Journal

The 2 Street Chronicles: Bad Reunion II.

Part II. Soldiers of God Ten minutes of silence was broken by the sounds of his return. If you didn't know better you would have thought a mob of rioters with bullhorns were walking up the street. But it was just Joe and two friends who had happened by. When I saw who he brought back with him, my heart began to race. I had to swallow a deep chill in order to put my game face on. Those spidey senses were ringing off the chart. Joe introduced Mick and Monk (I'm not joking) Mick was a skinny bald guy who looked like he had dressed up as GG Allen for halloween. He was decked out in leather...

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The 2 Street Chronicles: Bad Reunion I.

Part I. Everyone's Pal There are different levels of criminal. By level, I don't mean category like, shoplifter or hit man. I mean level of intensity, level of energy they subconsciously put off. If you've floated around the underbelly enough you feel it. I think it has to do with how much time they spend in the system, their experiences start to permeate their being. A hard con's mere presence lets you know how dangerous he is. You can tell the difference between a tough guy suburbanite and a city ghetto thug. Sometimes the guy asking for change is a harmless drug addict, sometimes you know...

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The Enunciation of a Muse

The young girl is the metaphorical idealization of my artistic muse that I have carried with me since a teenager. The abstraction of who, when and where I first realized that my own creative expression was something I would spend my life needing to pursue. -She is blindfolded so that I will not be distracted. -In her left hand she holds a pistol so that I will not be stopped. -In her right hand she holds a spread of tarot cards because I know my destiny. -her ankle is shackled to a weighted ball so that I stay grounded. -She lounges surrounded in an opulent cornucopia of fruits, flowers...

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Street Zombies, Lost Gods and A City Full of Ghosts: Spring Garden After Midnight

I started using the term Street Zombie when I was living in Northern Liberties. For those of you not from Philadelphia, Northern Liberties is now a very posh, hip, artsy neighborhood. But it wasn't always like that. The D.I.N.K. gentrification (duel income no kids) really swept the area fast because it was all but abandoned. There were no old working class families holding out against the dog parks and B.Y.O. bistros. You didn't see the cloistered blue collar culture clash by those who felt like their multi generational neighborhood was being invaded by outsiders, like you do now in South...

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Fuck you Bobby Digital, I Almost Lost My Mind

So I'm sitting in my little office the other day, home alone. No tv on, no music playing. Suddenly I hear in this low, deep voice, barely addible someone say "yo" Now this isn't odd since I live in south philly, but it's usually someone standing on the side walk outside our living room window. Usually something more like "Yo Mikey, not for nuthin' but when yah gonna move yer fuckin' car?" This was a little different. My office is on the second floor of my house. The windows sealed tight to protect my prints from my own absent mindedness when it rains. Then I hear it again. "yo" What...

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Robert vs. Traffic

No matter what city you live in, people complain about drivers. There seems to be a true cliched belief that every city can proudly claim the most reckless and incompetent. So I'm not going to say Philly has the worst drivers, but my experience with them has always been tense. Especially since I don't drive any more. My feet are my main mode of transportation and being a pedestrian, I feel like I am literally at war with those who sit behind a wheel. The main battle ground- stop signs. The drivers in Philly seem to resent the idea of a stop sign. It's a suggestion, or a warning that they...

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Robert Brown Number 1 Success III.

Part III. Work will set you free And so, the sales madness began. Or perhaps, the lack of madness began. Employees of the Small Accounts Division made their bonus' based on the size of the phone bills of the accounts they got. But since you have to wait for the bills to come in, they offered large starting bonus' to get employees through the first couple of months. But I knew I was only going to be there for two more months. Being the smartest man working for the Sprint Corporation, I came to the logical conclusion that there just wasn't any profit in making new sales. And seriously,...

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Robert Brown Number 1 Success II.

Part II. The greatest prize The Sales division was a surreal environment. While it had all the trappings a stale corporate office, they also had a mandate to keep the staff motivated and in a state of "high energy." There were balloons everywhere. Managers with bull horns and silly hats wandered through the building screaming out encouragement. Whistles and noise makers were constantly going off around the building as people made sales. A never ending stream of announcements of incentives were being called out. The team that has the best customer revenue stats for the week gets a free...

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Robert Brown Number 1 Success I.

Part I. Surreal world My last job in New Mexico was my first real foray into "the real world" and how it did terrify me. I had all but finished school and knew the exact day set for the move. Christianne was bouncing back and forth between Philly and Albuquerque making all of the arrangements, doing the packing. My only chore was to sludge to a day job for three months and save us some money. There is something so freeing about knowing exactly when you are going to get out. I got hired as a small business accounts rep for Sprint. The job was part good old fashioned telemarketing, part...

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Trash Storm

If you haven't been to Philly, you might not know that it is one of the dirtiest cities in the United States. I reside in South Philly where the trash collectors give a shit even less than the residents and there is no street cleaning service. There are third world cities that have less garbage on the streets. Now wading through piles of trash, I mean walking on the sidewalk can be pretty sick, but today was a new experience. You see today we had mad crazy March winds. My wife and I were out running errands on foot and the winds were shoving so hard one had a difficult time standing...

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