For full disclosure, I currently reside in the Bay Area, made infamous by all the recent racist police calls made on black folks and their kids at barbecues, mowing the lawn, or selling water among many other things. But, this is not this type of situation.
This story goes like this…
It was the wee hours of the dawn, 2:45am on a Wednesday. I am woken up by some noises outside. I open my eyes. I check my phone….2:45am. What is this? I got up, went to the bedroom window and took a peak outside. There was a group of 10-12 people by the pool, fully clothed and chatting extremely loud. I wondered what kind of sorcery was this on a weekday. Was it me or were these people out of their minds. They could possibly not have been from the building and not know what a nuisance they were being to the rest of us? A few cars got broken into in the past few weeks, and my car door was completely scratched by some idiots. I got really annoyed! How did these guys make it into the building? What could have I done? I tried to go back to sleep but I couldn’t…Someone just turned on the music. It was now 3:05am…and to add insult to injury these guys wanted to show up their sound system? I have a 4 month old who I can barely get to sleep, and now this!!! I checked the baby monitor, my baby started to move.
That was it. I was freaking tired of the disrespect. I pulled up my phone: 911…… I thought about it for a second! Dialing….I explained the situation to the responder. It was not life or death situation I said; but, this was ridiculous plus I did not think that these guys were from the building. Not because of the way they looked, but because I thought that if you lived in this community, you would have known that most people worked during the week to afford the freaking rent; therefore, throwing pool parties by the pool that closed at 11pm was not acceptable.
I heard a commotion outside. I checked the window again. I pulled up my phone and started recording, because eh, you never know. Some neighbors woke up and got out on their balconies to comfort these guys. Of course, these guys got louder and profanities were exchanged. One of the guys by the pool screamed “I live here! I pay my rent just like you! I pay my taxes!” One of his friends shouted “We’ll find out where you live, we are coming for you!”). I did a slow clap. I smirked a little because I knew the police was on their way and I could not wait to see if they would have brought that same energy when the police showed up.
I got a call back from 911. They were downstairs and they needed someone to go open the door. My husband said he’ll go open the gates for them. And I thought twice…Hmmmm big black dude meeting with the police in front of an apartment building where multiple acts of vandalism were committed recently…Hmmm…Plus many people from the building must have called 911. What if someone reported that they saw a big black man looking suspicious as part of the group. Man! I did not want my husband to turn over a hashtag….
So I repeated several times “my husband is coming downstairs through the main door to open up for you guys. He was on his way” – Don’t shoot him! – I did not say that of course, but I really wanted to say it just in case…Isn’t that a terrible way to live in this Amerikkka? Urgh…but Ben was gone already so I waited. I kept looking at the group of idiots by the pool for what felt like the longest time. Finally, the cops showed up and Ben came back. It took exactly 20secs for the guys to leave peacefully.
Of course, by that time our baby was up so we had to feed him and get him back to sleep. It was 4am and my baby fell back asleep. My husband fell back asleep. However, I was not able to fall back asleep that night. The situation somehow left me shook and I was lost in all the ways the night could have ended much worse. I thought of the families of those men and women and children, who never came back…Freddie Gray, Sam Dubose, Philando Castile, Terence Crutcher, Alton Sterling, Jamar Clark, Jeremy McDole, William Chapman II, Walter Scott, Eric Harris, Tamir Rice, Akai Gurley, Michael Brown, Michael Brown, the list goes on…