Leslie Cook

My Quarterly Black Infusion

In Black America, Movie Review, Random Thoughts on October 9, 2009 at 2:26 am

Today, I experienced my quarterly infusion of Black movies. You might be familiar with them. These days, the majority of them are created, directed, and produced by Tyler Perry. Honestly, I enjoy most of his movies, even though they tend to be peopled by actors that are not quite as skilled at acting as I would like. This quarterly dose of culture is provided to me by mom. I’m sure she’s not consciously aware of it, but subconsciously, I suspect that she thinks that I’m not as fully immersed in the culture of my people as I should be. This is her way of reminding me of who I am and where I came from. For this, I thank her.

In my early life, I grew up in what most people would call “the hood.” When I was about 3, my family moved from Columbus, Ohio to Los Angeles. We lived mostly in South Central Los Angeles, and, for a year in Watts. Wouldn’t you know that the year my parents close to live in the general Watts area, the neighborhood decided to riot. That was August 1965. Growing up, I took in the culture of the time. As kids, we listened to the stories everyone had to tell about police brutality, segregation, and blatant discrimination. We saw how the community would come together for anyone that needed help. I guess we had to. As time moved on, I went to college, got work and began to live my life. As I moved into a more integrated world, I moved away from the community. And, over the years, the community became more fractured, not as close knit. Gangs moved into the old neighborhoods, the neighborhood compositions changed, and all of us kids moved away. Most of my friends moved up and started living a more “middle-classed” existence in better, more integrated neighborhoods. But we all still remember the Sunday afternoon barbeques where our dads would hang out in a backyard with a beer in one hand, laughing with their friends, while Motown tunes acted as a soundtrack. And every quarter, my mom reminds me of where I came from. Next quarter, I think we’re going to see Good Hair, a Chris Rock movie. God bless Black America!

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  1. interesting

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