Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The Day In The Life

So I work for a Church.

I guess I never really thought about what that meant, well, I have but it truly stood out today because Tammie was coming by and I realized before we got to painting the walls I had a lot of stops to make, it was like a police ride along, she'd be there to see firsthand exactly what I do.

So here it is, this isn't everyday but it's definitely one of them:

6:45am Prayer Meeting in the Cafe

Immediately after, or after some pancakes (really, dry and hard) and chatting we start our staff meeting.

Elaine, needs to get to work so we go mobile, hop into the church van (a beat up old, green Mercury Villager..I did some of the beating) and finish the meeting en route.

We get back and have a post meeting meeting about certain things that wouldn't count as official business.

Reply to a few emails, start work on my bio for an art show, I need to figure out how to embed a photo of myself in the top right corner of a Word doc. I also wish there were a way to reply to all when in the original I BCC'd everyone. I guess it's copy and paste.

11:00am Sergio and I drive over to Laney (the local community college) to pass out flyers to the Friday event, blood drive, games and movie: Slum Dog Millionaire. It was super easy, just having another person there with you makes it so much easier. Students were very receptive (why not, free food and movie) and we found out they even get extra credit if they donate blood. Ran into a two people I knew, one from a mural class I took last year and Jess, our neighbor, who happens to be a TA and asked if she could make copies to pass out in class, for the extra credit. Sweet.

12:20pm I go to pick Kev up for a lunch meeting at Taco Bell. I was a little early, waiting too long out front so the security guy came out and asked me to move forward out of the main area but let me stay. I saw Leonard walk by on his way back from lunch. Kev works for Urban Grace, a small church on the border of Emeryville and Oakland. We're trying to figure out ways to outreach, partner.

Get back and still try to mess with the email and get the picture on my word doc. I'm a computer idiot. Those yellow how to books for dummies, that's for me. And I send Jess the e-file for the flyers.

2:10pm Tammie gets here. We grab some flyers, not the quarter sheet but the full page ones and walk over to Rose of Sharon, assisted living facility. I run into the Pastor, I think his name was John but I don't want to risk it so I just call him Pastor. He's part owner of the facility and cool. I meet his associate Cozy. I ask if Ana Lew is around, he says in fact he's waiting on her now for a meeting. Now, the thing about Ana Lew is I've been very persistently trying to reach her for months, sometimes calling multiple times in a week. And never has she called me back. So she arrives and I finally meet her, she doesn't really look at and me and when I ask if she's gotten any of my messages she replies, "I actually tried to call back once and the number didn't go through." So that's the impression I get of her. I ask for an email address, she wants to leave, late for a meeting or so she claims, "Call me and leave a message." I will but will you call me back. Hopefully this time.

As we walk back to Regen to replenish our flyer supply we see a bunch of young Asian thugs sitting on the porch of their house. So I approach them and ask who lives here, one dude walks up. I ask his name. "Jimmy." He's studying business at Alameda City College. Full time student. He's actually my back neighbor I can see and hear Jimmy and co from my window. I've never spoken to him in 2 years. I always felt weird about that but finally we've made first contact, many more to come.

Vietnamese American Community Center of the East Bay. We walk a block and half over. Step in the door and Diep is on the phone in the back, she sees us. She called me the other day to ask if I wanted to come by and pick up some flyers for a tutoring service they provide for free. Anyhow, a voice from the back yells out "Dave Kim, back here!" So we walk back. Glen, the director just got done with his very late lunch, he apologizes for not having some taco truck burritos for us. Anyhow we stand and chat for maybe 15-20 minutes. Then he gets a call and we shake hands as he talks to the guy on the other line. As we walk back I explain how this kind of stuff makes my life hard, because it's difficult to ever plan anything, I always need at least a 30 minute buffer in between any appointment because you just never know. I mean this was supposed to be a quick flyer hand off, 2 minutes max, but it turned into a 20 minute conversation. I don't remember what it was about but it was important none-the-less because I'm developing a relationship. All the conversations that aren't supposed to happen are important. So that's how I live always uncertain of how schedule things.

We walk back, get in the car and drive 1 block down and 5 blocks down to the Intertribal Friendship House...we'd walk but we were on our way to the store. The building is a Native American community center. We park and walk up to it see nobody so as I'm peering in the window a lady walks over and unlocks the front door. Her name is Carol, she's the exec director for the center, we chat for a bit and then she invites us in. The place is huge; 2 pretty big sized event rooms and tons of classroom or offices, there was even a screen printing room which I requested to see. After the tour and getting the history of the place we finally left. She said if I go on the website and email her she'll email back and we'd be on touch. I've always had a special interest in Native Americans, ever since I was a kid. I've love to partner with them somehow. Most the events are open to the public too. All the classes are free, I really want to take the native dance class.

We get to the dollar store looking for lots of cheap chalk to no avail, but we do find two little boys with plastic gladiator helmets on running around with their swords.

So we go to Ace on Grand. Find the thin teachers chalk but decide to skip because we know teachers and they may have some. But we do pick up on can of chalkboard paint.

Get back and paint a big strip of black paint on the wall, barely covering the area we set out to do. During which one of our neighbors Tina comes by to talk and then Bao the 11 year old stops to see whats up as he walks the little dog given to him by Double D, the BBQ guy down the street. Now Duane (Double D) knows a lot of people, that's what happens when you run a store front and like to talk. He actually hooked me up with Glen at the Viet Center. Anyhow so we make an "Cafe Open" sign and another large "Give Blood" sign and then I leave to pick up paint.

Drive over to Sashas, the neighbor down the street and go through their house into the backyard to grab a ton of gallon paint cans that Matlena put back there for a project we were going to do. We need the paint for Friday, I got a guy committed to bringing his delivery truck in our lot so that we can paint a mural on it. After that I get into Elaines car and go to Berkeley for the weekly book club at Cafe Milano. Thank God Elaine got me tacos, I'd forgotten to eat.
After reading and discussing C.S. Lewis I ask Ken if the can drive me home. He agrees so we talk in the car on the way back. He crashed his car 2 days before, which I think is great because that's how it's supposed to be, he hasn't had the car more than a month and his license only a month more than that and he was learning how to drive up to the very day he got it. So I think it's always expected but it never happens except this time it did.

I get home finish placing that photo in my bio (thanks to Justin) and then go across the street to sleep. I want to read a little before but I don't think I made it.

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