It’s 7:30 in the morning, or fifteen minutes after I’ve left the house, the absolute nadir of my morning commute. I’m stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic along the residential thoroughfare, my jaw flexing and hands squeezing the steering wheel, as there are too many parents endeavoring to drop their young children off at the neighborhood school. And all of this takes place before I merge onto interstate seventy, where the probability of another traffic jam is more than fifty percent. But at least there is constant forward momentum along the interstate, even if it is gradual and maddening. …


Last week, I sat down for lunch at the Denver Biscuit Company— my favorite restaurant — with a long-time friend. Customer traffic had died down by this time, providing us the opportunity to find a table situated by a window, settle in, and talk to each other without feeling encumbered by the presence of a dense crowd. As we waited patiently for the waitress to deliver our biscuit dishes, I brought up the topic of television, as I’d recently come across a new television show, one so exceptional that I’ve come to regard it as a bucket list item for…


Television has become more of a consistent companion during the last fifteen months, one of the main vehicles I use to manage my emotional health in a world ravaged by Covid-19. I plan my evenings and weekends around my shows, partitioning hours of streaming after eating dinner during each day. Most of the shows I stream contain a sufficient amount of violence and dark themes, leaving me unable to watch them in the presence of my mother — some of the imagery is very upsetting to her. So I usually end up streaming these shows on my laptop computer, ear…


Photo by Matt Popovich on Unsplash

I’m a liberal progressive, an espouser and advocate for reforms that engender a more equitable and inclusive society, one that provides for the needs of traditionally marginalized groups of Americans. I support a fifteen dollar per hour minimum wage and I want millionaires and billionaires to pay their fair share of taxes. I am in favor of stringent gun control measures, LGBTQ civil rights, expanded family leave, Black Lives Matter, Medicare for All, robust immigration, and a strong safety net. I think traditional conservatism creates a breeding ground for avarice, exclusion, stasis, and abject humiliation. …


Photo by Wilmer Martinez on Unsplash

2001

The hostel was situated in upper Manhattan, on the west side. I tiptoed through the premises for three weeks, careful not brush any part of my body against certain surfaces, as they were infested with dirt and grime, the communal toilets and showers being the worst offenders. And the hostel was rife with skulking individuals, brazen thieves searching for every available opportunity to abscond with your possessions. Never once did I feel safe while staying there, as I became desperate to escape the place. …


The Falcon and the Winter Soldier

Denver, 1992

Mile High Comics was located on the south side of a now defunct shopping center, next to the movie theatre that was tucked inside a recess in the wall, and across the way from the music store. I called it the Escape the Real World area, where I spent my Saturday afternoons, always alone but never really lonely.

I’d step into the comic book store first, say “hello” to the affable clerk as I walked by him, and peruse the titles. I knew exactly what I wanted as I searched through the store; action packed comic books with…


If you are an avid consumer of politics, it is impossible to avoid comparing Joe Biden and Donald Trump, two septuagenarian white men with complicated histories on race relations. Both men competed for the office of president, requiring that they make a genuine appeal to black Americans for votes and support.

“What have you got to lose?” said Trump, his white Make America Great hat casting a shadow over his bulbous eyes. He was speaking before a crowd of Michigan supporters on August 19, 2016, less than three months before his eventual ascension to the presidency. As Trump performed that…


Republicans don’t like this image

Last month, Georgia Republican state representatives, still seething after absorbing the ignominious defeat of their preferred presidential and senate candidates, ushered sweeping voting “reforms” through the Georgia legislature. The omnibus reform bill — it contained ninety-eight pages — was signed by Brian Kemp, Georgia’s current Republican governor. Joining Mr. Kemp for the signing were half a dozen white men with masks, staring down at the bill as Kemp signed it into law.

Republican officials, citing the big lie of rigged elections proffered by Donald Trump, have hailed the bill as an important expansion of voter protections and voting rights. But…


Ray Fisher as Cyborg

Eleven years ago.

I was speeding down the 1–70 thoroughfare, hands squeezing and pulling at the steering wheel as I fled the school from which I’d just been fired. The anguish I felt. It was of the unbearable kind, had me bent over the steering wheel the whole way. After arriving at home, I rushed up the stairs and collapsed onto my queen sized bed.

Hands and legs splayed, I stared up at the ceiling as I contemplated my bleak future. I was still in possession of my teacher’s license, but the school year was already up and running, with…


Photo by Kawin Harasai on Unsplash

It should have been just another Saturday morning in November.

I’d drive to my local Grease Monkey Station, check my car in with the technician, and then hand over my cars keys. I’d step into the waiting room and sit in one of the socially distanced chairs, a novel draped over my lap as I devoured words on pages. I’d read and wait for a technician to enter the waiting room to call out the model of my car, announcing its preparedness for the road. But this wasn’t just another November Saturday.

It was November 7, 2021, four days after…

Eze Ihenetu

I am a teacher, essay writer, survivor, foodie, and politically obsessed progressive. ep2ihenetu@gmail.com

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