i had a dream that i was sitting with my uncle, at his dining room table. for whatever reason, i was trying to explain to him why i had no plans to pursue a relationship with my father or my brothers. i was going on this rant. i don’t remember it in its entirety but i recall saying “they never tried. why should i be the bigger man?” a few times. i felt i was being defensive. or bitter. but my uncle just sat quietly across the table, nodding in agreement as i talked. and when i finished he told me that he was glad that i had even given it some thought and that he fully supported my decision. i remember being surprised by his reaction, as if i’d been holding back from telling him this for a while because i was worried about how he’d respond.
when i woke up this morning, i felt very calm. like a weight had been lifted off of my shoulders. it felt like it all really happened. which is very strange because i havent spoken to my uncle in years and my relationship with my father isn’t something i think about often.
i started watching goldfinger earlier. james bond dismisses a woman from a conversation due to it being “man talk” and mushes another woman in the face for playfully flirting with him while he was on the phone
i think my weed man has really bad memory so i’ve been kinda running this experiment on him where i repeat something he’s told me in the past word for word as if it were my own original thought, just to see what his reaction would be.
he has yet to pick up on the fact that i’m doing this. the last time i did it his eyes got really wide and his jaw dropped a bit and then he placed his hand on his chest and whispered no way dude me too
newspapers are starting to experiment more with using algorithms to write stories. robots can now cover a wide range of data and spin it into an article in no time. the la times was able to be the first to report on an earthquake that happened last week because of an algorithm called quakebot (that even has its own twitter account).
this is looking like a pretty murky career choice, right now.
haven’t gotten around to listening to that new rick ross yet
been too busy listening to random science podcasts.
seriously. i been listening to them so often that it takes up all of the free time that i would normally use listening to new music.
i was listening to one today on radiolab about a chimpanzee named lucy who some white people tried to raise as a human being. shit was crazy. they had her making tea and masterbating to playgirl magazine and all types of weird shit. and then as soon as she got too big for them to handle…they shipped her ass back to africa. into the wild with other chimps. they went back to check on her 2 years later and she was dead. killed by poachers. said since she was raised by humans, she probably thought the poachers were friendly and walked right up to them. pretty sad.
if a zombie apocalypse were to happen and destroy the earth, people of the future would see that we made so many movies/books/tv shows about it without being able to prevent it and we are all going to look silly.
blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly iv
a couple months go by and my brother and i are back in school.
we went to a somewhat…alternative school. it was a private christian college preparatory elementary school. and it was in a mall.
the school had recently moved from the building it was in to Southtown mall, a shopping mall on the decline after the closing of several stores including JC Penny and LS Ayers.
Southtown was still a somewhat functioning shopping mall. there was a Foot Locker and a Sears. there was an arcade. a food court (Sbarro, Subway etc). a few locally owned businesses. but compared to the other mall in our city, there was a lot less foot traffic at Southtown and you could just tell that it wouldn’t be long before the other businesses started closing its door permanently. my school’s plan was to expand as this happened until they owned the entire mall. i guess they were looking to become some sort of powerhouse private elementary school.
i spent the beginning of 5th grade in a mall-style Walgreens that was somehow converted into an elementary school. it was a strange experience. the classrooms were set up so that the students faced this window (with the teacher’s back to the window) that led out into the mall. the idea behind this was to allow the people walking through the mall to kinda see our classrooms from the point of view of the teacher. it was somewhat of a revolutionary idea, in theory, but i dont think a shopping mall was the best place to experiment with it.
it didnt seem to be much of a problem for my classmates, but i found the window to be very distracting. i couldn’t help but stare at all of the people that passed by. my classroom was perfect for people-watching. there were so many different characters. there was a group of older women who gathered at the mall early to walk around for exercise and they would slow down to watch us and wave every morning. there was the occasional old white man who didn’t seem curious about our learning process but just came to glare. and scoff. one time, there was a homeless guy who watched us through the window (i mean, do you see how this sounds? why did they think this was a good idea?). one of my classmates stuck her tongue out at the man, and he became agitated and punched the glass. scared the shit out of all of us. he was later detained by mall security but still c’mon.
one day, i was in class listening to our teacher talk about some native american related field trip that she had planned for us in the future. and while she was talking, i noticed someone standing behind her from the other side of the glass.
a tall figure.
i couldn’t quite see what the person looked like because my teacher was blocking my view, so i leaned to the side as far as i could (because i was a really nosy/paranoid kid and i was really obvious about it)
and there, behind my teacher, on the other side of the glass, stood Kirk.
the man who was fired from his job because of an altercation he had with me over the summer was now staring into my 5th grade classroom
barack obama didn’t turn out to be the president i had hoped for. he’s not really “for the people”. he isn’t leading any revolutions against the discrimination of people of color. mass incarceration still a problem. stand your ground. stop and frisk. i mean, he’s no martin.
but barack obama is so fucking cool, man.
he’s charming. and funny. and he has a beautiful family. and he just seems like an all around good guy.
and he’s black.
so it’s like…fuck…i mean, you can’t hate the man. he’s the coolest president of all time.
blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly ii
i was 9 at the time, so my little brother had to be 4 or 5. he was a pretty chill kid but he had his days where he was just a complete pain in the ass (like most children). i think this was one of those days. apparently, he had gotten in trouble two separate times earlier that day so his outburst was his 3rd strike. Kirk was fed up.
Kirk walked over to my brother, who was sitting at the front of the group (and i at the back), and snatched him out of his seat. Kirk then grabbed my brother by his left wrist and raised him off of his feet. he then looked at all of us and said “well since Kamen (my brother) wants to be a class clown, lets all laugh at him.”
and the class laughed and pointed at my brother, as he dangled in the air from his wrist by the grip of this tall man. Kamen just squirmed around trying to break free, and when he became tired from squirming he began to cry. he put his right hand over his face to hide his tears.
when the altercation started, i sat in the back of the class horrified. i saw Kirk as an authority figure and i’ve always been one to respect my elders so at first i wasn’t sure if i should speak up in the defense of my brother or not. i could tell that Kirk was crossing a line but i wasn’t sure how i should react.
when my brother started crying, i lost it. i charged toward the front of the room screaming “THAT’S MY BROTHERRRR!!!” and with all of the might in my 9 year old body, i stomped on the front of Kirk’s shoe. he winced in pain and i grabbed my brother out of his hand and ran towards a set of stairs that lead to the pastor’s office.
at this point, i’m crying. my brother is crying. the room is silent. Kirk is walking towards us, trying to get us away from the stairs. i’m freaking out, thinking Kirk is trying to hurt us because i stomped on his foot. in a panic, i took my shoes off and started hurling them at Kirk. i hit him twice, but it doesn’t stop him from walking toward us. so…i ripped the shoes off of my brother’s feet too and before i hurl the first one Kirk says “Fine! Just go!” and points up the stairs.
i grabbed my brother by the hand and dragged him up the stairs and into the pastor’s office. i didn’t knock, i just burst through the door. the pastor was sitting at his desk. startled, he asked me “what’s going on?”
my brother and i stood there, completely disheveled and crying, as i tried to explain to the pastor what happened. he sat us on the couch in his office and tried to calm us down.
he called our mother, and within the hour she too was in the office. i remember her giving us a hug and then telling us to stand in the hallway while she had a talk with the pastor. i could hear my mother raising her voice at the pastor through the door but i couldn’t make out the words. after a short conversation, she came out of the office and took us home.