Yesterday was the continuation of a string of just completely beautiful days weather wise. So it was a perfect day to go out and enjoy life.
Now the crazy thing is that I almost didn't even get to get out yesterday... my mom sent a message to do some chores, and being the good boy that I am, I did the chores before I started to prepare for today's festivities. This almost resulted in me not going out because she said that she wanted to go out, and with my brother Kevin having to go to work, this meant that I would be the one to have to stay in and watch my little brother.
FORTUNATELY! My mother came up with a back up plan that would have her take Justin out with her if she went out. Which was awesome. She didn't have to do that. But she did. I really love my mother. Like, she really didn't have to come up with that back up plan. And due to that backup plan, I had an awesome night. I really have to do something special for my mother soon... and I'm not going to wait until May to do either.
Anyway, I stop by my friend Janaya's BBQ. It's a simple gathering of family at the moment, not many people my age are there yet. Unfortunately for that, I had to go soon. I dropped off my basketball, ate a few burgers, some chips, and had some Dr. Pepper for the first time in years... and I left. And I kinda felt bad for leaving... like, I felt like "a typical nigga," so to speak. Furthermore, I realized where I was going and was thinking to myself, Clearly I ate a smidget too much...
Oh well. I hope my local buddies understand. I see them all the time, but I don't get to see Paola much. Nor do I get to ready my poetry much. So this was an opportunity that I felt I should not miss. It was also an opportunity that I thought I was going to be ridiculously late for, but MTA just simply agreed with me and allowed me to get there much earlier than I thought I would get there.
Note: Wishful thinking kicks ass. I think there is a power in my mind... a power I'm not yet fully harnessing, but... eh, whatever... continuing.
So I get there at about 8:30pm and the poetry readings hadn't begun yet. I had some or-derbs (that's not how you spell it... it's a French word that I have no idea how to spell), a Smirnoff, met some people, overall quiet like I usually am around new people though, and just chilled till the poetry readings started.
The poetry readings were pretty awesome. There was definitely some talent in there. Basically, the readings were done, filled with emotion and word play. The format of the readings were such that everyone would read one poem, then we'd take a break, then we'd read another poem, then another break, and so on. The Bilini sisters, who hosted the show, started most of the rounds with some pretty intense poetry. What I found really interesting about their poetry was how they would have a theme or a new perspective that I wouldn't have ever thought about. Most of my poetry is simply an outlet of some kind of feeling creatively expressed, but they, amongst others, took it to a new level of subject and perception that I definitely didn't see coming and might explore at a later date.
There was also this poet. He was literally a poet. Like, literally, down to his name. His name is El Poeta and he's pretty awesome. He recited my favorite poem of the night, "Rocket Ship." It was about how a young man sees his dreams and builds a rocket ship to reach his dreams and as he grows older he uses his rocket ship he reaches his dreams but then when he gets real old he realizes that he left everything that he loved for something totally different and is wondering whether or not his rocket ship was worth the ride. I'm obviously not that old yet, but I understood the concept, because I understand that ambition to be more than you ever were, but at the same time, I can't imagine not being able to live with certain things, such as family, friends, and various traditions... things that may change or even disappear the moment you hit the big shiny lights.
There were also poems about gluttony, envy, and lust, poems about sex, loves from the past, present, and future, there was a haiku, there were poems about personal problems and other people's problems... the variety was great. Speaking of variety, it's wasn't all poetry. We had some stand up comedy come up, but it was short lived because he had family matters to tend to, and then we had this one guy come up and simply talk about life. He said something about how a panhandler swindled him for $20 because he was trying to be a good guy and make the lady's day, and then he talked about how women label each other (which they do).
I had read some poetry myself. I brought 5 pieces, but only ended up reading three. One was titled "If Nothing is Forever," one was titled, "Critical," and the other... piece... I read... has multiple titles. In the end, they said it was more like a "monologue-y" "stream of conscious." Which made a whole lot more sense considering the way it came about via the intense feelings that I was experiencing when I wrote it.
One thing I noticed was that my "performance" of my poetry wasn't as intense and as engaging as the other works. I also noticed that my poetry (the first two pieces at least) weren't as long as the other pieces being up there. It was kinda one of those things where I'm like "Wow, am I under dressed for this?" But I thought about it and said, "Fuck that, here I go." I got pretty solid reactions though. All of the poetry was good, so everyone got a round of applause, but admittedly, there were some amazing, amazing pieces read that deserved the hyped up ovations that they received. Still, at the very end, I was able to hear some more personal reactions to my material, and they were very well received. :) It's always nice to hear when people you just met sincerely tell you that what you do... what you create... what you put your heart and soul into... is good.
In between the poetry was food, drinks, music, and bailando. (dancing). My stomach managed to digest enough of the food from the BBQ to be able to try the lasagna, which was really good. It also reminded me that I need to try and learn how to cook lasagna. Actually, I need to try and learn how to cook a lot of things, but that's a different story. Anyway, the lasagna was good. The drinks were good, but I kept it simple because I knew I had a pretty intense trip to make back home (from the Bronx back to Rosedale? late at night? yeah, no way I was OD'ing... I need maximum alertness).
The music... I heard reggae, reggaeton, merengue (!), bachata (!), and probably other stuff. I did a bit of dancing... LIES! I did more than a bit of dancing. I got to dance with Paola and/or Katalina and the Bilini sisters. Paola explained some of the basic differences between salsa, bachata, and merengue, and Maria showed me some basics of merengue. Now? I pretty much merengue like a pro. Okay, not really, but apparently I learned it pretty quickly. I didn't get to merengue with Paola because she was teaching some other guy how to dance, but he totally, totally need the lessons. lol. Still, it puts me one step closer towards my dream of having a Hispanic wife... the idea of getting my wife mad and having her angrily yell at me in Spanish? Nothing short of a turn on.
... nice! ;-)
Like all good things, the night came to an end, and I went home. The trip was long, but quiet, and I got home.