Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Dey Shootin'! Dey Shootin!!

Everywhere you go, there you are. Whoever said that was probably lost in the Bronx for quite some time...

My roommate and I were in the cozy comforts of our basement studio (still recovering from the flood, mind you), and as I wandered into the bathroom I distinctly heard the following:

Pow! POW-POW!!

As I checked the back of my pants, my roommate called out in fearful fashion. "Will? What was that? What was that??" Knowing that if I told her the truth, she would likely fret and fit and give me a really hard time, because that's what girlie-girls do in situations like that, I responded, "it was just a car backfiring." I had intended to wash clothes later, but now I was kinda feeling the funk as I pondered whether to find out what happened or just pretend that it didn't happen.

But you see, this is the Bronx. You can never hide from things like this, because it comes around even when you least expect it. My neighborhood is rather quiet and residential in appearance, and it's likely most of us would like to keep it that way. Pretending that it didn't happen is not an option that you should consider, because one day it might come closer to home than you could imagine, and then what... do you want everyone to pretend it didn't happen?

So I gathered my clothes and trekked outside on my way to the laundromat. The first thing I encountered as I went up the driveway leading from the back of the house to the street was the yellow tape. Crime scene tape. There were people standing around in groups, watching all the police wander around the street, entering and leaving the house two doors to our right. The people turned and stared at me, frowning. I considered asking what happened, but the tense looks I received told me to not bother, just go on about my business.

That would have been fine with me, except that as I went along and heard a group of teens laughing as they observed the scene, I became perplexed. Then as I was away from the scene and entered the laundromat, where no one had any notion that anything was amiss, I received the same hard stares I did at the crime scene.

Interesting what our priorities are, eh? But maybe I'm being harsh. If things like this are happening in the last place you would suspect, then I don't blame people for being more than a little tense. Nevertheless, I don't find any of it acceptable, so perhaps the best course of action is to not accept it, and move away from it. I find it difficult to deal with a person or people that accept violence as an unchangeable fact, but we're all entitled to call each other wrong. Right?


macedonia said...

mount vernon's the same way. every time i hear something that sounds like a firecracker off in the distance, i have to wonder is it gunplay. i had no idea that i was living in bloods territory until one of the kids living downstairs from me informed me of that little tidbit.

Chyll Will said...

Here's hoping that's all he knows about it. I saw what looked like the makings of skirmishes down the hill by the corner store where the traffic light is (like that means anything to anyone else but you and me); with that info in mind it's now not nearly as bucolic as I had thought.

And even KJ has been hit by this stuff first-hand, right at his own front door.

We're worried about terrorists in Iraq when we've had them here in our own backyards and front doors for how long now? Amazing what you can do with $1 billion a day; drinking a glass of clean water has more value than that nowadays...

Anonymous said...

I saw something very interesting on my walk to the City Market on Thursday... on the Delaware Street bridge sidewalk, something that looked very much like a large, drying-in-the-sun puddle of blood, and unmistable, two teeth! Definitely not something you see every day in Kansas City. I asked my landlady is she heard any sirens, and she said no. Makes you wonder.