But who do i change for?

[i dedicate this post to those who are able to find small amounts of light in the dark world they’ve built with the help of one other person. and that light is enough to make that a seemingly happy home]

[Sasquatch, Godzilla, King Kong, Lochness, Goblin, Ghoul, a zombie with no conscience] everybody knows I’m a motherf*cking monster. Or at least this is what they’ve made me out to be when I am not able to meet their expectations. A heartless bloodsucker, I am in their head. But who do I change for?

I sometimes wish I was like everybody else. The air on my planet is too thin, and I’m usually out of breath, and my brain doesn’t function properly at all times. Oh! i say all that to say this: I wish I was like everybody else when it comes to intimate relationships. I’m not, though, and sometimes it really f*cks things up. I want to be like that friend I lost a couple of months ago who believed so much in his failing relationship that a sacrifice had to be made. I want to be like my sister who ignores better advice, and recently got engaged to a guy who she must know is a failure in every sense of the word. Or even like my brother who ignored all the bad things, focused on her one good, and “put a ring on it.” [going to the bathroom to drink something poisonous. can’t believe i quoted that]. But I’m not like any of them.

I am that guy that enters the relationship putting as much on the table as possible, or at least all I know about myself, and hope to grow from there, however possible. I believe in happiness above all else, and as long as we’re happy, I think we’re good, and I do my damnedest to make that happiness happens, feel me? But my damnedest does not include sacrificing myself. This “self” I’ve spent a lifetime building is the self that I’ve been in an on again/off again relationship with as far back as my memory will allow me to go, and though we’re constantly changing, some changes requested are not made immediately. [that was a mouthful, and i don’t feel like reading over it to see if it makes sense, so i hope it does]

I think my exes have formed a group on facebook or twitter or in some alley, and they’ve written up a script to hand to the next ex. It’s all the same after the courtship:

1. “I just want you to be a little bit different”

They’ve all wanted me:

1. to care more [when i’ve repeatedly had to tell them i care as much as one could].
2. to show more affection [when i’ve told them in the beginning how affectionate i am]
3. to incorporate them into my life a lot more [when they know why there are places they’ll never go with me, and people they will never meet – because i stated this in the beginning]
4. to be that ex they wish they never left who, through stories told to me during tough time, sounds like a guy and makes me question why they really left their last relationship.
5. to change.

Somewhere along the way, while writing this, I lost a few thoughts. Maybe this next sentence will get me back on track:

The funny thing is I can be everything they’ve all wanted me to be, easily. You know the giraffe used to have a short neck, right? [smart folk line] I can be all those things. I can hold your hand while walking down the street if you want me to. I can take you everywhere I go, and smile while you’re there shaking hands and making plans like me. I can be everything your ex was. In exchange, though, you’d have to want to be with a disingenuous person who will eventually lose himself somewhere in that realm.

I am not a chaser, so I will never call your bluff. If you don’t want to leave, don’t bring it up. I am not in the business of keeping folks that don’t want to be kept. If it flips, and I say I want to leave, there is absolutely nothing that could change my mind.

Wait…No…Yeah. I can be that perfect person for you, and if science and bullsh*t is correct, it shouldn’t take but a few days for me and “self” to get used to our new life of lies, and anti-authenticity. So let’s give it a shot. Let me not be that person you fell for, and be the person you hoped I’d become after a few cooked meals and fancy evenings.

But who do I lose myself for?

I don’t want to be the monster, so I’ve never intentionally worn the mask. Makes no sense to be that. I’ve been me. The best me I’m able to put into the eye of those who behold, but what they’ve all said is “that you isn’t good enough. I know that’s the you I fell for, but it’s not the you I want to be with.” So the mask remains. One day, though, I won’t be so ugly.

funny almost random fact about me: i’m a gift and curse. after me, the next dude they meet – they marry. either i’m that bad, or i was their last true thrill before a life of boredom. yeah…i’ve met the dudes…boring.

“maybe one day we’ll meet ppl where it wont be so complicated” – R. M. (J-to-the)

i found her.

The last time I seen my older sister was 1994 in a Foot LockerĀ®. The last 11 years, between classes, on breaks, and while vacaying in various spots, I searched for her. Tonight I found her. It’s impossible to describe this feeling, but i’m going to try, sacrificing chronological order, sense, and a few other things:

i’ve called the same 540 (area code) number for the last five years, listening to some strange woman on the other end finally tell me a month ago: “honey, you call here at this time every year. let me see if i know someone who knows her and call you back.” she didn’t know anyone.

i’ve check facebook and myspace weekly, hoping she fell into the trap so many of us did, but she hasn’t. or perhaps, like me, she changed her name so it’d be hard to find.

randomly i was checking the obituaries in 2007 and sadly came across her mom’s. her last name was different because she was now married. maybe i can find her this way, i thought. damnit, no luck. so i kept going. exhausted, and close to giving up, i kept on going. there’s a quote i once taped to my wall that said something like:

[when you’ve done all you can, and you can’t go any further – go one more mile]

so i kept pushing, doing the same things i’ve been doing: checking sites, calling numbers, and asking a father who wasn’t/isn’t too close to either of us due to whatever circumstances reagan and the first bush made him face.

two months ago, though, my friend told me she found a bunch of my information on a site called Spokeo.com. i laughed, and called her a liar, then went to the site, and saw it all for myself. if i was on there, maybe my sister was, too. i checked. BAM! she was. but there were five addresses under her name, and that ONE phone number i’ve been calling. me in LA and her in staunton, virginia (only 45 minutes from my hometown). i can’t get to these addresses to knock nervously.

i’m east because i needed to see my mom and grandma. hugs are needed, even for superman.

it rained today (wednesday march 9, 2011) and i almost went to DC to get my birth certificate and a few other things, and smile with a few friends. but some little man danced around my brain saying “go to staunton and just check out the addresses.” i took my cousin who was conveniently off from work, and bold enough to speak to the strangers who may open the door.

house house house house. no no no no.

the fifth house came. and nothing on the porch, yard, mailbox said anything about the girl i knew in the early 90’s.
we knocked anyway, trying to keep the hair from messing up my cousin’s weave.
knock knock.

—–

the woman: yes?

my cousin: we’re looking for my cousin, tomika, and this is the last address that’s listed for her. but this probably isn’t it, huh?

me: she’s my sister, and i havent seen her since 1994, and i we’ve knocked on four other doors before this, and this is the last on the list.

the woman: no, she doesn’t live here. but she is married to my son, and they don’t live too far. you want me to call her?

—–

i drove. we knocked. she opened and we hugged. hugged. hugged. and laughed for hours. nephew.

and to describe this feeling is damn near impossible. it’s like cotton candy on a rainy day. that’s the best i can do.

passing down welfare like heart disease

What should we do about the welfare system? Somewhere between eating Focus HopeĀ® cereal and trading books of food stamps for real money, fifty cent on the dollar, in Detroit in the early 90’s and today my thoughts have shifted. It wouldn’t have taken much convincing to get me to carry a picket sign in the name of tax free food during the first Bush’s administration and part of Clinton’s. Now, it’d take the threat of death to keep me from the front lines begging the higher-ups to destroy it. I don’t care enough about it to die for this cause.

Like diabetes and heart disease, welfare has found a place in families, being passed down generation to generation, each taking more advantage than the last. Children born into this system are taught the system, then taught how to “cheat” the system. There is no cheating this welfare system. Those who brag about how they are “getting over,” are saying nothing less than “the government is sending me more money than i deserve, and all I have to do is allow them to make it look as though I am incapable of providing adequate health care, nutrition and resources for my family.” For the most part, however, they are incapable, and not seeking the knowledge that will make them capable of providing such things.

I can’t clap loud enough at this trick the devil (the government) has played. The 20,000 people line in Atlanta last year, all hoping to recieve government assisted housing, was a perfect way to kill many racoons with one shotgun.
1. Make them feel like they need us.
2. Give them all the help they need. Maybe even go overboard, making them feel good about receiving our help.
3. Make them actively seek work, knowing the best thing they’ll get with their education is fast food. Now here’s the trick: if they receive too much (roughly $9/hr) on the job, they will be cut from our system. Let’s see if they can feed those children on $9/hr, and provide them with health care.
4. KEEP THEM ON THE LEASH A LITTLE WHILE LONGER.

Cut the welfare system. While I do not deny the fact that there is a very small percentage of people who may need it, I can without a doubt say that all those I know who currently receive government assistance do not need it. Pull it, and watch them do what we all must do when thrown against a wall: survive. They’ll be okay. Those children they decided to raise in chattel slavery, as they have been, instead of terminating pregnancy or doing what Margaret Garner did for her beloved daughter.

No matter the race, the welfare system paints a negative image of all those using it. Flipping the tables a bit, it is no secret how I feel about the government, and this piece of handout they disguise as help is perhaps in my top three on my list of “things that make me hate parts of the government.”

But hey, it’s 3:15am and I’m listening to Portishead, so this whole thing may have made absolutely no sense. ahh well. Just let me conclude with this: cut off welfare.

a bag or two: (the luggage we tote – to her in ’05)

(photo by: kwesi abbensetts)

remember how sexy we thought it was when you walked naked from our bed to our closet and put on my clothes to keep you warm
you’d find all the spots i sprayed with some cologne i bragged about to all the street motherfuckers that knew nothing about smelling important
today you found your own coat that i never touched smelled and can’t remember seeing
we fucked briefly beneath covers
and neither of us felt the need to justify the swiftness
we took it for what it was
it being noon and all
you being in the middle of some very important work
and me lying saying there is a world that needs to be saved
i gave up on the world before college graduation the first time
purely powerful animalistic us is now nothing more than two people in a room sharing more than they should at this point
it’s been over for quite some time
i’m just glad you found the strength to open that heavy ass bag you keep in our closet and dawn your own shirt this time
your shit looks better on you, baby