Saturday, June 18, 2011

My Block

When I look back on my childhood years and cruise neighborhoods that I have no connection with whatsoever it dawns on me that my block wasn’t like too many other blocks. There were 4 girls on my street and about…no wait…there were 5 girls on my street…I forgot about Rosemarie…the Italian girl. Damn…she was something indeed. Hmm? Oh right, right…back to what I was saying…5 girls and almost 20 dudes. The bulk of us were within the same age range. We did everything. We played two-hand touch football and wiffle ball in the street and tackle football in the park with no equipment. (Dumb, I know.) We hung out on the steps on the corner. We hung out on stoops. We went swimming in my pool…but not everybody and not all at once. We made efforts to stop using profanity by punching in the arm, anyone who cursed. We rode bikes together. We did freestyle tricks in the street. We all went in the house promptly at 3 o'clock on Saturday afternoons to watch the Kung-Fu flicks for an hour. We did everything - except go to the same school. I went to a Catholic school and they went to public schools. Around the time of junior high and on into high school, their focus was primarily on getting girls to do nasty things with them in someone’s house while their parents were away at work. Now, I’m not going to lie to you and say that I didn’t have any type of desire to do the same thing. I did. But I had some strict parents and a whole lot of NO experience and NO inclination as to how one even commences a mission of such magnitude. So all I could do was listen to exaggerated stories of boasting and adolescent sexual prowess. Always listening and never speaking. I was the quiet one.

One summer, the next door neighbors’ niece and nephew came to visit for a few weeks. Her name was Daya. She was my age. She was from Maryland. And she was really cute.

I don’t remember how we got to talking. I’m 99.9% positive that it was she that initiated the conversation. At an early age, I had the art of “ignoring a girl but at the same time being completely aware of every move she made” down to a science. I was good.

Now even though she started things off, it was me that asked her to the movies. She said yes and that Saturday we caught a matinee. It was a little bit of a walk, but it was a beautiful summer day so all was good. We headed out around noon passing my boys across the street on the corner. At this point, they’ve all said something to Daya in the previous days so they all knew her. Not one of them asked us where we were going because they all assumed that we were likely only headed to the corner store. Little did they know (and me too for that matter) I was headed out on my first date.

We talked about everything. She talked and I listened. I talked and she listened. She told me about her dreams of being a singer. She even sang for me on the walk back. She had the most incredible voice. I showered her with compliments but at 13 there was but so much my limited vocabulary could convey to her. Luckily for me, it was more than enough.

Now, if you were to ask me what movie we saw, I'd have to be honest with you. I haven't a clue. Something PG rated. Or maybe we were daring and saw an explicit PG-13 flick. But all in all, we were gone for about 4 hours…maybe more. It felt like an eternity in boy years. By then, my boys were somewhere else on the block doing boy things. I could see them out of the corner of my eye nudging each other with elbows, staring with facial expressions that read, “Oh snap”. My face? Texas Hold' Em Style. Even though it's nothing for me to pull it off now, back then it felt like the most difficult thing.

Fast forward an hour or two later. I was in the house watching some TV when my parents came home. They told me that they saw the girl from next door on the corner with the boys from the block. I guess they were just looking out for me and didn’t want me to get my hopes up with her. But I knew what I was doing. Everything that I knew and enjoyed to do now with a woman all started from that one summer’s day.

It was all I needed.

"We conversated, made her laugh, yeah you know me bro.
Even though I know the steelo, she wild sweet, yo"

Mos Def - Ms. Fat Booty


Southerngirrl said...

"Give me a day in the life of you
You smile with contemplation
Startin' off the evenin'
With some pure conversation.

Boogie Monsters - Honey Dips in

...awww ... such a sweet story.. I LIKE. Made my heart smile.

♛ FWB said...

Hope to see you in the chat tomorrow (8pm eastern)! =]We're discussing and debating it all out. Be there to set the record straight!

We LOVE all that you have to say here on your site =].

<3 FWB