The into the shared shower for the

The outside walls of the Raspberries apartment building are completely made of bricks and not the kind you would find on a white person’s home. These bricks were dark and musty, none of the original color is left. Once a vibrant red now being a deep brown causes the town to cower behind their hats and scarfs whenever they pass by. A burden was placed on the tenants that live there to walk through its doors every morning and night, feeling the burn of embarrassment as they hear the people behind them sigh out of pity. This apartment building wasa reminder everyday of the racism the African American public faced. Cowering below the edgesof the building did nothing, each person in the community felt the weight of the leaning sign, the falling brick, the unhinged door, and the shattered windows. Althea The window Althea looked out of was the only one wholly intact, not even a single handprint. Althea considered it her duty to wipe down the window every morning and night, maybe she was trying to uphold a certain decency or maybe she was in the habit of doing that already. Altheas day begins at 4:00 a.m. when she hops out of bed and into the shared shower for the whole floor. This ritual was not made from habit but instead of survival, if she failed to wake up at four to get in the shower she would take no shower for the day. By five she found herself at the Smiths cooking the breakfast she couldn’t cook for her family.”Good morning, Mrs. Smith,” she musters up the softest voice she could.”Oh, hello Althea!” said Mary clearly startled by Altheas loud voice.”Breakfast is ready,” she says trying to soften her voice even more. There was no answer from Mrs. Smith, meaning it was Altheas cue to leave. That factwas discovered by accident, long story short Mrs. Smith didn’t enjoy Altheas’ hovering…Across the kitchen Althea could see Mr. Smith glaring at her, he seemed to have a certain dislike for the way she cooks her gravy. Nonetheless she cooks it the same way every time, maybe in thesort of way Rosa Parks said “no’ on the bus or maybe she didn’t have any other recipes. She finds her way into the hallway holding her breath heading into John David’s room. Like his father he had a certain distaste for her gravy. She took everything by stride, never wincing at his remarks or his sudden change in temper. The boy never was keen on being smart with his insults so most of them bounced off with no injury given. “Get up boy, time for school.” She received no answer, it usually takes up to five attempts and a shake of the bed frame for himto get up. Once John David, correctly named after his father who both share the same contempt for Monday morning shake-downs, is up Althea heads down to sweet little Lisa’s room.Lisa was an angel among the Smith family, the only one who truly appreciated Altheas effort to make a stand with her gravy. Lisa was already up smiling that bright smile of hers. She’s going togo far, Althea thought. Althea enjoyed Lisa’s company and always remembered to leave a note of gratitude in the lunch she packs for her. “Good morning Miss Lisa,” she says loudly.”Oh, hello Althea!” said Lisa clearly startled at Altheas friendly voice.”Breakfast is ready, I made the gravy just how you like it,” she winked”Perfect!” The smile on the girl’s face transformed into mischief, Althea knows what that smile meant. Times are changing, her gravy will stay the same, and the people around them will have to learn to love it.John Smith The fork John Smith used to eat his biscuits and gravy was given to him from his mother. He hated this fork and always made a point to eat his biscuits and gravy with it because he hated them too. The maid, what’s-her-name, didn’t try hard when making his breakfast, he noticed. “Hey maid, um Allie?” he called loudly “Yes sir, and the names Althea,” “Yeah whatever, what happened to that new gravy recipe I toldyou to try?””I threw it out, I ain’t changing my gravy.” He let the argument go when he heard the footsteps of Lisa coming through thedoor. He wasn’t close with his daughter, mostly on the part of how she liked Allies gravy. He waved her over and forced a forkful of gravy into her mouth. Half-expecting a look ofdisgust, Lisa eyed Althea and let out a sound of enjoyment, John was rather disappointed. As of late John has attempted to being nicer to Allie or Althea, whichever name he wished to call her that day. Maybe it’s because his wife told him to or maybe its out of the kindness of his heart. The first step to being kinder is remembering Altheas name but he has made no effort in doing that. John works as a manager for a small drink company, The Cocoa-Cola Company. He only works there because his mother got him the job and hasn’t had the drive to leave. His mother is part of the reason he harbors so much angst against gravy, helikes his gravy white, but Althea makes it brown the way his mother did. In what world does brown gravy go with biscuits, white is better, he thinks. This of course has nothing to do with Althea and her intelligence he just links her worth to her brown gravy. The drive to work goes through a black neighborhood, with brick buildings covered in musty brown build-up. He feels a ting of sadness for the people wholive here. John remembers a day in his childhood when his father took him to these neighborhoods to feed the many African Americans sitting underneath the red bricked buildings. The look of the homes causes an unfamiliar ache in his heart, one he hasn’t feltsince his father died. Outside of the window he looks up to see an apartment building, worthy of embarrassment from the town, with a single window shimmering in the sun. Hmmm, he thinks, that window sure is pretty. The person who rents that room, he thinks again, must be proud. With that thought in mind he pulls his car over beside the damaged building and hops out. Inside the lopsided building he walks up the lopsided stairs to the room with the pretty window. Its at this point he hesitates, reaching back and forth between the doorknob and his shirt tail. He is not usually an indecisive man but now all logic has wentout the window. The anticipation of what was inside finally pushes him to twist the doorknob. With a few twists he discovers it is locked. A quite disappointing moment to say the least. Johns hand begins to shake as he pulls out his checkbook. What am I doing, he thinks? His hand writes $100, that was not his handwriting. “What am I doing?” he says this aloud this time. The ghost hand attached to his body shoves the check underneath the door. Ghost feet drag his depressed body to his car. The black family that live in that house will be surprised to know that this man does not like brown gravy.Grandma Bernadette The sudden twist at the door causes Grandma Bernadette to wake from her sleep. Her instinct was to grab the gun lying underneath the bed but decided against it. Slowly she creeps her big body to the door watching the doorknob shake and shake, she could hear a slow whimper of nerves as she sees a piece of paper being slipped underneath the door. She jumps back with a big thud carrying her full weight of 300 pounds to the floor. As soon as she picks herself up she throws the door open and catches a glimpse of a ghost white man running down the stairs. A prank, she thinks. The check glistens in her hands, the curve of the numbers 1-0-0 causes her to smile. One hundred dollars in her sweaty rattled palms, she’s never had so much money at once. The check will bounce, she thinks. This thought drives her to toss the money ontothe table. The clock strikes eight in the morning as Grandma plops her oversized body back into bed. She wouldn’t be awake until five p.m. just before her night shift starts at the hospital down the road. As the clock struck five Grandma was up and shuffling to the bathroom, the wind from her body blew the check onto the ground, Grandma Bernadette hobbled right passed it. The sad look on the numbers face created quite a damper on the night. The doorclashed open as little Asia and Harrison ran through. Both stepping on the check as they sped by. The check at this point has been left on the floor, representing the defeated look on Mr. Smiths face when he gets home. Grandma B. walks into work with dried drool still caked in the corner of her lip. The boss man cringes as she limps into the locker rooms, she is not the most pleasant looking woman. Years of discrimination, hard work, and poverty can do that to a lady. The cross necklace she dons bounces up and down as she slams the door behind her, out of anger and confusion she remembers the check. That check appeared in her dream too, she remembers. The check was floating, no there was a string attached to it. In her dream she followed the string down to a man, a white man, taunting her. Anger welled inside of her as she rips the check apart. The anger she felt for the man she doesn’t know has not been felt since her father died. Why would somebody prank her family, did they not see the outside of their building, the way the brown color makes the sun frown? Anger and pity fired her up,her feet walked her big body out of the hospital. These feet are not mine, she thinks. Whatam I doing, she thinks again? Her ghost feet attached to her body move her towards the city. This big woman shuffling down the dark neighborhood was quite a sight. The dark color of her skin had sunken into a pale yellow. This was not the way home, this was not the way to work, and this most certainly was not the way to church. Her feet was dragging her swollen ankles to a nice neighborhood, one where the bricks shine with pride and the windows aren’t shattered. She felt her cheeks burn with embarrassment, this neighborhood was nice, and her holey shoes were walking on their sidewalk. How dare she, this neighborhood didn’t deserve an overweight woman scuffing up their image, she thinks. This place was new to her though her feet walked her over to a house she doesn’t recognize. It was the nicest house on the street she noticed as her hand rose to knock on the door. It’s at this point she hesitates, reaching back and forthbetween the doorknob and her shirt tail. She is not usually an indecisive woman but now all logic went out the window. The anticipation of what was inside finally pushes her to pound on the door. Her daughter opens the door with wide eyes as she pushes her mother out of sight from John Smith and his family. “What are you doing here?” Althea asks quickly.”I…I…I don’t know, there was a check and…””Shush now and go home!” Bernadette ignores her daughter’s pleas and pushes past her with her two ghost feet leading the way. The look of bewilderment on the families faces snapped Bernadette into position. She was screaming now, words unrepeatable. Bringing up the words prank and money, she notices the burning of John Smiths face. It was him, she thinks. Her chubby cheeks turn toward him as she raises her finger in vengeance.”No!” John Smith screamsThere was a pause as Grandma Bernadette pushes out a breath from underneath her anger. “No, what do you mean no?” she asks”The money, its real.”Anger turned into embarrassment as Bernadette felt a ting of pity for the man. The man was sitting there with a half-eaten chicken leg in his hand with brown gravy over his biscuits.”Brown gravy?” she asks”Yes,” he smiles, “just the way I like it””Hm different, I like that,” Grandma Bernadette walked out of the house and found herself feeling happy. Though confused on how to get home but completely happy. Before she knew it her feet were walking her back home to a shimmering brown building with one pretty windos that live there to walk through its doors every morning and night, feeling the burn of embarrassment as they hear the people behind them sigh out of pity. This apartment building wasa reminder everyday of the racism the African American public faced. Cowering below the edgesof the building did nothing, each person in the community felt the weight of the leaning sign, the falling brick, the unhinged door, and the shattered windows. Althea The window Althea looked out of was the only one wholly intact, not even a single handprint. Althea considered it her duty to wipe down the window every morning and night, maybe she was trying to uphold a certain decency or maybe she was in the habit of doing that already. Altheas day begins at 4:00 a.m. when she hops out of bed and into the shared shower for the whole floor. This ritual was not made from habit but instead of survival, if she failed to wake up at four to get in the shower she would take no shower for the day. By five she found herself at the Smiths cooking the breakfast she couldn’t cook for her family.”Good morning, Mrs. Smith,” she musters up the softest voice she could.”Oh, hello Althea!” said Mary clearly startled by Altheas loud voice.”Breakfast is ready,” she says trying to soften her voice even more. There was no answer from Mrs. Smith, meaning it was Altheas cue to leave. That factwas discovered by accident, long story short Mrs. Smith didn’t enjoy Altheas’ hovering…Across the kitchen Althea could see Mr. Smith glaring at her, he seemed to have a certain dislike for the way she cooks her gravy. Nonetheless she cooks it the same way every time, maybe in thesort of way Rosa Parks said “no’ on the bus or maybe she didn’t have any other recipes. She finds her way into the hallway holding her breath heading into John David’s room. Like his father he had a certain distaste for her gravy. She took everything by stride, never wincing at his remarks or his sudden change in temper. The boy never was keen on being smart with his insults so most of them bounced off with no injury given. “Get up boy, time for school.” She received no answer, it usually takes up to five attempts and a shake of the bed frame for himto get up. Once John David, correctly named after his father who both share the same contempt for Monday morning shake-downs, is up Althea heads down to sweet little Lisa’s room.Lisa was an angel among the Smith family, the only one who truly appreciated Altheas effort to make a stand with her gravy. Lisa was already up smiling that bright smile of hers. She’s going togo far, Althea thought. Althea enjoyed Lisa’s company and always remembered to leave a note of gratitude in the lunch she packs for her. “Good morning Miss Lisa,” she says loudly.”Oh, hello Althea!” said Lisa clearly startled at Altheas friendly voice.”Breakfast is ready, I made the gravy just how you like it,” she winked”Perfect!” The smile on the girl’s face transformed into mischief, Althea knows what that smile meant. Times are changing, her gravy will stay the same, and the people around them will have to learn to love it.John Smith The fork John Smith used to eat his biscuits and gravy was given to him from his mother. He hated this fork and always made a point to eat his biscuits and gravy with it because he hated them too. The maid, what’s-her-name, didn’t try hard when making his breakfast, he noticed. “Hey maid, um Allie?” he called loudly “Yes sir, and the names Althea,” “Yeah whatever, what happened to that new gravy recipe I toldyou to try?””I threw it out, I ain’t changing my gravy.” He let the argument go when he heard the footsteps of Lisa coming through thedoor. He wasn’t close with his daughter, mostly on the part of how she liked Allies gravy. He waved her over and forced a forkful of gravy into her mouth. Half-expecting a look ofdisgust, Lisa eyed Althea and let out a sound of enjoyment, John was rather disappointed. As of late John has attempted to being nicer to Allie or Althea, whichever name he wished to call her that day. Maybe it’s because his wife told him to or maybe its out of the kindness of his heart. The first step to being kinder is remembering Altheas name but he has made no effort in doing that. John works as a manager for a small drink company, The Cocoa-Cola Company. He only works there because his mother got him the job and hasn’t had the drive to leave. His mother is part of the reason he harbors so much angst against gravy, helikes his gravy white, but Althea makes it brown the way his mother did. In what world does brown gravy go with biscuits, white is better, he thinks. This of course has nothing to do with Althea and her intelligence he just links her worth to her brown gravy. The drive to work goes through a black neighborhood, with brick buildings covered in musty brown build-up. He feels a ting of sadness for the people wholive here. John remembers a day in his childhood when his father took him to these neighborhoods to feed the many African Americans sitting underneath the red bricked buildings. The look of the homes causes an unfamiliar ache in his heart, one he hasn’t feltsince his father died. Outside of the window he looks up to see an apartment building, worthy of embarrassment from the town, with a single window shimmering in the sun. Hmmm, he thinks, that window sure is pretty. The person who rents that room, he thinks again, must be proud. With that thought in mind he pulls his car over beside the damaged building and hops out. Inside the lopsided building he walks up the lopsided stairs to the room with the pretty window. Its at this point he hesitates, reaching back and forth between the doorknob and his shirt tail. He is not usually an indecisive man but now all logic has wentout the window. The anticipation of what was inside finally pushes him to twist the doorknob. With a few twists he discovers it is locked. A quite disappointing moment to say the least. Johns hand begins to shake as he pulls out his checkbook. What am I doing, he thinks? His hand writes $100, that was not his handwriting. “What am I doing?” he says this aloud this time. The ghost hand attached to his body shoves the check underneath the door. Ghost feet drag his depressed body to his car. The black family that live in that house will be surprised to know that this man does not like brown gravy.Grandma Bernadette The sudden twist at the door causes Grandma Bernadette to wake from her sleep. Her instinct was to grab the gun lying underneath the bed but decided against it. Slowly she creeps her big body to the door watching the doorknob shake and shake, she could hear a slow whimper of nerves as she sees a piece of paper being slipped underneath the door. She jumps back with a big thud carrying her full weight of 300 pounds to the floor. As soon as she picks herself up she throws the door open and catches a glimpse of a ghost white man running down the stairs. A prank, she thinks. The check glistens in her hands, the curve of the numbers 1-0-0 causes her to smile. One hundred dollars in her sweaty rattled palms, she’s never had so much money at once. The check will bounce, she thinks. This thought drives her to toss the money ontothe table. The clock strikes eight in the morning as Grandma plops her oversized body back into bed. She wouldn’t be awake until five p.m. just before her night shift starts at the hospital down the road. As the clock struck five Grandma was up and shuffling to the bathroom, the wind from her body blew the check onto the ground, Grandma Bernadette hobbled right passed it. The sad look on the numbers face created quite a damper on the night. The doorclashed open as little Asia and Harrison ran through. Both stepping on the check as they sped by. The check at this point has been left on the floor, representing the defeated look on Mr. Smiths face when he gets home. Grandma B. walks into work with dried drool still caked in the corner of her lip. The boss man cringes as she limps into the locker rooms, she is not the most pleasant looking woman. Years of discrimination, hard work, and poverty can do that to a lady. The cross necklace she dons bounces up and down as she slams the door behind her, out of anger and confusion she remembers the check. That check appeared in her dream too, she remembers. The check was floating, no there was a string attached to it. In her dream she followed the string down to a man, a white man, taunting her. Anger welled inside of her as she rips the check apart. The anger she felt for the man she doesn’t know has not been felt since her father died. Why would somebody prank her family, did they not see the outside of their building, the way the brown color makes the sun frown? Anger and pity fired her up,her feet walked her big body out of the hospital. These feet are not mine, she thinks. Whatam I doing, she thinks again? Her ghost feet attached to her body move her towards the city. This big woman shuffling down the dark neighborhood was quite a sight. The dark color of her skin had sunken into a pale yellow. This was not the way home, this was not the way to work, and this most certainly was not the way to church. Her feet was dragging her swollen ankles to a nice neighborhood, one where the bricks shine with pride and the windows aren’t shattered. She felt her cheeks burn with embarrassment, this neighborhood was nice, and her holey shoes were walking on their sidewalk. How dare she, this neighborhood didn’t deserve an overweight woman scuffing up their image, she thinks. This place was new to her though her feet walked her over to a house she doesn’t recognize. It was the nicest house on the street she noticed as her hand rose to knock on the door. It’s at this point she hesitates, reaching back and forthbetween the doorknob and her shirt tail. She is not usually an indecisive woman but now all logic went out the window. The anticipation of what was inside finally pushes her to pound on the door. Her daughter opens the door with wide eyes as she pushes her mother out of sight from John Smith and his family. “What are you doing here?” Althea asks quickly.”I…I…I don’t know, there was a check and…””Shush now and go home!” Bernadette ignores her daughter’s pleas and pushes past her with her two ghost feet leading the way. The look of bewilderment on the families faces snapped Bernadette into position. She was screaming now, words unrepeatable. Bringing up the words prank and money, she notices the burning of John Smiths face. It was him, she thinks. Her chubby cheeks turn toward him as she raises her finger in vengeance.”No!” John Smith screamsThere was a pause as Grandma Bernadette pushes out a breath from underneath her anger. “No, what do you mean no?” she asks”The money, its real.”Anger turned into embarrassment as Bernadette felt a ting of pity for the man. The man was sitting there with a half-eaten chicken leg in his hand with brown gravy over his biscuits.”Brown gravy?” she asks”Yes,” he smiles, “just the way I like it””Hm different, I like that,” Grandma Bernadette walked out of the house and found herself feeling happy. Though confused on how to get home but completely happy. Before she knew it her feet were walking her back home to a shimmering brown building with one pretty windo

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