$274.67 is the price of my freedom
$161.00 – Legal filing with Washtenaw County Court
$20.00 – Finger prints from Ann Arbor Police Dept
$55.00 – Finger print check by Michigan State Police & FBI
$38.67 – Publication of Notice of hearing in the Ann Arbor News
Today I completed the last process step in my name change, which was placing a public notice in my local newspaper. The announcement will be in tomorrow’s news & I am kinda nervous to see it in black & white as this makes it very real for the world to see (if they haven’t read my Blog).
Yesterday I called the A2 News (A2 is short for Ann Arbor) & talked to a woman by the name of Ebony who answered all of my questions about placing my ad. She was very helpful then I threw her off a bit when I asked what forms of payments they took, and Ebony informed me that I could pay by cash, check or credit. So just to fuck with her, I asked if I could use a money order or bridge card (used in Michigan instead of food stamps), she then laughed & said that those would not work then conversation ended with a mutual chuckle.
So today I made my way to the A2 News to place my ad & Ebony was at the front desk. She asked to help me so I stated my business & reminded her of the brief conversation from yesterday, she laughed & said that if I really had a bridge card could I hook her up because she needed some groceries & I busted out laughing. While still laughing I handed her my court document & had a seat while she entered my info. Ten minutes later she called me back up to the desk & gave me a proof then I shelled out my $38.67.
While Ebony handed me my receipt she thanked me & congratulated me on my name change. I was kinda taken aback & she noticed so she said that this is major & kudos were in order. I then thought about how my friends are telling me that my name change is so major & even drastic but I guess I did not think that it was such a huge deal. So I guess now that it will be in black & white it really is a big deal.
Before I left the office of the A2 news I told the Afroed & informed Ebony that my paying to change my own name legitimately is like buying my freedom from my slave-master much like Lunsford Lane. At this we both laughed but we knew that this statement was so true.
After I got into my car, which was headed to Burger King for a #1 with cheese, no tomato, ketchup or pickle plus mustard cut in half with a Dr. Pepper, I called my Best Friend Brion (BFB) to let him know my progress. During our conversation I asked him (asked) if my name change was major & he basically said “hell yeah”, I then asked him if he considered me to be an extreme person & he quickly said without a doubt & I should already know that; your name change says it all; at this point we both laughed.
My question was stupid because like BFB said, I already knew, I guess it is the inner narcissist in me that made me ask.
My final step in this quicker than expected extreme process is to go to my court date scheduled for March 6th @ 3pm.
Its on & Poppin’,
Slave Narrative of Lunsford Lane:
Lunsford Lane, who grew up on a plantation near Raleigh, North Carolina, manufactured pipes and tobacco and succeeded in saving enough money to buy his own freedom and purchase his wife and seven children. Here, he describes his experiences as a slave child.
My father was a slave to a near neighbor. The apartment where I was born and where I spent my childhood and youth was called “the kitchen,” situated some fifteen or twenty rods from the “great house.” Here the house servants lodged and lived, and here the meals were prepared for the people in the mansion….
My infancy was spent upon the floor, in a rough cradle, or sometimes in my mother’s arms. My early boyhood in playing with the other boys and girls, colored and white, in the yard, and occasionally doing such little matters of labor as one of so young years could. I knew no difference between myself and the white children; nor did they seem to know any in turn. Sometimes my master would come out and give a biscuit to me, and another to one of his own white boys; but I did not perceive the difference between us. I had no brothers or sisters, but there were other colored families living in the same kitchen, and the children playing in the same yard with me and my mother…..
When I began to work, I discovered the difference between myself and my master’s white children. They began to order me about, and were told to do so by my master and mistress. I found, too, that they had learned to read, while I was not permitted to have a book in my hand. To be in possession of anything written or printed, was regarded as an offense. And then there was the fear that I might be sold away from those who were dear to me, and conveyed to the far South. I had learned that being a slave I was subject to the worst (to us) of all calamities; and I knew of others in similar situations to myself, thus sold away. My friends were not numerous; but in proportion as they were few they were dear; and the thought that I might be separated from them forever, was like that of having the heart wrenched from its socket; while the idea of being conveyed to the far South, seemed infinitely worse than the terrors of death.
Source: The Narrative of Lunsford Lane (Boston, 1842)