Monday, April 25, 2005

Eyebrow massage?


I have been reading about, in order:

1) the Islamic calendar

2) the Arabic alphabet

3) Basque grammar.

My eyebrows are currently in knots from a near-paralyzed puzzled-inquisitive-lost expression. It hurts! I've had my shoulders in knots like this before (in fact it's become a chronic condition), but NEVER my eyebrows.

Anyone know what's being charged for an eyebrow massage in San Juan?

Better yet, anyone offering to do it for me?

Yeah, I knew I wasn't that lucky.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

lessons of the greek wannabe.

Well, since I know now that I'll be at CU this fall, I went and checked out (again) the website of a sorority I admire, an admirable organization made of phenomenal women. I believe in this group so much that I helped in some small way to bring it to the campus of my alma mater. I hope to be allowed to join them, perhaps while I'm in NYC. Life being as it is, tis never a sure thing. But it is something I really want.

Why? Well, I had "shopped" for a sorority that I would be happy to join, one that reflected not only my potential but also success in the present. An organization of outstanding but human women working to make the world around them shine. I wanted to see an org that wasn't about just hazing and college, but about continuing community service after academic life moved into the professional. These women... well, when I let them know I was interested, they immediately invited me to a weekend I'll never forget, one where I felt completely welcome. I began to identify with them as I got to know them over the two years that followed. Even if I never pledge, I'll hold the women I know in esteem because I understand that they are united for a purpose I believe in and share.

Thinking of sororities makes me reflect on the unity that is within the greek community. My maternal aunts,grandmother and grandfather are greek; my sister pledged a non-greek org, after my experiences in college. I knew before I even thought about colleges that pledging was something I was going to consider, because of the connections and the bonds that I saw all around me. My mama still talks about pledging, and my papa still teases her. I think he's a big part of the reasons why she hasn't pledged yet.

So I have to make my peace with the fact that I was hurt by people in a greek organization akin to the one I want to pledge. The pain of what happened (don't ask, I'm not tellin') made me bitter for a time against the entire organization, made me understand why some people absolutely can't stand the idea of GO's, etc. I got really negative on the whole idea. And that's not me (those who know me... know I'm always smiling, never defeated, evah evah evah). I became, after associating with certain people, exactly what I would never want to be. And it hurt to realize that.

I'm tired of blaming and of hating a whole group just for the actions of a few. So I'm forgiving.

I promise myself I won't cringe or make a face at mention of this nameless org. I promise not to judge all the upstanding women by the actions of the ones who made decisions at that time. I promise not to hold the hurt against the org I do wish to join. And I ask myself not to let the past poison a promising present.

And I'm moving on no matter if the future holds greek membership for me or not. It's taken 4 years to get to this point, I'm not proud to say, but I'm stepping on.

That's the biggest lesson I've learned from wanting to be greek.
"Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it." -Mark Twain

I thought y'all'd enjoy that. It's a quote from
Mere Islam , a site I found while surfing for food for my muslima soul.

I feel like I haven't really been describing my life here in PR. Now that I actually have a time frame on leaving (September, insha'Allah, I'm outta dis piece), I'm looking back at all my writing, paper and otherwise, and I haven't really captured the essence of this place, the way I want to taste it in my memories when I'm shivering through a NYC November, or worse, February.

So even though I'm not up to it just at the moment, I'll be doing that more often.

JOB SEARCH UPDATE: Nothing yet. Woo hoo.

Today I went to the Pueblo (not safeway Maggie, haha)and shopped for food for the first time in, seriously, about a month. The eating out was getting too ridiculous for my suddenly slimmed pocketbook. But if I swing it right (and I plan to), I have enough food to eat 3 meals a day from my house. Yay!

My house is also presentable for the first time since I moved in (end of February, for those who kept track), which is making me happy. I still have a constant low level of anxiety going though, connected to the fact that I feel like I'm missing a source of income. So now I'm stressed about bills and such. I've got to relax.
My shoulders are constantly knotted up. Geez. What's a girl to do?

Since last night was a full moon, I called Trilce on the spur of the moment, and we went out to El Balcon del Zumbador to see if we could get our salsa on. T'was horribly disappointing, nothing like the first time I went. Estaba llenita de viejos que me tiraron toda la santa noche. Y si no era un viejo, era una del grupo de lesbianas que se estacionaron en la esquinita del bar alrededor de la tabla de billares. Trilce y yo ibamos a jugar, pero cuando entrabamos, todas las mujeres me miraron y empezaron a susurrar, como que yo era cute. I swear. What the heck is going on???

Nemmind, I know what the deal is. I had a long chat with Toto about it the other night... faith follows life follows faith. Since I truly honestly with all my heart believe that there is a man who is a Muslim and loves God as much as I do out there, God (swt)isn't gonna let me stray off that path by finding a cute, personable guy while I'm on la isla del espanto. *sigh*. Insha'Allah.

So yeah, anyone who actually reads what I post knows that I'm still Muslim, though it has been a struggle. I feel like a seed planted in the desert; hard as heck to blossom to my best spiritually when the Arab immigrant community here isn't really letting me in. But I still cover after a fashion. I still pray. I still fast. I still give my time (since I have no money). I still believe.
I hope I never become the kind of Muslim or contribute to the kind of community environment I've found here. I might not know all the hadith that apply to a particular situation, and I can't quote surahs in Arabic. But I know the meaning of Ummah and brotherhood, and I'm being the best example I can while I'm here.

whew, feel better now.

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Why children aren't eating

Quite a few things have happened since I last blogged in here. I'm trying to be good, but without my very own internet connection, tis a bit hard.
I'll try to get things out in the order I think of them.

Children who Don't Eat (but have food available)
I had two students pass out last week. Both times I was frantically summoned to the side of the student involved. One was okay, and one went into respiratory distress and had to be rushed to the hospital. The things they had in common? Both were girls, both were 13, and neither had eaten anything at all that day.

For those who didn't realize, I'm an eighth grade ESL teacher, so most of my students fall into the 13-15 year old range (I have a couple 16 and 18 year old students, all boys). The vast majority of my students are boys. Which means they're rowdy, often rebellious, quite smart, and very very physical people. In a word: teenagers.

The boys even meditate in silence together- they do have the occasional deep thought, which I can recognize by seeing 2 or 3 of them sitting on a red concrete bench, silently examining the leaves on the trees. I have very few boys who aren't accepted into the 8th/9th grade group as a whole when they're all shoving and sweating and scoring on the basketball court. Or walking (illegally) to the Taco Bell/Pizza Hut to share about 50 tacos between them at lunch bell . And even those not with the main group have their own little cliques. I'm used to this, so I know to look out for the boy who's alone, 'cuz he's probably in some state of crisis.

But being a girl in the 8th grade is significantly harder now, as both Ms. Wolfe (my Title I teammate) and I are coming to realize. We were once 8th grade girls ourselves, not so long ago, and it was nasty then, but worse now (I can't believe 10 years feels like yesterday!). It's hard. Not academically- the girls are in the sunny afternoon of the period before high school where the girls are just accepted to have better grades than the guys. Socially, though- 8th grade is killer, I mean crazy tough for my young ladies.

Ladies. Damas. That's what I call them when I need them to listen up, earn the grown-up status they want so much. They sit up, thrusting shoulders and a-cups higher, eyes bright and aware. They're shorter, more vicious versions of their grown mothers. They're becoming part of society. They notice things. Like the girl whose skintight 'uniform' pants show the presence of dimpled thighs or the absence of a thong. Or the one who wears a DD, or heaven help her, the AA. They see everything and are vicious about it. Because they know that she who has the juiciest morsels, the sharpest snaps, the most devastating observations, she's the one who reigns. Or gets the 'best' boyfriend (here, likely to be one who doesn't hit her or choke her like the other boys have), the opportunities to be a promoter, get easy money.

And so they don't eat.
They are killing themselves.

At a time when obesity is the health condition most concerning administration on this island nation within the USA, I've had two girls pass out from not eating within a week. They want to be the dancers in the Daddy Yankee videos. They're smart; they don't worry about facial blemishes, the acne that terrified me at that age. "Missy, eso no e' na'!", they tell me, unconcerned. "Se usa un poco de maquillaje y ya", just a little makeup and, voila. I've seen their mothers and aunts, cousins and babysitters come to work wearing perfect faces worthy of the 3 Miss Universe titleholders who were born here, so I believe it. Their waist length hair is cut and shaped, curled or straightened or even just ponytailed with the nonchalance that comes of being able to do so with ease.

But they're starving themselves, because they know that imperfections that make grown women are a lot harder to hide in the spandex, low cut, brazilian wax expectations here. They cut each other down on the basis of a little healthy hip jiggle, the slight rounded belly.

Some of the girls realize that this isn't a game with a winner. They stay to themselves in their groups. These are the ones who won't fit in the society now, but will be on top later. I hope. They're healthy and don't mind modeling themselves after women and men who are smart enough to ignore the quirks that come of being made individuals.

My question is, why? What can I do to stop this? How do I get my girls to see that videos aren't the be and end-all of their lives? To stop them from trying to undermine puberty for the sake of vanity? I can't and wouldn't want to force them to eat. And food itself is available to them. They just aren't taking.

What is wrong here, that girls would rather die than eat?

The Today is Back

Ah, me.

I found this story when I logged on in the good'ole comp lab today.

Makes me nostalgic for the days of junior and senior year, when Human Sexuality was the course in demand, and every group of take-charge, independent women got around to discussing birth control: what was good, what was not, and when to use whatever.

The timing is terrific as well, with political and religious figures evaluating their stances on birth control in the light of the new Pope.

As for me, I never used Today, (if you do the figuring I was a bit young to be worr'in bout it when the sponge went off the shelves in '95), but I have quite a few older friends who rave about it and are thrilled.

I'm just happy another option is out there to help keep unplanned pregnancies from sending women to do crazy things...

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Behind A Door

Behind A Door

Wow, this Blog thang ain't s'bad!

Yo, the things you find in FREE time. I've been just randomly clicking that button at the top right of my screen (the one that says, Next Blog), reading, and if I like what I see, stopping to comment.

Check out summa what I've found:

Being as how I love linguistic thangs innyhow (look, I named my blog for the way my age was SAID, not how it's SPELLED) check this:

Your Linguistic Profile:

55% General American English

35% Dixie

5% Upper Midwestern

5% Yankee

0% Midwestern

hoo-ray for Tuskegee, ALABAMA, home of my parents and their parents and their parents...I will admit I fudged it. I came out with 10% yankee the first time, I can't be havin' it.

And then, being that I'm bout the farthest thing from being European, I HAD to do this one:

Your Inner European is Spanish!

Energetic and lively.

You bring the party with you!

FUNNY seeing as how the only European country I've visited was... yup, good'ole Espana!

And then these sites...I could write abook and Notas Varias- in portuguese!

Lemme see whatall else I can find :-)

(Almost) Free Time!

The thing about working 2 jobs is you never have any free time. I feel so FREE now! The possibilities are endless.

I was talking to my girl Tamika about the whole Emory/Columbia debate. She had something to say:

"How you gon' be praying about something so hard, and then when you get the blessing, throw it back at God like, 'Oh, yeah, I don't really want it'? Quit making up excuses and just go! It's Columbia- what is your problem?"

So after that very well placed verbal spank, I got the show on the road as far as financial aid and housing and all that goes. Thank the Lord we had another one of portareeco's famous (and infamous) state holidays yesterday, giving me a much needed rest. I know that Islam doesn't have a 'sabbath' (nope, we don't- institutionalized workaholism there, except we get 5 breaks a day), but working as I still do, I wonder how on earth anyone can work 5 days a week 40 hours plus without taking the occasional 3 day weekend in there. My stamina isn't what it used to be- when I was in undergrad I could go and go and go and go...

Maybe I just need the whole college life thing back.


I'm also doing the whole job search thing, and tis going ok. I need to figure out how I'm going to print my resume, since "la yupi" still is on strike. And I'm searching for the algebra class I need to take in order to be up to snuff when I get to NYC. Plus I have to order my transcripts from all of the various schools.

So this ain't exactly 'free' like Cinque.

Still I'm happy to have it.

Friday, April 15, 2005

Happy Birthday!

In all the hustle and bustle of trying to get out of work I almost forgot to say this:
Happy Birthday

Miss RiRi!

It's Bilal's birthday too, which I can't forget seeing as how Riri and Bilal always went on about it when we were in college. I'm not wishing Bilal a damn thing, happy or not.

Love you Riri! Enjoy your day, girl!



Is the root of all evil. I'm sure I've written about this before. I just... don't...want... taxes. What's new.

I'm back in touch with Sherry! She left a comment on my page. Hi Sherry! Y'all should check out her journal at
livejournal. Tis cool, very cool. The essence of Sherry.

I'm lucky in that I got out of school early. I'd have gotten out at 11:00 anyhow, because the school system here is so lame and allocation of funds so wacked that there is no substitute teaching system here. So, since three of the seven eighth grade teachers at the school supposedly were sick today (although one showed up an hour late), we did an horario, which means we schedule 40 min classes and take all the kids before 11:00 AM, which leaves us teachers free to get isht done in the afternoon without kids.

I hate to say it but I wish we did horario more often. It gives me time for that pesky paperwork I just loooove so much.

Bad thing about that is that whenever the kids suspect that this might happen, as soon as we arrive in our classroom at 7:25, we get obnoxious questions like, "Missi, cuales maestros vinieron hoy (which teachers came today)?", or ,"Missi, vamos a hacer horario (are we going to do a 'schedule')?", or, the one I hate most- if I'm the last teacher to arrive so that they don't do an horario- "Ay Missi! Por que tenias que llegar hoy!? (Why did YOU have to come today?!)"

Understandable. Still, it's the kinda thing one looks forward to when one arrives after just barely talking oneself out of the bed with the argument that the students need whatever one has planned to teach. Right.

SHOOT! I just remembered I left that frigging Registro at the school! I was gonna finish that mess this weekend! Boo Boo Boo!

Well anyhow, I was sayin' that we woulda left early anyhow, because just as my third class of the day begins, we're jamming to the Janet CD I've popped into the school-owned stereo, the kids are working quietly for once in their lives (thank you, Ms. Jackson), when the lights and the one fan in my classroom go *pop* and everything grows dim. Great! Power outage!

Well, according to law in portareeco there are 1,001 ways to get a break from working if you work for the state, and one is not having power in the building. The kids were all for leaving right then, but I explained that since the eighth grade team already did horario, they'd leave at 11:00AM as scheduled. Feeling faint from hunger and hollering at 8th graders, Miss Wolfe and I finished our classes lickety split and were "off like a prom dress" (her words, not mine).

We came screeching on two wheels of her rented Echo into the parking lot at 12:03, only to have the Head Librarian tell us, "You guys can go! They said so a while ago! No power, no school!"

YES! We headed on outta there. Miss Wolfe dropped me in Hato Rey, where I caught the bus back to Sta. Rita to plan my procrastination before being sucked into the vortex that is the main post office on tax day.

Now that it's 2:30, though, I really can't wait much longer. I'd better get this done. Then, just as a reward, I'll go see a movie.

And I'm out like Shout.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Djimon Hounsou, Are you married?

Y'all can tell where my mind is tonight.

All I want to know (and can't find out) is: Djimon Hounsou- MARITAL STATUS?!

if he isn't married I need to know why... looks ain't everything.

T'would be a shame to have a man that fine with horrible BO or an ignorant mind. Though I think the latter is well-nigh impossible at this point. *sigh* if someone knows, please put me outta my misery, thanks!

bye now!

I swear just one more post today. Maybe.

YO, I gotta tell this to someone and the blog community is def safest.

I am crushing mad hard on Alej. (Those of you who know me can just tune out, you know the score.)

I work (almost past tense, just 5 days left) with this man named Alej at PB. He's new, was one of those hired to replace Kabo and David. He's way, way shorter than I am, has like those yellow-y hazel eyes and black hair and like a permanent fiveo'clock shadow. And a body under all those vato clothes. HOTTIE!!! When I first saw him, I was like, DAMN tis a shame y'so durn short boy! He's about 5'8, which puts him out of my height range.

THEN he turns out to be a sweetie, too. We've chatted a coupla times seeing as how PB is mad slow of late. Turns out he's almost got his degree, wants to go back to Spain (south, not my adopted city of Salamanca), is mad laid back but still personable. And doesn't get alarmed nor uncomfortable when I get...ahem... vocally annoyed.

Found out too the other night that this dude is like 28! Definitely in the age range for me.

So gotta figure out how to get this one going (if it'll go. He is still mad short; I don't care, but he might.). He gave me his number the other night when he was sent home early. (TOLD yall PB was slow.) I called him later rather than bum a ride off of Tania, whose narrow young behind is being quite bitchy lately, and he gave me a ride home just cuz he didn't want me to pay a cab. (TOLD yall he's a sweetie). Instead of taking the quicky route, he did this sunday drive thing all through Carolina to Iturregui and through most of Rio Piedras back to my house in Sta. Rita. (Those who don't know portareeco, he turned a 7 minute drive into 30.) It was really relaxing, and I remarked on it, and he was like, yeah, he likes to drive and he knew I needed to chill out.

this guy is gonna be one of my peoples regardless. Are you kidding?

So yeah I just thought bout all that and gave a girly lil squeal and had to tell somebody.

plus he lives 'round the corner from me? SHOOOT, Alej, you need to be my main squeeze!

Ok I'm done crushing. I'll holla later. Peace...
Nothing to write. That's weird. I've all this junk in my head and nothing to write.

I'm content, that's why. Most of my writing comes from anxiety, and the funny isht from anger. Finally I'm happy, imagine that.


Wednesday, April 13, 2005

No safety net... crash or fly, crash or fly...

Well, I done gone and did it. I just gave my notice at PB.

Nothing is really holding me there. I was talking it over with Miss Wolfe this afternoon after the kids ran us nuts during their institutionalized state exams (las Pruebas Puertorrique~nas). And the truth is, every day that I work at night and then turn around and actually make it to school the next day is killer. I like the people there but not enough to where I HAVE to work with them. The money isn't really worth it.

No. The money is not worth it at all.
So I walked in today and gave my notice.

*side bar* Jes, ( who at 5'9 and bout 110 pounds is the thinnest woman I have EVER seen in person. With like a 28 or 30 DD chest. God, bodies like that are the reason fashion magazines have been able to give heavier women complexes for years.), the new manager hired to replace Neli, was like, "you have to bring in a letter. You have to give two weeks." I was like, "Oh, yeah, of course I'm planning on writing a letter. I'm just writing it in the message book so they'll know not to schedule me." Puh-leeze. We'll see if that happens. I dont' want to close any doors, but at the same time, I ain't gotta give no notice, I did that to be nice to PB. Hello~Did anyone else read the line on the paper I signed that said I was signing into at-will employment? Tip to business managers: know of what you speak!*end side bar*

So now I'm back to job hunting, one of those transitional, necessary tasks that make me stronger and my life hell. Like moving. Or apartment and roommate shopping. Or college applications. Has anyone else glommed onto this? I like change... I just hate doing it!

Dag, one of the kids made a hilarious joke that I wanted to put out there, and now I'm forgetting it. This is the other side effect of working more than one full time job. My REM (random event memory) is getting full.

I'm sad about all the changes- I need to go read some poetry or something. Two years ago two years seemed like a lot of time, but now I look back and 2003 doesn't seem two years away, it's like yesterday. I learn this lesson over and over, deeper with every goodbye, and nostalgia still comes back to me. This being a grownup sure ain't what I thought it would be.

I'm scared too- of moving to a city I don't know (AGAIN), of leaving a profession just when I'm used to it, of not having any safety cushion for rough times, of not finding any happiness to soften those times. But since I'm tired of being slightly terrified, I'll put it all back into the bottom of my stomach, pick up my head and move on. Time to find a new job. Time to find out if NYC is right for me. Time to fly.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

There's headaches and then there's headaches.

Ooohhh I've got a headache.

I'm trying to take myself out of the situation I'm in, but being inside it, it's a lil bit hard.

Today I called my parents house, spoke to my mama a bit, and then talked to JW.
JW, Insha'Allah, will be graduating high school in May. That's cause for celebration, but what follows is not. He only applied to two universities, the one where our mother works and University of Memphis, in Tennessee.

Now, my parents both know the evil of loans; the only reason they have the house they live in now is because my mother got her BS and MS in Biochemistry on full scholarships, and then my father went to school at the university where she works for almost a full tuition remission. Had they been working under average school loans, even for just my father, they'd never have been able to save enough for the house while raising 3 kids. (I don't think my father was supporting IG at the time, from the family lore I've heard on the subject.)

All this to say, they're campaigning for JW to stay at home and take class for about $1,600 a semester, at the unviersity of Mom. If he stays on campus, it'll cost $6000 per semester, which he'd have to pay with loans. That's after tuition remission, since JW has earned no scholarships and definitely no favors from university administration. In fact, I'm surprised they admitted him after the fraud he committed on the university computers 2 years ago. The kid is brilliant and a troublemaker.
Everyone takes the opportunity of my phone call, which I made because I was stressed and just wanted to hear some unconditionally loving voices, to ask my opinion. And I gave it: I told my mother that I think tis best if JW stays on campus his freshman year. Then I began to think of all the factors involved.

JW is an incredibly smart child- and yes, he's still a child in too many ways. I'm upset at him for only applying to two schools, because he belongs in a great music and or tech school somewhere, but the thing is, I also feel like he could use a couple more years of parental support. He's still doing stupid isht two months before his 18th birthday. I don't think he understands that 18 is a magic, gilded line- after that, as we said my freshman year at GWU, "they can throw you in real jail and swallow the key". I think he's got the talent for, say, Berklee or Juilliard (sp?), but in Boston or NYC he'd get his ass killed saying or doing the wrong thing to the wrong person.

So my mama puts JW on the phone, and we talk for about 20 minutes, during which time I let him know that loans are worse than my parents are telling him, since they didn't actually have to pay any themselves, and that really, he has the option to go to another school outside of da Nati. He didn't know / hadn't thought about the possibility of transferring after his freshman year to another school. I told him that that would brighten his chances, especially if he does stay at home, save money, and get kick-ass grades. Any college could take that as proof that he's grown up a bit after his high school highjinks, and then hopefully he'd be able to handle himself as a young black man away from home. Because I'll tell you, all the Black men I knew in college went through various issues, some heavy and some not- and all of them are INCREDIBLY smart, and VERY mature. JW's got the first, but not really the second. I finish by letting him know what no one told me when I was his age and needed to hear it; that I was in a position to do absolutely anything, but that working for it would be the hardest thing I'd ever have to do, and that the sacrifice would absolutely be worth it. Had I known that I NEEDED to work as hard as I did when I got to college, I'd be in an entirely different place right now. JW gets really quiet and actually tells me that he's thinking about what I'm saying and that he'll call me. Which either means he's gonna try to make a good decision or he's reading more into what I said then what I meant. Lord knows how things will turn out either way.

Headache number one.

This conversation took place as I was making my way to PB for the afternoon shift. Being that it's the domingo after the burial of the pope, things are even slower than usual here in portareeco. But do you know I got passed at two different bus stops TWICE by two different drivers?! I arrived an hour and forty minutes late to work, which already made me tense. I arrive and see that KarLi and Ale are already working.
But at one point, I had like 4 tables going, which was a record for the evening. One portuguese lady comes in with two kids, they get 2 hamburgers and three drinks for about $21. Then they get ice cream, and I forget to enter it in the POS. Oops. I took her the check, and then, after Neli, the manager, glares at me , I return to the table and let the nice woman know that I forgot to add the ice creams. I bring back the check and the lady says, "TwennyTwo!" (I ask all my customers to call me by name.

"Mande Usted?"
"Quanto e um gelato?"

I feel my heart sink. This doesnt' look good for what would've been a $4 tip.

"Sao $3.95 por cada uma, Senhora," I reply in my half-forgotten portuguese.

"Ah, OK. Muchas Gracias".

The lady thanks me profusely on her way out, and I go to clean the table (the cheapasses at PB have no busfolk). She hasn't left a tip.


Headache number two: I'm then sent home early because of the slow night. After arriving late and getting stiffed on a tip. Hooray. Remember, the goal is $500 by next Friday, or Twennytwo won't make it into Columbia Dreamskool of Public Health.

I found the greatest blog earlier: check it out, or, I forget how tis spelled.

Yall pray for me if you pray, and if you don't pray, I'll pray for you.

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Saturday again

Did some nice Saturday stuff, which is making me bummed that I have to go to work.
Although work makes it all possible. Ah, me, can I just get a job that I actually love AND that pays? It seems that's the problem of the century.

Anyhow, when I leave portareeco, ima be in a serious depression over the loss of Suhey, who is my equivalent of a hairdresser here. Since my hair is now locked (and shoulder length for those who wanted to know), I do it all pretty much myself. But that meant that I lost the whole saturdy-go-get-y'hair-did routine, and the women who are there with me and all the opinions and laughter to go with it. So now my regular appt is with Suhey in Hato Rey, who keeps my nails on point and has me cracking up at the same time.

Which brings me to the other Saturday thing I did; went to go see Beauty Shop at Plaza. I loved it! It reminded me of what I'm missing when I don't have a black community around me. It brought back some of my fave music memories (who else knows that the song that fine man was playing is called "Knocks Me Off My Feet" by the famous Stevie Wonder?) and gave me the opportunity to say, more than once, "DAAAAAMN, Baby is FINE!"

I'm a major fan of Djimon Honsou (I hope I spelled it correctly), and he was all OVER that screen! You GO boy! Only thing, he's looking much thinner since In America... still beautiful though. Anyone know if he's married?? He's got to be a fascinating conversationalist, imagine. Now THAT is a fantasy- having a lunch with Djimon Honsou... boy...

Anyway. Gotta go or I really WILL be late even after leaving an HOUR ahead of time. The things I do for cash.


Friday, April 08, 2005

What a difference a day makes

Mmmmmmmmmm. Today is not the same as day'fo'yesterdy.

After retrieving my acceptance letter from the office where Sapientis has been holding it hostage I don't even know how long, I find that I need to send $500, non-refundable, to CU in order for them to hold my place.

Bout an hour later I found out I actually have to pay taxes (as opposed to getting a refund) for the first time in my life ever ever ever. Boy what a time for that particularly unopportune surprise.

The upshot is that God will allow me to find about $800 before next Friday, or I won't be going to my dream skool.

*SIGH* I'm struggling but ima keep the faith! If it is for me, I will have it! And if it isn't, I'll receive peace about the whole thing. I need to stay in touch with reality on this. I can feel my stress level up. I wish I had some access to summa' dat sexual healing my man Marvin sings about, but then... nah, don't need any other complications in my life. Right? Right? I keep telling myself this. Freedom is good. A good man is hard to find. And a hard man.... right, ahem, I was saying...

On another note-
I have a coupla students who haven't really shown their faces in my classroom since January. One of them yesterday had the nerve, I mean, the bald-faced temerity, to drag his mama up to the school. Why? you ask. Why, so that his mother could beg me to give the child a 'special' project so he could pass into high school.

This is a student who, aside from his non-attendance, has 'tried' to cuss me several times, has threatened me, and, mind you, is taking 8th grade English when he's enrolled in another grade. This child has earned no favors from me, but what really kicked it was that he literally hadn't shown his nose hairs in my classroom in three months! And was sitting there with some heavy attitude.
I told his mama to her face that it wouldn't be ethical for me to help her wayward, hardheaded child again, since the terms of the agreement I actually made with him last semester included his daily attendance this semester. She tried for the sympathy, telling me that she didn't want to have to pay for more than one class this summer, but as far as I'm concerned, if she were that worried she'd have made sure Junior's behind was warming his seat and not sassing me.

I'm still indignant over that mess. I mean, where do people get off? I love teaching if only because it really helps me understand the roots of the social problems around here.

I was gonna watch be cool, but I feel so stressed I think I might go curl up with a good book instead. I haven't had a Fridy off in a while, so I should take advantage. Especially since PB took advantage of me again and gave me Sat and Sun worknights. I shouldn't complain, and I wouldn't if I weren't so impossibly tired.

I've complained a lot lately so I'll be out with a shout to my girls Tamika, Riri, and SharonSmiley and to Toto for enduring more than this over their cell phones. MUCH LOVE LADIES!

tacatin tacato, este cuento se acabo!

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Tis Official...

... i was accepted to the Mailman School at Columbia!


I'm excited! Euphoric. Columbia has been my dream school for a while now, and I wasn't sure they'd look at my application again after I didn't go two years ago... first step in the master plan is complete. Now I just have to get this degree, complete my MSN/CNM, and get some bizness-administration experience so I can start up my clinic. THAT is really the point in all this, and the reason why I'm looking at being in school what feels like fuh-EVAH...

Can't WAIT to live in NYC even though ima miss portareeco like none other. Oooh the bittersweetness of it all.

Still I can't front like all is decided. I haven't decided whether to defer a year ( financial aid in these times being what it is) or just take the plunge. My fam is decidedly NOT as enthusiastic as I am, but then, everybody was wanting me to come back south of the Mason-Dixon. All in good time. I still don't know what Emory has decided.

Which makes it even harder to finesse the ending of this year as I know I'm supposed to. I have to face the music here. La directora no esta feliz conmigo, por todas las depresiones que he pasado en los ultimos dos meses. It all boils down to the fact that i LOATHE the whole class-prep/planification processes here, and she's pushing them big time. And the woman is quite formidable. I have to say I'm a lil intimidated by the thought of going up to her and prostrating myself in order for her to understand what's been going on.

Still, she is only a woman and God is God. That doesn't really matter much anymore.

Wow, I'm up to five friends on friendster y to'o (love to David y Kabo for the expression)...

I've decided Porfirio has to go. I didn't go out with him due to the fact that work obligations are punishing enough right now... but I've been avoiding it anyways cuz somewhere deep in my head i know he ain't right. And unlike Toto, I cannot change into one of those user chickees who let dudes wine and dine when I KNOW he ain't goin' no further. Y no hay mas oportunidades. La gente se portan como que una oportunidad es algo que yo les debo. Al contrario, acceso a mi persona esta RESTRINGIDA! And I like it like that! Y que!