Professor pBob White newut up his hand and said, “Did you know that Bob White does not write the article for Community Contact. What he does is go around to different barbershops and listens to people talk. He doesn’t ask any questions, he just listens then he sends his notes to the staff at Community Contact and they type….”
Now That’s Been Said, said, “Give me an example.”
Professor said, “Sure.
Everybody in the barbershops would like when they’re riding the metro to hear “Next stop Oscar Peterson,” or when they approach the Bell Centre hear “Next stop Stanley Cup, instead of Lucien Allier.”
These are examples of what people are talking about in the barbershops.
Professor said, “If you talk with boxing champion Otis Grant or trainer Howard Grant, they would tell you that the punch that knocks you out is the punch that you don’t see coming.”
“You have to learn the 5 Ps Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance and learn it early. Anyone can start in a marathon, but can you finish? Or how did you finish?”
Oletymer said, “Kenny Bernier who used to work at the airport would have been 89 years old on June 1, 2015. He used to tell stories about BB King.”
The Union United Church gets lots and lots of publicity, good; but the publicity should go across North America. Why? To generate funding to maintain the building, pay rent to the owner of the property because “they”, the “brothers” and “sisters” do not know the property and will never own it.
Professor said, “As we saw with Ferguson where some of the towns in St. Louis receive 40 percent or more of the city revenues from traffic tickets, tickets are money makers for towns.”
Money said, “The Union United Church like any other church is just another business done properly, fundraising, 5 people should be on staff. Union united Church is still a secret across North America. Why? Because of the people who run it. This is obvious. Stop being a secret; just install the right people to run it and raise its profile, and most importantly raise money because the church is history. That’s how it’s done. Some preachers/churches in the USA have 2 million followers.”
There was an “Amen” from the Regulars of the Ways and Means Committee.
PoBoy said, “I hear a lot of people say that they are Christians. Christ… Christians; if they are, do they live the life that a Christian lives, if so, everybody should know.”
There was an “Amen” in the barbershop.
Dropout put up his hand and said, “Listen to me carefully, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “I’d like somebody to mention that Martin Luther King Jr. gave his life by serving others. I’d like somebody to say Martin Luther King Jr. tried to love somebody. I want you to be able to say that I tried in my life to feed the hungry, that I did try to clothe the naked, that I did try to visit those who were in prison. And I want you to say that I tried to love and serve humanity.”
There was an “Amen” from the Regulars and everybody else in the barbershop.
It could be heard by Joe and Yvonne at St. Mary’s Hospital and all of the other places where the “brothers” and “sisters” are, and “brothers” and “sisters” are all over Montreal.
Professor said, “When Nelson Mandela visited Union United Church to Judge Juanita Westmoreland Traoré was inside the church, so was Marcus Durant.
The World’s greatest Jazz pianist donated a grand piano to the church, now that was a class move. Dr. Oliver Jones always had class.”
“When Nelson Mandela came to the Union United Church,” said Just Chillin, “It was so crowded the police would not let in former Prime Minister of Canada, Joe Clark, Tony Barksdale, and Bobby White explained to the police. Who Joe Clark was, only after that, did they allow the former Prime Minister of Canada into the Union United Church?
Oletymer said, “I wonder if those people understand the Good Shepherd Residence on St-Antoine Street. The late Helen Chandler used to be a good volunteer there.”
Dropout said, “I know the place, why are you bringing up the Good Shepherd Residence, it should be obvious, we do not own and operate such a Good Shepherd and it does not look like we will ever own one because we should have had it by now. I understand that beautiful church on St. Jacques and Vinet where Oscar Peterson and Oliver Jones was born and raised is sold and we know it was not bought by the members of the Union United Church or by a group to represent 185,000 Blacks in Montreal.”
“Let me tell you,” said Rufus the barber, “We all wish the Union United Church well, good luck, why? Because this all we have.”
There was an “Amen” from everyone.
This Day and Age put up his hand and said, “We all have a zone of choices, if I attended the church on Delisle Street, Montreal’s oldest Black institution 108 years old, I would expect to see in the front row on Sunday the Rt. Hon. Marlene Jennings, Judge Juanita Westmoreland Traoré, doctors, lawyers and Black royalty from Montreal.”
School Boy said, “I hope that in the new church they put up a plaque honoring the 12 children who drowned; they were day campers from the Negro Community Centre (NCC). They drowned because the boat they were in capsized, but the counsellors couldn’t swim.”
Just Chillin said, “What about the people that say ‘I don’t remember the incident, I was not here.’”
Every person in the barbershop put up their hand and said, “Tell them that you were not here when Jesus Christ was at the Last Supper, but you read about it. You were not around when the Bible was written, but you read it.”
There was an “Amen” in the barbershop.
Everybody agreed that Oliver Jones, the world’s greatest Jazz pianist, has lots of class and integrity. This is difficult to find nowadays.
The Genius said, “Listen to me closely, we all respect the process that the people at the Union United Church went through to get this far; it took them four years. We love them all. Again, this is all we have.”
Oletymer put up his hand and said, “That girl who resigned from the NAACP in Spokane Washington, was head of the Local Chapter; she’s a graduate of Howard University. They found out that she was white. She is in good company, because the late great W.E.B. DuBois resigned from the NAACP because of his more militant views of the need for strategic, voluntary, racial segregation to promote the interests of Blacks in America.”
Dropout said, “What’s your point?”
Oletymer said, “My point is obvious. Who cares what color she is, can she get Blacks freedom, justice and equality? If so, good. Look at all the Blacks in high places, even the President of the USA is a “brother,” he is trying his best. Like a piano keyboard, ask the world’s greatest Jazz piano player, he will tell you that you need “the white and black keys to make good music.”
There was an “Amen” in the barbershop.
Money said, “That girl who said that she was white, graduated from Howard University, is what Blacks need to help them in the struggle. I could imagine the stories that she heard from Black students about white folks, while attending Howard University.”
There was an “Amen” from everybody in the barbershop.
Just Chillin said, “Those low-life killers that escaped from that prison in upstate New York are White. Charles Manson is white. The Boston Strangler is white, Jeffery Dahmer was white. My question is, why do the media and the police want the public to believe that Blacks are more dangerous? The proof is there; just watch CNN.”
There was an “Amen” from everybody in the barbershop.
Professor put up his hand; he wanted everyone to be quiet, then he said, “Did you know that the student who won the National Award for sports and journalism is named Julian McKenzie. We did a little research on him; his father is Dave McKenzie, coordinator of MBA Community Services Initiative (MBACSI), John Molson School of Business at Concordia University. Now why is this important? It’s important because students come from all over the world to attend the John Molson School of Business, that’s why it’s important. Everybody should encourage this award-winning student.
There was an “Amen” from the Ways and Means Committee.
One of the Regulars of the Ways and Means Committee said that he met Harold Knight, an expert in textiles. Everybody agreed that Montreal needs more people like Harold Knight, experts.
There was an “Amen” from everybody for Harold Knight.
To tell you the truth said the buzz all week in the barbershop was the beautiful mural on the wall beside James Lyng High School. They are beautiful photos of Ethel Bruneau and Oliver Jones, history, the Black history of St. Henri/Little Burgundy. Maybe some day the person who announces the stops on the metro will say, “Next stop Oscar Peterson- Union United Church.”