No Time Like The Present
So Pastor has just preached a meaningful and poignant message. My notes are like super hot fire. Arms are waving, bodies upstanding, hands clapping, and the entire congregation has just made the Jericho-wall-tumbling declaration – “God will perfect everything that concerns me!’. Now for the dreaded part – the bit where we have to say it to our neighbour.
I turn to the left, I meet his eye, and say it with as little awkwardness as I can help, and I return my face forwards. Job done. I ignore the snapshot I had of a familiar small smile creeping up the side of his mouth.
I sense movement, and out of the corner of my eye I see a torso lean forward, then to the right.
Last week after mentioning to someone that I was obsessed with American TV shows, she made the recommendation to me to watch a 4 part drama that was currently on Channel 4 called ‘Run’.
Usually when it comes to British shows, I’m a bit apprehensive, but she did say it was ‘really good’, and to be honest, I have barely any American shows to watch, and I’ve felt restless about this, so I thought I’d give it a try.
And I’m so glad I did.
In the past as a black person, you could inhabit the metropolis of London and the only people who would know your name, date of birth, and location, was your mother, your father, your grandparents and a few close friends. Not so in 2013.
I argue from a perspective that where previously it used to be somewhat endearing and a nice little surprise to discover you had mutual friends (cue squeals and smiles of pleasure), it is increasingly becoming a hindrance to progress and something of a ball and chain (cue wariness masked with a polite ‘Oh. That’s great’). Why? Because of the minority nature of the community in the first place, combined with the fact that people love to talk about one another. And what do gossips love best? Bad news, scandal and defamation of character.
Nothing travels faster and with more relish than these three elements, and the recent surge in the use of social networking, has the ability to amplify any such themed information tenfold, and to spread it to every corner of the earth, even to a gecko languishing in the bark of a tree in the very middle of the Amazon rainforest.
I was invited to the launch on 1st June 2013 to a new store in Angel Islington called Brew Box, specialising in Taiwanese bubble tea. I went never having had bubble tea before, and honestly most attempts by people prior to my visit to describe to me what bubble tea is were confusing/uninspiring. However, it meant I went with an open mind and genuine curiosity about this place I had heard so much about.
I don’t believe in waffling for the sake of it, so I’ll cut straight to the chase – it was a really great experience for a number of reasons:
1. I was treated with so much attentiveness by store co-owner Albert Yanit (below), and his staff, friends, and family, who with their genuine passion for the business of bubble tea, liveliness, and willingness to explain what several things I ate that I’d never tried before were, made me feel really welcome and quite honoured to be around them. The service was impeccable.