By Francis White
“Every time I think I’m out, they pull me right back in!!!!”
Excuse me everyone, but I have a stone in my shoe. Right now I’ll refer to this pebble as “Jimmy Conway.” You see, Jimmy is a throwback to the old days, the days when men were known and respected by their skills in the street, as well as their skills in community building and business. The problem is that guys like Jimmy give guys like me a bad name, and that’s not good for business.
I was going to let it go, but I keep hearing reports from the old neighborhood about intimidation, to single mothers, grandparents, women, children and immigrants. Worse, Jimmy has been doing this not only in the old hood, but in other neighborhoods as well, and that’s not good for business. These people he’s preying on are the helpless among us; the ones who can least protect themselves from the big bad wolves and predators out here. We had a word for these types in my neighborhood growing up; we called them “suckas”. Only a sucka would act the way Jimmy is acting right now, and I know he’s better than that. I was going to let it go in the hopes that Jimmy would come to his senses and act like a normal human being instead of a wild animal, but I threw that idea out of my head when I heard Jimmy threatened one of my associates - that’s not good for business.
I called Jimmy to schedule a sit down, here’s what basically happened:
Francis: So Jimmy what’s going on? What’re you doing out here? I’m hearing bad things. That’s not good for business.
Jimmy: Yeah, I talked to the broad and told her what time it is. It’s a street thing Frank. You’ve gotten boosie, you’ve been hanging out with those yuppies too long, and you’ve gotten soft.
Frank: A street thing? Jimmy it’s 2015, not 1972. There’s a better, more humane, respectable, and sensible approach to the problem. We have lawyers now. You run your business like a dictator in a third world country. Having folk’s grandparents living with pools of crap in their basements, broken furnaces, and having locks that don’t work is bad for business. You see I run a clean, respectable operation, and now your goonish behavior is starting to cost me cash. That’s not good for business. Look, all I’m asking you is to clean up your operation. You’d actually make more money if you did business like a decent community citizen.
Jimmy: Who do you think you are? You call me with all your better than me rhetoric, grant money, sitting up on your high horse, trying to talk down to me? Screw you!!!
Francis: Jimmy, my operation is flourishing, because it’s a new day – we've evolved from being Neanderthals. We know how to treat people. We run a respectable and clean operation. As much as you think you can make life difficult for me, we can really make things quite uncomfortable for you. I’m trying to solve our problem in a…
Jimmy (cuts me off): Hold up wait, who do you think you’re freggin talking to - the waiter or the bar back or something? You don’t have no power on the street no more. Screw you!!!
Francis: Jimmy, you’re talking reckless.
Jimmy: I’m talking reckless? You gotta be freggin kidding me? You keep talking about what’s bad for business – screw you, and your business!!!
Francis: My business is the community’s business Jimmy.
Jimmy: You know what? Forgged about it, I know what I’m gonna do.
Francis: You’re gonna do what? Get D-Roc, or should I say “Boobi” from Langfield – the big black dude you got runnin around with you? Jimmy, when my crew shows up in big numbers, people listen. Boobi’s aunt, grandmother, and cousin are members of my outfit. When I show up outside your office with 500 of my soldiers from the community, they’ll be there too. You’re whole style and way of doing business is dated Jimmy - it’s played out. There’s no room for that in the new Buffalo Jimmy. I’m warning you to stop while you’re ahead.
Jimmy: Screw you!!!
Francis: It’s guys like you that give guys like me a bad name. Jimmy, I respect you and your legacy, but if you keep going like this, you’re going to end up like “The Bull.” Your outfit is sloppy and you’re running it like a street gang. And now, the “Men in Black” are crawling all over the scene, and that’s not good for business.
Jimmy: Screw you, “Don Francino” – the Godfather of sustainability.
(Jimmy abruptly hangs up the phone)
I want you guys to put the word out. If Jimmy keeps it up, keeps terrorizing innocent people, and threatens anymore of my associates, I’ll call out his name in public. How far is thing gonna go? That’s up to him. If you know any other would be, or wanna be Jimmies out there who are violating the rights of good, honest, and hardworking tenants - let me or my organization know. We have a tenant help initiative to help renters who may be experiencing a violation of their human and civil rights. You can call 716-884-0356.
Posted on Wed, February 18, 2015
by Francis White