Banter on Tulips and a Tribe Called Quest, Jay-Z and John Coltrane, Outkast and Othello.


PSA: Naps at the Bar

Anyone who knows me knows that I love Philadelphia. The Roots. Grover Washington. Patti Labelle. Jill Scott. South Street. Water ice. Cheesesteaks. Sigh. Just, the whole deal. Being here for the summer has been grand, in general.

But there are just some things about the City of Brotherly Love (and Sisterly Affection) in which, I would rather not partake: 1) It smells when it rains. 2) It smells when it doesn't rain. 3) The homeless men are very aggressive in trying to spit game. (But most times, they just spit.)

But aside from all of that, there really is just one thing I cannot stand about Philly...

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Exhibits A-Z: Men with Thick, Nappy Beards!!!

A Huey P. Newton, H. Rap Brown-sized 'Fro growing on the bottom of your chin and cheeks is not, I repeat, NOT okay. The Honorable Elijah Muhammad does not approve!!!!!! So, let me tell about this afternoon. It was lunchtime. So, I went to Cosi to get a Greek salad. Once I got inside, I looked at the row of people standing at the Salad Bar, preparing the food. The three people appeared as if this was their first stop out of the correctional facility, as all suffered from disgrunted expressions and excessive tattoos. But this was all very minor to me compared with one man, who had to be Rick Ross' illegitimate brother. I'll call him The Boss.

So, I noticed that the Boss, who later dumped vinaigarette dressing in my bowl, had a six inch afro around his face. Aside from that hirsuite having to be extremely unpleasant in the summer, I can't imagine having to wash comb and dare I say Blue Magic grease that mess every day. Anyway, impolite as it was, I couldn't help but stare in spates in between discussing it with my co-worker friend with whom I stood in line. A quick recap:

Me: Do you think I'll have crispy naps in my tomatoes and tandori chicken? I really don't like naps in my food.
Her: [Laughing] He has a net around it.

But like Doubting Thomas, I did not believe. I tried not to stare at the beard as The Boss asked what kind of dressing I preferred. It was then that I realized -- great day in the morning -- she was right! Sure as I'm standing, The Boss had a hair net around his beard. Pop, pop, pop went my mind to quote LeVert. I looked closer to confirm, eyes blinking incredulously as if I had happened upon a pot of gold. Or a unicorn. Surely not a full-sized hair net was requried to cover this nappy monstrosity? But alas. It. was. As I struggled to remain standing whilst silently humming "Nearer My God to Thee," I hoped for inner peace. The end of the war. For the sun to always set in the west. For birds to fly back north for Spring. And for nappy afro Philly beards to just please, please go away!!

As I closed my eyes, a Public Service Announcement came to me in a dream just like I was Joseph with that Coat of Many Colors (but better shoes). The PSA read "Notice to all: Thou whilst not weareth a nappy beard unless your job includes bringing sugar plums and joy to all the children of the world on Christmas day. Amen and Amend"

And with that, I clicked my heels three times and went on Home to Glory. *Cough* I mean, of course, back to work...