Friday, December 30, 2005
5-4-3-2-1... HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
should old acquaintence be forgot... or at least forgiven in the new year!!!
well, we made it... another year and hopefully we are all wiser; learned all of the lessons of 2005 well enough that we won't have to experience them again. as per my usual, i am writing out my goals for the new year. and i will be better this time (i promise myself) so that by december next year, i won't do my annual scramble in the last 30 days to complete the list of things i failed to do in the eleven months prior. (i am wiser now... right?) admittedly, many of the goals are similar, if not identical to last year's. lose 10 pounds (guess i didn't learn that lesson well enough). read more. create better habits (well, i think i did this one but i also acquired a few new habits that i will have to unlearn this year... hence... lose 10 pounds... again.) save more, spend less. exercise more. curse less (unless it REALLY hurts). love myself, and anyone in an arm's length radius of my heart, impeccably. play with my children more. yell less. (they are going to need to help me out a bit on that one.) compliment people more. self-depricate less. BLOG MORE (we'll see, though i hope you will check in now and again as my PLAN is to write once a week... hmmm...) write, write, write... and did i say write? overall, i can at the least very exhale as i survived the year, which is a triumph in itself considering "we were never meant to survive" anyway, per audre lorde. so i am moving into 2006 one breath, one moment at a time. present and focused. with faith and belief. with laughter. with engines on full blast. it's about time, right?
with no sweetie bubu around to kiss when the clock strikes 2006, the girlz and i have yet to figure out what we are going to do for our new year's eve celebration. i am certain, however, that plenty inhibriants and dancing will be involved. hopefully no dick clark or BET, which would mean we are in the house and missing out on putting on our flyest gear, strolling on 6th in weather far too warm for december, and enjoying what it means to be alive. okay, not that you can't do that in a house coat, in front of the tv with a beer and a bowl of popcorn because sometimes, that's what being alive means in the moment... i'm just saying.
my life filled up this past year with a lot of new wonderful, beautiful new friends (big love to all and to chrysalis). but i feel like i lost a few, too, which pains my heart. or, maybe they aren't lost but they have certainly transitioned for reasons i am not in touch with in the moment of this writing. but i pray they have forgiving hearts for whatever failings i've had in our friendships as i continue to love them through their imperfections as well. i am merciful with myself and patient; prayerful that when our paths cross again, it will be love all the same. i am breathing through it all.
so my beauti-mous, wonder-licious peoples, i bid you and 2005 adieu. i wish you well in 2006. may you find love, wisdom and joy in every moment.
abrazos y besos,
Friday, December 23, 2005
do you remember where you where when you first heard luther’s “a house is not a home”? we were living in columbus, ohio. i must have been eleven or twelve. i’m not sure if it was the first time i’d heard the song but it was, if nothing else, the first time i was affected by it; the first time i made sense of “a chair is still a chair, even when there’s no one sitting there.” it was the first time i didn’t’ say, “of course it is still a chair, silly." or, “a chair could never be a house… and a house is a home, isn’t it?” it was the year of my first real crush on a saddle shoe wearing, curly headed, green-eyed boy nicknamed tiger. it was the year of my first heartbreak because he liked michelle hayes and not me. “and when it ends, it ends in tears…”
i think that song would definitely make the score to the soundtrack of my life. we all have one. you know, the compilation of all of the songs through the years that drove you, inspired you, helped you survive to this point. and i am sure in hindsight that some of the songs may have changed because our pasts have all become fiction anyway, right? but my score is to the movie that is my life as i remember it. as i would tell it. hmmm… what would your life’s soundtrack look like? better yet, or at least more accessibly, what would your current theme song be? in this moment, what comes to mind for me is musiq soulchild’s “love.”
so many people use your name in vain
those who have faith in you sometimes go astray
through all the ups and down’s the joy and hurt
for better or worse
I still will chose you first…”
last night mere, gizzy, smiles and i hit tangerines where a band called all u need played the hell outta some luther songs in commemoration. ( dre… lawd, lawd lawd, that child can sang!) then, cut creator took us home with his usual masterful blend of old/new skool beats. i must have lost 5 pounds. everytime i thought i was going to rest, he played something else that demanded my rump be shakin’ to it. (weeks like the ones i’ve had recently will make you need to dance.) anyway, i am nearly whispering due to over-singing last night. i mean… michael jackson (pyt), frankie beverly and maze (before i let go), and a host of others i fail to remember in the wake of tequila sunrise… songs that require your most passionate expression, be it in the voice or in the body. But the really good songs, good lyrics, make your body move reflexively, right?
where does your mind/your body go when you hear…
dig if you will the picture…
she’s a brick… house…
aaaaaa, love to love ya baby…
lovin’ you is easy cuz your beautiful, and makin’ love with you, is all i wanna do…
tell me somethin’ good… tell me that you love me, yeah…
doin’ the butt…
i wanna rock with you, all night… dance you into the sun light…
what’s my dj’s name? cut creator!
i said a-hip, a-hop, a-hibby to the hibbidy, hip hip a hoppa you don’t stop the rocka to the bang bang boogie say up jump the boogie to the rhythm of the boogie-da-be…
(you feel me?)
okay, maybe not great lyrics from all of the above but more than catchy tunes, wouldn’t you say? “the butt” inspired a whole ass shaken movement right? and not sexual movement. just appreciation of something that is signature for many of us.
i am enamored with songs (poems set to music). maybe i’ll write one someday tough i fear our limited vocabulary never fully expresses what i am really feeling, ya know. to minimize expression to verbal or written language only is a slight to the dynamism of being human. and at the same time, if we are present, words can sometimes speak worlds.
new years 2005, i sent to my beloveds the quote that follows; lyrics i first encountered in the e-signature of the brilliantly beautiful poet suheir hammad. i have tried to find something to replace them but
i can’t shake them. in fact, i don’t want to. they speak so well of all of the good i wish for anyone who reads this. if i did write a song for my beautiful, inspired and inspiring readers, as we leave the “joy and pain, sunshine and rain” of 2005, it could not be better stated than this…
"i wish you flowers, sunshine, and smiles. i wish you children that grow to make you proud. i wish(thank you bill)
you pretty things to wear, sweet things to smell. i wish you good friends that
always treat you fair. want to wish you ribbons to tie around your hair. i wish
you truckloads of cheer, many happy years. want to wish you freedom to do all
the things you love. want to wish you blessings and kindness from above. want to
wish you sunlight through the clouds. hope you laugh out loud. i wish you
well." --bill withers.
mucho abrazos y besos
love and love and more love,
shia shabazz (fa-evah, fa-evah-evah, fa-evah-evah…)
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
i keep trying to post pics of me in my profile, so we'll see if this one works. (if not, i got a bone ta pick wit dat girl from jamaica... jameri! this pic is from the graduation ceremony at my beloved Cave Canem.
oh! and i guess i can do a quick update... i'm FINALLY DIVORCED... (again)! for those of you just tuning in, i thought the deed was done in july, only for it to be revoked and retried and... ahhhh... I'm exhaling again. and please don't get it twisted. this joy is about the rigor of the last year. sure i believe in marriage and that it can work when the right two souls meet. i have two of the most beautiful children you will ever meet and i believe i am absolutely a better person because if the years i spent in my marriage. but everything has it's time and space in the universe. for now, for this time... this space... suffice it to say that i feel like diana ross as dorothy in "the wiz" when she and michael jackson first start down the yellow brick road. remember her skip... how her arms flailed above her head? that's me right now. a girlfriend of mine and i laugh and quote andre 3000 ('fa-evah, fa-evah-evah, fa-evah-evah?!?!") yes, this time it's forever! i am free to unapologetically be ME! and all is right with the world again. i am glad to have closure before the start of the new year.
rounding out last week, i completed 2 submissions... one for Borderlands Poetry Journal and the other for the Tribeca All Access Film Program. last year, my screenplay MARMALADE, landed a finalist position. prayers and good energy into the universe for this year's entry, AWAKENING APRIL. stay tuned...
abrazos y besos,
shia SHABAZZ ... fa-evah, fa-evah-evah, fa-evah-evah!!!
Manda-Manda tagged me so here goes...
3 screen names I have:
3 physical things I like about myself:
my large eyes (and my lengthy lashes)
my smile (mostly due to my large 2 front teeth)
my ability to love (i love well... any no i don't mean sex, people!)
3 physical things I don't like about myself:
my veiny hands
3 parts of my heritage:
3 of my everyday essentials:
salihah-and-naim-alicious kisses (kisses from my children)
coffee (thanks to my Nana)
3 of my favorite musicians:
(well, the first ones that came to mind, currently in my cd player are...)
Legally Blynd ( may not know now, but you will soon)
3 things I want in a relationship:
I would NEVER do that
no, I wasn’t going to eat that
I’d love to read at your event for free
3 of my hobbies right now:
karaoke (where no one knows me)
3 things I want to do really badly now (with a special someone):
3 careers I've considered doing:
dancer (jazz/african/hip hop... not POLE!)
3 places I would like to go on vacation to:
anywhere in south or central america
3 kid's names I like:
3 ways that I'm a stereotypical dude/lady:
i talk on the phone too much
i cry too much
i care too much about what other people think
3 people I would like to see take this quiz:
Monday, November 28, 2005
my last bike ride was on thanksgiving morning. i rode to the alberston’s grocery store around the corner, just beyond the freeway, to grab the turkey i principally refused to buy at super target. i also picked up a cabernet sauvignon and a chardonnay, one large and one small foil baking pan (for the turkey and the macaroni & cheese, respectively), and a few other last minute things, loaded them into my backpack and the 2 plastic bags on my handle bars and peddled home like i was in a real city. as usual, i rode up the slight incline just behind my stairwell and let the bike coast down the small hill into its usual spot in the cubby underneath the stairs, then spent the rest of the day in my 2nd floor apartment--cooking, cleaning, preparing for guests, hosting and being thankful for it all. after awakening from a 2-day food/family/movie coma on saturday, my son asked if he could show his visiting uncle how well he had mastered racing in, out and around the cul-de-sac on his new bike. that’s when we realized... his bike and my mountain bike had been stolen.
it felt like such a violation. and the way i was feeling when i realized the theft… let’s just say he/she who feels a few bucks richer from their pawn sale or 2 christmas presents closer to completing gift lists should be most thankful this holiday that i didn't catch him/her in the act. (people still steal things? haven’t we evolved as a species?) i mean, sure… i stole a pair of earrings from macy’s when i was 14 (sorry you had to find out this way, daddy). i’ve claimed "reparations" on the mechanical pencils or the papermate pens i’ve gotten from work. but bike stealing? i feel so disillusioned by my own quest for better personhood. you know… connectivity with my fellow wo/man. this violation after an entire weekend’s worth of discussion about faith in humanity, quantum physics (which i am completely intrigued by now) and karma. i mean, all you have to do these days is into the radio for a quick lesson (thank you alicia keys). i can't help but wonder what karmic repercussion is this for me? what payback from the universe is this? i had better get to work on repairing any fissures in my own karmic fabric, just in case. no more papermates and pencils for me? (had i taken that many?) at the same time, i am also trying to swallow/exhale… it’s just a bike.
and then there is the play button in my head i keep searching for so that i can hear, in my own words, all of the lectures i have prepared or doled out to my children about people being fundamentally good and how desperation pushes people to desperate measures (i.e., “looters” in new orleans). or the lecture about leading by example… that’s a good one. how about the one that talks about having mercy on people who don’t know how to be any better than they are. that’s the one i’m searching for in my mental archives.
the interesting thing was that my son, who at six is fit-prone and learning to reroute his anger/frustration about my separation and divorce from his dad, didn’t skip a beat. at the realization that his new bike had been stolen, he said, “that’s okay mommy. i’ll ride my old bike.” he pulled out his old, miniature mountain bike, hopped on and huffed it in, out and around the cul-de-sac like he intended. yes, people… i am taking notes. (it's just a bike.)
other than this pain of losing, my thanksgiving was… well… wonderful. my brother and my sister-in-law (his wife) were in town, along with my other mother (who is really his mother/my dad’s second wife of three). my brother and sis-in-law are contemplating austin as their next place of residence so they took the time to house-shop. my mother found closure and healing of old, old wounds which was beautiful to witness. i got calls from several of my favorite people, hung out with some of my beautiful sistafriends and actually saw movies that had no cartoon characters or G ratings. (highly recommend: “Rent,” “What In The Bleep Do We Know,” and “Jarhead.”)
aside from that, her are a few things i am thankful for...
desire and DESIRE
did I say love?
beaucoup d’amour, mes amis…
Thursday, October 27, 2005
abrazos y besos,
I have had the privilege of invitation to work with performance artist Sekou Sundiata who is amid a residency at the University of Texas at Austin. Brilliant, wise, gentle man he is, to be as young as he is. As a part of that residency, he felt it important to work with area poets to journey with him toward completion of a forthcoming work, The American Project. we, the AMAZING collective of poets and I, have been meeting nights, from 7-10pm, mostly in intensive discussion incited by Frost’s poem, “Mending Wall,” Hughes’s “Harlem: A Dream Deferred,” and Adrienne Rich’s “Prospective Immigrants: Please Note.” What a blessing it’s been to just be with them for these days. (endless love to Shannon Bailey, Abe Louise Young, Deborah Paredez, Da'Shade Moonbeam, Enrique Cabrera, Florinda Bryant, Tony Jackson, Chris and Rene Ford.) I feel indebted to the universe (and Shannon bailey) for the opportunity. Anyway, the week will culminate in a performance of our work as it relates to the themes of our discussions.
Last night Sekou gave us this as a trigger for our writing… (finishIt’s so hard to recover my sunken cheeks from the sour of lemons I’ve been sucking in life these days. But I’m looking for a humongous pitcher, some turbinado and a wooden ladle. I am sure, if nothing else, my life is just preparing to quench itself on some tangy/sweet, cold-lemonade-on-a-Texas-summer-day kinda writing.
“in the possible future that I imagine, there is/are/will
… groves of lemon trees, fields of sugar cane and
(when life gives you lemons…)
Simultaneously, with the brilliance of this experience with Sekou et al, I have had a couple of the worst days in my recent divorce history. My soon-to-be-ex (who we'll call "Lemon Head," to protect the...?) and I can’t seem to amicably agree on the visitation schedule for our children and, being the “bad guy” I am, under the advice. hell the INSISTANCE of my lawyer, was forced to call “DEFAULT.” Unfortunately, that means our children will only see their father on Thursday evenings and stay with him every other thursday through the weekend. Lemon Head is livid about it but what else can we do? his rage has become the force behind the thing that he deems makes me less worthy than he to be the primary custodial parent for our children. can he get any more 1st grade? I mean, when the brotha doesn’t get his way, the only thing he doesn’t do is throw himself on the ground, ring his fists in the air and let out all of the air of his lungs into an earsplitting “Waaaaahhhhh!” this decision is NOT because I believe him to be a bad father. It is because the court says, “in the absence of agreement, we default.” We can’t agree, so we default. Simple as that. funny how we started out with one of the best split ups of any i’d seen before. But when the whole child support thing became a reality, well, let’s just say it got unpretty. if any of you want to see what a real custody fight looks like, live and in color, I assure you he’s promised to make this a good one. Stay tuned. The revolution will be televised. (sign me up for the march, flo!)
fasten your seatbelts y’all…
Monday, October 10, 2005
the following editorial was sent to me via email this afternoon. i feel a poem coming from it but i think my dumbfoundedness has kept it from writing itself as of yet. stay tuned until then...
What’s in a Name? Hip-hop's African Influence
By David Sylvester
I recently completed a charitable bicycle trip in Africa, riding over 7000 miles from Cairo, Egypt to Cape Town, South Africa. The trip made me the first and only African American to cross two continents on a bicycle.
I have plenty of great and fascinating stories. Many are funny, others bittersweet, some are poignant, but all are entertaining. Surprisingly one story has stood out and if it was not for the fact that I have a picture of it, many would never believe it. It is for that reason that I am sharing it with you.
I have traveled all over the world and have never seen a store by the name of "Jew Devils,” “Spic Bastards,” “Muff Divin' Dykes” or anything like that- only the store “Niggers.”
While in Lilongwe, Malawi, I came across a store by the name of "Niggers." That's right "Niggers!" The other riders, who were all White, could not wait to inform me of this to see my reaction. Initially, I thought that it was a very bad joke but when the other riders were adamant about the existence of the store, I had to see it for myself.
What I found was a store selling what the owner called 'hip hop' style clothing. It was manned by two gentlemen - one of them asleep! (Talk about living up to or in this case down to a stereotype). I asked the guys what was up with the store name. After hearing my obvious non - Malawian accent and figuring out that I was from America, the man thumped his chest proudly and said "P-Diddy New York City! We are the niggers!"
My first reaction was to laugh because many things when isolated can be very funny, but it quickly dawned on me that this was so not funny at all. It was pathetic. I did these bicycle trips across the USA and through the 'Mother -Land' in honor of one of my good friends, mentors and fellow African Americans, Kevin Bowser, who died on 9/11.
Here I am, a Black man riding across the world on his bicycle in honor of another Black man, riding 'home', and what do I see? Some Africans calling themselves Niggers. They were even so proud of it they put it on their store front to sell stuff. When I relay the story to folks back home in Philadelphia, most of them laugh too and rationalize it by saying 'well, we can say it to each other' or 'there is a difference' or even 'they just spelled it wrong. It should have been 'niggas' or 'niggah's'. Gee, like that would make a difference.
The issue is not the spelling. I was wrong. We are wrong. There is no justification for an infraction of this magnitude. The word and the sentiment behind it are flat out wrong. We have denigrated and degraded ourselves to the point that our backwards mindset has spread like a cancer and infected our source, our brothers, our sisters, our Mother Land.
I have traveled all over the world and have never seen a store by the name of "Jew Devils," “Spic Bastards,” “Muff Divin' Dykes” or anything like that- only the store “Niggers.”
I am to blame for this. Every time I said the word, I condoned it. By not correcting others or by rationalizing it, I gave it respectability. By looking the other way when others said 'hey nigga what's up', and when I purchased CDs, DVDs, T-shirts and other stuff, I enriched it. I now see the error in my ways and I am so sorry Black men and women.
The flame that we called entertainment, that was only to warm and entertain us, now engulfs us and scorches our own self esteem. If a child only knows to refer to men and women as niggers, bitches, pimps and hoes, then what is he/she to grow up thinking of themselves?
The bottom line is this: I rode over 12,000 miles on two continents through 15 states and 13 countries and broke two bikes in the process to get to a store in Africa called Niggers. I am willing to step up and admit my part in the havoc that we have wrought on our mindset but I think that we all are to blame.
I will finish with 4 things: if you don't like being called a Nigger, Bitch, Faggot, Dyke, Spic, Jew Dog, Wop, Towel Head or anything of that ilk, then think. Think before you speak those words, write those lyrics, support that rhetoric. And most of all think before you purchase! Purchasing is akin to compliance. I may like the beats and rhythms of some songs but I can not support it any more. You rappers are intelligent. Find another word to describe yourselves.
A picture is worth a thousand words. For larger view click onto http://playahata.com/images/gallery/hiphopafricaninfluence.jpg.
David Sylvester is a personal trainer, who teaches health to adults in Philadelphia. He e-mailed this story initially to 35 friends. They forwarded the e-mails, and Sylvester has received more than 300 responses, including responses from Japan since the initial e-mail on July 20. See: http://www.contribute2.org/images/david.jpg> for more.
Tuesday, October 04, 2005
|Your Seduction Style: Fantasy Lover|
You know that ideal love that each of us dreams of from childhood? That's you!
Not because you posess all of the ideal characteristics, but because you are a savvy shape shifter.
You have the uncanny ability to detect someone's particular fantasy... and make it you.
You inspire each person to be an idealist and passionate, and you make each moment memorable
Even a simple coffee date with you can be the most romantic moment of someone's life
By giving your date exactly what he or she desires, you quickly become the ideal lover.
Your abilities to make dreams come true is so strong, that you are often the love of many people's lives.
Your ex's (and even people you have simply met or been friends with) long to be yours.
No doubt you are the one others have dreamed of... your biggest challenge is finding *your* dream lover.
WOW!!! it's amazing what answering a few questions reveals about a person. I LIKE THIS ONE!!! (gon' make a sista's chest swell.) i tag jamerie to take this one! (go ahead. you know you want to.)
happy birthday to me… happy birthday to me… happy birthday dear shia... happy birthday to me!..
and to nobel peace prize winning president jimmy carter… and to the late musical genius donny hathaway…
the last several weeks have delivered a plethora of percussive punches from the universe. but when the earth is unsettled and axis-changed, and night heat feels arabian, and katrina and rita come for reclamation, i imagine no one is quite at peace. and what’s the moon doing? mercury is not in retrograde… is it? the good thing is that i am finding breath again. and i guess it is all milk for my bones anyway… the storm before the rainbow of a birthday celebration that was this last weekend.
it went a lil something like this…
on friday night, eight of my daughter’s friends came over for the a swim/slumber party she (and my son, by proxy) had organized in honor of my 35th. nothing like a room full of slightly hormonal, extremely attitudinal, possibly premenstrual eight and nine year olds and a taunting, tattling, brooding younger brother to start off your birthday. luckily, though, my birthday and participation in all activities around it was the trump card i whipped from my hip pocket to gain their cooperation whenever things got too out-of-control, which seemed more often than not.
at midnight, one of the girls realized it was officially my birthday and they all gathered around to sing to me, and give me their handmade cards and presents. for those that know me, i’m sure you could have guessed that i was a weeping mess by the end. following a fashion show, the settling of few sibling fights and the movies-on-demand showing of casper, (cuz remember, i got cable now y’all), i forced them to find sleep, despite their desire to meet the light of morning (and dashing their dreams of carrying that badge of honor to the next party… “we stayed up all night!”). by the time all of the parents came to pick them up, my daughter finally found the deep sleep that eluded her in the midst of hosting the party. she missed their goodbyes.
on saturday, my actual birthday, i went for my mani/pedi/facial appointment in the beautiful shop of my friend ola. (i can’t imagine oprah gets better treatment than what ola gave me.) from there, i floated on to the hotel where i got in a hot bath and slept off the glass(es?) of wine ola served as i basked in her pampering.
oh shit! i woke up from my chardonnay-induced slumber at 8:39pm, to realize in a panic that my birthday dinner was scheduled to start nearly 40 minutes prior at austin’s “she-she” downtown chinese bistro, pf changs… without me! i threw on the birthday outfit i’d shopped for all week and strode around the corner to join the gorgeous group of people gathered in my honor! from there, everything about the evening was perfect! the food was exquisite! my friends were simply and beautifully divine! the cherry atop this birthday sundae of perfection was that my birthday fell on saturday... and the party left pf changs to resume at my favorite nightspot, club one15... and dj cut creator was the dj of the night!!! (remember when LLcoolj asked us… “what’s my dj’s name?” and we yelled “cut creator!” yeah, well he lives in austin now and puts it down at club one15 every saturday night.) so, along with the vip section, the champagne and the delectable chocolate cake, cut creator was on the turn tables and i was on the dance floor nonstop til 2:00 when the club closed and we trooped it over to copa for first saturday salsa! by 3am, the last of us headed home and i to my hotel where i passed out in dream-filled sleep, praying i’d wake up there and that it had all been real.
this was by far the best birthday i’ve had since my 30th and i am grateful to all those who made it out to celebrate with me for making it all so unforgettable.
Monday, October 03, 2005
|Your Hidden Talent|
Friday, September 30, 2005
i want to personally thank 13 for introducing me to "blogthings" and cuss out Jameri for getting me hooked on them! so, becaus ei am completely preoccupied with my birthday coming up tomorrow, YES TOMORROW Y'ALL, and that i will be a grown and sexy 35, i am just posting blogthings in this entry. here's to getting to know me... and getting to know myself.
abrazos y besos,
|Your Personality Is|
You are a passionate, caring, and unique person.You are good at expressing yourself and sharing your ideals.
You are the most compassionate of all types and connect with others easily.Your heart tends to rule you. You can't make decisions without considering feelings.
You seek out other empathetic people to befriend.Truth and authenticity matters in your friendships.
In love, you give everything you have to relationships. You fall in love easily.
At work, you crave personal expression and meaning in your career.
With others, you communicate well. You can spend all night talking with someone.
As far as your looks go, you've likely taken the time to develop your own personal style.
On weekends, you like to be with others. Charity work is also a favorite pastime of yours.
|You Are 40% Boyish and 60% Girlish|
|You are pretty evenly split down the middle - a total eunuch.Okay, kidding about the eunuch part. But you do get along with both sexes.You reject traditional gender roles. However, you don't actively fight them.You're just you. You don't try to be what people expect you to be.|
i love the balance. but how about this...
WORD OF THE DAY! "EUNUCH"
Main Entry: eu·nuch
Pronunciation: 'yü-n&k, -nik
Etymology: Middle English eunuk, from Latin eunuchus, from Greek eunouchos, from eunE bed + echein to have, have charge of -- more at SCHEME
1 : a castrated man placed in charge of a harem or employed as a chamberlain in a palace
2 : a man or boy deprived of the testes or external genitals
3 : one that lacks virility or power
|Your Blog Should Be Purple|
Does that mean i am a selfish blogger? but i was close about the color thing!
|You're an Passionate Kisser|
kisses are poetry.
|You Are 22 Years Old|
13-19: You are a teenager at heart. You question authority and are still trying to find your place in this world.
20-29: You are a twentysomething at heart. You feel excited about what's to come... love, work, and new experiences.
30-39: You are a thirtysomething at heart. You've had a taste of success and true love, but you want more!
40+: You are a mature adult. You've been through most of the ups and downs of life already. Now you get to sit back and relax.
Now, how's that for 35!
all for now beautiful people!
Tuesday, September 27, 2005
and kiss me on my neck!
"...Been such a long time
I forgot that I was fine
Just kiss me on my neck
and breathe on my neck
I want somebody
to walk up behind me
And kiss me on my neck
and breathe on my neck..."
life has been overwhelmingly busy these days. my mother is settling in wonderfully, loving up the grandkids and giving me the kind of love and support middle children dream of. austin has been good to her so far, save the lack of black folks and the 100+ degree heat that sorely affects her “pressure.” not to mention subjecting her to riding in our reliable though ac-less “black beauty.” i keep trying to hold out on paying the nearly $200 they tell me it'll cost to get the ac fixed but i am relying on the hope that fall is actually coming soon. (it is september, right?) then i remembered that we are in austin. sheesh!
i am gearing up for my birthday and parties this weekend. for sweet, sweet starters, my daughter and her friends (and my son--by proxy) decided they wanted to throw me a swim/sleepover party on friday night. i am suspiciously thinking though, that it is a party for them disguised under the candles of my birthday celebration. either way, it’s very cute and extremely thoughtful of them. (i am certain my daughter has a career in production or party planning in her future. she’s been making lists for the past several days as not to forget anything.) in our pre-divorce family tradition, i, as the birthday person, will get breakfast in bed, made especially by her and her brother (and friends) on saturday morning (my actual birthday). at 11, i depart for my mani/pedi/facial appointment and begin the journey to the grown folks bash at the end of the evening. i never thought i’d be this excited about turning 35!
all for now. just checking in. i miss this space. it, for now, is the kiss on my neck that reminds me that life is fine.
Monday, September 19, 2005
FREDDIE'S DEAD! THAT'S WHAT I SAID!!!
it's so hard to say goodbye to yesterday... but not AT ALL hard to bid farewell to the raccoon who finally bit the dust in my attic, leaving behind a smell that a pack of incense, 4 scented candles and Lysol disinfectent spray can't even conquer. (they are clearing the remains in the morning and hopefully a good saging and airing out will do the trick. y'all got suggestions, i'm open!) but i am excited that we will have the apartment to ourselves again. no more waking up at midnight/2AM to its plodding from room-to-room in the attic space above my head, sounding like a busy two year old or a diminutive gimp. (the sucka was big!) no more dragging, and sliding down the vaulted ceiling, and clawing the sheet rock. soon, no more smell. soon my nights will be limited to unadulterated, uninterrupted, dream-filled sleep! and i can get on, in my blogging, about other things, y'all... cuz freddie's dead... that's what i said!!!
Sunday, September 18, 2005
Thursday, September 15, 2005
|Your Birthdate: October 1|
Thursday, September 08, 2005
for at least a week and a half now, i have been trying to articulate the source of this river of tears… the spark of this blazing anger and frustration… or the torrent of other emotions i am dealing with about the goings on in and around new orleans… my mother’s transition to my home in austin from what was left of her new orleans home… george "dubya's" response (or lack thereof) to the needs of the largely black populace suffering in the wake of katrina… and a host of other things that won't/can't/shouldn't/MUST come out... but i can't. i am neck deep in every moment of it right now and my words are still knotted in my throat, clotted in my veins, walled behind emotions obviously stronger than the retaining walls and levies that gave way to flood new orleans’s poorest neighborhoods. i have heard and read some excellent commentaries so i encourage you read those words. (click the names of people listed on my links. also my sister shared with me and my mom the open letter michael moore wrote to gw [which i've pasted below and is also available at www.michaelmoore.com]. It is witty and hilariously brilliant.)
shouts and thanks to my friends and this austin beautiful community who have been the vehicles of the many blessings my mother has received since her arrival last sunday. but my mother still weeps for the part of her that finds shelter in convention centers and stadiums around the country or the parts that wade through E. coli bacteria-filled flooded streets of new orleans. she weeps for the burden she believes she has placed on me in her coming. but what she fails to realize is that her being here is the huge pot of gold; that for my children and me, having "nana" around means more than she will ever (EVER) know.
your continued thoughts, prayers and loving support are deeply appreciated. and that's all i can manage right now.
abrazos y besos,
Friday, September 2nd, 2005
Dear Mr. Bush:
Any idea where all our helicopters are? It's Day 5 of Hurricane Katrina and thousands remain stranded in New Orleans and need to be airlifted. Where on earth could you have misplaced all our military choppers? Do you need help finding them? I once lost my car in a Sears parking lot. Man, was that a drag.
Also, any idea where all our national guard soldiers are? We could really use them right now for the type of thing they signed up to do like helping with national disasters. How come they weren't there to begin with?
Last Thursday I was in south Florida and sat outside while the eye of Hurricane Katrina passed over my head. It was only a Category 1 then but it was pretty nasty. Eleven people died and, as of today, there were still homes without power. That night the weatherman said this storm was on its way to New Orleans. That was Thursday! Did anybody tell you? I know you didn't want to interrupt your vacation and I know how you don't like to get bad news. Plus, you had fundraisers to go to and mothers of dead soldiers to ignore and smear. You sure showed her!
I especially like how, the day after the hurricane, instead of flying to Louisiana, you flew to San Diego to party with your business peeps. Don't let people criticize you for this -- after all, the hurricane was over and what the heck could you do, put your finger in the dike?
And don't listen to those who, in the coming days, will reveal how you specifically reduced the Army Corps of Engineers' budget for New Orleans this summer for the third year in a row. You just tell them that even if you hadn't cut the money to fix those levees, there weren't going to be any Army engineers to fix them anyway because you had a much more important construction job for them -- BUILDING DEMOCRACY IN IRAQ!
On Day 3, when you finally left your vacation home, I have to say I was moved by how you had your Air Force One pilot descend from the clouds as you flew over New Orleans so you could catch a quick look of the disaster. Hey, I know you couldn't stop and grab a bullhorn and stand on some rubble and act like a commander in chief. Been there done that.
There will be those who will try to politicize this tragedy and try to use it against you. Just have your people keep pointing that out. Respond to nothing. Even those pesky scientists who predicted this would happen because the water in the Gulf of Mexico is getting hotter and hotter making a storm like this inevitable. Ignore them and all their global warming Chicken Littles. There is nothing unusual about a hurricane that was so wide it would be like having one F-4 tornado that stretched from New York to Cleveland.
No, Mr. Bush, you just stay the course. It's not your fault that 30 percent of New Orleans lives in poverty or that tens of thousands had no transportation to get out of town. C'mon, they're black! I mean, it's not like this happened to Kennebunkport. Can you imagine leaving white people on their roofs for five days? Don't make me laugh! Race has nothing -- NOTHING -- to do with this!
You hang in there, Mr. Bush. Just try to find a few of our Army helicopters and send them there. Pretend the people of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast are near Tikrit.
P.S. That annoying mother, Cindy Sheehan, is no longer at your ranch. She and dozens of other relatives of the Iraqi War dead are now driving across the country, stopping in many cities along the way. Maybe you can catch up with them before they get to DC on September 21st.
Tuesday, August 30, 2005
day two and now my daughter is sick. eyes pink. throat soar. body feverish. to her chagrin, to my son's delight, we dragged ourselves to the doctor this morning for eye drops, tyenol, a throat swab to test for strep and the ultimate feel-better meds... stickers! the real prize is that MY head is beginning to congest and my temples are pulsing. i can't wait until my children are old enough to make me some chicken soup. no rest for the weary. (but at least we have cable.)
sick of feeling sick...
Monday, August 29, 2005
i have been on and off of the phone with my mother, who lives in new orleans, all night. for those worried/wondering, she left for baton rouge on saturday. she is humbled and grateful to be gone but sends (and asks that i/we all send) prayers for those in new orleans who, for whatever reason, couldn't make it out. so, if you are reading this, take a moment with me... right now... and while you're at it, pray for the world, for the days...
i am also adding to my prayers one for blogger "jameri" who was headed to jamaica with her fiance this last saturday to be married. so excuse me while i take another moment...
i am home with my sniffling son whose eyes are only slightly less red than the eye of katrina. he's suffering with pink eye and home from school today. my children are hilarious. i assured my skeptic of a son that the doctor said he didn't need to come in. but he who trusts my mothering skill but questions my judgement in this case, is still begging to go, but i am almost certain it's mostly for the post-visit sticker reward. he finally resolved that the best alternative medicine would be for me to print out shark pictures from the internet for him. not love. not kisses. not chicken soup, cough syrup, candy-tasting throat drops or echinechea, but shark pictures. hmmm...
as much as i want to blog all day, my body longs for the sleep it wasn't able to get last night. i had better catch as many naps as i can today while the raccoon trapped in the attic is sleeping. it's like having a newborn only not cute at all and not worth the hours its nocturnal ass spends interrupting my nightly sleep.
ok, i'm hooked... i'll sleep after this episode of "a different world." i had forgotten how good that show was. right now, freddie is consoling a little orphan boy who, once again, wasn't considered at the adoption fair. I LOVE CABLE! they don't make sitcoms like this anymore.
so, for now, i'm hoping professor randolf and his wife really get to adopt alex, that whitley and duane get together and that some show like this shows up again in my lifetime. fat chance though... it's a different world than when it was on before.
my son if huffing. on to the shark pictures...
Wednesday, August 24, 2005
good question. what does anything look like to anyone? i was recently in an agree-to-disagree conversation with a friend about perception. the following is very rough but it came out so i thought i'd post it since poems are so few and far between for me these days, considering the raccoons et al.
vast rippling waters
or the brilliance of sky
or a pastel sheath blooming with bouquets of cotton
the balm of basics
or the ecstatic energy of electric
it is all perception
like alabama backwater bass
and guttural hum
like dreams in bedroom eyes
like salt streaks and tissue lint on cheeks
cuz love done left again
like dizzying blue whales
blue suede shoes
it is all perception
what we see
what we get
what we think we have
we are all in process. the people watching will call our blues the shade of their own perception. gives new thought to the phrase "call it like you see it" right? where is your head when you are looking? do you wear glasses and are you wearing them when you are looking? what color are the lenses? are they shades? rose colored? are your eyes even open? are you color-blind? whatever the answers, my point is that it's all evidence that we are alive and beautiful and thinking, feeling, growing, learning, healing, wonderful beings.
life is succulent in every shade.
Monday, August 22, 2005
i've been gone a minute but now i'm back in it. miles to go 'fore i sleep though. raccoon drama (that's a whole different blog) and i'm still moving into my new digs. consider this my open invitation to you, dear reader, to the "don't-stop-get-it-get-it-up-all-night-til-the-morning-light unpacking party." it's byob so come packin. (LOL)
we survived the first week of school. my children love their teachers (phew!) and are settling in and doing well. my son lost his second tooth of the week yesterday morning and was scared to look under his pillow for the dollar bill and the 2 half dollar coins the tooth fairy (*wink, wink*) left for him. (i imagine the thought of some figment of a lilliputian person sneaking money under your pillow in exchange for your teeth MUST be weird for a six-year-old.) when i handed him the money, he smiled wide, sans the teeth necessary to fill the grin.
so, i have been meaning to write about my recent trip to cali. (august 11-15). it was amazing. there is nothing like cali weather to soothe the beasts that grow in you when you are away from it. my hair always acts right. my skin feels clearer, breathes better. (must be the smog.) my overall disposition is sunnier. ahhh, to be home again!
my flight landed in san diego just after 10pm on thursday (8/11). i went immediately to the rental car company then got on the road to la by 11:30pm. the whole way there, a half of me was thinking, what the heck am i doing? the other half was thinking, “i’m grown” and it was liberating and i was on a mission. find an agent or die trying. well, not die, but you know what i mean…
a terrycloth robe and slipper clad stephanie, groggy but glad to see me, helped me find a parking space on the street near her hollywood apartment. we circled blocks with swarms of other cars to finally squeeze into a spot occupiable only thru 8am that morning as not to interrupt the path for the weekly friday street sweeping.
steph’s the kind of friend every person wishes they had. we settled into her apartment and got right to work, going through the list of agents i would target for representation; steph offering information she knew of this company or that, and simultaneously catching each other up on life since the last time we saw each other. by the time we finally passed out, it was 4am.
later, at more tolerable waking hour of that day, i’d drag myself up to move the car and begin at least a dozen fruitless calls to agencies who don’t accept unsolicited materials. conundrum: how can you try to get representation from an agency who won’t look at your work because… get this… it’s not represented. how does that work? and when i did get the attention of an agency, i didn’t have technology working on my side. i had nowhere to fax or email a submission and none of them were game for my spontaneous drop in. (so i didn’t get to share my wonderfully composed “shia’s shameless self-promotion packet”.) i did make an invaluable connection with a sista who seemed to be doing great things with her own script, despite any hollywood generated roadblocks (shout out to jhyacinthxa [lavender flower] and “trestle glen”… check out www.blackswanentertainment.com). i also made contact with two of the production companies i am thirsty for and armed, now, with tactical approaches on getting my scripts to the right people. when one of those contacts works out (and i did say when, not if), don’t trip, my lovelies, you will know.
after a long day, a robust ration of steph’s kick ass ground turkey nachos and a much needed nap, i bid my old high school buddy adieu and headed to i-5, southbound for san diego to turn in the car that i would later discover i left my new anthony hamilton cd in. (of course the car company has no idea where it went.) anyway, my mother, auntie “mishero” and uncle ronnie picked me up, greeting me between their usual sibling rebukings and banter; my mother backseat-driving the entire way as we haphazardly found our way through the streets of san diego, back to nana and grandpas longstanding gem on the street of my childhood, jewell drive.
the rest of the weekend was a basking in the love of my maternal family and my grandparents, who only seem to get better with age. they are both slightly shorter than i remember and now don porcelains that soak in buzzing blue cleaning containers overnight than in their mouths. everything else, though, is fully intact, both still fully “well” and gorgeous. still connected, brilliant and intelligent. she’s still charming and graceful. he’s still witty and playful. they are still full of memories and a need to remind us of who we are. they are still magical.
i got to spend time with cousins i hadn’t seen in forever. it’s always interesting to reacquaint ourselves after so many years. all of us are parents now. the children and the younger cousins looked at us like we were our parents. hard to believe i am not in that generation anymore. not only can i sit at the big table but i am helping prepare the space now too. (food preparation in the williams family is reserved for my uncles who take after grandpa, a navy chef extraordinaire! he’s the resident title holder for best hotcakes and sweet potato pie with my uncles kenny and mike following his legendary status quite well. needless to say, at williams gatherings, you can always expect to eat well.!)
i think the most telling moment for me, watching them dance. there was a moment in the celebration where the floor belonged to them. it was an amalgamation reminiscent of swing, salsa, and the chicago strut that was all charles and clarina. fully in sync in a way that i have seen few other marriages these days.
before i left, i took my obligatory seat in the corner next to the same console that i used to smack dead into every time my grandfather chased our before bath naked butts through the house. ("charles... cut it out... someone's going to get hurt, charles," my nana would call after him in her voice that i have never heard above the level of a sternly dignified command. but grandpa never listened and time and time again i'd greet the console, head first.) from their home in the cubby next to the fireplace, i poured the large sack of pictures out around me and revisited my childhood on jewel drive and all of the years of "the before" and "the after" i came. it is interesting how many of the pictures of me then, look like my children now. the next time i go, i am taking salihah and naim. and i have to remind myself to take at least a handful of pictures to add to the swell so they will always know where to come to find themselves, just like i do.
abrazos y besos...
Wednesday, August 10, 2005
Five songs I'll always love:
1. a song for you - donny hathaway
2. when you call my name - frank mccomb
3. any luther song
4. diamonds and pearls - prince
5. all in love is fair - stevie wonder
*bonus Whatever, Whatever, Whatever - Jill Scott and Say Yes - Floetry..
Now - what was I doing ....10 years ago:
i was living in corvallis, oregon where the land scape was beautiful but i swear me and my (then) husband increased the black population by at least 20%. i worked for osu. i had written tens of poems but hadn't claimed "poet" at that time. so, i obviously, didn't know who i was then.
5 years ago: i was turning 30 and waking up! still married and had 2 kids by then. (so much changes in 5 years... wow!) i had a three-year-old and a one-year-old. i was overwhelmed. livin' pretty large but, like most corp. folks, creating big debt and unhappy. on one side of life, i had published a book, was on the writers league of texas board of directors, and was running several writing programs and projects/becoming "shia" again. on the other side, selling my daytime soul to my day job and living to pay bills. my marriage lost it's way. i cut my signature, VERY LONG at the time, hair all the way off and wore a fade for the first time ever. SO liberating! i remember that being a very painful/confusing/excitingly scary time because i knew change was going to come. i just wasn't sure when or how. but i knew it was necessary.
1 year ago: separated... moved out. i was empowered but scared. but i LOVED our new living (me and my children). wrote more. realized what was missing... loving ME! realized fun again. became the owner of "writer". oh! by now had written 4 screenplays, produced several short films and developed a gazillion treatments and film ideas. became screenwriter shia. owned the cave canem fellow and widely published poet shia. (shameless self promo) learned to love and nurture both. found passion. kept passion.
Yesterday: felt the pangs of merc in retrograde. tried to get settled into my new apartment but the raccoons wouldn't let me. drama, drama all day long. but i found breath in a bath and the return of my phone service. (what's a girl to do without a phone?)
Today: so far... caught up on my blog reading. managed urgent work issues. listened to thunder. wondered about how my children are. said a prayer for their safety. accepted a lunch date with my girl. sent a headshot to the printer for my L.A. trip tomorrow. got a note that my late time sheet may not get me paid til the 18th. (wha' ha' happent was... mymanagerisonvacationandmynextlevelmanagerwasoutyesterday
toprocess...whew! i hope the rest of the day is better...
ok, before i finished this, they told me i'll get paid on friday... phew! (relief). now i am contemplating neo tonight. i need it.
Tomorrow: make sure all my stuff is together for my cali trip. exhale...
5 snacks I enjoy: dark chocolate, birthday cake, chocolate or yogurt covered pretzels, bon bons, almonds with some kind of salted seasoning or unsalted whole cashews.
5 bands I know the lyrics of most of their songs: stevie wonder, luther vandross, frank mccomb, old school new edition, all michael jackson up thru thriller
5 things I would do with $100,000,000:
1. donate 5% to charity preferably a cause for feeding children, AIDS, and all activists causes relating to black people.
2. whatever my children want and set up account to grow money for them
3. invest for myself
4. buy a home with hardwood floors, aa fire place, a courtyard, maybe a pool, and a custom writing room.
5. plan and pay for vacations for me and my children for the next 10 years
5 locations to run away to: bay area (cali); anywhere caribbean and black; paris; harlem, new york; and canada
5 things I wish I could wear: a bikini (confidently); my bare skin (confidently); a belly ring without being "skerred"; dread locs (some day); and long nails, cuz i like 'em.
5 Movies: momento; mahogany; monsoon wedding; sparkle; and boomarang.
5 biggest joys at the moment: my children; feeling connected to good people and good things which, for me, equals knowing there is a God; writing (any genre, including blogging); good food, good drinks, and good conversation with those aforementioned good people; and love... gotta have love.
5 toys: blog; words; my children; my laptop; and anything in my top bedroom drawer (oops)... ok, i'm kidding... i think...
I tag jameri, kelli, steph, natasha and ... can i tag amanda too?
abrazors y besos... shia
Tuesday, August 09, 2005
so the whole idea of having cable, i now realize, is not a choice... it's a conspiracy! how about this... in my new apartment, i can't get a single channel! not even the 5 local ones in used to get with rabbit ears. so i have to pay, at the very least $39.95 for access to local channels whether i like it or not! what the...?
on another note, aside from the fact that i must have lost 20 pounds during the move, going up and down stairs, load after load, my move went very well. (i assure you that i have had little trouble gaining every pound back in these last to sedentary days at work, though.) anyhoo, various friends came over to help out when their schedules could manage. the main crew came out on saturday, late day, after the fierceness of texas heat calmed itself a bit. i made a turkey lasagna the night before and fed folks which always goes over well. or maybe it's just that when you work people hard before you feed them, they think your cooking is the best they've ever tasted. either way, folks left exhausted and full. and we devoured my version of patti labelle's best-ever banana bread, which has quickly become a staple of my household. my kids' think i should open a banana bread shop. so hard to admit it isn't my recipe. maybe i'll tell them when they're older. maybe...
it's bananas... b-a-n-a-n-a-s... Oooo... that's my sh... that's my sh...
so unfortunately, we still don't have cable. i ordered direct tv but canceled when i realized that my complex wouldn't allow them to drill a hole to hold the dish. so the only place they could plant the gaudy contraption was on an imposing tripod right in the middle of my stairwell... is there intelligent life in their universe? don't they know i have an 8 year old and a six year old who argue on their journeys up and down those stairs daily? that's an accident waiting to happen.
i hope to be fully moved in before i leave for cali on thursday. but with merc still in retro, i won't count on it.
cuz it's bananas b-a-n-a-n-a-s...
Friday, August 05, 2005
...and chaos is the word of the day. the phone company switched over my phone service 2 days early so while my new place has phone service, my old place, where I AM STILL LIVING, is phoneless. for those who know me well... what's a girl to do without a phone?
as if that isn't enough, it's raining cats and dogs, thunder storm theatrics and all. i pray it stops before the crew of friends i begged/invited over to help me move arrives. rain and hauling heavy stuff that ain't yours down... then up flights of stairs isn't nutritious OR delicious!
the good thing, that i am SO looking forward to, is being in the new apartment. after 5pm this evening, the kids will have their own floor (the 2nd floor is their room and bathroom) and the rest of the living area, including my room, is downstairs. and i LOVE my 2 accent walls (one RED in the dining area [which falls in my love and relationships bagua] and the one in my bedroom, pale green [which spralls across my skills& knowledge, career, and the other green-empowered bagua] ). yes, yes, i am creating a feng shui environment to promote success by all means necessary, man! so that even when mercury is retro, in my home, i can find peace.
prayer, y'all. prayer and umbrellas...
abrazos y besos,
Wednesday, August 03, 2005
so after long deliberation, i decided when we move into our new apartment this weekend, we are going to finally get… cable. i have been, thus far, committed to keeping my children from over-indulgence and bad habits learned from the smart-mouthed, wise-cracking, too-grown-for-their-own-good kids of disney and nickelodeon tv. don't get it twisted, they have begged for it on a regular basis because, save reading rainbow, between the lions and seinfeld, “regular” tv these days has little to offer children. they finally wore thin the skin on their knees and, over about the last 4 months, they started answering themselves for me. they ask no one in particular as they flip the 5 channels that come in clearly thanks to rabbit ears, "mommy, are we gonna get cable soon?" then, in a mimicking mommy voice, they lament, "not this month, sweetie. maybe before you're a teenager.")
they’ve lost their tolerance for toddler-tuned programming on PBS. in that last hour before bed, I admit what a treat it would be for them to watch a half hour of something THEY choose. (if they can survive the dramas of divorce, they can intellectually persevere over one episode of “that's so raven,” senses fully intact.) so, while i hope we get our money's worth, i hope the time we do spend on the couch, mind-controlled by the tube doesn't stifle the creativity we've found in all of these months without it.
i also asked myself, as i push myself forward into my next screenplay, how can an aspiring screenwriter NOT HAVE CABLE? chalk it up to the economy, being broke and my still relatively new status as head of household, trying to wisely stretch my tiny pay check over the most appropriate bills (like rent, childcare, insurance, utilities, and my monthly massage).
aside from the movies, i recently missed my younger sister on her debut as a contestant on the TLC reality show to find their 3rd member. (brandy has always been the child who takes on adventure and will try anything once. her first week in nyc at nyu, she got signed to do a billboard ad for nike. that's how her universe works. can i be brandy for a day?) anyway, i plan not to miss the rerun of the show. or another season of def poets. i can't front... i am most excited about the return of UPN (been missing "girlfriends") and bravo (inside the actor's studio is "tha bomb!") in my life. hgtv. bet. lifetime. doesn't oprah have her own channel now? documentaries and videos and movies, oh my...!
so if you don't hear from me in more than a week, send over an exorcist to cut to cable cord and tell us to step away from the light. i don't think my new apartment building is built atop a graveyard so the likelihood is that we would have become possessed by the spirits of time warner cable.