Stories from the Vault of Crystal

It was a 3 day cruise. I covered both tickets. I made arrangements to get both of us to the ship and I would ride home solo so that I could get to work. Also, I was informed, “I’m a grown ass man and can take care of myself.” We shall revisit that statement.

This was in the time way before Uber was even a twinkle in transportation’s eye. It was taxi cab or taxi cab. Upon arrival to the port, my luggage was ready to go. He began calling friends at 6am to come get him. No one answered. Not a one. All of the men that frequented his home on a regular basis and not one person responded. I began to hear the frustration in the form of low “man”, sighs, and the sucking of teeth.

I pretended not to notice the sudden gaze upon my person as a solution. “Eh”. I’m assuming that translates to hey. I looked in his general direction. “Let me hold ten dollars.” I blinked and asked why. “So I can catch a cab…”. I don’t know a lot about cab fare but I’m going to venture that a ride from the port of Miami to Miami Lakes and then to Miami Gardens was way more than $10.00. However, I brought enough cash to take care of myself…especially since I was told, “I’m a grown ass man and can take care of myself…”

Seventy Five Cents

She reached out to him to attend a cultural function in support of the cast. This mysterious gesture came after a long period of him stringing her along after many protests from family and friends. He happily agreed to attend; however, he refused to drive the long distance. She would have to travel south to the MetroRail to pick him up so that everything could be at his convenience. In exchange for this kind gesture, he offered to take her to dinner. They ended up at a cafe for coffee and truffles.
The bill came after wonderful conversation and a nice leisurely dessert. He reached for the receipt which boasted a grand total of: $2.00. He strained for his wallet and quickly suggested that she take care of the tip which was $.75. After this infuriating exchange, she then drove south again to drop him off at the train station so that he could avoid driving such a distance to spend time with her.
A woman has to have enough self-respect not to allow herself to be treated in such a manner. Before you settle for something less than happiness, being alone is a valid option which is scary for many . This is due to the fact that they are unable to enjoy the richness of their own company. There is a lack of self discovery that has yet to manifest which is then placed on another party. If you are unable to make yourself happy, the responsibility should not be given to someone else with the expectation of being saved. You have to do your homework if you plan to pass the class.

The Pesky Question Mark

The lively Facebook conversation led us to meet in real life. He was eager to talk and be social. We drove around North Miami in search of nourishment. His conversations insinuated that he would be interested in being more than a friend. His accent sounded British, and he had a rather feminine quality. After being simply famished, Taco Bell looked rather appetizing. Please remember that this is being written in retrospect.
The statement of friend vs. lover arose. This left a question mark in my mind. There are certain things that a man will do if he is trying to get to know a woman. He had not made any of those strides as evident by my dinner bill. Upon the stroke of midnight, I dropped him off at a bar at his request. Yet another question mark arose in my head….a man that wants to go to a bar at midnight?
He had agreed to perform his poetry at my fundraiser for Haiti. The earthquake left me in a state of sorrow for the beautiful people and this was my way of giving back; I presented artists of all genres to the community: bellydancers, poets, piano, vocal, musical theater…it was a show of shows. I went to pick him up hours ahead of the performance time. He voiced his displeasure with this. I explained that as the producer of this show it was important for me to be on the site to make sure that everything was in order; a problem had already been relayed to me.
Upon entering his place, his face went aghast at the sight of my outfit. He changed twice and was still unsatisfied. He told me to go and that he would catch the bus. After thirty minutes of the show being in full swing, he texted me to say that he would not be able to make it with an apology. What was my problem with this? He knew that he wasn’t coming when I left his place.
That pesky question mark appeared in my head again. This is someone that has a possible romantic interest in me? This certainly was not his best foot. I saw no need to keep in contact with someone that was so unclear about himself. Shortly after that, I noticed that we were no longer Facebook friends. Alas, there wasn’t a pesky question mark over this deletion.


We had seen a each other a few times. It was not anything that was going to change life but just time spent with another human being. The term boyfriend came up during a phone conversation one evening. He had a fit. I was quickly told that this was not a serious relationship and that he did not want there to be any misunderstandings. His words struck a chord with me and sent my mind into a deep pensive state.
I was very aware of the fact that this was not a serious relationship; however, the swiftness in which it was relayed to me was startling. The time that we did spend together was always cut short by a party that suddenly interrupted my Friday night. I was under the impression that Friday evenings were spent in social arenas. If you were seeing someone, the two of you entered such arenas together. That was not the case. Imagine planning to spend an evening with someone. You arrive. Perhaps a meal is shared. You settle in for the evening…only to hear, “I am going to a party tonight. What are you doing?”
Instead of investing any more time with such endeavors, I chose to inform this individual that since we were not girlfriend and boyfriend, perhaps we should act more like friends. My visits stopped. The calls vanished. Any form of communication on my part evaporated as I looked into other avenues of social developed along the lines of dating. It was not too long after this that strange phone calls in the middle of the night began.
It was late one Friday night. My phone rang with an unrecognizable number. I answered only to hear, “Do you miss me?”. My response indicated that I did not know whom was speaking. He seemed a bit confused that my expression did not even recognize his existence. Another few weeks went by. The phone rang again. “I just returned from a cruise to the Bahamas. I do not know why I kept thinking about you.” Hmmm……why didn’t you think about me prior to going on the cruise?
This is how people without an aim in life can deter your desires. I wanted a boyfriend but this individual wanted a friend that happened to be a woman. Once this was clear to me I moved on. Unfortunately for him, he still clinged to the notion that the illusion in his head was all I could possibly want. He soon impregnated another woman and married her. I am happy that it was not me.

The Childish Man

It was a nice leisurely brunch with a lovely friend. We ended up sitting outside because I was cold; again. It was not long before an SUV horn sounded for a rather lengthy moment before another vehicle crunched as it backed into it. It was a slow awful crunch that caught the attention of many a spectator. An arrogant man erupted from the four door Sedan. He assessed the damage that he caused to his car and promptly blamed the woman in the SUV. He continued to pace the street with an angry step. He tried to convince the woman to just let the accident go unreported. My friend watched the entire scene and approached her to be a witness to the fact that the man was guilty as hell. As I chewed on my tasteless Tilapia, the abusive actions of the man towards the lone woman were unsettling for me.
This man was guilty. The police officer told him that prior to issuing the ticket. Instead of making the process as smooth as possible, he tried to dismiss the ownership of his poor judgement and blamed the woman. I felt as if the scene would have played out differently had a man been in her company. In the middle of my meal, I approached her. I told her that I saw how he treated her and quite frankly, it was unwarranted. He did so because he was guilty as charged. He soon came to our table and acted happy that he was charged as if we were going to celebrate it. Instead he received a dumbfounded look of annoyance. This man was a mere child to me. One that lacked proper home training.
The woman came to our table after the entire ordeal and thanked us for our help. She calmly went about her way as we dug into some churros. She doesn’t know that my heart had palpitations when I heard that crunch. She doesn’t know that I went to her side because someone came to mine when I was in the middle of my accident. My friend was happy that I wanted to sit outside because that is why we were able to be of service. The morning subsided with the loud chirping of birds and a quick trip to the local food store.


It was finally time to replace my stolen license. There I was standing behind a man with all of my required documents. An elderly lady was using a rolling walker to get to the door. She was going to need help with the door. The man also realized this and went to hold the door open for her. Unfortunately, she became entangled in the long black rug on the floor. He prompty untangled her and held the door open for her. She looked at him and said, “Thank you my son.” He then followed her outside to her car. I am assuming that he was helping her out there as well. When he returned to the line, he stood behind me. I really wasn’t expecting that.
As I turned to him I smiled and said, “Didn’t you just help that woman by holding the door? That was very kind of you. Don’t you want your original spot in line?” He said yes, if I did not mind to which I responded that I did not. This man was willing to lose his place in line at the DMV a place that is a potential disaster for your nerves, to help this elderly woman whom he did not know. Chivarly lives. One point for mankind.


As my performance came to an end, I thought about how I was going to ask my mother to find a nice black scarf for my collection so that I could wear it while I am working. It was also a pressing need to contact the bank about the fraud text that was sent to my phone. Upon approaching my car, there were pieces of shattered glass everywhere. My car had been broken into and the beautiful bag that had been mine for less than a month was gone with all of my identification and cards inside. My brand new drivers’ license with a fabulous picture….gone.

Panic did not overcome me. I calmly dialed 911 and asked for assistance. While a police officer attended to my predicament, I was able to cancel all of my cards and the fraudulent activity had already been detected; some cards were blocked before I called. I was able to hand over locations of purchases to the police officer; phone apps rock! I found myself smiling at people and thanking them profusely during my unpleasant moment. No tears. I felt joy.

The problem of getting cash for gas was now an immediate concern as the light was about to flash. My emergency contact was out of reach. I decided to drive to my family home which was about thirty minutes away. Do you know that my gas light never came on? The rain also stopped. As I explained what happened to my father and brother, action immediately began. My brother made arrangements for the window to be fixed. He took the car himself to a gas station and filled it up. He gave me cash and asked if it was enough to tide me over until my new cards arrived. He handled the entire thing. It was clear to me that this situation may have happened to show me that there is a man in my life that is there for me besides my father; my brother. He went so far as to tell me how to conduct myself until the window could be repaired. A heartfelt thanks does not begin to express my sentiment about what he did for me this evening.

My bowl of oxtails sits beside my computer as I type away my thoughts this evening. My spirituality kept me in one pleasant piece this evening. There was no shock. No panic. No tears to signal the arrival of a nervous breakdown. There was clarity, smooth thinking, and thoughts of an immediate plan of action. My home has a garage where the car will stay until it is fixed. Its the rainy season but there is nothing for me to do tomorrow. My schedule book and ITOUCH were not in the bag much to my delight. The bag probably can’t be replaced but, I found a black scarf in my mother’s room which resembles exactly what I was going to ask her to find for me. Isn’t that amazing? Look at all of the wonderful things that went right for me. I am happy that I am in a place where I am able to appreciate the good things and understand why feeling this way is important. Why should my Saturday night be ruined when my evening wasn’t the best?
If you will pardon me now, there is a wine cooler with my name on it and maybe, a slice of cake as well.