Thursday, July 21, 2005

Man in Black

I went to the bike store today to look at that black bike I've been eyeing.

The guy in the shop asked me, "Do you like always wear black?'

I told him I had been wearing black pretty much ever since 9/12.

Now, for the sake of accuracy, sometimes I wear blue, and sometimes

I wear a red T Shirt underneath my black button shirt.

But these days, I'm hard pressed not to want to wear black.

I saw a shirt in the book store that pretty much said it for me.

I'm wearing black until they come out with a darker color.

I couldn't buy it though, because there weren't any large or mediums.

I guess you can't put that kind of thing on a child.

At work, I make jokes that if I'm ever made manager,

everyone will have to wear black.

We'll look like an army of waiters at a fufu sushi shop.

That pretty much keeps me in the mezosphere of the org chart.

Lots of people wear black these days.

The art crowd always has.

It's always been good in New York.

Steve Jobs wears black a lot, but he doesn't make everyone else wear it,

and his products are white and platinum.

And the i pod is making a serious good difference to the Apple bottom line.

So, I was talking to this bike mechanic and I could see he wanted more.

So I gave it to him.

"You want to know why I really wear black?"

"Sure"

"Because we (humankind) are headed for a no shit, annie get my gun,

remember when things were normal, kick you in your groin, horrible war.

And it won't be one of those shock and awe video wars

Where you sit and watch it as if its just another Fourth of July show

on Fox and CNN . "

He just looked at me with that look people give you when they realize

that they wish you had never walked into their formerly happy life.

I tried to make him feel better by saying

that we could avoid this conflict if millions of us got it together

and really raised a huge ruckus about it.

I could see he thought that was a remote possibility at best.

No doubt, he knows his generation better than I do.

I walked out thinking,

Now that wasn't necessary.

You just scared the alignment out of this nice college kid,

who is probably going to go get really loose tonight,

bend a fender, and fight with his girl friend over pizza topping.

Then I thought, well at least I didn't go into overdrive and say

There will be dead people, and sick people,

and rationing, and it's going to look a lot like those fascist war movies,

Except the American Hummer will star as the new German staff car.

And, unfortunately, with those "you know what" helmets,

our guys will look like the old bad guys,

Except for those night scope gizmos perched on their noggins.


If humankind continues down this path of burning carbon fuels,

People that we know and love are going to suffer.

If you don't know by now,

I believe our only chance to avoid this conflict is to move

at light speed,

to the light.

I mean this spiritually, mentally, technologically, and culturally.

Well, you wonder why I always dress in black,
Why you never see bright colors on my back,
And why does my appearance seem to have a somber tone.
Well, there's a reason for the things that I have on.

I wear the black for the poor and the beaten down,
Livin' in the hopeless, hungry side of town,
I wear it for the prisoner who has long paid for his crime,
But is there because he's a victim of the times.

I wear the black for those who never read,
Or listened to the words that Jesus said,
About the road to happiness through love and charity,
Why, you'd think He's talking straight to you and me.

Well, we're doin' mighty fine, I do suppose,
In our streak of lightnin' cars and fancy clothes,
But just so we're reminded of the ones who are held back,
Up front there ought 'a be a Man In Black.

I wear it for the sick and lonely old,
For the reckless ones whose bad trip left them cold,
I wear the black in mournin' for the lives that could have been,
Each week we lose a hundred fine young men.

And, I wear it for the thousands who have died,
Believen' that the Lord was on their side,
I wear it for another hundred thousand who have died,
Believen' that we all were on their side.

Well, there's things that never will be right I know,
And things need changin' everywhere you go,
But 'til we start to make a move to make a few things right,
You'll never see me wear a suit of white.

Ah, I'd love to wear a rainbow every day,
And tell the world that everything's OK,
But I'll try to carry off a little darkness on my back, '
Till things are brighter, I'm the Man In Black.

Johnny Cash passed on September 12th.

I wonder if he's wearing a rainbow suit now?

My bet is on black.



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7 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is such a sad time for our country and we all move blithely along as though it is just another summer day.

Each moment is one less that we have to change the course.

I have found myself weeping lately. Weeping for the right reasons and for the wrong. Weeping for my own particular human condition. Weeping because my Children won't enjoy the possibilities that we did - already so much is lost. I weep because we have become the bad guys in the world. I weep because we don't take of our old and I am becoming one of them. I weep because my employee of 18 years is in the hospital and her retirement will go to paying her inflated bill.

I weep because we use so much of the earth's resources and we turn a blind eye to the suffering of others.

I weep because we see the dark skinned and the Muslim as the other. I weep because we do unimaginable things in the name of God and then feel righteous about it.

I weep for myself and my own lack of oneness and understanding.

I weep because you have brought the whole damn ugliness of humanity before me this morning on the dreariest of days and the little that I do doesn't even make a ripple.

This post is powerful and elegant, as usual.

Black indeed.

6:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

dreary and scary. try some new colors out.

7:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For one of the few times in my life, I am going to take an optimistic view. Yesterday’s earthfamilyalpha’s message pointed out benefits of moving toward extracting all the energy we need from the sun. I continue to believe that this “moving to the light” has the potential to solve many of our civilization’s most difficult problems. Earthfamilyalpha and all of its members just need to work hard to accelerate “moving to the light”. CHF

7:32 AM  
Blogger OZ said...

that's the spirit. I'm going to the mountains.

7:49 AM  
Blogger austinmuse said...

Deep, sensitive posts from the night's full moon in dark Capricorn.

I've struggled life-long with the question "What is art?"...is it the expression of what is [in the eye of the beholder] or of what can be? Mystics, and now scientists, tell us that focused attention creates the world, so....

My vote goes to dealing practically with what is while repairing frequently to gaze upon the desirable...and wearing brights with my black.

7:50 AM  
Anonymous tomorrow said...

no black...no white...
maybe nothing is right
outside in the colorfield
lucky days cannot be stolen

9:11 AM  
Anonymous Alan Oldfield said...

Something is approaching
lower than my eyes
and for just a moment
my memories die

Scorced land and scattered sky
and nothing in my hands
moon fast descends
and leaves alone
this one who stares and bends

I see something moving
right below my eyes
the undone deeds are coming
they strangle and then die

Great grey wings fly over land
I've come my only way
and looking back I know for sure
that it's not where I stay.

12:42 PM  

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