SO LONG, FAREWELL...
Friday, November 23, 2007
I’m talking about:
Praying grandmamas. Church fearin, big hat and fresh suit wearin, scripture quotin’ hymn sangin’, shoutin’ and moanin’ grandmamas. Deaconess. Sunday school teacher. Backbone. Big mama.
Working grandmamas. Maids. Cooks. Cotton Pickers. Nurses. Teachers. Secretaries. Civil servants. Factory workers. Working 12 hour shifts. Doing jobs our generation of women could never fathom. And still holding the dual roles of mother and wife. Keeping a clean house and a happy husband. Going without so that their families could have. Deferring their dreams so we could have ours. Big mama.
Cooking grandmamas. Chicken fryin w/ one hand behind their back, pork chop smotherin, sweet potato peelin, collard green cutting, black eyed pea shuckin, peach preserve makin, sweet potato pie bakin, tea & lemonade sweetnin, no measuring needed and it always tastes sooo good grandmamas. Big mama.
Fighting grandmamas. Southern born or Northern bred, each battling their own war against racism, injustice and discrimination. Marching grandmamas. Not letting arthritis or the sugar or high blood pressure steal her joy. Had to walk 10 miles each way to school just to get a basic education. Keeping their families together at any cost, but understanding when to let a man go and having the resolve to raise a family on their own grandmamas. Becoming parents all over again, as they raise their grandchildren because their own kids have gone astray. Big mama.
Black, brown and high yella grandmamas. Black don’t crack grandmamas. Dispensing wisdom cloaked in Southern colloquialisms and lesson teaching metaphors: somethin’ in that milk ain’t clean, just cause you put kittens in the oven don’t make ‘em biscuits, just cause you got money don’t mean you got sense… Quilt sewers. Ass whuppers. Tear wipers. Soothers. Life savers. History makers. The keeper of our deepest values, our stories, our traditions, our people. More than words could ever describe. My grandmama. Your grandmama.
What have you learned from your grandmama? Think about it and cherish those memories. Or you can share them here! Do you think yo' grandmama makes the best peach cobblers this side of the Mississippi? Do you have an infamous beatin story to tell? Is there a piece of advice that you learned from her that you live by? Talk about it! It’s the end of an era y’all…
That’s my time y’all! Happy Rum Punch Friday!
Thursday, November 22, 2007
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
In this day and age in where media is pressin' for the exclusive, it was refreshing to know the interview did not go on as planned. It would be nice if media could focus on Dr. West life and celebrate it, but I'm not holding my breath.
It was a lil' sickening to see Larry counteroffer Dr. Adams' refusal to discuss matters by engaging him and his lawyer to reconsider coming on Thanksgiving eve. Come on Larry! He kept informing his audience that he'll forgo his vacation for the interview. Grrrrr. . . . stop it.
Well, I want you guys to be safe and be thankful for what you got and not get caught up in the shopping frenzy. Enjoy your time with family and friends and understand that you can't take things for chance.
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
But this isn’t about how I feel about the music that’s being played on corporate radio playlists. This is about me trying to understand the Hood. And not in the Dr. Bill Cosby-I’m going to beat you over the head Black people with my dogma and love-way. But in the how did a place of extreme lack invent a mentality that is both coveted and celebrated.
Historically Black folks have always been able to make the best of a bad situation (cue Ms. Gladys and the Pips) . Just give us a twig, a bucket with a hole in it and some dirt and we are going to figure out a way to make a house. Oh, how Masta probably thought it was funny to just give us the left over parts of the pig while he dined on cured ham. But didn’t we invent a way to make those feet, snouts and intestines tasty? Ha! Our resourcefulness in need has served us and this country well.
But maybe we are getting to a point where we need to stop making up some of this s--t!
My mom, a property manager in public housing, told me that a fairly new neighborhood grocery store has decided to close. This store serves a lot of people living under the poverty line and its closure would result in people who rely heavily on public transportation to travel nearly 15 miles to purchase food. Now this is in the Tidewater, VA area folks, not at all like the DC metro…sure they’ve got buses but those aren’t going to take you everywhere you need or want to go. But the reason that this store is shutting down is so ridiculous and so upsetting. The store (and I don’t want to say “of course”-but of course) has experienced high volumes of theft. Shoplifting included bags of steamed shrimp. Someone thought up a way to eat bags and bags of shrimp without having to pay…and of course they told their friends about it. Folks had figured-order a bag of shrimp and then go into the bathroom to peel and eat! Dinning in a stall? Leaving the shells on the bathroom floor. WTF? Who thought up that?! And why? Just to get over?
I just don’t understand it ya’ll. I would have never thought of that. And sometimes I want shrimp and can’t afford to get it. So I’ve been there. I understand the “struggle”. But because of this Hood mentality many people are going to be disserved. There is now an even greater need in an already struggling community. And I hate that we have to keep coming up with stuff to make living with lack bearable. We should be curing the causes of our needs, not putting a band-aid over it. No one should have to figure out a way to get groceries from the other side of town, there should be a convenient place nearby-period! But I’m sure someone is going to come up with something…we always do.
See You In Seven
Monday, November 19, 2007
My first love is music. I begin each day with it and I end each night with it. Music is the language of my heart and I could not imagine life without it. Every person has a soundtrack to their life. Songs that signify a special person, a unique place, a family gathering, or even a broken heart. Today, I am having a hard time putting words together. I am finding difficulty in synching my tongue [and fingers] with the body and soul. Therfore I am sharing with you the current melody that my heart beats.
I hope you enjoy.
Dark & Stormy