A Hole in My Drawls

        Here boy, put these on!!! What you mean put these on, they got holes in’em and they look like Ron’s old ass drawls momma. The last time you gave me a pair of his underwear, my left ball fell out during recess. I swear, say something ig’nit about these Hand-Me-Downs one more time, or imma chop you square tweenst yo throat boy. (Whispering under my breath), How in the hell I’m supposed to get a girl with these old ass Thundercat underwear on. Hell, Lion-O is supposed to have an afro but this muthaphucka got a perm now.

Hand-Me-Downs or as we eloquently entitled them Hammy Downs were prevalent within the Hall household. It started way before we were born. Hell, I think I had a baby outfit my grandfather wore back in 1918. I always wondered why I looked like an indentured servant in my toddler pictures, sitting on my momma’s lap, looking like Crispus Attucks. You see, our mother would take items from her sibling’s that didn’t make any sense to us. She would take a potato bag and sew it up into four pair of drawls for each of my siblings to wear. Have you ever tried to out run a dog wearing mesh potato material?

Looking back on all the items that were handed-down to us, I can honestly say that those articles of clothing were re-stitched with love from a wonderful mother who understood the importance of survival mode. She always knew how to keep our ass warm at all costs or lack thereof… So when you think about handing down a piece of garment to a loved one, leave drawls off the list…

Shelia Lynn

I have mentioned her a few times in my posts so I thought I should welcome her to the world of Social Media… I chose this picture because I love the poise she displays with her afro centric hair, to the double butterfly collars. What’s Up Momma!!!

Shelia Lynn

Little Debbie Cakes…


I can recall the first time I got ahold of my first plastic wrapper that hugged that oatmeal crème pie together; Sweet Jesus!!!Our mother would ask; yawl want a snack!!! Uhmm; Hell Yea we want a snack. Shoot, asking if we wanted a snack was like asking Blackmon if he wanted a bottle of Jheri curl juice for his curly on a hot sunny day… Now, Blackmon was an old school dude, with one of those imma whoop yo azz curls. You know the ones that never received dat kuuussst of spray mist of jheri curl juice…

Normally, we would always receive something sweet after a good ass whooping… Our momma would whoop our ass and then they try to explain why she did it over a honey bun? Now listen baby, what you AIN’T FIDNA do is back talk ya momma, ya hear? Now here is a Honey Bun baby…

Is this a plot for her to strike me once more for talking back? I mean, I can’t turn down this delicious honey bun she has in her hands so I teeter-totter close; protecting myself at all times. The more I think about this trade off makes me wonder if this is how my ancestors arrived to the Free World. I mean, a fresh oatmeal pie will make my ass board any boat. Come he’un boy, I got sum’em fer ye’s… Dayuuuuum, is dis crème in da middle of dis muthaphucka!?!!?

As a child, my fascination for Little Debbie’s ran rampant; I would wake up in cold sweats craving for the delicious taste of wafers smothered in peanut butter. They were called Nutter Butter’s but in the Hall family, we called them Dead Man Toenails. Unbeknownst to our mother, she created a monster, so she tried her best to deter us from the sweets; and she created a name to make us stop eating them. Umm, that didn’t help, not at all… It only made us want them more.

Momma, can we have some more Dead Man Toenails please? Schiiid, here I am trying to fool deez Negroes with my colloquialisms and they turn it against me, dayum fockers. Oooh don’t let a holiday come around and Walmart put out their famous Be My Valentine cakes or them Christmas Tree cakes, which was nothing more than a Zebra cake in different colors and sprinkles…

You see, they couldn’t fool me with their advertisements, I was one step ahead of the game because we tried them all!!! Oatmeal Crème Pies, Fudge Rounds, Star Crunch, Banana Pudding Rolls, Fancy Cakes, and the list goes on!!! However, I was never a fan of the Raisin Cakes; they looked like roaches on top of bread to me…

Cutting grass and doing yard work was a typical job for us as kids growing up in Harriman. The best yard I had to cut was for R.C. Hill aka Rufus. He was firm but fair and taught me many life lessons. I would work all day in his yard and at the end, he would pull out his wallet and hand me $30, give or take. In which I would run full speed to White Stores to get my fix for the weekend.

While Panting; Little Debbie came out with a new cake called Swiss Rolls, I can’t wait to get a box of dem suckas!!! They say you can peel the layer back and it got dat crème filled middle. I’m finna phuck a whole box up on the way back to da house…

True to my word, a whole box demolished within 15 minutes, while the remnants where disposed in our family trash can. My mother walks in to my room and says, “So let me get this clear; you gonna work all day long and spend ALL your money on Little Debbie’s!!!” You know when yo momma bite her bottom lip and her nose flare up like James from Goodtimes. Brace yourself because that right hand is gonna rare back like she Serena Williams playing for match point at Wimbledon.

When you get older, its not about the actual hit, it’s more of the talk while she is hitting you, before and afterwards.. Pow, smack upside da head.Now let me see dat bytch in my trash can again!!!” My mother has been blessed with an amazing amount of grandkids, all which are of mixed race; except for my son. Most would say well why you are the only one that does not have a bi-racial child. Umm, after that smack, back in ’86; I ain’t put a white girl in my momma’s trash can nor brought her thru the front door of her muthaphuckin’ house…

Shoe Shopping with my Mom…


Have you ever been thumped upside yo forehead by your momma with her middle fangah because you didn’t like the style of shoes she purchased for you with her hard-earned money? Reach yo head up hereTHUMP now say something else bout deez dayum shoes again!

But momma, imma get my azz whooped tomorrow if I wear these shoes to school… You go to school to learn and not for a fashion show boy… Well that may have worked for you when you were going to school momma but it’s the 80’s and people don’t buy shoes at Pic n Pay anymore, erie body goes to Edwards Shoe Store on Roane Street.

You see Edwards Shoe store had all the latest brand name shoes and cleats. They had a pair of Tony Dorsett cleats I wanted so bad!!! I begged my momma to buy me a pair to play football in but she hit me with.. To play football in? Boy you won’t even tackle your dayum shadow and got da nerve to ask me for some shoes that cost $40, negro please!

I was used to the tough criticism so I brushed it off and found myself day dreaming about the cleats that I wanted so bad… Mmm, I can see myself running for a touchdown with deez all white Tony Dorsett’s with the Dallas Cowboy Star on the side! All da light-skinned girls will be calling my name and erie thang.

My daydream would be awaken with a Deacon Jones smack upside the forehead by my momma, talking bout.. Take yo goofy azz outside and play boy… There were levels to our shoe game as a kid… We started out with Pro Champs then onto Cougar shoes from Pic n Pay to Reebok’s onto Nike shoes but when my brother Tim would come into town, he would have the latest style of shoes and I would be green with envy.

However, one particular summer before 6th grade, he came down and had a cold ass pair of black crush velvet hi top Jordache shoes. I was floored when I saw them; I mean Tim could rock anything and he would look good doing it… He said, don’t worry lil brother, I bought you a pair too. Wow, you bought me a pair!?!!? I slapped dem crushed velvet’s on and turned’em sideways and said imma kill deez suckas da first day of school with deez boyz!

I couldn’t wait for the first day… I walked in the gym to sign in as a 6th grader, legs shiny from all dat baby oil I slapped on and dem crush velvet’s were brushed to perfection and when I sat down, dey killed my ass!!! I mean, burnt me to a crisp yawl.. Negro is dem girl shoes you got on? Naw maine, deez boys shoes, my my my brudda gave dem to me… Naw cuz, dem is girl shoes and they velvet too, HELL NAW! Aye don’t touch my shoes, LEAVE ME ALONE! The entire gym was rolling at my ass, I mean that was the longest day in my life at school..

You know when you have a hole in yo sock and you put that other foot on top to cover that hole so no one else can see it; well dammit that’s how I sat the entire day at school. Shoes had me sitting cross cross applesauce all day long! I couldn’t wait for that dayum bell to ring!

Do you remember Forrest Gump when he dropped his son off at the bus stop for his first day of school? Well he didn’t want his son to endure the tough criticism he received as a child but the little feller told him he would be just fine and introduced himself to the mean bus driver. Hi, I am Forrest, Forrest Gump… I think we all have had that moment in lives where we wanted to steer our children away from making bad decisions we made when we were in their shoes right.

Well, I have a son now, I took him to the Nike Outlet and said pick out any shoe you want son, and he said eh, mmm, hmm I don’t like any of these shoes daddy… I said, boy look at these Jordan’s, don’t you like them? They’re okay, I guess – and we eventually agreed to purchase them for his first day of school.

When we arrived home from shopping, there was a big box on the doorstep and it read: To Da’Ron From Granny Shelia and he eagerly opened the box to find all types of school supplies that were on his list, Thank God, right parents? Well at the bottom of the box were a pair of Walmart – Bruce Lee slip on shoes and he said Whoa, look what Granny Shelia bought me, I love these shoes and said I’m wearing these the very first day of school! So I let him wear these shoes and when I walked him to class, 85% of the kids in that school had the same style of shoes.

Thirty plus years later, my mother still enjoys shopping for shoes; not for me but for my son and I am thankful for that kind gesture. Its something I hope and pray my son will tell his children about the Bruce Lee slip-ons he received one day.

Cake Table and Mean Lunch Lady…


              In order to maintain the cake table, the church had to put the mean lunch lady in charge of the table which was sitting to the side of the Fellowship Hall, over by the old piano that no one ever used. Now the mean lunch lady also served as the disciplinarian of the church, so she was very well aware of the thieves in the church.

She wore black stockings with all white Sassoon shoes, you know da ones with the Pee Wee Herman heels, all white nurse’s outfit and she meant business upstairs and downstairs… She would make her rounds during devotion with a loose program and demand that you spit out your chewing gum while the deacons sang and prayed. She was so smooth with it, no one ever knew she was slick cussing us out one by one but she did… Thought I told yawl ashy knuckle Negroes no moe charring gum dering Devotion, spit it out and I mean now!!!

We obliged and gave up the stash but we knew that cake was in store downstairs… However, she would be waiting on us at the bottom of the steps… Listen up you dayum Hall’s; what we ain’t finna have all you heathens running around trying to sneak extra pieces of cakes today, ya understands me!!!

This was not a question, this was a statement and we were very well of the repercussions that stood before us had we been caught and best believe me, we were going back as many times as we could. Hey, you nappy headed lil phucka; how many cakes have you had already? Umm just one, buh buh but my momma told me to come up here and get her a coconut cake that Mrs. Pat made.  Come up he’un one moe time and imma smack you so hard that you gone find out who yo real daddy is…

             I’ve always wondered how many cakes St Mary’s made for Homecoming. It had to be at least 37 because we had over 1000 slices at our disposal. I mean the table would be set with all types of delicious cakes and as soon as you take one, they would put another one right in its place. You be licking yo fingers saying “Dayum they just put another slice on the table yawl and it’s a red velvet cake this time.

I bet Talyon’s momma made that one. She look like she can make a Red Velvet cake. Why you say that cuz? Because she light skinned and she look like Claire Huxtable and she smell like fresh peppermints. You see, I always judged the cake by the person, my peers considered me a Cake Connoisseur. Now, Mrs. Pecola made the Carmel Pound cake, because it was short and thick with that tan icing on the top. PREACH BOY! I’m trying to do da best that I can…
Okay, who made the German chocolate cake?
Oh Aunt Deb made that one but you gotta eat one nem cakes fresh out the oven because if you eat one cold, its like eating oatmeal on dark skinned bread. Ahite Ahite, so I bet you don’t know who made the Sock It To Me cake… WHAT!?!?! I can tell by the way the white icing drips thru each crevice of cake cuz.. Don’t nobody narramate that cinnamon and pecans tweenst dat Yellow Duncan Hines mix better than Aunt Oneida…

Then there was the Lemon Meringue pie, which was prepared by Mrs. Alberta. That was one nem old folks pies that we never ate. Here boy eat this pie, I don’t want that old ass pie, it smells like Mrs. Alberta’s house. What does Mrs. Alberta’s house smell like then? Funky ice, like she needs a box of baking soda in her freezer and fridgerator. I was never a fan of The Peach Cobbler or Apple Pie.

I just didn’t like the fact of wet fruit mixed in with my cake. Ms. Ciola used to make dem Carrot Cakes while Ms. Juanita would bring dem two layer chocolate cakes, you know the one where you can’t breathe after you finish eating them because it got too much chocolate on it so you beat your chest like you the Incredible Hulk trying to breath?

           Now that we are grown; and have moved from the comforts of our home churches, we notice that the Fellowship Halls have changed. I attend a Mega Church and I honestly can say that I’ve never been invited to a Homecoming dinner, Pastor’s Anniversary or an Usher’s Tea. So I reflect back on the good ole days and thank God for the mean lunch lady and the cake table. Without those events in our lives, we wouldn’t have received the structure from our elders. It takes a village to raise a child and my mother understood the mean lunch lady’s tactics so she watched from a far in hopes that one day her kids would understand the difference between right and wrong.