Absurd Conversations #2,740 and #2,741

June 29, 2008 at 3:53 pm | Posted in The Bucket, Working | 1 Comment

Michael showed up at work to tell me that he hadn’t registered for summer school because he was afraid to get in trouble with his parents.  The registration period was about to be over in an hour and if he didn’t register that day then he’d probably have to stay back a year.  Only problem was that he hadn’t asked his parents for the money to pay for it and I was doubtful that they’d let him register without paying.

We jumped into my car to go down to the school department office where we planned to convince them to let him register without paying. 

While in the car:

Michael: Just tell them that you’re my mom.

Gabacha: Um, Michael…you’re black.

Michael: Well, say I’m adopted.  Or I play out in the sun a lot.

Gabacha: I don’t think so.

He was able to register with no problem (shocking to me, considering the fact that the Pawtucket School Department seems to find joy in setting up roadblocks), but not before we managed to make everyone in line snicker…

Michael: So you’re gonna say you’re my mom, right?

Gabacha: Didn’t we already have this conversation? Nobody will believe you.

Michael: I’m your adopted black kid, remember?


The next day, Jeff is in the kitchen finishing off some ice cream and lamenting the fact that he had no milk to drink with it.

This is the conversation we had:

Gabacha: I’ve got some soy milk you can have.  It’s vanilla flavored.

Jeff: Are you racist?

Gabacha: Um, what?

Jeff: You must be racist.  Everyone knows black people don’t drink soy milk.

Gabacha: What’s wrong with soy milk?

Jeff: Nothing’s wrong with it.  It’s just a white person’s drink.

Gabacha: No shit.  I had no idea.

Jeff: Well, now you know. 

Coworker: Well, I don’t think it’s a white person thing, it’s more of a privilege thing.


Man, fifteen year olds are fun.


The Name’s Dalton

June 9, 2008 at 5:38 pm | Posted in Life in the US, Weirdness | 1 Comment

Patrick Swayze is a frickin’ wizard in Road House. 

Who knew that someone with feathered hair could be at once so dangerous and yet so wise?

I wish I had more to say about my experience watching this movie on VH1 last night, but my absolute awe has silenced me.

Not Gonna Be the Summer of Love

June 3, 2008 at 11:37 am | Posted in The Bucket, Working | 8 Comments

Yet another dreaded text message arrived last night.  There was a drive-by just outside of work at 8:30 pm and a kid was shot in the back while running away. 

They hadn’t released the name of the youth, but Channel 12 came over to the center to talk to us.  Of course, I booked it, but not before getting the name of the youth.  It was Silent Bob.  He’s been coming here a couple of times a week with a dance group for over a year.  He was practically mute for months and months but just recently had been warming up to us.  I’d start getting little smiles from under his black hood and we’d progressed to actual greetings.

Apparently he’s in stable critical condition at the hospital. 

Despite the fact that this happened directly outside of work and that this kid and all his boys were frequent visitors and clients, I don’t particularly fear for my safety.  The only thing that concerns me is that the people with guns who want to use them on the boys of Woodlawn aren’t exactly sharpshooters.  While they might have a specific target in mind, it’s doubtful that they have the expertise with firearms to actually hit the target. 

I fear that this is only the beginning. 

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