Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Not really sure about what the moral of this entry is...
I was equally not really sure about what to title this blog entry, so I left it to simply Old.

Three stories in chronological order, by three different people. My story is called Mami. Each of them told from the perspective of a person from the hood with different degrees of "a past" in said hood. We have all moved on to a better life; mind, body, and soul. Oh! And we're all Old.

Good Samaritan - 1999 (??)

It was late at night (late late) and on a recent visit home to Bed-Stuy Brooklyn, 30ish year old K figured she'd do a walk/run home to her Mom's house. At the tail end of her work-out she spots a small group of young girls walking as well. In her mind, she figured these young innocents were in a hurry to get home and so naturally K's maternal instinct kicked in. She decided to start walking next to them keeping pace with their strides so that they would feel safer (seriously people). Oblivious to their stares (and rude observations about the @#$!%* following them), she stayed true to her mission until she saw the glimmer of a bottle whose trajectory was coincidentally pointed in her direction. Fortunately for her it missed, and she came to her senses. So she left her post as Guardian and considered ending her walk/run with a run for one more block. But just before she was about to come out of the blocks, she realized that those same girls would chase her down (like a pack typically would after it's prey) and decided that a nice late night stroll to her Mom's house was a better idea...

O.G. (2009)

Walking home late from a party, Dap was spotted by some young thugs with nuthin better to do. Without getting into details, it is no exaggeration and accurate to state that Dap was a seriously bad mofo back in the day...(nuff said). So needless to say, he knew these dudes were about to start some shit. He heard one say to his dude "Yo!.. hole up man. That dude is an O.G.!!!" Another replies "So!" They all proceed to chase Dap's ass for a number of blocks. I can't remember if they caught up to him and whether he had to duke it out or not.

Mami (Aug 30, 2009)

So this happened to me this weekend...
My friend Joe had his 33rd bday bash at Pop Burger in the Meat Packing District this year. Good times were had by all. Just before leaving, I went down to use the ladies room and I use this term 'ladies" lightly. It was the typical scene downstairs in the restroom hallway area; but seedier and grimier then I expected. No biggie. Been there; done that. As I proceed to push open the door to the ladies room, I felt some resistance on the other side and then this young Latino dude sticks his head out. Of course I'm like "Wassup with this?" Mainly because I have a habit of entering men's bathrooms by accident (heh heh) and also because he was hesitating letting me in.
When he finally allows me in, I see there's another young guy and girl in there. The new guy is having a fit about my comment and his friends are trying to calm him down...meanwhile explaining to me that they're gay and it's ok, I can use the bathroom...I'm nonplussed and bored. All I wanna do is get in and get out. As I walk further in, I notice another young girl sitting on the floor in one of the stalls; head in the bowl barfing her brains out. So I innocently state that I don't care what they are and I can plainly see that they're helping their friend while she barfs her brains out.
Well that sets off both new guy and barfin girl...they're verbally slammin me (him while primping in the mirror and her while she continues to barf) as the other two tell them to stop yelling at me. Remarkably, I'm still cool but I can feel the adrenaline creeping up my neck and as I make my way (finally) into the next stall, I start making preparations to come out swingin' if I had to. So I powder my nose (love that term), and step out of the stall ready for my scene from Warriors to begin...I get total silence; not a peep. New guy is all of a sudden demure and moves from his post at the sink and mirror and gives me space to wash my hands and even turns on the hand dryer for me. I'm at a lost for words...temporarily.
Most sensible people would have walked out and given thanks to whatever God they worship. And while I am "mostly sensible", this night I pushed the envelope and while drying my hands, I began to lecture new guy. What I said didn't matter. What did matter, however was his reaction. Total respect with a bit of "Yes Mami" here and "Yes Mami" there for good measure. The others were completely silent and as I exited, I could still feel the adrenaline in my heart, ears and throat and it stayed there pumping all of the way out of Pop Burger, across 14th St, and down into the A train station.

That's right I still take the subway late at night. Cuz I'm a New Yorker and that's how I roll...