Monday, August 22, 2005

Domestication pt. 2: response to timi

Timi's going to eventually release this post about domestication soon. But I want to speak on behalf of men everywhere. I will not be silenced. I will not be hushed. You can no longer move us to the back of the closet. We will be heard. We will be listened to. You can no longer ignore us. We are a rising force to be dealt with.

Do you know, for instance, that there are male presidents. Did you know that with some room for feasibility and probability, there could very well be a young boy out there who could run for and maybe even win the presidency of the United States of America? Or at least the prime ministry of Canada. After all, they are fairly progressive up North.

But we are constantly being brought down low. No one listens to us. No one hears our cry. O, how long, o Lord, before you hear us? How much longer will the females rage? We are belittled at every turn, at every corner, in every market. We are looked over and inspected as pieces of meat. We are passed over in promotions. We must constantly dress to impress. And if we want to be noticed, we must debase our bodies and hold out ourselves as if to inspection.

I sometimes wish we could stay home!

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Billy Ray Cyrus Lives in Toronto.

He lives. He walks. He drinks Frapp's at Starbucks, and he wears normal colored jeans with a reasonable fit. No overly snug, stone washed rinses in sight.

He's fairly bright-faced. Smiling, often. He has shoulder length, straight brown hair that curls itself into a half smile when it meets his neck - he's well aware that mullet's are scoffed at openly in the metropia. He doesn't demand immediate attention, anymore. Everyone's Achey Breaky Heart has been burried in the 90's timecapsule in the football field at the back of their old elementary schools...or middleschools. He doesn't live in the past. He has an acting career now, on primetime Canadian TV. He's a new type of turnover celebrity. Sorta like when Bon Jovi got that reoccuring role on Ally McBeal (before it got cancelled without warning).

He smiles and waves back at the people who gasp and recognize him, and he walks off at a slow pace. The small groups behind him whisper their loves and/or hates towards this one hit wonder and wander around wondering what to do with the sighting of that once and before superstar.

They wait. Stare. Try to make him out, walking down Spadina Rd. amidst the thick-like-ganja-smoke Toronto smog that looms over his concrete footprints.

And he's gone. Like that. And they return to their listless chatter whilst harassing another poor server girl for extra foam on a soy milk,decaff, extra tall latte with cinnamon sprinkles. Make that an iced latte, please.
They open up the newspaper and forget what just happened, content with knowing that it just doesn't matter anymore.

Billy Ray Cyrus lives in Toronto. And he's just another random man who really likes Frapp's on a hot summer's day.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Wherupon Jason Imagines What He Might Say If He Were Drunk



You wanna know what? Y'all cry too damn much, dammit.

Bunch of whiny babies in diapers.

Listen. At least you have parents. Bo'f of 'em. You got a place to live. And a family. A whole bunch of families.

Your daddies an' your mamas don't cuss you out. They may be anngray wis' yu, but they ain't gunna do nofin'. Shiite Muslims all ove the werld an' yu wurried bout some stupid people in the church say about you?

Whaaaa whaaa! Evrybody is looking up to me! Everybody is expecting me to be good! Boo-f'in'-hoo!

You poor babies! Shut the f-up!

Oh no, you have people at your house for dinner. Oh no, you have to eat at theirs for dinner. Oh no, you have to act civilized for two whole hours a week. Oh no, you have to act decent at school 'cuz everybody knows you're the preacher's kid.

And your mom and your daddy are niss to people even when they can't stand zem.


Billy Ray

So can we talk about these lyrics? Because as a preacher's son, I rather like the idea of a woman singing about me as the only one who could reach her....hyuck...but seriously. I was playing this like 12 sundays ago (gotta love the adamic calendar) and my "office" adjoins my mother's office (she's the preacher man by the way) and it was all:

What is that?!

Cat Stevens? (**i didn't know**)

The son of a preacher man?? (with disdain, she quoted a few lyrics by heart)

Yeah, that's it...

Adam, it's Sunday, please try to be reverent.


and so, a dozen sundays later, I wanna know what I done wrong!
read 'em and speak:

(I can use my imagination and figure out what the song means, but I wanna discuss it, and also hear if anyone knows the real history of the song.)

Son of a Preacher Man Lyrics from Dusty Springfield

Billy-Ray was a Preacher's son,
And when his daddy would visit he'd come along,
When they gathered round and started talking,
That's when Billy would take me walking,
Through the back yard we'd go walking,
Then he'd look into my eyes,
Lord knows to my suprise:

The only one who could ever reach me,
Was the son of a preacher man,
The only boy who could ever teach me,
Was the son of a preacher man,
Yes he was, he was, oh yes he was.

Being good isn't always easy,
No matter how hard I tried,
When he started sweet talking to me,
he'd come tell me everything is alright,
he'd kiss and tell me everything is alright,
Can I get away again tonight?.

The only one who could ever reach me,
Was the son of a preacher man,
The only boy who could ever teach me,
Was the son of a preacher man,
Yes he was, he was, oh yes he was.

How well I remember,
The look that was in his eyes,
Stealing kisses from me on the sly,
Taking time to make time,
Telling me that he's all mine,
Learning from each others knowing,
Looking to see how much we'd grown.

The only one who could ever reach me,
Was the son of a preacher man,
The only boy who could ever teach me,
Was the son of a preacher man,
Yes he was, he was, oh yes he was.

Thanks to hojo for the corrections

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Dinner with 2 sisters and a baby

I bundled over to my right, trying to block her view. Nee* can get peculiar. And stubborn. The other diners, over my shoulder, were staring at her while she was eating. She was working hard to return the favor. It not only made her uncomfortable and nervous, it made her upset and edgy.

"Maybe," I offered, "they're not used to the sight of a white grown man with two black young women. And a baby."

"It don't matter," she canaried, "they shouldn't be staring at people when they're trying to eat. You wouldn't like that.

"Look, now they're scared."

"Scared of what?"

In hindsight, at this point I should have turned over and waved friendly at the people. Maybe offered them some of our warm and fizzle-free 7-Up. Maybe we would have made some new friends. Or, maybe it would have set some stuff off.

In order to get to talk to either of them, I had to take both of them. Being a male youth worker, and an unmarried one at that, I have to make precautions, especially in this day and age and especially around females. Their cousins wanted to come along too. No. I spend plenty of time with them. And they're already being discipled. Actually, Chi is too. By another new mother in the church.

"Everytime I talk to Jen, my anxiety goes away."

"That's 'cuz she prays with you," Nee offers, pre-staring contest.

"Yeah, it's gone for the whole night. But when I go out, it starts acting up... But it hardly ever happens at church."

"Do you think it's mostly places you're unfamiliar with?"

"Yeah, places I'm not so comfortable."

Not that her home life is all that comfortable. Those who don't believe in spiritual activity would be inclined to say that there is just some sort of shared traumatic history that members of their household went through. I don't know if that element is true or not. And yet, I do not feel free to divulge what I do know. Except that it is genuinely scary. They and their aforementioned cousins have similar dreams, constantly, of a harrowing nature. I would venture to say it's of a demonic nature also.

The girls' father recently re-entered their lives late last year as he realized, partially at least, that grandfatherhood was upon him. I met him and talked with him while we were in the hospital room with Chi and newborn Dawn. But the girls, being raised by an older female relative, are a bit mistrustful of him. I guess I would be too, if my dad had left me for some fifteen years. The other girls' father comes around every once in a while, but is in no state to take care of anyone. I'm amazed they have any trust in me.

"Where are we at? We're at a pizza place with one of our church members," Chi answers her father.

And here I was, worrying about answering my phone during dinner. Of course, it didn't ring.

"Tell him I got a new phone number," Nee tries to edge in.

"Where we at?"

I tell her and she relays the two corners.

"Aww, man. Jason, why didn't you tell him we're some place else?"

"They're not coming. They said it's too far away for them."

Their father lives in the same neighborhood as my brother. But I wondered who "they" were.

"Why didn't you tell him I got a new phone?"

Later I inquired about the baby's father, as Dawn was busy trying to pull everything in her reach to the precipice of danger.

"I talked to him for a little bit. Can't talk long on the phone, though."

"Yeah," I paused at my deep-fried appetizers. "What's the news on his case?"

"They're just holding him. Trying to find some evidence."

Eight months ago, while his baby girl was being born, they were still looking for evidence. In a murder charge. A stupid, unnecessary, thuggish, theiving murder. By the nature of the crime, they should have gotten the evidence by now.

"They say they got two years to find the evidence. Then they let him go."

"Really?" My brows were furrowed by this point. "They're just looking for a scapegoat now. Until somebody turns in the guilty party."

"We see him all the time."

"Walking down the street."

"Supposed to be innocent until proven guilty."

"Seems like he's guilty until proven innocent."

"Yeah." Nee was multi-tasking at this point. Listening and entering the conversation, eating, staring and seething.


"But, why is that?"

"He's a teenager. He's a male. And he's black."

I didn't mention that he probably also may have had a record, a few run-ins with the Blues, ran with the wrong crowd and, until the last couple months before he was tossed away and the baby was expected, was banging and selling.

But they knew that. And they also knew that he was ratted, probably by the perpetrators. And that he wouldn't and couldn't name them. Some damn code of honor. In the meantime, Dawn has never seen her father and may not for a long time. He will not be the same man on the other end.

I think I found my mission for the remainder of my youth pastorate.

*All names, besides mine, have been changed. We ain't in the business of sharing people's business.