Two months (maybe 3) is about how long it takes before you start to feel the eery sensation that you’ve met all the black people in San Francisco… ok, maybe 4 but that’s generous. Whether you saw her, frustrated like you, in the Walgreens Ethnic Hair Aisle, him cruising down Fisherman’s Wharf or that group at Ritch’s 90s party… there’s an undeniable bond that you share with any black person that you see in SF. A feeling of mutual survival… that you’re still here, that you’re understood.

Coming from the perspective of someone that has never quite felt understood… too nerdy in High School… too poor at the Ivy, this is not a new phenomenon to me. It’s been 5 years since I moved from the south side of Chicago and to be honest, I’ve gotten over the notion that I will ever find a place that will make me feel completely at home. If I’m blessed, I’ll find a comfy place to lay my head or a few good friends who will inspire me to do more with my life as I move from city to city. As my comfort zone has narrowed, my mind has matured and I find myself, looking for friends who vibe first, with my character and second, with a free but driven spirit.

I’ve found myself looking for love. Not a romantic love but a life love. To be surrounded by people that love the air that they breathe. A love for dancing, no matter what song is playing. A love for the misunderstood. A love for an existence that’s bigger than ourselves. An openness to learning. And a zero tolerance for mediocrity. A hype spirit that can crunk it out to “Don’t Stop Believing” and chill to Lauren’s “Everything is Everything“. An understanding that race and gender means something but it doesn’t have to mean everything. A commonality in spirit, in struggle, in destiny. And if you know not to touch my hair, well that’s bonus points. I, like others, yearn for the day that SF becomes as diverse as we all want it to be but until that day… you can find me at Manor West, a coffee shop on Hyde Street or Golden Gate Bridge….rocking out to this song with a camera around my neck. Join me?

xoxo,

jvr

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