Sunday, February 26, 2012

Book Reading Pics and Thank You's

Respect to Sister's Bookstore and Cafe for the opp to have an African-centered discussion on our sons and more effective ways to reach them. It wasn't easy for some parents to have to be called out on their bad choices and counter-productive language. But once they saw the connection between an unruly young man and parent formalities, they understood that accountability goes both ways.

Like all book readings and workshops, you want to allow all opinions yet at the same time make sure the very purpose of the convo isn't derailed. And that's the delicate job of an author pushing his latest book. For example, we could've taken more time on how hyper-masculinity is a positive, but my intention was to focus on the pressure to fit in and the boys and men who hide their vulnerabilties behind it. We could've spent more time on what The White man did and didn't do, but I came to talk about personhood, accountablity, healing. Not blame. Still, I thank each and all for attending. I thank the young men, especially, who read with me and to you, and the mothers who reminded us that deadbeat dad is not a word to use loosely.

I thank also my former colleague from Rikers who stepped in looking like pamfoxxybrowngrier, and a newfoundsistafriend who travelled all the way from Charlotte, North Carolina just to be part of the discussion!

Special thanks again to Leo Defoe for being the face of my cover and Ocean Morisset for a great book design. And of course, much love right back to the buyers for making me head back home with an empty bag!

ps-- Part of tradition at Sister's is to close either with a prayer or a poem or song from someone in the audience. Gina Coates blessed us with The greatest Love of All. Thank you, Gina. Much appreciated!

My next project is a support guide for young males who have sex with other males but don't relate to gay culture, and the parents who love them. Stay tuned. Stay interested.

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