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Archive for February, 2010

Fluffers

Governor David Paterson visited the Upper Room AIDS Ministry when the only promising HIV medication was AZT. The Helen Keller of the election process was part of a black political posse, led by Harlem Congressman Charlie Rangel, who, in the sense of community organizing and disbursing ear-marked funding, inspected the organization I worked for. The proud sons and daughters of congressional re-districting came to evaluate services being offered in the black community for homeless people suffering from AIDS.

Published social work veteran, black queen, and child welfare specialist Willis Green, Jr., LCSW, was running the place at the time and had hired me, a pretty white boy, as his first defense in moments such as the day when David Paterson and Charlie Rangel were led blindly into the workplace– along with at least a half dozen other, well-dressed, fast-talking, Al Sharpton knock-offs.

The power players were in a rush to see the sanctuary that a press release had so eloquently described. The Upper Room, in an effort to attract more city funding, promised the politicians an award at the Schomberg Center for Research in Black Culture during a special event featuring dance icon, Carmen de Lavallade, who had agreed, thanks to a few connections I had, to come out of retirement at 70, and dance for the sick at the Upper Room.

It didn’t hurt, when I wrote that press release, that seasoned black superstars like Rube Dee and Ossie Davis had personally donated money to the Upper Room, long before I worked there, back when Melba Moore was still singing in the name of a good-cause for her neighbors in Harlem. Putting a name like the late Willis Green, Jr. after my sentences, behind such endorsements as Dee, Davis and de Lavallade, caused the power of my pen to soar to unknown places high-up in government.

I used my connections in the entertainment industry when writing that press release. It was my job to put together a fundraiser and not only find potential funders, but also to secure the participation of people who would make other people in Harlem want to donate money for a ‘good cause. I found my to the dance diva through my lover at the time, Frank West. When Charlie Rangel learned that Carmen de Lavallade was going to perform again in Harlem, the many-term congressman led the little people in city and state government to the inside chambers of the Upper Room.

It was a time before mass e-mailing, when fax machines were like newspapers, back when it was possible to be a writer with a punch. I went the extra mile and made follow-up calls to the offices where my faxes went, to ensure speedy delivery. 

What the entourage of “minority” assembly and city council members thought in their busy political minds as they saw what was up with AIDS in Harlem is anyone’s guess. It must have seemed like just another day playing saint at some religiously–based, church going, praise ye non-profit dollar scam company. This one was called what? Oh yes, The Upper Room.

We put on a show in the office that day!

An effeminate white sissy answered the door when they drove up in tinted window cars. I shook all their hands, pretending to be like a Hollywood agent with artsy sophistication. I escorted the elected down the dusty hallway of our facility. I swished my way with them at my heels, into a little carpeted office where our skinny Executive Director, Willis Green, Jr. was still sitting behind a mahogany desk with a tacky silver contraption made of strings and swinging balls which, thankfully, was not in motion. Willis’ fancy new executive game had been placed like a prescription pad next to a fancy stapler that in the course of six years was punched less than one hundred times.

We never really believed they would all show up, and the little round mahogany desk with matching leather padded seats was not enough space for so many reaching arms of government. The desk and matching chairs were purchased at non-negotiated catalog rates just a week before. The furniture was paid for with Division of AIDS Services contract dollars that needed to be spent on office supplies, before June 30, 1993. David Paterson stood that day, but didn’t seem to mind.

David Paterson was last in line, coming in the door that day. I’ll never forget him. He was carrying all the bags and almost forgotten by the big names that came uptown into the upper room, that day. I assumed Dave was just like me—some sucker secretary. I knew from the haphazard rolling of his eyeballs that he was blind, but didn’t know he could see just about everything until he reached his hand out first to shake mine.

It was genuine, but it seemed to me he did it because he was being ignored by the big person at the Upper Room.

What a nice politician, I realized, when later, I learned that he held office and was the son of some really powerful politician. When he became governor, I was happy for him because I know he sees what goes on behind the scenes as well as any of us. It’s terrible to see the Jewish run media secretly destroy the reputation of one who I know to have such a warm handshake.

 Has there ever been a politician who has not used their influence to help their friends or those in need? I cannot help but think that if ever I got into trouble, I could call my friend, David, the governor, while he was still in office, but like one of a million press releases, he must have forgotten me after all these years.

We all have good intentions– but a press release can lead anyone astray, and in politics, one is not immune to the deficiencies in honest journalism.

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Pigs in the Mud

It has become apparent, at least to me, that the sidewalks of New York City suck energy from the legs of pedestrians. It is easy to imagine that batteries—giant storage cells of sorts, are underground, below the subways, taking from man, his disposed kinetic energy.

It is dangerous, particularly this snowy winter, when women wear high heels. Perhaps the high heels pamper the soles pretty painted feet from this energy I feel, as a man, in heavy shoes who has to hold doors for them. The veins at the top of their glamorous feet are exposed to the salted elements, yet they strut on by like runway models, the spikes of their high-heeled shoes digging into patches of non-shoveled walkways, seemingly oblivious to the pain in the legs of modern man. Like rubber sneakers or the tires on a bicycle that protect children playing in wide, flat open spaces during summer afternoon thunderstorm, Prada pumps shelter the wear on the legs of women from a draining sensation that one can only attribute to some type of electrical or gamma radical, bitchy pull.

There is something under us and in those women. A movement that is like spirit– a sucking sensation of sorts that is invisible to the human eye, but a peculiar sensation zapping through us that is, if written or spoken of, psychotic or gay in nature, but nonetheless, a reality in this crazy whore town.

This sadness and outright bitchiness that we all hide under bubble coats in the winter is a mere disguise of what our lives have been reduced to while being out and about– tweeting or an important, incoming ring tone that drowns the flair of beeping tax cabs, has not always been a part of the aura of what is the old, gentle spirit of true New York.

It was only after the towers came down that this feeling surfaced– just when internet cafes were popping up everywhere– on every corner– those little nooks where one still can have a two- dollar cup of coffee and free access to those cancer causing wireless beams that are what I believe, the cause of this bitchy sensation affecting the inner ear canals of the millions who live, commute and communicate here. It is a constant humming song that only dogs, New Yorkers, and crazy people sometimes hear. I’m so sure that all this wireless communication is causing an onset of some new sin in all of us, because when I pass people on the sidewalk on their little machines, I feel an energy pass through me and that energy is so irritating!

It’s not far-fetched to hypothesize that modern science has evolved enough to borrow from pushy shoppers, street walkers and typical business people, the power that is needed to keep the city safe and aglow, and we here, going on with typical day huff and puff and self importance fail to realize we are being drained and all that energy is being shipped to tanks in China where one day, we’ll have to pay them for it.

We have become little hydro electric dams and unbeknownst human windmills as we spin on in a rush about our business, in high heels, in winter. A few news reports have gathered the facts and presented to society the risks associated with cell phone cancer, yet we are too busy yapping to care. Don’t say I didn’t warn you about what would cause humans in the future to be born two-headed!

There have been so many tragedies on the sidewalks of New York over metal manhole covers in recent years. I attribute this deadly phenomenon to the electricity we carry in our purses. At least a dozen citizens of this great city and a few of our beloved dogs have been killed by electrical shocks from Con Edison manholes over the past half decade. And from what exactly does this electrical charges originate? one must ask as they pray and walk by in non-rubber shoes over such deadly pitfalls!

Perhaps these deadly electrical shocks are mere glitches in hidden anti-terrorism mechanisms all around and under us. These FBI funded, hidden airport like contraptions that need our energy to run, are in a sense, like hidden cameras, beaming through us with thought-controlling nature. Maybe I’m the only one smart enough to feel it. Who could doubt one of the many gifted Chinese foreign exchange students who populate Columbia University like the plague came up with technology that not only monitors everything, but is energetically, and for the benefit of mankind, self-sufficient in nature?

When scientific calculators evolved from simple, nine-volt battery powered, I-Pad sized contraptions in the 1970’s to solar powered hand-held devices in the early ‘80’s, no one could fathom how invisible sunlight kept such complex networks of tiny wires functioning flawlessly, yet, science evolved over time, and so did man, until eventually, solar powered calculators became the standard and eventually they too turned obsolete, for with the introduction of Excel spreadsheets and the internet, the task of simple addition and subtraction became commonplace, until eventually, no one cared what the square root of six hundred and sixty-six is, even if one could figure it out for free with a tiny machine and the power of the sun.

As for me– I’ll be wearing these rubber boots that I’ve had for years this winter. The shit is getting deep. I rarely brought these heavy clod-hoppers out of the closet because we never had so much snow– and so much cooling down– and the disappearance of strange sensations in my ears when I walk, invisibly through the bad energy here, like the bitches in high-heels do.

They were a gift– the shoes– from a friend who worked at the Armani Exchange on the Upper West Side, back before Nine Eleven when we were all so rich. Five hundred dollars was so much for what seemed like shoes to heavy to wear, but it was a nice thought for him to bring them home from work, for free. And they turn so many heads down.

The shoe prints in the snow of New York that look like football player cleat marks in the mud are mine. The girls—they leave just one spike mark. But notice the swish in my stride this winter– I’ve left behind a track of contagious restless leg syndrome that one can never truly out run, at least when one is still plugged in to this aura of out- stepping bad winter attitude, walking the invisible line.

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Move Over

Payday is but a week away at my new job. President’s Day is observed there. A three day weekend is all I see, and finally, a steady income begins again.

It’s time to move to a new apartment. The only thing better than a new job, is a fresh place to run home to. Everywhere in Brooklyn, hardware store purchased orange and black ‘FOR RENT’ signs adorn the tall, streak-free windows of brownstones and wooden houses that are so common here.

For years, the only way to find a new apartment in New York City was through an expensive real estate agent. Landlords could afford to be choosy, and often, they demanded high credit scores. Now, credit scores are like big banks.

I’ve been living in a dump for far too long. The days of real estate brokers are gone, and again, it pays to rent, not to own.

The ‘college graduates’ who took over this town during the Clinton Administration—the lefty, educated elite making six figures have been moving out of popular, pricey neighborhoods like Brooklyn Heights and Park Slope. I see them everywhere I go—movers—those getting out of here because without six figures, New York is really not worth it.

Get out! Run home to that little town in middle-America; for without a job, you’ll not survive, much longer than a year here.

Your place is mine! Leave the keys in the door. I got a job and get paid for President’s Day.

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