Thursday, August 05, 2010
The Day in Black
I entered a building the other day that typically systematically attracts black men (was not a court house). I enthusiastically said, "Hello" to everyone seated in the waiting area.
There were two beaten down looking black men, one mad looking black woman (so typical), and one southern Georgia looking white woman. She may have had Peach snuff in her mouth. http://www.bnbtobacco.com/imggrab.aspx?pub=y&ID=400030. I had to go get that for Grandma Frankie once a month.
All had that puzzled expression, 'Why is this sweat covered black man so happy and why is he greeting us like he knows us?' The brothas spoke. I knew that they would. The black female with huge biceps and an afro did not acknowledge my presence. She pretended to be engrossed in a make-shift self help book, http://bibleplanner.com/images/bible_for_sale.jpg.
The 65-70 year old white lady (in a non-battery powered wheel chair) said, "There's another one. You look like a ball player. Big and tall. So big. You play ball."
Since she was white, elderly, and displaying trailer park intelligence I did not curse her out. Actually, a profane tongue lashing directed at a pale-face woman will get you locked-up down here in the bible belt. Furthermore, any wanted and/or unwanted activity displayed towards a white female can get a brotha lynched down here in the illusionary Mecca, Atlanta – which is similar to Mississippi without sophistication.
Remember Emmett Till?
The Day in Black continued
Was on a cardio power walk later in the day. Noticed an inter-racial couple approaching me. As we got closer, I noticed that the former meth-head looking woman was beginning to look terrified. Her body was becoming stiff. Her steps got shorter. And, she was about to squeeze her high-yella companion’s arm off. No lie! I saw fingernail marks in the young man's frail biceps. When we finally got shoulder to shoulder I wanted to say, 'BOO'. I did not because she was very pregnant. Every bit of eight months. That 'BOO' may have broken her water – and I would have had to help deliver the mongrel baby.
The Day in Black outside of the United States
When I traveled to non-black countries around the world as a Peace Corps staffer kids, men, and women randomly ran up to me. Followed me in villages like I was a good luck charm. They peeked in my window at night. Waited outside my door for me to get up at 5:00AM (and these American pre-teens and teens sleep until noon during the summer). They rubbed my skin wanting it to come off. They asked, “Are you Michael Jordan? Do you know Michael Jackson?” Men had me posing with them for pictures. Men even trusted my black self with holding their babies. As late as 2005, in one former USSR controlled country there is a huge picture of me above a family's soap opera programmed television holding a baby. Similar to this picture – but not gender exact:
Being a Black Man has been quite a ride. I am going to get me a white chick to take the final ride with me:
The Day in Black