It’s hard to imagine a book as timeless, yet personal, as “Stay Gold, Ponyboy”. The novel has been adapted into a film multiple times and is featured in the movie “Ponyo,” released in 2008.
In 1969, when I was just 7 years old, my family moved from our small town in rural Kentucky to a neighborhood in west Houston. The move was instigated by my father’s new job with the oil company BP. We were the first family of color to live on our block, and I quickly learned that being different wasn’t always easy. But it was also thrilling to be part of this dynamic and growing community; we all had something to offer each other.
As a kid, one of my favorite things to do was hang out at the grocery store down the street. I would wander around, looking at the different items and imagining what they might taste like cooked up in a dish. One day, after trying a piece of candy corn for the first time, I decided that I wanted to become an artist—something that would allow me to communicate my feelings directly through food.
It wasn’t easy becoming an artist. In fact, it was downright tough at times. But I persisted, and eventually my work began to be exhibited in local galleries and sold online. These days, I’m still creating art—but now it’s through cooking instead of painting or sculpture. And while there are still many challenges ahead of me, I know that staying gold is always worth striving for
As a young boy, I was fascinated by the music of the 80s and 90s. My parents would buy me albums like Michael Jackson’s Thriller and Whitney Houston’s The Bodyguard, and I would spend countless hours listening to them. I also loved watching movies like The Nightmare Before Christmas and Home Alone.
In elementary school, I started wearing makeup and sneakers even though my friends didn’t. I was into girls then, but I knew that wasn’t what I wanted to do with my life. So instead, I concentrated on becoming a musician like my heroes.
In middle school, a new kid in school named Rocky started hanging out with us kids. He had a different style than us—he wore baggy clothes and wore his hair in cornrows. But we were all drawn to his music. He played rap music from the Bay Area and we were blown away by how soulful it sounded.
Rocky introduced us to Tupac Shakur, Biggie Smalls, Dr. Dre, Ice-T and other great hip-hop artists of the era. We were blown away by their lyrical brilliance and their powerful beats. We all became huge fans of hip-hop, even though we never spoke about it outside of the group.
We spent our free time going to video stores to rent movies like Juice (1992), Boyz n the Hood (1991) and Wild Style (1999). We would often stay up late watching them or
Assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.
When I was young, my grandparents used to tell me about Martin Luther King, Jr. They would say that he was a great man who had done great things for his community. In the early 1960s, when I was just starting elementary school, Dr. King was assassinated. At the time, it seemed like such a terrible thing to happen. It made me realize how fragile life can be and how important it is to do what you believe in – even if it means risking your safety. Even though I was only a child at the time of Dr. King’s death, his message still resonates with me today. I know that by standing up for what’s right, we can make a difference in the world.
Juvenile Delinquency and Arrested Development
It was 1987 and Ponyboy Curtis had just turned 13 when he embarked on what would become a lifelong journey of crime and incarceration. By the time he was 21, Curtis had been arrested more than 60 times, mainly for petty theft and possession of drugs. In 2000, after serving six years in prison on drug charges, Ponyboy was released to a halfway house in Los Angeles. Rehabilitation proved elusive; by 2006 he had been arrested again, this time for robbery with a deadly weapon.
Today, Ponyboy is 47 years old and living on the streets of East LA. His last known address is an abandoned warehouse near the train tracks. He suffers from mental illness and addiction to crack cocaine and heroin. Ponyboy’s story is emblematic of the juvenile delinquency epidemic that has swept America in recent decades – an epidemic that has claimed the lives of thousands of young people like him.
The problem begins with parenting
stay gold ponyboy father was Absent Father No More – a term used to describe fathers who are not physically present in their children’s lives. This lack of responsibility contributes to a cycle of poverty and violence that plagues many disadvantaged communities throughout America. In fact, one study found that children born to unmarried mothers are almost three times as likely to be incarcerated as those born to married parents. And according to data compiled by The National Center on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, incarceration rates for black boys have quadrupled since 1980 – while rates for white
The Tempest of stay gold ponyboy
The Tempest is a play by William Shakespeare. The play tells the story of Prospero, a warlock who curses the island of Caliban in revenge for his usurped throne, and Miranda, a beautiful woman who befriends Caliban.
Prospero’s magic allows him to control the weather and waves, but he also requires sunlight to maintain his power. One day, while he and Miranda are on the island, a fierce storm knocks out the power. Prospero is forced to use his magic to restore order to the seas. In doing so, he loses his sunlight, which weakens him greatly.
Miranda finds him and helps him recover by keeping vigil over him during the day and lending him her voice and spirit throughout the night so that he may rest. As Prospero recovers his strength, he begins to see Miranda in a new light – as someone who can help him regain his power.
One day, as they sit together in silence under the stars, Prospero finally confesses his love for her. Miranda is surprised – she had never thought of Prospero in that way before. But she still doesn’t want to touch or kiss him because she’s afraid it would break his enchantment.
Finally free from his curse and with Miranda’s blessing, Prospero returns to court as an enlightened king who has learned about true love.
Birth of a Stay Gold ponyboy
When I was growing up in the early 1990s, there was one thing that all of my friends and I could agree on: We loved the music of Goldfinger. Whether it was our older siblings playing the album at high volume or jamming out to the hit singles in our parents’ cars, we were hooked.
It’s ironic then, that as a teenager I became an outspoken critic of mainstream pop culture. I rebelled against anything that wasn’t punk rock or alternative, developing a deep appreciation for underground music. But when it came to Goldfinger, I couldn’t help but be nostalgic for those days when everything was possible.
In recent years, however, something strange has happened. The songs from Goldfinger have started creeping back into my life – not just as background music, but as something I actively seek out and listen to. It seems like over the past few decades, the band’s message of staying true to yourself and your beliefs has struck a chord with a wider audience than ever before.
This new movement is aptly named Stay Gold ponyboy and it owes its origins to one man: myself. In 2015, I published my first book chronicling my journey from punk rocker to indie iconoclast – a story titled “Ponyboy”. In it, I discuss how Goldfinger helped me find my voice and connect with fans on a deeper level than anything else ever had before.
The response to Ponyboy was overwhelming – so much so
Stay Gold Ponyboy is the story of my life told through the lens of my photography. It tells the story of a small-town boy who grows up to be a photographer and documentarian, following his passions with all he has. Through images and words, it examines both the beauty and struggles of growing up in rural America during the 1970s and 1980s. I hope you take the time to read this book; it was a long journey to write and publish it, and I could use your feedback along the way.
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