I live in a great part of San Francisco. My neighborhood has great bars, fancy supermarkets, a park, the Full House House and so much more.
Up until about fifteen years ago, my neighborhood was known as the Western Addition. A thriving middle class black neighborhood with black owned businesses, neighbors who asked how your mom was doing and the legacy of being known as The Harlem of the West. But that was then.
Now the Western Addition has been renamed NOPA (North of The Panhandle Area) by over zealous realtors who wanted to make it more appealing to white home buyers. Millennials stumble out of their homes to shop at a high end market with locally sourced cheese made of Buffalo milk and pretension . A black person walking down the street has become a rare sight that makes smart phone wielding white girls clutch their purse and cross the street. After all it is their neighborhood now, what are those people doing here?
This neighborhood has always been part of my life. My grandparents bought an apartment building there when I was a child and I would often spend days there having sleep overs with my cousins. As an adult, I moved in to a two bedroom in the building. It is part of who I am.
As gentrification has begun infecting my hood, I have tried not to let the virus, known as the homogenization of Harlem West, kill me too. I took steps to have a positive attitude. I make myself smile as I walk past Louis bag sporting bitches, whining in their vocal fry accents about their Uber driver. I only lecture every fifth asshole that I encounter, cutting line or bumping into strollers and giving the mom a dirty look, about privilege and mindfulness.
In short, I was learning to accept the locusts that were slowly eating at the soul of my city, and resisting the urge to spray them with raid. All that changed when my SUDS (Start Up Douchebag) neighbors got not one, but two drones.
My apartment is on the top floor of a multi unit building on the top of a hill. My windows are higher than the surrounding apartments and I don't have any curtains in my bedroom, because I didn't need them. Notice I said didn't.
The other night I was laying in bed looking at the city. I love to look at the light of the helicopters and airplanes. I like to look at the constellations. I like to look out my window and imagine. I noticed two objects floating and hovering at the level of the apartment windows. They were flying over a two block radius, lingering at each building for a couple of seconds and then floating to the next spot. At first I couldn't make out what they were. All I could make out were the red and green lights. As they approached my window, I realized what they were; FUCKING DRONES!!!
I was furious and called the police, who apparently had gotten several complaints about them. They told me that sadly there wasn't much they could do unless they knew exactly who they were.
So now I realize that thanks to another group of self centered little techie shits, I have to alter my life, get curtains or stop doing certain things in the privacy of my own room, in my home. Here are some of those things:
1. I cannot pick my nose
Sorry to inform you that beautiful people get boogers too and sometimes we don't feel like getting up to get a tissue. But not anymore, now I gotta get out of bed, walk to the bathroom and use a tissue.
2. I cannot get dressed
I know it sounds like a simple thing. But when I get ready to go out, I like to try on everything, only to put on the first outfit I tried on. Ladies know what I mean. I like to parade around my room with two different types of shoes. Push up my boobs in the mirror as I pretend like I am the hottest bitch in the club and have imaginary conversations with the man I am sure to meet later on in the real world. It is my pre-going out ritual. An affirmation that boosts not only my tits, but my confidence.
3. I cannot adjust my shape-wear
Today's fashion can be unforgiving. It is as if the fabrics are the spawn of heat seeking missiles. That ruched , v neck cocktail dress can find a way to cling to love handles and announce them to any one who walks by. Muffin tops, back fat and fupa can transform that sexy LBD into a potato sack covering what the mind can see as Quasimodo like deformities. Shape-wear is the salvation that restores one's body to a semblance of womanhood. A cheat for those of us who can't resist that fried what ever it is. But shape-wear isn't easy to put on. It is almost as if the creator thought "yeah I made this for bitches who don't like to exercise but still want shove all of that into a little Lycra dress, but getting it on is going to be a work out". I have pulled muscles putting on shape-wear. Trust me, I don't want any one to see me contorting as I shove my belly fat into a modern day girdle, then laying on the floor feeling defeated as I try to catch my breath.
4. I cannot watch porn on my laptop
Yes women watch porn. Not the nasty donkey punch shit you mun sporting, jack asses like to watch, but we do like porn. But for a lot of women, it is done in secret. There are a series of steps taken to make sure that our dirty little secret stays that way. We make sure no one is home. We turn of our phone so that we are not interrupted. We make sure our door is locked and all the lights are off. We get a bottle of wine. Sometimes it is the second bottle. Actually, most of the time it is a second bottle that leads us to porn. We open our laptop, we go to our site (which will immediately be cleared from out history afterwards), and we watch. Which leads me to the next thing I can no longer do
5. I cannot masturbate
That's right!!! I masturbate!!! I am a grown ass woman who is in tune with her body and I know what makes me feel good!! Don't judge me!!! Even if I did it with the lights off, completely covered in blankets it wouldn't feel good if I knew some little creep's drone is hovering in my window trying to figure out what I am doing. They have got me so paranoid that I worry they can sense the buzzing of my toys. There is nothing pleasurable about movement free masturbation. That is just sleeping with your hand in your pants.