Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The Chronicles of EE, A Documentary In Progress

So as you all may remember I am working on a documentary that I hope to enter into the Mixed Roots Film Festiaval. It will be somewhat of a redux of this blog and my video blogs, specifically dealing with what led me to move to Israel and what keeps me here. It will be my magnum opus, about my life and will hopefully do some justice for people who are my position.

The Position

What positioin is that you ask? Well, as you may have read on the side of this blog I come from a mixed background. Yet, as you may read in a number of posts about my past that I grew up in a number of different environments and only recently decided that I was going to live my life based on all of the element of what it took to make me. Of course, my decision was that Yahaduth (Judaism) would be the center jewel and everything else would surround that.

That last statement is important, because from time time I get comments on my YouTube page from people who try to claim I am deny my "blackness." In reality I can't deny something I don't use to define myself. The family that I had that was from Africa were specifically from three regions that are modernly known as Senegal, Mali, and Mauritania. They were eventually mixed with Jews who made their way into the region from Yemen and North Africa. So accept all of this, but I am very specific about what I accept. I accept ONLY what my family once accepted for ourselves before America, and it would seem to me that I am being very clear about the fact that I have West African ancestry from SPECIFIC locations. I know what this means for me and my own personality, better than anyone else. It also no secret that I go by the Yemenite and the Senegali sides of my ancestry, that is me and that is how I define myself.

If someone else feels that this falls into their definition of black, then so be it, but for me the black and white dichotomy is meaningless and an American based phenomena so I pretty much ignore. Of course there are those who have labeled me a sellout because of that, but so what I could care less how anyone else wants to define me. I am the master of my own ship, and I have had people talk down of me no matter what path I chose. Yet, that is another story.

Get Back to the Documentary

So the title of this post is about the documentary I am working on. It is progressing nicely, and starting next week I will be walking around to places in Jerusalem to film the segments of myself. I have already done 3 interviews of fellow Israels, some of whom are of mixed descent and I have a few more that I will look into adding. I have also started working on some segments to fill between the discussions about myself and the world I live in here in Israel. I have even gotten some interest at my job from people who didn't I know I was doing films on YouTube.

What this means though is that I will have to look into stepping up my game a bit. Last week my room mate hosted a friend of his who is a film maker from South Africa. He put me onto a film software from Adobe that has some real power behind it. So now I need to start working on learning it, something I sometimes I hate. I really need though because I want to have some map animations for the film and for future YouTube videos. I also may need to buy a better camera to do some of the filming. The small digital camera I have works wonders, but maybe I also need something more high end to really capture Israel in its real beauty.

I need to focus all my energies on this one since I want people to understand that often what they get from Western media about the Middle East is not very accurate. I also know that there aren't many people with my experience and my Israeli reality. Not to brag, but I have finally come to terms that my experience is unique and I can't bottle that up any longer. Sometimes this is hard to put into words, because my life here in Israel is just something that I live and I often find it hard to really give something that seems so regular to me. It is like taking pictures of a place where you live. Sometimes you are so accustomed to your own world that you don't see what may be different about it when compared to the rest of the world.

So good people I will do my best to write about this process as it progresses. Until then the Chronicles of Ehav Ever will continue.

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