Today has been an amazing day. I know i might have said that a lot in the past few days, but its true. This program has turned out to be one of the best decisions I have ever made. Today's assingment was to go to a certain part of Manhattan, and interview people about how the economy has affected them personally and what struggles they are going through especially if they have a business, family, etc. My assigned part was Harlem. I was the only one in my group who knew about it, and exactly were to go. So we went out to interview folks and had to send the info through text message back to people who stayed behind so they could write up all the info everyone else sent. This went amazingly well, and i will be writing my own story of what happend shortly.
We went to dinner (on WJI lol) and had a great time learning more about each other and what we wanted to do with our lifes. I had the best Calamari I have EVER had, and I've eaten a LOT of Calamari. The night assignment was to go out and talk to someone who looks hopeful...to talk about what give them hope.
This was the most difficult assignment I've had yet. What does hopeful look like? How do you ask someone if they are hopeful?
My buddy Andrew Terpstra was with me, and he wasn't really comfortable with interviewing someone by himself. Being the good person that I am, I saw someone reading the bible by themselves and knew that they would be easy to talk to. So, I let Terp have 'em.
Thing is, the rest of the night, NO ONE would talk to me. I got shot down at least 4 times. But this one african woman was about to let me interview her, but she didnt want me to record her. I (like a fool) didn't bring my pen and pad with me. So, i just left her to search for others. But she stopped me and said she needed a journalist.
When I asked her for what, she showed me a her website called professional-blackwoman.com or something like that. It sounded like she needed help, but she didnt even have like an office or anything, it was just something she started. She kept saying we, but never said any names or anything. Her english was ok, but she had a very thick acccent. She kept talking to me for like 20 minutes, further decreasing my chances for getting someone else to talk to me. But then she said the magic words "We don't pay, but we hope to pretty soon. We offer unpaid internships." The question that kept floating in my mind was....."Who?"
So eventually I gave her my information. Interesting experience right?
I would love to say after that I got someone to talk to me but I didn't. No happy endings here. What I did get out of it were some of the funniest things I had ever seen or heard in my life. There's one quote that is too explicit for me to put on here lol. But ask me and I'll tell you through another avenue.
The defining moment of the night was a guy walking past Terpstra and I with a McDonald's straw, and what Ibelieve to be a leaf from a tree sticking out from it yelling "Roses for sale! I got Roses for sale here!" Mind you, all he has in his hand is one McDonald's straw, and some type of vegetation.
Then the guy walks past me, as I look to see if he really believes he is selling roses. He then proceeds to tell me "Don't hate brotha, don't hate on this." After dying out of laughter and utterr shock, i could only say one thing-
I love New York City