The Daily Grind Video

Earlier this week I got an email from Sarah, a publicist colleague that swore I would love this play titled The Word Begins at the Shiva/Public Theater in New York City. I quickly accepted, even though I was on my train back to my home in Queens. It would be a tough task to make it from Queens to lower Manhattan in under an hour once I arrived home, but I was determined to go since another friend hit me saying she turned the tixs down and offered my name in the mix cause, ‘it would be your type of thing.’ With the brief heads up about the play being critically acclaimed and up for various awards, I barely even caught the name of it. Just wanted to go. But when I got home, my oldest daughter was struggling with her homework, which was to write a play! Once I saw her frustration I couldn’t just run out on her. So I respectfully called Sarah and told her the irony of turning down a play to help write one. She understood and set me up with a viewing for a few days later.

The whole day of the play I was having it rough. Still reeling from staying up late watching the heart wrenching scenes of the horrible aftermath of Haiti’s earthquake. Dealing with the questions that swirl on an everyday basis, ‘Am I doing enough? How can this work better? Why am I holding back?’ And those questions were more in parallel to Haiti’s action and my own personal issues. It’s wild how people can try to asses what your problem is from the outside when you deal with it from within. This thinking led me to believe we are all individually Haiti in our hearts and minds. Incredibly proud people. Self liberators, with the history to back it up. But as time shows neglect for self healing when problems are compounded by the seven deadly sins, we crumble, externally and internally. When the spirits of a people aren’t fed in a nurturing environment we see what happens. Haiti’s hurt is all of our faults. Help is finally coming to a country that was knowingly desperate in the first place. Similar to the way we only deal with the hospital when things are beyond early detection physically. All avoidable situations. Natural disaster you say? Yes, the earth yawned, stretched out and crushed humans in the process. When the people cried out and screamed for help, we ignored them. So a higher power snatched our spirits, eyes, minds, souls and whatever else you feel with to help these people.

True change comes with lives as the currency when things aren’t worked out in a civil process. The civil rights movement…lives. Fighting sexual and violent predators…lives. Corporate corruption…lives. Medical bills…lives. Political placement…lives. The list goes on, and so do we when we realize we can squeak by without being hit with each bullet directly. Getting grazed doesn’t stop your movement, just wisens you up to do it differently next time. But what if next time is the final time? Haiti’s hurt is final in some ways. Lives gone from people that could’ve been saved if the proper aid was already there, if the country was a functional union. But I think its position as the poorest in the Western Hemisphere is looked at as some sick badge of “yeah, that’s the unfortunate child of the world.” Why would we allow them or any nation for that matter to wear that crown of thorns?

I think the idea that Quincy Jones took to creating one of the greatest albums of all time should be how we work on various lands of despair. He mentioned that he and the production team for Michael Jackson’s Thriller album worked and tweaked the worst track in the bunch until it was the best of the bunch, then went to the next track that was now the worst until it was the best and so on. That approach made for the formation of a classic project that influences people decades later. I’m a music head so that example is natural for me, but it would work for the countries that need help.

Global Grind

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