Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Humbled Trash Man

He asked, “How do you do this?” And, I did not have to respond. My youngest son did all the talking for me. Bryce yelled, “Daddy…” from 50ft away. It was one of those beckons that’s really: ‘Where are you? I need you now!’

Of course my parental radar activated. I was at attention - and Bryce was simply confirming that his father was still in sight. Still available to him. I definitely was accessible. Yes, I was in his midst! I was completely covered with sweat and reeking of hot garbage.

I was in the trash shoot room. The “How do you do this?” question from my teenage neighbor was an innocently curious inquiry. He truly wanted to know why I am the Trash Man. He wanted to know what has changed in my life. He wanted to know why I was not in a fancy building with pretentious coworkers barely working in a small cubicle. Likewise, he wanted to know how I could stand in a room that’s insulated with a hideous odor, infested with soiled diapers, full of decaying food, tenacious horse flies, fleshy maggots, and unrelenting mosquitoes.

Yeah...that was the teenager’s real question. Thankfully, I did not respond verbally. I try my best not to intake the curry aromas of Indian garbage so talking is prohibited. The identical whiffs of road kill and all the other bags of pig slop for some reason triggers Earl. Vomiting can be a recurring Before Lunch experience if I breathe via nostrils. The smell is putrid!

With a quick glance up and over to the right - and with a finger point I answered the teen’s question. My paternal attention was on my brawny two year old and my index finger aiming was the polite indication to the teenager why my employment has uncharacteristically evolved and become one of many respectable

Of late, I have also cleaned roach and bed bug infested apartments.

Unemployment has been remarkably kind to me. I have been humbled again. Nothing wrong with that…Humility needs recurrent characters.

The Reality:

If I don't detach the dumpster, pick-up after lackadaisical humans, and push the heavy dumpsters to the picturesque cul-de-sac the rubbish will not be dumped, and Bryce Emani and Judah Mordecai WILL NOT:

Hopefully, Ricardo (the teenager) has gained a valuable lesson from our brief encounter. He more than likely did…he is a GOOD kid who wants to work – and not sell

I have definitely learned from this edifying time of unemployment – and as I am relearning I have been reminded of a day when I worked for Marc Goodman, my Thomasville barber. One hot July morning, Marc asked me to go clean his barber shop parking lot. It was littered with Newport cigarette butts, a few Billy D. Williams promoted liquor bottles, and Sir Pizza to-go cups. With offensive disdain I rejected. I became insubordinate. Goodman calmly explained, “Brian, you have to reverence all jobs. Give them value. You work for me, remember? Now, help me maintain a clean and reputable shop for our customers.” Marc Goodman was one of many Teachers with lesson plans for young black men like me. He and other willing black role models like Richard Flippin mentored when mentoring was not defined.

Flip’s and Marc’s lessons are cemented in my unshakable belief: No man is above any job. If he believes that he is – he is duping himself and unlike numerous Mexicans missing out on an honest living.

No one is safe in the United States government’s instigated 9.2% unemployment rate. No one! Not even a country boy who earned an undergraduate degree from one of the best private universities in North America, acquired an advanced degree from the best HBCU ever formed, completed courses for a doctorate in Theology, and who has extraordinary –for a black man- work experience that expands from Eastern Europe to the Eastern Caribbean - and back to the collapsing Superpower that’s owned by China, governed by a Republican congress and led by a powerless black commander and chief who’s presidency has a striking resemblance to his predecessor’s administration:

Despite all the overpriced academic regurgitation e.g. letters behind my name. Despite my dubiously regretful humanitarian service and underappreciated sacrifice to America…

I Be Da Trash Man with impeccable honor and strengthen humility.

Muata Nowe

Sunday, July 03, 2011

My Sleep…Explained

 Gentle Passage

My passage has been gentle, not a blessing. Thomasville Made Me. That is my blessing! God has granted me -as a mortal- a life that I have been responsible Woe is Me  Dependence on God and definitely no powerless devil has altered my passage, My life. I have lived as I wanted - and when there was a joy from my life I owned it. When there was a negative consequence from living in and through this passage I have owned that outcome too. I have been the master of my fate. Good or Bad. Gentle, is what I have tried to be even when I was inflamed with deep seated rage. Gentle, is what I have been when God knocked: Gentle avoidance better known as Hiding like Adam after he was discovered in guilt and gentle head over heels. My passage has finally found what is worthy: Love…sprinkled with Gentleness and Truth. 

Imagined Frontiers

I have used my mind to lead me to bliss. To euphoria. The frontiers of my perception are settled. It is the last step toward my final destination, Death. The steps have been Ordered. I want to defy my natural and terminal demise by succumbing to Freedom. Ultimately, my aspiration is to cheat death by becoming free. Then I will never die. Leaving me right at the border. Right on the boundary line. Right in my mind-created Frontier...I am here waiting on the next divine instruction. Patiently, waiting to be pushed. I will follow The Revolutionaries to Uncertainty. Not one of us knows The Ending to this experiment that we should entitle, Existence.

Thoughts Removed from Time

Our thinking should be limitless. It should be unending and difficult to obstruct. Nothing or anyone should hamper our thoughts unless we are guilty of highjacking time to suit our selfish desires. Thought Removed is expiry's brother. A brother with no core. 'Where is your soul?' She asked. I answered with boldness, "Here it is. It has not been detached." What was eventually lost…? Time - not my thoughts. I am still discerning without boundary…seeking a way to Rebel. 

Returned Awaken

On this 41st birthday, I am Awake. I have returned from my forced closure. From my Self-induced termination. I have been living as instructed…Abundantly and without Man’s Approval. My Passage has been with meaning. And my Frontier -as it was imaged -is what I thought it would be: Without Time...leaving me with my thoughts. Once again -in a new year- I am Awaken...I know because I have been here: SLEEP - before. Lord, please keep me Awake.

-Muata Nowe is Living on…Join me by appreciating the one gift that I have cherished since the day I received it. 

Warning: If you are not ready to Sleep please do not listen.

Thanks to Ronald B. Wilkins I Sleep No Longer

Muata Nowe