Upon completing the morning rituals, I make my way by the same route to the Green Garage. I generally get stopped by 3 or 4 people who like to comment on the bounce in my step, and the twinkle in my eye. They ask how I do it, I ask how they don’t. I continue on my way, and eventually run into the homeless man on Warren. We do our special handshake which consists of me passing him a folded $1 bill as he comments on the fact that I must have been an OG in a past lifetime. For those of you that don’t know OG stands for “Old Gangster”. After a momentous trek, that I liken to hiking the Inca Trail that leads to Machu Picchu because of its unconquerable highs and lows and extremes in beauty, I finally make my way into the Green Garage. Now this is probably the most misleading part of my day. The Green Garage is neither Green nor is it a Garage as the name would suggest. Instead it is a wonderland of about 50 companies all working in this space with some collaboration to create a better world around us. The obvious comparison is to Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, but instead I think it reminds me more of the rebel base on Hoth. These are fighters battling for a better world and place, one where the Galactic Empire has not yet strangled the common people. It is a beautiful fight, one that I am grateful to be a part of each and every day.
At this point, I begin some work on Small Batch, the company that me and my fearless compatriot Brianna have been working on. This part of my day, while it consists mostly of excel spreadsheets and research drags me into a jungle where every decision is life or death. The green of the excel icon mesmerizes me as I picture Brianna and I with our machetes trying desperately to chop ourselves through this dense undergrowth to find the golden city of the Incas in the middle of this jungle. No, it is not the golden city we are looking for, monetary wealth doesn’t even give us pause, I believe we are more like scientists attempting to find the cure for cancer in this overwhelming and pressing heat. Heat that sticks to you and clings to you and tries to draw you down whispering in your ear that sleep is what you really need. We know better, this isn’t just a fight for us, it is a fight for the greater good. We grab our canteens and splash water on our faces to stave off any weariness. There is no time to falter. Without warning we realize that our rations are running low, we have been hacking and chopping and pushing forward for hours without break or rest. Our bodies need nutrients. Luckily, some other brave entrepreneur decided to open up a burrito joint in the middle of this jungle! Pushing past anacondas and wadding through schools of piranha, we make it into the relative safety of Alley Taco. With a short 15-minute break to revitalize, we once again head back out into the jungle. Monday’s, however, are notoriously short in the jungles of yesteryear. We haven’t found the cure yet, but it will have to wait for another day.
With a low humming, the arrival of a plane is announced. Its Rhyn! Rhyn drops a line down from the plane and Brianna and I grab it and try and swing up into the plane. Of course, at this point we are running over the backs of a couple of crocodiles in order to make it, but the last croc rears up and attempts to bite my leg off! With a quick prayer to Vishnu for guidance and Ganesh the destroyer of obstacles, my body finds the strength to throw myself out of harms way and into the belly of the plane. The trials and tribulations of the jungle are left behind as we head to the newest adventure, one relatively tame for many, but even more difficult for me; cooking.
The church we arrive at is no Sagrada Família, but the work done in it can be counted as even more important. This is where for four hours, every Monday, my blood, sweat, and tears are used to create the next round of Mitten Bites. (Disclaimer: No blood, sweat, or tears are actually used in the creation of Mitten Bites). Strong of arm, and quick of mind, the task of scooping the Mitten Bites into their proper shape and form falls upon me. It is back-breaking work, yet the rewards are real. As I scoop and pull and push and pry and placate, inevitably the chocolate becomes warm and starts to liquefy. This is a dangerous position to be in. As the chocolate liquefies my fears become ever more real when SUDDENLY THE CHOCOLATE SPRAYS OUT AND HITS ME RIGHT IN THE FACE. Blinded by the warm chocolate spray that has begun to drip down my face I must find reprieve. Can I wipe the chocolate off? NO! I am in a commercial kitchen and there are certain rules and regulations that guide my every action and my every movement. Moving faster than the speed of sound I rip my gloves off and toss them in the trash before barreling my way to the sink to wash my hands. I then proceed with the delicacy of delivering a newborn baby to wipe the sweet chocolate sauce from my face. My co-workers are entranced, they have never seen something so beautiful and so stimulating as me wiping chocolate from my eyes. There is no time to spare though. I quickly rewash my hands, and grab a new pair of gloves from the box before dashing back to my work station. I check my nonexistent watch, .347 of a second. Drats, .003 seconds slower than the previous Monday. A slight hiccup in an otherwise productive day. I know what must be done. I call out to Brianna across the table, “Brianna, hit it!” The sweet soothing melodies of DMX start to pump out from the speakers. I close my eyes and return to the focus and determination that I harbored before. At this late hour it is harder to reach for but in my mind I am spanning galaxies and black holes, divides larger than life itself before I find what I am looking for, the familiar obsidian like determination that rests in the back of my head… Wait. What is that. Out of the corner of my mind’s eye I see it; distraction.
Her hair was the color of a late summer afternoon. It was if the sun had picked daffodils and sunflowers and woven them into a crown to place on her head. The brilliance of the flowers and sun mixed with the darker dappled light given from rays partially obscured by trees. It spoke of summer days when all cares can be left for the wind, and the body becomes cleansed by each pool of light. What it was, was warmth.
No the memories and distractions are getting stronger! My mind weary from the day is starting to fail me. The clock is approaching 7pm and my strength is failing me.
She walks with the sun in her hair and a smile that steals the hearts from anyone not quick enough to look away, a practiced smile and nothing more. The beauty is in what is held behind the smile. It is found in all the swirling doubts that run through her mind as she walks the path she has chosen. Everyone can appreciate the smile painted on the lips of a pretty girl, but the real beauty is in the reason for the smile. It can be found in her eyes.
I must resist against the intrusions of an ever-whirling mind. I have to find that black obsidian rock that will guide me through the rest of the day. I latch on, I think of the work I am doing. I think of the kids, the kids who are being helped by this program. One finger length at a time I scratch and pull and drag myself back into reality. I glance at my still nonexistent watch, it has been .009 seconds since my mind began wandering. Time that I have to make up. I look at Brianna in the eye and she knows what song to play. Half Naked and Almost Famous starts to thump and my concentration is restored. With renewed vigor I attack the unintelligible mass that is unmade Mitten Bites. With one final mighty scoop, I finish the bowl. Falling backwards I collapse on the floor exhausted. The next couple of minutes become a blur of cleaning and before I know it I am back on the plane. My eyes start to droop, but I have no fear, I trust in Rhyn’s abilities. Stumbling into the spacious Wayne State Manor’s rooms (read: small dorm room) I collapse on my bed and wait for the sweet release of sleep to cradle my weary body and mind and rock me to sleep, when suddenly my phone buzzes. Do I want to go on the Dancing Queen, Detroit’s premier riverboat? It looks like it’s on to the next adventure for Kiran Morgan “Laughs in the Face of Danger” “The Show” Llewellyn Jones.
Until next time, keep your inhibitions low, and your sense of adventure high.