Wednesday, January 31, 2007

cuddle if you can

I am sitting her in my bed. My son is gone and baby girl is all snuggled up under me sleep, legs crossed and with her sippy cup in hand. It is as if she knows that it is cold and raining outside and that this is perfect cuddling weather. With her, head on my chest and her hair in my nose, it made me smile and realize how important cuddling is as an act of unconditional love and affection.

It also made me wish that I had someone to cuddle with or wanted to cuddle with me just as much as she did. Especially on a cold and raining Saturday night in Georgia. I say all of this to make one point: for those of you who do have children, men included, snuggle and cuddle with them as much as possible and show them all of the warmth your heart can proffer. And for those of you lucky enough to have someone special in your heart that you crave and desire, then call them, ask them to come over, or call and tell them that you are coming over and that you miss their embrace and need to show them how they make you feel, before it is too late and they are gone from your life.

I will never give this up, cause right now, baby girl isn’t two years old yet, but I suspect, one day she will be too big to lay on top of me, with her hair in my nose, sleeping and clutching on to me like I am her pillow. They say it is suppose to snow down this camp sometime next week. Therefore, if you do not have anyone, use the pillows, I have six, and just keep the little ones close to you as much as you can.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

What is in a name?

As many of yawl folks know, I am from Memphis, Tennessee and I went to school at Morehouse. Over the years, I have meet alotta folks and it seems as if everybody I know or have met on a social basis has a nickname. Some of my folk, I don’t even know their real names. I have always bee called T, T-bone, or All-Mi-T. So today, I wanted to list the top nicknames of my boys and not in any particular order:

Blowfish (Anthony Smith) - Memphis
Poopsie (Lenord Guillory IV – got name 4 months in womb) - Morehouse
GrooveGod (Lonnie King jr.) - Atlanta
Cat Daddy - Memphis
Nonnac (John Cannon – cannon spelled backwards) - Memphis
Railhead (Lawrence Johnson) - Memphis
Mook-B (Dennis Butler) – Atlanta
Roulac (Harold Shaw Jr.) - Memphis

Putt (Jonny Mimms) - Atlanta
Tombstone - Memphis
Sammie Slick - Memphis
Four Eyed Bill - Memphis
Champ (Keith Bethany) – Memphis
Tony-Oh (Anthony Stringfield) – Atlanta
Hook - Memphis
Spoon (John Wesley Lawlah IV) – Morehouse
Pig (Jon Webb) – Morehouse
Go-Go (David Gordon) – Morehouse
Blunky (Shawn Welch) - Memphis
Red (Nate Robinson) – Morehouse

And for the record, you probably have seen all of these names in my books/stories.

Monday, January 29, 2007

I don’t need no man

I was driving in to the office today and I was listening to one of the local radio stations. They ask different questions everyday, and today’s topic was centered on why sisters say they don’t need a man or something to that effect. I decided to write on this not only because it peeked my curiosity but also because I forgot the essay that I wrote over the weekend at home under my bed. However, I will post it tomorrow.

I just wonder how many women, sisters in particular, feel that they do not need a man and why? For me, having a man if I were a woman would mean that I have the opposite of myself in male form. Just as the brain has two hemispheres that work opposite of each other yet in concert at the same time, this is what having a mate of the opposite sex would be to me. In addition, they would have to be my partner and my equal and completely devoted to the single picture that we contrive together. To say that one does not need a man says to me that this individual does not believe in the concert in family. After all fathers, brothers, and uncles are men and I suspect that women need them in their lives.

I guess the truth is that many of the women who say this never had a man in their family in the form of a father or husband. This means that some of us men have dropped the ball. It also says that many of these women, as children were probably taught and learned such from their mothers, who likely did not have a husband or a man in their life. In essences leading to generations of women growing up with this belief - they do not need a man. Which also means that if they do not know how to recoginize a man, they will never be able or know how to respect or treat a man, even their sons.

I would like to offer that women reconsider this. I mean you do need a man and we men need women. You can raise your children by yourself true, bout they would benefit from the presence of a man if you see it or not. And not just little boys, but little girls as well because they will be able to discern what a real man is from the role their father plays, if positively oriented toward the family, in their lives mean. Then they wouldn’t want no full or gangster or thug or even consider such as a man.

The real problem is that those women who say such confuse being able to provide and take care of themselves as the rationale for not needing a man – for they only see a man as a source of income. Which means, they never learned or saw what a man is, because his character, work ethic, judges a man and how he is able to show affection and love to his woman and children universally? But then again, I may be wrong, and it may just be that in order for a woman to be able to see the real value of a man, they must be happy with themselves first, and may have to deal with the issues and demons inside of them that select to suggest they do not need us – men, in the first place.

Friday, January 26, 2007

True meglomania

"There are some who, uh, feel like that, you know, the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is: Bring 'em on. We got the force necessary to deal with the security situation. “ - George W. Bush, July 2, 2003.

Bush Baby, can you just stop for a moment to realize that the U.S. will never be observed as an objective and honest party in Iraq. Is it impossible for you to learn from history? This is not the first time that a Western nation has attempted to install a government under the guise of imperialism. History shows us that the British were there for more than two decades and they had to eventually cut and run – just as we will.

We (US government) claimed we would bring an American democracy to the people of Iraq. We claimed such even though we knew the people of Iraq did not want or ask for an American style government. Now we see that it may take more than we have at our mental prowess to deal with the Iraq quandary. It is obvious that the current administration does not have any conception of solving this problem. I mean, how does sending an additional 21,5000 troops to Baghdad deal with the rot issue at have and better yet, how did the President come up with such a number as being enough to do the job when Former General Powell suggested you needed at least 500,000 to do the job correctly?

We cannot count on the ruling government we have established there to do the job. In all actuality, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki is no different from Saddam Hussein; after all, we built up Saddam like we have posted up Al-Maliki. The only difference is that the plan that he offers his people in the form of a democratically centralized government is not the plan of his nor the Iraqi people, but rather a US developed imitative. The current administration seems to miss the big picture. Money and troops will not lead us to a solution or a reduction of animosity towards the west, in particular the United States. We can see this from what we have failed to do in Afghanistan since we invaded the country in 2001(The White House will request an additional $8 billion from Congress for the war in Afghanistan).

Through al of this, we just get more dead folks. So far, 53 US troops have been killed in Iraq this month, many of which are in central Baghdad. Nothing is improving in Iraq and just this morning, a bomb killed 15 people and wounded 55 others in Baghdad's Friday morning pet market. Yesterday, Bomb killed at least 34 people in Baghdad and all of this while US military is heavily engaged with insurgents.

President Bush will be remembered for several things in the history books: 1) pre-emptive military action, 2) his US-led invasion of Afghanistan in 2001 and 3) Iraq in March 2003 and maybe even a military conflict with Iran before the end of the year. So do not be so quick to think these problems will go away with the addition of 21,000 more troops and a constitution in Iraq because we will be talking about and seeing this war and the others on television for at least the next decade, if not even more.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Pawns of the Game

I do not know where it started, but there are some of us so insecure and filled with vile thoughts, that we will do anything to hurt others. This is something that I would never expect to happen from a god-fearing and loving person, especially a parent.

I just want to know what is it about some men and women who would use their children to inflict pain on others. Yes, if the shoe fits wear it. Truth is that many of us, especially women, often have problems in relationships and with themselves to the point that they will use children to inflict pain on the other parent. I think this problem is more prevalent with women, but the question remains, why? Why would a woman use the love that a male parent has for a child as a weapon? Does she not know that it is the child that should come first and not herself? Some even go as far as to disrupt the child’s perspective of the other parent in an effort to make this occur. Still others use their children to get back at the other parent. I would never do such and have not. But I will not ever understand it. I will always support and encourage my children to love and never disrespect their mother's. But that's just me. But Others may and this terse essay is for them.

People, please, and men too, let us just love out children completely and honestly, and let them know all they meet love them. Otherwise, we will continue to see the degradation within our communities and we will have no one to blame but ourselves. In particular, if we know the other parent is a great, wonderful and loving parent. Maybe even more loving than we do. In the final observation, a relationship and its survival is based on each person meeting the needs of the other. If they are unmet, then leave, but please leave the children out of it.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Dear Mr. Crackerfied:

First I wanted to thank you for all that you have done in our community and to congratulate you on your success, prosperity and extreme wealth. I really wanted to thank you for the recent scholarship you awarded. I believe for a special student. The grand prize winner got a $1,000 scholarship, an autographed CD and poster and a pizza party for their whole senior class.

This money will go a long way to covering his/her tuition cost and maybe even books. It just bemuses me as to why or how you came up with that figure. Especially, you being the type of person that easily drops 5, 10, 20 or maybe even 50 stacks on a single night in Magic City or the Body Tap. Please, Mr. Crackeried, I am not trying to tell you what to do with your money but rather think about alternative means making it work for the audience, if you think 1,000 bills shows your commitment to the community you require guidance.

Mr. Crackerfied, I would also like to acknowledge you worldly accomplishment of addressing the UN on behalf of millions of thirsty Africans. I have traveled Africa extensively, and will be there again in April. This is truly a problem, along with other things that need not be spoken. But my query is why not things in your /our own backyard do. I figure one could just as easily fight gentrification, invest in the projects from which you came, and increase property value and pride. Mr. Crackerfied, you know the majority population will never do such for they do not care.

Mr. Crackerfied, why is it that you let your brain get distorted by your money and forget to be all that you can be. Why would you even think about taking any kind of residue on an airplane in a container straight of James Bond. With 117 million dollars left on your contract, surely you could aford to have the party waiting on you. I mean, not to mention, you were on your way home. Is it not possible to have the judgment, regardless of whatever the particulate was, to have that particulate at home waiting on you?

In closing, I just wanted to offer some advice, I know you are trying Mr. Crackerfied, but we have a lot of ground to make up and I figure rich and ultra wealthy folks like you got a role in this also. With all the money we get as a community Mr. Crackerfied, no reason none of us should not be having an annual income of at least 25K. Mr. Crackerfied, we are at war, and the only way we can do that is to think about the best way to empower our economic potential and educational prowess. What’s supporting one or two boys and girls club any where we are? That’s maybe less that some canary colored diamonds in a nigga mouth. Or start some after school programs, even if it’s just for the school we grew up in or the entire community? I figure that should not cost any more than one watch or Lamborghini or Rolls. Mr. Crackerfied, if you get the chance, dissolve that salt teen behavior, cause you don’t realize like I do, that we are at war and being such, I am just a scholar general, offering instruction to my solider.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

question of the day

This is for all the ladies, question, would you go out on a date with a married man u know is married?

And what does it say about you if u are in a relationship, or if u are not in a relationship?

Not the next door neighbor u grew up with, or your homeboy in town, but someone u met, and by date I mean drinks, strip clubs or out to eat?

Be honest, I'd like to know.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

ungrateful, selfish and lazy

Reflecting on the past week, it being the celebration of the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr., I was wondering what has occurred over the years since his death and the civil rights movement. In many respects, things have changed significantly, but at the same time thing have also stagnated. I just look at us today as a people, as men and women that are supposedly the keepers and protectors of our community.

However, it seems as if we no longer value the virtue and integrity affiliated with family values. We have become silent to the things that we ourselves tend to ignore and turn away from. In a letter from a Birmingham jail, Dr. King wrote, “We will have to repent in this generation not merely for the hateful words and actions of the bad people but for the appalling silence of the good people.” I take it he was saying that when wrong and evil things are being perpetrated for people to see at the group and interpersonal level, there is no different than doing bad or being evil and passing by such evil and doing nothing about it.

Today, this stagnation is more rampant than ever. Just today in my neighborhood, the first two stories on the radio were about two men hiring a landscaper to do lawn work and shooting him 5 times in an attempt to steal his truck and the other was about somebody driving their car through Greenbriar mall and dragging out an ATM machine.

These actions tell me that we have a bigger threat to our community than the traditional white man – us. We are ungrateful, selfish and lazy. We think that all that we have should be bestowed upon us whenever we desire such and that it should not require any work or effort on our behalf. We think of ourselves only and do not have the fortitude in our heart to think and treat others as we do ourselves. In many cases, we are mean without first considering being kind. Nowadays, our families, the ones that do exist, have to deal with obstacles such as these that were never magnified as such before.

Individually, we men no longer accept and love and cherish the responsibility of providing for or families, for loving and raising our kids and/or being faithful to our women. In fact, there are some of us who think that just because they got some loot in they pocket and can sing or rap, that such provides them the right to disrespect women and the unit relationships that stabilize our community. The women now are also in concert with such behavior, allowing these men to sway their fancy and relegating them to objects as opposed to vesicles that should be loved, honored and respected. However, such would require work and commitments of the heart to what are right versus what is wrong.

Dr. King also said, “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. This is one reason I will never allow anyone to silence my voice. I will always feel and be free to say what I feel and express to whomever, as long as it is honest and without a mean-spirit. I will also work hard for what I desire for my family. Some folks think that there is an inherent obligation for being provided for. I do not know where this comes from. I mean if you quit your job, can you actually tell them to keep giving you money for your rent and utilities and club money and they agree to such. Where are we and what have we become? I can only speculate but I do know, as the great man that started this rumination stated, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter."

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

They Can Sing and Dance Though

My boy posed a difficult question to me a few moments ago. He asked, what is the social state of college students these days? Do they care at all about political subject matter such as gas prices or the war in Asia (Middle East)? He asked because he indicated that he was not seeing or hearing about any students, especially African American college students fussing or protesting about anything.

I thought about this and instantly agreed. I could not provide him with an answer or any statement regarding the subject mater. Albeit I teach at a HCBU, and a medical school at that, I do not see any interest in anything other than selfish and personal interest. I have students that purport the disposition that since they are paying for their tuition, that they should be given a free ride and just passed. For some students, it appears that it is a burden and even offensive for an instructor or professor to give the readings and expect them to read them. I have even had students indicate that I give/gave too much work and that I likewise give to many readings, assignments and test. I even had a student indicate to me that she was not prepared to take her mid-term but was able to discuss thoroughly the show Flavor of Love as I was passing out the test.

I hope that something happens soon that makes people, especially these purported future leaders of the tomorrow develop to their full potential, or else we may be going back in time, maybe even to a point of slavery.
We already do the work of the KKK now as evidenced in most of or popular culture. So to answer my Folk’s question, I do not know Al-Veen, but like you said, they can sing, rap and dance though. :(

Friday, January 05, 2007

Not that Special to Care

I figure it is human nature to be kind and to show gratitude. When we as men come across those that do not, then we should immediately vacate the premises. It is not hard to be kind, especially to those that show, through their action, what others mean to them. Fathers should show this to their kids and wives and individuals should do this unconditionally.

However, there are some of us that would prefer to complain, bicker, fuss and berate others because we fail to recognize that we are what we are because of our action or in-action. These people will never have peace of mind. They will always be envious and jealous of others and incessantly select to blame others first for whatever without looking at themselves in the mirror. Specifically, they will blame and target those that are closest to them and who do whatever they can for them. Such people tend to be either incapable of love or afraid to love. Unfortunately, these people are selfish and are quick to state they do not care about anything. I feel sorry for these types of people for they will never be able to notice or see any blessings because they are never happy or satisfied.

They will never be able to accept and appreciate others for what they are or do because they do not see value in themselves. I say this to suggest that a good new year requires that we all should search our souls and hearts – if we have them. In addition, if we have those around us who cannot express their gratitude, appreciation and love to us, then they must go, for they will only bring us down. I was described by someone as “not being that special” to them. I am more than special to myself, too bad some other folks cannot see it – children excluded. Gifts of the heart are more important than materials purchased with money. In the long term, things dissipate but gifts of the heart linger own forever. Especially gifts that allow one to know they can depend on another when they need them, regardless of what it may be. So let’s start this new year right, let’s seriously search our souls, be honest with ourselves and others and remember, when we say mean and evil and vile things, we cannot take them back and they will server to show others how fucked up on the inside we really are.

I care though, about myself, others and my community and will forever do such.