The historic, all women spacewalk didn’t happen. NASA didn’t have 2 spacesuits equipped to handle a woman’s smaller size. Blah, blah. blah. What a way to end women’s history month; a logical conclusion based on excuses rather than the admittance of gender bias. In lieu of a historic moment, we saw a historic trend. The spacewalk was a female/male partnership. Women, we partner and make it work. Friday evening, I was part of an electrified audience. An audience where strangers engaged excitingly in conversation. An audience where people were rapt with attention and not doing a phone checks. Why? Ear Hustle!!!
Ear Hustle was conceived as a podcast for the incarcerated, by the incarcerated, to be played on the closed-circuit station in San Quentin State Prison in California; it’s turned into a worldwide phenomenon with over 20 million downloads. Nigel Poor, a woman who partnered and made it work. During the program Nigel Poor described how she started volunteering at San Quentin and what led to the podcast. Podcast cohost and inmate Earlonne Woods shared his effort to get transferred to San Quentin. This doesn’t begin to describe the essence of a one-hour program, people laughed, I mean that foot stomping laughter where you nod at the stranger beside you and laugh some more. People cried, that kind of trying to hold it in and realizing everyone is crying so you let it go. Sprinkled with raucous applause, not this finger snapping or “sparkling hands” but fist pumping, whooping and hollering applause. Look, I can’t do this justice. You can catch the broadcast of this City Arts program on April 28th or better still, check out an episode of Ear Hustle.
Sure, there wasn’t a historic “first” of an all-female spacewalk this week. As we close out March, celebrate women, our passion and partnership to just make things work.
…Back to basketball. Final Four, here we come.