The Day My Purple Sky Turned Gray
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On the morning of April 21, 2016, I was standing in LensCrafters when my phone rang. It was my sister.
Solemnly, she asked, “Have you heard?”
Browsing through the frames, I said, “Heard what?”
“Princess is dead.” She spoke so hurriedly that each word ran into the next.
“Princess is dead.”
“Whose dog is that? I don’t know nobody with a dog named Princess.”
“No, no, no.” Then she slowed down. “Prince. Is. Dead.”
At that moment, I collapsed into a seat in the waiting area, looking and listening for some type of confirmation of this, for now, gossip. There was not one Black sales associate in the store that day, but if this is true—if Prince is really dead, then everybody would know. I walked to the desk where I was greeted by the lone sales associate. Immediately, she asked how she could help me, but I interjected without pause, “Is Prince dead?”
She replied, “Who?”
I turned around and left the store immediately. By the time I got to my car, I had received several texts. I went to...