By: Ruth Maynie
“We’re on the wrong train again.”
Everyone knew it, everyone was watching curiously. Where on this train would there be a stop where such a thicket of blacks would get off? What kind of event wasn’t heavily reported in newspapers and on television that would draw these blacks to dress up and go to?
Maybe Ludacris is shooting a ghetto life music video somewhere out west near the closed down projects? Maybe one of those supermarkets is doing a mass hiring? Maybe they won’t be hired, so they won’t again interrupt this usually peaceful commute. Maybe when they make it, it’ll be too late and they won’t make the cut, or maybe they won’t make the cut because of their clothes, their words, their unimpressive stature and basic way of life. Maybe the hiring manager will recognize it, cringe as those sitting in the vicinity of this crowd do.
Who can’t read the train? The signs are clearly placed and all state what direction the trains are intended to go in, none of them cryptic—hell, even the platforms speak and remind you of what direction, what line, what train!
They all smell like sweat and aggravation. They all smell unlike the usual smells on the train, where at least if someone is sweaty they sweat the smell of their deodorants or body sprays. They smell like unwashed underarm pubes and fuming colons blocked with undigested pig…they all smell like that, something you pick up when near them. They smell a certain way and no one would dare open a summer event to them when knowing they’ll emit such stench when the sun is high.
To think they even consider wearing white hot pants, their sweating thighs make the white turn a dingy brown, they even sweat the color, they exist in a fume of black and it’s unfortunate for them. They react to modern concerns with a sucking of yellowing teeth appearing pale against the darkness of their swelled, ridiculous lips. They speak in halves, every word only partly complete, partly pronounced as their giant lips smack and slam against each other. You never understand and they condemn you for that. Whatever it is you can’t understand, it’s not worth it, but for some reason when they’re confused you can hear them clearly.
“WE ON THE WRONG TRAIN YA’LL!!!” Followed by an unnecessary booming of cackles and squeals.
Of course, they turn and ask what the right train would be. Of course, they turn to the only other person with a resemblance to their unfortunate race; no one else would take the time to take pity. No one else would even consider violating the idea of teaching a man to fish, as every other race seems to have done for each other. Them, they were given so many fish they remain lost in society, fingers tangled in tangled masses of wool as they attempt to scratch their scalp in confusion. Two blind birds can’t help each other find their way south for the summer, what makes these people think someone of their own race would be help?
And why so much anger when the answer is given? Why always accused of undermining their education, their ability? Every human has an ability to learn, but they don’t seem to have the ability to listen. Tell them “don’t walk” and watch them go running through open traffic, head back, open mouth spouting wails as though they weren’t aware that it might be dangerous to them, that there might be a reason they shouldn’t walk.
Say What has been an awesome experience for me. Say What has allowed me to grow as a writer and a journalist. Learning the dos and don’ts of journalism is very essential for anyone interested in this field. You also grow as a person as well. I can be very withdrawn at times and a bit uneased with taking risk, but I learned in order to a successful journalist you must be prepared for rejection and become passionate about news and your surroundings.
Where is your phone right now? Is it in your pocket? Is it lingering on the contents of your book bag, purse? Is it stuffed in your sock? Is it in your fist? Is it on your desk, somewhere in sight on vibrate due to the company surrounding you? Is it lent to a friend or sibling? Is it in your car? Is it lying at the bottom of a toilet in a public restroom? Is it skidding across the ground in front of your face as your chin hits the pavement? Is it being kept away from you from friends checking your calls? Is it with your parents when the day ends or do you put it on the charger for the next day? Do you know where your charger is? Does the battery charge anymore?
PS: When you think of your phone, what comes to mind. Are they good or bad thoughts?
Opportunities present themselves in mysterious places
Check back to this blog, or syndicate this site, for postings throughout the summer from the Say What Student Editorial Board.