culture

Before Coffee

 As I was sitting and waiting for an open table at Starbucks with a electric outlet, I sit next to my intended prey waiting for vacancy. The occupant taking my space at the time was a large black man dress in sweatpants and ragged tank top. In Los Angeles some people like to dress down, to dress ironic by wearing ragged close or clothes with pre-made holes in it, this was not this mans case. He clearly lived on the street, not obviously but it was clear to me after a few minutes of waiting on him, observing his slumped manner tattered shoes and the thing that I notice in a lot of people who live on the street here in Los Angeles, nothing, the lack of ambition in their eyes, the lack of soul. Living in Los Angeles, Downtown Los Angeles to be exact, you sort of grow desensitized from the epidemic of homelessness in our city, as you pass city block by downtown city block the chances of you not seeing a homeless person or someone begging are rivaled by lottery odds or hitting some sort of impossible bulls eye.

        You can see the defeat, the lack of care and the sorrow behind it within the eyes of these poor souls who maybe by mistake found themselves in a bad place or purely through their own device find themselves out of luck. The sorrow was deep in this guy as he sat there, looking at his phone then looking around, looking at his phone then looking at me, that when I see it, the sorrow, the lack of fucks to give. I had not got my laptop out of my bag properly yet when he starts to get up, it looks like he is leaving he is facing me as he stretches to his feet, immediately I notice that unfortunately for both of us that he has no underwear on and his shirt or pants are doing nothing to help him with this horrifying dilemma. I do not want to look, as a matter of fact I can not look away to not look at this mans' bare ass, its unusual for one, for me. outside of porn to see a mans; bare ass and not only that, that was the draw in, I could not stop looking because of the grossest of grossest scabs on this guys left ass cheek. If I am doing anything I am underestimating how nasty it was, something that one of your friends would send you to gross you out level gross.

        I sat frozen in complete discuss and insignificant horror as he paraded this scab in front of me like a protestor on picket line for better wages, I can not get the stunned look off my face even for politeness sake, the thought of his scabby bare ass on that seat made me want to fucking puke my guts out. He did not leave but he did get up and go outside leaving his phone charging and his hoodie on the back seat of the chair I wanted to sit in, use to want to sit in. I move outside, the coffee shop is on a street corner so the outside is divided by the entrance of the coffee shop. As  I pack up my stuff and begin to move, there is a young man sitting close to the order area, he must be waiting for a electrical outlet like me because he is just sitting there, he did not order coffee, he did not even pull his phone out, oh well, not my business and the only reason this is noticeable is because of what he does next.

 

 

            I reach the door to the patio area of the other side of the coffee chop and sit down and begin to  administrate my website and dig for weird, silly and strange news stories to post. IT is an on going thing this administrating but sometimes I like to go to my near by coffee shop and sit and people watch for a little while before return to my apartment and continuing to administrate and dig for stories, write music, think and create. Just I I start typing the description for the latest podcast, the kid from inside the store whips the door open and as though he had my attention says something to me, it is sharp and at first I could not make out what he was saying he said it fast and caught me off guard, I did not even know if he was talking to me. He said something along the lines of , " I took that shit!" , " I took that shit?" I thought, I second guessing my self start checking to make sure I had all my stuff I came to the coffee shop with, phone , check, computer, duh, wallet, never left my pocket. after reassuring myself that I would not have to chase this kid down because he whodini'd my wares away I shrug it off and go back to my administration. A coffee shop employee rushes outside a few minutes later and peers down the direction the kid went, the look on his face was one of confused absurdity and a little humor. I ask him, assuming that the reason he is peering down the street was the kid, what did the kid do, the coffee shop employee answered, " he took the tip jar!" At that very moment he got called back to his post and I shook my head with slight chuckle and returned to administrating.

a thing to think

A thing to think

by vince stephen

 

 

Okay I have been thinking about ways to make the discussion of race more palatable for everyone. Instead of setting up the conversations by establishing posture and debate points. Even though I think that we should be discussing matters of cultural differences and racial differences, I do not see any progression from discussion, it seems to me all of our cultural tolerance achievements are not coming from an essay that we read every other month. Our cultural tolerance and racial tolerance achievements are made from our interactions with each other, our willingness to allow people different from us to be with and around us, not being deterred by simple biological differences. I do think that most people believe that our racial manners need tending to, but I do not think most those people know how damaging racial and cultural intolerance could be.

        Lets just admit for example, we can all agree that there is, at the very least, a small amount of people from every race that, if there was a physical button they could press that annihilate every race but there own, they would press that fucking button twice a day, three times on Sunday. This is the extreme example but these people exist, in wide ranges of craziness from just not wanting to deal with other cultures and races to the before mentioned ,wanting other races and cultures wiped off the map, if not just certain particular ones. Just for the record I believe we have the capacity to thrive together, multi-cultural and all, bring on the quirks, awkward moments of being introduced to a new culture and bring on the food.

 

    However, obviously everyone does not think like me so I right silly articles that make no difference, like I wish my skin color didn't. Burn. I apologize for that, I am weak. Back to the lecture at hand though, people with intolerant thoughts do not just live in Anytown,USA and share a trailer full of races ideas. They are everywhere doing anything within any personality, basically I am saying you can not tell who harbor these feelings, a teacher? a judge? a friend?

I have racist family members, I am sure we all do, and they have jobs and bias. Maybe they do not write checks or own business or have employees, but the bas does not go away so, am I suppose to believe there are no racist in positions of power? Oh, but they leave that part of their lives at home right?, like, " work is no place for my racist thoughts".

 

    The danger in cultural and racial intolerance is in the institution and in the system, which has been beat to death. I have written before about race on this blog(too much if you ask me) and not in a celebratory way, obviously with all the issues currently in our society with cops  recent shooting non-threatening black men and recent threatening black men shooting cops. The situation is terrible and it makes it hard for those who are working to make strides to approve the relationships with police officers in their town. The are too many variables and moving parts in society to use broad strokes and say we all need to do this or we all need to do that, it is not easy. Every situation, every community and every person deserves proper attention when faced with these issues and we as a whole should not be looking at how much shame to put on someone and help that person, instead of doing what we always do and say "ah he fucked up, fuck him". I get it, you can not save everyone but we have to stop throwing people away.