Dream Girls: Part One

I’m in a strange place right now.

I’m laying down, and I can’t move.

I’m not scared, but I long for answers.

I’m in a place of hurt and pain,

Yet my surroundings are the exact opposite.

I look around, and I’m surrounded by black sand.

I look up and the sky is red with pink clouds,

And the sun looks like a big, white light bulb.

It’s bright and intense.

I can hear waves crashing rocks and the black sand.

I naturally assume that I’m on a beach.

 

My vision starts to blur, and I can’t hear the waves anymore.

I can only hear the sound of my heart beat.

Beating faster and faster.

The pain in my chest has intensified,

My throat is swelling up,

Breathing is a struggle,

Death is coming soon.

I know it, but I’m not afraid.

I’m relieved.

Dying on a strange, yet beautiful beach doesn’t sound too bad.

It’s a luxury that not a lot of people have.

Some die in the darkest of places,

Others just die normally in regular places.

We just never know how death will take us.

 

As I have accepted my fate, a woman appears above me.

She kneels down to my level,

And gently touches my face.

There’s something sweet and familiar about her gentle touch.

I wish I could see her clearly.

Her face gets closer to my face.

Our eyes meet, and I think I know who she is.

But I’m not sure.

Our lips are inches away from each other,

She decides to seal them with a kiss.

 

I immediately remember who she is.

She’s the one that got away.

She’s the one that I miss every single day.

She’s the one that had lips like candy.

There’s no one like her.

No one that will ever be like her.

 

After our shared kiss, she gets back up.

She grabs my feet and drags me to the ocean.

I don’t resist.

Once she has me in the ocean, she disappears.

I search for her, but she’s long gone.

The black-sanded beach is nowhere to be found either.

 

I find myself just surrounded by the purple ocean.

I chuckle as I fully submerge myself into the purple ocean.

As I am slowly drowning,

I welcome the calmness of the purple ocean.

I listen to the quietness of the purple ocean.

I can no longer feel the intensity of the sun,

The purple ocean is all I feel now.

The sun fades away from my memory,

Everything turns black.

 

I wake up from a strange dream,

I can’t help but remember.

My mind doesn’t think about the sweet purple ocean,

It doesn’t think about the pure black-sanded beach,

It doesn’t think about the majestic red sky,

Or even the intense white sun,

It only thinks about her.

For she is now a dream girl.

 

This is the end of part one of the Dream Girls series. Be sure to like, share and comment your thoughts on this poem!

I will be posting and sharing part two of “Dream Girls” on Sunday!

 

 

 

 

 

Imagine Her Being a Butterfly

It’s hard to imagine a black woman being a butterfly in this world.
Can you imagine that?
I hope that some of you can, but I struggle to imagine it.


I think about a black woman who protested and risked her life every single day for the justice of a black man.
Unfortunately, that black woman would later be sexually assaulted and murdered by a black man.
Can you imagine that?


Then, I think about a black woman who was sleeping in the privacy and safety of her own home.
Her own home would be mistakenly invaded by the police.
She would then be brutally murdered by the police.
Can you imagine that?


I think about how a black woman’s protection is conditional.
For some black men, a black woman has to meet certain criteria points in order to have their protection and love.
At the same time, she must still be strong.
Never weak, always strong.
A black woman must listen and submit themselves to these black men in order to have some of their protection.
Can you imagine that?

I think about these things and wonder if a black woman can truly be a butterfly.
Can she fly, flutter and be free?
Or will she always be a caterpillar trapped in a unbreakable cocoon?
I would love to see a black woman be a butterfly.
It would be beautiful and glorious, but I struggle to imagine it.


She always has to meet certain standards.
She’s always expected to stand, fight, protest, protect and march.
She’s always getting attacked for doing too little or too much.
I often wonder does she even have the time and opportunity to be a butterfly?
I’m genuinely asking because I have no idea.


Can you be positive about the future of a black woman?
Can you see a black woman be free and exceed expectations?
Can you see her fly high in the sky?
Can you imagine a black woman being a butterfly?

Food For The Dog

A couple named Brian and Lauren are driving home with a car full of groceries.

As they’re driving home, Lauren notices up ahead something unsettling.

It’s at the side of the road.

She tells Brian to pull over.

He listens to her and pulls over.

When they stop completely, he sees what Lauren sees.

 

In front of them, a man is lying on the ground curled up like a ball.

The man is starving and struggling to stay alive.

Next to him, he has a cardboard sign that says “Anything will help.”

There’s also a malnourished dog sitting next to the man.

Lauren notices that the dog is wearing a tag.

She squints to look at the tag, and it reads Max.

 

Lauren looks at Brian and pleads that they help him.

He’s starving and struggling to stay alive.

He needs their help Lauren says.

They have an obligation to help him.

His life is precious and matters to them.

Brian agrees and wonders what they can give him.

Lauren says that two bags of dog food should be enough.

 

Lauren gets out the car with the dog food and places it next to Max.

She tears open both bags of dog food.

Max quickly comes over and starts devouring the food.

For a second, Lauren is happy that she’s able to feed Max.

Then, she realizes that it’s not right with what Max is going through.

Max is abandoned and in harsh conditions.

Max deserves to have a proper owner.

Max deserves a better life than this.

 

Lauren runs back to the car, and Brian smiles at her.

He tells her that they did a good thing for that dog.

Lauren says she knows, but she still feels bad for Max.

Brian understands and assures her that the food should help.

 

Brian starts the car.

They drive away with their car full of groceries.

They feel good for what they did for Max.

They’re thankful that they have plenty of food.

Food for themselves, their kids and their dogs.

For they were able to provide food for the dog.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Father at His Weakest

A man finds out that his father died in his sleep.

He’s surrounded by his wife and children when he discovers the terrible news.

He’s devastated, and he doesn’t know how to contain himself.

How can his father be gone so suddenly?

How can he imagine a life without his father?

Without thinking, he cries.

His wife quickly comes over and tries to comfort him.

He welcomes her embrace, and he still continues to cry.

His daughters start crying as well.

It hurts them to see their father in pain.

He assures them that he’ll be alright, and he still continues to cry.

His sons didn’t know what to do.

They had never seen their father be so emotional and vulnerable.

They had never seen their father have a moment of weakness.

They wondered what did it mean as their father continues to cry.

 

Those boys would later realize that their father was simply being a man.

A man that had lost a father.

A man that needed to cry and mourn for his father.

A man that needed the comfort of his wife and children.

A man that wasn’t afraid to be weak in front of his family.

A man that has integrity, dignity, honor and love in his heart.

A man that always wants to teach his sons the true meaning of strength and courage can come in times of weakness.

Their father was a man at his weakest.

But most importantly, he was a father at his weakest.

 

This poem is dedicated to my father Shawn McNeil. Thank you for never being afraid to cry, being emotional and being vulnerable. Thank you for always teaching me how to be a true man. I love you so much, dad! Happy Father’s day to you and all the good fathers in this world.

 

 

Imagine Her Being a Butterfly

It’s hard to imagine a black woman being a butterfly in this world.

Can you imagine that?

I hope that some of you can, but I struggle to imagine it.

I think about a black woman who protested and risked her life every single day for the justice of a black man.

Unfortunately, that black woman would later be sexually assaulted and murdered by a black man.

Can you imagine that?

Then, I think about a black woman who was sleeping in the privacy and safety of her own home.

Her own home would be mistakenly invaded by the police.

She would then be brutally murdered by the police.

Can you imagine that?

I think about how a black woman’s protection is conditional.

For some black men, a black woman has to meet certain criteria points in order to have their protection and love.

At the same time, she must still be strong.

Never weak, always strong.

A black woman must listen and submit themselves to these black men in order to have some of their protection.

Can you imagine that?

 

I think about these things and wonder if a black woman can truly be a butterfly.

Can she fly, flutter and be free?

Or will she always be a caterpillar trapped in a unbreakable cocoon?

I would love to see a black woman be a butterfly.

It would be beautiful and glorious, but I struggle to imagine it.

She always has to meet certain standards.

She’s always expected to stand, fight, protest, protect and march.

She’s always getting attacked for doing too little or too much.

I often wonder does she even have the time and opportunity to be a butterfly?

I’m genuinely asking because I have no idea.

Can you be positive about the future of a black woman?

Can you see a black woman be free and exceed expectations?

Can you see her fly high in the sky?

Can you imagine a black woman being a butterfly?

 

 

We Are Always Wrong

Throughout history, we have always been wrong in their eyes.

In times of slavery, we were wrong.

In times of Reconstruction, we were wrong.

In times of segregation, we were wrong.

In times of the Civil Rights Movement, we were wrong.

In times of marching, we were wrong.

In times of protesting, we were wrong.

In times of kneeling, we were wrong.

 

When will we ever be right in their eyes?

When will we ever get their support?

When will our anger, frustrations, disappointments and sadness be recognized in their eyes?

I fear we will never know.

I fear that we can never be right in their eyes.

 

So what should we do?

How can we please them with our actions?

How can we make them comfortable with our marching and protesting?

Honestly, there is no way to appease them.

They will always think we are wrong, but it honestly doesn’t matter what they think.

They have no right to tell us how to think or feel for our people.

They have no right to tell us how to march and protest for our people.

They have no right to tell us how to grieve for our people.

They have no right to tell us how to fight for our people.

They don’t own us anymore.

We are not their slaves anymore.

 

Too many black lives have been lost to racism and injustice in America.

Real change is necessary for our people.

Our anger and mourning are justified, don’t let them tell you otherwise.

Justice for our people must come soon.

I’m tired of them telling us to wait, to calm down and to be patient.

That time has long passed.

White Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Island Americans, Italian Americans, Irish Americans, Hispanic Americans and Native Americans, we need your support against them.

Help us fight them and show them that black lives matter.

 

Who am I talking about?

Who are the “they” that I am talking about?

They are the ones with all the power in this country.

They are the ones that have evil and hatred in their hearts.

They are the ones that allow racism and discrimination to run this country.

They are the ones that turn a blind eye to injustice against people of color.

They are the ones that always change the subject when it comes to black lives and police brutality.

They are the ones that quickly tell us that all lives matter.

They are the ones that tell us to let things go.

They are the ones that tell us that they see no color.

They are the ones that tell us to shut up.

They are the ones that tell us that things are better for us now, and we should be grateful.

They are the ones that tell us that we’re wrong in how we peacefully protest.

They are the ones that tell us that we are always wrong.

 

 

 

 

 

The Old Man at the Bus Stop

I wait patiently for my bus at an abandoned mall.

I remember my times at this abandoned yet familiar mall.

I remember the sacred moments I had with family, friends and even a girl.

I especially think about the girl and the spot we shared together.

I miss the spot.

I miss the girl.

I think about those two things too much sometimes,

When I’m at the bus stop.

I long to forget about the paradise I once had in my life.

 

A few drops of rain fall from a gray sky.

It adds a little more sadness into my heart.

I wonder why there can’t be more sunshine in the sky or even in my soul?

I miss the sunshine that I once had in life.

I wish for it, but it’s long gone.

It’s somewhere far away, while I’m in a place of darkness.

A place I fear that I will never escape.

Is escape possible?

As usual, I don’t have an answer.

God really does know how to create a depressing situation.

Enters the old man.

 

I look at the old man, and he seems sad and depressed.

He is a white man with a gray beard.

Then, I see a part of his hat that read “Vietnam” on it.

He’s a veteran, I naturally assume.

I start to feel bad for him

Because it seems like he had suppressed one too many things

That I could never imagine.

That weight of suppression has him looking down at not only the world but also himself.

He is lost and abandoned.

 

The old man looks at me, says hi and gives me his best smile.

I did the same thing as well.

I want to keep my distance and not talk anymore.

Nothing against him, but I’m just comfortable with silence and my own thoughts.

There’s just comfort in being alone.

People just complicate your state of mind.

However, he wants to talk some more with me.

I want to politely tell him that I don’t want to have a conversation

But then I stop myself.

I realize that maybe we both really need this conversation.

Maybe our conversation would have a purpose.

Maybe meeting each other was crafted by God.

Maybe I’m stretching, but I need to find out for myself.

 

Five minutes into our conversation, we’re sharing laughter and smiles.

We’re sharing our emotions and feelings.

We’re sharing anything we can.

I never expected to share so much to him.

I share so many secrets and disappointments

How could I admit and open up so much to a stranger,

When I struggle with being honest with others and myself?

 

He looks at me and asks me when was the last time I cried.

I tell him with ease that it’s been a long time.

Then he tells me to not be afraid to do so.

He was a soldier,

He admits that there were times that he had to cry.

Crying really helped him let go.

 

He pleads for me to cry when I get the opportunity.

Before I can respond, my bus arrives.

I look at him and promise that I will try.

He nods his head, smiles and thanks me for having a conversation with him.

I tell him that it was an honor.

I say goodbye to him and get on the bus.

The bus rides away from the abandoned mall.

And I leave the old man at the bus stop.

 

This poem is dedicated to a veteran that I had a conversation with at a bus stop two years ago. It was one of the most realest conversations I ever had with someone, and I’m so thankful and blessed for that conversation.

Happy Memorial Day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Strangest Compliment: Episode Two

In this episode, I received not one, but two strange compliments from a girl that I consider a friend. The first compliment wasn’t weird or crazy, but it was an unexpected compliment that made me feel some type of way. It was a compliment that she didn’t give to her boyfriend at the time, but she wasn’t afraid to give me this compliment. I didn’t necessarily know how to respond to the compliment, but I think that I gave a reasonable response. The other compliment was more of a realization of where I stand as her friend. It’s a compliment that I think a lot of guys get, but they don’t know nothing about it. Let me tell you all about it.

Last summer, I was hanging out with my friend Rosa at Taco Bell on a Saturday afternoon. It had been a while since I hung out with Rosa, and it was nice to have an opportunity to catch up with her. At Taco Bell, we both got Doritos Locos Tacos and some drinks. We’re sitting down, taking bites of our tacos and we start to realize that there’s something missing in our tacos. We both smiled and realized that we needed some hot sauces on our tacos. So, I got up and went to get a handful of different sauces for our tacos. I brought the sauces back to our table, and we went crazy and drenched our tacos with hot sauces. Then, we started eating our tacos with pure satisfaction.

After we were done eating, we started talking, sharing a few laughs and catching up. I ended up telling her about this girl that I had been on one date with and how there was something strange about her. Rosa was excited and ready for me to spill the tea. So, I explained that on my first date with this girl, she was talking about being exclusive.

Rosa was surprised to hear this and said, “Wait a minute, she asked if you wanted to be exclusive on the first date? That’s interesting, but I know that must’ve freaked you out.”

Rosa knows me and knows that I don’t believe in putting all your eggs in one basket. Meaning, I don’t believe in hopelessly chasing after ONE girl and putting all your time and energy into that ONE girl, even after one date. I think that it takes time and 5-7 dates to determine if you want to be exclusive with that person. Also, I think it’s okay to be talking to other girls, while you’re dating someone because I think it’s important to have options.

Going back to the story, I replied, “Yeah, it kind of caught me off guard. It surprised me. I guess she was really feeling me on that date.”

“Wow, and what was your response?”

“Well, I said alright and told her that I wouldn’t be talking to other girls anymore. It would be just her.”

“Really? Why would you say that? Aren’t you talking to three other girls?”

“I was, but not anymore. I gave my word that I would be exclusive to her, and I’m keeping it. I cut them other girls out, and I’m just talking to her. I mean, I guess I kinda like her and maybe there’s something there.”

Rosa smiled and said, “That’s what’s up. I hope things work out.”

I shook my head and said, “Yeah, I just have bad feeling about just being with her. I don’t know, I feel like I’m gonna be disappointed at the end of it all.”

Rosa groaned and replied, “Isaiah, you are such a pessimist when it comes to girls. I just don’t understand it.”

I explained, “I just don’t trust y’all. It’s just that y’all be playing too many games.”

Rosa responded, “Says the guy that talks to multiple girls and has a really hard time committing to one girl.”

I chuckled and said, “First of all, I don’t have an issue committing to one girl. I believe in pursuing the right girl rather than aimlessly chasing after some girl like a hopeless romantic. By the way, why do girls find hopeless romantics attractive?”

She responded, “Because there’s just something sweet about a guy obsessing over you and thinking about you and only you. He goes out of his way to win your heart and treasures everything about you. It’s so romantic.”

I replied, “But that kind of sounds forced and tiring for the guy though. Plus, that level of consistency is unrealistic, and how do you know it’s authentic? What if a guy’s just being this way to catch you like a fish. He has the right bait by being a hopeless romantic, and he ends up deceiving and catching you and you’re disappointed with the results?”

“Isaiah, you’re reaching, that’s not how it is.

“I’m just saying that it sounds like hopeless romantics force love and try to control it, but that’s not how love works. Love is this beautiful, uncontrollable, natural force. It’s patient and kind, and it’s something that is shared and mutual between two people, and it’s not so one-sided.”

Rosa was impressed with my thoughts on love, but she still pointed out that I was still the guy that talked to multiple girls. I sighed and said, “Oh my goodness, y’all are just as bad if not worse. Y’all be talking to other guys too, y’all are just really slick about it.”

Rosa shook her head and replies, “Maybe before we meet a guy, but once we start dating a guy, we’re invested in him.”

I responded, “I definitely believe that, but y’all still have guys around in case things don’t work out. Y’all just have them disguised as your ‘guy’ friends.”

Rosa rolled her eyes at me because she knew where I was heading. She knew that I was about to bring up an interesting rule that I apply to girls all the time. This rule could also be attributed to guys, but in most cases it’s attributed to girls. It’s called the 20% rule. This rule implies that at least 20% of a girl’s friends that are guys are attracted and interested in being with her. For instance, if a girl has 20 straight guy friends, then at least four or five them are interested in being with her.

Rosa couldn’t necessarily say anything because this rule is accurate with her. In our friend group, it was me, her, Jake, Paul, Stanley and Bryce. Five straight guys total that she was friends with. Three of them (Bryce, Paul and Stanley) were trying to get with her. That’s way above the 20% mark with it being 60% of the guys she’s friends with were trying to get with her. Jake and I knew this, and Rosa eventually and slowly found out about this. She claimed that she was oblivious to this, but I didn’t necessarily believe that. I do think that some girls are oblivious to guys liking them, but for the most part girls know when guys are interested in them. Rosa is a very smart, attractive, flirtatious girl, and she always knows when guys are trying to get with her. Rosa likes receiving attention from guys, so it was hard for me to believe that she was clueless about the whole situation between Bryce, Paul and Stanley, but that’s another story.

Going back to this story, Rosa asked me then if I think it’s wrong for a girl to have “guy” friends. I quickly replied that it’s not wrong at all. I do believe that a guy and a girl can have a genuine friendship with one another as long as boundaries are created and set. At the same time, I do believe that girls keep certain guys around in case things don’t work out with their significant other because you never know. I think girls have backup options because I don’t think girls want to completely start over, and it’s more convenient for them to have backups.

Rosa understood where I was coming from, but then she had another question. She asked, “So, do you think that the girl you’re dating now has backup options?”

I replied, “Yeah, she probably does. I just really don’t care too much about it. I’m aware of it, but I’m not gonna stress about it because it’s not necessary. I’m mostly just thinking about her. I promised to be exclusive to her after one date, and that’s what I’m gonna do. I gonna be as real and as honest as I can be, and we’ll see where it goes.”

Rosa liked my response and assured me that things would definitely work out with us. They did not, but that’s another story. Let’s just say that I will never again put all my eggs in one basket.

Alright, let’s get to the juicy part of this story. I ended up asking Rosa how things were with her boyfriend Dexter. Rosa quickly told me that Dexter wasn’t her boyfriend. I was confused, and Rosa told me that he doesn’t necessarily believe in titles. It sounded like they were in some kind of a situationship. This surprised me because she is the type of girl that wants to claimed, and it just sounded like she was settling for less.

I asked her if she was okay with that. She replied, “Yeah, it’s honestly not a big deal for me. We’re definitely in a good place, and he’s just so romantic and sweet with me. We have amazing conversations and our text messages are funny and ridiculous. He’s just so obsessed over me, and he’s such a hopeless romantic, I love it.”

I responded that’s what’s up. As she was talking about him more in detail, it sounded like they were “single but together.” I asked Rosa how long have they been together, and she told me eight months. I was shocked. Then, I said, “Oh that’s what’s up! Look at y’all going all strong and everything, that’s awesome! Being all in love and everything and—

Rosa interrupted, “Oh, we’re not in love. We’ve never said ‘I love you’ to each other.”

This was quite strange to me because Dexter and Rosa had been together for eight months, and they never said “I love you” to each other. I asked Rosa how come they haven’t, and she just told me that it’s not a big deal to them. They just haven’t felt it for each other.

Rosa and I kept going back and forth about them not saying “I love you” to each other because it’s just super weird and confusing to me. How could you not love someone after being with them for eight months?

I started joking and saying that they’re in “luh” rather than in love. I explained that it’s a term that my best friend Obi created. It means that you have a little bit of love for a person, but you’re afraid to be fully in love with a person. You’re simply in “luh.”

Then, I said, “You and ole boy are in luh. You can’t deny the luh that you two have for each other. Your luh is real.”

She laughed and told me to shut up. I chuckled and continued, “Dexter has so much luh for you, and you’re playing games. You luh that boy, and he luh you. It’s that simple when it comes to luh.”

We both started laughing, and she said, “Oh my goodness, I can’t with you. You sound so ridiculous. But nah, I’ll say it when I mean it. I don’t want to say it if I don’t mean it, you know? Plus, I don’t want to look like a fool. When I say it, I mean it, especially with a guy.”

I nodded my head in agreement and said, “Yeah, I agree and understand. You should definitely say it when you mean it. At the same time, you shouldn’t be afraid to love somebody.”

Then, Rosa looked at me in my eyes and whispered, “I mean…I love you.”

Honestly, I wasn’t expecting that strange compliment from Rosa. It took me by surprise because it came from a place of vulnerability, and it meant something more than just a friend. For a second, I didn’t know what to say, but I knew I had to say something fast. So, I smiled and responded, “Aww thank you.”

After I said this, I could tell that my response kind of upset her a little. So, I added, “I’m just kidding, I luh you too, girl.”

My comment put a smile on Rosa’s face, and she just responded, “Isaiah, you’re something else, you’re so weird and extra.”

We both laughed, and I said, “Yeah, I am a little crazy and weird every now and then. And I most definitely extra, I can’t even front. Also, I’m not ashamed of it thank you very much.”

We continued talking some more, and we eventually ended up leaving Taco Bell. I drove her home, and we said our goodbyes. As I was driving home, I couldn’t stop thinking about how Rosa told me that she loves me. What does that even mean? Then, I slowly realized that she does in a sense see me as a backup option for her. I didn’t know how to feel about being Rosa’s backup option, when I just saw her as a friend and nothing more. It’s honestly a strange, weird compliment to be someone’s backup.

It’s kind of nice to be someone’s backup, but I wonder if Rosa and I could still be friends. Can I really be friends with someone that has strong feelings for me? I have an answer to this question, but that’s another story. I just can’t believe the two strange compliments that I received from my friend Rosa

This is the end of “The Strangest Compliment: Episode Two.”

Based on this story, I have some interesting questions that I would love to be answered. These questions will help me prove something to a friend, so if y’all could answer one or more these questions whether you read the story or not, I would really appreciate it. You can comment a simple “yes” or “no” for all these questions or go more in depth. Here are the questions:

  1. Are hopeless romantics authentic?
  2. Should you be exclusive to one person after one date?
  3. Is it okay for a guy to talk to multiple girls while dating someone?
  4. Is it okay for a girl to have multiple guy friends?
  5. Is 6-10 months too long for you to say “I love you” to someone that you’ve been in a relationship with?
  6. Can a man and a woman have a genuine, close friendship without it leading into something more?

Here are my answers:

  1. No
  2. No
  3. Yes because you never know, and you have to keep your options open. Also, it’s okay for a girl to do this as well. I think it takes 5-7 dates to determine exclusivity with a person because I believe in “growing in love” with a person rather than “falling in love” with a person. Growing in love with a person to me is about using your mind, heart and soul. Falling in love is only about using your heart. Love is patient and kind, and to me falling in love is the opposite of that. It’s abrupt, sudden and emotional. There’s nothing stable about it, and it’s not a good foundation to build love with somebody. Again, this is my opinion. In addition, it’s important to be mindful because you don’t know a person, and it’s okay to keep your options opened for someone that is better fit for you to grow in love with. If you meet the 5-7 date requirements with someone, then I think that’s when you should stop talking to multiple people and start building and being exclusive to that person.
  4. Yes, but I think it’s important to be aware of girl’s friends. Same way with a guy’s “girl” friends as well.
  5. Yes
  6. No

Again, if you all can answer one or more of these questions with a simple “yes” or “no” and/or go more in depth with your questions, I would really appreciate it. Also, if y’all want to dispute/argue with any of my answers, I will welcome it. I love arguing.

 

 

The Strangest Compliment: Episode One

In this episode, I witnessed an old man give one of the strangest compliments I ever heard to a female coworker of mine. It was compliment that had me dying of laughter, and it really made my day. I remember the old man trying to explain his rationale to me, but the damage had been done. The compliment he gave was weird, off the wall and a little creepy. It’s a compliment that one should never use on a woman, especially a young woman. It’s a compliment that all men should stay away from. Let me tell you all about it.

Back when I was working at Sheetz, I remember that I was coming in for my usual 6am-2pm shift. It was a Friday, and I was somewhat in the mood to work with only four hours of sleep. I came in at 5:59, and I saw this new female coworker of mine behind the counter. Her name was Fate, and it was her third day on the job. She was a gorgeous, attractive, young woman, and she was a very optimistic and happy person at Sheetz. I enjoyed working with her all of the time. It was always fun and cool working with her. She would always make me laugh, and I would always make her laugh too, and we just had a really good vibe. It also helped that she was black too. It was nice that another person of color was working at Sheetz, and I didn’t feel so alone.

I walk inside, see Fate behind the counter and say hi to her. She gives me a big smile and says hi back to me. One of my other coworkers, Sara, noticed my interaction with Fate. I put my head back and sighed because I knew what was coming. I went to the backroom, clocked in and saw Sara. I said hi to her, and she gave me a big smile. I chuckled and said, “What is it, Sara?”

“The new girl is kinda cute, huh,” Sara said.

I laughed and replied, “Yeah, she’s cute, I can’t deny it.”

“So, when’s the biggest flirt in the store gonna get her number?”

I laughed and said, “Sara, I’m not a flirt. I’m just friendly, that’s all. I am not flirtatious in any way.”

“Whatever makes you sleep at night, flirt, just go out there and work your magic,” Sara replied.

I just laughed and shook my head. Before I could say anything, Sara left and went to the kitchen. I grabbed my headset and went to the front where Fate was stationed. There was a little line formed to the register, so I wasn’t too concerned with taking care of it by myself. I went to an open register and started ringing customers’ items. I saw that Fate was almost finished with a customer, so I said, “Hey Fate, after that customer, you’re good to go, I can take care of this line myself.”

“Wow, you’re so eager to push me away, I thought we had something special,” Fate joked.

I laughed and replied, “Nah, we don’t, it’s about time for you to go and get the steppin.”

We both laughed, and she said, “You’re so silly, but I have to help you with this line.”

I didn’t object because if she wanted to stay, then that was her prerogative. If the situations were reversed, I would’ve been gone already. Her shift was over, and there was no reason for her to stay and help me out. At the same time, it was sweet of her to stay with me and bring down the line.

Anyways, I was ringing up a customer when this old, black man was at Fate’s register. He was in his late 40s, early 50s. He was a regular customer that would come in Monday-Friday in the morning before he had to go to work. However, he was at Sheetz earlier than usual. I wondered why he was at Sheetz, but then it was revealed. He looked at her and said, “My oh my, I heard about you but you looking even better in person. How you doing?”

Of course, he came for Fate. I was nervous because I didn’t what this old man was about to say to Fate, but I knew that it was going to be something crazy and off the wall. I just had a feeling.

Fate gave a nervous chuckle and said, “Oh wow, I’m doing good, I’m just about to be—

I interrupted, “Fate, hurry up, we got a line forming, you gotta talk and work.”

I interrupted because I knew that Fate was about to tell him that she was about to be done with work. There was no reason for him to know that, especially with the fact that he came for her. The old man laughed and said, “Isaiah, she’s doing a fine, great job with me, you don’t have to worry about her.”

I chuckled and said alright. Then, he continued, ” By the way, you’re such a pretty, little thing. Isn’t she pretty, Isaiah?”

I nodded in agreeance and Fate thanked him for the compliment. Now, I thought that he was done after he said that. That would’ve been a good stopping point for him, but there was more. Yes, what he said next was a truly strange compliment. He said, “Now, are you sure that you’re old enough to work here at Sheetz? You don’t really look that old, but you’re looking  just as cute and pretty as a 12-year-old girl.”

My mouth was wide open when he said that. I was so confused and perplexed that I didn’t know what to do. I looked at Fate, and she had this horrified look on her face. I’ll admit that Fate did look young for her age but to call her a 12-year-old girl was kind of pushing it and a little bit more of an insult than a compliment. How was she going to respond? I wondered. She looked at him, gave a nervous smile and chuckled and asked him what did he mean by that. He explained, “Nah, I meant that you have this youthful look about you. You know what I mean? It’s like this, you look like you’re 16 years old. It’s a compliment to your youthful look, baby girl.”

I was trying so hard to keep my laughter, but it was so hard. I was in tears and just trying to keep it together. Then, Fate laughed and said, “I’m older than 16 years old, though. That’s kind of messed up that you think that I’m a child.”

“No, it ain’t even like that,” he said. The old man tried to plead his case, but he was failing miserably. He wanted me to help him out, but I couldn’t. I was trying to keep my composure because I had just heard the weirdest compliment I ever heard. Eventually, he ended up looking at his watch and realizing that he needed to go. He grabbed his things, looked at Fate and said, “I’ll see you around, baby girl. You doing an amazing job, don’t let Isaiah tell you otherwise.”

Once he left the building, I ended up just laughing like crazy. I was rolling. Fate smiled at my laughter and asked me what just happened. I ceased laughter, wiped the tears out of my eyes and said, “Clearly, he likes them young, my bad, real young with his old, pedophilic self. I can’t believe he compared you to a 12-year-old girl.”

We both ended up laughing, and she just couldn’t believe it herself. She said, “Yeah, it was so weird and creepy, I hope I don’t see him again.”

“Oh, you will. He likes you, and he’s trying to get to know you. These old men that come in here, are trying to get young, pretty girls that are employees here like you in any way they can. They think they can say or do whatever they want to you because you can’t run away from them. Ironically, they think you’re product in the store that they can own. It’s sad and pathetic, which is why you gotta be careful here, especially with the male customers. This place is toxic towards the women that work here, remember that.” I stated.

She understood, but she wondered what she was going to do about the old man. I replied, “Oh, that’s easy, all you gotta do is just tell him that you gotta boyfriend,” I responded.

Fate laughed and responded, “But that’s lying, Isaiah. Plus, maybe I won’t see him again.”

It’s true, she wouldn’t see him again. In fact, he would come in the very next day trying to find her. She wouldn’t be there, but I would be there. However, that’s another story. I just really wasn’t expecting such a strange compliment at Sheetz.

This is the end of “The Strangest Compliment: Episode One.”

Be sure to like, comment and share your thoughts on this short story. There are more episodes to come in this short story series “The Strangest Compliment.”

 

 

The Death of You

It’s frightening that I have murder on my mind.

I have to remind myself that I’m justified in killing you.

Please understand that I don’t want to do this.

Killing you is my worst nightmare.

I’ve always loved you and everything you’ve done for me.

You’re the reason for my Shawshank Redemption.

You’re the reason for my motivation to fight.

You’re the reason for my dedication to life.

Nevertheless, I have to end you.

 

I rely on you way too much.

You have failed me countless times.

You’re an ally that I can no longer afford to have by my side.

We’ve lost too many battles together in this great war called life.

The enemy is destroying us at will from all angles, yet you tell me to be patient.

You tell me to stay optimistic for help will be on the way.

You tell me to trust in you, and I trust in you.

 

Years later, we’re still losing the battles that you said we could win.

And you’re still telling me the same things.

How long can I continue this never ending cycle of losing?

How long must I show goodness and mercy to all of my enemies?

How long can I tolerate you?

 

I’m sorry that it had to come to this.

I never expected this day to come.

I thought that we would always be together.

I thought that you would always be my strength.

I thought that you would always be the one to comfort me.

I thought, and I was wrong.

 

The thought of killing you is madness.

I don’t want to lose you.

I didn’t think I could ever lose you.

Like dreams, nightmares do come true, too.

At the same time, circumstances have changed.

Killing you is a necessary evil.

 

I’m sorry that I have to do this.

I’m sorry that I have to betray you.

I’m sorry that I have to abandon you.

I’m sorry that I have to crucify you.

I’m sorry that I have to murder you.

Please, forgive me.

Please forgive me for the death of you.