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Before the internet flooded us with mass produced individuality. Before the media said you either rich or you are poor. Before commercialism told us whose story is worth telling, whose voice was worth being heard. Before all this, there Ordinary People, living ordinary lives just trying to get by on a pittance, a little dignity and some laughter.

This is their story.



It is said that girls mature faster than boys, right? Blessed with an inherent dignity, strong but exposed, hard to touch but easy to feel, right? Is it? Or are we just hoping? Did we tell her that or are we hoping that she knows. Did we stop telling her or did she stop listening? Maybe it was round about the same time that we stopped hugging her that she discovered she had booty. That meant the unspoken love at home wasn’t  worth as much as the expressed lust in the street. How they smile at her. How they want to be with her. How they want to be her. That’s when she started listening to these little boys. ‘hey girl, they treat you like shit at home but you the shit outchea!’ They are stupid but they are right, no? They are dense but she is thick, no? They understand her, right? Mama said don’t play with boys but what does she know? She is thinking to herself that she is 16  and she is sweet and her pubes  have started to grow so must be grown and she must be ready, right?

After mom and dad fall asleep, she slips into that little black number, into the black of the night, looking for the light of the party. Everyone is there, she feels cool and digging the attention from the boys who are digging what they could be digging. She’s put out before and it wasn’t that bad so she is looking to put out again because she must be that good. That is, until her girl tells her that she needs to up her numbers in order to make it to the top. She’s not sure but she figures she’s pulled a 6-9 and she’s handled a 4-5, how hard could a 3-1 ratio be? It’s all numbers, beside everyone is doing it, right? A smile and a wink, some liquid courage and it’s off to the bedroom with Tom, Dick and Harry. She figured she had done a math. That is, until the numbers didn’t add up. 6 sweaty balls, 1 pierced condom and 2 ovaries 9 months due to bust because she didn’t know what is “cuming”.

She knew that her tight skirt and round ass would get her a ride in a 3 letter car to the party. Little did she know that to get back home she’d have to ride the fourth letter.

She wakes up in the morning, body sore, no words to mom but mom can see the limping. She retreats back to bedroom to find a message from her about “did you see…” She goes into a daze. Tom took pics. Dick took vids. Harry twitpic’d and sent her trending. Now she’s a meme about “Hoes be like…” and that’s Whataspp! She was born mature, right? She should have known better, right? She was born mature, blessed with dignity but self-esteem is an optional extra.

When mama told her that boys will hurt she thought mama meant a broken heart. But she didn’t need the advice because, at 16, she knew all about broken hearts,  right? She had penned it in her song book with the glitter pen, right? But deep down inside, what mama wanted to tell her daughter that the type of hurting that boys will put on them will not make it into Rihanna’s lyrics. Beyonce will not belt out a chorus about it. Drake will not apologize for it over a slow beat. It is not romantic. It is not beautiful. What mom is trying to tell her is that boys will not just break her heart, they will break her soul. They will split your spirit into two all the while having a vague idea of what your name is.

But she knows now. She’ll tell her daughter.


quick shoot at the car wash in the hood…


*I do not own the ‘image treatment’ illustration.