Friday, August 14, 2009

Are Black People Too Forgiving?

So I haven't blogged in apparently over a year, but I was 'inspired' by some current events, particularly, the Mike Vick situation and the range of reactions to it. (Who knows, maybe I'll start blogging again?)

While I would like to say that I'm surprised by the reactions to Vick's reinstatement and how they appear to be, in a lot of ways, split by race, I'm not. Historically, us Black folks have been quick to forgive other Black folks that others have denigrated. The easiest way to look at this is to say that we forgive because Vick, O.J., Marion Barry, etc. are Black, but I think it's a lot more than that. That is not to say that race doesn't play a part, and anyone who thinks otherwise would be misguided in my opinion, but in many ways we feel a connection to those that are looked down upon. It's very difficult for me to look at the Vick signing and people's reactions and not feel that they would be different if he wasn't a Black male. And for that reason, it's easier for me to forgive him. This is not to say that I condone what he did, but I can see that he served his debt to society and that he deserves to make a living doing what he does best.

What I find ironic/interesting is that the people who are against him keep saying that he doesn't deserve a second chance. Here is a man, that destroyed his reputation, lost countless millions, may have destroyed his career and yet people want to take more from him? What more does he need to do? And if you say that he needs to feel what the dogs felt, how are you any better? I heard one person on a Philly radio station say something to the effect of "besides going to jail, what has Vick done to show he should have a second chance?" That blew my mind. As if going to jail isn't that big a deal, and he should be castrated or something to show everyone that he's the contrite Negro and he's oh so sorry.
These are the same people that were saying he wasn't humane?

What I won't do here is defend his actions, or even bring up the argument that "it was just dogs" and that there are players in the league that have killed people, but I will say that I'm glad he got a second chance because I do feel a connection to him. I feel like I've been there with him. That I've been looked down on for whatever reason, and I would love to believe that at the end of the day, I could get a second chance. That I live in a country where it is possible for young Black male to make a mistake and not have it be held against him for the rest of his life.

I would like to think that people would use this as a way to see what it's like to be 'young, gifted and black' and how difficult it can be. Maybe I'm reaching too much with this, and maybe it's not that serious and has nothing to do with race. But when much of your life has been affected by race, it's hard to not see things in shades of Black and White. And if this offends you, I'd be curious as to why that is. Do you honestly think that race doesn't matter? I'd be curious to hear why not. (and please don't say Obama)

Anyway, something to think about. I will say this though, I hope that this Vick situation brings up more dialogue because there are too many things not being said in this discussion and that's a problem.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Youngest MILF?

There aren't very many words that can describe the amazingness of this video... besides the obvious allusions to BBD and the beautifully choreographed dance break down which was last seen in the mid 90's, this video is everything that is right with both music and our society.

The changing state of the family has required the need to address the status of the young MILF, and I for one am glad that Lou Draws had the fortitude to do it. Kudos brother.

However, this does bring in to question Dallas Penn's assertions that older women are better because of their similarity to seedless watermelons.

Video Link

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Politics are fun?

They are when they look like this

After the seriousness of last night's results... I'm glad to see someone having fun with this.

I would dance to this in the club like what...

Can we make dance that would somehow involve standing in a voting line, actually voting, and then "throwing it up"?

Someone get to work on that for me please...


Thanks to download the song here

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Who wants to go do hoodrat stuff with me?

And if you "smoke with cigarettes"... thats a plus.

Little boy is in the system and he's 7... the teacher in me shudders for any that have to deal with this kid in the future...

But the regular guy in me... is laughing my ass off.


Tuesday, April 08, 2008

I love vocoders...

And if you love them as much as I do... you'll love this... one of the funniest things I've seen in a while...

T-Pain and Akon go to lunch... Enjoy


Sunday, April 06, 2008

Trying to ball...

So in addition to not blogging, I've been, apparently, trying to act like I have a lot of money.

In what may be a misguided attempt to step my game up and help stimulate the economy, I've recently purchased a couple things that have left quite the dent in my pockets but in some respects have increased the quality of my life...

The first would be my snazzy new glasses... in my opinon... they're quite nice. New glasses are nice, but can get quite expensive... and it's never the glasses, but those damn lenses. Luckily, I've got some of that health insurance to cover SOME of the cost...

The most important of my purchases however... is my iPhone.

Yes, I am of one of those iPhone people... and you know what... I love it. It seriously is one of the best things I've ever purchased. I won't get into it too much, but yea, it's great. And a number of my friends are more than slightly jealous.

And even though I have to go to the Apple Store and be one of those
people... it's a small price to pay for the gloriousness that is the iPhone (White folks sure do love the Apple Store)

And they even gave me a completely new one, when mine started acting funny after I started plugging it into random things to see if it would work... don't do this.

My most recent purchase and maybe the one that hurt my feelings/pocket the most is my new LRG 'Time is Money' G-Shock...

I'd never had a G-Shock before, and when I saw this, I was quite enamored with it. Besides being the colors of my people (Naija what!), it's really well made with lots of attention to detail and one of only 500 in the world.

It comes in this nifty box...

and is made of the very stylish white rubber... bling is for bamas.

There are tons of details (and a panda) on the band of the watch and the back of it... just well made all around.

So now as I try and catch my breath from some of these purchases, I'll be waiting for that Uncle Sam stimulus check... I've done all the stimulating that I can handle for quite a while.

Been soo long...

Yea I know... who does this guy think he is? He doesn't blog for two months and then comes back as if everything is all good...
My apologies folks... I've been derelict in my duties, but at the same time I've been trying to enjoy life rather than document it.

Yea... that's my excuse...

Anyway... I guess I'll start with my spring break.

I cleaned my closet, which is a really big feat... and most importantly, I went to Orlando to kick it with my girl and go to the Jay-Z/Mary J. show.

The show was amazing folks. I had never seen Jay or Mary J. perform live before, and to put it simply, they did the damn thing.

I don't think I'd ever seen someone put as much into every song as Mary J. does. (That's her singing "No More Drama") I always made jokes about how much passion Mary seemed to have before she got her life together and how mellow she is now... but that is not the case. I actually think she was in tears a couple of times. One of the best parts of the show was looking around at all the dudes that obviously came for Jay, but knew almost every Mary song. She really is the queen of Hip-Hop. Oh... and she is in pretty damn good shape right about now. She could get it...

And then there was Jay...

What can I say about this dude that hasn't been said? He's a great performer and definitely hasn't lost a step. And there is something almost electric about an entire arena throwing up the Roc and singing every song word for word. There was a point when Jay started to play about 20 different songs, just to reinforce the knowledge that he has more hits than anyone else.

Aside from the music, the most entertaining part of the evening was the audience. There were girls in freakum dresses galore... trying to climb up the stadium stairs and not fall, dudes in their Easter Church suits, 40 something white folks, and at least one 8 year old. Jay and Mary draw quite the eclectic crowd apparently...

Anyway, here are a couple more pics from the night... enjoy...

Oh yea The Dream opened... and sang 3 songs... and had dancers... doing things...(that's him in the white coat...)

Jay and Mary singing "Heart of the City"

Jay amid the flames...

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

So I've been thinking a bit lately and trying to figure out what exactly is my problem with a bunch of the music today. I was trying to do this objectively without any of the elitist bias that I subconsciously have. And to be honest, I'm not one of those folks that think that music was so amazing in the past and doesn't see any good in the stuff that comes out now. I actually do like a lot of stuff and if nothing else, being a broke teacher that's trying to find a get rich route himself, I respect hustle.

For that reason, I can appreciate someone like Soulja Boy for what he has done, but my problem comes from the lack of history and insight he and jokers like him have. These youngins get out of pocket like it's their job. Talking greasy about every one because you got a Grammy nod? Really? Since when are Grammy's hip-hop? Didn't Will Smith win one? And I don't see him getting invited to any ciphers any time soon. I understand that hip-hop is in many cases built off of machismo and such... but you need to know your place young fellow.

What am I talking about? From Soulja Boy's MTV News interview:
"I'm Grammy-nominated," he continued, citing his credentials. "If I look at the new list and I compare myself to all 10 of the artists and some don't add up, I'll be like, 'Wow. I should be #1 if it's right now. I'm #1."

Soulja Boy was more candid when asked how he ranks specifically against alumni of the first Hottest MCs list, like Weezy, 'Ye and Jay-Z.

"Right now, yes [I'm hotter than them]," he answered as their names were read to him one by one.

He said he is the best-selling online, highest-ranking on the Web and the most publicized rapper worldwide right now.

"Today, January — whatever the date this is — 2008, yes [I am the hottest]," SB emphasized.

Wow. I mean, I love the confidence, but really guy? See... this here is my problem, you get youngins like this, who really have no concept of what hip-hop is supposed to be, and they think they're hot. Maybe he's just a product of what hip-hop made, or maybe alledgedly failing 9th grade twice is part of it, but whatever it is... this mentality needs to stop. (You know its reckless when 8th graders are saying that he was talking out his neck) But maybe this a good thing for hip-hop... he is selling... ringtones... and he did make it on CNN:


(I'm mad that the CNN anchor calls him Soulja Boy Tell Me and that the chick who apparently knows a lot about him is Nigerian)

So this post wasn't supposed to be about Soulja Boy, but rather his brand of lazy music with no care for history. I present you with one of the many children of the Soulja Boy movement, the Pop It Off Boyz (putting the 'Z' at the end of things is still cool?) and their "hit" song "Crank Dat Batman" which I guess could be an homage to "Crank Dat Soulja Boy". (By homage I mean, we couldn't come up with anything ourselves) Soulja is apparently all for these by the way, and so is MTV it seems.

Besides the obvious lack of effort put into both the video and the song (note the obvious references to "Two Step" and "It's Peanut Butter Jelly Time" and the My First Casio beat), my biggest problem is the fact that the song asks it's listeners to "jigg". I thought we didn't have to do that anymore? So MTV can bleep out any and all references, made up or otherwise, to drugs, sex, certain consumer goods that they don't endorse, and other things that I didn't even know where bad, but they can't bleep out racial slurs? Or is it not as bad when a group of poorly educated (or maybe they're smarter than all of us and getting theirs) young men sing and tap dance it? Or maybe I'm just thinking too much.

Anyway... enough for now... enjoy:


And I'm sure I could be called a hater or maybe an idealist, but that would be too easy and counter productive, wouldn't it?

If you're looking for a cool video with some effort put into it: Erykah Badu's - Honey.