Thursday, April 21, 2011

Yesterday I purchased my ticket

Something I've learned about myself. I hesitate often on major decisions. Since receiving word that my project would be funded, I danced in my living room, I've worn a smile for a month, I've experience chest pains from anxiety, I've attempted to take a Spanish language class and forgotten everything I needed to brush up on, I've accepted the fact that I was chicken shit scared of this journey. For a solid year, I was deep in this project and never once thought it would become something. And now, well, I'm still processing. The major step was the purchase of a plane ticket and four o'clock this morning, I awoke, heart beating rapidly, announcing yet again to myself, I am going to do research for a project of my own creation. This will not be like the gigs I've done as a musician and vocalist on someone else's project. This will be me. This will be my work. I wonder if I will bring my drum. It would be nice to hear how it sounds nearer the equator than my home.

Tito and how I came to make my drum

I am testing right now. Back in December, I spent some time in New Mexico and Colorado. A good friend got a ticket for me to come visit him. I needed to get out of town. I'm beginning to understand the importance of departure. From New Mexico, we drove to Colorado to participate in ceremony. Tito is one of the lovely boys I was blessed with meeting. This is his version of "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star". Some months after, I made my first drum from the materials gifted to me on New Year's day.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Willie Ninja Supreme

After a long time illness, Willie Ninja has passed. Most of the information given to me during his illness was through Emanuel Xavier, a long time
confidant and fellow writer. They had become close due to the Ball scene and because Willie was one of the first to support Emanuel's Glam Slam, a combination of spoken word and the gay Ball competitions.

I knew Willie for many many years. Decades now through my family, the House of Diva and it's mother Devon who now goes by Pagan. Willie whom I can't seem to speak of in the past, was amazing. Here was this tall, chiseled god of man wo was as limber as anything I knew. And mind you, I'm not referencing Paris is Burning. It's what I saw every week at some club it the World, Tracks, the Tunnel, Save the Robots, or Choice.

If he was there, I was compelled to watch.

I gotta admit, I was a total Fag Hag. Part of me still is. I loved these men. They taught me how to be more woman than anyone before 12th grade.
Paris, another beautiful one, plucked my eyebrows for my highschool prom, permed my hair and made certain my makeup was perfect.

Now there other voguers doing thier thing back then and wow, how I remember them all for the talent they exhibited

Princess, Jerome, Ceasar, some of the kids from the House of Xtravganza. Some has passed. Adrian I would to see at the gym every now and then. Everyone had it going. Still they all bowed to Willie. Willie had not only the talent, he had the dream to go beyond the dance floor, the ballroom. Some were able to make that path too. Some I have no idea.

I just know we lost an incredible man. Me and Emanuel were just talking about him, how he tried to french kiss me at some Ball years ago and how I was sending him a big fat french kiss from Oakland. And then, within minutes, Emanuel got the call...

Willie had exited the building for one last, historical time.

Here's a little bio I found on the web. there's not a lot on the web right now about him. Rest to sure that it will change in the coming days:

"Willie Ninja had been a trend setter with his
incredible dance interpretations including Vogue where
he was featured in the first vogue video by Malcolm
Mclauren (pre Madonna) and helped introduce to the
world the underground dance culture in the hit cult
film "Paris Is Burning". He had also taught some of
fashion's elite to sashay down the runway. From Iman
to Christy Turlington, Naomi Campbell to Betty Lago to
name a few. He had recently added his unique flavor to
television shows such as Extreme Make Over, I Want To
Be A Hilton, Jimmy Kimmel Live! He had toured the
world (also with The UN to Japan) performing his hit
record "I'm Hot For You" produced by Louie Vega. He
had worked for designers Patricia Field, Thierry
Mugler & Marithe & Francios Girbaud to name a few."

He was 45 years old.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

postcard from oakland

I can't write down everything between my last post and now. a lot of
thinking and lack of desire to write things. dreams have been really
important in so much that i'm waiting for someone to visit me. Which
she has but I'm caught with denial of what she's saying in the dreams.
i want her words to be good ones.But instead they are sad, they make
me wake up and shake my head. i don't want to hear "those" words.
i want the ones in my day dreams.

i have to be honest with myself. i worried more about her beyond the
suffering. i want her to be free of pain. i guess the thing i have to set
across in my head is that she is.

i arrived on the 26th around 1 in the morning. Hill picked me up and my
bags weighed a good ton for those with bad backs. both me and Hill got
that. a day and a half at her home with two cats and two adorable kids the
floor below us, we last saw each other when I went to my new address.
the environment jolted me for a moment after she left. i still haven't fully
felt in balance. but at least i got a call from Puerto Rico telling me that
I got a scholarship to pay for either my tuition or my books. that indeed
was a great welcoming gift to my one long room with high ceilings and
one deep closet...along with being beside the smoking lounge...hopefully
i'll have another just like this or better in the coming weeks.

life is funny, you apply for "black" scholarships. you get no love
you apply for "professional women" scholarships. no love
you apply for "i'm poor as shit" scholarships. nada

but the one all the way in Puerto Rico. The one that doesn't ask you to
write a statement about why you need this money.

they show the love. things never really do change.

i have heard folks talk to great lengths about thier love for San Fran. I have more days to explore it. However, i feel incline to say that i have enjoyed Oakland far better than my first day coming out onto Mission and 16th.

on the search for an ethernet cable I was befriended by a woman who called her pastor to asist me and later gave me ride to Emerville. I then got a lot of kind advice from the bus driver. Actually i've recieved a lot of sound advice from the bus drivers out in Oakland. I then befriended another woman on the bus the following day who offered to drive me to Whole Foods should I need to avoid Safeway.

i can't say that i got that on that very first day in San Fran. I got the "I can't help you, I gotta go", the "oh you're way far, you gotta go the opposite (which mind you was wrong)...i can't help you, I'm behind schedule.",

all buses and cable car maps have to be purchased in San Fran because the stations don't offer them.

there was one Chicano brother who did help and i thank him for that. otherwise, me and two Scotish girls straight from Scotland would have been in a shit load of trouble.

I will say in San Fran's defense that walking around all day after Mass at the Basilica on Dolores, I got a feeling of Spanish Harlem at the Mission. It's more Mexico than Puerto Rico. There is a lot going on in the Mission and I can buy my platanos and Yerba Matte for cheap.

I did manage to find a Bontanica on 23rd and later another more Yoruba on 21st and Valencia. They sold Palm 3.50 the serving of a small cup of teriyaki sauce.

I'll have to find an African Food Shop soon. That's way too much.

Monday, May 22, 2006

So what's up with me

This is probably a rant or just a ramble. I haven't been on the blog since the last.
But to be brief, I've returned to Delaware again, went to the water and did my first
offical sweat which left me empty (in a good way) of the madness and ill that keeps coming.

Emotional block and time delays...yeah I got both and it's getting wozzy.
My mom has been in the hospital for over a month and I'm there basically everyday
but am now trying to go every other and procedures that matter. Like today she has
another surgery on her right arm. Too much to get into now but maybe later I'll post
my journal/email/letters that I've been sending to a handful of close friends.

I'm playing her health advocate now, her power of attorney and and handling
her bills and so. I have sister but I am essetially the only child here and it's
bugging me when folks ask if I have siblings...well yeah but

And me? Well, I didn't work for a month and slowly getting back
to the real of my crib and my bills.

I'm praying this will be the last week for her to be in the hospital
with hospital food and nurses either great or bogus.

She'll need therapy hardcore.
I'm going back to Delaware in June for four days to meditate again.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

postcard from delaware river

i went on a road trip today. there was no clear indication
that i would last night but then, at that divine hour, I was running
to the grocery store to buy water and salad mix. today I was to meet
my high school home room teacher of many years...the mother
of two children who kept rewinding Yellow Submarine many times
who are now at universities in Italy getting ready to get married
and wandering the country

wow...almost 18 years.

she looks the same, i look the same. time has served us well.
when I was in high school, her husband then was my math teacher
(this tall crazy white guy who I later found out was Tsalagi who taught
us geometry with hand strings and computer art)

He was also my first introudction into the Tsalagi language.

Over time, I baby-sat along with joining them at
Ketoowah ceremonies held monthly in NYC.

I mainly went to the new moon ceremonies, at the time Grandfather
took me in with the answering of some simple questions...he passed some
time after my arrival there. His apprentice took over and the other elder,
Grandfather Bill handled the language lessons.

for reasons, i left the circle to find myself and during those 15 or so
years, I fell out of touch with her, in touch with her...always with
years in between. i guess we both had things to do.

so now i'm in a car with two other women that i've just met today.
Older sisters living in Brooklyn. Oddly, we're all meeting each other
for the first time.

we got lost. Route 80. 611 611 south. river road....well we went
both directions of the river before we knew where we were at. during this time,
we watched a hawk in the sky, we glimpsed at a mountain which seemed
to have this extreme scar of rocks running across its face. we went from
city to forest to houses in colonial america. we talked.

we did finally arrive. my home room teacher...looks exactly as she did.
me the same with the exception of my strike coming into bloom.
we hugged and entered the house. it was packed with folks
i guess some coming further than us new yorkers. we had missed
prayers by and in the river but because the winds were blowing really
swiftly, they decided most of the ceremonies would be inside.

no sweat lodge still worked out.

some in not much specifics: drumming. singing. prayers. more prayers.
tobacco, tears, bounding, reuniting. buffalo burgers.

it's hard being a vegan when there's buffalo burger.

the day opened me up to good dreaming again.
how dreams are wonderful when they are clear and bountiful

there was a moment to rest and my road trip big sisters took a walk
back to the river. i had been told to go to the river for the past year now
and this was like the river coming to me. two of us already had a
relationship to the river, to the numbers, pennies and candy.
the other did not.

so i just reminded them and some how, despite us not planning or
even having a moment to plan, we found candy and coins. enough
for each of us. and so we just prayed. we prayed hardcore.

not for ourselves but for everyone, each other and left anything
having to do with us...last. it's what praying should be about.

our coins and butterscotch flew in the air and kissed the delaware.

and then we hugged. for a long time.

by nightfall, all the stars were clearer than my time spent
in Jamaica. the dipper was huge. orion was as well.

i could not believe how wonderful i felt. how blessed
i was to have gone when it didn't look like i would

how wonderful

Friday, March 17, 2006

And so it begins part 2

Exhibit B: Jungle Fever

Now why do I point to Spike Lee's tale of intercultural love and denial?

Well that is because, it was the first major role for another Oscar winner.

Miss Halle Berry.

Which of course some time after led to her role in

where she played what?

Another crackhead.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

And so it begins

because of all the massive remarks towards the Oscars,
I thought I would begin this journey...a montage much like
the cowboy one jon stewart assembled....but one that
profiles many of the roles our most respected actors
have played, some to much critical acclaim.

Exhibit A. Morgan Freeman as Fast Black the Pimp

costarring with Christopher Reeves aka Superman

Now I waiting to watch this flick (my netflix is coming)
but while I wait, please notice the intensity in his grasp
around the pistol, how his left fist is rolled effortlessly,
all aimed at the man of steel's head.

To imagine, a pimp kicking superman's ass...

Cryptonite? Go figure.

Disclaimer: This blog entry is in no way meant or intended
to demoralize Christopher Reeves. His battle against his condition
alone many folks would not have be able to endure.

Mad respect to him, his wife, and his foundation.