Friday, April 30, 2010
If I was your girlfriend
Would U remember 2 tell me all the things U forgot
When I was your man?
--Prince, “If I Was Your Girlfriend”
It all got started just like this.
As I prepared to leave the house, I just stuck my head into the room where my wife sat to let her know I was leaving and inquire if there was something she needed me to bring back. But she gave me the stink eye. You know the one—one eyebrow raised, one eye squinting, and her mouth pursed with the corners downturned into a frown.
Immediately, I knew I had done something, but I didn’t know just what; I’m always unwittingly doing something. So my mind kicked into rewind, and I thought back as far as second or third grade trying to figure out what I had done to upset this woman, but I only drew a blank.
So I made the mistake of asking her why she seemed upset with me which only seemed to irritate her further. As I turned to leave, she practically growled at me, “Think about. I’m sure it will come to you.” And I did think about. I thought about it all the way to my car, all the way up the street, and around the corner, but then something else caught my attention, and I forgot all about it.
However, a while later as I stood in line at the store, almost serendipitously, I overheard the conversation of the woman standing behind me. Not that I was eavesdropping, but she was wearing one of those obnoxious Bluetooth things that everyone seems to be wearing now.
From the tone of the conversation, she appeared to be talking with a friend, a woman. And it appeared that she and her significant other were having some kind of problem, the nature of which I was not able to ascertain, in their relationship. In fact, they had been having this problem for quite some time, and she was about ready to throw in the towel on the relationship.
But it was not this particular problem in question that made her so ready to end the relationship; it was his approach to solving the problem. You see, he had the nerve to ask her just what he needed to do to make her happy. And she was highly peeved that instead of just figuring it out for himself, he should turn to her for the answer.
But this is the thing. It seemed like her girlfriend to whom she was speaking with on the phone knew all about the problem. In fact, from the part of the conversation I could hear, it appeared she knew about the problem in great detail. Yet, he, the significant other, did not; he seemed to have no inkling what was wrong.
Now, I don’t want to get into any broad and sweeping statements here. And I certainly don’t want to speak in any essentialisms like women do this and men do that because some times I have those days when my Jockey briefs are all in a wad, but let me take the time out to just ask sisters, “What’s the matter with a brother just asking?” Is that so wrong? Why leave it to us to figure the thing out all by ourselves because admittedly, we can be a little slow sometimes.
And I don’t claim to speak for all the brothers, but just those who are trying to get this thing right. I’m talking about those brothers who are trying to get keep their home game tight, the house macks who ain’t planning on going nowhere because they haven’t been out there in the streets for so long that they couldn’t even survive in the wild. They have become domesticated.
But just tell us all those things about us that you tell your BFF. Tell us all those things you tell your sister. Tell us those things that tempt you to call into the Gayle King Show on Oprah Network. Tell us those things you daydream about that cause you to giggle for no apparent reason. Tell me what you are thinking when I catch you staring at me when you think I’m not looking, and I ask what are you staring at and you smile slyly and toss your hair a bit and say nothing.
Even tell us those things about ourselves that we need to know even though those things might our feelings. But tell us kindly and with a kiss. Ain’t nothing wrong with a little directions; after all, we are in this thing together.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Monday, April 26, 2010
Don’t You Dare Touch the Animals, but Women Are Fair Game: Why Does Nike Continue to Do Business with Ben Roethlisberger and Other Athletes Who Have Abused Women?
Sunday, April 25, 2010
Blog Talk Radio: The African American Body Image Episode: When We Look in the Mirror, Just What Do We See?
Saturday, April 24, 2010
You can use gravy to relax after a long day Last year when we went on vacation, my wife spent an absolute fortune on some kind of mud bath. Spa personnel submerged her in a tub filled with warm but supposedly sterile mud (How do you sterilize mud?) that was meant to draw the impurities out of skin.
Need to know just how many chickens to take to the doctor with you under the new GOP health plan? This site allows you to determine just that.
Friday, April 23, 2010
Another one for you fellow bibliophiles. California Newsreel is allowing free viewing of the Zora Neale Hurston biographical documentary, Zora Neale Hurston: Jump at the Sun, which can be previewed in the short clip above. You can assess the complete film online by clicking here. The film won an award for the Best Educational Film at the 27th Annual International du Film sur l’Arts.
Viewing of the video will remain free until May 1st. After May 1st, the video may be purchased through the California Newsreel site.
h/t Prometheus 6
In the Land of the Blind, the One-eyed Man Is King: Could Republicans Be Hurting Themselves by Supporting Rubio over Crist in Florida?
Thursday, April 22, 2010
The Republican Party Has Mistreated African American Voters, Senator Lindsey Graham Is Gay, and Other Terribly Obvious News
Sometimes “the news” is so utterly obvious that I find myself shaking my head and scratching my behind at the same time, because this is what I do when I am befuddled, while trying to figure out just what makes it news in the first place. Has this ever happened to you?
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Bernie Goldberg Fires Back|
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
A HIV-positive pedophile is set to be released from prison. It is almost certain that he will re-offend. But what can we do?
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
I need you to do me a favor this morning and answer a couple of questions this morning. For one, what is this seemingly uniquely American fascination with guns? And next, why does the media seem lose their mind whenever someone does or says just any old foolishness and blow it all out of proportion?
Monday, April 19, 2010
There is this postmodern theorem that states that whatever is considered revolutionary or subversive at the moment will invariably be subsumed into the prevailing power structure to be used toward its own ends. In other words, what is radical and revolutionary and subversive today will eventually yield its countercultural virtues and loyalties to that very thing it wishes so ardently to destroy.
More than a little amused, I have been quietly watching the Reverend Al Sharpton’s flirtations with the Barack Obama administration. Early on in President Obama’s historical campaign, both Sharpton and the Reverend Jesse Jackson tactfully and tactically indicated that they would hang back a bit to determine Obama’s posture toward the African American community.
However, many wondered if more than a little jealously was at play, and Reverend Jackson seemed to make it almost obvious with his remarks that he wanted to “cut [Obama’s] nuts out.” But then he made up for it with the image of tears of supposed joy streaming down his face on election night.
But Sharpton did eventually jump on board, and he campaigned hard for Obama. And when the president finally assumed the office, Sharpton was one of the first he received in the oval office.
And on a later date, as President Obama’s commitment to the African American community and a Black Agenda was being argued, Sharpton emerged from a meeting at the Whitehouse with the president and other black leaders who in their remarks seemed to suggest that President Obama didn’t need a Black Agenda. In facing and taking on the challenges of the nation, he is, in actuality, facing and taking on the challenges of all people to include African Americans.
That seemed like a sharp departure from all of Sharpton’s previous rhetoric. But my eyebrow really went up when Harvard professor and lawyer Charles Ogletree, the president’s former mentor and friend, announced Al Sharpton’s new role as administration ally, President Obama’s voice in the street, “a conduit between the disadvantaged and powerful leaders.” Pretty high-falutin language, huh?
This is problematic because Sharpton’s greatest worth to the African American community is in the role of agitator working from a position outside the power structure to keep it reasonably honest and fair in its dealings with that community.
Never mind the perm and the jogging suits and the big gold medallions of the good old days. No one can whip up an indignant protest like the Reverend Al Sharpton, however self-serving and self-aggrandizing he might seem.
No racist or corrupt politician or government official or police chief or CEO wants to look out their window to see a permed out Al Sharpton marching down the street, bullhorn in hand, leading a crowd of protestors whipped into a frenzy by his rhetoric.
Furthermore, the media loves Reverend Al, and he returns the love every chance he gets. It seems that he never met a microphone or a television camera he didn’t like. But whatever you might say about him, he does use the media to his greatest advantage in taking on those issues and cases no politician would touch; he has, in many aspects, became the voice of the voiceless.
However, now he gives that all up. At one time he fought against the man; now he is the man’s right hand man in the streets. If you think about it, though, it was a masterful move on the part of President Obama. By courting Reverend Al, he kills two birds with one stone.
On the one hand, by bringing Reverend Al on board, he negates a powerful and potential voice of protest from within the African American community and reduces that community’s ability to hold the administration accountable.
Of course, Tavis Smiley is another voice of powerful and potential protest, but a number of African Americans, if not most, are cynical of Smiley’s motives, and should Smiley get too loud, Obama has Al Sharpton to attempt to keep him in check.
What do you think that whole other Black Agenda Summit hosted by Sharpton was about this weekend? It was to counter the Smiley hosted We Count!: The Black Agenda Is the American Agenda Summit. Reverend Sharpton is already on the job.
You know, I cannot figure out if our Uncle Al has sold out or bought in; I am actively trying to figure that out now. But it appears that for the time being, the revolutionary, subversive Al Sharpton has been thoroughly and completely subsumed.
What do you think of the Reverend Al Sharpton’s new role in the Obama administration? Do you think he is selling out or buying in?
Also see: It's official, Al Sharpton finally becomes the HNIC: Sharpton touted as Obama's man in the streets!
Saturday, April 17, 2010
Do you remember that young lady or that young man you had such a crush on in high school? When you see them at your twenty-fifth class reunion, you will be glad that she or he wouldn’t give you the time of day. Almost the whole of my high school tenure, I had this crazy crush on a certain young lady. However, throughout high school she wouldn’t give me the time of day. I don’t want to embarrass anyone by using real names, so we’ll just call her Bootzilla. I just wasn’t cool enough for her. Anyway, a few weeks before my twenty-fifth high school reunion, my mother informed me that she had stopped by the house, left her number, and requested that I give her a call.
Men, trimming your toenails are an important part of good grooming. I had an aunt who would always fuss at my uncle about clipping his toenails. According to my aunt, my uncle’s toenails were so long and sharp that they would tear her good sheets at night. It was all fun and games then, and I had a few laughs at my uncle’s expense until I had my own long and sharp toenail episode.
If you see someone with a grimace on their face coming out of the bathroom holding their stomach, don’t go in! Recently during a doctor’s appointment, the nurse sent me into the doctor’s office unisex bathroom to give a urine sample. However, just as I was going in, this tiny little lady with this huge frown on her face came out holding her stomach. Well, not suspecting anything, I went in anyway.
If your wife tries to talk you into joining her on a raw fruit and vegetable and whole grains diet, do not do it; no good can come from it. My wife suggested that we go on some raw fruit and vegetable and whole grains diet that this fruitcake at work told her about. According to my wife, the diet would clean the toxins out of our systems. Of course, I wasn’t with it, but she kept bugging me and bugging me until I finally gave in.
Friday, April 16, 2010
Common sense is genius dressed in its working clothes. –Ralph Waldo Emerson
Please indulge me this morning. If you have followed this blog for any period of time, you know that I am not one to rant and rave; in fact, people who know me, both on-line and off, frequently compliment me on my aplomb, my ability to keep my composure and not go off and cuss somebody slap out even when going off and cussing somebody slap out would be understood given the situation and the level of asininity.
But a soulbrother can take only so much, so this will be a rant. However, the good news is that I am unable to sustain anger over a long period of time—being angry tires me out—so this will more than likely be short. “But what has you so agitated?” you ask. This morning common sense, or more precisely the seeming lack thereof, has absolutely frustrated me to no end.
My maternal grandfather did not have much formal education; he only managed to reach the fifth or sixth grade before familial responsibilities forced him to quit school and go to work in the fields. However, he was, in many aspects, the most intelligent person I have ever met.
Back in the day, he was like a negro Socrates or Aristotle or something. Whatever book knowledge he lacked, he made up for through empirical knowledge, through keen observation of the world around him. He listened more than he spoke, and each new experience, each lesson he learned, he filed it in the back of his mind. And when the time came for him to apply that information, he reached deep into the recesses of his mind and applied it to the task at hand. He called this common sense.
When I was growing up, he used to always tell me, “Flukie,”—that’s what he called me because I was a bit uncoordinated as a child—“book sense without common sense is almost as bad as not having any sense uh-tall.”
Since that time I have had the privilege of being around some of the most brilliant people in perhaps the world. Daily I interact with veritable geniuses and people with a gang of degrees from some of the best universities and an alphabet soup of letters behind their names. And daily I wonder how in the hell some of these people manage to be so utterly intelligent without even the slightest hint of common sense.
The most mundane tasks befuddle them. The simplest directions must be explained to them in the minutest detail. Any little disruption of their daily routine sends them into a tailspin. If I might again quote my learned and esteemed grandfather, “They don’t use their head for nothing but a damn hat rack.”
So that I might be perfectly honest and fair, I know that without a doubt that I am perhaps one of the most absent minded people walking. I constantly forgot things like my gym locker combination and my phone number, which is certainly plausible since I don’t call myself anyway. I constantly misplace things like my wallet and car keys. And just last week I actually left the house wearing two different shoes, but you cannot underestimate the difficulty of discerning a brown loafer from a black loafer in dim lighting. It did feel somewhat funny on my feet though.
But, nevertheless, I do take time out to think. I do take time to look at the problem from every possible angle before I decide on a solution. I do try to use my capacity for abstract thought to read between the lines and fill in the information or the steps that are seemingly missing. I do take the time to ascertain meaning and motive before I throw a hissy fit and point accusatory fingers at those who have simply mis-spoke or who are not specific enough in their utterance. In other words, I try to simply use common sense.
Wouldn't the world be a better place if we all took time to do this? Wouldn't you feel less frustrated on a daily basis on a daily basis if people just took time to think? Wouldn't you have more time on your hands if you did not have to spend so much time trying present a common sense argument to people who use no common sense uh-tall?
Ah, now I feel much better. I got it off my chest. And I feel a bit better. I apologize to anyone I might have offended. This rant was aimed at no one in particularly. Well, yes it was but they are not speaking to me anyway, so what the hell.
So, let’s have one big virtual group hug, and carry on with our day. I’m going to get me a Slurpee, then sit back and finish getting my mental mind right, so I can finish what I was working on before this foolishness jumped off.
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Huh? What? Well, after years of publically claiming the label, after years of running for office on the label, after writing an autobiography which featured the label prominently in the title, he claims that he actually never was what he said he was, nor did he say he was what he said he was. It’s all like a surreal mavericky political Jedi mind trick.