Sunday, January 29, 2006

A Canvas For Quotes

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I'm living my life via quotes these days... Seems like I say standout words or phrases that stick around long enough to make me pick up the journal and write it down. I got to thinking it would be cool to document my quotin' progress, if you will... There's a memory of a significant moment attached; good, bad, whatever- yo, this week it went a little something like this...

"Is this a joke, a test or the best I can do?"
In the midst of someone teling me their plans to return to another, I received a call from a former somebody speaking of dreams of marriage.. In my mind it aint nothing but a mirage...

"And if you love it, spread the word..."
I was blessed to talk about my upcoming book with someone who was intrigued with the storyline and some of the words spoken by the female lead character in the story.

"Don't just say it 'cause it sounds good. Say it 'cause you mean it."
An effort to show a good friend just how blessed he is to have a special lady in his life who has chosen to make him her priority. He was trying to come up with the "right" words to say how he feels.

"Tonight she was there. She smiled, she waved... I seen what love almost looked like."
Answer to a question from a friend who asked why I looked so out of it; so dizzy... My eyes slightly red because I fought back and held in something I didn't want to admit...

Monday, January 23, 2006

One of the best damn artists...

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This lady is the bomb and should not be slept on! Peep out her new CD comin' soon called Tennessee Slim Is The Bomb...

"You oughta know by now that I just wanna fly to the moon / And even if you won't take me, I know there'll be another rocket comin' by soon."


Sunday, January 15, 2006

Quotin' Time

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"The person least interested in the relationship will dominate it. And the person who wants the relationship will always sacrifice.."

-Terrence Howard

Saturday, January 14, 2006

The Lonely Home

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I spent a couple hours visiting with a woman on Green Street; a little road in east Texas. It sits deep in the country, surrounded by towns such as Cason, Mt. Pleasant, Omaha, and Daingerfield. A lot of folks with the same last name as mine live on this road that you basically have to pull over to the side in order to let someone coming from the opposite direction go by.

Calsa was the woman's first name and when I met her, she'd seen a lot of years. Her home was warm inside. She had a lot of pictures on the walls and on tables in frames. Underneath her coffee table were stacks of photo albums. I wanted to look through them but I felt like I'd be intruding if I attempted to do so after only just recently meeting her.

Calsa spoke a lot about my grandfather and the kind of man he was. She said she could see a lot of me in him. Tears filled her eyes as she recalled the past and then she looked out the window. She pointed to an empty field sitting on the opposite side of Green Street. She told me that her grandmother lived there inside a very small home. She was alone for most of her life living there and used to wait days upon days for someone to visit or simply pass by. Calsa said she could relate to how her grandmother lived because her life had become very similar.

"It takes days for somebody to remember old Calsa. I guess times is different now and folks mind only got so much room in it. They only think about whoever they see right in front of them" she said.

I nodded in agreement. "Yes ma'am. Everyone is in a hurry, I guess--"

"And where you suppose they going?"

I couldn't answer Calsa's question. She continued to tell me about her grandmother. I pictured a woman who lived a lonely life without a means of getting around. Maybe she feared leaving her home and getting caught by darkness or being too far from home to get back. Calsa told me that whenever her grandmother did see someone coming up the road she'd wave and greet that person as if they were family.

"Grandma would just wave and wave... She'd smile and if the person stopped in front of her home, she'd offer them something to eat. Total strangers, mind you... I can't do that 'cause you never know who you might be inviting into your home but I do takes care of friends and family."

Calsa offered me some pound cake after that. I accepted because her home smelled like she had fresh pound cake sitting on the table somewhere. When she left the room and went into the kitchen, I picked up one of the framed photos sitting on the coffee table. I thought it was a picture of Calsa at first until I looked really closely and saw how somewhat different the facial features were. When Calsa returned she saw me with the picture in my hands. She smiled and said that was her grandmother.

"Okay, I thought it was you at first."

Calsa smiled. "No, that's Grandma. It's the only picture I have of her. I look at it from time to time and it make me think about myself. My life is full but it's mostly carried in memories that I have. Grandma tell me if you live long enough and your mind still good, you gonna have a good time 'cause your memories is what's gonna make you smile. I smile often chile and I pray for when somebody come up the road to visit me just as you has. Then I can share my gift..."

"Your gift?"

"Life is precious and eventhough you might say old Calsa look like she lonely, living in a lonely house, I'm doing just fine. Grandma was the same way. When somebody come around and they get to talking, that time spent becomes a precious memory she can hold onto forever. When I had a chance to visit with her, she tell me about those times back then on this lonely road and it's like I get to see how she lived and meet them folks she talk to. And now chile, through me you living what I been through and meeting those that come before me."

"Yeah, that's what it feels like..."

After a while I could sense Calsa getting tired so I excused myself and told her I would come back another day to visit with her. I did a few more times before I'd heard she passed on. Now her body resides in the family cemetery but her spirit I can see still standing on the porch of her country home on Green Street, waving goodbye. I look forward to visiting again the next time I'm down there cruising through east Texas...

Friday The 13th what!

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I got this idea to blog about my Friday the 13th experience from a fellow blogger who by the way has a bomb spot on the internet that's sure to make you want to visit all the time. Her thoughts and creativity are fabulous... Peep her out sometime..

My day started off pretty lazy but I was motivated by the fact that I needed to finish up some reading I had to do of my novel due out in March. I had to search for typos and other little errors. I can't wait for folks to read this book.. It's got that westcoast street flava with a literary edge to it.. Sure to make you feel like you watching something special unfold on the big screen in a sort of Set It Off kind of way... except of course it's your mind's eye supplying the canvas for these characters to dance on...

Anyway, after I finished that good stuff, I headed off to work... Work went real cool.. Eight hours felt like two because that's just how good my day was flowing... This didn't feel like any kind of bad luck day.. Maybe it's like that because I dont know much about a lot of the so-called superstitions... A black cat walk in my path and I smile. I love how they look so mysterious and walk without a sound attached to their footsteps. I try to emulate that myself. Sometimes I even try to sneak up on them just to see if I can... Sounds silly but it's a challenge...*smile*

After work I was blessed with a real cool walking session, hanging out with A~Dawg and talking about life, book stuff, and staying focused on what we do aka efforts to better our work, careers, and anything else that places money in our paths.. As always it was a beautiful time... The night air was crisp and Beverly Hills was filled with everything from silence to distant party noises...

On my way home I stopped by the mailbox to drop off some bills and then I went to Walgreens to pick up some Arizona Sweet Tea... My friday the 13th wasn't much to the casual observer but for me it was a beautiful experience.. A perfect prologue to a peaceful weekend...

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Monday, January 02, 2006

Part three..

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The rain kept me in today and besides that, I just felt no motivation to go anywhere... Cali folks aren't the best at driving whenever there's precipitation so I didn't want to have my defensive driving skills on full alert when my brain power just wants to just relax and sit on cruise control... 2006 is finally here. I figured I'd add a part three to my year end review series... Checkout part one and two by scrolling down through previous entries...

This year came in quietly.. perhaps its the quiet before the storm.. The storm represented by the onslaught of experiences due to come my way in 2006. I have no idea what's on the horizon though I dream constantly of success, my stories finally being read by others, and warm hugs keeping my journey comfortable like new years eve for which I'm grateful...

Speaking of new years eve... I spent it mostly in reflection and looking forward... I watched documentaries about folks I admire or that fascinate/inspire me.. People like Bruce Lee, Tupac, Robert Johnson, Son House, and slave narratives/stories told by Oprah, Angela Bassett, and others.. Each one of those represent not only life but a passion for truly living... inspiration...

All knowledge ultimately results in self-knowledge...
Bruce Lee...

I shared thoughts with a friend who lives in a distant tropical land... She suggested a new tradition to add to my personal pallette. Soba noodles... She said..It's a traditional japanese noodle dish that is eaten at midnight to represent long life. I ran out to the store and got some for myself, came home and whipped up my own little version of a soba noodles treat using that and some soup ingredients for a rich sauce that I'll have to do some extra reps for during my next workout session.. Next up as far as traditions go I'll have to indulge in the black eye'd peas that my mother has waiting for me to eat... I dont know that any of those things work but good tasting food is always a pleasure and seeing that the reason is a positive one makes it a double pleasure.. Thanks to Jody for the new tradition..

Jody and I continued our conversation via email and we discovered a mutual respect for "Magic," a powerful ingredient between two people that's hard to explain... chemistry... postive vibe... You just know when it's there or when it surrounds you... I've had it once in Seattle and it followed me to this romantic beach house in Hermosa years ago. I've had it in conversation with a woman who loves butterflies and smiles as if a feather were tickling her spine... I was excited that Jody knew what I spoke of and she confirmed it by sharing her wisdom, word for word from her own experience and from her own dreams... Real cool confirmation that my island of beliefs don't just float on thin air but that maybe I'm grasping for something that truly does exist no matter how fairytale like it may seem...

Jody's thoughts: Magic..........yes! That undefinable "umph!" Sexual attraction and all that do not compare when someone can literally touch your soul....That first kiss that hits you way down inside........the smell.....the essence that seems so awakens something in your spirit....your heart......your mind.......the blending of all the senses...... Like that kind of magic? YES!!!

Ha haaa... Jody pretty much caressed the nail on the head though I likened this magic more to a shared piece of canvas where two people boundaries...nothing framed and yet all movements follow a certain course that lead to wherever... no pressure... something unexplainable that feels good... Even the ups and downs or disagreements never knock the ride completely off course.. Magic still remains like that I-can't-wait-to-see-you-again-feeling...even if its just a stolen moment... Or another way to put it would be to borrow a quote from someone describing A Raisin In The Sun... “A work of theatrical magic in which the usual barrier between audience and stage disappears.” It's much better to participate in the making of something special than to put up all sorts of barriers that keep growth unbalanced and foundation unstable... confusion sets in..

Another friend of mine told me about something I was never aware of. It's another cool tradition that has existed for a long time and one in which I will make a point to enjoy at the end of this new year with a deeper meaning. Shelia shared an email with me about a tradition called "Freedom's Eve." It's a special gathering that dates back to December 31, 1862. It said in the email "On that night, Blacks came together in churches and private homes all across the nation, anxiously awaiting news that the Emancipation Proclamation actually had become law. Then, at the stroke of midnight, it was January 1, 1863, and all slaves in the Confederate States were declared legally free." It's been 143 years since freedom's eve and hearing about this from Shelia made me think of my living relatives and those that came before me who may have celebrated this tradition in a small church in Daingerfield Texas known as Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist church; a place originally built and started by my great great grandmother, Moriah Rivers. There's some beautiful history in that country town...

2006 is upon us now and I feel another crossroads on the horizon... Hopefully it will bring more growth... In a perfect world it would come without sadness or sacrifice but those ingredients in life are just as important as sugar in a pound cake.. I'm looking forward to it.. I'm not always patient.. I want tomorrow to come yesterday... I wanna already see how this new year will unfold but as I've used these final days of 2005 and the first couple days of 2006 to cleanse my thoughts, it's time to wake up the spirit and do my thang. 2006.... I wonder what will be the new catch phrases... I wonder who will excite the world... I wonder if I'll be blessed with a little bestselling status... that would be nice... All good things are possible... I pray mother nature is a little kinder this year, though she's probably not the one to blame for these serious weather conditions... I'm looking forward to making some trips to the south this year... I hear it calling... But for right now I'm ending this piece with some old school Cali pacific coast highway traveling music playing in the background aka Steely Dan. I'm gonna get my workout on and wish the rain away... Happy New Year...