Friday, November 30, 2007

I had a dream last night that I was training for a fight against Oscar De La Hoya. Oddly enough, we were both training in the kitchen of my late grandmother, which is located in the heart of East Cleveland. De La Hoya had a professional trainer who was putting him through all types of rigorous workouts, and I had a trainer who watched De La Hoya's trainer, and then put me through those same workouts. I wasn't as smooth and fluid as Oscar, but I do believe I held my own. At no point during these workouts, did I stop to think of the magnitude of what I was trying to do. However the next day, when we magically arrived in Las Vegas, and there were thousands of people in the arena, I became petrified to put it mildly. Before I was introduced to the crowd, I pulled my trainer(whose face i can't remember) aside and I told him, "Man I'm about to get my ass kicked", and he said, "Yes I know, but just have fun out there". And I remember looking at him like he was crazy, but shortly thereafter I woke up. I have yet to sit down and think about what that dream means, so hopefully someone will beat me to it, and give me some feedback.

Like 80% of the country, I don't have the NFL Network in my home, so last night the lady and I had to make that short walk to a local sports bar to watch Green Bay and Dallas play. Now normally I make it a point not to watch football in sports bars, because I like to be in control of the remote, and that's just not happening in a sports bar. But since there was only one football, and two basketball games on last night, I knew I could watch both, without having to sweet talk a bartender into changing the channel. Some observations about my experience:

1) There were lots of couples in this particular sports bar, and I found that to be quite peculiar. And on top of that, there were lots of women in there who seemed to be genuinely interested in both the football and basketball games. This really shouldn't surprise me but it did

2) Going to a bar and rolling up on not one, but two free promotional drink giveaways is like going home with a woman, and then finding out she has a female friend that wants to give you the business too. Good times.

3)The DJ at this sports bar, just happened to also be the only Cowboys fan in the entire bar, and he made his presence known early and often. The Cowboys would rush for 3 yards, and he'd be screaming at the top of his lungs and clapping like he had just seen Prince live. I didn't think this behavior would last the entire game, but it definitely did. He was so annoying, that when Green Bay would do something even remotely good, the ENTIRE bar would clap and scream right back at him.

4) I think I broke some type of man law by kissing my lady about 3 or 4 different times. But given the environment(see #1), I think I get a pass. Although after one kiss in particular, I thought I heard the two bouncers snicker. Or maybe it was free drinks kicking in..who knows

5)I think its a pre-requisite that every DJ in a club, coffee shop, bar, etc play that god-awful Superman-that-ho song, and it makes me want to projectile vomit. I told my brother, that he and I need to record a diss record directed towards the ass clown who made that song. We could use the same beat and everything.

My Christmas party(not the 70s one) is on Saturday. I'm sure that will be chock full of blog material.

My Guitar Gently Weeps - Tom Petty, Dhani Harrison, Jeff Lynne and Prince
This isn't the whole song, just the incredible guitar solo by Prince (starting at the 18 second mark), during this tribute to George Harrison. And the way Prince walks off after his solo, is very pimpalicious. Yes, pimpalicious.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

I have random thoughts today...

-What is it about being in an elevator alone that makes you want to do a series of hard hip thrusts, as if you're in a Bobby Brown or a R Kelly video. I got in the elevator this morning, I posted myself against the wall away from the buttons in the elevator so that when people ran to catch the door, I couldn't easily hit the "door open" button, and then the doors closed. As soon as they closed, I did about 5 hip thrusts in a row with my jacket open, and then I calmly walked out. I feel a bit naughty, yet liberated.

-My office is having a 70s Holiday party, which quite possibly may be the dumbest shit I have ever heard of in my life. The holiday season has enough pull to stand on its own. You can include mistletoe, ornaments, xmas trees, a menorah, a kinara, and a cd full of holiday music. So to jazz up the holiday by adding a 70's theme to it, is WAY extra and just plain stupid to me. However, since I blew off the holiday planning meeting, I suppose I can't talk. But what I CAN do, is magically get sick or leave early on that day. In fact, I will cook something, put in a disposable dish, bring it to the party, and then slip out early. I want no parts of anything having to do with the 70s at this point, except the music.

-why do people yawn with their mouths open? If you're in your office or if you're home alone I suppose this is acceptable behavior. But if you are in the middle of a crowded train, and you just open your mouth wide with no regard for others, that is a violation of epic proportions. When its early in the morning, your breath smells like one of three things: 1)coffee 2)cigarettes or 3)ass..although there is a fourth option, but that's not suitable for me to type on this here family blog. The point is, it takes minimal effort to take your hand and cover your mouth. When I saw this woman in front of me yawning with reckless abandon, I really wanted to stuff something in her mouth, but my zipper was stuck.

-Trying to get off the phone with my parents sometimes is like Neo trying to find a ringing phone in the matrix. It isn't easy to find an out at all. My dad and I can have about 30 minutes of strong conversation, then we get to what I like to call the "reaching portion" of the conversation. This is when everything has been talked about, but neither one of us wants to be the one to get off of the telephone. So my father proceeds to ask me, "So what else is going on?" about 567 times. And then I proceed to ask him something mundane like, "so what music have you bought lately?", and this bullshit goes on for a good 15-20 minutes, and it is just brutal. Last night, I used dinnertime as an out. Other nights I pretend someone is on the other line, and one time, at band camp, while my father was talking, I called my boy Cliff on the land line and asked him to call my cell phone so I could be free. When I told my dad Cliff was on the other line, he said, oh tell Cliff I said hi, I said, "Will do", and I got the hell off the phone.

Carousel - Michael Jackson

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

During my 3 minute walk from the train station to my job, I heard a song come on my ipod entitled, "You'll Never Find A Better Woman" By Teedra Moses.. In the song, she speaks of the numerous examples of neglect her man has showed during the course of their relationship. And apparently on her way out the door, she humbly tells him that he'll never find anyone better than her. Well guess what Teedra? Yes he will, and so will you.

Anyway, the song got me thinking about the arrogant things people say once they leave or get left in a relationship. I've heard things as tame as, "You are going to miss me" and "I'm the best thing that ever happened to you" to "No one is going to f*ck you like I do" or "who are you going to find to make you come so hard". Now I am quite sure that men do this type of thing too, but since I've never dated or severed ties with one, I can't speak on it. But when women do this to me, I just keep silent because I surely don't want to aggravate an already sensitive situation. But in my mind, I want to mush them and tell them to shut the hell up. Breakups are rough and they are also emotional, but you make things worse by making a jackass of yourself by possibly overplaying just how vital you were to that person. Instead of just saying, this person wasn't for me or this person got the best of me, and I have to leave, other ill-placed emotions come out. Its the equivalent of the Dallas Cowboys getting their ass kicked by the New England Patriots, and then saying to the media, "We lost that game, they didn't win.". Come on man..sometimes you just have to take the fat L, learn your lesson and live to see another day. Of course, I have never been on the receiving end of a breakup, so I can't really say how I would react, so this may render my whole entry void.

My point here is that after a breakup, both parties will eventually bounce back, both parties will be happy if not happier, and it is quite possible their new partners will make them feel way better than the previous ones. Its just how life is..although I will say that every man and woman has that ONE person, who really would devastate their life if they left, and it takes an entire village of friends and family to restore that person's confidence. I am with such a person right now, and sometimes, in those quiet moments that I rarely speak about, I think about how I would feel if she upped and left me, and how sad and broken up I would be if I know longer had her. But that's why kidnapping was invented right?

just kidding. Oh and I LOVE the Patriot Act!!!!

Love's Still Good - Chico Debarge

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

I remember how I felt 11 years ago when Tupac Shakur was killed in Las Vegas. I didn't know the man, and I definitely didn't completely agree with how he was carrying himself at the time, but I knew he was talented and smarter than what he was demonstrating. And I remember seeing signs here and there that he was turning the corner, and I hoped that he could survive the young and dumb portion of his life long enough to live a full life. So when I heard that he was shot, and then he was eventually died, I was sad that he never really got a chance to see how good life could truly be. I felt that same level of sadness when I got out of the shower this morning, and saw that Sean Taylor died. Just like a lot of athletes or youngsters in general, he had gotten into some trouble early in his NFL career, and the media and the executives at the Washington Redskins, really got on him because of that. But by all accounts yesterday, he was on that road to turning his life around off the field. On the field, he was injured, but prior to his injury, he was having another stellar year. Now he's gone. He can't be a father to his daughter, a son to his father, a teammate to the Redskins or anything. I heard someone on the radio comment that this type of violence happens everyday and in every city, and that is very true, but whether its right or wrong, I don't feel for everyone who is on the receiving end of this type of violence, because I don't know their faces. I know Sean Taylor's face. I live in DC, I see and hear his name everyday of the week. He was on one of my fantasy football teams, and I remember seeing him play in college, so it its just a little bit closer to home than Johnny getting shot on the mean streets of Compton. Neither life is less valuable though. Not by a longshot. It's just sad man. I'm sure I'll snap out of this funk by lunchtime but right now I have only known the man has been dead for 2 hours, and its still raw.

A Minute To Pray and Second To Die - Scarface

Monday, November 26, 2007

I really did not want to be off from work today, because it just looks bad to take the Monday after a long weekend off. But I have a cough that won't die, my voice is going in and out, and I have been up since 4:30am, so I really had no choice. I have learned that there are two types of sick people. There are the babies who sit in bed all day long, and ask someone to take care of them, and they just act like complete and utter jackasses. Or you have the people like me, who are in severe denial about any sickness, until they are so sick that they absolutely need someone to take care of them. I don't like to be vulnerable at all, and that faux fearlessness has me on my ass today. Although its not so bad to watch football highlights all morning. Speaking of football...

My beloved Philadelphia Eagles almost pulled off the upset of the year against the undefeated, alleged best team ever, the New England Patriots. In fact, that's probably why I am sick now, because instead of taking my ass to the warm bed, I stayed up hopping around and talking trash while wearing my jersey, my shorts and sipping wine. I don't think I've been that into an Eagles game since the playoffs last year. Unfortunately, they lost, and the playoffs are not an option this year, and in all probability, Donovan McNabb will be playing for another team.

I know I sometimes pose rhetorical questions in this blog, but today I really would like an answer. On Saturday night, the ladyfriend and I went to pick up some Thai food we ordered via phone. We walked into the restaurant, and the food wasn't quite ready yet, so we hung at the bar, and one of the servers came and brought us the bill. On this bill, there was a line for a tip, and I found myself wondering what the hell the tip was for. The food was not delivered, I came to pick it up, and the waitress who handed us the bill wasn't even the woman who took the order via phone. So basically I would be tipping the waitress for carrying my food from the kitchen to my hands..that shit ain't tip worthy. So I took all my change and walked out of there. Was I wrong?

Is It Good To You - Tammy Lucas

Friday, November 23, 2007

I think my young nephew is scared of me. Since he and his family arrived yesterday morning, he has not allowed me to hold or play with him without kicking and screaming like a maniac, and I am taking it personally. He let my mother hold and sleep with him last night, but the most I get is about 5 minutes before he goes crazy. Back in April when we met, he was way more affable. We spent about an hour alone together looking at the television, talking about life and all that jazz. I guess now that he's officially 1 year old, and he has gotten his first fresh haircut, he thinks he has gotten too grown for his uncle. This behavior will definitely go in his chart, and the amount of money he will be eligible to receive from me is decreasing like sand from the hourglass. He has all of today to redeem himself.

In all seriousness though, it amazes me how kids can become fixated on things. Young Nazir saw me pulling out the scrabble board from the across the room, and IMMEDIATELY, he began to plot and make his way to me. He used the edge of the couch to walk half of the way, and the he crawled the remainder of the way to me. Once he arrived at the scrabble board, he carefully examined it all while keeping a close eye on what I was doing. I can't even describe the look of determination on his face as he looked at the game piece by piece. Can you imagine your only challenge of the day being whether or not you can navigate your grubby little hands thru fascinating world of Scrabble?

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

I am here in Greensboro, North Carolina visiting my mother for the Thanksgiving holiday. My brother, my sister-in-law, and my year old nephew(fresh off his FIRST haircut) are coming down here as well. After picking me up from the airport, my mother had to stop by the Bennett College campus to take care of some fact that's where I am blogging from now. Since I have been here in her office, about 67 women(this is an all girls school) have come in here and introduced themselves to me, and somewhere in the conversation they all manage to look at my hand, and then ask why I am not married. Initially I was a little confused, because I know plenty of 32 year old men who are very much single. Then it was brought to my attention, that people in the South tend to get married a little quicker, because Southern hospitality and family values have been beaten in their heads from day one. I'm sure that's not true for all Southern men and women, but that theory has definitely played itself out over the past 2 hours. And its not that I'm even against marriage, because I definitely have marriage on my menu. I just haven't had to deal with folks(who weren't family) asking me what's taking so long.

We Are One - Ledisi and Rahsaan Patterson

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

If I had an infinite amount of time on my hands, I would focus all my efforts into accomplishing things: 1)Stalking the paparazzi and 2)going get a writing job in Hollywood. Stalking the paparazzi might be the more difficult of the two, but I would try my hardest to make it happen. I would pay close attention to the closing credits of all those shows that are so annoying like Access Hollywood, and the like, and if I could I would obtain a list of the camermen, producers, and writers too. At this point, I would gather all of the people I knew who were crazy enough to pursue such an endeavor, and we'd stalk these people. I would get them at the grocery store, in front of their houses, on the way to the gym, and I would be sure to stick the cameras and the mics as close to their faces as I could. And then I would ask important questions like, "Where are you going?", "What are you wearing?", "How does it feel to have such a dumbass job?", and then I would post all of my encounters on the internets for all to see. There's just no way in the world, they could feel comfortable with that type of invasion. Of course no one has this kind of time, so these jackasses continue to get away with stalking the stars. As I told my ladyfriend, if I got famous, and they wanted to follow me around, I would pull my genitals out and play with them each and every time. The rationale? If you're going to follow me around all like that, at least I can get money's worth.

The second idea, and the one that may be a bit more realistic for me, is for me to fly to LA or NY and get a job as a writer. All of these writers are picketing and striking and with good reason, but I could use this as my shot to be famous. I could go to a favorite show of mine (Daily Show with Jon Stewart for example), tell him I would work for free, and I would ask him to let me write two shows for him. He would have nothing to lose, and I would have everything to gain. If the shows sucked, he could kick me out, and I would fade into oblivion (or Bolivian as Mike Tyson says). But if the shows are good, and Jon Stewart and his audience like and support me, then I could definitely parlay that into a full time job as a writer in Hollywood or New York. I'm sure the writers who were striking wouldn't appreciate that, but the consensus seems to be that after the holiday season, they will all be back to work, so I wouldn't be taking money from them. I have actually given this a decent amount of thought, and the grand wheels in my head are turning as to how I could make this happen. The walls of this blog are getting a bit restrictive.

Young, Gifted and Black - Big Daddy Kane

Monday, November 19, 2007

I try not to do it too often because it can be kind of expensive, but everything now and then when the mood hits me, I like to visit Starbucks. My drink of choice is usually Caramel Apple Cider, although the other day I had a Gingerbread Latte that was quite tasty as well. Well this morning, the line in Starbucks was insanely long, so I decided to go a different direction, and I visited Caribou Coffee. This would allow me to 1)Avoid the headache and aggravation of the long line and 2)Use the $1 off coupon of theirs that I had been walking around with for over 3 weeks. So I go in the store, and it was basically empty except for other woman in there. I scanned the menu looking for the Caribou Coffee equivalent of Caramel Apple Cider, and then I see it. The title of the drink? Hot Apple Blast.

Now the first thing I did is re-read it to make sure I wasn't reading it wrong, but when I re-read it, it still said Hot Apple Blast, and in my mind I was like you gotta be f*cking kidding me man. So I go up to the counter, and there sat this big black dude who looked to be about 6"4 or 6"5, 300lbs, and once he opened his mouth I also noticed he was a bit sweet(read: ghey...not that there's anything wrong with that). So I look this man in the eye, and ask him for a Hot Apple Blast, and he chuckles and then rings me up. The only other woman in line chuckled too, and at this point, I decided something needed to be said. I asked everyone behind the counter if there was another synonym they could come up with for "blast" and everyone just burst out laughing...but I got no answer. The woman whose job it is to call out the drinks to the drink makers yelled out, "One Hot Apple Blast!", and the laughter continued. And when the guy finally gave me my drink he said, "Here's Your Hot Apple Blast sir", and before I took the drink from him I asked him how often this drink is ordered, and he said, not very often. I can't begin to tell you how dirty I feel drinking this drink. But if it means I can avoid long lines and aggravation, I'll get Hot Apple Blasts every damn day.

Blue - LeAnn Rimes

Saturday, November 17, 2007

So last night my lady and I attended a concert at the historical Lincoln Theatre. The concert was Anthony David, Fertile Ground and Kindred the Family Soul. I had never seen Anthony David or Kindred before, but I had seen Fertile Ground and I wasn't impressed at all, so I didn't know quite to expect.

The crowd was mostly women and couples, and from the start it felt like a date atmosphere. I also saw one of the barbers from my barbershop at the show, which was hilarious. None of the barbers really strike me as the kind of dudes who would attend this type of show, and you could tell because he said hello, and then kept it moving. But anyway, here is my review on each of the acts:

Anthony David
He has an above average voice, but his performance was lacking because he only had a guitar. No band, no backup singers, just him. He was smart enough to do several songs that required some call and response, but honestly that wasn't enough for me. The only time he got a big response is when he did the songs of others(Lovely Day by Bill Withers and Something About You by Level 42). Then he would go right back to his songs, and the crowd would die down a bit. And then to make things worse, he ended by performing a song about not being able to stop his cheating ways, and you could hear women all over the place kind of sigh in disgust. Needless to say I wasn't impressed with his performance, but he has a good voice, so maybe I'll download some of his songs to get a better impression.

Fertile Ground
I wasn't impressed with them when I saw them at a festival in Baltimore, and I wasn't impressed with them last night. They remind me of Frankie Beverly and Maze. Maze is a much better band than Frankie Beverly is a singer, and the same holds true for Fertile Ground. The band which consisted of a trumpet, a sax, a drummer, a keyboardist and a guitarist really sounded damn good, and full of energy. The singer really didn't' impress me all that much, and she spent more time doing liturgical dances all over the damn stage. And on top of that, she had something on her head that was eerily similar to the statue of liberty I kept wanting to scream out Ellis Island. But unlike Anthony David's sub par performance, I was able to pay attention to Fertile Ground because the band was stellar. Or perhaps it was two glasses of Merlot I had downed.

Kindred the Family Soul
Kindred was the headliner of the show, and you could tell as soon as they hit the stage. One, its nice to see a husband/wife combination perform on stage together. Off the top of my head, only Ashford and Simpson come to mind in terms of other husband/wife combos. I could definitely tell that they had strong feelings for one another. Not to mention, Aja(the wife) was visibly pregnant with their fourth child, yet she still had lots of energy. The band was good, they interacted with the crowd, and it didn't hurt that both of them were on their game vocally. If I had known more of the words to their songs, I would have stood up and sung and clapped, but I stayed my ass in my seat and clapped. I was happy they salvaged the show.

Overall I give the show a 5 out of 10. With no wine, my rating would have plummeted to 3. And by the way, your eyes aren't deceiving you, if you go back and click on that link of Ashford and Simpson, you'll notice that Nick Ashford is the second coming of Jesus Christ himself.

Friday, November 16, 2007

I have extremely mixed feelings about this indictment of Barry Bonds. I have always like Barry's style. He's always carried himself in a manner that says, "Eff you, I know I'm good, now watch me back it up", and he always did. Most athletes give you politically correct answers or they talk in athlete speak (I give 134%, i'm just playing my game, i want to give credit to my teammates, etc). Those kinds of athletes keep things placid, but they are frustrating to journalists and writers who crave for something controversial, and Barry was and still is that controversial man. Barry was voted as the player of the 90's back in 2000, and he was voted to the all-century team that same year, and he was voted by the media. That's where my love for Barry started. But he's messed up since then. He got greedy back in 1998 when he saw Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa, both of whom were on some performance enhancing drug, get an insane amount of love from the media. So he started taking some type of steroid himself. He could have come clean about using drugs back when he initially went in front of the grand jury, but he didnt want to snitch on himself or others, and now its come back to get him. Not only that, it has robbed me of the chance to possibly see him play one more year. We'll see how things unfold over the next few months, but it looks bleak.

This whole concept of carpooling is very fascinating to me. One person goes to a random spot, and picks up 3 or 4 people on the way to work. Then they all sit in the car in silence(for the most part), and they ride for anywhere between 20 minutes to an hour into work, and then the driver pulls up to the designated spot in the city, and the passengers get out and go on their merry way. I for one, could not have folks in the car with me and not speak or something. But 9 times out of 10, I wouldn't want to speak to strangers anyway, so they probably wouldn't even make in in my car. And what if I wanted to blast this song all the way into work? Would they ask me to turn it down? Would they give me dirty looks via the rear view mirror? I know the whole point of carpooling or picking up slugs as it is affectionately called sometimes, is to cutdown on the number of cars on the road. Plus it helps keep the environment clean, and I'm all for that. But I'd much rather drive a Prius than pollute my car with strangers in the morning and again at night.

Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic - The Police
This is the perfect song to do the Carlton dance to

Thursday, November 15, 2007

A few years ago, I saw this movie with Robert Deniro, Angela Bassett, Ed Norton and Marlon Brando entitled The Score. In the movie, Ed Norton played a man who was acting mentally challenged, in order to help his friends pull off a heist in an art gallery. Not until the very end of the movie, was his cover as a faux mental patient exposed, and by the then he had already gotten away with "The Score". Why do I bring this up?

There is this guy in my office who is mentally challenged named Brad. Brad's job is to empty the trash, and then replace the bag that's in my can. He and another mentally challenged fellow who doesn't speak a lick of English, usually alternate doing this task. Brad usually does this task in about 30 seconds, and then he spends the next minute or so engaging in small talk. The typical conversation goes like this:

Brad: So what are you doing this weekend, are you going to go out or stay kind of(every sentence ends in kind of)
Me: I think i'll just stay in relax
Brad: so you're just going to relax, that's good kind of, i'm going to stay in too kind of, or maybe catch a movie, yeah, kind of
Me: That's good man
Brad: have a nice day
me: you too brad
Brad: ok you too brad

I must admit the first couple of times he talked to me, I fell out laughing. I wasn't necessarily being mean I don't think, but when you're dealing with someone mentally challenged, you never know what you're going to get, and it can be humorous. Now its to the point where I don't even think twice about dealing with him, and I am very much used to seeing him and kicking the "mathmatics" if you will. But in the back of my mind, I think about that Ed Norton character from "The Score". And although there really isn't much to steal from my where I work, what if he's faking it? What if he really just wants to slowly and methodically rob and steal from everyone on this floor? He has it so that everyone speaks to him, but they really don't pay close attention. He is in people's offices while their briefcases, bags, purses, and computers are very much in public view. In fact, I'm sure people would accuse me of stealing, before they confronted Brad. If he pulled that "Score" off, I wouldn't even be mad at him, in fact I'd come visit him in whatever jail they put him in, and I would ask him what prompted him to do it, and then I'd try to write a story and profit off his ass.

Soon I'll Be Loving You Again - Marvin Gaye
I'm well aware that I have posted this song before, but I'm posting again. Why? because the song is dirty, and from the 1:53 mark of the song until the end, Marvin chants "I'm gonna give you some head" in the background about 45 times in a row. Who doesn't love that kind of persistence?

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Normally I don't like to write about current events, because by the time I get around to writing about them, the topic has already been beaten into submission by the media, co workers, and people running their mouths on the train. But two different thoughts about two different stories went across my mind today, so I could not pass up an opportunity to write about them.

The first has to do with Kanye West and his mother passing away. I really don't choose to focus on the circumstances around her death, because at this point it doesn't matter. The part of this story that I found to be most painful is that Kanye found out about his mother's death while he was in London. Now losing a parent is tough enough, especially when that parent is relatively young, and you are very much dependent on them. But to find out about something like that when you're halfway across the globe has to be extremely difficult. Can you imagine the range of emotions Kanye must have been going thru on that plane? I'd be pacing, praying, cursing, crying and who knows what else. A friend of mine got a call that her mother had been in a car accident, and she said that on the way to hospital she could barely think straight, because it wasn't clear whether her mother was dead or alive. Those are the types of situations you really never forget about, and I hope to God that doesn't happen to me, but I'm aware that it could at any time.

The second situation is not so much depressing as it is mind boggling. Isiah Thomas, head coach of the New York Knicks, was accused of sexually harassing a former employee, and after a hilarious court battle, it was decided that the Knicks(not Isiah) had to pay this woman $11 million. During the court case, we also learned that allegedly Stephon Marbury, a player for the Knicks, called this same woman a bitch. And he cheated on his wife with some NY Knicks intern in the back of his limo(surprise, surprise). It was also alleged that the owner of the Knicks, James Dolan, knew of all this, and just let it happen. Now granted all of this happened before the NBA season, and by the time the season started NO ONE GOT FIRED. Let me do something like that at my job, and I'd be fired AND in jail. But here's the kicker, and here's the reason I had to write about this. Stephon was told yesterday that his playing time would be reduced a bit, and he got mad and didn't travel with the team to Phoenix. At some point, he allegedly told reporters that Isiah had better not mess with his playing time, because "he has so much dirt" on Isiah (aka I'm sooooo snitching). As I am typing this, it feels like an episode of Jerry Springer or something, but sadly it isn't. It's part of the big bag of wrong that is the New York Knicks. Here's what should happen: 1)James Dolan the owner should fire Isiah. 2)Stephon Marbury should be traded or bought out of his contract 3)David Stern, the commissioner of the NBA should strongly urge Dolan to resign. The Knicks are on of the most stories franchises in the NBA, and those three moves would be a GREAT start in them recapturing that glory.

I'm all over the place this morning..i'm spotting dimes and eating onions.

Thinking About Your Body - Bobby McFerrin

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

My son's mother finally decided to stop being a tyrant, and she called me last to say my son needed basketball shoes for the upcoming season. I immediately got her off the phone, and I spoke directly to him about what he wanted/needed. I know all about this game, because I used to play it with my father. I would tell him that I needed Jordans
because they were the best shoe out there performance-wise, and he would say until you have a job, I am not buying you $150 shoes. I'd end up getting shoes half the amount, and of course once the season started I didn't even notice. It didn't hurt that I went to high school in a mostly white neighborhood, and they really weren't making fun of kids who couldn't afford Jordans, because most of them didn't even know the fashion statement that went with wearing them. My son goes to school in a predominantly black neighborhood, so I realize that he MAY face a little peer pressure about his shoes, but I am not succumbing to that..not yet anyway. If I start that trend now when he's 10, I have to keep it up for 8 more years.

Anyway, once I get young Carlton on the telephone he tells me that he wants Michael Jordans. Remembering a tactic that my father used on me, I asked him to give me three choices of shoes he wanted, and I asked him to rank them. There was a 30 second pause on the other side of the phone, and then he said his first choice were the Lebron James shoes, his second choice were the new Jordans, and his last choice were the shoes of Paul Pierce. He will be getting the least expensive of the three, until he shows he is as passionate about basketball as he is football. If he is a basketball prodigy, I'll buy him an impressive spread of baller ass basketball shoes that he has never seen before. Or I could compromise and get him the new Starbury(aka Stephon Marbury) shoes that cost a whopping $15. The possibilities are endless. But the key is to make him happy, teach him a slight lesson, and to not come off as a pushover of a long distance parent. We shall see what happens.

Miles Jaye - I've Been A Fool

Monday, November 12, 2007

There is a distinct difference between waking up at 5am before work, and waking up early on your day off. So this morning when I was awakened by rain and wind, I was able to appreciate it a little more. I appreciated so much that about 4 or 5 different spoken word performances flew in my head while listening to the rain and wind. I will share one of those unedited performances:

*the following must be read in the spoken word cadence and the Maya Angelou voice*

i sat in the bed, i heard the wind, i felt the rain as it came and it came
like i wanted to be doing at that point, but it was not yet meant to be
so i waited there patiently, feeling the breeze, and hearing the rain
this lack of release felt like slight pain or was it discomfort
if i'm not married does that make me a strumpet
i've veered away from my thesis, the rain/wind melody plays like a pianist
and yet i still lie awake alone with this sound
the point to this poem has yet to be found
whenever you call me i'll be around
let's go get some barbecue and get busy

The above exhibition is futility is why I can't stand poem and poets(sorry Nichole), but I definitely respect them. I am definitely not a creative writer. One time when my brother and I were taking in copious amounts of liquor together, he told me I unleashed a freestyle rap for the ages, but sadly the world will never see me achieve that level of greatness again. I am going to enjoy my day off now, because clearly I don't have anything of note to share on this Veterans' Day.

Lionel Richie - You Are

Saturday, November 10, 2007

For about five years now, I have wanted this Ahmad Rashad jersey. As I explained in this entry last year, the first football game I ever watched, I saw Ahmad Rashad play, and the instant I saw my name in bright lights on the back of his jersey, I went crazy. I've asked past girlfriends and family members to get this jersey, but for whatever reason, I never got it, and I basically given up on it. You might ask why didn't I just buy it myself? The jersey was just too expensive, and I thought it would be better as a gift. Well my friends, today was my lucky day, because my girlfriend broke the 5 year curse, an she just presented it to me, and I cannot stop smiling. I know throwback jerseys aren't even stylish right now, but I could care less because it has my name on the back. And when I consulted the fashion handbook, I saw that under that circumstance, me wearing the jersey is 100% legal.

Good times indeed, I'll be purchasing the engagement ring tomorrow

Friday, November 09, 2007

So, in what has become the norm since this Daylight Savings Time b.s has been in effect, I woke up at 5am today, and I have not gone back to sleep. I turned on Sportscenter, watched it for a bit, and then they went to a commercial, which freed me to channel surf a bit. I stopped on the Discovery Channel, and this is when my adventures began.

Initially I stopped at that channel, because I saw a woman on her back with her breast out, and instantly I was intrigued. Then as the camera angle got wider, I was able to see what was REALLY going on, and that was a woman giving birth. The breast that I saw was actually just a wardrobe malfunction, because I never saw that breast again during the 7 minutes or so I was watching. This woman was in some kind of room giving birth. Behind her was someone holding her head and keeping her relaxed. In front of her was the doctor I assume, and there were two other individuals in the room keeping score I guess, who knows why they were there. The interesting thing about this childbirth, and the reason why I didn't change the channel initially is that this entire operation was underwater. The doctor's lower half was underwater and the pregnant woman had just a little more of her body underwater as well, and I found that to be fascinating. That fascination quickly subsided, when the cruel cameraman decided to enable the zoom function. He zoomed in close and tight enough so that I could see the baby's head coming out(crowning I believe is the official term), but still I could not turn away. I can't even begin to name all of the things that were coming out of this woman, but after many faces and much pain, the pale baby came out and everyone in the room rejoiced. I have some observations after watching that display:

1)Childbirth is NOT a beautiful thing. The foreplay leading up to making the child is wonderful. Making the child is simply beautiful. Watching a woman as her stomach gets bigger I could see as beautiful. And once the baby comes out and the woman is no longer in pain, that too is a beautiful thing. But the pain, the pushing, the blood, the faces made, the pain, the grip the pregnant woman had on her helper's hand and the pain? No beauty there my friend. None at all.

2)When I get married and my wife gives birth, I promise you that she won't be the only on drugs in that hospital room

3)I want a female doctor delivering my child. I don't care how unsexy the childbirth process is, no way in hell is a dude going to get that much of a free look at my lady's nether regions.

Baby Don't Cry - Lalah Hathaway

Thursday, November 08, 2007

I can't tell you how much of a man I felt like this morning, when right before I walked into my building, Beyonce's, "Irreplaceable" came blaring through the headphones of my Ipod. That's one of those songs that when it was out, you simply could not get out of your head, but since I hadn't heard it in a few months, I thought I was in the clear. I guess not.

One of the things that bothers me about the media these days, is their kneejerk reaction to annoint something as the "best ever". A new movie comes out, it is discussed as the best ever. A new singer comes out and sells lots of records, all of a sudden they are rumored to be the best that ever did it. And if an athlete has two or three great years, then they must be the best. But yesterday, I read something, and it really made me angry..angry enough to address here this morning. According to an article, Chris Brown is supposed to be the next Michael Jackson. In that same article they say he also might be the next that I can believe. But to compare anyone who is making music today to Michael Jackson is just blasphemy to me. Allow me to run down the reasons:

1)Michael Jackson can actually sing
2)All of Chris Brown's dance moves are Michael just looks differemt with a heterosexual person like Chris does them
3)Thriller and Off the Wall alone are better than ANYTHING Chris Brown will ever do
4)A Chris Brown video will never premiere on regular network television
5)Michael Jackson has been relevant musically since he was 5, which means EVERYONE knows who he is in all genres of music. Chris Brown isn't known outside or R&B
6)Most artists who are popular before the age of 18, generally fade before they hit 21, let alone 25. Michael was big from age 5, up until his last album came out in September of '01, when he was 43.

I suppose I could go on, but I do believe I've made my point. Michael Jackson wasn't just given the title as of one of best entertainers ever, he earned it. Just because someone new and fresh comes along, that doesn't mean they can wear the title. I know this comes off as me hating Chris Brown, but this is just me sharing my heterosexual love for my favorite androgynous singer.

P.Y.T.(The Demo Version) - Michael Jackson

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

I don't know what it is, but I frequently have problems with older white women asking me to do things for them. It is something I have to get over, and I know its based on me thinking that somewhere in their heads, lies some racial discrimination, but in reality I am the racist one. I can have a white guy ask me to lift something for him, or help him carry something, and I can let it slide. And of course, I have no problem helping out someone of my same race, or any other race for that matter. The only reason I would say no is out of sheer laziness. But there's something about an older white lady, who can barely pronounce my name, asking me to lift, carry or move something for her that really makes me angry. This happened a couple times yesterday, and the first time she did it, I started to say, "Do it your goddamned self", but that would have promptly gotten me fired I'm sure. I guess the alternative would have been for me to ask her to call a janitor or building services, but then I'm seen as hostile or confrontational I guess. The second time it happened, I just looked her dead in the face and moved something for her, and she looked away feeling uncomfortable i'm sure. This is unfair on my part I know, but its one of my flaws I continue to improve upon.

I could be extremely naive here, or maybe as a mere citizen I don't have a clear understanding of the totality of the situation, but it bothers me that we are giving billions of dollars to Musharraf and Pakistan, and at the same time we readily admit that we aren't quite sure he's using the money the right way. That is a gamble of epic proportions. That's dumber than betting that the Dolphins will beat New England next week. In this country, when the government gives or lets you borrow money, you have to do some type of justification as to how you'll spend it, and in some cases, in order to CONTINUE getting money, you have to itemize how you spent it. But in this case, we have no real clue as to what's going on, yet the money floweth. Selfishly speaking, about half of that money could be spent on rebuilding the schools in the DC area. Less money being put into school system means that the sharpest minds aren't always in the class which means that smart teacher who could reach that previously unreachable kid, is now in a more lucrative profession and the kids still suffer, and then they turn to violence. I am oversimplifying a bit here, but I'm not that far off. A solution to this problem may not be able to happen until January 20th, 2009, but it was on my mind enough to write about it.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

There is something going on between my blog, and my work computer, and frankly it has me highly perturbed. For some reason, I cannot spell check, and attach links on here like I usually do, and so it forces me to just write without flair. I rely on flair to help hammer home my various points, and I rely on the music I link on the bottom of entry, to show off my little music collection and to convey how I am feeling on any given day. Without these toys, I feel like Tom Brady without Randy Moss, or Bush without Cheney and Condi Rice, or Sonny without Cher, or like Iraq without oil. I just feel plain naked, and I am going to have either a)start blogging before or after work or b)continue to write without flair or music. This is very disheartening, and I can't exactly go to the IT folks here and ask them what is it up, because they will say, "Why the hell are you blogging anyway?". Perhaps I need to get in good with one of them, and then ask them on the sly. I must ponder and pray on this.

Not to get all inside baseball this morning, but it looks as if Steve McNair(if I could use my links, I'd show you who he was) of the Baltimore Ravens is done as a quarterback, and its sad for me. I remember being a senior in high school, and watching McNair and his Alcorn State squad play the Hampton Pirates on BET. I was already headed to Hampton, so I was really watching to see my future college, but instead, I was treated to an incredible performance by Steve McNair. He could run, he could throw, he could throw on the run, and most importantly he was winning. He went on to finish in the top 5 of the Heisman trophy award that year, and then after sitting on the bench for 2 years in the NFL, once he got his shot, he was just as successful at the highest level. The highest point of his career, is when he led the Tennessee Titans to the Super Bowl, and he was one play short of winning. But all the hits and injuries he's played through have taken a toll, and he really hasn't been the same since he left Tennessee. And last night, it was sad watching him get beat up, or caught from behind my younger more spry players. I hope I'm wrong about him, but given what I've seen over the past 2 seasons, I don't think so.

welcome to the non-flair, non link version of my blog.

Monday, November 05, 2007

After spending time with my father on Saturday, I have pretty much come to the conclusion that I definitely want another child. I sat and talked to my father for over 2 hours, and during this particular conversation we started talking about various times when I messed up when I was younger. We discussed the time when I lied about getting my report card, we discussed the time when I stole a couple of Playboys from his best friend, and we briefly touched on other times when I messed up during high school. He told me that he would sometimes punish me, and then laugh behind my back(especially with that Playboy incident). He told that his philosophy was to give me as much rope as possible, which ideally would have given me many chances to come clean with the truth, but I rarely took the bait. And as I got older, he said that beating or hitting me wasn't really an option, but making me feel like I had let him down was. I would get those speeches with him saying, "You know Rashad you really let me down, or Rashad you betrayed my trust" or something to that effect. And since I looked up to my father so much, comments like that would cut much deeper than a spanking or getting hit in the chest. But now that I am 15 years removed from those lessons, it was actually kind of fun talking to the person who had administered those lessons to me. Its no different than an ex-student going to visit a college professor.

So what does that have to do with me wanting another child? Circumstances have not allowed me to have that type of relationship with my son. I never married his mother, and as a result, I don't get to see the day-to-day things that happen with him, and I really am not raising him. I give him lessons here and there, but realistically speaking, it is mother who is administering the lessons he'll retain. That situation contiunes to be beyond my control, barring some sudden change of events. So once I get married, I very much plan on having a child(hopefully a son) who both me(and my wife of course) can influence in a positive way. In some respects that can be seen as selfish, but I disagree. To me, its more a matter of continuing the lessons that my father has instilled of me. I think it would be selfish NOT to pass those on..

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Like millions of other folks probably did last night, i went to see the movie American Gangster. When one goes to see a movie of that magnitude, lots of thought and love go into preparing. First, I had to make sure that I choose a theatre that is going to have minimal problems. I don't want crowd noise, I don't want people clapping at the end of movies, and I don't want kids getting in my way or any of that. Then on the day of the movie, I want to be there early enough to get a decent seat on the end, so that I don't have to contend with people trying steal my arm rest. So by the time we sat down to watch the movie, everything came into place. No real noise, great seats, popcorn, etc. Failure to pay attention to these types of details, can lead to a miserable movie experience.

The movie itself? It was just ok. I compared it to the movie, Ray. Jamie Foxx did a damn good job, but to me the movie plot wasn't enough to carry the movie. In American Gangster, Denzel, Russell Crowe, and a couple of other actors did excellent individual jobs, but overall the movie was just ok. It reminded me of a more refined New Jack City, but the plot was the same. The best of the movie to me was seeing Ruby Dee get a movie role. I worried about her after her husband died, and to be honest I really hadn't heard much about her since then. But she looked good in her role as Frank's mother.

So if I were forced to rate this movie with 10 being the highest, and 1 being the lowest, I'd give it a 6.

Jay-Z - Roc Boys

Friday, November 02, 2007

I was in line at the CVS this afternoon, when I noticed a dog behind me. At this point in my life, I am conditioned to pet and stroke a dog, if they look friendly enough, so this is what I did. As I started to pet this German shepherd I realized that this was a guide dog, not a regular dog, and you are barely supposed to look at these dogs let alone touch them. I guess the owner of the dog got a sense of what was going on, and she yelled out, "Please don't touch the dog", and I immediately backed away, and I apologized. But at this point the damage had already been done, and the dog was sniffing my hand, but putting his head near my hand trying to get some love. I thought these dogs were trained to ignore idiots like me, but clearly this dog had slipped through the cracks. I immediately felt bad, and I quickly left the CVS, but before I did, I looked back and the dog was looking at me. I wanted to wink at him or something, but I don't think dogs know what that means.

Rick James - Moon Child

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Yesterday, as part of a bet she lost, my ladyfriend took me to this establishment called Exhale. The plan wasn't to eat, or even drink heavily, but to have one shot each, and then get the hell out of there. Now I have been to this establishment on other occasions, and my times in there have always been mediocre at best, but considering what the task at hand was, I thought this place would suffice. When we walked in there were numerous signs hanging, which said something to the effective of, "If you set foot in this place you must order at LEAST one drink". Never in my life have I seen that kind of b.s. posted up throughout a bar. I mean these looked like fliers a 9 or 10 year old had made, and they were everywhere. The bartender wasn't very friendly at all, and she was shaped like a medium sized humpty dumpty..if that makes sense. The drinking-a-shot-on-Wednesday Gods were trying to tell us something by giving us all of these signs to leave, but we stayed put and ordered two shots of Amaretto.

Now Amaretto isn't typically administered in shot form, but I like it because it is smooth, sweet, and it is a perfect after dinner drink. So the waitress pours us two shots, and then puts a third one down. We each drink our shots and then we split the third one. Now at 100% of the bars I have ever been to, if a bartender puts a third drink anywhere in the vicinity of my hands, that means that drink is on the house. I have been in or witnessed this scenario at least 50 times. That's just bartender etiquette..if it wasn't on the house, after you finish the first two, they'll ask if you want another, which means do you want to PAY for another. Well since I won the earlier bet, my ladyfriend paid for the shots and we walked out..About 5 minutes later, after we were a good distance away from this spot, she tells me that she had to pay for 3 shots, but she didn't want to make a big deal about it. She strategically waited until we were too far to turn back, because she knew that I would have raised hell and unleashed a verbal jihad on her uneven ass. But alas, I never got the opportunity, and the cooler, more mature head prevailed. So I guess what I'd like to know at this point is if bartenders usually charge in that instance, or do I have the right to go back up there and be a nuisance.

We Need A Resolution - Aaliyah