November 18, 2019
It was a residential neighborhood. I mean, all the children would play a lot on the streets. I mean, I wasn’t allowed because my great-grandmother was very protective. I know one day when I was outside playing, I had a death experience where I got hit. I have a dent in the head ,and I have a lump in the back. My brothers used to always say, “Oh, he’s playing dead,” because I was always getting in trouble with them, and I would just say, “Well, if I pass out, you’re going to get beat. So I’ll just pass out.”
But when I got hit by the bike, they said that they called my brother to come down. He thought I was joking, so he threw me in the garbage can and put the garbage lid on it and went back in the house. And my great-grandmother said, “Well, where is he? Go get Marvin.” He said, “He’s outside playing.” She said, “Well, go and get him,” and they went back outside and they couldn’t find me. So he said, “Oh my gosh. I’ve got a garbage can,” and I was still there. So they had to call the ambulance because he didn’t tell them that he put me in there because he didn’t want to get in trouble.
They rushed me to Brookdale Hospital in East New York. Well, that’s where I lived, East New York, but it’s near Brownsville. When they took me there I was DOA, and my great-grandmother was like, “I’m not going to let this happen.” The funny thing is that I saw them. They were sitting in the waiting room, but they couldn’t see me. I was just floating around. I said, “I can fly,” and all this stuff, and something pulled me back. I was like, “Oh, no.” Then I came back and I was in pain and everything.
When I got home, I told them, “Why were y’all quiet?” and she said, “What do you mean?” I said, “You were all sitting in the room. I didn’t understand what room it was, but you were all crying and upset.” They said, “What did we have on?” and I described everything. And they was like, “How did you know what we had on?” I said, “I saw y’all. I was sitting in the room.” So ever since then, she wouldn’t let me go outside. The most I could do is sit from the window and watch everybody play.
She got overly protective because she said, “You might get hurt and die or something.” So I was like, “Whatever,” but it was a very nice neighborhood. They played games. I mean, some families allowed their children out to 2:00, 3:00, 4:00, 5:00 in the morning playing. So I used to say, “Why can’t I do that?” She wouldn’t allow it.
My playground was basically in the house or in the yard until she passed away when I was 10. Then they started letting me out. Afterwards, we would do different, assorted games. My parents’ backyard was the largest backyard, so all the kids would play all their games there, so it was really nice.