Estimated reading time: 7 minute(s)
On Thursday, April 22, I accompanied my older siblingÂ Brother Deric MuhammadÂ during a visit to Forest Brook Middle School located in Northeast Houston.
This was a homecoming for the both of us.
Originally this campus was Forest Brook Senior High School–a place where Bro. Deric used to wreck havoc on teachers and administrators.Â He eventually graduated in the late 80’sÂ and nearly ten years later I graduated from the same school. But we did not have the same type of grades. (smile)
The district is considered one of the worse in the state of Texas and the expectations of anyone doing something great out of the neighborhoodÂ gets slimmer and slimmer. But we beat the odds just like others. This campus went through a lot of turmoil after being hit by a severe hurricane years ago,Â so the district has been juggling what to do with the facility. The facility is now a combination of students from Kirby Middle School and Oak Village Middle School along with courses offered on the third floor from Houston Community College.
On this particular day, Bro. Deric was invitedÂ to be a keynote speaker for the 7th Grade Honors Day Program. As I sat in the back and took photos, I smiled because I remember this same speaker having to go to night school during his senior year so he could get a cap and gown. This is the same speaker who was known for starting fights at the former Club Gucci’s just a few blocks away at Homestead and Parker Rd.
Neither those students nor the teachersÂ fully knew what they were lookingÂ at but of course I did–a resurrected man. My big brother.
He mounted the podium and started off his talk by readingÂ a motivational poem he wrote for the students. (Note: He was once a rapper who went by the stage name Xodus)
Then he took the microphone and began to walk the stage to get closer to the young audience.Â In only 15 minutes he reached the mindsÂ of the students more effectively than many who may speak for two hours.
“How many of you like Lil Wayne? How many of you like Nicki Minaj? How many of you all like Barack Obama?â€ asked Bro. Deric, as all hands went up in the air.
“Well, I want you to be so great that Lil Wayne will want to meet you one day. Be so great that Nicki Minaj will want to meet you.Â Be so great that Barack Obama will want to meet you. But you have to think big!” said Bro. Deric.
It was done. Short and effective.
I am proud of my brother.