History in the making with NPR

I had an opportunity to interview my mother, while the NPR Story Corps was in Tulsa during October 23-November 15th. Our stories will be kept on a CD in the Library of Congress. History in the makingJ

My mother (Mawit) was the first African-American Homecoming queen for Northwestern Oklahoma State University. We talked about my great-great grandfather Reverend Jackson Henry Hodge ( he was A.M.E minister) She shared a story of her uncles Ennis and Ellis Hodge taking apart a Model T Ford and then putting it back together. Wow, her uncles were smart. She shared about her Christian faith. What I learned is that every family has a story tell. Sometimes, it is easy think heavily on the negative side of family history. It was hard to believe we could only talk for 45 minutes. Overall, the experience was like having our own radio show.

Are you a singleist?

Definition of a singleist is that once you get married you kind of separate yourself from your single friends.

Now, I understand the desire to be with your mate—or your soul mate. Whatever the newfangled term may be for you to describe your special someone. It is important not to alienate your single friends. Don’t see your single friend as the one who has no life. Sure, they may be available on weekends and weeknights. This doesn’t mean they are at your beck and call.   “Hey, you have no life can you watch my pet Boppie for five days. “ Your single friend may say to yes and just to please you. In their head they are thinking, “You are such a doosenburger.”

Okay, now you have become singleist when you decide not to host a girl’s night once you have been dating Prince Kirk (only if you are girl) for guys Princess Leia—whatever her name is. Your single friends have been there for you through the ups and downs. Now, I understand you may have to become a singleist if your friend has become Deviant Debbie or Pathetic Patrick. Dump them immediately. Open the door and let them out. When they try to come back—just say you are busy.

  1. 1. To prevent from being a singleist plan days or even mornings to be with that single friend. You can do this once a month. Especially, if you don’t have kids, right now. For guys, do the same—go hunting or something. It is about keeping a connection.

Then for the women, you invite Loyal Lisa back in the fold, when Prince Kirk goes on trip. It is truly difficult to for Lisa, to tell you everything. In her head she is thinking, “Why did she wait this long to talk to me.” It is now hard for Loyal Lisa to reconnect with you.

  1. To prevent from being a singleist, tell them how thankful that they are in your life. Don’t wait to be thankful, when you need them to be in your wedding or other events.

When every night, becomes couple night-then you allow distance to grow between you and your friend. Then all of sudden —you invite your single friend back into your life, once they start dating Handsome Prince Harry or Almost Princess Cressida.

  1. Curb the Physical Display of Affection in front of us. We don’t need to know how sexually compatible you are. Find a bedroom—or something. Really, we got it. You are so in love each other. Betcha wouldn’t you act like that in front of the pastor. Maybe you would.
  2. Treat us the same whether or we have a significant other or not. Don’t forget that you were once single. Stay connected with us. Check on us; find ways to hang out with us. Don’t put us in the unfixable box—or a category.
  3. Love us and don’t abandon us. Once you abandon us and don’t take the time to include us in your life. We will probably give up on you. If you say “You are important to me,” then find a way to keep us important. We want be there to celebrate your happy moments. The point is to be friendly to your single friend in all seasons. Don’t become a singleist.

My wonderland

I had to tell him good bye

He was like a stye

He stayed with me

He crushed my spirit

My teacher did not hear it

Had I lost the spirit?

I could no longer bear it.

Destroyed my peace on Southwest Boulevard.

How could you go out with someone named Gerard

How dare he write me off?

My tears rolled onto his cuff

My pain struck me down

My face in a frown

My pain faster than a train

I needed him to be mine

Ignored the ravine

I had fallen in

The hole in Alice in Wonderland

Would I ever be able to get back up

He had crept into in rabbit hole

The hole of my heart

The Shadows of Life

This line speaks to me every time, I watch this scene. I hate to say how many times I’ve watched Two Towers. Well enough about me. Let’s examine this …too long have you sat in the shadows.. Gandalf speaks to King Théoden whose mind is possessed by Sauron. What shadows are in your life—or how long have you sat in the shadows. There are so many shadows in our life.

Shadows of insecurity-I will never be good enough.

Shadows of control- You will do what I ask you to do.

Shadows of fear- Will the economy ever get better?

Gandalf says to King Théoden, “I will release you. After Théoden realizes he has been under the influence too long. He realizes his son Theodred is dead. Eomer his nephew is gone. Then he looks at his assistant Grima Wormtongue. “You would have me crawling on all fours like a beast.” This is an example of what shadows do to our lives. It makes us realize what we have lost and what we have missed.

Being kept in the shadows keeps us from recognizing the ones we love and how our loves ones love us. Once we are out of the shadows we are able to move forward in life.

Whatever shadows are in your life, and you are able to conquer them on your own. Then do so! If not then seek help. Please release yourself from the shadows.

The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. Perf. Elijah Wood and Sean Astin. 2002. Film.

Girl from Darfur

The silk smoothed against her skin.

how many fingers can she count then.

Baubles, beads, and bows array her neck-

For who knew she was so chic.

Her beauty was known from afar- dark and

lovely from Darfur.

She stands poised with a smile-

-behind her were the trials

crimson lips shaped like origami-

–bright as apple-red Fuji

Ah, lovely as bones- She spoke-

-let me have one more last look

Pirouettes and bows-one last twirl

–Oh-what a world