Friday, December 9, 2011

A legend and a true legend

The day after. While cleaning up, Occupier Dan, aka DJ Nomad, notices my hat and asks what the G stands for.  I explain that it is for the Homestead Grays, the old Negro League from Pittsburgh, that the H on my jacket is for the same team. He laughs and says, And the legend grows. I look puzzled. Uh, he says that with some of the occupiers, you're a legend. Tell him what you guys call this place, says Amanda. The miracle on 86th Street, says Dan. I laugh.  Remembering the ticket seller at Laura's performance I say, Well that"s better than   you know, the creepy church.  Apparently they find being a part of a community different than just sleeping in a building.
There's a steady stream of congratulatory e-mails and phone calls. Most meaningful is the call from my mentor and true legend, George Todd. One of the co-founders of the ground breaking urban ministry East Harlem Protestant Parish, former PCUSA urban staff person, urban staff for the World Council of Churches in Geneva, former Presbytery of New york City Executive Presbyter, and in many ways a facilitator of the establishment of democracy in Korea through his arranging for leaders to find refuge at Stony Point, his words are especially  moving. He said that we have found our ministry. 
Luli from Noche Flamenca is in to try and finish negotiations. Now she is gravitating towards the chapel and the session room, spaces we really can’t afford to let go of. 
A conversation with Sandy goes in an unexpected direction. Stories about her apartment that would normally strain credibility.  Except...her story is almost identical to that of P_____, who I always assumed was just, well, paranoid. In both cases, there is a vulnerable single woman in a rent stabilized apartment rented at a fraction of market rate per month. There is a possibility of an organized harassment going on here that's at least worth exploring. I need to get them together.
Jason is tall, striking. He left a home and work in western Massachusetts to come join the Occupy movement. He has a particular responsibility related to finding meeting space and relationships. Making the relationship more formal would be helpful to both of us. Later, Amanda will go down to Occupy headquarters and talk for two hours to better understand where things are headed.  
Teddy's taking a look at the door that was damaged the other night when some people tried breaking in.  The gala was great, but now,all too soon, it’s back to business. 

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