Now that I’ve passed the milestone of 70 years, I feel somewhat complete.  It’s not the 70 years on the planet that defines destiny.  Rather, it’s reaching 71 years of age and finding a photograph of my father, probably taken around 1947 or 1948, as best I can tell.  At four years of age, I began to have consciousness of recall.  I recall and remember learning the A,B, C’s, climbing stairs, being in the neighborhood with other kids, chased by a bad dog, learning to ride a bicycle, nice little girls who lived down stairs and experiences like that.  I recall is listening to Ravelle’s Balero,  playing the records over-and-over again on a 78 record player, sitting down and playing on a Wurlitzer upright piano and having to go to church on Sundays.

Charlie E E Channel Sr at 714 Center Street, Oakland, CA circa 1944

This is a picture of my Dad.  Fun loving, hard working foreman at Moore’s Dry Dock in Oakland, California.

I’d misplaced the picture some years ago but I managed to look where I last remembered putting it and rediscovered an image of reality that defines my own existence:  Born an African American by a father and mother who were somehow different from others in terms of their love and loyalty for each other and other human beings.  So, finding the picture completes the awareness of my reality and existence.

The lesson is simple:  Intelligence randomly distributes. Some are born leaders and lovers of life, regardless of opportunities restricted by ignorance, stupidity, prejudice and arrogance.   That’s the point.  Period.