POST: 'Bamboo In Bushwick' - I actually live in Bushwick

What's it about? 

Gentrification has found its way to Bushwick and the community members are not happy about it. Things heat up when street artist take to painting over the art that was made to honor members of the neighborhood.  

What I experienced? 

 I don’t know why but every time it decides to rain really hard, I'm on my way to the theater. Thankfully I actually had an umbrella in my book bag. *Thank you Mom!* Yup, my mother still does that. What can I say, I'm her only child. But this rain was way stronger than my umbrella and it broke... so when this happened I wanted to go back home. The only thing holding me back, I wanted to watch the play. The staff member who gave me my ticket, I could tell he wanted to laugh, that is how wet I was. Not a very pretty picture.  

When I was looking for a play to watch, I came across Bamboo In Bushwick I knew it was meant to be because I actually live in Bushwick. I'm about to watch a play about my own community and what is happening to it right now. So at this point, I've already forgotten that my clothes are drenched. I wish a couple of my friends from my neighborhood were here with me, because I have a feeling this play is going to touch upon a lot of issues that we see.  

Here comes Crispin, the Puerto Rican papi of Bushwick!! He starts off with a monologue speaking about the amazing things from Bushwick and how the community has changed over the years because of gentrification. I can relate so much to this because I'm watching families I grew up with moving out because the rent is increasing, small businesses are closing down, and unknown people are moving in that I'm not used to seeing. Part of me just wanted to stand up and start clapping... but it is just the beginning of the play.  

Another favorite character of mine was Nirt. He was a white hipster that has been living in Bushwick for 5 years and is actually part of the community. What I found strange was how he was as equally mad when other white people were moving into the community. Crispin and Nirt together went against this group of artists who recently moved to the community. This is the moment in the play where I realized that being in this theater has been the best decision of my day. I felt like that because an issue I care about, gentrification, is being brought up and starting a conversation.  

At the end of the show, the entire audience and the actors had a conversation about communities like Bushwick. I, of course, had to say something about my community and how gentrification is affecting it in a negative way. It honestly felt good just speaking about it and getting to hear the opinion of others, but also hearing how my community is not the only one that’s going through this. Bamboo In Bushwick made me extremely proud of where I come from.