Wednesday, May 30, 2012

First off, young Nyles is still sick, although his cough and congestion situation is definitely improving. We are hoping he can return to daycare on Friday, if not next week. He has gotten me sick as well. I tried to go to work yesterday, which was a disaster, and today I feel marginally better, but not as good as Nyles.

I should be writing the press release my brother asked me to write, but I'm just not feeling up to it yet. But what I AM up to doing is recording and narrating yet another video of my son. I know my friends, family and others are annoyed at the barrage of videos I seem to be recording and posting, but I can't say I really care. I enjoy it way more than writing about the details of my mundane life..

And now, more Nyles:

Friday, May 25, 2012

Two follow up stories to yesterday's elaborate Starbucks incident. One, that woman who I got into it with, is a new employee in my building, and I saw her as I was leaving for the day. I didn't speak and neither did she, but eventually one of us will have to say something..perhaps I'll take the high road. And two, this morning after I got my hot drink, I spilled it on the bottom of my shirt, my crotch and my I guess this means she wins, and I lose.

And now one of my favorite scenes, from one of my favorite movies...

Thursday, May 24, 2012

So I'm in Starbucks paying for my Green Tea Latte and my banana, while listening to the loud chatter of pretentious people, when I noticed the woman next to me. Her wallet was dangerously close to falling out of her pocketbook, but she didn't notice because she was on her cellphone talking at deafeningly loud volumes. It was my intention to say something to her, but her big mouth just made me want to see her take the "L".

I was well on my way to allowing her to take that "L", when her wallet fell out, and on its way down, it knocked down four cd's (Esperanza Spalding's newest cd, "Radio Music Society" at that) fell on the floor. Since I'm a big Esperanza fan, I couldn't bear to see her cds strewn about the coffee beverage stained floor of Starbucks, so I removed my headphones, and attempted to pick up her wallet and the cds near my right foot (there were two cds that were closer to her right foot).

As I bent down to get the fallen items, apparently this loud woman decided she wanted to get the cds by HER foot..

**sidebar on** When one is trying to pick up items off the floor, there are two schools of thought in terms of what the best practices are. Some people just slightly bend down, and reach for the floor, putting their backs at all kinds or risk, and some people bend their knees all the way down to the floor, and pick up things that way. Keep this in mind **sidebar off**

So I attempted to use the reach method at the same time this woman used the bend down method, which meant on my way to getting the fallen items, I brushed up against her ass. I'm drawing this out for storytelling purposes, but I promise you it happened quickly. Undeterred by the ass brush, I still picked up the cds and her wallet, put the cds back, and attempted to hand her wallet back to her. This woman abandoned HER mission to pick up the cds, snatched the wallet from me, and proceeded to have this classy conversation with me (in front of Starbucks staff and customers):

Her: What the f**k you touch my ass for?

Me: Ma'am I'm sorry, I was trying to pick up your wallet and the cds, and...

Her (interrupting me): Bullsh*t. That don't have sh*t to do with you grabbing my ass, what you that pressed you need to get your cheap thrills on early in the morning?

Me: Ma'am, I just brushed it, and I'm sorry we just bent over at the same time

Her: You probably liked that sh*t, you f**king perv

Me: Look, we both been in line for 10 minutes, if I wanted to grab your ass I'd have been done it. You got your wallet, now get your f**king coffee, and shut the hell up

Her: F**k you

Me: If you drop some more sh*t, I suppose there's always a chance right?

Now at this point, we had an audience, and I was slightly embarassed, so I put my headphones back on and hightailed it out of there. (Plus it was clear I was NOT going to get the last word, as evidenced by the impressive string of expletives she continued to put together as I exited the premises). I really have been living the calm and serene life since Nyles was born, but goddamn, you can't curse me out like that, when I accidentally brushed you, while giving you your fallen wallet. COME ON!

Oh and the cds that were closer to her, were STILL on the floor as I exited. I don't believe in calling my black and white sisters out of their name, so I will allow Compton's Most Wanted to do it for me:

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

When adults are sick, they typically keep going to work (because they have so little leave), and they unintentionally (or sometimes with intent) get at least four or five other people sick in the office. Occasionally you'll get someone who chooses to stay home when the symptoms start to creep up on them, but even then, the preliminary damage has probably been done already. I've dished out some colds, and I've taken in plenty too (that's what she said).

When infants are sick and daycare is involved, the rules rely less on myopic planning, and much more on rigid policies. Nyles was sick yesterday, and the wife and I read the daycare guidelines, which basically said any hint of sickness means the kid cannot enter the walls of the daycare sanctuary. In fact, I'm sure the daycare staff is taught that words like sneeze, cough, and congestion should be viewed in a pejorative light--and frankly I don't blame them. Colds in youngsters spread like wildfire, and before you know it, 20-30 kids are home, which means 20-30 parents are using up hard-earned leave.

So the wife stayed home yesterday, and her and Nyles took turns volleying the cold symptoms back and forth. They were both coughing, sneezing, congesting and mucus-y, and miraculously, I was able to avoid any and all symptoms--until this morning. Nyles and the wife are home again (with my father-in-law, who will surely be sick by the time he leaves), and I'm at work sniffling and blowing my nose (not at the same time). I seemed to have temporarily staved off the coughing part, but I'm sure that's coming. This of course means that without investing in some rouge cold-stay-the-hell-away techniques, I will be spending my three-day Memorial Day weekend, all jacked up. I'd like to thank young Nyles and the wife for that.

Speaking of Nyles, here we are last Monday after his bath. And yes, in the top left hand corner of the picture, you can see half of Michael Jackson's Thriller album cover. I have it framed in my bathroom. And for those of you who read my blog, are photogs (I think at least three of you are), and hate these kinds of camera pics, please know that me, Nyles, my dad and my older son Carlton will be taking "official" pics this summer, which will be coming to a corny Christmas card near you very soon.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Five years ago this morning, I woke up to 34 missed calls and 10 voicemails--one of which was my landlord telling me there was a fire in my apartment and I needed to come home ASAP (I just happened to stay at an ex's house that night). Of course I later learned I lost everything except the laptop I am currently typing on, and my life changed forever, eventually for the better. Still, I would be lying if a day goes by when I don't think about an article of clothing I used to have, that 12" Bonita Applebum record I haven't replaced, pictures that are gone, furniture I purchased, etc. On the flip side, prior to the fire, I was engaged in some reckless behavior that needed to be reeled in big time. I know Don Henley tells us that we should never look back, but to some degree I'll always do it. I just won't dwell on it too long, which is why the length of this entry wills remain at one paragraph.

Also, read the article I helped to write. I don't want to end on a low note.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

I have been floundering around the workforce since 1997, and during that time I have tried to follow certain rules. I don't discuss too much about my personal life, I don't do group lunches, I don't drink coffee brewed in the office and most importantly I do NOT put up pictures. It isn't like I haven't had people who are picture frame worthy in my life over those years, because from my parents, to my brother, to my oldest son, I definitely have. But if I had placed those framed pictures on any of the work desks I had over the years, I would have fallen into the trap.

First a co-worker would come over and look at the picture, and then pick it up off the desk and bring it closer to their eyes like Mr. Pitt.. Then they would ask me questions about who was in the picture, where they are, how old are they, how much I look just like whoever is in the picture, and they may even attempt to regale me about stories from their own life. Next thing I know, 20-30 minutes would have elapsed, and I would still be ensconced in a figure eight of small talk--and that's all with just one person. Imagine if three or four people came in during the course of the day. Rashad would get upset.

But yesterday when I got home, my wife had pictures of Nyles and our wedding on the table with accompanying frames. She suggested I take some framed photos to work and put them on my desk, and I attempted to give her the abridged version of what I wrote in the first two paragraphs. She ignored me, put a picture from our wedding in a frame (the one of Nyles didn't fit the frame), and put it in my work bag (which already contained crackers and rhymes).

This morning I came to work and put the picture up on my desk for all to see. It has been up about an hour and I only had one visitor, and he ignored it. If it stays that way, the picture will remain. If I get heckled, I'm taking it down..and as I was trying to finish typing that sentence a second co-worker came in and said something. I may have to disappoint the wife..

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

My grandfather died back in February, and since my mother did not want my grandmother to be all alone, she decided to move my grandmother in with her--in fact she completed the move two weeks ago. And judging from the phone and email conversations I've had with her during that two-week span, my 80-year old grandmother is thoroughly kicking my 60-year old mother's ass.

You see my grandmother is suffering from dementia, which means she forgets, she's cranky, she's depressed over things she can no longer do, and as difficult as all of that is, she still is grieving over the recent loss of her husband of 40 years. Meanwhile my mother has a very difficult job at her university, that has been kicking her ass for 2 years now. When you add in your sick mother who worked your nerves before her sickness, it is just an impossible situation. But I know they are both powering their way through. But this isn't about them.

This year is my wife's first mother's day, and I want to spend it with her and Nyles, so I won't be able to take that trek to Cleveland to visit my mother. And since my grandmother cannot travel either, that means that I will have to send my mother gifts and flowers. And usually that is no problem. But this year, since her and my grandmother are shacking up, I have to send two different arrangemetns

**sidebar on** A special shout out to my lazy ass brother. I asked him to pick an arrangement to send to either my mother or grandmother, and he just told me to pick two, and he'd pay me back. Good job brother.**sidebar over**

Anyway, I'm not sure what the hell I'm going to do in terms of sending arrangements. Do I send them the same thing? Do I send a slightly better arrangement to my mother, or do I respect my elders and give my grandmother the better one? I have no effing clue here.

Friday, May 04, 2012

A couple of months ago my wife looked at me and said that she would NOT allow our son to watch the Wiggles, and at the time I just basically shrugged my shoulders and said whatever. I knew it was something kid-related, and at that time I was in absolute denial about the prospect of having to watch, screen and analyze that type of programming. Of course, a day after that, I found myself knee deep in all kinds of kiddie tv, but I still didn't come across the infamous Wiggles.

But last week I saw these four gentlemen called the Wiggles on my television, and I was deeply disturbed. These four full grown men (I wouldn't be surprised if they were my age) were singing, dancing, and prancing around my television in outfits that looked like rejects from Star Trek's USS Enterprise . I didn't take the time to truly listen to what they were saying, and I DID notice that young Nyles was pretty captivated, and I was disturbed. I figured out instantly what my wife did not like about these gentlemen--they just looked like they were a Chris Hansen visit away from being thrown in jail for unsavory acts. I hate to be cynical, but damn.

And then I found myself wondering what kind of action they get socially. Can you go in a bar and say you're a member of the Wiggles, and get the ladies hot? Or if they are on the other team, do the other men of the ghey, look at them and their profession and think that they are prime catches? I have no idea what their collective salaries are, and maybe if I did, I'd know exactly how they do in the social arena. But still, it is deeply disturbing to know my son may get hooked on them.

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

My friend Janelle has business called "Designs of a Butterfly", where she designs greeting cards, invitations, and other magical things that I'm sure she doesn't even realize she can do. Go visit her site and buy something please.
So last night the Knicks lost to the Miami Heat for the second time in three days, and afterwards, Amar'e Stoudemire was so upset, that he threw a punch at a glass fire extinguisher case, which required serious medical attention. The classy, but funny headline writers at the NY Daily News countered with this headline

I could not help but think back to February of 2007, when I got into an argument with my then-girlfriend (not my wife), and I hit a wall in my house, and fractured my left hand in two places. One moment of anger cost me 8 weeks of being a cast/ace bandage. I had to quit my flag football team, I couldn't really write anything, my co-workers thought I had hit my girl, and not the wall, and it was just big bag of wrong. To top it off (Starks got ejected), my doctor at the time told me, "Rashad, the wall always wins in those situations", and I couldn't even get mad because he was right.

My then-relationship pretty much ended after that, but a few months later, me and my healed hand re-connected with a lady who would later become my wife, so who is the f**king winner here? Ok maybe not. But the point is, I feel Amar'e's pain, because a) he's way more famous than I'll ever be, b)he probably will cost his team a quicker exit than they would have had if he was healthy, and c)he'll have to wear the Scarlet "L" on his chest all summer. I also feel sorry for him because he's wearing nasty looking cornrows in 2012, but that's his challenge.