Saturday, September 11, 2004

Northside Ethos

   I grew up on the Northside of Minneapolis, a general mix of working-class households of varying ethnic backgrounds.
As I went out into the world, one of the first things I learned was not to tell people where I was from. It could get a little testy if you did, there would always be a cutting remark or a slur, and then you had to either: shut up and take it, leave, or fight.
At a friend's bonfire last night, I was talking to his wife, who I knew only slightly. She had been talking about her background, and the struggles she had had growing up. At one point, I stopped her. "Northside, right?" I saw that northside ethos flash in her eyes, a chippyness that you had to have to survive. We understood each other perfectly in that moment.

   The Northside has changed, even a wilder mix of peoples and cultures, still some of the same problems, still good things happening in spite of them. If the Northside didn't break you, it made you stronger.

By Professor Batty



2 Comments:

Blogger BOKSTER said...

UNTIL I RETURNED HOME TODAY FROM MY YEARLY ATTOINMENT OF MY SINS I DIDN'T REALLY KNOW WHAT A BLOG WAS. THEN I WATCHED A SHOW OM CNN WHICH EXPLAINED EXACTLY WHAT THEY WERE. NEXT THIS MEDIAN GUY WITH AN ARTICLE IN TOMORROW'S NY Times SAID HE WAS LISTING SOME POWERFUL & IMPORTANT BLOG SITES IN HIS ARTICLE TOMORROW AND WE SHOULD ALL BE ON THE LOOK OUT FOR THEM. THIS WAS STARTING TO SOUND INTERESTING...JOURNALING INTO CYBERSPACE! AT SUNSET I WENT TO A BON FIRE PARTY- MARY & WILL ALWAYS HAVE INTERESTING FRIENDS. I BUTTED INTO THIS CONVERSATION ABOUT PHOTOGRAPHY, BECAUSE IT IS ONE OF MY PASSIONS. A GUY-I THINK NAMED STEVE STATED TELLING JACKSON TO TURN ON HIS BLOG SITE...THERE IT WAS..AMAZING. LIT BASED AS I REMEMBED. I TOLD JACKSON TO SEND HIS BLOG ADDRESS TO MY COMPUTER (I couldn't turn on a commputer until last January-Jackson is one of my mentors) I can't go to sleep until 2:00 AM on Saturday until the BBC news starts...) I SET UP MY OWN BLOG SPOT AND READ FLIPPISTARCHIVES. UNTIL I GOT TO THE GROWING UP ON THE NORTHSIDE I JUST KEPT READING ALONG...SORT OF LIKE READING ANOTHER PERSONS MAIL. BUT THE NORTHSIDE, THAT WAS MY LIFE, THAT WAS MY DOWNFALL. I WAS THE FASTEST RUNNER AT WILLARD. THAT WAS A GOOD THING BECAUSE BY THE TIME I GOT TO LINCOLN I HAD TO RUN FOR MY LIFE...THE FLIPPISTAR is RIGHT-IF YOU COULD SURVIVE THE NORTHSIDE YOU CAN SURVIVE ANYWHERE, ANYTIME...IT DIDN'T BREAK ME, I'M TOUGH AS NAILS!


Blogger Professor Batty said...

Wow! Instant Blogger! It took me weeks to work up enough nerve to do this. I was fun last night, I met quite a few interesting people...I had no idea you were a Northsider! (But now that I look back on it, it fits.)

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