My People

6/10/07 - My Father's Son
There Is A Heaven
Happy Birthday Daddy
6/10/07 - My Father's Son
Photos & The Like
Maternal Tree- Sadler

Willis Hunt Jr
Is An Old Friend
We were at the Women In Jazz Rushen-Carrington Quartet concert at the Paramount Theatre June 2 and during the intermission, long after host and singer Pamela Hart told the crowd that she was grateful for my companies generosities to the Women in Jazz, calling my name several times, my old friend Willis Hunt Jr. made a comment to me that put my personality into a more pointed perspective. 
Truth be told, I realized long ago that I may have a generosity problem for I will help people that I may not really like... whenever helping them won't effect whatever my goals may be. My attitude is that they need help and I can help them so, why not help them? I know THAT is strange, but it feeds into my value system and helps me sleep at night. 
Keep in mind that Willis Jr. (Jr.) and I were friends from the sand box on and both our dads were basically in the same type business, albeit Jr.s' dad did real estate for a living and my dad did it on the side.  Jr. left town for college else where when we graduated high school in 1971. I stuck around Austin to go to Huston-Tillotson, often stopping by his late father's office to "shoot the fat". 
Much like Theodore Youngblood, M.J. Anderson and George Knox, Jr.s' dad was like an uncle to me and I never felt like I was not welcome.


Back to the concert - After Pam made her comments, Jr. stated that it was no surprise that Pam had stated what she did BECAUSE, as he so eloquently put it, I am James Means' son.  I was awe-struck by his statement... but he was right!
My mind raced back to the times when my dad rented houses to people that never paid him like they could've and certaintly rarely as they should've. Sometimes I would go to collect the paltry sums that he was charging them and they would've bought beer instead of having his money. Even as a child I knew they were taking his kindness for weakness.  My dad often would give people enough rope to hang themselves but would still hold the chair to keep them from falling...
In retrospect from the experiences in being around my dad and the people he helped I learned a lot about the gentle kindnesses of my dad and because of that, in many ways, I am really my dad all over again.  I just wonder why my brother seems so much my opposite... Things that make you go hmmm.
Perhaps I've been foolish with some of my generosities and yet it deters me not an iota because I do not do whatever it is that I choose to do for anyone elses approval.  I guess I do the things that I do to impress myself. 
Frankly I was surprised that Pam recognized me specifically, if at all for  I was content with the print on the programs and her verbalizing the contributions of Austin Cab Company and Austin Private Car & Limousine.  I've done the same thing many times before for visiting heads of state and diplomats, sports franchises and many other causes that I support.  That's why people calling my name as a contributor instead of just my company is very rare.  So yes I was surprised... and yet grateful, especially after Willis Jr. put it all into a perspective that I could understand.
I am proud that I am my fathers' son after all.