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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Looking At The World With My Sunglasses’ Off

Today was an ordinary day for me. Waking up, making things ( wo)manifest into my life. Every now again there are obstacles that I must overcome.  Like this morning, my electricity was disconnected yesterday. I knew it was coming, I haven’t paid my bill since October and there was no need  for me to call NES and try to make arrangements, because I knew I could not keep any commitments.  I had utilized the one time social service help for the year. I don’t to anyone’s church, mosque, or temple in this matrix. My money has been slow, trying to keep my ship afloat. Yes, I am dealing with some life issues, however,  I know  this temporary set back will change so I remain positive and “keep it movin”. So, this morning, I woke up at 7am, did my daily restroom rituals in cold water, meditated, envisioned my electricity being restored,  and drank my water and headed off to get my service turned back on. I put on my sunglasses because the sun was very bright and began walking. I stopped at Harpers Restaurant to indulge in a very unhealthy breakfast. I talked myself into it, “Hell you will walk it off today, besides you will start your detox after your birthday” So, I ordered coffee, grits, hash browns and fish…yes fish! I said.” fuck it today!”  I had to send the hash browns back because they were cold and old. As I ate the rest, I charged my phone, texted a couple friends, and reflected on how my day would turn out. 
Walking up Jefferson I go. I received a call from a dear brotha friend of mine who was able to help me see something else on another personal matter.  As I walked up to Rosa Parks and Jefferson to Regions Bank on the corner. I withdrew my remaining balance of $200 to pay an electric bill that required $305.10 to reconnect. I already knew I could not give them all of it because a Sista has to eat and black bean chili was on my menu since I could not prepare it yesterday. I left Regions and went to the NES Customer Service Station on Monroe and 9th all for the customer service agent to politely tell me I would have to go to the Church St Main Office to make payment arrangements or pay the full amount of the bill. So I headed out to Jefferson  S. again with my sunglasses on to catch the next bus downtown. I purchased an all day MTA Bus pass. I stopped and purchased a homeless news paper, and entered onto the bus #29. I reflected on my friends who came to me within in the last few days seeking a ear and shoulder to cry on because they too are going through some life altering changes. I looked around the bus and saw many things but I was the only one with sunglasses on. I saw a man sippin on a bottle of brandy, I  started to ask him to slip some in my coffee, and decided that would not be a good idea. I saw a lady I passed on Jefferson St. three times, on the same bus.  Finally I made it downtown to transfer to the #10 bus to take me to NES Main Office. I had made up in my mind that all I could give them to reconnect my service would be $150. I waited to speak to a customer service representative and after speaking with her supervisor; my service would be reconnected for $166.78. I had it so I paid. With about $15 left, I could stop by the farmers market on my way home. As I went back out to the bus stop with my sunglasses on, an older gentleman who was on the #29 with me had the same disconnect notice except his power was not disconnected like mine. He was an older gentleman who shared with me that he had been unemployed for over a year. All of this was new to him. I asked him about going into business for himself. His reply was; ” how can I do that? All I know how to do is work for someone else and they are not hiring anyone my age these days.” The #10 come back to pick us up, and I get off on 5th Street to walk to the Farmers’ Market with my sunglasses on. I went to my favorite vendor and

friends at Hardy’s Produce. I saw 6 over ripe tomatoes on a table, I asked, “Brotha Hardy, what’s wrong with these tomatoes? He replied, “Oh Sista T, they are too ripe to sell”. I said, “ I will kindly take them off your hands”.  I purchased some onions, green peppers and tangerines. My purchase of the bag full of produce came to $5. I love Hardy’s Produce, they always take care of me.
So I proceeded to walk up Rosa Parks with bag of produce in tow, and forgot to put my sunglasses on. Someone honked the horn. “Beeeeeppppp Beeeeeeppp, Do you need a ride? I’m one of your Face Book Friends, I know that hair anywhere”. I  didn’t think anyone would recognize me walking up Rosa Parks. But my sunglasses were off, now I am exposed and transparent.  Anyway, “No Sista, I am on my morning stroll, I just left the Farmers’ Market and I am on my way to Kroger’s.” She said, “Is it far?” I said, No, I’m close by” she waved and went on. I wondered who she was, I flipped my mine to my Face Book Friends, and I thought to myself, I bet that is Andrea, and it was.  Anyway I continued my walk to Kroger on Monroe.
Looking at the world before me, with my sunglasses ON; I saw broken glass, homeless people, and sad eyes. With my sunglasses OFF, I see a beautiful people with lost hope, no determination and no will. I also see those who just don’t give a damn. Those who don’t have a clue, and to be honest why should they? No one is sensitive to the needs of others until they have to walk in those same shoes. It is up to each individual to create their own sustainability, so why not have  enough compassion and help someone else along the way? You don’t have to, but it would be a nice thing to do.
Now I am walking with both pair of those shoes with my sunglasses off. I’m sequencing my eyes so I don’t go blind by the rays of the sun. I enter Kroger’s. I introduced myself to the store manager, who’s name is Joe, who happen to be standing at the front door as I entered. I said, “Hi Joe, My name is Trazana (as I extended my hand to shake his), I just came from the Farmers’ Market and purchased produce, but they put it in a Kroger bag so I am going to check my bag in a the customer service counter”. He looked mighty puzzled and said, “thank you”. I checked my bag in at the customer service desk. I finished my shopping with the $10 I had left.  I continued my walk back to Jefferson St.  to head home. I waited for the bus with my sunglasses off. I am smiling knowing that this morning although a bit irritated, everything I set out to do today (wo)manifested. I know that the day is not lost and I find it an honor to help others to see the world with their sunglasses off. Everyone I encountered today helped me with my mission today, and if I had kept my sunglasses on, I may not have been able to see the blessings. As long as I have breath and good health, I can do anything!  Who knows what tomorrow will bring. My water bill is due next, my rent is past due. Having my sunglasses on I wasn’t transparent. People could not recognize me. My eyes are the portal to my soul, and I there I stay hidden. Keep it real and let others know you are a “UNIVERSAL Woman”, a “GODIS” who is an a hue-(wo)man body. I write this because even the strongest of us go through things, be it financial, spiritual, relationships ect. We have problems, in order to overcome them, we have to be transparent, take off our sunglasses and see the world for what it is. We need each other; we need to make each other accountable. We need to our system work for us together.

My grandfather who will soon be an 105 years old once told me, “you will never be able to get over the system, you must learn how to maneuver through it, in order to live and be happy” . I see that now. I know so many others are dealing with same problems, but with my sunglasses off, I can see clearly and know I can overcome that too. You must discover who you are and what you are. Don’t let life beat you down to the point that you can not see your future. I am an advocate for healthy living, green jobs, ecoprenuership, and community and know these are our keys to get us out of this mess in the matrix. Owning your own business takes time, due diligence ,perseverance, determination, and patience. I am not going to lie, this is hard work.  You must do what you need to do to survive for yourself and your family without maliciously harming others along the way.
In a few weeks I will be going back into an office setting.  This has been the most fulfilling, exciting, challenging, and evolutionary year of my life.  I would not have been able to do anything without support from so many beloved friends and family, especially my mother and children. Another Avenue Cultural Resource Center will still stand and continue, and the decision to go back to a 9-5 is only temporary. I need to recharge and renew energy, which is money ,until I begin law school in August.  Everyone must come to their own reality, find your own truth, but do so with your sunglasses off.

Thankh you for reading, and I hope having my sunglasses off helps someone too.
Peace, Love, and Light!

Thursday, December 8, 2011



The Porcelain Project 2011 is a social enterprise initiative of Another Avenue Cultural Resource Center, that was made possible by Fox Farms.