‘Daily life in Central Africa’

I want to think OM from HarsH ReaLiTy for giving me an opportunity to share a day in the life of William Chasterson in Central Africa.

Your probably asking, “William what the heck is ‘Daily life in…'” Well let me explain. It’s your opportunity to showcase where you’re from. Show us your hometown. Click here for details on how you can participate.

I’ve been doing volunteer work in Central Africa for almost two years now. It would be remiss of me not to mention a particular aspect of daily life here, and that’s police brutality. This is especially on my mind in light of recent events. First I’ll mention something that happened to me the other day. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts I rent an apartment connected to a bar which features loud revelries until the break of dawn. Here’s a picture of the front of my house on a typical morning after such an event.

Anyways the other day the loud music was overshadowed by shouting and noisy activity surrounding the house. I ran to the back window and overheard a man threatening to kill someone over being accused of lying. Though he was worked up his neighbors managed to wrestle him away from his victim. The shouting continued however and carried into the front of the house where the entire neighborhood seemed to be gathered. We turned off all the lights and discreetly peeked out the window as we heard a physical confrontation. People were yelling, “You are murderers!” The police showed up and we heard more shouting, threats and the cocking of arms. I called my friend who’s sister is a police and she advised us not to leave the house. If someone knocks on the door we were to call her brother. Eventually the situation calmed and the police arrested someone after giving him a thorough beat down. The next morning I heard that my friend was in the hospital. The same night he was offering us advice on avoiding a violent confrontation he was attacked by the police and beaten unconscious. He’s a taxi driver so he innocently picked up a female passenger who hailed him. All at once another car wildly swerved out of nowhere and started chasing them. At this point the girl nonchalantly mentions that it’s her jealous boyfriend that is chasing her. My friend wants to do the right thing so he drives to a check point figuring the girl will be safe in the presence of the police. The girl gets out and walks towards the police while the pursuers jump out of their car and begin assaulting my friend. There are four men who beat him while the girl’s boyfriend who by the way is armed takes the lead. The police/soldiers at the checkpoint stand by idly while my friend is mercilessly beaten unconscious. Apparently the girl’s boyfriend was some sort of high ranking officer which makes him above the law. My friend was told that the aggressor was locked up and the other men fled the scene. But most likely no one was arrested.


Poster on Ebola prevention

Drunk driving accident 

This is called bush meat. It’s monkey.

Someone attempted to break into my house using a machete like this one. I wrote about it in another post entitled ‘Machete‘.

Power Line Spaghetti 

Dead tarantula almost the size of my fist.

One of the dogs that alert us to approaching thieves.

Snails. Sometimes they try to escape but rarely succeed. It’s a slow getaway.

This is what happens to the ground in the rainy season.

A litter of stray puppies. Here dogs are free.

A typical kitchen.

Giant centipede 

This poster hangs in most barber shops.

Friends preparing fish for a gathering 

A boy selling credit for phones. Here all of the phones are ‘pay as you go’.

Third world antenna.

At the market

https://vine.co/v/O5KIKaL7LF2 

https://williamchasterson.wordpress.com/2015/02/20/mankinds-search-for-the-superman/

When Metaphysical Man, Atro City’s resident superhero and trendsetter is inadvertently sucked into an alternate world by a mysterious super villain he’s forced to overcome his only weakness; reality. Read more at http://smashwords.com/books/view/540303#amreading #amwriting

William Chasterson on coming out of the closet as a #blerd

After thirty seven years I recently came out of the closet as a blerd. For those of you unfamiliar with this term, blerd is a black nerd. Now you may wonder how is it possible for someone to be a blerd for thirty seven years and fail to recognize it. Well, just try and imagine yourself in my shoes as I attempt to explain. 

I was a young black kid born in the black section of Milwaukee Wisconsin in the eighties. As I was being brought up I followed in my older brother’s footsteps and gravitated to the same things they were interested in. It was the age of He-Man action figures, Thunder Cats, breakdancing, painters caps, fat laces, nyolaters (the hard fruit candy ‘now and later’), iron on t-shirts, Voltron and transformers. I was bussed out of the neighborhood to a school in the suburbs for kindergarten and first grade as part of a vouchers program. This is when I had my first contact with white people. Children have no concept of racial inequality so although I was a brown spot on a canvas of white I wasn’t made to feel different by the other kids. I even had a white girlfriend which at that age basically meant I had a friend who was a white girl. We called ourselves boyfriend and girlfriend though. At that time, life for me didn’t seem complicated but all of that was soon to change.

Because of domestic violence my mother took us kids and fled to her hometown in Ohio called Fostoria. This small town which the last time I checked had a population of 15,000 people is where I was placed after being uprooted from the city. The environment and culture of this agricultural town was in stark contrast to our previous surroundings. I had never before seen real life farm animals. The locals used to get a kick out of the reactions of my siblings and I to seeing real cows and chickens for the first time. It was in my primary years that the first signs of blerdhood began to surface. Unlike Milwaukee (probably because we were too young to care) the kids in Fostoria were well aware of the differences in race. But it wasn’t that big of a deal. It was a fact, like the sky is blue and water’s wet. It was here that I for the first time heard the chant: “A fight. A fight. A nigger and a white. If the white don’t win, we all jump in.” The kids sang this song without thinking and with no animosity towards blacks. Many times it was two white kids fighting when they began to sing it. Once I was with a group of kids and they didn’t realize until they were halfway into the song that I might be offended by the lyrics. In primary school I was always the only black kid in my class, so I stood out. Over time something else started to cause me to stand out. I began developing a firmer grasp on scholastic matters than my peers which made some kids begin to dislike me. 

A new word emerged in our society that promised to define an entire class of people in a humorous way. The movie “revenge of the nerds” defined this group of misfits with even more detail. It didn’t take long for my peers to realize that I fit in with this group but only I wasn’t white. You had to be white at that time to succinctly be referred to as a nerd. Nevertheless I ran from the label and did anything I could to pretend to fit in. I tried to dress according to what the other kids considered cool though my family never had much money. Everyone in my family wore glasses and I was no exception. I had thick coke bottle lenses without which I was nearly blind. It was obvious that I was trying to be something that I wasn’t but so was everyone else at that age. Besides, there still was no clear label that my schoolmates could attach to me, that is until the show “Family Matters” came onto the scene and the world was introduced to the character “Steve Urkel”. With the introduction of Urkel into pop culture the black nerd icon was complete. It didn’t help that I looked a little bit like the character especially to those who think all blacks look alike anyways.

Around this time I went into jr high or middle school where the town’s minority students became more concentrated as all the primary schools bottle necked into one building for 6-8th grade. In the nineties black awareness was in full swing. Minority kids wore Cross Colors, Karl Kani and Tommy Hilfiger. It was then that I was made aware of a new fact. Something that was always as clear to me as the sky’s blue and water’s wet was now up for interpretation. My blackness was now being questioned. Because of my diction I was told I speak like a white person which I should of been offended by because these people were insinuating that black people can’t be intellectual and speak with good diction. I was in fact offended, but for a different reason. I wanted to be black. I wanted to fit in with the other minorities. I wanted to be able to use the word ‘nigga’ naturally. The Ebonics  word always got stuck in my throat when I tried to use it. I decided I would need to make a drastic change. I gradually allowed my grades to slip and I gravitated towards minority kids with behavioral problems. It took me a while to be accepted into their clique but they did eventually accept me perhaps out of compassion. I was still a blerd but I was trying to pretend I was a hip hop gangster. This new phase I was going through brought with it the animosity society directs towards rebels but didn’t bring with it the romanticism that attracts many to the bad boy persona. I was secretly seen as not quite genuine throughout my high school years. I was the not so Great Gatsby.

As I get older I find myself caring less about what people think about the real me. It’s not that I enjoy standing out or purposely do things to go against the grain but rather I now see the importance of having a clear sense of self. If I’m being myself and others have an aversion to me I no longer see the need to transform myself into something I’m not in order to gain their approval. One of my best friends said something to me recently that is both troubling and telling. I wrote some articles under a pen name and I don’t know if he even read them or not but he said “I don’t like this person”. He knew it was me that wrote the articles but he assumed that because I used a different name that I didn’t really believe in what I had written. He thought I wrote it for shock value. In reality they are my real thoughts though I’m sure he misunderstood them. “If he doesn’t like this person,” I thought, “In reality he doesn’t like me. In order to be liked by him I need to either change my inner feelings or hide them from him. Do I really need a friend like that?” As I get older I’m deciding more often than not that the answer is no. “That’s what I’ve done my entire life,” I realized, “and I don’t want to do it anymore. There has to be other people out there like me.” That’s when I came across the word ‘blerd’ while surfing online. I discovered that there is a whole community of black nerds just like me. 

When Metaphysical Man, Atro City’s resident superhero and trendsetter is inadvertently sucked into an alternate world by a mysterious super villain he’s forced to overcome his only weakness; reality. Read more at http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/540303 #amreading #amwriting

Exclusive Interview with William Chasterson by Metaphysical Man !!!

MM: Thank You for taking the time to sit down with me for this interview mr. Chasterson.

WC: Call me William. It’s my pleasure. It’s not everyday one gets interviewed by a real superhero.

MM: William I first want to address a recent controversy regarding your blog. Some readers were offended by some of the quotes you posted from historical figures who have communistic or national socialist ideologies. Are you a Communist or Nazi?

WC: No. Communists, Nazis, and for that matter even Democrats and Republicans all have one thing in common, and that is a firm belief in man’s ability to rule himself. I do not have this faith. I believe that if man could successfully rule himself it would have been conclusively proven over the past thousands of years of human history. Despite great advances in technology man has only found more effective ways to exploit and destroy one another. I do not believe in the philosophies of Friedrich Nietzsche or Karl Marx.

MM: Then why did you post their quotes?

WC: What I posted were excerpts from my new book ‘Breed the secret design to maintain racial inequality among the despised classes’. The quotes are actually chapter titles in my book. Like most books the chapter title gives a clue as to what is about to take place in the story. The same is true of my book. My book is fiction. I challenge anyone who has actually read my book to present me with evidence that I am advocating racial superiority or any other catylist for human suffering.

MM: In order to take you up on that challenge wouldn’t it be at their own cost? Your book is not free.

WC: Actually for the month of September I am offering ‘Breed the secret design to maintain racial inequality among the despised classes’ for free. Anyone who wants can download a free copy from the smashwords website using the coupon code found on the homepage of my blog williamchasterson.wordpress.com. Judge for yourself the content of my book at no personal cost.

MM: That sounds like a fair deal. What’s next for William Chasterson?

WC: As you know I’m working on a project that includes yourself and examines how modern man views himself in contrast to others.

MM: When can we expect to see this project released?

WC: It’s due to be released the summer of 2015

MM: Thanks again for taking the time to be interviewed.

WC: Thank you for taking time off of fighting crime to conduct this interview.

When Metaphysical Man, Atro City’s resident superhero and trendsetter is inadvertently sucked into an alternate world by a mysterious super villain he’s forced to overcome his only weakness; reality. Read more at http://smashwords.com/books/view/540303#amreading #amwriting

Which do you prefer?

 

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Before

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After

 

Six months ago I had an accident while exploring in an undisclosed location in Africa. Doctors recommend that if you move from a cooler climate to the tropics you should allow your body to adjust to the new environment. I had to learn this the hard way. Instead of slowing my pace I actually increased my activities because of my work. In protest my body shut down and I lost consciousness. When I woke up I discovered that I had taken a header into a tiled floor. My two front teeth were pushed back and loose and another tooth broke. This is going to sound gross but I had to pull my teeth forward and bite down on something to force them back in place. Where I’m at dental work isn’t a high priority and I thought it gave my face character. But while in the states I decided to go to the dentist and it’s a good thing I did. I was told I had an infection. While the two front teeth tightened in place nicely, I was told the broken tooth would not set in place because of the infection. Eventually my face would swell up and my tooth would fall out. After completing a course of antibiotics I was given a root canal and a filling was placed on my broken tooth. It looked just like new. But a few days ago it popped off while I was flossing. Again I pondered if it was worth it to get it fixed again. Nevertheless I decided to return to the dentist. This time they put a temporary plastic cap on the tooth. I’m headed back into the third world in about a week and I don’t have time to wait for my insurance to approve a porcelain crown. What do you think? Should I have gone through all this trouble or just left it alone?

 

 

 

Examine the belief in ourselves as supermen and women with this new book via http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/540303#book #reader 

Who is William Chasterson ???

 

 

 

 

 

Who is William Chasterson ???

When Metaphysical Man, Atro City’s resident superhero and trendsetter is inadvertently sucked into an alternate world by a mysterious super villain he’s forced to overcome his only weakness; reality. Read more at http://smashwords.com/books/view/540303#amreading #amwriting

My Story

I realize I’m doing this backwards. Usually people introduce themselves before they begin talking. But I jumped right in and began posting because I was very excited about my first book. After four months of posting allow me to take a moment and introduce myself. My name is William Chasterson. I’m a writer and a student of history. I was raised in the Midwest of the United States in a very conservative town of about 15,000 people. In my twenties I moved to New York which is where I’ve been for the past 15 years. After the first few years of culture shock I was finally able to settle into my environment and actually consider myself a New Yorker. For the past year and a half however I’ve been living in the third world. I’m not going to mention the name of the country I moved to because governments can be sensitive at times and although I have nothing negative to say about any government. They could arrive at the wrong conclusion and I could wind up behind bars. 

How did I end up here? 

I’ve always had an inclination to want to be successful. But I felt something was lacking in the traditional means and end most people use to arrive at what they consider to be a success. I wanted to contribute something positive to society. For years I’ve done volunteer work but I always felt as if I was holding back somehow. I wanted to do more and my wife and I talked about one day making a grand sacrifice and traveling to an underdeveloped country. Then one day we found that ten years had passed by and all we had done is talk. We were getting older. If we were going to contract some rare disease while helping others, now was the time to do it. We’re still young enough to be able to bounce back. But the clock was ticking. We decided that it was now or never. We needed to either take action or stop talking about it. Although I had a nice paying job with flexible hours I decided to quit. My employers couldn’t understand my decision and it was difficult for me to explain. On the exit interview every question implied that I had found a better job and they wanted feedback on what they could have done differently to retain me. After I left my job things began moving rather quickly. I rolled my 401K savings over into an IRA. We got our travel vaccinations and malaria pills. We stocked up on everything we thought we would need to get us through the first year. We’ve always considered ourselves as living simple lives. But when you have to gather up and store everything you own you may find you have more possessions than you thought. That’s what happened in our case. Friends did us the favor of storing what we could not take. Long story short, we boarded the plane and embarked on a new phase in our lives.

The first year

The first year was harder than we could have ever imagined and the plans we made to support ourselves caught snag after snag until finally falling through. This meant we had to rely on our savings more than expected. The country we moved to has no middle class. In America people talk about their not being a middle class or the middle class being under attack but until you actually experience a society with no middle class it’s impossible to imagine. First of all there is a small class of über rich people and a much larger class of extremely poor people. I  expected everything to be cheap but the opposite is true. There’s no competition for prices because the rich don’t complain or bargain. Whatever things cost they just pay and keep it moving. The poor can’t afford any luxuries. They live in survival mode. Imagine high prices and low quality products and food and you’ll have an accurate picture of what it’s like here. Compared to Western societies even the rich here live relatively rough lives. While the poor just subsist in the most barren of environments. It’s kind of like George Orwell’s 1984. Despite the challenges however we have had much success in the volunteer work we came to do. I’m not using this blog as a forum to further my volunteer work at this time. Most of the people I work with don’t even have computers. For this reason I won’t go into great detail about the work. But I will say we educate people to make practical changes which enables them to live happier lives. I know our decision to move seemed unusual to many but I always believed that deep down everyone wanted to do what we were doing. We’re not special in any way. We saw an opportunity and we grabbed it. If given the same opportunity I felt anyone else would do the same. This belief has changed somewhat but I don’t want to talk about that right now. We sent a lot of emails and pictures back home because we thought everyone would be interested in what we were doing. We carefully filtered the emails because although we were suffering we didn’t want to discourage anyone. We only chose pictures where we were enjoying ourselves and we highlighted only the good experiences. Far from discouraging however I get the impression that the emails had the opposite effect. Some may have thought we were having the time of our lives and were bragging. We were actually having the time of our lives but not in the ways they may have imagined. On our return to the states I once again experienced culture shock but now in a different way. Everything was convenient but there was an overpowering stress that permeated everything. On the surface it seems that living in the third world is much harder because of the poverty, poor hygiene and strong military presence. But the stress I felt on my return was harder for me to deal with than anything I experienced the previous year. I blame no one for this. Human beings (including myself) are complex strange creatures. I’ve documented some of these experiences in my new book Metaphysical Man which is due to be released July 1st 2015. I’ll most likely be updating this post as time goes on so that those who might be interested can find out what eventually happens to us. But that’s all for now.

Sincerely Yours,

William Chasterson


Want a sneak peek of my upcoming novel? Preorders are now available @pubslush! Get some great early bird rewards : ) Link to http://smashwords.com/books/view/540303

Meet Guest Author William Chasterson

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

William Chasterson Logo

Allow me to take a moment and introduce myself. My name is William Chasterson. I’m a writer and a student of history. I was raised in the Midwest of the United States in a very conservative town of about 15,000 people. In my twenties I moved to New York which is where I’ve been for the past 15 years. After the first few years of culture shock I was finally able to settle into my environment and actually consider myself a New Yorker. 

Why did I write ‘BREED’?

As an African American raised in a predominantly white conservative town I’ve always been fascinated with race. I could never fully wrap my mind around the concept of racism. I wrote BREED as an attempt to work out in my mind whether or not racial inequality has any merit. I didn’t know when I started what conclusion I would end up with…

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