Little Golden Book

Over the weekend I attended a networking event and I must say, it was a drive and time well spent, given that I had not attended such an event in quite a while, it was long overdue. I encountered a quote/tweet/FB post from that event that reminded me of a story. The message was this…Don’t beg for support. Marinate on that for a minute, if you will. Don’t beg for support. 4 little words, so powerful. Reminded me of a story…The Little Red Hen.

The Little Red Hen is the story of a hen on a farm who finds some wheat grains and asks for help to plant, mill, tend, harvest, bake and ultimately eat the wheat/bread. The cat, dog and duck all empathically decline to assist Little Red Hen… “Not I” they each replied when she asked “Who will help me?”. It is not until all the work has been done and the result is a nice hot loaf of fresh, organic wheat bread, that the cat, dog and duck go from negative to positive, with an “I will.” To their surprise, Little Red Hen gives them the business and eats all the bread herself. Moral of the story…those who show no willingness to contribute to a product do not deserve to enjoy the product. Now, that moral is stretching it a bit because we all aren’t really able to contribute to all the products we like, which is why we pay for them but the point is, Little Red Hen was begging for support and it wasn’t until the very end, when all the hard work had been finished that others were willing to help her. Come to think of it, I think Little Red Hen was the original Keith Sweat 🙂

We were created to be supportive; a help meet/mate but somewhere in the industrial millenia, being supportive became de classe, taboo for some reason. When we see a person doing well, why shouldn’t we offer to spread the word, lend a hand or do whatever we can in support of that person, if it is within you to do so? What is to be lost by you telling a friend about the good works of another? Are we so prideful and envious that we cannot be bothered to part our lips to enlighten someone about the goings on of an up and coming friend?

Things blow up, become successful, shoot off the charts based on one thing… word of mouth. Somebody either bought it or had it given to them, liked it and either told someone else or that someone else saw it and wanted to have it and thus the cycle of success begins and continues. Women of all sizes couldn’t stop talking about Spanx and look at Sarah Blakely now. Imagine if no one ever said anything about the magic body enhancers, where would she be today? We all need support, in some form or another, it doesn’t cost you anything to tell someone about what someone else is doing. Are you jealous because you aren’t doing it? Well, maybe you were meant to do something else. Who knows, the person you tell might be interested and that could lead to another mutually beneficial relationship. Poor Little Red Hen, she was begging for help days on end with that wheat but in the end, her revenge was sweet or at least hot and fresh. At times I’ve found myself donning my Little Red Hen cape, looking with Pound Puppy eyes for others to support me by telling a friend but alas, like Little Red Hen, I was greeted with “Not I” albeit silent/lack of action responses.

Who will help me? Is there not a one? Judging from that quote/tweet/FB post, apparently there IS not a one. Sad, because success, like food, is best when shared.

Who wants more bread?

Creatively and Openly Insane

Anyone who is creative and honest with themselves will tell you, it is hard being a genius. No, I’m not full of myself nor do I have an inflated ego. Being creative comes with a unique set of challenges that most find, irritating. For me, the insanity is the drought season. Oh, I have plenty to say and write about but for some reason when I’m done, it’s not to my liking. A chef will slowly add seasonings, careful not to overdo it, less they be left with something too salty, sweet or worse, downright inedible.

When I have pen to paper or fingers to keys, I chuckle about the struggles of Mozart, Beethoven, Michaelangelo and Michael Jackson; I can only imagine what that creative insanity looked like but I totally get the passion. Some may think I’m a flake, not serious about my craft because I go for extended periods of time without writing. Writing is a daily presence for me, it is the sharing that drives me insane. See, sharing requires acknowledging and accepting a certain level of vulnerability and let’s be honest, vulnerability isn’t high up on the list of things to do, but do it we must. I struggle with vulnerability. As an artist I’m sensitive about my ish and as such leery of sharing but hiding ones light under a bush creates nothing but a brush fire. Some will get and accept it, some won’t and it’s all good, as long as your light is shining it’s not for everyone to see. I think I need to go to hoarders anonymous, I hoard my talent/gift, plenty of people do and it’s all because we either can’t be or won’t allow ourselves to be vulnerable.

Jesus was vulnerable. Can’t get any more vulnerable than naked on a cross and yet there he hung, praying for those who hung him. Yeah, I’m not there…yet. I understand the need for and appreciate what being vulnerable can do for myself and someone else. Dr. Maya Angelou (God rest her soul) said “If you get, give. If you learn, teach.” Well, I’ve been given much and gave a lot. I’ve learned much but haven’t taught as much as I should. Teaching requires a certain level of vulnerability but the result is a light that shines bright for the whole world to see.

I must remember that what was given to me was done so that I might give it away. So glad we aren’t known for brush fires in VA.

TourdeCure – Team GetMended.com

Hello and Happy New Year.

Yes, I know it’s been what seems like ages since you feasted upon my writing goodness but fear not, I have been working diligently on my book and a play, so your patience is appreciated.

I am writing today to ask for your support. My team and I are riding to cure Diabetes and we need your support. If you have it to give and feel led to give, please consider supporting my team with a donation. If you do not have it to give, please pray for our team and all the TourdeCure riders that we will all be successful in reaching our goals.

Here’s how to help:

Online donations:
1. Make a donation to one of our riders. Go to http://tour.diabetes.org/site/PageServer?pagename=TC_homepage
Click WHY RIDE
Select MAKE A DONATION

2. Select Search for a Team
Type in GetMended.com (upper/lowercase is not required)

3. Click on GetMended.com (team page appears)
Click on Donate to a Rider
Select the Rider you want to donate to (follow the prompts) or you can donate to the Team if you think we are all just so AWESOME, no need to choose!! 

Tell your family, friends, enemies and everyone in between. I’m helping the world GetMended by riding for a cure.

Thanks a million!!

40 days IN the world

Good Evening Mr. and Mrs. America and all the ships at sea. Well it’s been a long time and while I meant to leave you, I did put up my BRB sign. Our definitions of RB may have been varied just a bit. Anywhoo. Me and my wonderful pen are back and we want to tell you of our time IN the world. The Lenten Season came to an end on Holy Saturday – that’s March 30 for you non-Cadbury claiming folk and with it the start of the Easter Season. Technically it was 46 days but the Sabbath (Sunday) isn’t counted but my Sabbath is Saturday but I’m flexible. During my 40 days IN the world, fasting and abstinence were adjectives, verbs and acquaintances that weren’t really in my vocabulary or on my Christmas list. Being the writer I am, had to do a little research and so began my days IN the world. Fasting and abstaining, two completely different INGings and despite that old folklore, doing something for 21 days does not necessarily equal a habit. For me, it was like hurdling and I’ve never done that a day in my life. Stumble, fall and stagger did I, but I pressed forward. Some may get all my inferences, some won’t, but as always, my goal is for you to GETMENDED.

I learned/witnessed/interpreted/thought and read a lot during my time IN the world. I learned…

That those who profess not to believe but engage in the celebration of such days (Christmas, Easter) regardless of how commercial we’ve made it, aren’t non-believers at all, they are believers who may be ashamed to believe out loud

That technology (email, text, FB, Twitter, etc.) can turn you into a coward

That imposing your beliefs on others (Pro – whatever, Anti-whoever, definition, schmefinition) is waterboarding and you and you alone must answer to any charges against you, regardless to who you stand before in judgment, and no, you do NOT have the write to remain silent

That if you don’t want to play Russian Roulette, don’t ask loaded questions

That when people feel you have been less than kind to them (maybe you were, maybe you weren’t) they say “God bless you” or “You have a blessed day” as if that is supposed to wound you

That when you remove unnecessary distractions and detractors, even for a little while, life and everything in it goes that much smoother

That when you deny the flesh (and it ain’t all about sex) the mind gets clear and the flesh REfreshed

That the more you know, try to know, want to know; the more tolerant you become

That in the winter, nearly every woman (if she’s smart and doesn’t want to put a wool hat on) resembles a Muslim woman

That change is just something you weren’t expecting that you have to get used to but we expect it every 4 to 8 years

That mothers, in most cases, get more PROPS than fathers, but the most important mother is rarely given her just due

That people want to tell you what to do, when to do it, how to do it, where to get it and how much to pay for it, ask your opinion and repeat the cycle

That when you talk about death, particularly your own, people tend to think you have Suicidal Ideations but I don’t recall hearing that term in It’s a Wonderful Life
That I don’t know of 1 person who would take a beating (The Passion) for anyone else – save a small child, let alone for someone who doesn’t like you

I could go on and on about my 40 days IN the world, but I think you get the picture. Now, 50 days of Feasting (the Easter Season) is here. Don’t think I’ll be indulging in anything I gave up during the 40, but I did have a Sonic milkshake today and almost went into a sugar coma. Not sure, what if anything you did during the Lenten Season but I did a whole lot of something doing little to nothing. Shalom.

Is that all? #confusedface

I’m really not the type to say I told you so, but after the word I heard Sunday 2/3/13 –
(Dr. S.D. Nelson @Abyssinia Baptist Church gave the business!) –
this TOLD YA! (little kid voice) feels all right.

“This ain’t a feel good everything’s fine sing-along. You got the wrong song” (Nashville)

I, am greedy. Yep, I said it. Greeeeedddddyyy. Yes, I know it’s a sin, but let me explain before you condemn me to spend eternity picking up cigarette butts from the side of the road with a pair of mini tweezers, wearing a bear suit costume in the middle of summer in Phoenix. Ahem (in clergy voice), turn with me to Luke 17: 7-10, you nonbelievers too!

The text talks about being a servant. Now, we all know this country was built on the backs of servants, so we all know the meaning of servant and serve. We are all servants. Everyday we serve (whatever you do for a living, you’re serving) and the majority of the time, by the time we get home, we are all served out. You get off work, you want to go home and relax, go to happy hour and relax, whatever it is you want to do when you get off you want to be the Master because you’ve been serving all day long and you are tired. Ahhh, but your service is just getting started. The service of the servant must be sustained – meaning, don’t nobody care how hard you worked all day, all I know is, when you get home, I want my time, your service to me and vice versa. You parents know what I’m talking about. Work all day, kids don’t care nothing about the work you brought home, they want to play. You owe them your service. When you don’t sustain your service you are neglecting those you are supposed to serve and that just ain’t right SMH. If you’re at a restaurant and the server neglects you, you would likely complain to the manager. In order to maintain a steady flow of good tips, the server must sustain by maintaining a steady flow of service.

Same applies in relationships, whatever kind of ship they may be. A servant (us) whose service (working, spending time, kissing, hugging, laundry, cooking, cleaning, reading books, giving baths, wiping noses, doing hair, etc) is not sustained (reciprocated where applicable – paycheck and all the above) may soon seek other employment. We get haughty because we want recognition for our service. Huh? You want me to acknowledge and give you credit for something you’re SUPPOSED TO DO? Human service is owned by 7-11; open 24/7.

The service you give someone else is of no benefit to me, I need my own and vice versa. The service you gave your employer is irrelevant when it comes to service to your spouse, kids, family, church, community, etc. and vice versa. Don’t care what kind or how much service (time, energy, etc.) you gave (fill in the blank). Whuhdatgottodowitme? (2Chainz voice) I was so busy at work, I didn’t get to eat lunch – and? I had to go check out something then go do something for my mom/kids/church – and? We went out the other day – and? “You gotta get yours but fool I gotta get mine” (Snoop)

I know it may sound and seem a bit harsh but it’s the truth and the truth is sometimes harsh. Every one and every thing requires its own service.

What I/you/they ate and drank yesterday will not, can not sustain me/you/them for today and the same goes for the service. I’ve been saying that for years! I KNEW I was right (fist pump/swing in the air, Ray Lewis dance!)

Some of us are probably going to, if you haven’t already, be called to the office to talk about our service, or lack thereof. This is not the economy one wants to be unemployed in, soooo, if you’ve had some complaints about your service (given or received) you better get your act together, don’t you ever get to thinking your irreplaceable!

You’re Fired. Garsonu! (finger snap)