September 29, 2008

Random Ramblings...As Arsenio Hall Used to Say, "Things that Make You Go Hmmmm!"

I have a former colleague/friend who would always challenge people in his presence to - as he would say - be "intellectual honest" about their intentions and motives. As I encounter people... strangers on the street and get to know the people I work and/or volunteer with I am always intrigued with people's intentions and motives. Like what's up with people who know you and will search you out at an event, but don't come over to speak to you? One of my friends called them "playa haters." She described them as people who want to know what you are into and/or doing but who do not have sincere intentions of supporting you. Hmmm...

What's up with people who volunteer with other people who volunteer for the same cause but feel it necessary to create caste systems or to talk down to people they feel aren't important enough to warrant respect. The other day I witnessed an interchange between a so-called lead volunteer and a general volunteer. I was amazed at the need for this particular volunteer to assert a kind of "lead" status and watched as this volunteer talked down to another woman with more than three decades of community service, leadership, and outreach in the community. Hmmm...

What's up with people who need to define themselves by their economic status? I met someone recently who made a great effort to distinguish her "middle class" self from low-income (class) people who live in the City. When I told her I was from a low-income family and lived in a low-income community, she looked at me and said something to the effect of "that is hard to believe." Why do we spend so much senseless time dividing ourselves? Hmmm...

The other day I was at a festival selling books. I greeted everyone that walked by the table with a, "Hello" and a smile. What's up with people who just give you a blank stare and no response? Do they think a return smile or "Hello" will signal an agreement and/or interest to sell books. Hmmm...

What's up with nonprofit organizations that tell their staff and/or students that it is unlawful to register clients to vote on-site because it is against the law for nonprofits to be involved in politics? I met a really nice lady who told me that this is what management at her organization told her and other employees. Hmmm...

What's up with guys who would rather spend a lifetime being promiscuous in uncommitted relationships rather than take the time to build committed relationships with women of substance? Hmmm...

What's up with a government that frowns upon so-called "welfare states" and "hand-outs" but will create an $800 bail out for big businesses? Why is it that the rules change when wealthy people with problems need help, but when poor people with problems need help it is business as usual? Hmmm...

September 8, 2008


don't wanna be half/thing.
don't wanna be less/than/thing.
don't wanna be confined/defined/refined.
don't wanna be inna box.
don't wanna be yawn/okay/but/no/time/for/that/now/thing.
don't wanna be guilt/thing.
don't wanna be screech/thing.
don't wanna be finger/point/thing.
don't wanna be weeping/thing/fussing/thing/cussing/thing.
wanna be free/wanna be free/wanna be free.
twenty-four hours a day/
seven days a week/
fifty-two weeks a year/
straight up, dead ahead,
no breaks, no tears, no fears free!
mean to be free!
mean to be free!
mean to be free...

Written by Pearl Cleage

September 1, 2008

In the Eye of the Storm...

Lord, I thank you for the opportunity to come before you today. I thank you for your love and grace. Lord, I ask that you have mercy on the families in Louisiana and the Gulf Coast Region. I ask that you send your holy spirit to protect and comfort those who have been evacuated and those who are left behind. I pray in Jesus name, Amen.