Monday, April 30, 2007

So it appears as if I'll get my first taste of being a single father for an extended period of time. Circumstances have come up which will allow me to have young Carlton for part of May, the month of June, and a bit of July. Knowing who I am dealing, this is all tentative, and a big part of me will believe it when I see it. But for now, i'm going through all the things that a father needs to go through. I'm looking for camps, day care, putting extra money aside, making sure my porn, Playboys and other perverted things are stowed away in a safe place and all that. My custody case is now postponed a bit, but this is actually going to help me out. I know I continue to be vague about that part of my life, but I have to. I'd hate for this blog to be used against me..That would be tragic..

Speaking of which, that happened to one of my favorite authors, Mr. John Wideman. He wrote a book entitled, "Brothers and Keepers", which was about his relationship with his brother, who came to him as he was running for the law, and eventually went to jail. Fast forward a few years later, John's son was ALSO convicted of murder, and during the trail, attorneys used the book "Brothers and Keepers" against John Wideman as evidence that this type of behavior had something to do with the family. It was devastating for Wideman, not to mention both his brother and his son are doing life sentences. So I cannot imagine my writing on any level being used for evil, let alone to imprison my son that I helped create. That is rough.

I heard another blogger say that it is dishonest to have a blog of your thoughts, and then to censor what you do and do not say, and to some degree I agree. But I have some thoughts, issues and situations that I just don't have the heart to write down and expose to everyone yet. One, I more thin skinned than I let on, and I think if I read something wrong, my temper (even though its improved) would get the best of me. Two, there are some issues swimming around in my head, that I'm just not ready to deal with myself, let alone share it with the world. And three, the longer I hold them in, the better chance there is for like a 34 page blog when I let it all out emotions and all..I had a friend tell me yesterday that my cynicism and mean spirited behavior just means that i'm hiding something that i'm not ready to deal with, and that is exactly true. My therapist will get to hear this stuff, and eventually my blog will reflect that. Not yet though.

My next article will be on how I miss Michael Jordan..I came to that decision about 5 minutes ago. I will work on it now.

i feel like i may have committed some typos in this entry. guess who doesn't care?

Money Don't Matter - Prince

Sunday, April 29, 2007

I didn't quite cry, but I was very sad to see the Miami Heat lose their series today . I can't say I'm necessarily a Miami Heat fan, but I've always been a Shaquille O'Neal fan since '92. I hated to see his season, and possibly his career be ended that way. I don't feel quite as bad for Dwyane Wade. He's very young and he will have the opportunity to win many more playoff series in the future. But Shaq is in the twilight of his fantastic career, and I'm quite sure he has to be wondering if it is worth it to continue. Is it worth it to basically come back as a role player..we shall see. It is funny to me how in basketball years Shaq is considered old at 35, but in "real" life that is extremely young. Shaq's net worth is rumored to be almost $250 million, so he definitely won't have to work if he doesn't want to, so it will be interesting to see what he does..assuming he retires of course.

I forgot to mention an uncomfortable event I witnessed on the train on Thursday afternoon. It was crowded as it always is, but on this particular evening, I was standing on the train next to a young woman. I think she was around 18 years old, she had on a plaid school girl skirt, no stockings, and a top that had her navel and cleavage exposed. She was a pretty girl, but clearly she was young, and I could tell this by the way she was standing. There were about 5 men all around this woman, and I just happened to be standing next to her. I did notice her, and then i went back to my magazine(not Playboy). Occasionally, I would look up and I noticed all of these men just staring..not even trying to mask the fact that they were intrigued. I can only imagine the type of nasty, perverted thoughts that were possibly going through their heads. But I know the fantasy of being with a 16-17 year old girl is frequent with men. I read about it magazines, I see it in adult movies, and sometimes I hear folks talking about it(not R Kelly though). I have a flight attendant fantasy, a 3 some fantasy, a teacher fantasy, and even a WNBA fantasy(one day i'll embellish on that), but I aint NEVER thought of being with a 16 year old in my adult life. I've dealt with two virgins in my life, and even that had me a bit squeamish..only a bit, I still did the do...but again, never have I wanted someone under aged. I'll admit it is sometimes hard to recognize a young girl, but not impossible.

All that being said, I'd like to have some sex now..

Saturday, April 28, 2007

-Is it really so bad that 5 of my crushes are non-black? I mean really..I'd like an explanation of why one of my anonymous readers is disappointed.

-Yes it is the weekend, and I'm not really inspired to right in the normal format I normally do, I hope that's not too disappointing

-My beloved Washington Wizards are playing hard this series, and this afternoon was no different. They played hard, they pushed Lebron and the Cavs, and the "role" players have actually stepped up to make this a competitive series, but in the end they came up just short..again. It looks as if they are going to get swept. But they can find encouragement in the fact that next year, they will better, stronger, faster...

-I'm on my way to a club..something I normally don't do. But after last weekend of me staying in the house, playing the part of Hermit Man, I figured it wouldn't be bad for me to step out and get out there

-There have been new developments in my case with my usual I can't go into detail, but it is VERY promising..this may be a damn good summer after all

-when I made my top 10 list of women I have crushes on, Beyonce didn't make the cut. after seeing this perhaps I should reconsider.

-The NFL draft is long and boring, but I sure did watch 80% of it today. the sad thing is, half of the players picked today will suck, the half of the ones who won't suck, will become stars for another team, not the one that drafted them. All this hype, all this network coverage is a bit much. But i'm a junkie, so I watch..i guess i'm a slave to the sports coverage.

-that's it for now, i'll be back tomorrow with more

Friday, April 27, 2007

So the other day, one my friends was talking about how she has had almost a 15 year crush on Chris Webber.. She mentioned that she was watching tv one time while during her homework, he appeared on screen, and then BOOM she fell in love. Well that got me thinking..who are my crushes, past and present. Well boys and girls, allow to me introduce them to you..

10)Jenna Elfman- During the few times that I watched Dharma and Greg, I was always taken by Jenna's subtle sexiness. She wasn't overly pretty or physical overbearing, but her character on that show led me to believe that she was sexy. Then i saw the movie Keeping the Faith, and I thought the same thing..and for my racist readers yeah she's white so what.

9)Janeane Garofalo- This has less to do with looks and more to do with sense of humor and attitude. I LOVE the way she is in movies, on political shows and in print interviews. she's smart, but she's not afraid to mix it up at all. She's the kind of woman I could talk to for hours at a time, and that my friends is sexy.

8)Wanda Sykes- I have always had a thing for older woman with big breasts, and Wanda falls right into that category. Plus she went to Hampton, she's funny, and smart too.

7) Elizabeth Shue- The movie Leaving Las Vegas made me appreciate her. I know she played a hooker in that movie, but I found her to be very attractive and very sexy. She has that look of innocence about her, but I don't really believe that for one minute. I think she is money and she is ready to party

6) Pam Grier-Age is finally catching up to her, but in her heyday, Pam Grier was THE black female sex symbol of the 70s. She was confident, she had an incredible body, and she was one of the few women who had consistent leading roles in the yes they were exploitation movies, but still, she made her mark. She dated Richard Pryor, Kareem Abdul Jabbar and others, but none of them could tie her down..literally. I can honestly say that I would just want to give her about 3 good hours of getting-to-know-you time with my genatalia..ok maybe about 5. If she were younger, she'd be higher up.

5)Julia-Louis Dreyfuss-aka Elaine from Seinfeld. As Jerry himself put it in one episdoe, she's a man's woman, who doesn't have a lot of friends. and yes this is based just on her tv character, but hey it seems real. I do find Julia attractive, but I think its Elaine i'm really crushing on. Elaine had lots of sex, lots of dates, and again had a good sense of humor.

4)Serena Williams-She EASILY has the best ass on this list, she's the best athlete, despite what many jealous, hating women say, she is cute, and she's rich. i'd make her my wife, but steady sex wouldn't be a bad consolation prize.

3)Kelis-long before her marriage to Nas, long before she was Bossy, and way before the milkshake, Kelis was my crush. In fact it was 1999, when I took a shine to her. First I saw this video and then I saw this one, and I knew I was in love. She couldnt really sing, but she was cute and she looked way different than every other female act at the time. 2 years later I saw her in concert in DC, and I saw up her skirt, so that cemented it for me.

2)Scarlett Johansson - I have spoken about her at length in this blog. its her pouty lips..her youth, her big breasts, her ass, her acting ability...she's just beautiful.

1)Nia Long - I don't think she'll ever lose this #1 spot. She has a sexy voice, smooth skin, a smile that lights up a room, a sexy walk, a sexy pose, cute hairdo..she has it all, and I ever met her one time, and she looks damn good in person. I would NOT have sex with her..I'd wait her out and get married to her.


Thursday, April 26, 2007

Okay I barely watched the damn democratic presidential debate. I watched for about 30-45 strong minutes, and I then I got bored very quickly. Even though no one was reading off the paper, they may as written out speeches. Personally, I think it is way too early to be debating..instead they should be doing more getting to know you type things, so we know exactly where everyone stands prior to a debate. As it stands right now, I ended up learning about some of these candidates during the debate. Perhaps that's anal of me, but oh well. Some observations:

-joe biden bragging that he owns a shotgun was in poor taste. the fact that he owns it is not a big deal, but damn the Virginia Tech tragedy is barely a week old

-Bill Richardson came off as very rigid and very nervous. he needs to relax a bit, there are 18 more months of this campaigning stuff to go

-hillary clinton does not answer ANY questions..she speaks in riddles and rhymes but at the of her speeches i find myself wanting the last 2 minutes of my life back...i wonder where she got that ability from....

-obama was solid. not good, not bad

-former Alaskan gov Mike Gravel was the only one who actually dared to attack the other candidates, and that was refereshing. But to me he was one more animated response away from pulling a howard dean. that's a bit too creepy

Of course all of the candidates criticized Iraq and said the things that they would do when in office. But they fail to realize that its easy to sit and talk jive about what you're GONNA do, but will you follow through? And will Bush even put any of these candidates in position to succeed. These questions can't be answered right now. So again the debate is pointless right now..let's wait until later on this year when we know more.

That's my take on the debate. dont let the networks try to fool you into making it more than it really was a stroke your own dick session...and yes i said dick in my opposed to a box

now let me give a disclaimer..i DO vote, and i do care about who runs this country next year because as i said earlier, this election is the biggest one of my lifetime. But i find it hard to care in April of a non election back to my basketball game
There are some parallels to be drawn between my beloved Washington Wizards and new presidential hopeful, John McCain. If points were given just on effort and intent, both parties would come out victorious. The Wizards, despite missing their best two players, continue to give a solid effort, and continue to come up short. And John McCain, despite all the criticism that he takes for various reasons(we'll get to the later) never loses his cool, or slams anyone, he just methodically plods along quietly speaking up for what he believes in..gotta respect that. Both parties realistically should just give up. The Wizards are going against Lebron James and the Cavs, who everyone(including all the networks) wants to see advance as far as possible, since Lebron is a superstar, and the Wizards have no healthy marketable star right now. John McCain is 70 years age where politicians should be in the twilight of their career(Ronald Reagan not withstanding), but definitely isn't an age where you take on the biggest challenge of your political career in what is arguably the biggest election in over 50 years.

There are also big time flaws here..the Wizards have NO legitimate low post threat, they play minimal to no defense, and the players, even though they play hard, are just not talented enough to beat Cleveland 4 times out of 7 games. Besides Mr. McCain's age, he is having serious troubles raising money(he's excuse is he didn't try enough..really John? You are having effort issues and you want to run for president), he is a big time supporter of the war in Iraq, and he is alienating his own party by not supporting Bush's approach to the September 11th tragedy. The last similarity between the two? The sympathy factor. Everyone feels sorry for Washington because their best two players are hurt, and the assumption is if they were healthy, Washington would go far. But since they aren't, they've been getting a pass for their losses in the media. And McCain is a Vietnam veteran and a cancer survivor(that's like sympathy heaven right there) and I'm quite sure McCain realizes that alone will win over some voters and members of the media.

So, the fate of the Wizards will play out over the next few days, but McCain's fate will be slower and more agonizing, but I'm rooting for both of them..especially McCain because he is a HUGE sports fan. He's spoken out and led commissions against drugs in baseball and reform in boxing, and I respect that, as I respect my beloved Wizards. But there's no way in hell either of them are winning.

Been Caught Stealing - Jane's Addiction
I remember seeing this video as a 15 year old, and it was wild. Even to this day, it is one of the crazier videos you'll ever see. And the song isn't bad either..kind of different, but good.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

I hate to be one of those people who jumps to conclusions based on seeing a little bit of something, as opposed to a full body of work, but man the Miami Heat looked old last night.. Dwyane Wade gets a pass because he is playing hurt with a separated shoulder, but the rest of the team look ancient. Shaquille allowed Ben Wallace to out muscle him, force him into turnovers, and he just made him look tentative. None of the role players, who were so instrumental in helping Miami win a title, did anything of consequence last night. And the bottom line is that the Chicago Bulls are younger, more athletic, and they have many more weapons than the Heat. I could be dead wrong about this, and Miami could come back and win the next two games, and eventually the series. But I sincerely doubt that. And I REALLY want to see The Daddy get another title before he retires, but I just don't see it happening. I could write much more about this subject, but I don't want Miami to come back and win, and then I'll be left looking stupid.

In the second game, we saw Shaquille O'Neal's ex teammate, Mr Kobe Bryant, and his Los Angeles Lakers looked ten times worse than Miami. At certain times during the game, it looked like Kobe was pouting, instead of playing hard; however, given the fact that he has scrubs for teammates for the most part, I really don't blame him. And even though Shaquille has had much more success than Kobe since their separation, I know last night they could have used each other. But again, so many people are quick to make assumptions just based on two games and not an entire series, so we shall see.

These basketball games are messing up my sleep patterns man. Last night I was in the bed, on the phone, and getting ready to go to bed since the Lakers were getting their ass kicked. But then I decided I wanted to watch the rest of the game, so I got up out of bed and watched the rest of the game. As a result, I went to bed at 1am for the second consecutive work night. Not to mention, after I watch these games, I feel like I want to go out and play some basketball myself, so I can't even fall asleep right away. This is a vicious cycle man, but it is one that I MUST endure. Last year at this time, I had a girlfriend and I had to compromise a game or two to spend with her. Now she's long gone, and I can get back to my normal behavior, but it is taking a toll on me. I don't want sympathy, I just want my dedication to be celebrated and recognized.

David Halberstam died two days ago, and I feel bad that I have never read any of his books. He's one of those writers who mastered every facet of journalism he tried. And he's also one of those writers that other writers were in awe of, and I kept saying that I was going to read one of his books, and now I can't put it off any longer. Apparently, he died on his way to conduct interviews for a book he was working on, which makes it that much more a way. The flip side to that is this man was 73 years old, and he still had the fire necessary to not only write the book, but conduct his own research as well. At that age, many authors are putting out anthologies of their work, or they are teaching at a university and writing articles here and there, just trying to ride off into the sunset. This man was out and about and still working on a book, and I am so sorry I didn't appreciate his work earlier, but it is certainly not too late. I think I'll start with this one. It is also a reminder to me personally, that I need to be writing constantly, and not resting or claiming i'm too tired.

Leave Me Alone - Michael Jackson

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

As I have mentioned in this blog a couple of times, I now subscribe to Playboy magazine. The knee jerk reactions when I tell folks this range from folks accusing me of being a pervert(yes) to asking me if they can borrow it when I'm done(hell no). The pictures of the women are obviously a plus, but often lost in the shuffle are the wonderful articles in there as well. So far I've read fantastic interviews from Bill Maher,and Steve Nash, I have read a controversial article on immigration, the Chicago mob, and there is a wonderful baseball preview which I've yet to tackle. The interviews in particular are fun to read, because the interviewees actually steer clear of the typical cliched answers they usually give, and then open up a bit more--presumably because they are being interviewed by Playboy. So why do I mention all of this?

I have been carrying around the Playboy issue with the tribute to Anna Nichole Smith in it, for about 3 weeks now. I keep meaning to read it, but I've been out of town, I've been reading other books, and now the playoffs have started, so it has been hard to give it the shine it truly deserves..until today. One of my biggest pet peeves is folks reading over my shoulder on the train, whether I'm sitting down or standing up. They hand out a free newspaper, the regular big name newspapers range from 35-50 cents, and everyone has a damn book they can bring from home, so there's no excuse to read over my shoulder. This woman who was sitting behind me today, didn't seem to grasp that, as she was damn near resting her chin on my shoulder to read my paper. Is this petty of me? Hell yes, but it would have been different if she were sitting back casually glancing, but this was not the case. I went from the Sports, to the Style, to the metro sections, and she was all in. So, instead of moving along to the front page, I decided to break out the elusive Anna Nichole issue, as I felt it was high time that it saw the light of day. I was headed to the aforementioned baseball preview, but before I got to that, I made damn sure I hit the pages with Anna Nichole on them(she was easy on the eyes in her youth), and I noticed thru the mirror that the woman sat back slowly(although if she had been intrigued and kept reading over my shoulder, this blog entry could have gone ENTIRELY different). Now the bad part about this is that the man sitting next to me who had NOT been reading over my shoulder was now heavily intrigued, and began to pick up where the woman left off. But my stop came up, and I was able to get off the train without further incident. Yes you may think that it is a disgusting act for me to be reading that type of magazine on the train, but dammit its 2007(i really don't know what that means).

I should write a letter to Hugh Hefner thanking him for helping me out of a jam.

Fortress Around Your Heart - Sting featuring Branford Marsalis on sax

Monday, April 23, 2007

At one point during Mayweather/De La Hoya 24/7 last night, Floyd Mayweather discussed his father at length. He said that growing up his father rarely showed him real love, but instead showed him that tough love. The real love the son wanted was affection, or time spent together, but instead he got the tough love that involved extra hours in the gym and preparing his son to become a world class boxer. Now that the son is a world class boxer, he still doesn't feel the love from his father, and he also admitted that up until recently, he was scared of his father. So all of this got me to thinking, what's the line between tough love and just being hard on your kids. Do you get your kids to the point where they succeed not necessarily because they want to, but because they fear the reaction of their parents? Or do you pull back a little, try to show your kids consequences of right and wrong, and hope they see it for themselves. I will admit my father was pretty hard on my brother and I, and up until I graduated from college in '96, I was scared of him. Even now, he can flash me that look, and I'll immediately start replaying my last 30 minutes with him to make sure I did nothing wrong. But my father always took time to show my brother and I affection, and he would spend quality time with us every weekend..even when my parents were divorcing, he never stopped. Father/son relationships are very interesting to me, always have been, and as soon as I figure out what about them I want to discuss, I'll put it in a book.

By the way, I highly recommend that every two months or so, you spend the entire weekend in the house like I did this past weekend. I mean sure sports was the driving factor behind it, but so many other things got accomplished. I cooked, I cleaned my apt, I heard my loud ass neighbors playing reggae music (and i STILL don't know what the hell they are saying), I got lots of reading and writing done, and most importantly I am refreshed this fine Monday morning. No sluggishness, no dragging, just lots and lots of energy. I'll be able to enjoy the balmy weather next weekend, and the weekend after that.

3rd Bass - The Gas Face

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Never underestimate the importance of a compliment. It could someone saying you have nice eyes, someone saying you have nice shoes, or in my case someone me an email and complimenting me on my blog. This person didn't even know me, yet he took time out to say he liked my blog, and that goes a long way. I have friends and family who read the blog, and I was appreciate it when they say nice things whether its leaving a comment or emailing me. But when someone from the "outside" does the same, its a beautiful thing. Have I beaten this horse enough? Just last week, this guy in my office had on a nice suit, and i told him about it..of course, every man knows that when you compliment another man, you have to throw a "man", "dog", "champ" or "sport" immediately afterwards to lessen the ghey factor. For example, if a guy said to me, Rashad you look nice today..I would start looking for the rainbow flag(not that anything is wrong with that). But if someone said, man, you like sharp today man, I wouldn't suspect anything. There were two strategically placed "mans"(irony), and the use of the word sharp as opposed to nice. That's powerful complimenting right there. This has gone on way too long.

I started writing this, because I was mad that the Denver Nuggets had allowed the Spurs to take the lead, but while I've been writing, Denver has regained the lead going into halftime. Good times indeed. Speaking of halftime, these halftime interviews of out of breath players needs to stop. These players are sweaty, tired, and some(not all) aren't all that adept at maneuvering through the English language anyway, so why set them up for failure by catching them RIGHT before they go to the locker room. It aint right.

I can't stress this enough..this weekend has been a sports watcher's paradise. Usually, when halftime of a game comes, I have to go get food or call someone, who find something to entertain me for 15 minutes. But today, once halftime came, all I have to do is turn to ESPN, and the Red Sox and Yankees are JUST starting. It's been like this for 3 I know what Viagra must feel like. Now all these sporting events will backfire on me at 9. I definitely have to see the Sopranos, which means i'll be missing the sporting events, but oh well. I know people who use their DVR or on-demand systems to watch the Sopranos on a different day, but I can't do that. Invariably, there is always one jackass on the train or in the office who gives away the complete episode, before I can view it. So i'll be watching it on time, while flipping to sports periodically. I think this will be my last entry of the night, I need to focus man.

Maroon 5 - Makes Me Wonder
My beloved Washington Wizards were not able to defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers today, despite a novel effort. If there are such things as moral victories, they can at least say that they played hard for 3 and a half quarters, despite not having their two biggest stars. Every time they would get within 5 points, I would get excited and start clapping, and then Lebron and the gang would come back and deflate my spirits. Game 2 is on Wednesday, so we'll see what happens. Next, and currently in progress are the Lakers and the super smug Kobe Bryant versus Phoenix Suns. I have real rooting interest in either team, but I want to see a damn good game. Well I take that back, I do have a rooting interest in seeing Kobe fail. I recognize that he's good, but he just comes off as so smug like he knows everything. I also kind of root for Phoenix(that's a hard word to type), because I read this excellent book earlier this year based on their team entitled, "7 Seconds or Less" The behind the scenes nature of that book, makes me feel like I know some of the Phoenix players personally. so basically, i am transfixed to the screen for yet another 2-3 hour span.

My snack game is not too good today, since I depleted all the good stuff yesterday. i'm down to ritz crackers and white cheddar popcorn..those are like 30th and 31th on my list of game day food, but such is life. Nothing can beat yesterday's meatballs which were damn good thanks to a friend of mine who told me to put jelly in my barbecue sauce...BRILLIANT!

and that person who commented in my blog today was absolutely right, you don't impress a one night stand with impress a first night stand with breakfast..its been so long i have forgotten the "rules"...

back to the games..but before I go, during that Imus scandal last week when rap music was dragged through the mud, someone should have pulled this clip out. it was right on time..
There needs to be some type of service that delivers breakfast 7 days a week, but especially on the weekends. Every time I wake up on Saturday and Sunday, I start thinking about this in detail. They should start delivering at 6am, and it should run to about 1pm, for those folks who like to sleep late for various reasons. No one really wants to cook breakfast(except for those people who are trying to impress their one night stand), but they definitely want to enjoy it. I'm sure somewhere in this fine country, there is such a service.

So after yesterday's marathon sports watching session, I am back again to tackle Sunday's sporting events. There are four more NBA playoff games today, including one that starts in about 45 minutes, and features my beloved Washington Wizards, who will be lucky to win just one game let alone the series. But I'm a fan, so I'll watch regardless. While all these games are on, i also have to find time to watch the Sopranos at 9, Mayweather/De La Hoya 24/7 at 10:30, and the Yankees/Red Sox at 8. Good times indeed. I may try to keep a diary style blog going today, if I can reel in my attention span.

I was telling my friend this morning, that I was almost tempted to go to church this morning. Whenever a tragedy happens in this country or beyond, I find that the clergy are often times able to put things in such a way, that it makes sense. Plus they give you a bit of inspiration/hope that can get you through the week and beyond. And ultimately, that's ONE of the things that church and the word of God should do. It should inspire you to want to do better and to live right, and yes i'm oversimplifying, but you get my point. But I was lazy, I couldn't get my breakfast delivered, and I decided not to attend church..but I will do the next best thing, and I will call my mother who is a pastor, and have her give me some over-the-phone healing.

i'll be back

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Well I'm halfway through my spectacular sports Saturday, and I'm starting to get a bit sleepy. I just watch the Miami Heat lose game one to the Chicago Bulls. I expected the Bulls to win this game, and they will probably win game 2 as well. Shaq couldn't stay out of foul trouble, and Dwyane Wade waited much too late to take over the game, but I would be very encouraged if I was Miami. They didn't play well much of the game, and they still had a chance to win it all. Game 2 should very interesting. All those people who said the Heat were too old to repeat, really need to pay attention just a bit more. They basically ask Shaq to start strong, they ask the reserves to maintain Shaq's momentum, and then they tell Wade to win it for them in the closing minutes. Of course there are games when they switch up the formula, but for the most part this is what happens.

While I was trying to watch the basketball game, I kept sneaking to watch the Red Sox/Yankee game on Fox. It is a bit early in the baseball season for this game to any real significance, but the games are definitely intense and fun to watch. Plus I openly hate on A-Rod both out loud and in my head, so these games give me more ammunition. I have about 90 minutes until the nba playoffs resume, so I think i'll jump rope or something, so I won't feel like a complete lazy bum.

Everybody who reads this damn blog knows that I live and breathe sports, so I have no clue why these same people call, text, and email me about getting out and enjoying this weather. They act like today is the only nice Saturday left, and after today, the rains and Ark cometh. I am totally happy sitting in front of this damn tv, and soaking up the sports. On days like this, i'm glad I live alone, because i'll be damned if I have to justify my sports addiction. And when I do get married, my wife, my married couple friends, my kids(well maybe not kids) will have to understand this, and if they don't, they are just going to have to suck on it and like it.

i think i'm going call Dennis Haysbert, and ask him to narrate my every move..and every now and then I want him to say, "That's Allstate's stand" just for the hell of it.
My weekend blog entries tend to be a bit more scatterbrained, and that's because I am usually doing too many damn things at once, and today is no different. Right now I am listening to this song, I just finished reading this blog (more on this later), and I am in the midst of watching the first round of the NBA playoffs...specifically i'm watching this fantastic match up of New Jersey vs Toronto. Vince Carter gets the chance to eliminate the team that drafted him back in '98. So as you can see I am once again on sensory overload and i'm loving every minute of it. I mean sure it is about 80 degrees and beautiful outside, and I probably should be out there enjoying the weather. But I have no regrets. I currently drinking cranberry(pronounced cranburry) juice, I'm eating meatballs, I'm downloading music and dirty movies, and life is good. If I had a camera, I'd tape this whole thing and send it to all of the major news think they would air it as much as they are airing that OTHER movie..I sincerely doubt it.

Questlove's blogs(see above) are the oddest, most entertaining combination of words that you will ever read. He has random references, humor, a vast array of musical knowledge, and he breaks every rule in English language, yet I am always drawn to them. And then sometimes he does a video blog, and even those are just as compelling. He's my second favorite blogger behind my main man Bill Simmons. When I make recommendations to you people, do you actually follow thru? or do you just say yeah that's nice and keep it moving? i'm curious

i'll be back throughout the day and weekend writing about mainly sports but who knows what else..

Friday, April 20, 2007

I'm mad that Greg Oden chose not to listen to my great advice and stay in college. I literally was angry when I saw that he has decided to go pro, although I certainly understand his decision. It is just so rare when a player with talent actually stays in school for more than a year or two. But that's just my selfish side speaking.

I went out again last night to my boy Brandon's birthday party, and I had a pretty good time. Lots of beautiful people, good music, not too much drinking on my part, and plenty of people who I know both past and present. Going out two nights in a row, is definitely not a wise thing for me anymore. I am tired, and I feel like I have not recovered from my trip to Atlanta. As a result, this blog entry WILL be short and it WILL suck tremendously.

Tomorrow the NBA playoffs start. The games start at 12:30, and they will be showing games until 10pm, and I will watch and write about every single of them. It's most wonderful time of the year. Yes the weather will be nice, but I won't enjoy it..playoffs take top priority.

Superwoman(live)- Stevie Wonder

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Every now and then, something funny happens on my way to work, and it makes the whole day go smooth and easy. Just now, as I walking into my building, one of the maintenance men was spraying the sidewalk with water as he does every morning. In the midst of doing this, an attractive woman with a rather short skirt walked by. She had a swagger about her, and she also had a hint of cleavage showing as well. Mr. Maintenance Man got a glimpse of this woman, and immediately lost control of his water hose, and not only sprayed an innocent man(with water), but he also sprayed himself. I laughed in his face, I laughed at the dude who got sprayed, and I'm still chuckling as I type this blog. As I've said before ,the streets of DC are a comedic gold mine. I'm just glad I have a front row seat to it all.

So last night, I went to this vegan spot called Vegetate, and it was my intent to write a review, and by golly I will do my best to write one--although I must admit what I write here in my blog, won't be as in detail as what I submit to the newspaper. Anyway, I walked in the spot about 6:30, and immediately, I was met by a mixed woman with nice glasses and a nicer smile. She directed me upstairs to the happy hour area, but before she did, I was sure to tell her that I had read about this restaurant/lounge in the weekend section of Friday's paper, and I was so inspired that I decided to pay a visit to her establishment. She smiled from ear to ear, and said that she wondered whether that article was going to improve business, and she was glad I had been inspired. She also touched me at this point, which caught me a bit of guard, but perhaps that was part of her vegan charm..who knows. Once I got upstairs, I noticed that it was still early, and there really weren't any patrons there yet. The people there were all white, all women, and they all appeared to be in their early 20s. When I walked into the spot, they all turned around, and immediately I pulled my genitalia out(just kidding), but I did nod hello and I sat down. I told the bartender the exact same story of how I found out about the restaurant that I told the hostess, and she smiled and said welcome. I asked her if I get a free drink, and she blew me off(not literally) and gave me the glass of Sauvignon blanc I requested.

The atmosphere in this place was pretty damn cool. An androgynous looking DJ was spinning on the turntables, the place was dimly lit, and scented candles filled up the entire room. There was one floor designated for people who were there to eat and eat only. The second floor had about 12 tables, and 20 barstools (I could be off by about 10) that were all setup for the happy hour atmosphere. And then there was another room that I suspect was the dancefloor area, which contained a small spot for the aforementioned DJ, and then a dancefloor, where I saw rhythmically challenged white and black people dance to great hip hop music. The third floor, from what I was told, is for VIP Vegans who make reservations in advance. I was very impressed with that, but overall I was bored out of my mind. My attempts to make small talk with people there were met with cold indifference, so I called up a variety of friends to make small talk with them, all while drinking half glass after half glass of Sauvignon blanc(for some reason they wouldn't pour me an entire glass). Before I knew it, the place was jammed packed and jelly tight(a southern expression). There were about 30 white women, 3 black people(who were in love with white women and seemingly had the ghey) and about 15 white men, half of who had they ghey as well. I was clearly out of place, and when I made eye contact with some of these folks, they seemed to confirm my suspicion. At one point, I saw this dude drinking some beer that I had never seen before, and I asked him what it was..He looked at me as if I had an impressive display of boogers in my nose, and then he told me what the drink was, where it originated, and what stores I could purchase it in which blew my mind, and of course I dont remember the specifics. This quite possibly was the highlight of the evening.

Soon after this, I left out of there, and when I did, I noticed that the downstairs restaurant area was PACKED with people who were dining. This area seemed to be a bit more normal than the happy hour area. There were attractive men and women eating, talking and drinking, and immediately I was wishing that I had based my review on this part of the restaurant, but at that point I was more than tipsy and I couldn't evaluate the situation properly. I will say this though, the vegetarian sliders that I ate were absolutely on point. They were a dollar each, and I think I ate about 6 of them, and I didn't feel full at all, which did nothing for my tipsy state...I need to learn how to make them.

I left Vegetate, and went to another spot I like to attend in Adams Morgan called the Common Share. I went in there to see what was going on in the day of sports, and to have a drink or two. I was only in there about 20 minutes, but while in there, I saw an old friend and her girlfriend at the bar, which just added to the jovial time I was already having. And as an added bonus, they just happened to be sitting next to a dude who went to Hampton, but talked my ear off as if I was going to be giving him some later. At one point I looked at him, and I was thinking, man I am not gay, I will not give you any so please shut the hell up..but he didn't. Anyway, I finished my drink (Jack Daniels), hugged my friends, and I rolled out and headed home. Quite an evening indeed.

So to recapitulate, if you come to DC, I suggest to go to Vegetate and bring your straight friends who can dance, so that you can even out the whole ghey demographic and you can show folks how to boogie properly. And eat plenty of vegan sliders..

And yes I have my first hangover since New Year's Day.

If I Had A Chance - Eric Roberson

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Last night around 11:45pm I heard gunshots outside my window. This is not the first time I've ever heard gunshots, this isn't even the first time I have heard gunshots outside a place where I live(whether its been DC or MD), but given all that's been in the news during the past 48 hours or so, this set of gunshots had me standing at attention. I kept thinking about those students who actually saw the VT gunman, and spoke of how they reacted once they heard the shots. Then I thought about what would happen if a shootout occurred outside my window while I was sleeping, and bullets got me in my sleep. And then I thought about going to the window to see what was going on, but I know that would have been a dumb move. And then finally I said to myself, man it isn't quite my time to go, so let me stop worrying and go to sleep. Of course this thought process took place in a matter of 10 minutes while I was on the phone, but it felt like an eternity. I don't even live in what would be considered a risque neighborhood either, but in this day and age that really doesn't mean much. Maybe I should have know when I saw that shopping cart near my house, that doom and gloom wasn't far off.

I consider myself a perceptive fellow for the most part. So if I walk past someones desk or even if I see someone on the street, and I get the sense that they aren't interesting in talking or they don't have a whole lot to say, I keep it moving. This goes for new people I may meet, people I may know and run into on the street, or people who I work with. These aren't difficult things to diagnose. If someone gives you minimal eye contact, if they keep staring at their computer or cellphone, or if they keep walking while you're trying to talk, you can pretty much chalk that up to being blown off, and not in the good way. For some reason though, people dont seem to pick up on my avoidance tactics. For example, the woman at my job who looks like Clinton Portis came in my office and said good morning, and I returned the favor and then immediately went back to typing my blog. But did it stop there? Oh no no no..then she commented on how I looked tired(see the gunshot story), then she commented on how tired she was, and then it moved to i need a vacation, then on to I need to hit the lottery, and all the while I wasn't even look at her. She was in the middle of her rant about the lottery, and threw out an obligatory, "yeah the lottery's good", and she didn't even pick up on the sarcasm and proceeded to go on for a good five minutes. Friendly people at work are way overrated. Just do your job, get ahead when you can, kiss your bosses ass, keep your office clean, keep the meetings,gossip, and inappropriate sexual behavior to a minimum, update your resume every now and then, and leave me the hell alone. It isn't all that difficult.

If you ever get the chance, and you have HBO, please watch Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel. It is an excellent show that approaches sports in a 60 minutes type fashion. And the shows are done in a way, that even non-sports fans can appreciate what's going on and get something out of it. I have coerced a few non sports fans to watch it, and they enjoy the show a great deal. Plus, despite what you may think of Bryant Gumbel, he is THE best sports journalist out there in my opinion. For 30 plus years he has done everything in journalism. He's run a underground, pro black newspaper, he's covered baseball, football, basketball, the Olympics, basketball, he's hosted morning shows, and now he primarily does this show on HBO. Plus he's not afraid to make someone uncomfortable in an interview, which I appreciate as a viewer. So watch the show when it comes on, or if you have on-demand watch an episode or two. And no he's not paying me, I just feel strongly about this show and thought I'd share.

Leo Sayer - Magdalena
Gangstarr- Precisely the Right Rhymes

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

During my first week at Hampton University, there were gunshots fired at the Burger King located at the edge of campus. I remember the reactions to the gunshots varied from those who ran towards the commotion to see what was going on, to those who just ran as fast as they could away from the action. I remember hearing some folks say the reason they came to a university that was semi-isolated like Hampton, was to escape the violence of their hometowns. Others like me, were just surprised(and at 17 very naive) that this would take place on college campus. I had spent most of my teenage years in Potomac, MD, which was close to DC, but not close enough for me to see any violence up close and personal. Stories of violence would lead the local news almost every night, but my parents purposely kept me as sheltered as they could. For this reason, I hoped that the story of these gunshots going off did not reach my parents, because I knew they would worry, and how could they not. You JUST sent you child off to be away from home for an extended period of time for the FIRST time, and during that FIRST week your biggest fear as a parent comes true: something happens that you really cannot control. And that is the saddest part about what happened yesterday at Virginia Tech. Colleges are allegedly supposed to be controlled environments, so when something happens like it did yesterday, it is surprising and then you realize just how vulnerable that atmosphere really is.

I'm in a weird place right(or as my friend dana said, a dark place) now man, and I really cannot describe it. I feel like I'm on the brink of some time type of breakthrough, but I just haven't pushed myself enough to get there. Maybe its the weather, maybe its because I haven't sat still during a weekend in a while, maybe its because I'm not getting sex when I want it, but more than likely, its because I am not pushing myself like I should. So just like I did a few weeks back, when I wrote that article on a whim, I'm going to have to push myself here to do something. One thing I am going to do is write a review of a nightclub/lounge. I read about this spot called Vegetate in the weekend section of the Washington Post, and I thought to myself, that sounds cool. It is vegetarian restaurant that also serves liquor, beer and wine. So I will march on down there during happy hour, write down my observations, and then submit it somewhere local. Maybe that will serve as yet another catalyst.

Everyday It Rains - Mary J

Monday, April 16, 2007

While getting dressed this morning, I thought of about 4 or 5 excuses I could come up as reasons why I wasn't going to make it in for work. I've missed more days than usual here recently between me travelling and doing other personal things, so I couldn't just do the normal "I'm sick" routine. I thought of saying that my power had gone out, since it is so windy out but then I feared that my power really would go out as payback. So I decided to bring my sleepy ass into work this morning. It really should be a mandatory rule, that if you are out of town the entire weekend, Monday is yours to take off for recovery time. If i were president, I'd pass that law, and bribe everyone, so that they would expedite the process.

One thing I neglected to mention about my weekend. There was a point on Saturday night at my brother's house, when the Bad Boys of Comedy came on TV. This show was built in the same mold as the old Def Comedy Jam, except its not nearly as funny, but it is every bit of raunchy. I was talking to someone and listening to this at the same time, it simply was not funny. No one was building and setting up jokes the way good comedians normally do, it was just all about unfunny one liners and playing to the same stereotypes(black vs white people, growing up poor, and dating). My point here is that there were many, many offensive things uttered during some of these routines, and it was tough to listen to given all the discussions that were had last week. Good comedians can play on stereotypes in a way that makes you think, but clearly these high caliber comedians were not on HBO on this particular night. I even looked at my brother one time and mentioned this to him, and he was already thinking it. Sports should have on tv anyway, but that's what happens when the remote is out of my sight.

That is all for now, again i am tired, and incredibly cranky.

Come Back To Me-Janet Jackson

Sunday, April 15, 2007

So I spent the majority of my evening with my brother, his wife and their friends. They decided to throw a house party, and I must admit I had a lot of fun. Of course there were moments when I felt old, like when folks were looking at me funny for drinking wine and not liquor; or when I heard people talking about how young they were when the Remember the Time video came out, but there were folks my age sprinkled in there as well, so I didn’t feel too badly. I must say though it was kind of cool to see all of these friends that Jamal and his wife had. None of his other friends were married, but it didn’t matter because everyone had a great time. One of their jackass friends woke up my nephew just because they wanted to play with him, so I think that was the only misstep of the night. But even that gave me the opportunity to put the little on in bed and to sleep. He resisted at first, but eventually he settled down, and went to sleep.

This weekend has been very interesting, because I have gotten the chance to see how the other half lives up close. Everything is shared in their household, any decision that is made has to be discussed even if its for 2 minutes. The friends that they have are friends of them as a couple, and there are no games, no wondering if the other person is really into them, there’s just love. Of course they cynic in me can say things are still new, but I’m not going to go there. Right now they have their minor spats, but for the most part they are happy young couple. And hell yes I’m biased. Now, all that being said, I am still not ready to be married. Not quite yet. I may be lonely at times, but I simply am not ready for that level of 24 hour sacrifice and commitment. It’ll happen though.

Oh and all of Jamal’s wife friends were fine. I mean they were real good looking, and they treated me nicely because I was Jamal’s brother. I guarantee if any of them saw me on the street, that would treat me with nothing but contempt and hate…but it was nice looking at them all.

I am ready to go back home now to my mundane life. The Sunday night baseball game on ESPN will feature a tribute to Jackie Robinson, so I can’t wait to see that. The Sopranos comes on at 9pm, and then after that HBO is doing a preview to the big Mayweather/De La Hoya fight coming up. It may not be as glamorous as a marriage and putting a child to sleep, but I’ll take it.

I’m so tired right now, I don’t know I am up for my usual airport reports…we’ll see though.

The Verve-Bittersweet Symphony

Saturday, April 14, 2007

I finally got the opportunity to meet my nephew Nazir yesterday, and it was quite an experience. When I walked in the house, he was in the process of getting fed, so it was difficult for him to make even a little eye contact. But at one point he stopped eating, and looked me up and down. I could see the momentary confusion in his eyes when he looked at me, the my brother, then me again, so reassured him that Jamal was indeed his father and not me. After he eat, his mother put him on his blanket on the floor, and then she went upstairs, leaving he and I alone for about 20 minutes. I crawled on the floor with the young fella, and I said allow myself, to introduce myself. I told him who I was, that I would be around for a long time, and that it was a pleasure making his acquaintance. He looked me dead in the eye for about 10 minutes, then he starting moving around trying to escape the safe confines of the blanket. He would grab the blanket, wiggle his around a bit, but he really wasn't going anywhere, and I found that quite amusing. So then I got tired of watching his ass struggle, so I picked up him up and bounced him around, and we walked and talked. It took me back to 10 years ago, when I used to do this with my son. Thank god i'm done..that's not a reflection on my nephew at all either. Its a reflection of the amount of time and effort it takes to raise a young child especially. Although I am continually told I shouldn't give up, I sincerely doubt it will happen.

I also marveled at how cute and effective my brother and his wife are..this is a side of my brother I rarely saw before..there was compromise, love and affection, and all that good stuff in marriages. I didn't try to picture myself in their shoes or any of that stuff, I just appreciate seeing them. As i am writing this, I hear the baby crying downstairs, so his uncle will come to the rescue..

Friday, April 13, 2007

Some airport and on-the-way to the airport observations at 12:49:

-During my walk to the train station, a man of Arab descent ran by me at full speed with a briefcase in his hand. All kinds of thoughts went through my hand, and some of them were downright racist and full of negative stereotypes. I felt bad..this has been a week of racial politics like none other..why couldn't this happen during Black History Month

-I am sitting down, eating quesadillas and drinking margaritas waiting for my flight. This white gentleman is sitting down for 15 minutes, and not one waitress(all white by the way) comes and helps him. He says this is bullshit, and he stomps off. But before he does, I look at him and say, now you know how we feel..and busts out laughing. Rashad Mobley..bridging the racial divide since 1975...

-I look real pretentious right not eating, drinking and laptopping(a new word)..and I don't care one bit. I'm the New Negro Alain Locke spoke of...or at least I am in my head

-i am supposed to be writing an article about the importance of men taking time to regroup and get over someone before jumping to another relationship. Men jump from person to person without ever getting over the past, and I know this because I have had that market cornered for a good 8 years. but i can't seem to write it..I've started and stopped about 5 times. I wonder why that is...

that is all for now
I was getting ready to get in the shower to prepare for my journey today, and then I decided to type a shorty entry for the day. So, if you'd like a TMI-type of visual, I am sitting buck naked in my living room, while I type this. Today, I am headed to Atlanta, Georgia, to complete the trip that I originally tried to do a few weeks back, until the mystery March Madness snowstorm foiled my plans. So at 2 today, I will try again to head down there. This gives me yet another chance to sit in the airport, and laugh and observe people while typing it all in my blog. Of course, this will also give me a chance to see my brother, sister-in-law, and most importantly my nephew. While I'm alone with with my 5 month old nephew, we will have a talk about the world, his role in it, and why women are beautiful. It should be quite delightful. So for right now, that is all I have to type. But once I hit the airport, the games will resume

Barry White - Playing Your Game Baby

Thursday, April 12, 2007

As I watched the three kids from the Duke lacrosse team give their press conference yesterday, I kept thinking to myself, man it HAS to suck being them right about now--and I felt badly for them. Not quite as bad as I did when I finally saw the Rutgers women, but close. Of course these dudes were drinking illegally, and they had hired strippers, but I know plenty of people in college who did the same. They just didn't get caught. And I can't sit here and say that I don't think that while drunk, these kids didn't let a racist/sexist slur slip out in the process, but again that's my own speculation, I can't prove that a bit. But for a man, to be accused of rape, then to be absolved of all guilt, only to have that public perception stick can be devastating. If you add that these kids lost their scholarships, and now will have that stigma on them is rough. If I were a CEO, would I want to hire these dudes, who while found to be innocent, might bring unwanted press and attention to my company? I don't know. I hope these kids can move on in their life..and this is just another example of how race has us jacked up in this country. There have been so many instances (Emmett Till) when white men have wronged black folks, and have gotten away with it. So when a scenario of rich white kids and a black stripper is presented, its just too good to dismiss. Even as I write this paragraph, I feel like a sellout to some degree, but I really shouldn't.

But just as all this attention is being placed on these Duke kids, someone needs to reach out to that woman who accused them of rape too. There are probably some issues going on within her, and clearly no one really understands it. Plus, SOMETHING happened that night, and her story and feelings shouldnt just be thrown under the bus.

So I designated this morning, as my return to running 3 miles at 5am. And right on cue, it was POURING rain when I got out there, and I know I run the risk of catching a cold and all that, but man was it fun. I was so busy enjoying the rain and the puddles, that I didn't even notice that my thighs were burning and I was way out of shape. I actually found myself smiling at one point. So my advice to you kids, is to run or play in the rain the next time you get an opportunity. It is fun and it wash all your troubles away.

Three women I know, are in the midst of some type of breakup. One, had a "special" relationship with her friend, abruptly ended when the guy found someone he wanted to be with, as opposed to just have sex with. The second woman is at a crossroads with her man, and all they do is fight, occasionally have sex, and then fight again. And the last woman thought she was going to work a problem out with her man, only to have him break it off abruptly. As I listen and talk to these women, I realize that in the past year, I have done ALL of those things, but you never really understand the other side until you remove yourself from the situations. I don't have the answers here, I just know that this is the reason female friends come in handy. Its like watching a DVD, and then clicking on the special features and interviews to see what's going on behind the scenes. I possibly could figure those things out on my own, but it sure helps to have some educated insight. I hope they all view me in the same light..

My Soul's Not For Sale - Raheem Devaughn featuring Jazzy Jeff

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

This morning, I walked past a group of birds that were huddled around some sticks and grass, that they were presumably trying to gather for their respective nests. As I got closer to the birds, they did what birds do in reaction to human footsteps, and they flew away before I could say hello. Sometimes I wish I could reach out to the birds, and say look guys, I'm not going to hurt, eat or touch you. I am just on my way to work, and you all can go on about your business. In fact, you all can do what humans do when they are driving, and they want folks to go can just roll down your window(of course this analogy is flawed), stick your hand or claw out, and motion for me to go past you. Same thing with squirrels by the way..when the squirrels are running around trying to harvest their nuts, I wish they would continue to do just that, instead of running up and in a tree and across dangerous power lines just to escape me. It's almost offensive for them to run away without saying hello. I'm not asking for them to treat me as well as they treat Dr. Dolittle..I just want a little respect.

So the last time I talked to my son, he mentioned that his new favorite show was That's So Raven. I explained to him that was one of my shows too, and he said Daddy you're too old to watch that show, and then there was an awkward silence. Carlton broke the silence by saying that his favorite character was some dude named Eddie to which I responded by saying, "Who?". But before he could answer, I explained to him that my favorite character was Raven, and immediately he picked up on perverted thoughts, and he said that I probably just wanted her to be my girlfriend, to which I say why yes..yes I do. I wanted to see have you SEEN Raven Symone lately my son? But I said nothing. But clearly this woman no longer belongs on this kids show...all that curvy goodness is being wasted on little kids who can't appreciate what they are seeing. She needs to do a home video or a soap opera, or a coming of age love story or something. She does NOT need to be the star of my son's favorite TV show.

So I saw the Rutgers team on Sportscenter last night, and I have a few observations. One, these women looked young..I mean real young. It hit me that they are college students, still finding their way. Some looked confident, some looked very shy, and some looked like they were going through that awkward stage college students go through when they are not quite sure how to be in public, and I know because I've been there. They seemed to be most at ease, when their coach, Vivian Stringer, did the talking. Its one thing to hear Imus' comments, but its an entirely different situation, when you see his intended targets, and how vulnerable they really are, not because they are women, but because they are college student athletes who normally fly way under the radar. Now does this mean that when I looked at a few of them I still didn't say, "Damn she looks like a dude"? Of course not, but still I was impressed with their composure, and I felt bad for them, as opposed to being angry with Imus. Ok no more of that story for now.

I have no focus at all today, and I think this scatterbrained writing reflects that.

Stereotype - KAM

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Chris "Ludacris" Bridges has a song that came out about 4 years ago entitled, "Hoes In My Room". In the song, he and Snoop Dogg rap about how disappointed they are that fat and ugly "hoes" keep coming to their room after a they perform a show. The words "hoe" and "bitch" are uttered so many times, that after awhile, you basically go from cringing to being desensitized to it all, all in a matter of about 4 minutes. I must admit when I first heard the song(ironically enough, on my way to my grandmother's funeral), I laughed, became as a rap fan, I have become conditioned and desensitized to the misogyny of it all. Even my condition is conditioned. Eventually I started to cringe when I heard the song, because even though it can be justified as anything from humor to a satirical song, it still comes off as just plain mean and offensive. No one on God's green earth called for Ludacris to stop making music, or to give up rapping for two weeks, and Al Sharpton damn sure didn't get up in arms and ask him to come on the show, and the white men who print, distribute and profit from Ludacris' CD didn't release a statement saying how shocked and awed they were at his word. Why? because he's a rapper...who just so happens to reach a more culturally influential(but less powerful..go figure) segment of the population than a Mr. Don Imus..

Speaking of Imus, I dont think he should be suspended at all, because these things tend to cause the opposite of the desired effect. When he returns, he'll be stronger than ever, and the very day he gets back to the show, he'll make a joke that pokes fun at the situation and people who love him will exhale, and people who can't stand him will move on to the next offender. So as my friend Janelle alluded to yesterday, there is a better solution. Imus should be made to help out the Rutgers Women's Basketball team, and he's what he should be made to do. Since Imus is a wealthy man, he should purchase a substantial number of tickets for the 2007-2008 Rutgers women bball team. And then he should stand somewhere on their fine campus, and hand out tickets for free. He should stand there and be made to greet the women who support the women's game, the kids who enjoy watching, the young girls who aspire to play bball, the parents of the kids on the team, and most importantly, he should be made to speak to and run his hands through the hair of the "nappy headed hoes"--all this while handing out free tickets. I mean sure Imus would probably be laughing and joking with everyone, but you'd best believe it would be a two way street. That way the group he offended would benefit, and Imus, for a day or two, would have humility. Imus is an older man, so giving him sensitivity bullshit classes won't work; suspending or firing him wont' help, because somebody will employ him the day he becomes a free agent; so my solution works.

I hate writing about stuff like this, because on one hand it has beaten to the ground already..but its on my mind and in the news, so I thought it would be mighty black of me to speak on it.

Oh, and go here and read and comment on my article.

You Know I'm No Good - Amy Winehouse and Ghostface

Monday, April 09, 2007

Ok, so here's the article I talked about last week:

I'm open to criticism and love..
Man you all are a tough crowd. I've written some things over the past week or so, that I consider to be very personal and pretty damn good, yet I've heard a lot of bitching and moaning about my blog either via the phone, email, or sometimes directly in the comments. I do appreciate the feedback and all, but damn these things are hit and miss..touch and go if you will

That being said, this entry is going to suck, I already feel it. My eyes are burning, its 30 degrees outside in April, and while I'm on the train I accidentally brushed up against this woman's ass, and she gave me this dirty look as if I did it on purpose. I wanted to say lady, I am a professional pervert, and if I wanted to grab your ass, I certainly would have gotten my money's worth and gone for the jugular. I was just walking, she stopped suddenly and I hit my hand up against her (nice) ass. When you're dealing with a Monday morning, it doesn't take much to throw you in a tailspin, and that is where I am right now.

Since I started writing this blog, I always find some time to write about the brilliance of Tiger Woods, so I suppose its only fair that I speak on his failures a bit as well. Tiger did NOT win the Masters yesterday as so many people expected him to, as he lost of some dude named Zach Johnson who will never win the tournament again in his life. I take it personally when Tiger loses, because I secretly feel like the white men who dominate the control of the sport, take great pride in trying to design a course that Tiger cannot conquer, so when it happens I think they privately rejoice. And you may ask yourself, why would officials design a course with the deliberate intent of keeping Tiger from winning? It's all about ego, and there's plenty to go around in golf, specifically at the exclusive Augusta National Golf Club. Plus Tiger hurt his own chances of winning, with some careless play at the end of each of his three rounds. The fact that I'm even writing about golf on a Monday morning is just sad...

The Sopranos started last night, and with the exception of a funny fighting scene between Bobby and Tony, the episode was incredibly boring. I understand that they have to slowly build up the last season and all, but they could have started off with more of a bang. I plan to write about each of the episodes, but today there just isn't a lot to discuss..except that Tony's masculinity has taken a huge hit since his near death experience last year. We'll see how that plays out. We need to see more of Dania Ramirez who is playing AJ's girlfriend. For you perverted, sex crazed people, you may remember her doing fantastic lesbian scene with Kerry Washington in Spike Lee's movie, "She Hate Me". Now that was a fine piece of acting..

Suddenly the day is looking up

Show Me The Way-Earth Wind and Fire featuring Raphael Saadiq

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Today, or I should say this morning, was all about spending time with my mother. The calendar says Easter, and I know this is the day that Jesus rose from the dead, but for me this day is also synonymous with going to church with my mother. I enjoy the sermons every now and then, but I mainly go because it does her heart good to look to her right and see her first born. Ideally, my brother Jamal would be in the mix too, but he's married with child in Atlanta so he gets a pass(Jamal you owe me one). There is a distinct difference between the time I spend with my dad, and the time I spend with mom. My father is basically an older version of me as I documented yesterday, but my father also is a man at peace with all facets of his life(either that or he is a master of deception) My mother wears her emotions on her sleeve, and she requires a little more from me, and most of the time I oblige. Plus my mother is twice divorced and in her mid 50s, so the loneliness for her is a bit more obvious.

So this morning I woke up at 4:30 am in preparation for the 5:45 am sunrise, Easter service. I don't know how I woke up, and got myself together and I did. The sermon was just ok..ministers must be under tremendous pressure to deliver that master Easter sermon, especially this particular pastor, who said he was preaching at 5:45, 7:45, 11am and possibly at an evening service at Ebenezer Baptist Church. At one point in the sermon, he made a point to say that no other religion has a story involving a main figure dying and resurrecting like Christianity (which I dont know to be true). Then he proceeded to bring his point home by saying that Buddhist, Muslim and the Chinese religions(his terms not mine) could not say they had a resurrection story. I cringed when he said that because that type of speak reminded of conservative christian republicans, who always appear in an election year talking that same jive. You can champion your own religion without downing another..Anyway I'm off topic. The point was, the pastor could have been preaching with strippers on both arms, and I STILL would have been fact the first time I closed my eyes to pray, I barely got them back open, before the strong pull of sleep overtook my eyes.

After church, my mother and I went to have breakfast in the main hall of the church. I wanted to sit alone and isolated with her, she wanted to sit with some younger members of the congregation. So we sat near a nice married couple, and the wife's sister. The couple is newly married and expecting, so the man was looking like he had been drugged, and the wife was running her mouth like Barbara Walters had asked her questions. Then they broke out an ultrasound picture, which is always nice for the couple to look at, but for me, it meant nothing. In fact, the baby looked just like Emmett Till. There was evidence of eyes, nose, etc but it was faint, but I smiled and said oh how nice. Then my mother broke out her pictures of me, my brother and our kids..also included in the pics was a picture of my son's mother. You should have seen the look on every one's face when they saw she was white. At first I felt like I should explain that I no longer date white women, and then I was like man forget that, whose to say that I won't date one in the future, so let me shut up. I don't have to explain jack to these people..but I did give my mother a look like you just had to show this didn't you. But that's what mothers do..they are proud of you, so they embarrass you. Its in their handbook to do so.

Right now, my mother is at the 7:45 service, and I had to bail and come back to her house. Two services in one day is just ridiculous, and its overkill like a mug. Now I love my mother, and I am proud of her, and you'd be hard pressed to hear me bad mouth her..we just are VERY different, and it is a bit of a challenge to find that common ground, whereas my dad and I stay on the same wavelength. But the love is the same regardless.

By the way, I saw WAY more cleavage in church today than I did at the bar on Friday night. It's more arousing to see it in church see a woman with a bible in her hand, and a few inches above that, you see the hint of big beautiful breasts just begging to released for the cruel captivity of a bra..or in some cases a demi bra....and yeah I said it.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

So the highlight of my day today was the time I spent with my father. I had been telling myself that I would take at least 1 or 2 weekends a month to spend some time with him, but our schedules really wouldn't allow that to happen. Today, we finally got it together, and I drove out there to see him this afternoon. I've spoken about this before, but to a certain degree I still have a bit of fear of my father. He's administered plenty of ass whippings, that I still remember all too well. Plus, I am in an eternal state of seeking his approval, so that leads to me to be a bit self conscious when I am with him. It has gotten better, but I think until he dies, I will have a bit of that with me. So I had a bit of anxiety when I stepped into the house, but this immediately subsided when he gave me that first strong hug and kiss (on the cheek). Once I got in the house, I stood in the kitchen drinking green tea, and he sat down at the kitchen table, and we remained in that position for 2 hours while we talked. We talked about Don Imus, we sized up the 2008 Presidential candidates, we of course talked about sports, we talked about his late father, and we talked about my brother and his happy family. A couple of times I would look at him and say to myself, damn I love this man, and I don't know what the hell I would do without him. He was oblivious to this, but then again, since he IS my father maybe he saw and recognized it.

After the conversation, my father made me some salmon and a salad, and we both sat at the table, and talked about my friends, me being single still, and whether I would consider leaving the area. I didn't know whether he was just making conversation or trying to drop me hints, but knowing him it was probably the latter. He has said to me before, that I should be doing much more in the writing field, and I need to stop selling myself short by not fulfilling this to the fullest. He spared me that convo today, but I felt it coming anyway, so I was elated when my mother called me to ask if I was still coming to her house tonight in preparation for church tomorrow, and I said yes. It was weird having the one parent who raised me on the phone, and the other one right in front of me, neither one of them knowing what was going on. I've long since given up on the notion that my parents would reconcile..I think at this point it would really suck...i'm used to getting clarity and sound decisions from my father, and emotion and spiritual guidance from my mother. If my worlds were to collide by way of their reunion, their roles would get all jumbled up, and I would be imbalanced. Selfish? Undoubtedly, but 'tis the way I feel. I'm rambling..

Anyway, our visit concluded the same way all my visits with my father have gone since I left home for college at age 17. He hugged me tight and kissed me on the cheek, said he loved me, patted my back two times, and then followed me to the car. He stayed on the driver's side as I started the car, and waited for me to roll down the window, and he waved goodbye. Then as I left his driveway, he walked down to the bottom of the driveway, and waited until right before he was out of my sight, and waved once again, and i did the same. Why is this significant? His father never did that kind of thing with him, when he would visit..except one day. One this one day, my grandfather walked my dad out, walked to the bottom of the driveway, and waved as me(3 years old), my brother (a few months old) and my parents drove away. The next day my grandfather died in his sleep of a heart attack..So my father now takes it upon himself to do that, and our visits are not officially over until that happens.

This woman I used to date a while back used to call me a Daddy's boy, and I used to vehemently argue against it, because I didn't like the way it sounded. But I now, I'll claim that title and then some. I'm a Daddy's boy, and will be until he leaves this earth.

I'm not proofreading this either, so kiss my ass if there are typos.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Shame on me. Two days ago, legendary football coach Eddie Robinson passed away, and I didn't even bother to write about it here. I spoke about it with other people, and I jotted some notes down about what I possibly wanted to say, but I never actually put words on the screen like I'm doing now. So much has been said about Eddie on ESPN, in newspapers, in talk radio, that I really don't want to rehash that here. But what I will say is that in the mid 80s, I found out about Eddie Robinson via Ebony magazine. Even though that magazine is bordering on irrelevant now, back in the 80s it held a special significance to me, because my family was living in a predominately white neighborhood. So as detached as it may sound, Ebony served as ONE of my ways to stay "black"(man i'm violating so many personal rules here). Anyway, in one particular issue, I read about Eddie Robinson, and how he had built the Grambling football team from the ground up. I remember being impressed with the kind of man he was, and once I paid attention, I realized that he put many players in the NFL, despite the fact that he coached at an HBCU. From that day, up until he retired in 1997, I had a special rooting interest in Eddie, and so I followed his career very closely, because he felt like a hero. His journey was rare in that he struggled before things were "fair", he fought to make things fair, and never complained in the process, and then he was able to stick around long enough to reap the benefits and be honored for both his struggle and his success. That's a full life my friends. And my favorite quote of his, was when he said, "My greatest success is that for 50 years I've had one job, and one wife". So more important than Eddie resting in peace, I hope his legacy and what he did to build it lives on..

Sittin' on the Dock of the Bay- Otis Redding

Thursday, April 05, 2007

I don't watch much television that isn't related to sports, but one of the shows I enjoy is Curb Your Enthusiasm.. The show was created, and is mainly about Larry David, who was the co-creator of Seinfeld. For most of the show, he goes in and out of trouble because of his big mouth, his inability to let things go, and his obsessive compulsive nature. I also like the show, because it gives me the opportunity to hear and look at Wanda Sykes every now and then. Why do I bring this show up? Because at times, unintentionally so, I think I act like him, and when I step back and examine it, its kind of annoying. Like this morning, while I'm trying to exit the train, this gentleman was standing in the door listening to his music. So everyone had to leave and enter the train from the side he wasn't on. Everyone else just breathed heavily and muttered under their breath, but I could NOT let that type of behavior slide, so I looked at him as I walked by and said, "You're just going to stand there and block the doorway huh?". He looked at me and said, "Mind your f*%*^g business". I didn't have an intelligent retort, and my hand isn't healed enough for me to be falling ass backwards into a fight, so I let it go. But as I walked away, I said to myself, why couldn't I keep my mouth shut. Why? Because i'm always seeking the upper hand. I don't know how to rid myself of that behavior. Perhaps I should bring that up in counseling..

I have a friend, who while in college, caught his friend masturbating in the middle of the floor. He went to reclaim his iron, noticed his friend's door wasn't all the way closed, so he knocked, then entered, only to find his boy in the middle of the floor with a shirt and no pants on, going for his solo style. My friend simply got what he needed, and left the room, and not another word was uttered about this. Even 11 years later, they still have not spoken about such an event. This is yet another addendum of man much as men like to clown one another, there are still a few things that are sacred, and that is one of them. For one, if you catch someone doing that, you pretty much own then in public. You all can be out, and they can be talking about something you did, and then you can shoot them that look that says, "Are we forgetting something?", and then it shuts down that person instantly, all through non-verbal communication. So, my question is, if a woman accidentally catches another woman pleasuring herself, do the same rules apply? I'm quite sure the knee-jerk reply here will be, "Oh its not big deal, that's a man-thing", but I don't know about all that. Masturbation is some real personal stuff, and to be caught in the act could potentially be devastating man.

If I hear the question, "Are you ready for Easter?" one more does one get ready for Easter? Do I buy a powder blue suit? Do I get my Jesus buttons and pins? Do I make a basketball out of the Palm I received on Palm Sunday? I don't get it. And I'm not at all being cynical about the holiday itself, because I understand the importance. But getting ready for it? Come on now...

Nas is Like - Nas
My favorite Nas song...he rides the beat perfectly in my humble opinion

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

A friend of mine once told me that at least once a week, if not more, we all should do something that we normally do not do. It could be talking to that person you've been avoiding, or inquiring about a job, finally hitting the gym, or basically anything that takes you out of your traditional, daily boring routine. Not only does it keep life interesting this person said, but it keeps us from going crazy. So last night, I spontaneously did such a thing. I was reading yet another stellar blog from my main man Bill Simmons, and I found myself wanting to write an article on whether Greg Oden should go to the NBA or stay in college at least one more year. Normally when I write articles like that, I don't put myself on a deadline, I just leisurely write it over a two or three week span. Some days I'll look at it, and decide I don't feel like writing, much like I do with this blog sometimes. But last night, I decided to knock it out right then and there. So I turned the tv off, I closed out all of the other windows I had open, except for Microsoft Word, and I wrote the article. After I wrote it, I submitted to a website run by a friend of a friend, and hopefully he'll put it up. I'm sure he'll ask me to edit, and I may even have to add some words to it, but the point is I did it without hesitation in a little over an hour. Those are baby steps I just took, and hopefully that will serve as a catalyst for me. We shall see.

The other thing that happened out of the ordinary for me yesterday, was that my boy Cliff sent me this book. Now why is that odd? As I've discussed in this blog before, traditionally guys don't get each other gifts, even on birthdays. A phone call is even a surprise sometimes, but a gift is a rare occurrence, and it violates the unwritten man laws. So for me to get a gift four months removed from my birthday was extremely odd, and a bit scary for me. However once he explained that he was in a bookstore and saw Dave Winfield signing a book he may be interested in, it all made sense, and it was a lot less ghey. I guess as we get older that kind of thing isn't so bad, but it is still a slippery slope, and I'll be monitoring this closely. I did start reading the book though, and it is damn good.

So this morning on the ipod, a Public Enemy song came on, and immediately it took me back into a nostalgic frenzy. And it also got me to thinking, why was Public Enemy so popular then, and why is it that their songs are still so very relevant 10-20 years later. Part of it is their subject matter(drugs, politics, questioning Bush, self pride) part of it is the comic relief of Flavor Flav, and part of it is their production team(the Bomb Squad). But to me, the main reason why Public Enemy was and is such an impressionable group is all about Chuck D's voice. No matter what he was saying, Chuck's voice damn near sounded like a minister's. He spoke in a certain tone and cadence, that almost forced you to listen to what he was saying. Not only that, he rarely smiled or joked around, so for me, I almost felt obligated to listen to the man with the scary voice, or there would be hell to pay..or maybe I'd feel like I was missing out on something. I felt like that back in 1989 when Fight the Power came out, and I felt like that the minute I heard Chuck's voice say, "I got a letter from the government..."

Black Steel in the Hour of Chaos - Public Enemy

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Have you ever had one of those days where you knew immediately after your eyes opened you were destined for a good day. There was no snooze button, no dragging in the shower while the warm water hit your face(and for my removable shower head friends, those other "special" body parts), and there was no laying back down on the bed after you got out of the shower. No my friends, these are the kinds of days where you feel completely invincible and it carries over from the time you leave the house to when you get back in the bed at night. Athletes call it being in the zone, jesus freaks call it being blessed, and regular folks call it just plain lucky.. Today is not like that for me. I have felt cranky from the minute I awoke from my 5 hour sleep. You see yesterday, through my travels and then my work day, I was operating on 20 minutes sleep. Between me playing records, writing on my laptop and watching the Florida-Ohio State game, I didn't go to bed until almost a jackass. And I'm paying for it dearly, as my eyes are burning as I type this entry. I may have to come down with a bad stomach flu and go home for some quality sleep.

Speaking of the laptop, I think the honeymoon period is over, and it's time to get down to do some serious writing. I've downloaded music on itunes, visited my favorite sites in the privacy of my own home, customized my fantasy footballs squads and all that, but now its time to write. I've started various stories and ideas, not I have to step my game up, give 110%, and take my game to that next level(that's athlete speak). As my boy Cliff so eloquently said last, I expected to see more blog entries, and instead you're writing less, and that has been true. Granted, I've been out of town, but that's no excuse, and I'm harder on myself than anyone else is on me, so I know better.

I was disappointed that Ohio State could not pull out the victory last night against Florida. Mainly because I was sick and tired of seeing Joaquim Noah's face all over my tv. He's an alright player, but dammit the media just couldn't get someone else on that team to interview and talk about. It was always him. But from a sports standpoint, it made perfect sense that Florida would win the championship. They actually had players who shunned the NBA, stayed together, and actually played like athletes who wanted to get better both individually and as a team. That is rare in today's college basketball landscape. Ohio State represents what we are used to seeing: A young team with tremendous talent, but a team that isn't quite ready to take that next step. The Florida players are now NBA ready, and they have served their time in college. No they haven't graduated, but honestly, they came to college to get a job(the NBA) and graduation is just an optional but rarely is it a necessity for the elite college athlete. It would be nice if the Ohio State squad actually stayed in school for another year or two, to achieve the kind of maturity on and off the court that Florida did, but I doubt it. Plus that's just the selfish side of me speaking.

And finally, I hate it when men and women who NEVER watch sports, all of a sudden watch a major sporting event, and then they want to come to your office and talk your head off as if YOU are the neophyte. In fact there is this woman here at my office, who I know is dying to make her loud mouth ass over to my office to do just that. I could be holding the phone and writing down a message, and she STILL would talk. By the way, this same woman used the word, "analyzation" on Thursday.

Visions - Stevie Wonder
I'll Do Anything/I'm Sorry- Ginuwine

The first song is the original, the second is the sampled version..
These songs make me a little less cranky