“Sheer Amazement”

“Sheer Amazement”
By: Jerome Fitts- April 2015

In wrapping up the the current documentary film “The WorthJourney”, we decided to include a few subjective thoughts and excerpts from scenarios that was cut from the final version of the film. We couldn’t fit what is written below into the film because the people that supported me filming did not experience the same challenges and adversities. So I thought the best way to clear my desk with the relevant experiences that wouldn’t go away, was to put it into a blog that one particular well-known publication is going to publish anyway. Besides in my opinion, the sole purpose of blogs, is to share the experiences and provide the social proof to back up the story.

Here goes:
Case 1:
In May of 2013, when I was going through passport control in the city that created the ingredients of “bullshit”- Los Angeles, I was asked; “How do you have two passports and why are you going to Ireland?” My reply was simple: “I live in Dublin sir”.

1
Dublin, Ireland 2014. Photo taken by J.Fitts

His response while stamping my American passport was; “Why, you’re not Irish and you certainly don’t sound Irish?” My response: “No of course I am not, but what does that have to do with my house, family, friends and paying tax in Eire over the last 20 plus years! I am using my American passport because I just want the easiest way to go through passport control bro. I have had enough of LA LA land.” Ironically enough, exactly a year after that incident leaving Canada with Tamara, I entered the States with my Irish passport and had no trouble. Tamara, who is Irish, was questioned..- Yeah go figure.

While walking through, after he stamped my passport, I told him that after going home for a few weeks I was going to Rodos, Greece for the summer then onwards to Sierra Leone my ethnic origin to start filming a documentary. His response was: “Well that is ok then, but where is that?”. Bro please.

Setting sail within the Greek Islands. 2014
Setting sail within the Greek Islands. 2014

Not only did this idiot at passport control provide more fuel for my fire for The WorthJourney, but I was also amazed how this guy, who was a person of color, held this position of control. You know I wonder why someone from Homeland Security or Passport Control wasn’t educated enough to know that people of color have been enabled to roam the planet as they choose for sometime. Perhaps we were equally amazed at one another but from two different perspectives. I felt like the guy in 12 years And A Slave that could read and the fellow slaves were pissed off at him for being able to and he just didn’t get it.

Leaving Santa Monica. May 2013.
Leaving Santa Monica. May 2013.

Was it because I looked like a basketball player wearing shades and nursing a hangover trying to being too cool that threw him off or was it because I didn’t flirt with him? Well I am heterosexual and if it had been an attractive female perhaps I would have- who knows? Although that did get me in a lot of trouble at the Greek/Macedonian boarder a year later, but man do I remember her smile. At any rate isn’t it amazing that this guy was giving me a hard time because he couldn’t understand how I was roaming freely without a care in the world?

Case 2:
It amazes me how many people hate America but love the programs, the freedom, the music and try so desperately to be American, even though they have never set foot in the land of the free.

During my trip through the Balkans region in the summer of 2014 and I couldn’t believe the amount of Yankees baseball hats there were as well as the amount of American Selfie poses there were. The world’s third largest country (Facebook) and the key holder of the Internet (Microsoft) were both created in America so why hate the land so much?

The world is a smaller place these days because of the latter, but it should also serve as some sort of platform for education and comparisons of traditions. Lets be frank, America doesn’t have any real traditions and in 2015 no true race. It’s still a new conquered land and a Big Party that has arguably or inarguably gone wrong. But is that the average hard working American fault? I love that Big Party, well at least in spurts.

Bill Clinton Statue.. In all places-- Prishtina, Kosovo. 2014
Bill Clinton Statue.. In all places– Prishtina, Kosovo. taken by JFitts. June 2014

If we all take the approach of accepting the Big Party that everyone wants to be apart of then perhaps we can concentrate on less negative attitudes towards the Big Party. Or else we could all shut up and stick to our own and not share, but don’t take from the Big Party and run home. Get it!

I get the political side of things and at some point who could disagree, I know most Americans hate the war(s) as well but someone has to maintain stability right?

None of this has anything to do with Fashion. That is a totally separate post altogether. I don’t think there is anywhere else in the world where people dress the same except in the 50 States that makes up America.

Zurich, Switzerland. late 2013
Zurich, Switzerland. late 2013- taken by. JFitts February 2014

Music and Television however seems to be a completely different story. The licensed television shows in different languages such as; the X-Factor, and the God awful reality shows are hilarious. With the exception of Ireland and England, there are more copycat programs exported from the Fat of Land than ever.

I wonder what Ice T and Afrika Islam would think of the kids that are trying to be what they were 30 years ago when they created hip-hop? Its amazing that some of those kids in either the Balkans or Greek Islands would tell  Ice T or “Izz” they got it wrong. Imagine that.. Funny right, well Google it.

It would be a sin to leave out G.A.S (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) in this but we have to blame the degenerate expats who wouldn’t go home after their service for allowing them to call hip hop “Black Music”. Isn’t that amazing that urban/hip-hop or soul could be considered Black Music and no one is offended. Hmm food for thought. If everyone is getting alone then why bother, or is it a case of keeping the blinds shut on equality.

Big Steve Def Jay Radio. Photos used by kind permission. 2015
Big Steve Def Jay Radio. Photos used by kind permission. 2015

What if Americans were taking traditional music from the Polish and singing it on street corners then tell the Polish they have it wrong. You guys want an example, put on a pot of coffee and research it.  

What’s the point I am trying to make? I was amazed that this is still going on. Is it about race? “No”. Is it about education? Hmm you’re the reader you be the judge. I personally think it has a lot to do with laziness and lack of communication amongst one another as people.

Irish Ferries. Copyright Controlled. 2015
Irish Ferries. Copyright Controlled. 2015

I miss those glory days of catching a ferry from Dublin to Holy Head, Wales after a great night out. Then meeting exciting people from all over the world that had very little fear and would buy each other beers.

Thank God for my local pub!

JFitts

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