Life

You Can’t Run Away from Yourself

 

 

Hate is a Powerful Emotion and a Dangerous one. It can cause Ill-Effects on your Health Physically and Emotionally, on others also. It can Destroy People’s Lives, yours also. It can have effects on how you deal with Family Members and the People you work with.

Nineteen seventy one, I was seventeen years old working full-time and going to School. I worked for a High Class Restaurant located on fifth Avenue where Dinner was one Hundred Dollars a Plate. I was a Pantry Chef, the Money was Great for a High School Kid. The Exposure to different People and Lifestyles were Awesome. My Boss however was a Hater who had no Respect for Black People even if you were seventeen years old, great at what you do and never received one Complain, only Compliments and Tips from the Customers.

My Grandma was a Baker, known for Miles for her Cakes. I was only Four but I was her little helper, always watching and tasting. My Mother was a Professional Cook, working in Kitchens before any other Women. Her word of Advice, whatever you do, be the Best, always go the extra Mile. She said that Racists will never Accept you but they will Respect you for the Job you Do. Mother wasn’t usually wrong about anything, except this one. This was my first real Job, a test for Moms Declaration, It failed miserably. This Man didn’t care that I was making him one Thousand Dollars per Night. I was Black and that was that. He tried to humiliate me in front of the all white Wait Staff. So began my Odysseus of  walking out of good Jobs once the ugly Head of Racism popped up.

On my way to work riding the number four Train where I did my Homework. I couldn’t concentrate to do my Homework. All I could think about was going to work and throwing my Boss from the sixtieth Floor. From my Violent Youth I know that it was time to go. When I was fourteen I kicked a Teacher’s Ass for grabbing my Testicles. I know that he would eventually loose that Eye. I exited the Train at forty second Street, walked up fifth Av went upstairs, punched in and immediately punched back out. This was the first of many good paying Jobs I walked out on not giving one minute notice. I have no problems with Closet Haters, after all this is America, Freedom of Choice. All I ask is, keep your Ignorance to yourself. Don’t put me in a Corner and poke me with a Stick. My Wife says that I use Biblical Quotes self servingly.

My Right Hand have offended me on just about every Jobs that I have worked in this Hateful Land. Nineteen seventy seven I did the same thing working at an all White County Club in Texas, this was a no Brainer. My Boss called me across the Dining Room floor, ” Mr Dixon, please come here,” one of the Members stood up and ask, what is this World coming to? Did you hear that White Man called that Nigger Mr. Again my Mind told me to react Violently, once again I walked out on a good paying Job. I was not taken aback by his Vociferous Diatribe, after all this was Texas 1977. The only things they Detested more than Interracial Marriages were Hippies and Drugs. To be caught with less than an ounce of Marijuana could get you twenty years.

Five years earlier a young Black Man who had a White Girlfriend was beaten within Strands of his Life and dumped across State Line, in a Ditch to Die of his Wounds. They wave the Confederate Flag Proudly. Nineteen seventy nine I was Grandfathered into the Investment Banking Company of Solomon Brothers Inc. Working as a Contract Employee I was given the choice of working for Solomon or to be desolved along with the Contract. Filling out Employment Forms were only a Formality, I was already guaranteed the Job. The Personnel Manager was Dumbfounded by the Number of Jobs that I had for my Age. Little did he know that Solomon was also  Destined for my List of former Employment. I worked in the Internal Security Department.

Our Job was to protect the Company’s Assets of six Billion Dollars, some Instruments were Bearer Bonds, one piece of paper that was worth Millions. Another part of my department’s Job was to protect the Company’s Data. One Day while walking through the Mergers and Acquisitions Department, I noticed papers left on a Xerox Machine. I started reading The Copies left behind, my Curiosity exploded. I started digging through the Garbage Can. What I found could have made me an instant Millionaire. I had in my possession Inside Information on a Hostile Takeover. My findings and my Report made it to John Gutfreund’s Desk. Months went by and The Issue was Water under the Bridge. Nonetheless The King of Wall Street knew who I was and had developed The highest Respect for me.

One Day while waiting for the Elevator, a Crowd gathered, Gutfreund emerged from the Crowd of all Managing Directors. They were showering him with Praise. I guess that Huge Money was made. The Elevator arrived,  wanting to be the first off the Elevator, I allowed them all to get on ahead of me. I entered the Elevator and turned my Back to the Crowd. Someone in the Crowd tapped me on my Shoulder, I looked around, it was Gutfreund, he said good Morning young Man. He didn’t say a word to the Crowd of Brownnosers, I was the only one on that Elevator that he spoke to. I felt like a Weasel for not speaking first. The Respect He showered me with had a Humbling Effects.

When the Vault was Audited I was assigned to Babysit The Accountants, when his Twelve Million Dollars Apartment on Fifth Avenue was Renovated, I was given the Assignment to Babysit The Contractors. There were Retired Police Officers in the Department, yet I was chosen to protect John’s Array of Priceless Ming Collection. Mr G as I called him had restored all my Self respect that was taken from me by Haters. The Director of my Department was a Retired NYC Chief of Police, his Assistant was also a Retired Chief of Police, both Haters. Within a short while they were both replaced. The replacement, a Retired FBI Biggie and a Retired NYC Police Sergeant, both Haters. I asked myself, is this Hate Business Institutionalized? The Department was basically purged. One of my new Coworkers once asked me how did I get in. In other words, I was Black, he continued, who do you know.

In other Words a Black Man couldn’t secure a Position in a Prestigious Company like Solomon without a Hook. At that time in our Glorious History Black People were far and few on Wall Street. To work on Wall Street you had to be the very best at what you do, if you are Black. I thought that I had secured my Last Job, despite the Atmosphere, I was going to Retire from Solomon in twenty five years. The Fringes were Phenomenal. My first year Bonus was eight Thousand Dollars the Healthcare package better than Government Employees. My Profit sharing Investment in High Risk grew quickly. Why would I leave, I decided that the Slings and Arrows of Hate couldn’t chase me away. How Naive I was. After Ten years of Exceptional Service.

One Day I visited Solomon’s new location on the sixty ninth Floor of the World Trade Center. I was so Taken by the Ambience, I quickly submitted my request for a Transfer. Being a Model Employee who only missed two Days of work in ten years, I was certain that it was a done Deal. Was I in for a Surprise when my Hateful Superiors Denied my Transfer, strictly on the Color of my Skin. I was once again Face to Face with the Ugly Heads of Medusa. Once again I cut my Right Hand off. I Cashed in my Portfolio, flipped them the 🐦 and moved to Pennsylvania. One Day while working in a Resort, I watched the Worst Day in American History.

I didn’t see the Planes hit the Buildings, all I saw was the Building that Solomon occupied collapsing Floors after Floors till there was only Dust. All my Friends were gone, so were my Enemies, Solomon lost nine Hundred Employees, I would have been Nine o one. I remember the Day that my Transfer was Blocked. My Mother saw my Depression and asked me what was wrong. I told her that they Blocked my Transfer. She responded everything happens for a Reason, God has Plans for you. My Advice to you who are on your way, don’t do as I did, when the Heat gets Hot don’t run stand your Ground and fight. Nobody is giving you anything for free. Most of all earn your Respect, never lose your Self Respect because of what Haters do or say.

These are the Lyrics to my favorite Song by my favorite Group Through the Roots.

Where are we going

Look where we’ve been

Ignoring the signs

Blinding our eyes

Where will it end

We can live in the light

Or hide in the darknes

We continue to fight

Though we didn’t start this

And it’s killing me

See this world that we share

Painted by artists

Placing strokes without care

Think it’ll be easy to find some peace in a world but we’re are all just fighting each other

But a perfect pitch has a perfect plan and it’s not just a crushing of color

Can you hear my voice as I’m crying out

This is the movement, so move with me now, now

I believe that if we come together

We can get higher, higher, higher

I believe that if we stand together

We will rise higher, higher, higher

I believe that life is a canvas its all part of something bigger

Constantly changing with the times an ever evolving figure

What will it take to walk hand in hand change with the times and understand

Make harmony what’s unity

Erase the meaning of a foreign land

Now it’s a world with no borders

Demanding a new world order

Imagine that we never had to read another story of a life cut short by a murder

It should be easy to find some peace in a world since we all share this place with each other

Its up to us to spread the love around

We’ve got to support one another

Can you hear my voice as I’m crying out

This is the movement, so move with me now, now

I believe that if we come together

We can get higher, higher, higher

I believe that if we stand together

We will rise higher, higher, higher

I believe that if we come together

We can get higher, higher, higher

I believe that if we stand together

We can rise higher, higher, higher

Source: Musixmatch

Songwriters: Dwight Duncan / Troy Barrington Mclean / R. Mcleod / Carl Mcleod / Dwight Marvin Duncan / Carlton Oliver Mcleod / Raymond Mcleod / Raymond Vincent Mcleod

America, Life, Motivation

R.I.P

That was just a Dream

Wrong is just Wrong

The System Fails us Daily, I should’nt have  the Notion to touch Base with it. People far more qualified have tackled it and failed. However I must observe that Man have been Flawed since the Day Cain rose up out of Jealousy and  Killed. No Matter how near or Far, if you Kill in the absence of self defense, you are Flawed. That’s a nice way of saying you are Abnormal, in a way Handicapped, being unable to Rationalize your Thoughts before you Act. With that said I must tell you about a young Woman I met years ago. She was Vacationing with her Parents at the Resort I worked. Being a People Person I struck up a Conversation with her Parents. When I told them that I Blogged, they asked me to write about Jenny.

I asked them to talk about their Daughter who sat in a Wheelchair in a Degenerative Paulsey condition. While they talked she listened intensely and made poor speech gestures, agreeing and disagreeing. Jenny turned out to be one of the most Fascinating People I have ever met. She proved to me that we are who exactly who or what we choose to be. She was one of the Poster Children that forced Government and Society to create Handicap Accessibility to Public Buildings. Once that was accomplished after a long Uphill Battle, she went on to School and obtained two Degrees In Social Science dealing with People of her Kind. The sad outcome, she never landed a Job in her Field. All everyone saw was her Debilitating Physical appearance, not the Gifted Mind and Resilience. So you see  Prejudice goes beyond Color or Race.

The World's Greatest Daredevil

Sad but nonetheless a true Story of Human Strength. Something that so few posses, the strength to hold Convictions and to be resolute with what you do with your Life. I was given the Conviction to change my Life and I did. It is so easy to Blame, even tho God gave you Convictions to change the things you are able to change, and to accept with Serenity that which you can’t.The Choice to Hate is equivalent to Smoking Cigarettes, it’s a bad choice, you know that it’s bad for your Health, yet you puff away. Well my Friend Hate carry the same weight for your Mental Health, Nonetheless you Puff away on the Cigarette called Hate. Remember the Word Abnormal, unable to constructively rationalize your Thoughts. It’s an absolute Shame that some  Institutions are named after Great Men.

My High School for instance, William Howard Taft. When I attended Taft it was eighty five percent White, ten percent Black and five percent Latino. The latter two came to the Neighborhood for a better Life, a safer Place than the Hood, most of all a better Education. The Neighborhood’s Racial Gentrification was  representative of the School. The Abnormal  Attitude that these People had was that we didn’t belong there.(“This Land is your Land this Land is my Land , this Land was made for you and me”) After School there were Black Bashing, White Bashing and Gay Bashing, welcome to the Bronx 1969. America was on Fire with Hate and the Fire still Burns today. Doctor King Squelched it somewhat but the Embers refuse to be extinguished. The Movie the Bronx Tale said it all.

I have been walking through the Valley of the Shadows of Death for fifty Years. I am not coining Phrases, 1971 I escaped the Shadows of Death by God’s Grace. Years after many Black Men had Sacrificed their Lives so I could walk down an all white Street and wasn’t set upon by Children of Haters who inherited their Parents Hate, or  overzealous Block Watchers or even the Cops, like it happened to me in 1971. This was  Just around the time when J Edgar Hoover ran the FBI like a Luftwaffe. He  waged War on the Black Panther Party killing everything that looked Militant. At that point in time it appeared that Racism was Institutionalized in America. Many Days walking through White Neighborhoods all I could hear in my Head was Arlo Godfry’s song ” this Land is your Land this Land is my Land this Land was made for you and me”.

That Sentiment almost got my Friends and I Killed walking through all White Bensonhurst Brooklyn 1971. It was a beautiful Summer’s Day we were on our way to a Backyard Cookout near Bensonhurst. We got off the Train and  decided to take a shortcut through an all White Block. We weren’t half way through the Block before we were swarmed by Cops with Tactical Gears, the only thing they didn’t have was Rocket Launchers. Five well Dressed Black Kids, the oldest was nineteen. If one of us got nervous and ran or reached for Identification, we  would all be Dead, they all had Shotguns. After we showed ID and explained where we were heading the Trigger Fingers were relaxed, one Cop explained that a Neighbor called and told them that a Black Gang was loitering in the Neighborhood. This is not about the angry Black Man Syndrome, I am way beyond small People with big Hate. I am on a Cloud looking Down on them knowing that I overcame all their Hate and have none of my own. One good thing about Living in America for over fifty years, I have seen one of Dr King’s Dream come true, watching a Rainbow Collation of People marching for George Floyd. Forget about the Looters and Rebel Rousers, they have been around since 1794 yelling Guillotine. Stand Tall America, your time has come to show the World who you are.

Life

I will always be there

 


You are young and in school, you meet  mr right, your heart tells you so. Things get hot and heavy,  bam you are pregnant, you marry him all is well and good, it’s the logical thing to do.  Baby is thriving well, it’s time to go go back to school. One Day you tell him of your intentions of going back to School. His male dominance surfaces, I would prefer if you stayed home he utters. I will always be here to provide for the family. Magnanimous gesture for sure, nonetheless finishing your education is as tangible as an insurance policy. Matter of fact more so if his testicles leads him from you. I have been married for thirty seven years, never once unfaithful, had many opportunities though I stayed the course. Whenever one of my friends got busted in their extra curricular activities, all I hear from her is, Men are Dogs.



I say to myself, not necessarily so they just think with their Testicles. A childhood friend of mine with a beautiful loving wife, taught that he  was too much for one woman. He had a woman in just about every State, he was away from Home more than a Traveling Salesman. The grief he caused this Woman, also a friend of mine made me despised him, her mother cared for me like a son. I had no choice  but to distance myself from him. I hope you are following my drift. Not all men is led by their Joystick. I stayed true to my wife and have no regrets for not being a Dog. There are so many contingencies why he may not be there for the long haul other than being unfaithful, it is of the utmost for you to be able to provide for yourself if the day comes. Not only that but two Incomes takes the Stress out of paying the Bills and living largely . Also the Days of the Wife staying Home and making Babies is long gone. Another friend of mine had a good marriage and a nice family, his wife however was an overbearing woman who taught her job was to mold him into the perfect Husband, always correcting and criticizing. One day he packed an overnight bag, telling her that he was working on a project that had to get done. No one have ever seen him again, nothing in this life is guaranteed.

 



Early in my Marriage I once told my wife that she was driving me crazy. Her response, it’s a wife’s job, to some Men that’s reason to run. No one knows what the future holds for us, that’s why you need to cushion yourself for whatever life throws at you. Janice was  sixteen years old when she hooked up with an older Man with plenty of money, by twenty she had three children for him. He told her there was no need to finish her education and no need to further her ambition of becoming a nurse, because he made enough money and would always be there. Ten years later he was convicted of murder never to walk the streets again. She was now twenty six with three children to feed, no education and no skills entering the workforce for the first time. All that I am saying is, don’t get caught up in the Honey Trap when everything is so sweet and cushy that you are unable to be objective and pragmatic about the rest of your Life. Don’t forget that Momma may have, Pops may have, Husband may have, Boyfriend may have but God bless the Girl that’s got her own. I once knew a Man who was married for twenty five years, he told me that he had fifty thousand dollars that his wife knew nothing about. I asked him why, he responded that it was his runaway Money if the day comes.

 

 

Anyone can wake up with their Running Shoes on a Sunday morning. Like No Doubt puts it, you came up with the Breeze ( running out on a Relationship) without a warning. Life is filled with uncertainties especially in Relationships, don’t put all your Eggs in one Basket, sleep with one Eye open. You might not get a restful Night’s sleep but there will be no surprises. Many Men are intimidated by a Professional Women or an independent one. The Old Days were Brutal, when I was fourteen I lived next door to a Man who didn’t allow his Wife to spend Money. She was a Seamstress with good Skills, every Penny she made was handed over to him, whatever the Household needed he did all the spending. This Scenario parallels a Woman doing the same Job as a Man and getting paid less for doing a better Job, As you can see History repeating itself. I was only fourteen but I knew that there was something Deathly wrong with this situation, it was like a Scenario extracted from Oliver Twist, mean and Dominating. Worse of all he had four Daughters who were getting a bad Education of what a Relationship should be. One of the Daughters married the Man who had a Woman in every State, how Paradoxical Life can be. Life is like reaching in a Grab Bag, you never know what you are going to get, and that is your reason for being self supporting.

Life, Motivation

Life on the Line

There are four kinds of People in this World, People who make things happen, People who wonder what just happened here, People who wonder how did they do it and People who just don’t give a Rat’s. It’s good to know that there are People who make things happen, around you. Not Blowing Smoke, I have been that way since twelve or thirteen. Playing in the Schoolyard one of my Classmates fell and Slammed his Wrist on a Broken piece of Glass. The Wrist was severed, hanging on a Tendon. Most Twelve years old seeing someone Bleeding Out Screams and Panic. I took off my Belt and made a Turniquet, I tightened and release  till the Ambulance came, they told me that I had saved the Kid’s Life and his Arm. I have always been impressed by Ordinary People performing Extraordinary Acts, knowing exactly what needs to be done at the right Moment, many times saving Lives. The Shierff Deputy on duty at Majorie Stoneman High School heard Shooting going on in the School. Yet he made no effort to enter the Building. When the Shooting stopped, seventeen Students were Dead. Four kinds of People in the World.

Thirty years later while working on a Construction Site in Erie P.A. , we were doing Interior Demolition. The Building was an Abandoned. U.S. Steel Foundry. Working in Construction, Safety was always my number one Priority. I was properly outfitted in a Safety Harness and tied off on Rafters, my Coworker was a Macho Man, who felt that he didn’t need one. There was a Wall twenty feet high thirty feet long and one foot Thick. It was this Wall he chose to walk, after walking for fifteen feet, the wall started  squeeking. As soon as I heard the first squeek, I was on the Wall, dragging him to safety. There were People working below in the Room of Steel. My actions alerted them to run. After the last Man was out the Wall Collapsed. Can you imagine the sound a 100 Million Ton slab of Metal falling on to a Matal Floor. Back on the Landing where I pulled my Coworker to safety, I checked my Safety Harness to notice a Rip in one of the Straps, one broken Strap is very Dangerous, Thank you Lord.

Fifty five years later I was still doing it. When my Mother had Stubbed her Big Toe and Broke it in a Nursing Home, the so called Skilled Care Personnel did not check her out properly. Her Leg was Xrayed but not her Foot, That was an incompetent Blunder. As a result of that Blunder, a week later I noticed in all her Pain, in the Foot, was the result of a Broken Toe, now several Toes were turning green. I superseded the Staff and Called the Ambulance, one thing that I have noticed during my work Life, Foolish People always developed an Attitude when you are showing them how to do something the right way. From having three Toes infected with Gangrene, the leg had to be removed above the knee. In another Day or two nothing could have been done. I was Negligible by trusting the so called Skilled Care Staffing and not taking matters in my own Hands, by taking her to the Hospital and have a Cat Scan done, my Bad. She was in a skilled Care Facility stupid me trusted them. I have always had the Highest Respect for People who put thei’r Life on the Line. The Brave Soldier making the Ultimate Sacrifice, the People who Serve and Protect, the E.M.T knowing the Exact amount of a Drug needed to bring you out of a Seizure, and not enough to leave you rendered Intubated, where your Organs are too Dilated to do their Jobs. If the Ventilator Breath’s for you for longer than three Days, coming off it Successfully  is Rare. But these are the Decisions made Daily, People that makes things Happen.

As the Song goes, “I feel Safe in New York City”. Well I feel Safe with the People around me who knows when to Act. My Wife worked for twenty five years in the Emergency Room at the V.A. Hospital, I jokingly told her that if I had that Job, I would be an Alcoholic. Many of her Coworkers and Friends did not Live to be her Age, the Stresses were Great. Last Saturday was an Extraordinary Day for me. I went to my Friend’s House for a day of Head butting about the Ills of The World and Society, as we always do when we meet. Earlier in the Day I was checking some Artificial Crab Meat to use for Bait. It has been sitting in the Refrigerator for Months, I smelled it to find no Odors, I licked it for Tart, there was none. Regardless, Bait is all that was to become of that. If I ate less than one Ounce of that Crab Meat I would not be here writing this.

As the saying goes ” let your Food become your Medicine before your Medicine becomes your Food. Living to be sixty seven have left me Privileged to many Sayings, many of them are words to live by. I don’t believe that I was at my Friend’s House for more than ninety Minutes, when I became Violently Ill, licking that Crab Meat had sent a Bacteria swimming in my Blood, it was trying to Kill me, I had Ptomaine Poisoning. Thinking that I wanted to Puke I stood up and wobbly walked five feet away from the Patio Furniture. All of a sudden an Electrifying Effect ran through my Brain, the Bacteria had reached my Brain, I was Blacking Out. On the way down Head first to the well laid Brick Walkway under me, I thought to myself, this is it you are Dying. Before my Knees hit the Pavement, Trevor had jumped into Action, he put me in a Bear Hug and laid me down comfortably on the Ground, all the time trying to Access my Conditions and keep me Focused. Lucky me Trev was once a Lifeguard.

Once I was on the Ground it was Good Night. My Brain was still Fighting to come Back, I was in a Place where there were nothing but Dark Gray Clouds, if that’s not Dying then how Far. Other than Trev shouting at me don’t close your Eyes, I knew for myself that the only way to get away from the Dark Clouds were to open my Eyes and Gaze on the 🌞. Ten Seconds later I was coming out of the Electrical Storm in my Brain, as I slowly Focused my World was upside down, I thought about closing my Eyes again for Comfort. Trevor’s Voice was loud and Instructive, ” Don’t Close your Eyes. Three minutes later I was able to open my Eyes without the Roller Coaster Effect. Once he realized that I was somewhat Focused, he went to work asking me all the Questions asked by an E.M.T. Personnel trying to find Cause and Effect, all the time Prodding me for him to call 911. I refused the 911 Call because I felt myself coming back Gradually. All during this Debacle he Hung with me Engaging me in Conversation making sure that I didn’t Regress. He Nursed me back to being Functional, he provided lots of Liquids Rollaids and Air Conditioning, all the time Prodding me, should he call. Once we moved inside he made a Bed for me on the Sofa, knowing that I needed Rest from that Ordeal, did I mention making things Happen. You can guess that  Life was no longer on the Line, when I Cracked to him that the A.C was so Cold that this is how they Preserved Bodies. Sunday I had to work for a couple of Hours, the Songs that Played in my Head, were ” if you’re going under I’ll be your Oxygen and How Wonderful Life is when you’re in the World, thanks Dirty Heads, Elton and thank you Trev. We walk not only by Sight but also by Faith.

P.S Lord! keep on proving yourself to me.

P.P.S. From the Outcomes I am here Today to tell you! Live each Day as if it were  your last! Live, Love,Laugh and Give God thanks for the Gift of Life, and for each Day that we are given.

Final Post Script

Why do I get the Feeling that I should be Living my Life closer to God.