulnerability dosage was just a fraction of its current potency.

anyway, so that i could stop wiping tears, i turned my computer on and started writing. i'm peace now that my tears are gone, and i actually can't wait to go back and re-read what i've written here..... although, i have about two hours before i have to be up and out of here on my way to an island that has more memories than i care to experience on any given tuesday or friday. but whatever. the good thing about today is that my students are testing outside of my classroom, so i don't have to conduct a lesson, just be on campus during the time of the test. so the sleep i should have been getting as i've been typing, perhaps i will make up for in my classroom.......

we shall see. nevertheless, the morrow awaits. so, as Fraser would say, off i go.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Essaywhuman!!!! THIS JUST IN!!!

CHECK IT!

So THE ROOTS will be featured as Jimmy Fallon's house band
for the new Late Night show on NBC!!! Show premier's March 2nd!!! I'm SOOOO trying to get to a taping! EARLY! (meanwhile, i can't believe Conan is really leaving *sniff*sniff* if i stand a chance of seeing him live i better get on the money!)

my desire to record a disco album

is further supported by the following:



not only because i love and support disco a'hunnid'percent, but also because i love and support shiny white (yet strangely angelic) body suits, and definitely love and support, if not thoroughly amused by, men in white overalls with pink short-sleeved button-ups and rollerskates (cause that fool is giving A'HUNNID'PERCENT!! weeeerrkkkk!)


The Boss!
(Lyrics by Nick Ashford & Valerie Simpson)

Fancy me
Thought I had my degree
In life and how love
Ought to be a run

I had a one step plan to prove it
Guide in my pocket for fools
Folly and fun
Love had to show me one thing

I was so right
So right
Thought I could turn emotion
On and off
I was so sure
So sure (I was so sure)
But love taught me
Who was who was who was the boss
(Taught me who was who was the boss)

I'd defy
Anyone who claimed that I
Didn't control whatever moved in my soul
I could tempt
Touch delight
Just because you fell for me
Why should I feel uptight
Love had to show me one thing:

I was so right
So right
Thought I could turn emotion
On and off
I was so sure
So sure (I was so sure)
But love taught me
Who was who was who was the boss
(Taught me who was who was the boss)

Love taught me
Taught me
Taught me
Taught me

I was so right
So right
Thought I could turn emotion
On and off
I was so sure
So sure (I was so sure)
But love taught me
Who was who was who was the boss
(Taught me who was who was the boss)

Monday, December 08, 2008

subscriptions

i was just thinking: wouldn't it be cool if you could unsubscribe from feelings of love for a particular person? and, like, emotionally detach as soon as the subscription was over, like, "hmmm this isn't working.... i'd like to cancel my subscription..! And better yet, I'm sending back all the issues!" and then, THAT'S IT! No more delivery of feelings for that person! ah, L-Boogie said it best, it should all be so simple.


in other fake subscription news:
i'm so glad subscribed to "i love oatmeal now!" cause i really love oatmeal now. i'm currently enjoying my oatmeal prepared with pineapple juice, soy milk, pumpkin spice, brown sugar and butter! mmmmmmmm mm! (you haven't had oatmeal until you've sprinkled it with pumpkin spice, butter and brown sugar! that's a must for me these days!)

feeling

better.

comparatively.

from last week, to this.

i think being consumed with the energy of creative endeavors over the past week has helped to divert my heart's attention from the aforementioned unmentionable (so cheezy, i know). so that is progress. diverted attention is progress. although, technically, it's not really diverted attention if you're still sensitively keen to the fact that it really does suck (even if you don't go around all day telling people). so i guess that makes it comparative progress, whereas true progress will unfold when/if i ever truly FEEL that it DOES NOT SUCK, and that things are as they are for the best (i'm not yet convinced i will ever come to this resolution). whenever i stop thinking about that part of the magic that has gone away from my immediate reality (cause i miss that magical chemistry it seems we shared so much) perhaps for good, then i guess i really will be

feeling better.

.....bet.



(i really wish i didn't care.)

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Odetta: Soul-Stirrer, RIP

My daddy put me on to Odetta about a year or two ago. Although I saw her on Tavis earlier this year, I am saddened that I never got the opportunity to see her (or Miriam Makeba) perform live.


..............................................

Odetta: Soul-Stirrer, 1930-2008

Odetta
Odetta, pictured performing circa 1980
David Corio / Michael Ochs Archives / Getty Images

Rosa Parks was her No. 1 fan, and Martin Luther King Jr., called her the queen of American folk music. Odetta's stage presence was regal enough: planted on stage like an oak tree no one would dare cut down, wearing a guitar high on her chest, she could envelop Carnegie Hall with her powerful contralto as other vocalists might fill a phone booth. This was not some pruny European monarch but a stout, imperious queen of African-American music. She used that amazing instrument to bear witness to the pain and perseverance of her ancestors. Some folks sing songs. Odetta testified.


Her death on Dec. 2 in New York City at 77 from heart failure, coupled with that of South African singer Miriam Makeba three weeks ago, writes finis and fulfillment to 50 years of pursuing self-determination through song, of spreading the word through music. For a handful of black singers, their discography is an aural history, centuries deep, of abduction, enslavement, social and sexual abuse by the whites in power — and of the determination first to outlive the ignominy branded on the race, then to overcome it. In her commanding presence, charismatic delivery and determination to sing black truth to white power, Odetta was the female Paul Robeson. (Read a 1960 TIME profile of Odetta.)

Born in Birmingham, Ala., on New Year's Eve, 1930, and raised in Los Angeles, Odetta Holmes had a big voice early on; she was schooled in opera from the age of 13. Appearing in a tour of the musical Finian's Rainbow in her late teens, she started to lend her classical and musical-stage training to the folk repertoire around 1950. Like Harry Belafonte, Leon Bibb and Makeba, Odetta played the swanker nightclubs before the big (mostly white) folk-music surge kicked in later in the decade. Odetta Sings Ballads and Blues, the 1956 Tradition LP with definitively scalding interpretations of "Muleskinner, Easy Rider" and "God's Gonna Cut You Down," announced the arrival of a voice whose sonic and emotive power could raise the dead and reach the deaf.

During the folk boom, each Odetta gig, in coffee house or a concert hall, was a master class of work songs, folk songs, church songs, and an eloquent tutorial in raw American history. Identifiable from the first syllable, her voice fused the thrill of gospel, the techniques of art song, — the wisdom that subtlety sometimes trumps volume — and the desperate wail of blues. If a line could be drawn from Bessie Smith to Janis Joplin, from Mahalia Jackson to Maria Callas, it would have to go through Odetta.

Her resonance was literal, political — few civil rights rallies of the early '60s were complete without an Odetta rendition of "We shall Overcome" — and cultural. "The first thing that turned me on to folk singing was Odetta," Bob Dylan once said, and listening to that Tradition album helped persuade the young rocker to switch from electric to acoustic guitar. Odetta returned the favor in 1965, recording an LP of Dylan songs with an emphasis on the antiwar numbers rather than Dylan's sheaf of civil-rights ballads.

In later years Odetta collaborated on a dozen or more albums (dueting with Nanci Griffith, for instance, on Other Voices, Too. She recorded a collection of Christmas spirituals, and did tribute albums to Ella Fitzgerald, Leadbelly and blues thrushes of the 1930s. In her 60s and 70s she still could sing the hide off a traditional number. Evidence: this rendition of "Midnight Special."

For Odetta and many other survivors of the Civil Rights Movement, the election of Barack Obama as president signaled a fulfilling chapter in the struggle. As she sank toward death in New York City, Odetta had an Obama poster taped on the wall across from her bed. Hospitalized with kidney failure on Monday, she kept willing herself to live because, her manager Doug Yeager wrote on a fansite just before her death, "Odetta believes she is going to sing at Obama's inauguration and I believe that is the reason she is still alive."

She sang of the past, and for the future. Come Jan. 20, her songs will be heard on the internal iTunes of the people she touched. Some voices can never be stilled.

See the 100 best albums of all time.


Tuesday, December 02, 2008

men...

so.
as i stand in the wake of accepting that the man i've loved unconditionally for the better part of two years does not, in fact, feel the same way for me (and, apparently, never will), i get a phone call at midnight tonight from another person who "just decided to call" and share that though we do not speak or even see each other very often that he does love me, loves everything about me, "your spirit, your beauty, how talented and inspiring you are, how caring and warm and funny you are" he said "i don't care how it sounds, shoot... i love you!" and it didn't necessarily take me by surprise because when we WERE spending time together, it seemed as if this was something where love COULD develop if we LET it. (i just figured neither one of us was in a position to let it truly develop -me being in love with someone else and him having other issues- and we eventually stopped seeing each other.) so i let him talk some more (i mean, wouldn't you!) and he eventually apologized for something that had happened between us shortly after we met, that i had clear forgotten about because, well, i'm not one to hold on to those kinds of things. but it still bothered him all of this time that this situation had taken place. he said that i was too special of a person to him to not fully explain himself and extend a sincere apology, and that there is just something special about me that he hasn't been able to shake off. after being so open he casually laid the disclaimer that he's in no way saying that he's trying to spend the rest of his life with me and was quick to acknowledge his own character flaws, which i'm FULLY aware of, but said at the end of the day i "deserve to know that someone out here loves" me..... the crazy thing is that he didn't even know, i mean had no way of knowing, that i'm currently living out a personal heartbreak moment in my own life, and that, as far as i'm concerned (right now, anyway), LATER for all this -love- business. (not "never" but LATER!) i thanked him for his words, suggested perhaps God was speaking through him at the very moment, to encourage my faith that the same energy i put into loving someone can be redirected at me in a mutual way. i told him what i'd been going through the past couple of days, and that whereas his words were a balm to my soul at that moment, i'm just taking them in for THIS moment. i told him that i'm going into hibernation for now so that i can really get past this other thing once and for all, and that since i have no idea how long it will take, i'm not really tryin to think about loving or love from anyone else. he said he understood, but insisted that he was going to be there for me (what he say?? be "my rock in the middle of this tidle wave!") to tell the truth i'm really thinking, "*chuckle* yeah... okay.... we'll see." (I'm not gonna hold my breath on that one.) he also said i deserve to receive the kind of love that i give. and i believe that, i do. i just don't know that i understand how deserving that kind of love works in conjunction with actually ATTAINING it with one particular person, and it be mutual. but that's not for me to figure out right now. right now i have to figure out how to let go of this other lovejones that has overstayed its welcome.

(.......sigh.... men.)

i'm going to sleep.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

detox

detoxify yourself, love, detoxify yourself,
from the illusion of love detox.
from the contusion that love unrequited may bring,
sleep until spring, if you must.
that times were good, you should soon forget,
for remembering leads to great sorrow.
that you soon may forget gives birth to new hope,
yes, TRUE LOVE is discovered tomorrow.
and if not tomorrow, true love then please sleep,
so that i may forego desire to weep.
and if i weep, Dear Lord, may you cleanse
desire to love again this one man.
so, detoxify yourself, love, detoxify yourself,
from the illusion of love detox.
Remedy, i beg thee, reveal unto me
the key that i need to detox.


.......
tears...too..many..please.go.away.
tears.toomany....please...goaway.
tearstoo.many....pleasegoaway.
tearstoomany.please..go...away.
tears...too..many..pleasegoaway.
tears.toomany.please.go.away...
tearstoomanyplease.goaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tearstoomanypleasegoaway.
tears
too
many
please
goaway.....

unless,
you're tears of joy,
then. by all means. stay.
----

"Though his voice may shatter your dreams
as the north wind lays waste the garden.

For even as love crowns you so shall he crucify you.
Even as he is for your growth so is he for your pruning.

Even as he ascends to your height
and caresses your tenderest branches
that quiver in the sun,

So shall he descend to your roots
and shake them in their clinging to the earth.

Like sheaves of corn
he gathers you unto himself.

He threshes you
to make you naked.

He sifts you to free you from your husks.

He grinds you to whiteness.

He kneads you until you are pliant;

And then he assigns you to his sacred fire,
that you may become sacred bread
for God's sacred feast.

All these things shall love do unto you
that you may know the secrets of your heart,
and in that knowledge
become a fragment of Life's heart.

But if in your fear
you would seek only love's peace
and love's pleasure,

Then it is better for you
that you cover your nakedness
and pass out of love's threshing-floor,

Into the seasonless world where you shall laugh,
but not all of your laughter,
and weep, but not all of your tears.

Love gives naught but itself
and takes naught but from itself.

Love possesses not
nor would it be possessed;

For love is sufficient unto love."

--Khalil Gibran

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Pondicherry

I know now is probably the worst possible time to be daydreaming of visiting India (and I do pray for the victims of the terrorist attack and for peace to come into the midst of this horrible tragedy) but about two weeks ago I heard the most unbelievably amazing story of how, years ago, the hand of God led a then thirty-something year old English man, who is half Indian and half African, and had been adopted into an English family as an infant, to Pondicherry, India in the most inexplicable set of circumstances, to meet his birthmother. I probably don't remember all the details of the story as it was told on that Sunday at church (he was testifying to God's goodness and faithfulness in answering a long standing prayer that he find his birthmother) but the story went something like: As a piano player he'd been hired on a few cruiseship gigs, and this particular cruise was going to three destinations in India, one being Pondicherry. He thought it interesting that he was going to India, since he was half Indian and had never been, but also thought it was a strange coincidence that he was going to the area of Pondicherry, which is where he was told his mother was from. Though this was a wonderful "coincidence" he didn't get too excited about it, especially because he'd been trying to find her for years past. As the cruise tour got underway, it turned out that some type of major inclement weather was imminent and the cruise ship captain decided that they would have to dock at a city a few hours away from Pondicherry but they would not be able to continue on to the city itself. In his disappointment of having come so close, he mentioned the story of how his birthmother is believed to be in or from Pondicherry and that he couldn't believe he was so close and would not be able to see where she is from. After hearing this, the cruise director arranged for the guy to get ground transportation from the city where the ship docked into Pondicherry, which was only three or four hours away by motorcoach. The guy couldn't believe that he was being allowed (given favor) to go afterall, and got a few friends together for the day trip. Once they got into the city, he mentioned that there was no sight of the threatening storm that curtailed the cruise trip at all and remarked on the beautiful landscaping, architecture, and people were so vibrantly dressed and full of color from the array of silk saris. He got out of the motorcoach and decided to meander through the middle of the town by himself, content that he was in the land where his birthmother had been born. Because Pondicherry is one of India's few French territories, he didn't really speak to anyone but just walked around to soak in the gorgeous sunlit city. He found himself in front of a school and "curiosity" urged him to go in. Once inside the main foyer of the school and inquiring if the matron spoke English he decided to inquire about records of former students, thinking perhaps there was a chance his mother had studied there. He asked about a former student, just for fun I'll call Genevieve La'Vie. And as it turned out that not only did the matron know of a former student by the name of Genevieve La'Vie, but she was currently a professor there at the school and teaching a class in session that very moment! His heart almost stopped as he asked if he'd be able to go up to her classroom to see her. The matron responded that visitors were not allowed while class was in session, but once the session ended he would be able to go up. So for the next half hour or so, here he stood with the possibility that, at age 31 in the middle of a cruise gig to Pondicherry, he could possibly be standing within a few feet from the woman who had given him life. Finally the class ended and as the students filed out of the room he found a way to put one foot in front of the other until he was standing at the doorway of her classroom. But, he didn't go right in; he stood for a little while longer and watched the woman before deciding that he was actually going to go in and speak to her. As he entered the room she didn't notice him straightaway, and he sat at a desk when she finally looked up and asked in French if she could help him. He answered asking if her name was Genevieve La'Vie and if she spoke English and she did. She asked if he was a British student visiting the university, he said that he was not. "Then why are you here?" she asked, "How may I help you." "I think you are my mother," he anwered. She looked at him. "Why would you think that?" And he went on to tell her that he was a pianist working on a cruise ship from England and how he was adopted into an English family as an infant though he is half African and half Indian with his birthmother named Genevieve La'Vie from Pondicherry. She looked at him for a minute, and said "I think you are my son." And when he stood up they embraced for what seemed like an eternity though it was probably more like ten minutes. With tears in her eyes she said, "This is the Lord's doing, the Lord has brought you back to me so that I can ask that you forgive me. I've never gotten over having given you up and I've only had the Lord to lean on in my grief. He has done this, he has brought us together!" He said that up until that point, he'd been raised in a Christian home but never really came to know and understand Christ as Lord, as a gracious, merciful God that would answer any prayer in the most unpredictable, phenomenal way. But at that moment, with his mother, whom he'd never met, standing there with tears in her eyes asking his forgiveness and testifying of the love of God and his grace in bringing them together, there was no way he could turn a blind eye to goodness and faithfulness of God... So, his story basically ended at that scene there in the classroom and how it led directly to his belief and salvation in Christ, which is a beautiful story through and through. But ever since hearing it, I cannot stop thinking about this place in India called PONDICHERRY. It just sounds like a delicious place where dreams come true! So I finally researched it a bit and found this INTERESTING ARTICLE and these BEAUTIFUL PHOTOGRAPHS both published earlier this year. So maybe one day with God's help I'll make it to Pondicherry myself and have a wonderful life-changing blessing of a trip!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

That Slumdog love be real.

I used my free-movie-Tuesdays to watch Slumdog Millionaire this evening.



(*Sigh* beautifully, painstakingly, heartbreakingly, love-prevailingly worth seeing. more than once. see it.)

So..........much like "eternal sunshine" it further embeds [in my mind] the notion that perhaps there really is no defense against a love that you genuinely feel is determined to be... if that torch is lit and your faith/hope refuses to let you extinguish or put it down, i guess you carry that joint forward until the closing scene and credits role. (or........ until. you realize you're not the main character of a written movie script. you realize you really are the only one carrying the torch. or you realize any number of other things that run the risk of extinguishing that torch in your grip.)

Well.... I say:
Long live {the love of} Jamal&Latika. and Joelly&Tangerine. Harry&Sally.
and whoever else has a shaky lovestory blooming in the most authentic of ways.

I tend to believe that art imitates life, anyway.

Monday, November 24, 2008

RIP MC Breed



Man..... I'm just finding out that MC Breed passed away on Saturday due to kidney failure, at age 37. Young age. Apparently, from one of the article read, it seems that prior to September he didn't even know he was ill. This is what I'm saying, death seems to just sneak up on people and sometimes there's nothing they can do about it. Even though I haven't really thought about Breed since I was about 13 or 14 years old, just listening to "Ain't No Future In Yo' Frontin" takes me back to that time period. I mean the intro alone takes me back to Los Angeles in 1993 when me and Shay Shay used to be in 8th or 9th grade running around singing rap lyrics we probably had no business singing! I just watched the video for "Frontin" though and that one was pretty cool. It took me there! Matterfact, one of my favorite lines in the song is very appropriate right about now with Barack'n'nem coming through in a few weeks: If I was the president then I would state fact/Leave it up to me I'd paint the White house BLACK/There ain't no future in yo' frontin! Aw, man. Well, you know. This just futher solidifies that you just do not know how much time you'll be blessed with in this reality, which is why I feel so passionately and tend to say "I love you" so freakin' much.

i read the most interesting article today

written by Malcolm Gladwell (author of The Tipping Point and Blink)entitled "Late Bloomers" that appeared in a recent issue of The New Yorker. I can't remember how I stumbled upon the piece, but, feeling that my own personal blooms seem to be taking their precious time, I was immediately drawn in:


Excerpt from Late Bloomers:

"Ben Fountain’s rise sounds like a familiar story: the young man from the provinces suddenly takes the literary world by storm. But Ben Fountain’s success was far from sudden. He quit his job at Akin, Gump in 1988. For every story he published in those early years, he had at least thirty rejections. The novel that he put away in a drawer took him four years. The dark period lasted for the entire second half of the nineteen-nineties. His breakthrough with “Brief Encounters” came in 2006, eighteen years after he first sat down to write at his kitchen table. The “young” writer from the provinces took the literary world by storm at the age of forty-eight."

He goes on to draw the most interesting comparisons and contrasts of the life experiences and journeys toward success as experienced by Picasso (early in life) and Cezanne (late in life). He uses their trajectories (as well as a couple of other authors) to elaborate on not only the Late Bloomer's somewhat experimental, trial-and-error way to success versus the young prodigy's happenstance of talent and timing occurring early in life, but also points out how the successes of many Late Bloomers is usually a direct result of a core group of individuals on whose shoulders the Bloomer stands. He speaks about Cezanne's group of support in great detail, and that BUT FOR THEM we would not know of the master painter Paul Cezanne (who has his first solo painting show at age 51)!!! And so, I was really encouraged to read someone else's take (Gladwell) on an idea that I've spent a lot of time thinking about.... I know that I'll eventually be in full bloom, cause, you know, this caccoon is getting a bit tight!

Friday, November 21, 2008

"There is no perfect person for you

there should be a perfect balance, though, with the person you love."
--something I just heard and could dig.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

i've never heard of this translation...

...but it is really speaking to me right now.
PSALM 118 (CONTEMPORARY ENGLISH VERSION)
The LORD Is Always Merciful
1Tell the LORD

how thankful you are,

because he is kind

and always merciful.

2Let Israel shout,

"God is always merciful!"

3Let the family of Aaron

the priest shout,

"God is always merciful!"

4Let every true worshiper

of the LORD shout,

"God is always merciful!"

5When I was really hurting,

I prayed to the LORD.

He answered my prayer,

and took my worries away.

6The LORD is on my side,

and I am not afraid

of what others can do to me.

7With the LORD on my side,

I will defeat all

of my hateful enemies.

8It is better to trust the LORD

for protection

than to trust anyone else,

9including strong leaders.

10Nations surrounded me,

but I got rid of them

by the power of the LORD.

11They attacked from all sides,

but I got rid of them

by the power of the LORD.

12They swarmed around like bees,

but by the power of the LORD,

I got rid of them

and their fiery sting.

13Their attacks were so fierce

that I nearly fell,

but the LORD helped me.

14My power and my strength

come from the LORD,

and he has saved me.

15From the tents of God's people

come shouts of victory:

"The LORD is powerful!

16With his mighty arm

the LORD wins victories!

The LORD is powerful!"

17And so my life is safe,

and I will live to tell

what the LORD has done.

18He punished me terribly,

but he did not let death

lay its hands on me.

19Open the gates of justice!

I will enter and tell the LORD

how thankful I am.

20Here is the gate of the LORD!

Everyone who does right

may enter this gate.

21I praise the LORD

for answering my prayers

and saving me.

22The stone that the builders

tossed aside

has now become

the most important stone.

23The LORD has done this,

and it is amazing to us.

24This day belongs to the LORD!

Let's celebrate

and be glad today.

25We'll ask the LORD to save us!

We'll sincerely ask the LORD

to let us win.

26God bless the one who comes

in the name of the LORD!

We praise you from here

in the house of the LORD.

27The LORD is our God,

and he has given us light!

Start the celebration!

March with palm branches

all the way to the altar. [a] 28The LORD is my God!

I will praise him and tell him

how thankful I am.

29Tell the LORD

how thankful you are,

because he is kind

and always merciful.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

I'm officially crushing on Big Daddy Kane!!!

To the Honorable Tamir Brown & Lyrics To Go Fam!

Let me start by congratulating you all on the MONUMENTAL success of celebrating and honoring the legendary Big Daddy Kane’s “20 Years in the Game” last night at B.B. Kings!



Coming from an all around music-lover, including but not limited to Hip-Hop, to be in the building for such a musically historical moment was unprecedented! To see Kane perform all of his classics, from “Smooth Operator” to “I Get The Job Done” in his “I’m forty-years-old and still KILLIN’ THE GAME!!!” was to witness official Hip-Hop for grown folks (not to mention the progression of the lifestyle and culture of Hip-Hop) in a real way. I think I officially got a crush on Kane last night watching him rock the mic and straight groove like it was 1988! And who knew ALL the Juice Crew legends would be coming to stage: Biz Markie, Marley Marl! Eric B showing love! Swizz Beats looking like he was about to start tearing up while giving Kane props! TJ Swan singing all the old school hooks! Seeing Busta Rhymes and Ice T show love in the building! But what I found just as impressive was the fact that Kane chose to rock it with a LIVE BAND in collaboration with his two DJs! That always takes a show, Hip-Hop or otherwise, to another level as they did by playing James Brown/Big Daddy Kane mash-ups! Naturally, there is no Hip-Hop without James Brown! From “Say It Loud/I’m Black and I’m Proud” to bigging up how we’re all a part of Obama’s victory with “Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now”, Big Daddy Kane honored his twenty years and even more on that stage last night! I’m so pleased I got to witness it! That SOLD OUT crowd was glad to be a part of it! And I know that this success on your part is one of many that have taken place, and many more that will take place moving forward!

LET’S GET IT, LET’S GO!!
Onelove,
(fly)Mai!

---

(then later on...!)
I was on such a high after the Big Daddy Kane show that I decided to try my hand at getting into the Blue Note to see my friends Soul Cycle play the late late show! The admission was $10, but I totally didn't have $10 to go into a show last night (even the Big Daddy Kane ticket was a hook-up thanks to Tamir!) But I was like, "I can either go home right now and sit in front of my computer... (which I spend a lot of time doing!) OR I can go down to the Blue Note and see if they'll let me in...!" So I get there about 12:30AM and the show hasn't started yet, and I ask what appeared to be the GM and the concierge if Soul Cycle was playing tonight (of course I already knew that they were!) They both say yes and that it was ten dollars to go in... I go, "Hmm, so I don't actually HAVE $10 but do you think I'd be able to stand and watch the show???" They're both like "Sorry, everyone has to pay admission.. which is $10." Now, I know for a fact that a) EVERYONE does not have to pay admission (otherwise, guestlists wouldn't exist), and that b) the GM reserves the right to let anyone in he darn well pleases! But I didn't press the issue. I just figured I'd stand out in the foyer until they let me in, or until the music started so I could get a little taste before I'd decided to leave. I mean, come on! It was a late late show that my friends were playing! So as I stood, a group of people started coming in, and one guy made small talk with me about the fact that he manufactures flyers and handbills, asking if I needed any made (really random, right!) I told him I didn't need any flyers, but I did however need $10 to go in and see the show! He smiled like, "Are waiting for someone to pay for you to come in?" I said, "No, I'm just waiting for the show to begin..." cause I was really waiting for WHATEVER was going to happen! So, he's like "Well, I hope you make it in..." and goes on through the door. Shortly thereafter, the GM is like, "Come on in and enjoy the show!" I'm like "Oh! OKAY!!! Thank you!!!" I didn't really know if he'd been listening and decided to let me in, or if the guy had paid for my admission, but I did hop my happy self right on through the door! And had even more of a ball than I did at the BDK show!!! I saw a handful of friends I hadn't seen in a while which is always love, and more importantly, I got to sit back and relax and breath in and be and DREAM those musical revelries I love so much, that make me the bizarre bird of paradise I am; who I love to be. There was one song they played, called Natural Light, and by the end of the song I actually had tears in my eyes. It really was where I needed to be and what I needed to hear at that very moment. Like always, the show ended way before I was ready for it to, but when I went to thank the GM for letting me in he said "No problem, baby! I know how it is. I'm glad you enjoyed yourself..." He don't even know the half. Between my heart2heart with Melissa (Tamir's girlfriend) earlier in the evening, experiencing Kane, then Soul Cycle, then coming home and getting a word of encouragement from one of my fellow Bisons, Miss Alta Cannady, the last 12 of the past 24hrs has really proven that even when you are feeling at your wits end, things can turn on a dime (if even for a few precious moments) and show you that you're very much still alive to live in the good times! Selah!

Friday, November 14, 2008

We are all Hussein!

I'm a little late but I came across this a while back and meant to make mention of it when I later remembered... so here goes:

NEW YORK TIMES
Published: June 29, 2008

Emily Nordling has never met a Muslim, at least not to her knowledge. But this spring, Ms. Nordling, a 19-year-old student from Fort Thomas, Ky., gave herself a new middle name on Facebook, mimicking her boyfriend and shocking her father.

“Emily Hussein Nordling,” her entry now reads.

With her decision, she joined a growing band of supporters of Senator Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, who are expressing solidarity with him by informally adopting his middle name.

The result is a group of unlikely-sounding Husseins: Jewish and Catholic, Hispanic and Asian and Italian-American, from Jaime Hussein Alvarez of Washington, D.C., to Kelly Hussein Crowley of Norman, Okla., to Sarah Beth Hussein Frumkin of Chicago.

Jeff Strabone of Brooklyn now signs credit card receipts with his newly assumed middle name, while Dan O’Maley of Washington, D.C., jiggered his e-mail account so his name would appear as “D. Hussein O’Maley.” Alex Enderle made the switch online along with several other Obama volunteers from Columbus, Ohio, and now friends greet him that way in person, too.

Mr. Obama is a Christian, not a Muslim. Hussein is a family name inherited from a Kenyan father he barely knew, who was born a Muslim and died an atheist. But the name has become a political liability. Some critics on cable television talk shows dwell on it, while others, on blogs or in e-mail messages, use it to falsely assert that Mr. Obama is a Muslim or, more fantastically, a terrorist.

“I am sick of Republicans pronouncing Barack Obama’s name like it was some sort of cuss word,” Mr. Strabone wrote in a manifesto titled “We Are All Hussein” that he posted on his own blog and on dailykos.com.

So like the residents of Billings, Mont., who reacted to a series of anti-Semitic incidents in 1993 with a townwide display of menorahs in their front windows, these supporters are brandishing the name themselves.

“My name is such a vanilla, white-girl American name,” said Ashley Holmes of Indianapolis, who changed her name online “to show how little meaning ‘Hussein’ really has.”

The movement is hardly a mass one, and it has taken place mostly online, the digital equivalent of wearing a button with a clever, attention-getting message. A search revealed hundreds of participants across the country, along with a YouTube video and bumper stickers promoting the idea. Legally changing names is too much hassle, participants say, so they use “Hussein” on Facebook and in blog posts and comments on sites like nytimes.com, dailykos.com and mybarackobama.com, the campaign’s networking site.

New Husseins began to crop up online as far back as last fall. But more joined up in February after a conservative radio host, Bill Cunningham, used Mr. Obama’s middle name three times and disparaged him while introducing Senator John McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee, at a campaign rally. (Mr. McCain repudiated Mr. Cunningham’s comments).

The practice has been proliferating ever since. In interviews, several Obama supporters said they dreamed up the idea on their own, with no input from the campaign and little knowledge that others shared their thought.

Some said they were inspired by movies, including “Spartacus,” the 1960 epic about a Roman slave whose peers protect him by calling out “I am Spartacus!” to Roman soldiers, and “In and Out,” a 1997 comedy about a gay high school teacher whose students protest his firing by proclaiming that they are all gay as well.

“It’s one of those things that just takes off, because everybody got it right away,” said Stephanie Miller, a left-leaning comedian who blurted out the idea one day during a broadcast of her syndicated radio talk show and repeated it on CNN.

Ms. Miller and her fellow new Husseins are embracing the traditionally Muslim name even as the Obama campaign shies away from Muslim associations. Campaign workers ushered two women in head scarves out of a camera’s range at a rally this month in Detroit. (The campaign has apologized.) Aides canceled a December appearance on behalf of Mr. Obama by Representative Keith Ellison, a Minnesota Democrat and the first Muslim congressman.

Mr. Obama may be more enthusiastic, judging from his response at a Chicago fund-raiser two weeks ago. When he saw that Richard Fizdale, a longtime contributor, wore “Hussein” on his name tag, Mr. Obama broke into a huge grin, Mr. Fizdale said.

“The theory was, we’re all Hussein,” Mr. Obama said to the crowd later, explaining Mr. Fizdale’s gesture.

Some Obama supporters say they were moved to action because of what their own friends, neighbors and relatives were saying about their candidate. Mark Elrod, a political science professor at Harding University in Searcy, Ark., is organizing students and friends to declare their Husseinhood on Facebook on Aug. 4, Mr. Obama’s birthday.

Ms. Nordling changed her name after volunteering for Mr. Obama before the Kentucky primary.

“People would not listen to what you were saying on the phone or on their doorstep because they thought he was Muslim,” she said.

Ms. Nordling’s uncle liked the idea so much that he joined the same Facebook group that she had. But when her father saw her new online moniker, he was incredulous.

“He actually thought I was going to convert to Islam,” Ms. Nordling said.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Obamafication of the Negro


The Obamafication of the Negro*
by Maisha G. Woodson



I thought this would be a cool and appropriate title for an essay chronicling the emergence and catapulting of Obama into/beyond his super-iconic-BARACKstar status. I feel like I should have something extremely clever and/or poignant to say here, but let's see what happens by the end of the essay...!

[So the essay would start off like this:] Examples of the "Obamafication" of said Negro- and large parts of other races, ethnicities and the rest of the world- is evident in the immediate Barack/Michelle Obama naming phenomenon where already hundreds of babies around the globe, from Kenya to the States, are being named after our President and First Lady-elect (and if babies aren't being named after Barack, parents may feel even more comfortable with giving their children ethnically and culturally relevant, meaningful names without the backlash of "name discrimination" once the child becomes an adult); also, the name "OBAMA" has now become a greeting, chant, and all around crowd-hyping catch-phrase; as the term "First Lady" has become a greeting already being directed at me a few times in the past week, e.g. "Good Morning, First Lady!" and so on; it seems that Sunday, November 9, 2008 was officially observed as "Barack Obama Day" in many churches and houses of the Lord here in NYC, and I'm sure around the country where parishioners, mainly African American, arrived decked in Obama gear from head to toe, singing the praises of Barack ("Obaaaaa-ma! Blessed be Ba-rack....!" or "I voted for O-baaaaaa-mah! Now he's pres-i-deeeent!") and giving thanks to God for this "miracle" that many -young and old- believed they'd never live to see (I myself attended a Barack "Ba-runch" Sunday afternoon where much if not all conversation was directed towards the President-elect's historic election and victory, even with obvious racism and cultural intolerance still running rampant in this country. All kinds of Barack-inspired greetings filled the place as people entered the brunch like, "Happy Obama Reign!"); since Barack's election, I receive, forward or compose no less than 5 Barack Obama-related emails in a 24-hr period (and if it's not emails, I'm reading all sorts of articles about him and his family or pending administration online- and I love reading about Rahm Emanuel as much as I love reading about Barack!); There are probably more songs written about or featuring Barack Obama than any other president in history, not to mention artwork and Obama paraphrenalia being massed produced for side hustles across town; also, in regards to the "Obamafication of the Negro" (and the entire world), it seems that Michelle and her girls have become fashion icons with so much influence that the outfits that they chose to wear for the election day celebration (and other public engagements like the J. Crew outfit on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno") have sold out in record numbers in other parts of the world (And, YES, I do mean that infamous, questionable black-n-red dress that every black person I know has had a problem with. For the record, I decided on election night that even though I may not have chosen THAT particular number to debut in as First Lady-elect, I was not going to hate on the black-n-red dress. I respect the black-n-red dress, I even like it... in a certain type of lighting, mainly low. But still.. I'm not hating); and, lastly, the all-encompassing euphoric optimism (which is steadily countering the jaded cynical belief of nothing having changed since Barack's election) that is lingering around the hood yet is far-reaching all the way across oceans into other continents (I got an email today from an Australian client of mine expressing her happiness for our new president and her HOPEs that his term(s) in office will leave the world better off!) is clear indication that the "Obamafication of the Negro" (worldwide) is here to stay! Not to mention how folk are REALLY aspiring for that Barack/Michelle/OUR family is what's most important to US kind of love (My parents got it... and maybe your family is similar- or maybe not, but I think it's within reach for those of us who really want that type of relationship and family unit)!! I'm sure there are plenty of more examples of this "Obamafication" that I speak of, but I, for one, welcome it, embrace it, and will do my part to see that its positive effect continues past this moment and inspires life-changing, momumental, personal CHANGE in all of us-- one way or another! OBAMA!!!


*Of course this is a take on the classic best-seller "The Mis-Education of the Negro" by Carter G. Woodson, originally published in 1933, theorizing how the indoctrination and conditioning of Negros taught us to seek out inferior positioning in the greater society of which we are a part, preventing us from thinking and doing for ourselves. I, hereby, theorize that the "Obamafication of the Negro" will condition this generation of Negroes, et al. (and generations to come) to seek out the highest possible positioning in society and to proactively bring about unprecedented leadership of the changing world.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

why do i continue to torture myself????

.................(sigh)......... guess it's all on account of being a girl.... that loves a boy.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

SLC in the Building!! (that is THE WHITE HOUSE!!!)


SO! It turns out that Barack's Chief-of-Staff is fellow Sarah Lawrence College alumnus, Rahm Emanuel!!!!! What I really love about Rahm Emauel is the fact that he's classically trained in ballet!!! But like Billy Eliot, "he's not a puff!!!" I also learned that one of the characters from the West Wing is based on him!! This administration is about to be sooo dope!!! ..Other than that, I heard that Rahm is pretty BOUT IT when it comes to being in charge! Apparently one of his nicknames is Rahm-bo!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

OFFICIAL CHANGE!

A Change! A Change! Has come overrrr WE!!!!!! I'm soooooooooo overwhelmed. PRESIDENT ELECT BARACK OBAMA IS IN THE BUILDING!!!! I've been up since 4:30am, no scratch that! I've been waiting 29years for this moment!!!!!! I'm officially in love with Barack and Michelle, and I cannot wait to see what CHANGE will take hold!!!!!!!

CHANGE!

If anybody asks you, how I'm voting, HOW I'm voting, SOON! Oh oh, I'm votin'4Obama! I'm votin4Obaaaama! I'm votin4Obaaama! To be PRESIDENT!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

sometimes i feel

so much like a work in progress....................................


that i feel more like


a work in digress.



but
thats a story
for another day.

Friday, October 24, 2008

So Joy wants me to

dress up like Captain Grocery Bag again this year....!
(we'll see.....!)








Sunday, October 19, 2008

hands down

the best Howard Homecoming I've ever experienced.
and i almost didn't go.


!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


need sleep.
now.


(BISON!)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

the funn(k)iest nickname i've ever been called...



is


Madame WINGSPAN!!!!!!

:) :) :o) :) :)



(...because of how i dance...)
word.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

as i held her baby boy


i couldn't help but wonder if he could see her in his dreams. i mean, ever so often, he'd crack a lil' three week old smile, as if he was having the most amusing interaction with some wonderful being we will never know about. so, it really got me thinking, what could a three week old baby really be seeing as he sleeps for hours upon hours? especially as his little unconscious grin fades in and out of view.. I'D LIKE TO believe that maybe God is letting him spend "time" with his mommy in his dreams during this time, since he won't be seeing her as he gets older...

i don't know if that makes sense. but that thought makes me happy.

here today

gone tomorrow, is soo not a cliche. it's becoming harder to understand and very mind-consuming how every time you wake up, it could be your last. and there's no way to know if it will be your last. and if it is, why your time has come to expire at this point. i have to stop thinking about this so much. and i suppose i will. but between recent experiences and daily headlines, it's all around. i am, however, ever grateful for each day i do awaken, and will continue to move forward while i am here. afterall, les brown once said that the cemetary is full of unrealized potential.

Monday, October 13, 2008

the new season

began three weeks ago today.
it has, so far, not been a happy nor peaceful season
overall. though i find happy moments.
but it's only the beginning.

....
i wish i could change some things
i wish some things were going a bit better.
i wish i didn't have to wonder about so much right now.

....
but, this is life. taking place.
and as long as i'm alive,
i'm moving forward.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

For my Cheryl


CHERYL ELIZABETH WELLS GORDON
May 12, 1978 - September 22, 2008

My heart wants to express the meaningful devastation I feel here today, but I won't for two reasons: I realize that the devastation I feel resonates within every person who is present and accounted for in this room, but more importantly, MOST importantly, it is imperative that I express my joy and gratitude for having experienced this friendship. My friendship, more like kinship, with Cheryl Wells began 17 years ago, and she has been a significant part of my life's foundation since. She is one of the significant threads that weave the fabric of my life together so beautifully. I currently live in New York City, but my love and pure fondness for Cheryl has never been hindered by the distance. As her family and my own will tell you, whether I was in town for 24hours or for five days, it was routine that I drop in at the restaurant to see Shay. I wouldn't even call to tell her I was in town and coming through because I loved to surprise her; just pop in with my goofy grin and come find her. And as soon as we'd see one another, it was proof, evidence that even through busy lives and miles of distance, those two girls from back in the day, that bond had not gone anywhere. We always shared a welcoming, familiar hug and silly laughs while catching up on current life and reminiscing about years past. Most often than not she'd have to get back to someone's order in the kitchen, though I was more than happy to keep her from getting to it. But, when we'd part company it was understood that too much time should not pass before we spoke again, and that we love one another. She'd say, "I know you're gonna pop back in here at any point, so I'll be looking for you." And even then I hated to say goodbye, see you next time, because I loved my friend so much and miss the days when we could see one another on a regular basis. 
Even through marriage, she was always Shay Shay Wells to me, the girl I met in 8th grade who I loved to sing SWV songs with; who loved to go to the Disney Store to decorate–or redecorate–her bedroom (the photo above is from her birthday at Disneyland!); whose house I could come by after school or on the weekends and stay for hours and eat and have a good ole time; who I could go to church with, whose family integrity was so similar to my own with two parents who loved Christ, providing a Godly, loving and protective foundation for their own and everyone else. I was very much at home in the Wells household and Cheryl was a sister to me. So I am trying to convince myself to make peace with the void that I will feel as the days, months and years go on. I try to find comfort in holding on to August 23, 2008, which is the last time I stood with Shay and hugged her tight and sang to the lil' one in her belly, and laughed out loud, and just got to spend what I now know were my last fleeting moments with a favorite sisterfriend. And, yes, I will hold on to the past 17 years as well, though I honestly didn't think it was expecting too much that we'd share 50 more as friends. 
To Dee Dee, I've known you for the same amount of time that I've known Shay, and I love you and cherish the countless moments that the three of us spent together. To Mrs. Wells, I don't think I am able to fully express my highest regard and esteem for you, so for now, I will only say that I love you. And to Robert and the rest of your family I express my love and pray your peace and joy moving forward.
Until we meet again…

Friday, October 03, 2008

for the first time, probably ever

i am not happy about making a trip home to cali.



.....and that's all i'm going to say about that.

i have to finish packing.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

more of the same

....in 9th grade me and shay wrote this rap of romeo and juliet for an english class project, and for years i've only been able to remember the first couple of verses. and i just realized, it just dawned on me that i had every intention to ask her if she remembered the rest of it. because she and i were the only two that knew it, and we loooooved to do it (that joint was the bomb).... and i didn't ask her.... i know that's kinda dumb and insignificant at this point. it's just........ something i thought about like right now :\ i won't be getting the rest of our rap....

---
9th Grade Romeo and Juliet Project
(for Ms. Whatshernames Class)

It's the R
the O
the M
the E
the O
Oh oh is he crazy
with Julie and the Friar holl'in BAAAAY-BEH!

Here's a lil story of the show
about a girl named Juliet and her Romeo
you see he loved her and she loved him
but there really was no way for their love to begin
So sit back relax and listen to the rhyme
that we created with our G'd up minds

You see a long long time ago
there was a lil freak named Romeo
he went to the jam to get Rose off his mind
when he saw Juliet in the Soul Train line
When the jam was through Julie hopped to her pad
to let the world know he was feeling sad
'cause she couldn't get the digits from her Romeo
she didn't want his dough
she just loved him so
But there was another guy
with Juliet on his mind
PARIS -- conceited! He was one of a kind!

When Romeo and Juliet went to the Friar
Romeo told Juliet his heart's desire:
Oooo girl
I love you so
never never never gon' let you go
Once I get my hands on youuuu
Oooo girl
I love you so
never never never gon' let you go
I hope you feel the same way too
("Boy, I do!!!")

-----
then nothing... i draw a blank everytime... i can't remember anything passed that point. I kept meaning to ask her if she remembered anything from the other parts we wrote together... i only remember the beginning of the story.. there was the whole play left that we'd translated with much skill, wit and precision.. we incorporated all these others nods and shout outs to the hip hop and r&b songs of the day (like Special K "I got a man/ What'cha man got to do with me/I got a man/I'm not try'na hear that see..." which was Juliet and Paris' dialogue, etc.) There was stuff about Mercutio and Tybalt.... and i just don't remember what it was.... (sigh.)
-----

i got a lil teary earlier when i was in the kitchen fixing my food. i don't know what happened exactly, but it hit me like bricks AGAIN that i'm not to ever see her again (in this reality as i know it). I don't think about that a lot, cause when i think about it, it's still very unbelievable. i can hear her laugh, her voice and see her moving so clearly... see her hands, and her hair styled the way she wore it forever. It doesn't FEEL like she's gone. I've never lost a loved one THIS close. Not someone that was a regular part of my life. so this is wayyy too much sometimes. we had 17 years and as far as I'm concerned, we still are scheduled for fifty more years of friendship, laughs and good food, laughs, more memories to make. but whatever. i guess we do not. i have to get over this grieving part and really accept it. but... it... feels like.. she's just at home, doing what she does..... and i need to give her a call later this week.....

Saturday, September 27, 2008

i finally called

mrs. wells... i wanted to speak with her but have been taking my time/avoiding it because i still haven't wanted to accept what i had to call her for. but too much time was passing, so i just called. she answered with a laugh from whomever she was there talking to, and i heard her melodious voice, "helllllooo" and the tears started streaming down my cheeks, but i just took a deep breath and said, "hi mrs. wells, this is maisha...." as the silent tears kept flowing. i apologized for taking so long to call her because it was too hard right now. she said she knew. that shay and i were like sisters. and that if it were the other way, if i had gone and shayshay was here it would be the exact same thing. "Shay loved to cry, you know..." I could tell she was smiling when she said this. she didn't tell me to stop crying. she told me that even two years after her father's passing, she might look over at shay riding in the car and see her tear-stained face because she missed her father so much. Or that in church she'd tearfully sing one of his favorite songs. (she was that heartbroken; and now they are together, i suppose.) she encouraged me to be thankful for the day i came to see shayshay about a month ago, even if it was for twenty minutes (note: i really could've and should've stayed longer), because it was such a happy last time together. she told me that Cheryl and I really were sisters, and i said i know because we'd been together for 17 years. she said that she will be holding on to all the time they spent together and I should do the same. shay was her bestfriend. they never left one another's sides. they lived around the corner from one another (shay with her husband in the house she grew up in, the house i spent so much time in, her mom in a lovely house within walking distance) and cooked in the same kitchen of their family restaurant. i told her, though i'm very close with parents, i've always admired the closeness they shared, and Cheryl's desire to stay there with her and not move away, not knowing that her time would be so short.

-----

((((real time thought: WHY am i writing this? this should not be reality.))))

----
we only spoke for a few minutes and she encouraged me to pray for her because she would continue to pray for me because the Bible says that we should pray for one another. she said that she really has appreciated my mom's support in coming to see her and her how her knowledge of Scripture has really encouraged her to be stronger. (both mrs. wells and my mom be preaching.) she ended by telling me she loved me, and i do love her so much. and now. i have to hold it together. until i am there. then i don't know what will happen.

----

i don't know that i'll eventually be okay with this. but i do know that time moves on.

Friday, September 26, 2008

I believe

the Lord is sovereign. and has the ability to not make mistakes. and in life eternal beyond this existence.






(so why is the wind
is still knocked
out of
me.)


(no tears tonight. i can't promise that they've all gone. but i've been out with another dear loved one for a good majority of the day and night. and it was a good day. live music, and lots of candy and ice cream. but the sky is now weeping on my behalf........ i need to go to sleep.)

Monday, September 22, 2008

(sigh) i should be sleeping now

i'm very tired and i have to be up
in about 5 and a half hours
for a two trek hr to work.
but i can't stop
thinking of shay.
right now.
ever.

she is an
inspiration.

she's done everything that i want to do.
that every girl wants to do.
in a very simple way.
with grace.
in the way SHE
was supposed to.
in thirty year's time.

she did the things that make life simply grand.
she married her first love
finished her degree in interior design
ran a business that she absolutely loved with her family
had a baby

love to shop... play golf.
it was like she got to experience retirement!

what's always been remarkable to me
is how she loved her family most
a close knit unit they are
mom, sister, aunt
they were always together, always.
and she was very much
a part of the thread, the glue
a portion of the family tapestry.

i love my life and my family. very much.
it's the life I HAVE to live. can't live anybody else's.
but i've always admired the cohesiveness
the togetherness, the oneness of the Wells family.
thank God they've been so close, because who knew
time would be so short. who, in their right mind,
would think time would be so short?

----
okay. i'm turning off my computer now.
as for my brain... we'll see if it goes into
standby for the next few hours
so i can sleep.

then came september

september has been creeping by so slowly
every other month, and even the summer
has seemed to whiz by.
then came september
and each day is taking its lazy time
to pass on by
and that's been quite alright with me.
i knew shay's baby was coming in september
so it was alright with me
that time was inching by
because that meant that
too much time had not passed
to call and wish her a congrats
"i have time to call her" i kept thinking
"it's too late to call her right now, she's probably sleeping.
it's only the middle of september. he probably came last week..
i have time to call her."

why didn't i just call?
i didn't even get to HEAR HER tell me
what it's like to be a mother, the mother of her baby.
i wanted to hear her tell me.
she wanted a baby for so long.
i wanted to hear everything she had to say
about finally having her baby boy.
we had a running joke,
"you call me!" she'd say,
"you know i'm bad with calling you back,
but you know that i love you. and i know
that i can count on you to call me.
so you call me!"

i knew the arrangement.
I was supposed to call HER.

i didn't call.

and deedee did. three hours ago.
and now this has been the longest three hours
of the longest september
of my life.

and because i didn't call
when i thought to call
even if it was too late
i will not get to hear what a bestFRIEND had to say
about having her baby.

could it be

that shayshay loved the Lord so much, sooooo much, that there was nothing else for her to do here but go and be with Him? she loved God with her whole heart, and a heart attack took her away. could it be... that.... she reached out to God and he reached back to her heart... and His touch was so... so.... that His touch brought her home? that he sent a keepsake in her babyboy, but took her sweet self as a part of his perfect plan?


so much more to say.
i just don't want to resolve that
this is needed to be said.

.tear.


(((grief)))

i'm not the first one to ask this

people ask every day why something tragic like this happens...


but


why do the simple and happy die young?

why does tragedy strike one family
so many times within such a short time span?

why does a baby's mother die?

why does a mother have to bury more than one of her children?

why will we never know the answers.

why.

shayshay

i got a call from the little sister of my bestfriend from junior high and high school, telling me that Cheryl passed this morning.

Maisha this is DeeDee

Shayshay lil sister????

Yes. I'm not calling with good news. Shayshay..........passed away,
she said.

??????????WHAT??????????????
please tell me you're mistaken.....
(why she would be calling me with a mistake like this? I don't know
but it had to be.)

everything else she said is inconsequential.
Cheryl............died.

i listened in horror as Deedee got through the teary details.

then i called my mom, wailing in tears, grief taken over...
cause i just don't understand
how Shay, my dear Shay, MY SHAY....
the Shay who i always make a point to run and go see at the restaurant
even if i'm in town for only 24 hours
who i make a point to call every few months, even when she doesn't call me back
afterall, she's the busy one! She's married and running a family restaurant.

I didn't call this time.
I saw her three or four weeks ago
when she was 9 months pregnant
with her first child, a boy
and i hugged her tight and sang to her belly
and we laughed our usual laugh for about 15mins
and hugged and we knew we'd speak after the baby was born.
I couldn't remember her due date,
but i knew since it's now late september
he must've come.
Every night I'd think
I've got to call Shay, but it's too late to call..
I'll let her get her bearings with the baby, I'll call her later.

----

I didn't call because it was too late to call...
and now

it's too late to call.

As much as I stay on top of remaining in contact with people
I never thought I'd be writing that I waited too late to call someone.

----

Shay I love you so much, for loving me for a lifetime.
I know you're with the Lord now.
But that doesn't make this any better for us left here right now.

(p.s. i wanted to call your cell phone just now. just to see if....i could hear your voice, one last time, maybe the outgoing message or something would give me your voice. but i didn't know if that would be in poor taste or make me look extra crazy. so once again....for the last time, i did not call.)

----

I can't even imagine
what her mother
must be going
through.

Not only is this the second child to pass away by age 30,
but she buried her husband two years ago.

---

I just don't understand.
tragedy.

AUTUMN!!!!!!!!!

WHEW! A NEW SEASON IS IN THE BUILDING!!!
CAN YOU BELIEVE IT!

Wow...

(i got sidetracked and stopped typing.)

... one hour later.

i just got some tragic news. a tragedy has occurred. i can't even finish whatever i was going to write. it doesn't even matter anymore.