Sunday, September 14, 2008

Breakin' It Down fo' Christ in the Ghetto

On Friday night, I had an invitation to go to a house party (of about 30 people) in a cute little suburb of Philadelphia at Sharon’s house. Club Worship was also an enticing invitation, where my friend Thomas was going to be spinning not only the records but also himself on the dance floor with his breakdancing moves.

I declined both, however, and opted for an eyebrow wax and a quiet dinner date with my apartment. Actually, that’s not true. I came home and had an online conference with my friend Jackie (since we are both bridesmaids in Lija’s wedding), and together we spent an hour ironing out details and deadlines for the shower and bachelorrette party. (Thank God for our Wikispace!)

The normal Lisa would never want to stay home on a Friday night. But spending a week with 130 seventh graders really tires a girl out!

At the 11th hour (well, really, the 2nd hour of Saturday morning), Thomas bagged on our Saturday daytime plans via text message, so I went solo to Philly and met up with Jon at his sister’s house, and we went to a Trip Lee, Lacrae, and Tadashii show in the North East ghetto.

It was the second-most fun event I did this summer!! The block party closed Diamond Street between 16th and 17th, and as we arrived around 12:30 PM, Jon’s tricked out car got a lot of stares. One dude actually thought Jon must have been a celebrity and specifically asked him (with honest, excited eyes) if he was the drummer of that punk rock band, Blink 182. Hahaha. Travis Barker has a few more tattoos, though.

When we arrived, a pack of black girls (our age) immediately ran up to Jon and I, fussing, actually, over both of our attires. That was cute, and we felt welcomed into the scene instantly. Later, the girls ended up showing off (in unison) their incredible dance moves, and one of them actually rapped on stage! She was the only female rapper that day out of about 20 different rap artists. Cool!

The church that organized the event (Epiphany Fellowship) gave out free fried fish and water ice all day long. I ate the first few bites thinking it was chicken. Ha!

Eventually we met up with Jon’s sister Sharon, her husband Nate, and two of their friends. A handful of guys breakdanced, and that was quite a sight to see. I even met a guy who had my name tattooed on his bicep, and since I've never seen my name in tattoo ink before, I simply HAD to get a picture with him. He was very friendly but did a tough guy pose for the picture. Hahaha. Maybe it was so that his girlfriend wouldn't get jealous.

When the big-name rap artists started hitting the stage, Jon and I parted ways with our friends and went deep into the thick of the crowd, inching our way to the front. I expected to like Trip Lee the best, and while he was indeed fabulous, I actually got lost in the music when Lacrae came on. The chorus of “Send Me, I’ll Go!” had me pumping my fist in the air and jumping up and down as I pounded my chest with my other hand. It was probably the most cathartic experience I’ve ever had in public, and it lasted the whole 3.5 minutes of the song. My blood was pumping and I was panting when the song was finished! Ah, music is such a beautiful thing. It makes you feel SO ALIVE.

Around 7 PM, we left the block party and returned to Sharon and Nate’s house, where some people were still there from the party the night before. At this point, my skin was pink from the sun and sticky from sweat, so I passed on going to the Catholic Underground, declined Thomas’ voicemail offer to join him at The Gate (a new Christian dance club in Harleysville), and called it a night.

That night I could have also gone with my friend Nate (a different Nate from the aforementioned) to an expensive benefit dinner in Washington, DC, but I had declined the invitation knowing there just wasn’t enough hours to complete my Philly plans and then make it to another metropolis in the same day.

When I got home, I got an call from my friend Josh (who’s away in the military and will soon be deployed for Iraq), and we caught up briefly. He thanked me again for giving him a Brown Scapular, and I was happy to hear that he appreciated it.