I don’t believe anything says more about where I’m at going into this Ramadan, than the fact that for the first time, I have no major vices to give up.
All three dimensions that I feel define ‘Malik Aziz’ are peaking, and they’re all very visible (for all of the definitions of me as ‘super mysterious/secretive’).
As far as my ‘GQ cover boy movie star’ side goes, I’m crazy excited for you to see the project I’ve been prepping. I can’t say much about it without ruining the joke, but it’s another of those short, layered pieces that I feel are part of my ‘signature.’ If ‘Lady’ showed off my dramatic side, this one really establishes my comedic voice. Strongly. I had planned to have it shot already but life got in the way. The music is done (thanks Jermaine!), I have the cast and crew I love, this is going to be nice. I was aiming for the end of the summer, but the return of ‘Greenlight’ might have moved up when I want to shoot this…
As far as my ‘spiritually grounded citizen of the world’ side goes, the most joyful part of my life right now is doing as much as I’m able to affect others. The higher profile work I do with the SAG Foundation and BookPALs, the off the radar work I do that’s more individual and directly affects people on an individual level. Once I found my own peace and I started asking ‘what else?’, the advice that stuck with me (from Farrahkhan as some of you recall) was to recommit to serving others who don’t have/will never have the breaks I was given. And I’ve only just begun.
As far as my ‘romantic clown’ side goes, that element is enjoying this extended peace. Some of you pick up on it through our ‘social media’ relationship, some of you who know me in ‘real life’ sense it in my attitude and overall demeanor. My very proud individuality surely played its part in how long it’s taken for me to find my ‘comfort zone’, so did starting my romantic life as an African-American Muslim artist living in Kansas (that’s really it’s own movie isn’t it?), but I think the combination of natural maturity and life experience (learning what works and what doesn’t), and let’s be honest, not a perfect love life but more importantly not having any “You took 5 to 10 years out of my life that I can’t get back” experience, I’ve remained optimistic. And it’s paid/paying off. Another benefit of patience I guess: without spending a lot of time going in another direction, that ‘grass is greener’ mentality is gone. Said another way: the women in my life that I choose to go all in with relationship wise are the women who very obviously want to be a part of my life. That young mentality, chasing someone who’s toying with you or who lets you know pretty straight out ‘You’re not my type’; now my attitude toward women like that is still polite, but also very definitely, ‘I believe you.’
I took the longest way possible to say ‘I’ve found my type’ didn’t I? (laughing) Well, you get it.
In the past I’ve used Ramadan as a reason to go into complete seclusion. Those days have passed as well. Being the three dimensional 21st century hippie that I am means there’s no longer an offseason to being a world citizen. So my LA friends, I hope I’ll continue to see you over the next month even if my energy level may be low until the evening hours. For my Muslim brothers and sisters around the world, I pray for a blessed Ramadan for you as I’m sure you do for me.
And the rest of you…have a good weekend!