Version 2.0

Culture, healing, politics and bullshit - Not necessarily in that order

The general, socio-political and very personal rantings and ravings of a hip hop head from the hood hustling for change... Of himself.

You all know me and are aware that I am unable to remain silent. At times to be silent is to lie. For silence can be interpreted as acquiescence.
—Miguel de Unamuno


Monday, September 10, 2007

What's My name?

I fell in love a long time ago.

I knew that I would make a jump into things sooner or later, all I needed to do was to hold onto myself and finally admit that I was ready.

I still had to be told though, and that's not a bad thing.

I gave thought about naming kids and the difficulty something like having my name has these days... And then I remembered that my grandmother named me 'Hansel'.

Like Hansel and Gretel.

A little black boy named after an eastern European character out of folklore.


My kids shouldn't have a problem with the family name... Except for them kids wanting to be Gotti and Gambino. Why a kid never wanted to be Amin or Mustafa still puzzles me. I never heard a little boy back in the day admit to wanting to be Chaka Zulu.

And that African was dope.

I digress... It came time for me to realize how much I needed to bridge the gap. Knowing that I'm going into my 40's in this reality just didn't feel real. I wrestled with the thought of going it alone as I always have and then I remembered the piece I wrote a minute ago in tribute to a woman in purple that totally blitzed my senses and made me think of redefinition because of how she triumphed over adversity and made her life a thing of quality... And how I fell in love with that:

We move within silence not knowing if that motion is directed towards completion.

To me silence replaces distance, so I make noise as to keep unspoken feelings audible.

If I can hear, then I know that you're close.

It comforts me knowing that your emotions are within arms reach.

I hope that actions mean completion of us.

I pray that distance only means that we'll be together in the meantime and that we can grow out of individual space.

In time.

The clicking that interrupts white noise is me eagerly responding to you.

At times I'm afraid to pick up the phone, during others I become a coward, withdraw and anticipate you typing.

I get short of breath.

Silence broken ushers curious gladness. Reconnected via wrists and fingertips helps smooth quiet loneliness out. It replaces conversation, but only in a season. I write in silence only to break it with a yearning thought.

I read aloud to exercise the power of the written word into spoken.

Words have the power of life and death.

I view pictures with hopes of recall enhancing our face to face. Every now and then I check my pocket to make sure I have enough to bring that thing together.

I can't swallow.

That thought so tense. That thing is time. Things happen in due time. Timing is everything, it's special that I might want to dedicate said time for a long time.

We move within silence not knowing if that motion is directed towards completion, but we want it to.

We want it to, right?
MOTION, TIME - 2006 Hassan Olumoroti Ntimbanjayo, ya dig?

I remember when I wrote that and when I sent it via email. It was the first time I didn't go and grab stationary and do the ditty by hand. The thought and intent was the same and I felt good in hitting the enter/return key.

I knew it was to be, I just had to give into the feeling and feel comfortable in being me. Could i still be me and live this way? After a few sleepless nights and thoughts of going without I knew that this is the way it has to be, and I like the answers the Creator gave me on making such a move.

Once long ago he took it away, and now in this new opportunity I get it back. With interest.

I get to have my name, the one I chose and I get to live with it until I become someone else. It may take a handful of decades to want to part with what is rightfully mine.

My name is Hassan Olumoroti Ntimbanjayo and I am the rightful owner of my very own name. After years of deliberation and the IRS hovering over me and the government wondering why I want my name to sound like the newest threat to America, I have what I gravitated to which is the name I chose.

I just got married y'all. Married to change and progress. Forever connected to the concept that I am who I say I am the the idea of freedom of choice. And now I legally assume my family name and am able to wear it proudly among my people.

And chuckle at how they try to pronounce it.

Go ahead... Say my name.


Anonymous said...

Congratulations! I know what a big deal this is for you and how important your name is to you. I'm happy to hear that it's officially YOURS.

Aly Cat 121 said...

I can say HASSAN. "HASSAN, HASSAN, HASSAN" *chuckle* Okay, so for real, win is the wedding?

Ain't nothing wrong with having an Afrikhan name cuz on the real, Africa is dope!!! And when a mo'fo ask you what it mean, got back to Kemet on they azz and drop some sh*t on them.

Rose said...

I can say your first name but the rest is a mouthful.

Jazzy said...

From the "european character of folklore" to the handsome one who takes great strides...what a transition! Congrats!

I happen to be in love with my name (the wise flower) too...though I didn't have any part of selecting it.

deepnthought said...


Awesome post as usual.

I happen to like my name too. Even though I am named after a warrior I think it fits me. I have to admit to the strength that my name implies.

Gallis said...

I have no idea what to say.

aquababie said...


Lola Gets said...

Congrats on saying yes to your chi!

The Addict said...

Like that you stayed true to you and that which has meaning. Love the blog...check me out sometime. Hope to hear from you...peace.

Anonymous said...

My first time here. Your name sounds great. I like that fact that you say you are the rightful owner of your very own name. I wish I knew the liberation of choosing my own.

princessdominique said...

All I'm going to do is smile.

Luke Cage said...

Now that's how you put your thing down man. Strong and hard. No messing around and doing it the way YOU wanted to have it done. Good for you my brotha. I still suffer from a speech impediment and your name looks too good for me to try to say it and mess it all up. So for now, all Hail: Brotha Hassan!

Anonymous said...

I am glad you finally made the change. I am happy for you.

The Pursuit Of Happiness said...

I really like this piece, it made me breathe in a little deeper in thought and also revived the spoken word in me. I think I might have to post some of my pieces on my blog, this is all new but I enjoy the freedom of being able to verse what I want to say, be it personal or Non. Thanks for motivating me!