Musings of a Postmodern Negro

"During times of war, hatred becomes quite respectable, even though it has to masquerade often under the guise of patriotism."- Howard Thurman

Location: United States

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Walking in the Valley of the Suburban Death-Matrix

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me.

This does have a happy ending contrary to the title of this short musing/rant.

I am walking through the streets of my neighborhood. My very own surburban death-matrix. I don't know my neighbors. Well...I only know one neighbor. I used to know a couple of'em, but one went to Federal prison and the other went to the State pen.. The point being that I don't know my neighbors as well as I should. Speaking of neighbors, my kids were in an uproar when a kid a couple of houses down decided to play basketball on their goal without asking. I instructed them on the fine art of neighborly love. I told them to put their basketball up in the garage next time. That way...he won't be able to play basketball here anymore without asking. I might have clued you in as to why I don't know my neighbors.But I remembered my kiddie days in Birmingham, Alabama. Those were different times ( the 80's). Back in those days basketballs, footballs (especially the nerf kind), wiffle ball bats, and other recreational items were all community property. Of course we didn't use wiffle balls. Those were normally lost in the woods. We'd use rocks. That was part of my life-training from being raised in a black working class neighborhood...make something out of nothing. So in my retro-spection I changed my mind as to what they should do about this fiasco with DaeShon's use of the basketball goal. I told them to let him use it. To their chagrin I told my boys to play with him. DaeShon is a rather rotund little fella. He's about the same age as my third child, Abraham (7). DaeShon gets picked on alot because of his weight and some of the kids don't want to play with him. Well...cause he is a little whiny (so is one of my kids which I won't mention for fear of retribution from my wife). Plus DaeShon doesn't have adult male presence at his home. His mother appears to be a single mom. So my third, Abraham, plays with him. They play basketball together and other recreational and imaginative activities (e.g. digging lakes in my backyard!). Its all love. And ultimately that's what this is all about. So while I walk through the Suburban death-matrix I do see love in the midst of broken homes, neighbor-less neighbors, lawn-fetishsizers, drive ways parked with SUV's, and suburban teenage wannabe hip-hop thugs. I see this love, this agape love in the midst of brokeness. And while we walk through this suburban death-matrix I know the Lord is with us. And while the Lord is with us we will be with those that share our brokeness.


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