Friday, July 2, 2010

SAD THING IS, THE NOVEL ISN'T THAT 'NOVEL'

NEW READER SHOUT OUT

Not that I don't pay attention to when my follower count changes or anything like that but I do purport this to be an actual journal. So don't get me wrong when I say that I write this more for me than to attract attention. I flirted with the idea of an online journal for a bit before I actually decided to put more of myself into it. The circumstances I was in dictated that if I wanted to get my thoughts together and keep track of where I was going with those thoughts, it was actually more secure to put things down in an online journal. That is the irony of my being out here, that it was once more secure than trying to keep something in a journal on line than in the analog world.

So to all who have started to follow me, I would like to acknowledge you. Sorry if I don't do a 'roll call' or anything like that. Still, daps to you and you know who you are!!

THE MOVIE THAT WAS BASED ON THE BOOK BY SAPPHIRE

On Wenesday I like to check out movies from the library because I get 'extra' time with the weekend and the library being closed. Instead of the normal three days, I get to keep movies for 5 days and I check out 6 at a time. One of the movies that I finally broke down and checked out was 'Precious'.

I went to a nearby Subway and me and a couple got into a conversation about the movie. They had seen it and thought it was a little overrated and some of their critiques mirrored some of my reservations about the movie. I told them that since it was for free, I decided to see what all the commotion was about without having put $10 US down for a ticket. Let me say that straight away, it was an amazingly accurate and honest portrayal of an aspect of urban life, one that is brutally ignored within the African American community. That I read an entry by one of my 'blog heroes' and a true 'first responder' in the war for our children and the mix of some of what goes on in my current surroundings, along with my observation, it spurred a surge of emotion for me.

First, because I may have thought things was similiar enough for me to share my opinion in my comment, I may have been doing a little bit of 'as I say, not as I do'. I thought about that as I hit the 'post comment' button. *sigh* Hope they aren't like 'WTF?!? Why don't YOU do that with your situation?" I don't think that it isn't that I won't do the things that I say, which is end my relationship with my sisters, but that I didn't do and keep to that tacking SOONER.

As soon as I was able to get out and stand on my own, that was when I should have stayed to the process of cutting back on my peeps being a part of my life. I 'knew' that it would be beneficial to the both my siblings and myself if I went on with leaving out and not looking back. One of the reasons it has taken me so long to truly look forward to excuting and planning a life without their influence in my life, is because there is no truly epic breakdowns in my life or in my family to where I could fuel my will to shut that part of me down.

No abuse of any kind and if there was a 'favored' kid in our family, the sibs said it was me (but I think it was my darling brother). But I think that was an opinion pushed by crappy Jan (it's always Mark, Mark, Mark!!) and her self-loathing... and that is the segue.

The self loathing that black (yes, yes I do use the term'AA' and black interchangeably... sorry about that!)folks operate with was on display in the movie and how dense the gravity to break free and into orbit from that planet is, was also accurately portrayed. Because I have seen plenty of it and why self-esteem is such a valuable commodity for women and especially sister girls. I don't think there is a more exploited class of person that young black women, and that is coming from a person who unwittingly handled those weaknesses clumsily and selfishly.

I am not going to offer up any spoilers, but the finish of the movie was a powerful statement and with another powerful film, 'Antwone Fisher' puts a lot of the lie of the myth that black women are these wonderful and powerful one parent dynamos. This is going on observation, not experience.

There has been much said about how we allow the culture to teaches young sisters to be hypersexualized caricatures. The women who 'feel' Chris Brown after his appearance on the recent BET whatever is laughable. But when you have Rihanna singing odes to exactly the kind of cat (and what else does she think a 'Rude Boy' is capable of? It isn't that big a stretch for him to be a punk a** puncher, is it now?) who roughed her up, then what exactly are we telling young women to do? What message are we sending young men about how they treat and respect young women?

In fact, that has been part and parcel of why I haven't gone into any depth of what went down last weekend, or at least how I saw it. Because no matter what words I would use or the kind of spin I put on the incident, there is no way I could put it and be comfortable with what I had to say.

DEGREES OF SEPARATION

There are sisters who come thru these parts and they are so ugly physically that it upsets my stomach. That one of them has a 5 month old angers me because some cat was that desparate that he games this girl.

She has no discernible skill other than Facebooking. There are brighter lights in glove boxes than in her brain. And she is ugly... I never mentioned it but last year I distinctly recall the first time I saw her and how badly I wanted for a broadsword so I could say, 'back, back I say! Return ye to the foul depths from whence you came!'

And, she has a sister! I don't know if they are twins because their ugly is evenly distributed between them. I do know that they are related and I HATE when I see them around. Not only because they are difficult to countance but because they are stupid and share the kind of future that would bring them closer to being Precious' Mother than being like Precious.

WHAT ELSE I TOOK FROM THE MOVIE

Even though I felt that I overspoke in my comment, when the movie ended with Precious moving forward and the feeling that she was going to excell in spite of what she endured in her life, I said to myself, "That is how you do it!" Keep on doing what you know it best no matter what anyone else says or thinks. Like what I should have done.

When I was 17 and 18, still sending money home and gifts to my family from wherever I was stationed, I could excuse myself for not really believing that it was 'like that' for me. Even then I knew I could 'think too much'... no, I was TOLD that. Anywho, I know that in my heart I didn't want to believe what I was feeling and I don't think Precious wanted to believe what she was getting in feedback as well. Wasn't until she was exposed to something different that made her believe in herself that she was able to see more in life than her surroundings. Like I said, the lack of a seismic event growing up that signaled anything to me, kept me wondering if I wasn't making up a grand decit of a perception when it came to my family.

I never operated with the urgency that I guess my blog hero or Precious did. I always knew where my next meal was coming from and had everything that I needed and the things that I wanted, was able to go out and get what wasn't provided. That has what made me whining about things so unplatable to me, because I could have had an 'Antwone Fisher' life (but didn't) just as easily as some girl could be somewhere living a 'Precious' existence ( or a 'Winter's Bone' one, going by excellent reviews of that movie of a life in the Missouri Ozarks) right now. And I have no doubt that some are living those dreary lives and if not for people like my blog hero, would be doomed.

SINCE I AM RUNNING LONG...

... as my time grows 'short', I may explain why sometimes instead of pulling everything directly from what ever zip code I am in and what goes on there, I get an idea from the journals that I read. Happy Holidays!! Oh and don't forget that freedom isn't free, but it is costs whatever the Federal Reserve says it is!!

8 comments:

Thomas said...

"Precious" is one of those movies I've avoided because I'm afraid it would make me cry and I'd look like a wimp. But I'm thinking maybe I should man-up and go rent it anyway.

Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

It is hard to fathom the hurt we can put on others. I think you moving on and putting the past behind is awesome, I just hope you have no regrets.

Aurora said...

Precious was incredibly sad. And what made it so is that it IS obviously true - and not just for her, but for so many others as well.
Her Mother was just like mine, and it is sick and disgusting, that level of self-centered indifference, that willingness to cause pain with such shieded insouciance.
White or black or yellow or red -- purposely done passive-agggressive ignorance is repugnant.
Precious had an amazing spark to her. Thank goodness she had such a fabulous teacher who cared, and the opportunity to have some kindness and glimpse of hope in her life.
Realistically, with 2 kids... I wouldn't say her chnaces were good, regardless. But if she never ended up being cruel to HER children, she will have achieved a milestone, being different than the monster who raised her.

That corgi :) said...

I need to see Precious; I have heard good things about it. I hope you have a good Fourth Mark!!!

betty

Jonthy, Alice the uppity white cat's babysitter said...

Happy 4th of July Mark.

mac said...

Ha !
I love that line at the end :-)

Happy 4th !

Beth said...

That's one I need to see. I'm glad you enjoyed it and found truth in it.

mrs. miss alaineus said...

one of my kids told us her mom took her to see precious so the mom could prove to her she wasn't a bad mother....or at least as bad as the one in the movie.

i teared up when i saw the previews, i already feel like i can never do enough to save the rest of the kids who live in conditions similar to that or worse. i know i can't stop trying though.

take care of yourself in this heat and if i remember correctly omaha is as hot as this or hotter and colder/ more snow in the winter. as if anything could be worse than michigan weather????

xxalainaxx