18 February 2009

beautiful struggles

now i know i said i haven't been really able to post lately for various reasons, and those reasons will change soon, but i just had to share this. quickly.

i was listening to fresh air while doing some necessary chores. um, like laundry before i have to buy new clothes, if you catch my drift. i was also recently sick, for the first time in a long time, it didn't go away in a day or so. this one felt like i swallowed dry sand, and actually i sounded like it too. i assure you, i did no such thing. that i'm aware of. and i sweated in the sheets, something i NEVER do, so i have to do those too for my sanity. i sincerely apologize for the TMI. but forgive me, i believe it's because i haven't really been able to communicate with people in the real world due to being bed ridden and voice stricken.

anyway...in listening to fresh air, something i don't really do too much of because, and i know i'm a minority in this (what else is new), is that i'm just not the biggest fan of terry gross. but fresh air happened to be on for background during the all important sorting process. i started listening to the first interview, and it was interesting, but i was only 1/4th interested. getting the chores done was more important to me.

then probably one of the best interviews i've heard in a long time, if not ever, came on. it was with an author of a man who wrote a memoir (can anyone who has seen "burn after reading" NOT think of john malkovich's character when coming into contact with that word?) based on his life growing up with a father who used to be a black panther.

i'm old enough to know i know a little bit about a little bit of stuff (as opposed to teenagers, for example), and i know just a teeny bit of black panther history. not too much, mainly the american folklore (of which i have personally dismissed after some critical thinking), in addition to the little bit more where it overlaps with other american civil rights struggles with which i have a tangible connection. i could go on about it, but i'll stop as this post is already getting longer that i originally intended.

so the author of the memoir is ta-nehisi coates, and wow. that man gives a fantastic interview. i thought this interview would also be in one ear and out the other, and i found myself not wanting to leave my room to put the clothes in the washer just to listen to it. thankfully, i have a device that allows me to listen to public radio on the fly, so i actually activated it, so i could do what i needed to do while listening to the interview.

and i guess it was rather moving to me in that he has a similar background to me, in that he had activist parents, went to a place where he found people like him, who didn't make fun of his name or the fact that he liked to read books. that he is black, i am brown. he was taught about his culture through books, i was taught about mine through art. i don't know, i wish i was able to do better justice to this interview, but my time is short.

i knew it was a big hit with me when he shared a moment about how his mom disciplined him. i am not a parent, but eventually i would love to have a little mini me, and, like most people who want one too, i often wonder how to broach difficult topics with my future M-M. so hearing of new ways to parent are interesting to me. he described one that rocked my potential future-in-parenting's world.

if you have the time, i believe the interview is a fascinating view on minorities growing up and finding higher education despite working class struggles. he's articulate, concise and i couldn't get enough of it. i believe i'll be googling him in a couple of weeks.

needless to say, i'll be looking for his memoir, the beautiful struggle, in the liberry very soon. when i have time to breathe.

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