Blackhumouristpress's Blog

October 14, 2011

The Senior Free Coffee Posse

Visit any Mc Donald’s restaurant anywhere in the United States between the hours of 6am and 10am and you are likely to find busy, fortunately employed Americans, queuing up in automobiles, seeking cheap sustenance while listening to the radio, applying make up, checking text messages and email.   Underemployed young people scurry around like worker ants for the queen, gathering up processed food from caged animals, pumped up with hormones whose raison d’être is to provide cheap fuel to mass amounts of humans who ignore and disregard warnings of the effects of eating shit.

For those with a little time to sit and eat at plastic tables on top of plastic trays rather than juggle the steering wheel, Blackberry or I-phone whilst taking bites of a sausage biscuit with cheese that drips grease which falls onto paper wrappers and dress pants.  Those people with the luxury of dining conventionally at a table, will no doubt happen upon gangs of retired men who escape the company of their retired wives to congregate with other men their age.  Younger men play softball, poker, sit in taverns or puff on cigars in backyards to discuss politics, sports, work and relationships.  Beyond 65 years of age, before visiting a gym to sit on a stationary bike or hobble on a tread mill, before grocery shopping with coupons and eating lunch at the local buffet with the senior discount, many elderly men congregate at the nearest Mc Donald’s for a small breakfast and free coffee.  This is what you are likely to hear.

 

Harry- I’m going to California to visit my daughter Julia in Los Angeles next month.

Her husband is such a phony son-of-a-bitch.  He thinks I’m stupid because I’m             a little on the hard of hearing side.

 

Joe-            They say a girl finds a man like her dad but I say bullshit that.

 

Oliver- Most of men today are goddamn pussies really when you get down to it.

 

Harry- Amen to that…  So anyway Julia’s husband whom I call Gilligan because he’s

like that twerp from that old TV show.  He lets my grandson who is fifteen now run around in girl’s tight jeans.  The kid mopes like he’s neglected and carries a goddamn skateboard around with him everywhere.  The hair in the eyes and so on.  You can’t spank kids no more and they run the fucking show.  My son-in-law tries to reason with a kid that is telling him to go fuck himself.  So I step in and tell the kid that I fucked meaner looking men in jail and if he ever gets the idea to talk to me the way he does to his parents, he’ll need more than an orthodontist.  My daughter got all upset and her husband tells me he doesn’t talk that way to his children…  I turn to my grandson and apologize.  I sez to him, you know you’re right.  Your father should go fuck himself.

 

Oliver- California is the reason that this country we will have this Muslim

motherfucker doing nothing for another four years.  Yes we can do what?  What the fuck has he done?  Sadly enough, what is the next guy gonna do?  The Mormon?  They all fucked things up together and now none of them can step outside themselves and just get shit done.

 

Joe-             Did you call him a Muslim because you cain’t call him a nigger in front of me?

Is that what you wanna call him, Ollie?  A nigger?

 

Oliver- You know I will call a spade a spade.  I’ve called you a spade, and Javier

making the hash browns a spic and Harry the Heeb and I ain’t gonna change now.  If you’re a fag, don’t be mad if I call you a fag.  You wanna be African-American?  Go back to fucking Africa.  You ever been to Africa?  Fuck no you haven’t.  Harry here is a Jew.  You think he’s been to Israel?

 

Harry- I was in Israel after the war.

 

Oliver- Okay then.  Fuck all of you.  Why don’t you join them smelly kids in the park

complaining about people with money.  The communists lost.  It’s survival of the fittest just like Darwin said.  You’re smart?  You go to school?  Go get a good job.  It’s easier to cry and sit in the park.  Harry, why don’t you go put on your grandson’s bitch jeans and wheel this African-American over to the next, “Yes We Can” rally.  For fuck’s sake…  I voted for the son-of-a-bitch too.  I don’t give a shit what color you are, if you got a cock or a cunt.  You fuck up, hit the fucking road.

 

Joe-            Okay, Archie Bunker…  We heard your sermon.

 

Harry- Did you see the ass on that new woman they got here?  She don’t look

Mexican.

 

Oliver- She’s Puerto Rican.  Those Ricans got asses on them like black broads.  You

Can tell.

 

Joe-             You know something about African-American women, do ya?

 

Harry- It’s a proven fact that if you want a real good piece of ass, you don’t wanna

choose a Jewish girl.  Foreplay for a Jewish broad is two weeks of begging.

 

Oliver- Look at this…  You remember Bill who moved to Florida to be with his kid?

He’s right here in the obituaries.  Looks like the memorial will be here.  Bill

was a good guy.  Had that annoying habit of sucking up his fucking snots while I was trying to eat, but otherwise he was a stand up guy.

 

Joe-             We’re at that age now when you check the obituaries before the horoscope.

 

Harry-            Let’s talk about something else.  How bout them Tigers, huh?

 

Joe-            Nobody gives a damn bout baseball no more.

Harry-            That’s not true.  Look at attendance at games all over the country.

 

Oliver-            I still love a good game.  I think football has taken over by far but I still like a

A good game.  Kids today sit indoors watching television, playing video games.  You see a thin kid these days; he’s a freak of nature.  I’m so sick of seeing young boys with tits big enough to wear bras.  What the fuck happened?  You got half the country diabetic today.  Kids play sports on computers when they aren’t jacking off to porn.

 

Joe-             Oh so you’re against porn?  You becoming a Muslim too?

 

Oliver- I’m against men with tits.  You wanna play sports, give your thumbs a rest

and go to a park.  When we were kids, our parents lived through the depression.  We were told we had it good.  I don’t know how much softer things can get.

 

Harry- You have to admit that porn is outstanding today.  You don’t gotta sneak into

Into peep shows anymore and play with yourself in a seedy theater.  Technology is wonderful.

 

 

Oliver receives a phone call from his niece in New Jersey that his last remaining sibling is being put into a nursing home.  The dementia was becoming too difficult for his niece to handle with a family and a job.  Oliver hung up and said nothing for a minute as he thought about growing up with his older sister who was born prior to World War II.  She had always been so sharp and witty.  The idea that she had become childlike due to Alzheimer’s was hard for Oliver to swallow.  Oliver wondered when his expiration date was.  He wondered what it would be that would eventually do him in.  He was sad enough to cry but didn’t.  Joe and Harry saw that Oliver looked upset, quiet and distant.  Joe gave Oliver his moment to process the news he just received without asking what had happened.  Harry could not resist.  Oliver took a sip of his free coffee, raised his eyebrows before speaking philosophically.

 

“Boys…  We are the future dead and that’s for sure.  It’s a beautiful day today.  I think I’ll drag the old lady out for a stroll.  Dust her off and take her for a spin…  I’ll see you in the morning.  If I don’t get here by six, one of you grab our table.  The damn Koreans know we sit here but will take it if we’re not prompt…  See ya, boys.”

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May 15, 2011

Imported to Detroit

Johannes would run right down the center of 8 Mile Road with two Doberman Pinchers in any weather.  It didn’t matter if it was hot or cold, snow or rain and in Detroit, you could get some of the coldest weather in the world and the most hot and humid.

The Warren Police on the north side of Eight Mile referred to the strong looking man as, “The Bad Santa”.  The Detroit Police on the south side of the dividing line referred to him as, “Zeus”.  The Blacks thought the man could very well be the devil himself and the trailer park whites just thought he was a bad assed old man who was fed up. Whatever one might call Johannes, he was unique, intense, driven and racist.

Johannes would often walk into a Detroit mini market where unemployed young black men would go to buy cheap flavored cigars so that they could house their marijuana and taunt them and the Indian clerks.

“Say boys, do you know vat zee lesbians und dee black mans have een common?”

“Fuck you, old white bitch..”

“Ah you give up so easily.  Zee lesser minds.  Trained monkeys who drink malt liquor and smoke zee weed all day…  And you got zee pusher behind zee bullet proof glass.  He ees safe een zee cage while zee animals crave zee fix.”

One of the young men pulled out a nine millimeter while he popped open a bag of salt and sour potato chips by squeezing the air out with his free hand.  The thin, young black man with a blue faux diamond studded Detroit Tigers hat with a straight brim and a long white t shirt pointed the handgun sideways at the large, muscular white man who was wearing a t shirt that read, “whiter than white”, a pair of black shorts and long white hair and a long white beard.  Picture Sean Connery on steroids, with long hair and a beard and a whole lot of hate that would be Johannes.

“Vi ees eet that zee black men point zee gun sidevays und zee white men holds eet straight?  You small minds cannot answer zat.  You got zee balls to pull the trigger, do eet.”

The young man did pull the trigger and just like trying to kill wild game, if you miss the kill shot, you most likely will be killed.  Johannes grabbed the hand gun that was crafted in Austria, released the clip and sodomized the young man with his own weapon while his shoulder oozed blood onto his whiter than white shirt.  This was all captured on closed caption film which eventually circulated on Youtube and then was used by the American Nazi Party that had set up camp in suburban Detroit to try and entice disgruntled metropolitan Detroit whites into joining their hate group.  The ANP felt Detroit was ripe for growing the membership.

Johannes was a German born neo-Nazi that was barred from his own country for hate crimes once he left Germany to help prop up the white government in South Africa in the early 1990’s.  From South Africa, Johannes moved to theUnited States and lived in Idaho for a number of years before the ANP sent him to set up camp in Detroit.  Johannes job was to spew racist propaganda on the internet and troll hard core Punk Rock gigs to engage angry young white men into taking pride in the fact that they were white.

When Johannes wasn’t working, he was lifting weights, riding a stationary bicycle and jogging close to ten miles a day.  Johannes stood a hair short of 6’4 and 260 lbs with less than ten percent body fat.  Johannes had a string of young chubby tattooed girls he met at Skinhead gigs with bad straight bang hair cuts and nose rings that would shack up with him in hisDetroit home that had razor wire; a fifteen foot iron fence around his home with dozens of German Shepard’s roaming free.  The front gate had a saying in German, “Arbeit Macht Frei” or work makes you free.  Johannes drove around in a bulletproof 1988 Ram Charger truck provided for by the ANP.

Travis and Lemont were twin brothers who were born and raised in the city of Detroit and by the age of nineteen, they had spent their entire adulthood in the Wayne County Prison.  They had been arrested for armed robbery, home invasion, car jacking, illegal weapons and open liquor in a car that wasn’t even theirs.  The twins couldn’t be blamed really for the path they took in life.  Their mother who was a prostitute, died and the boys were raised by their grandmother who was thirty years of age when they were born.  Some fifteen children and grandchildren existed and managed to grow up in the home despite the neglect.

Travis and Lemont after spending close to eighteen hard months in prison among some of the worst people in the country, they decided that they would give conventional work a chance.  A fat white man with a pencil thin mustache, gave them both jobs holding signs in front of large retail shops that were about to go out of business.

EVERYTHING MUST GO.  70% OFF OF EVERYTHING IN THE STORE

In good weather and bad, the twins held signs while they listened to music on street corners throughout the Detroit area.  The mustachioed white man had an old Oldsmobile Delta 88 circa 1980’s in light blue.  The car had been hot three times over and was given to Salvio in exchange for a debt.  The car sat in under a tarp in storage for years.  Salvio brought the twins over to see the car.  They were immediately in love.

“You willing to sell this car to us foh $500.00?”

“Whaddamygonna do with a car like this?  It’s a fucking car for kids.  It’s a kids car for chrissakes.  What’s an old fuck like me gonna do in a car like this?  You boys are good boys and I wanna get this outta my space anyway.  I gotta guy who can get you all the legal stuff for this.  You get pulled over by pigs and everythings gonna check out.  You want it?”

The twins shared the car, detailed it, raised it, put on large wheels and rims with a stereo system that could be heard blocks away like distant mortar fire on a battle field.  The twins were living a civilized, dignified life where they made honest to goodness money under the radar in cash.  They helped their grandmother pay for the dish they had installed so that they could watch anything they wanted at anytime.  Life was good.

The twins found girlfriends who happened to be sisters but not twins themselves and would drive south to hang out with them at a community center off of Mc Nichols inDetroit.  One day the two sisters stopped by to see their boyfriends play basketball at the park and then the four of them went downtown to the Lafayette Coney Island and then to hang out by the river, kiss, sweet talk around Hart Plaza and then drive to a remote spot to consummate their deep undying affection, while a Snoop Dogg tuned quietly played in the classic car with steamed up windows.

“I wanna..” bust a bitch upside her motherfuckin head
for talkin shit to a pimp
Limp on ’em, flip on ’em, dip on ’em
Crip on ’em, and put this motherfuckin dick on ’em
This sorta fish called a bitch oughta hush up
Rolled a fat blunt and smoked this motherfuckin dope up
Cause you know what? (Whattup?)
Shit a nigga know you’re so tough, but bitch I wanna go fuck
“I wanna..” take you upstairs, and do dat dere
Hell motherfuckin yeah
See I’m a real player and I won’t waste your time
I’ve been a starter, I ain’t never sat the fuckin pine
Stay on the frontline, it’s all by de-sign
Nigga done the crizzime, ain’t never dropped a dizzime
Everything is fizzine, rollin up a dizzime
D-O-double-G I got bitches waitin in lizzine

Across town Johannes was speaking on stage at a VFW hall.  Six Skinhead bands were playing.  The crowd was full of mostly sweaty young, white bald boys and men scattered with dumpy girls with razor cuts and bangs.  Johannes was a celebrity among the young skins.  Nobody yelled out stupid things or taunted him.  They were in awe of his physique and ability to say all the right things to make them proud to be white.  All in a German accent no less.

“You government and zee media calls us all sorts of zings but who runs zee government?  Who runs zee media?  A black president and Jew media tells you that you should be ashamed of youselves for being proud to be white.  Der ees no shame een being white.”

Cheers rang out in the crowded hall.  Johannes smiled and took it all in.  After thirty seconds of chants of “White Power”, he posed a few questions before getting off of the stage for the next band.

“Who ees proud to be white?  Who feels eet ees an honor to be white?  Who here has zee courage to stand up and tell the world dat you are white and white is right.  White ees right!”

The twins drove slowly towards home feeling good about the night as they drove down 8 Mile Road on a beautiful summer evening.  They played basketball, ate, laughed, drank, made love and it was all mostly legal.  Life was good.  Travis boosted the volume to a Jadakiss song at a red light, unaware that two cars had pulled up next to them on their left and right.

            Hustle after hustle - tryin to be a rich nigga
If I get caught up, I'll never be a snitch nigga
We pimpin hard charge it all to a bitch nigga
Under my denim is a big fo'-fifth nigga
fuckin with me is like, jumpin off a cliff nigga
And I don't practice I was born with this gift nigga

Johannes was pumped up from the show and couldn’t unwind even though he had made rough love to a girl named Gina from Taylor who moved out of her parent’s house and had been living with her boyfriend who had beaten her up.  Gina was moved by Johannes’s speech and so she left the VFW hall to spend a night in a bed and have sex.  Johannes left Gina in his bed, got dress in his running clothes and decided to go for a jog with his two prized Dobermans; shotzie and Frtitz.  Johannes hit the button on his ancient walkman that played a cassette of a Skinhead band called, Sick of it All.  The song was called, Breeders of Hate.

My mouth spouts
these words of anger and fight towards the other man
I’m bent out of shape
I’m feeling irate
feel that blood flow
the relic of sin I’ve always confused with black and white
Guns on the street, a message complete
Breed self hatred tonight
Save your insanity
you die for my needs
fuck them up now
take my advice and
breed your hate at home
the world wont be at peace
until my brothers are alone
my mouth spouts
these words of anger and fight towards the other man
Guns on the street, a message complete
Breed self hatred tonight

A shot rang out and missed the heads of both Travis and Lemont.  Travis hit the accelerator and a chase was on between the twins and the two cars that had pulled along side them at the red light.  Johannes new goal was trying to get his heart rate to forty five beats per minute, bench 300 lbs twice and run a mile under eight minutes.  All of which are high goals for a man close to sixty years of age.  Travis watched the needle on his antique automobile reach 100 mph.

The 1980’s model Oldsmobile was found in the middle of a vacant lot about a half mile south of 8 mile. A day later, on page three of the Detroit News was a brief detail of what the Detroit Police found.

Detroit-The dismembered body of Johannes Schwig was found in the back seat of a 1987 Oldsmobile registered to a deceased man in Flint,Michigan.  Cameras along 8 Mile Road captured a high speed collision near Van Dyke between the automobile and the pedestrian.  No further information has been gathered at this time.

December 21, 2010

Merry Christmas, Detroit or Take the Homeless Skating

Tim could hardly be called tiny but the name sort of stuck with Tim since he didn’t hit puberty until late in high school.  As the saying goes, Tiny’s nut did not drop until late in adolescence.  Tiny or Tim as his mother called him, was short and had a high pitched voice until senior year of high school.  It was at that time that Tiny joined the ranks of all the other boys who were becoming men.

            Tiny grew up in suburban Detroit and played ice hockey from kindergarten through juniors when he finally came to grips with the fact that he was good and not great and that professional hockey was not going to be his vocation.  Tiny went to the University of Michigan, became an accountant, found a job and started a family in Los Angeles before being moved back by his company to suburban Detroit.

            Saying that he was born and raised in Detroit was not a source of pride to Tiny.  He felt as though he had not really gone very far in life by returning to a town that seemed to have crumbled, decayed and stagnated through the years.  Returning to Detroit seemed to be a punishment to Tiny who was squeezed out in the running to climb a rung up the ladder of his company’s firm.  Instead his boss gave him a ho-hum review and gave him the choice of losing his job or move to Detroit.  Tiny opted to keep his job and move to Detroit.

            For anyone that ever had to move from Los Angeles to Detroit and really spent some time in inner city Detroit where neighborhoods gave way to prairie and trees grew through the roofs of abandon homes that were not burned down or decayed to pieces, Detroit could be quite surreal.  Tiny was determined to put in his time for his company that was housed in the General Motors Renaissance Center along the banks of the Detroit River in the heart of downtown Detroit.  Tiny bought a condominium on Lafayette which was walking distance from the Renaissance Center.  He didn’t want his family to get the feeling of permanence.  Condominiums seem more transient than single family homes at least Tiny felt this was the case. 

            Tiny’s wife was sort of indifferent to Detroit being a native Angelino who thought places like Michigan was somewhere on the east coast.  It had to be since it was in the Eastern Time zone, right?  Susan exercised profusely and shuttled their sons to hockey practice up in Troy, some fifteen miles north of the city to play for Little Caesar’s.  Tiny, when he wasn’t working, spent a great deal of his own free time late at night playing men’s league hockey or rat hockey in well to-do towns north and west of Detroit.  When Tiny told fellow hockey mates that he lived in 313, most were quite stunned.

            It was the night before Christmas Eve that Tiny went with some of his buddies that were Detroit Firemen to play in a fund raising tournament in Windsor, Ontario.  Tiny sent his wife Susan alone with their two boys to a holiday tournament outside of Toronto and opted to play hockey himself. 

            The tournament was uneventful for Tiny.  He played defense and had a few assists and allowed a few bad goals to happen by not tying up his man.  He had a few push matches in front of his goalie, had a good sweat and then returned with the team to downtown Detroit to finish a night of male bonding; play hockey, drink, watch hockey, drink, gamble and drink some more and then possibly hit a strip club, pass out, return home hung over and be low keyed and a family man on Christmas Eve.

            Tiny stood out in front of a downtown watering hole called the Old Shillelagh after watching the Detroit Red Wings play at Joe Louis Arena.  A digital display could be seen from the street letting everyone know that only eight two days were left until St. Patrick’s Day or possibly one hundred days left of potential winter weather before the Tigers would return to Comerica Park as a sure sign of summer.

            Tiny smoked a large cigar that dangled out of the corner of his mouth like a large phallic symbol.  Smoking indoors was only allowed in casinos and so the men stood on Monroe Street smoking, laughing and talking.  A disheveled looking black man with rags hanging off of him and leathery exposed hands asked the smoking men if they had any change to spare.  The man wouldn’t take no for an answer.

            “Its Christmas y’all…  Y’ain’t got some spare change so I kin buy me a hamburger and a little water?  Come ahn y’all…  Find it in y’heart t’help a man who ain’t gotta dime.”

            Tiny listened to the man and he thought about how he felt trapped in a Detroit that was so different than the city his father had worked as an assembly line worker for General Motors from the end of World War II until 1984.  Tiny’s father retired before he was let go.  He outlasted the change that was coming.  Tiny’s rant was angry, racist and drunk.  Even his fellow hockey mates were surprised by his words even though they may not have disagreed with him.

            “This is your fucking Detroit…  Since the riots and Coleman Young, you people have done nothing but run this city into the fucking shitter and you hold your hand out and ask people like us to give you more.  Well you got the whole fucking city to yourselves.  Go ask one of your own to give you some fucking change…  I could use a change.  Change this town back to a place where people might want to live.”

            The man looked at Tiny with a blank stare and then shuffled off into the night.  Tiny went back in and had a few more pints of Guinness before deciding to go to his parent’s home rather than go on to play poker at the Greektown Casino and crash at the Greektown Hotel with his teammates.  Tiny would have stayed but he needed to let his parent’s dog out at his boyhood home in Warren since his parents were visiting Tiny’s brother and his family in Akron, Ohio.

            Tiny blared Van Halen on his fabulous sound system in his Range Rover as he sped north on interstate 75.  The thought came to Tiny to piss on the abandon Fisher Body 21 that once made Cadillac limousines. It was symbolic.  Tiny needed to piss but he was going to piss on the symbol of what Detroit had become and was mired in. The building stood abandoned with all the windows smashed out of it, covered in graffiti and home to drug addicts and homeless. It was Detroit’s Chernobyl. Snow had begun to gently fall as Tiny took the interstate 94 ramp from interstate 75.  Tiny was singing, Hot for Teachers as he took the curve too fast.  Tiny couldn’t control the SUV.  It hit the guard rail and went right through it.  The large vehicle felt weightless as it plummeted over twenty feet and landed nose first on the ground.  The car didn’t roll or tip, it stood vertically on end.  The airbag deployed and hit Tiny with such force that it broke his nose and cheek bones.  Tiny smashed his sternum on the steering wheel and fell in and out of consciousness.  Tiny had a dream that he was walking on a sunny day through a field of knee high grass towards the Fisher Body 21 building.  It was the 1950’s and the building was strong looking, vibrant and intact.  Tiny walked up to the security guard at the entrance who saw him bleeding.  The security guard posed a question.

            “Say Mack…  What in the world happened to you?”

            The security guard asked over and over until the voice changed along with the words and the accent.  The day was no longer sunny; it was cold, dark and snowy.  He could hear a voice posing the same question over and over again.

            “Say man… What happened to you?  You okay, man?  I know you breathin.  Kin you hear me?”

            Two old homeless black men raced from the fire they had built within the Fisher Body 21 building to see what had happened to the driver of the car that had sailed over the side of the freeway.  Tiny gave a faint response.  One of the homeless men took off on foot to possibly find a cop or someone with a cell phone that could call for an ambulance.  The other homeless man ran back to the building and grabbed a ratty old comforter that he dug out of the garbage.  It smelled horrible but it was warm and Tiny began to go into shock.  Tiny was aware of the fact that he was seriously hurt and the idea of dying that night was entirely possible.  Tiny was scared and began to say out loud that he wanted to live.  He had a wife and kids and he hadn’t yet done all the things he set out to do in life.  Tiny suddenly regretted that he didn’t spend more time with his wife and kids.  He regretted racing through life, doing two things at a time at all times.  He regretted being so angry and dissatisfied with life.  Tiny sniffled as he listened to a homeless black man that he couldn’t see.  All he could feel was a random stranger holding his hand.  If he were to die, someone living would witness it.  The homeless stranger was no stranger to the loss of life.  Jonas had lived through Vietnam and at least a decade on the streets.  Jonas quietly tried to reassure Tiny to fight.

            “Listen boy…  You keep yo eyes open an tell y’self you gone live.  You got a wife an kids…  That reason nuff to live foh.  Yo wife an kids don’t want to be putting yo ass in the goddamn ground on Christmas…  Hell naw.  She want you to give her some present and y’kids want the same.  They want to sit round and eat and talk like people do on dem holidays…  Just like Jimmy Stewart,” said Jonas.

            Jonas rubbed the top of Tiny’s left hand.  Jonas was cold but acclimated to being cold since he lived in the cold.  Tiny trembled almost uncontrollably as his teeth chattered.

            “You cold, I knows it…  Picture walking through a jungle where it so dang hot you kin barely breathe.  You got mosquitoes biting on you and you sweat so much at all times.  I lived through that in Vietnam foh two years, boy.  I sat in the jungle with a young good ole boy from Georgia who hated me foh the color my skin an when the time come an he was tremblin from shock ah been shot, he held mah hand an thanked me foh being wid him… He died an I felt bad.  I felt real bad cause I nevah toll him to fight.  I jus listen to him an he needed t’hear me tell em to fight foh his life…  I’m telling you, boy.  Fight foh yo life.  Fight foh yo family…  You don’t give up, boy.  You keep treading water cause the lifeguard coming.”

            Tiny fought hard to stay awake.  He thought about all the things he wanted to do and say to people that meant so much to him.  After a while he could hear sirens getting closer and closer.  The voice ceased speaking to him and his left hand grew cold.  Tiny passed out and came to in the hospital surrounded by his entire family and a television news crew.

            Every year since the accident on the day before Christmas Eve, Tiny and his hockey teammates rent out the Old Shillelagh and Campus Martius ice rink.  Homeless people from all over Detroit come to get a free meal of corned beef and cabbage and then ice skate for free at Campus Martius, which has an outdoor rink.  Homeless men and women put aside their woes and demons for a few hours as they shuffled across the ice to the sounds of Bing Crosby’s White Christmas.  It may seem like a bizarre thing to take the homeless ice skating but none of them minded.  In fact every year the homeless look forward to a day of dignity.  Tiny served food at the restaurant and tied skates at the ice rink.  He no longer raced around in traffic and cut people off.  He did not let insignificant things ruin his days either.  Tiny spent time with his family and took time to appreciate and grasp that every moment of life was life itself.  Tiny took the time to take life in instead of letting it race past him.  Almost dying will put life in true perspective.

            Tiny was offered a lateral move with his company back to Los Angeles and he declined.  When asked why, he answered; I am Detroit, Detroit is me.

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