Voting is like Grandaddy and Ice Cream

10000227-00-00-00-00_lgWhy don’t people think it’s worth it to vote? They say all of the candidates are terrible, it’s just choosing the lesser of evils. How can things change with this mentality? How can we shift power without showing up? It costs to run for any office. Why would anyone worthy run, without seeing that the people they need will be behind them in support? Many of the worthy are the struggling 99%. We must unify and show ourselves in order for changes to occur. Be the change we want to see; speak it, show it, VOTE IT.

If you don’t communicate your wants and needs how do you expect them to be fulfilled?

My grandfather (Rest In Heaven) had the best ice cream. He owned a deep freezer in the basement and its sole purpose was to hold tubs of ice cream and his hunting victories. My grandfather was a hunter. He was handsome, strong and stern with a powerful voice and deliberate eyes.

He loved ice cream. He would lay on his bed in a diagonal, his face at the foot of the bed,  strong leathering arms resting on the corner and his large hands clasping a bowl of vanilla or neapolitan ice cream with a giant spoon watching the Chicago Bulls or boxing. I was around six, maybe seven, and would sit just under him on the floor looking up at him, pretending to be into whatever was on screen but really watching him take his time enjoying a small bowl filled to the brim with delicious Breyers ice cream.

EritreaI sat wanting but not asking. He seemed to savor every spoonful. I was afraid. I don’t think it was so much about his possible answer, than it was the fact that I was completely afraid to ask (sounds the the same right?). What right did I have to his ice cream? I could be precarious at times. The thing is, he knew how I mimicked his bites, that I wanted some yet he wouldn’t offer any. I wondered how long he would let this go on, and on he let it go.

On a day of severe cotton mouth, my mimicking had gotten out of hand, I mustered the courage to ask. I tried to practice in my head. It was a simple sentence, “Grandaddy, can I have some ice cream”.  I remember thinking, ‘say it like its nothing.’

Our TV time was just for us. We lived with my step grandmother and my four older siblings but somehow there would be times where they all somehow disappeared and it was him and I, the TV and ice cream. I’d stay quiet most of the time, I was a talkative child, but these moments would momentarily change that. He would light up, talk about the game, how the Knicks were awful, or about Tyson or was it Holyfield?

A entire lifetimes passed. I knew this alone time and the game would soon be over. My anxiety was mixing with already present fear- I needed to act NOW! I asked. He told me no. The “no” lingered and stung. Who was I to as- “Ask again in YOUR VOICE,” he demanded simply.  My fear presented itself in a shaky voice, inflections everywhere, which he may not have completely heard, as part of the sentence was likely a whisper. He was staring at me. I knew if I cried I would not get ANYTHING. I didn’t want to cry. I stared back at him, light brown eyes with speckles of dark brown, the whites of his eyes were yellowing. His skin looked impenetrable. Then I heard my voice, still and level.

“Grandaddy. May I please have some ice cream?”

I saw wrinkles emerge at the corners of his eyes, his face still serious, he got up and walked away. He fixed me a bowl of ice cream as big as my head. He rubbed my head gruffly pushing it back into the foot of the bed. I tried to hold back a smile. As it slowly escaped he sternly told me, stock-illustration-47471572-little-girl-eating-ice-cream

“You better eat it all too.”

 If you don’t communicate your wants and needs how do you expect them to be fulfilled?


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