While waiting for the Train

Sat down hard.

Have young face.

Must be Indian. Very strong Accent.

-Whew! Can you think of another word for clutch?

-Purse?

-No, it’s a four letter word. Purse is five letters.

-Hum, I can’t think of another word.

-How about BBQ?

-How many letters?

-Seven, your favorite number. At least I think so.

Then he follows me onto the train.

Sits beside Me. And continues talking.

-You must be good at Sudoku

-Actually, I don’t play at all.

-Then you must be good at crosswords. You know you learn good vocabulary from crosswords.

-Yeah, I don’tTrainstation play any of those games.

-Why? Well, I guess I’ll be going.

And with that, he hopped of at his stop.

That was really weird. Didn’t his mom tell him not to speak to strangers?


Project Day

Today I had so much fun with my students. They all had projects to do on people – women who inspires them. I guess it is in celebration of Women History Month. Most of them picked singers. They had a half day so I came to the library early to meet them as planned.And they all came early ready to work on their project.

I brought my own supplies from home and helped them each with their project. It was also report card day so not all of them were very happy. A parent even came to make sure her son was really doing his homework. I hope she does that more often. They (the children) have a tendency of being serious only around report card day. Today he was near to tears. He’s reading a book by Louis Lowery  titled Anastasia on her Own. I hope he finishes the entire book.

One student got kicked out of the library for eating. She got caught by the librarian. I guess they are cracking down on the kids. I felt a little sorry for her though. I thought kicking her out for the day was pretty harsh. But they gotta learn. I hope she finishes her project at home. Those who didn’t finish their project at the library went to the Chinese store in the neighborhood to finish up. I must say they never been more excited and determine to finish their homework.

Dancing beat, different Drumer

I saw a documentary on Youtube titled : Beah: A Black Women Speaks last week and tonight I just got in from seeing a show  titled Black Museum. Both? Very uplifting and powerful. Both? Connected with each other and with me in many ways. Both? also made me feel a lesser connection with my people.

You see, black people are so mixed up, inside and out. All talking different doctrines and all marching to different beats. All praising Malcolm and Martin out of the very same mouth. It leaves you feeling, yeah, proud but also a little confused. And I am not even sure Why!? We say we don’t want to be boxed in yet, we keep boxing ourselves in. Trying very hard to create a people, a culture, who can all stand for one thing together. We are most American in these types of situations. But yet, we are not waving around our flag freely or proudly instead we are keeping our American tied and Tied Americanwrapped.

At the end of the show, Black Museum, the actors and actress were all celebrating the beat that they found- I guess in America- and started stomping it out; you know doing the sorority step thingy. It was entertaining, yeah. But after I thought about it. I felt they all should have been stomping differently instead of in unison to celebrate the diversity of black folk. There is no way, a people who been through that much will come out being the same.

Nevertheless, In all the acting tonight I saw Beah. And all the older generation of black actors and actress who went on before us. I saw Cosby and Poitier. I even saw Denzel. (If I said Washington, you would have no idea I was talking about Denzel). I saw their struggle and their fight to get on stage and give my people a form of entertainment we would enjoy. I also saw them teaching the younger generation how to act and accept themselves.

In addition, I heard Beah saying words are powerful and stressing the VOICE. I; therefore, tried to listen to each voice and each word that was delivered. And what I took away from them is this we are ‘dancing to the rhythm of [our] own definition’.

Dress by Ivy H.

Ivy H

There is something about this era. While it is not easy to get a job or buy a home like it was during the 50’s, this era is very youthful. We may have to spend more time in our parents home or be dependable on the older generation before us but we are learning.  In these hard times the older generation is  making us wait our turn. Showing us the ropes and trying to make sure we will be equipped with knowledge and wisdom to do the job.

I am in no way pushing older folks out. I love old people but I love my young people too. I just think that there are some young people out there who are doing great jobs.

For example, the president is very young. Whether or not you think he is doing a good job is another story, but to be so young in the white house is a good thing.  In addition, While in some cases it is hard to get a foot in the ‘door’, there are many programs geared toward young people. Some of my friends are a part Teach for America. I also read about Teach for the World, a program put together by New York Times Editor, Nicholas D. Kristof. Many young kids are going to different countries as the ‘helpful American’. I also notice many young and up coming clothing designers. Which I am very impressed with. There is Christian Siriano, who I met at Borders. I did not even know him until his book Fierce Style came out. I have been reading Vogue and other fashion articles about many other young people who are doing their thing. I have met Ivy Higa. Another fashion designer who make high-end clothes. She is very young and I believe her line is amazing. To see them do what they love and be so young is encouragement. Age can not and will not stop me from success.

School Matters

School MattersIn a country where education is highly valued and nearly everyone attends public schools, this private system benefits primarily members of the upper class and provides one of the foundations for the old- boy and old- girl networks that will be with them throughout their lives.

G. William Domhoff

Since I have been volunteering at the library, I have notice myself in some of the children situations, I saw my friends from grade school acted out again by the children I teach, I see the same tricks and hear the same insults and promises  that children give to one another. It seems my childhood is flashed before my face at times. Today I felt as if I was in sociology class. Only thing, it was real life.

Hi Miss Lilly!

Hi, Children. How was school?

I said to no one in particular. All the children seem to be in groups. I didn’t know who to go to first. The children sitting to the far left made eye contact and were smiling shyly at me. They were in uniform with their books still in their backpacks. They were doing what we all do, sneakily eating candy.

Hi.

Hi, Miss Lilly!

Miss Lilly, I don’t think I know you. Do I?

No, hun. I don’t think I ever saw you before.

After meeting my students friend. I talked to them about starting their homework.

You all already did your homework?

No.

Then-

Miss Lilly, how come you looked mad when you first came over here?

I am not mad. I was just watching you. Watching this here bare table without any books.

Okay, we gonna do our homework!

Indeed I was watching them. I was watching all the children in the library. I notice a huge separation between the students who attends public school and those who attended private school. Granted that they all go to different schools, both schools are not to far away from each other and most of the students are neighbors who know each other; yet, they barely talk to one another.  They often sit at different tables and ignore each other. Even though I try to get the children to interact with each other when doing their homework, it is hard for those from the private schools to be kind to those from the public schools and vice versa. They are all in the same grade for the most part and some may understand the material more than others but no one wants to be humble. As if to make my observations more vivid a known bully from the public school walked up to me while I was talking to the private school children.

Hey. Hey. He said tapping me. They were bothering us. Saying things.

Well, what did  – I couldn’t even finish my sentence

That’s because you started first!

Yeah, Miss Lilly. He started first!

Well, –

No! I didn’t! He ran away smiling and screaming. Shut up! He continued. Calling them names.

That’s why my school has better standards than your school! Said a student from the private school table.

The little bully didn’t answer. I am not sure if he even heard him. He was already at the public school children table looking over a kid shoulder at a DSI also sneaking food.

I walked over to the middle table in between both tables which consisted of children ignoring both their public school friends and their private school frienemies. They were a handful of girls trying to finish up their homework.

Hi Miss Lilly. I have lots of homework today.

Well, I notice. Let’s Read.

The Tempter

I believe in Christ. I know that He is real. I am a worshiper. I say ‘amen’ and ‘preach it, preacher!’ in church. I sit in the front. Yet, it seems I need my faith to be refreshed. It seems I’ve come to the end of my faith.

So, I am sitting in a public place. And, it seems I find life somewhere else. I meet someone new. I am all of sudden in a different world. Yet, that little faith that I still have is telling me – commanding me- not to forget my first love.

I come back. I still believe in Christ. I ask him to make me stronger. I feel I went away. Didn’t go to far, but far enough. I know that He is real. I am a worshiper.  I say ‘come on Singer, sing it’ and ‘minister to me!’ in church. I sit in the middle. Yet, it seems I need my faith to be refreshed. Its seems I’ve come to the end of my faith.

So, I am sitting in a public place, And, it seems I’ve strayed. I know where I am. God has grace and mercy right? It seems I am hurting. But He knows I have no need to feel that way. Which life do you want? Choose.I choose.  I take a chance. This life seems to be shaky. Maybe I should talk to someone. Tell them I’ve come to the end of my faith.

I come back. I am sitting in church. I still believe in Christ. I ask him to make me stronger. I pray. I put my trust in Jesus. And He loves me so much he doesn’t leave me. He talks with me. He walks with me. But now I sit at the back. Maybe its my shame.

I tell myself don’t go. Don’t go again to that pubic place. Yet, I find myself walking there. That’s what temptation is for isn’t it? To overcome. But I know overcoming means resiting. Yet, I continue walking.  I begin to pray. Walk and pray.

Walk and Pray. Walk and Pray. Walk and Pray. Walk and Pray. Walk and Pray. Walk and Pray.

Jesus warns me that the next temptation will be stronger.You have to leave and be strong to never go back.Walk and Pray

Build up now because there is only one tempter and it’s not God.

Sunset in the Hood

I just finished reading from The New York Times. I read Bob Herbert’s editorial titled The Source of Obama’s Trouble. I am not that much of a politician. Actually, it really doesn’t interest me at all. But as a citizen and a true American its my duty to be in the know  about what’s going on in the government. (I’ll tell you what provoke me later).

Anyways, after reading the article I think the article speaks volumes to me and my situation. Me not really caring what President Obama has to say about the Health Care system in America. What I need for the most part is a job. Money. Then I can care. But maybe what is going is will help me get a job?

I haven’t really paid attention to the Health Care speeches. I am in good health. It’s my pocket that is failing.

Herbert states that while the nation is desperate for jobs, jobs, jobs the Democrats have spent most of the Obama era chanting health care, health care, health care. He continues to say that ‘people are upset because they are mired in economic distress and are losing faith that their elected representatives are looking out for their best interests.’

I am not a person to put my faith in man in the first place-  which is not a good excuse to explain why I don’t really pay attention to the government –Sun going down in the Hoodbut a steady job would be nice.

However, on the other hand, I am content with life. I like my work that I do now. I am interested to see how the Health Care package turn out and see how well Obama does for those who have serious health problems.

I have a feeling time is running out for us to not really care what those at the ‘top’ are doing. I know it time to care. Whether I want to care or not. It is more a responsiblity.