A Brief Introduction

Endeavoring to define myself outside of a "job title." I'm a nomad of sorts who fell in love with technology, activism, and helping others. I run a web & media consulting firm, have a blog specifically for activists & non-profits, and travel often. I love talking about theology, politics, and social change. I love doing something about it even more. I also like to be a well-rounded and fully present person. That's why I write here. Connect with me on twitter

Monday, August 20, 2007

New York City

Even though qubo was gracious enough to give me five-weeks off after stopping work in LA and resuming work in New York City, I managed to consume all but a few days of that with the Right to Marry Campaign, my Epic Journey Into Adulthood across the country with Meilee, my cousin's wedding, and of course catching up with all of the Potomac crew.

I was able to get a studio in a beautiful building in Long Island City, but unfortunately the lease doesn't begin in until September 7. An old friend from USC has an extra room in her apartment in Brooklyn which I was planning on moving into for interim until some friends in the new building found out last minute they'd be able to let me crash there.

As I went back to the Brooklyn apartment near Prospect Park, some 45 minutes from my Manhattan, to fetch my belongings I couldn't help but feel a sense of privilege. I was lucky enough to have friends in nice neighborhoods where I could stay. I didn't have to shop in stores where the cashiers are in the back to help prevent robbery. I didn't have to live where cabs won't drive. I'm sure a lot of people in this neighborhood are there because they want to be there. It's a heavily Jamican area and I felt a strong sense of community. In fact, I got more "hello"s and "how are you doing"s from strangers in the short times I was there than the rest of my time in Manhattan. Still, graffiti and stalled cars line the alley while buildings sit in disarray. It's not the way I would want to live ... and I got out. It seemed like I was running away.

As I travel about the city via subway, I'm reminded of what Amy B-M once said. That to truly experience a city you can't just drive around in it, you have to walk, take buses, and ride the subway. This is the first time I've lived in a place where I have been able to do that. I already understand what she means. I wonder what I would've learned if I stayed in Brookyln for those three weeks. But at the same time, would I just be paying understanding lip-service? With a degree from USC under my belt, a home in Potomac only a few hour away, and friends with posh apartments who could come fetch me, would I ever really understand?

I don't know, but I'd like to find out. I'd like to do understand not so I can pat myself on the back for a job well done or so I'll have a good story to tell around the dining room table. But so I can learn something I didn't know before. I've already learned that it's not that hard to ask a stranger how they are and really mean it, I wonder what else is waiting for me to learn out there.

More on qubo, the apartment, adventures with new friends, and of course the Epic Journey later. For now, I'm going to fall asleep listening to Rufus Wainwright, looking at the Manhattan skyline from across the river, and digesting my tofu stir fry. It was a good day.

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