{Big Black Daddy} Sucka For Love

By Derrick Barnes

It starts early. Well, at least for the eldest Barnes brother, Ezra, aka Pretty Boy McCoy, or aka his new and most fitting moniker, Soft Serve, it has started early as hell. He's a romantic. A push over for love. An easy target for feminine wiles.  He'll be the one with his nostrils agape and his ears sewn shut, especially to anything his old man will try to tell him to protect his innocent yet fragile heart. I can see it already.

Him sitting out on the front porch, tears Usain Bolt-ing down his cheeks, nose caked with snottage, and holding a soggy black and white photo of the little vixen that strung him along and then hung him out to dry like your granny's thick (but sexy) orthopedic stockings. Poor boy. He won't listen to me. I know he won't once he starts smelling himself, which will be happening (insert image of me looking at my wrist watch here) sooner than I'm ready for.

How do I know that he'll be a pushover for pretty faces? This is how it all began: Last year, in the third grade, my man E fell head over heels with a new girl in class (to keep me from putting somebody else's baby on blast, let's just call the little princess Kay-Kay. Cool? Cool). I had an opportunity to meet her on a school field trip and I must say, E definitely has taste. And I'm not just saying that because she was a little cutie, but because she was polite, and sweet and brilliant. If there is one thing I can feel good about in regards to E's choice in ladies is his propensity to like them brainy. Kay-Kay was and is the smartest girl in E's class. In the second grade there was another cute little academic all-star E was nuts about, but because I’ve already said too much, I won't divulge that young lady's identity, either (not gonna do you like that E; brothas have to look out for each other).

Okay, back to Kay-Kay. So E's class went on a field trip to an arcade -type place early this school year to reward the top students and he took $25 with him. Do you know that this cat came back with only lint, skee-ball tickets, and a pair of plastic x-ray vision glasses in his pockets? Come to find out, he spent a third of his dough on games, but he also made sure that Kay-Kay didn't run low on tokens, and he also bought her nachos. Nachos? That's huge, man! In the fourth grade? Buying a girl nachos with peppers? Big move. I just figured that was E just being nice, because he is the nicest guy I've ever had the pleasure of knowing. But no, it was deeper than that.

I was able to pick up an advance copy of the fifth Diary of a Wimpy Kid book for this guy plus a huge poster. He took it to school the next day, and I never saw it again. Although he read the book within a matter of minutes, he's the type of kid that will reread his favorite books over and over again. When I went to pick the Barnes Brothers up from school, my middle son, Solo says, Dad, ask Ezra where his new book is. G'head Turns out Ezra graciously allowed Ms. Kay-Kay to borrow his book for an indefinite amount of time. Eventually, he just ended up letting her have it. You have no idea how amazing these random acts of kindness and generosity are as it relates to E. He's a little miser. I'm talking about, he doesn't like anyone touching his stuff, nor does he ever, EVER, allow his brothers to take one of his books out of his room. To put it plain, Pretty Boy McCoy can be kind of selfish. So as his ol' man, to see him give up his precious items, plus money and nachos, just blew me away. I don't know what to do with him. Don't know what to tell him. All I know is, when a brotha gives of himself unselfishly, even at age ten, there is no turning back. The key is knowing who you can buy nachos for or which pretty face and set of big brown hypnotic eyes in particular will coax you into giving up copies of your favorite books. Before I was married I swore that I'd never be one of those cats that would work hard all week and give their whole check to some woman. But now, every single check that daddy brings home goes directly to mama because I know that she loves me and she'll do what needs to be done to take care of the house. That's what's up.

Ezra will be okay. Not too worried about my man; he's smart and I haven't caught wind of him buying out the whole cafeteria, giving all of the ladies extra jello for dessert. Not E. It's fun watching his decision-making skills get all scrambled by his emotions. I'll help him out here and there, or wherever he'll allow me to. Just as long as he doesn't go off and give away the vinyl collector's item copy of Miles' Kind of Blue I gave him when he was two. I'll definitely have to conduct a serious intervention with him. Seriously. Nachos with peppers are one thing, but coming up off of Kind of Blue? Giving up a bit of vintage Miles that your daddy gave to you? Nah, son. That kind of love and admiration is reserved for wifey, and I'm not too sure I'd do it then.

{The BBD joint of the month: Life by Royce Da 5'9, from the album, Rock City}

Derrick D’wayne Barnes is the author of eight children and young adult books, including the saucy MyBrownBaby favorite, the Ruby & The Booker Boys series. He’s given his insights about fatherhood on GreatDad.com, and is an incredible role model for brown babies everywhere. He lives in Kansas City, MO, with his wife and their three sons. Read more about him on DerrickBarnes.com.

Flickr credit: Frerieke

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Denene Millner

Mom. NY Times bestselling author. Pop culture ninja. Unapologetic lover of shoes, bacon and babies. Nice with the verbs. Founder of the top black parenting website, MyBrownBaby.

One Comment

  1. Great writing, and that is adorable, leading with his heart, I hope he can stay that way. BTW, KC STAND UP! (Well I’m from the Kansas side, but had to give the home-metro a shout out! 🙂

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