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Archive for KARATE

FOND MEMORIES OF MY FATHER DURING THE HOLIDAYS AND BEYOND!

LIFE STARTS HERE.jpgToo often it has been stated that black men are not there for their children,  or men in general are slacking off from their responsibilities.  I have a different perspective.

 My father was a WWII African American Veteran.  He was on the front lines of  that war,  from the way he described it to me when I was a kid. 

I used to love to listen to  him tell stories about work,  or some about the Army Reserve. 

My father had been given a waiver and also given a license to practice as a Practical Nurse when he came out of the service of the United States Army.

  He  became an Army Reservist.  He was a Sgt.  in the Army Reserve. When I was a child he would take me to the Army off of Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn, NY.  I used to love it there during the Christmas  Holiday!  That place was so gigantic to a small child. 

I would run and play amongst the army tanks, and jeeps!  I loved the smell of the gasoline, and heavy metal vehicals.  That was my second home when my father would take me there for parties, to get my gift from “Santa.”!  

  Upstairs in the rooms where the party with Santa was held, there were so many rooms.  The other children and I would sneak from “secret room to secret room” until our parents would call us to come sit on Santa’s lap!  My father would always know everybody there. 

 When I think back,  I did not know what “racism” was until I got into my teens.  My father was friendly with every army reservist there!  There was laughter, and jokes and smiles,  pats on the back and introductions to the other families and their children! 

 I recently found a letter from him to my mother when he was on Army Reserve upstate at Camp Drum.  This letter had been written in 1960’s.  He was telling my mother to pick up his check from the hospital where he worked. 

 He also said that he missed her at the end of his letter.  That was touching to me because it seem that when became severely overcome by diabetes his attittude had changed toward my mother. 

 He eventually passed  when I was 21 years old, from an enlarged heart, and kidney failure.  He suffered trememdously  from  diabetes! 

 I remember watching my father give himself a needle in the stomach.  He had been put in the hospital a couple of times. 

But one thing I noticed about my father, was that he refused to stay home from work.  He went to work everyday. 

He had two jobs.  He worked in what was then called Brooklyn Jewish Hospital,  and Creedmoor Children’s Hospital.

  He would leave for work at 10:00 p.m. and not return home until the next day at 5:00p.m.  My mother would have dinner prepared,  he would take his shower and go straight to bed. 

 He never got many hours of sleep at home. He worked in the Emergency Room at Brooklyn Jewish Hospital at night.  He worked at Creedmoor Children’s Hospital during the day. 

He provided a large bungalo house with a big yard for his family.  My mother called him a WORKAHOLIC!!

His major concern was  that my mother provide him with clean clothes, and dinner.  He could handle the rest. 

On the weekend my father would take me to the park after he had had some sleep. 

He would make sure I had done my chores and then the rest of the afternoon was my time with him!  He loved to play handball with people he had met in the park while I ran around with my friends at the  playground. 

 I never had a bad experience at that park in Cambria Heights Queens NewYork!  As I got older the movies with Bruce Lee came out and my father and I truly enjoyed everyone of those on Saturdays.  

 I remember seeing “Enter the Dragon and a whole host of other movies!”  I became so involved that I started buying Karate Magazine and my father  enrolled me in the Jerome Mackey Karate School. 

 I took up judo!  The Karate Teacher looked very mean and he yelled alot.  So I took judo instead.  I loved being tossed about. 

Except for one time that my judo partener  did a move I did not expect and tossed me so hard that my bottom lip slid across the canvas mat. 

 My feelings were hurt and I never returned to that judo class again. 

 You see,  I loved the sport….but I was a bit shy,  and did not really like the violent part. 

 But  looking back now I realize how I must have had a deep crush on Bruce Lee,  because when he died I was heart broken—for a long while. 

 I read the book on his life and death.  I met my husband when I was 28 and don’t you know it —my husband had two black belts?

  I was shocked.  He had a black belt in IKEJUJITSU  and Korean Karate—oh,  and he also had a black belt in sword, and weapons fighting too

  I was floored,  and excited that I was marrying someone who had such skill.

—-Getting back to my father,  he purchased an above ground five foot 20 or more round swimming pool which he very rarely used himself.

  It was for the family –and he worked so he was more interested in sleeping!  My father allowed my mother to express herself in decorating.

  He even assisted her in opening up an antique shop on Jamacia Avenue in 1965! 

  He was a special man and He was a SPECIAL BLACK AFRICAN AMERICAN MAN!!!!   

  In closing I would like to state that we must remember the good in aALL MEN!!

  No one is perfect.  But try to remember the best in the people you have met.  There are always opportunities to build up your husbands and fathers. 

 Let’s try to decrease some of the negative press against the Black/African American Men,  and Men of ALL RACES for that matter. 

Show a man in your life that you care, and that you appreciate the kind and good things that they do for you.

    It is always easy to find the weaknesses and the errors—But for the sake of your children build up their selfesteem by being role models that they will remember up until they are middle age 47 year old  woman like myself.

  What you do today will defintely last a life time, and will go to the next generation after you are gone! 

 Enjoy the Holidays, and keep safe!