Last Man Standing

I'll miss my friend.....

Today sucks for me. Along with half of our staff, my man Wendell's last day is today. On the work tip it sucks because my caseload is about to be crazy large without having the support I used to. On another tip like Red in Shawshank Redemption...I'll miss my friend. Though he's two years younger than me, Wendell is the oldest man I know. If you want to see a true Ravens fan he is it. This is the type of cat that you can tell was raised well. He always says those appropriate things for a given situation. "Sorry to hear about your loss", "You just can't give up." Whatever it is Wendell comes through like he's 50 years old to express his sentiments. When he isn't here I have to up my level of jokes on co-workers just so I don't lose my mind throughout the day. He's my only real competition in the football pool and my source of a good story every monday morning. This is a cat that sounds like John Witherspoon when he talks about the ladies, "Cutie pie". Lover of women with extra meat on their bones, my daily update on the NFL, and all around good guy. It sucks cause we actually went to training together for this job, in and out of state. I remember holding him down for lunch when they were screwing up his pay...a story he always brings up whenever someone questions my character in any way. Wendell is a good guy. I find it hard to focus on my increased workload and the fact that I am now the only man in the building thinking about missing dude. He actually was a client at one time who came up through our apprentice program and worked his way to being a valued member of the team. He was the example for clients. I'm young, but he was a member and that meant something to my clients. No more old man noises, no one to break down why THIS is the year for the Ravens and how our backfield of almost all pro-bowlers will run things. This is the longest either of us has been at a job (4 years) so this is the longest I've worked with a person. I'm sure he'll be cool and we'll keep in touch but knowing he won't be there to receive my next comment sucks. I don't want to work "for" anyone after this so it would have been nice to end out with him. He moves on and I have no "male" support. Doesn't sound like much, but there is a large difference when you are the only man in an office. The conversation is different as well as the perspective. So my fine friends raise your glasses to my friend.


Daddy wasn't there.........

Favorite T.V. father of all time...close second is Red Foreman...Dumbass!

I figure in the case study of my life I always have to look at the daddy relationship. I haven't spoken to my father in years. I haven't been in the same state as him since I was 3 or spoken to him in eight years.

I remember when I was elementary age he would call and talk to me every few months and send me things for some Christmas and birthdays. I used to think he looked like Mr. T back in the day. I remember the best gift he ever sent me being the bike I had until I got a ten speed (which didn't get much play). When I was young I didn't think much about him not being around because I would talk to him. Actually he didn't leave. See my mothers family is Bmore to the core. The only reason my fam lives on the east side is because they got tired of family stopping by all the time on foot (most of whom reside on the west side). So after High School my mother joined the Air Force and ended up in San Antonio, Texas (Andrews Air Force Base in Bexar [bear] county). This is where she met him and where I was born. They were only married for a few years and ended up divorced. Not long after my mother moved back to Baltimore with me and the saga began. Now for a child the year tends to drag until it hits birthday and x-mas. For me it was longer cause my birthday is Nov. 29th (Partially pissing me off...get rid of the Turkey and hold off on them decorations dammit, it's my birthday!!!). So as I child I looked forward to him sending me a gift. I remember in Elementary school he had called me and (I understand now) looking for validation from me. I was a child and wanted to ask about X-mas gifts. He got pissed off and hung up on me. Even now that I understand what he wanted, I know it was foolish to look for it in a child over the telephone. So eventually I hear from him again and I'm negotiating next gift. I was going to ask for some money...my mother asks how much and I say $100.00. She tells me to ask for $200.00 cause he'll only send me half of what I ask for. I got so mad with her! I thought how could she just write off my father like that. So I make the call and for some reason (she wasn't wrong before) I follow her advice. In the cop-out-I-don't-know-voice he explains that he can only send $100.00. Fucked me up. I hated that she was right about that. More important it was the first step in revealing a flawed man where I didn't have too strong of an image before. The only other significant contact was sending him a picture and he wrote me and said he was pissed that I didn't look like him. Years passed and I started hearing less and less from him. It didn't bother me as much at the time unless I actually thought about it. I was getting into girls, Hip-Hop, weed, and writing my name on walls. I will say it did bother me when I would catch say movies or shows that dealt with the subject matter. I always wondered how a man could not strive to know his first child and only son. The other thing that began to bother me was knowing, not so much that he was dealing with white women, but the fact that that's ALL he dealt with after my mother. My half sisters mother is white and the only other women he would bring up were too. I started getting this image of one of those guys who says shit like, "I just can't deal with black women...they're too demanding." So anyway time passes I graduate...without a call or anything. Now I'm at Morgan...(M.S.U.! I chilled under the bridge not on it), and I come home to a message asking me to call him at a specific time. I do and get no answer. The next day I come home to the same message and the note that he "didn't feel like being bothered". That pissed me off, but I tried again...same result. All in all I tried three times and what closed the deal was him leaving a message that "it was on me and he wouldn't try anymore". This was the first time that I remember cursing in front of my mother. "Fuck him, ma." I'm you're only son and that's what it comes down to? I figured I was 18 and moving to manhood...the lessons he should have taught me were too late. Besides he couldn't teach me much about keeping up with my responsibilities, could he? I believe that one shouldn't hold on to strong negative feelings, but I hate him. He represents something I can't stand. It would have been one thing to never know him at all, but to not try and reach out to me more? I'm you're only son...the extension of you, your legacy in the world. Because of this I could never leave a child in this world feeling about me how I feel about him. It would kill me to be apart from a child of mine. I'd be that guy in court fighting or getting dragged away cause a court order said I can't see my child. More important than that this is why I want a family. The weekend shit would kill me. I want to be there at the end of the day. I want to be one of those "big piece of chicken fathers" who says things like tell your mother the food was good. One of those fathers who is a used as a threat and one who suggests things you're not supposed to do and makes you keep quiet when your mother finds out. I can say that I wouldn't know what to do if my father would pop up one day. Would I starting cussing him out or just deck his ass. Maybe I'd cry...and then deck his ass. I can think of a lot of feelings but not as many words for him (there's that wiping people away again). All I know is I can't be him. I refuse to. I think the worse part about situations like this is I'll forever feel like something is missing. As if there is something I don't know about myself. I know shades of him reside in me, but I don't know him. On a lighter note I hope he doesn't go bald...I'd hate to have a bald spot in the middle of my locks.



If I could paint a picture write a scripture you would understand/Package it with pretty things and put it in your hand....

Since elementary school I have been a writer of one form or another. Never good at math, I always liked the thought that words could carry people away from where they are. Later in life I loved even more how words could describe where you are emotionally. While I enjoy writing myself...I remain interested in the writings of others. Even on this blog when I write something I like, I tend to be more interested in the comments others will leave. I love to gain insight from what people will say especially in reference to something I have written. Hip-Hop taught me to never compromise what you want to say. If everyone is thugged out and I have a love song...rock that shyt. Even in the realm of coorespondence I take care. When ever I write a letter I break out my caligraphy set (I knew tagging would pay off!!! - take that graffitti removal unit!) and parchment paper...hell I even have a wax seal kit to finish it off. So as I mentioned before (if briefly) I have every letter given to me by a woman in my life (well most of them). At first it was an ego thing I guess, sort of a thrill to have someone speaking highly of me in writing. Now, I try to learn from them. My only regret being that I don't have any letters that speak ill of me. The thing I have began to notice is how people have written to me and the method they used. The only typed letter I have seems cold, while those on special paper seem to have taken the most care. The funny part is that I know now most of these people don't think about or really don't like me right now. I always get a kick out of the changes in your relationships with people...from love to hate. I'm waiting to get into something with someone I hate but knowing my personality I would never do that. It would have to get real heated. Now my problem is that I don't feel I'm gaining insight from peoples good thoughts about me. I also don't have the minerals of Humanity Critic . You won't see me asking shit from any Ex of mine. But perhaps that's part of my problem. I tend to wipe people from the face of my imagination. I am not the type of person who is friends with an old flame. So I wonder alot of times why I bother to keep these letters. I don't read them often and the good things that they say are repeated so I recognize my attributes from them. I tell my self that once I am with someone I'll burn them all and put them into the air. I have begun to question the purpose of keeping these. What do I gain from having them and what will it really represent when I destroy them. Will I free myself and in that case am I chaining myself to these words now? Am I placing improper importance in them? It's especially weird for someone who wipes people away. I think perhaps that's part of my problem. I guess it's hard to maintain something when you are willing to wash away the thought of it so quickly. The thought had crossed my mind yesterday that pehaps I need to fight for something. I consider myself a prize and I also want someone who knows that they are. So if the other person is a prize perhaps I shouldn't be willing to let them walk away. I always write so wonderfully but those ideals always seem to fall short in life. I can express myself in the most beautiful ways but I don't often do so until it's over. I send the most wonderful letters that express the intentions I had. I think I love my melancholy too much. I often say pain doesn't hurt, but that only applies well to physical pain. I think I have a habit of brushing off hurt and just refusing to feel it. Listening to Sade does not equate to dealing with my pain. Perhaps I should ask questions of some ex-girlfriends. Perhaps I should break down the walls. I hate looking back in all honesty...I know we learn from our past and I assume there may be something I just refuse to acknowledge. I'm starting to think I should get something besides good song lines from my past relationships...not that I won't use them for material anymore.


Nothing Ever Goes....

...according to plans. All roads and rivers bend.

"Things go astray fall apart changes of heart/
Good intentions miss the mark from sure aims to start/
Used to love it in time you feel stuck with it/
Abruptly quit people start things and don't finish/
Heroes become sinners, traitors come true/
Losers eventually win others forget what they knew/
Plans change party clothes are ruined with blood stains/
Stars gain fame then folks forget their name/
Treachery maintains - good men lay slain/
Out of love and happiness comes the most pain/
hope aims meanwhile despair blurs vision/
Children repeat what you shouldn't say thought they didn't listen/
Lose position change status reassess what matters/
Lovers come together families torn to tatters/
Some realize some don't some pretend/
Some people nourish grudges while others make amends
This is a song, like a lot of others that I wrote and I understood it. When subject matter comes to life it seems I'm not ready for it. I have always been the type of person to quietly handle a situation because I know my emotions run to extremes. I have always been able to push my feelings aside and just deal with the situation at hand. This does nothing for the aftermath of said situations. I always want the best outcome and when I don't get it, a brick sits on my stomach. I recently had a situation and it makes me wonder...is this what Einstein felt? He made discoveries and advanced theories only to see his work contribute to the Atomic Bomb.
What's the recourse when the road takes detours/
Castles made of sand get washed from the seashore
After a situation has passed and I have expended my energy in the best way I can, I am often plauged by the results. At least the part of it that is now out of my hands. The way other people feel. Most people (myself included) only really remember the negative in a situation. Good feelings are easily washed aside, while bad ones linger for longer. Even when you can wash away the feeling, the memory stays with you if only as a lesson. In the corner, the deep pit of that memory is a portion of that bad feeling. My bad feeling is always attached to those of others. It is so much easier for me ignore the negative that happens to myself, but that which happens to others is an aftertaste I can't get rid of. It's in my nature to want the best for those around me. I love to leave others with a good feeling so when I leave someone who doesn't deserve it in any kind of confusion or turmoil, it does not sit well with me.
Sample the sweet but keep it low and discreet/
In the midst of Triumph grows the seeds of defeat/
Opposites attract what you give you get back/
Good intentions can't account for how recipients react
Many negative things start from a good place. The true concern is what happens to that good place. I have always believed it's not so much what happens, but how you react to it. Once my reaction is over things are no longer in my hands. The bane of my existence has been the feeling that people don't really know who I am. This is the only thing that bothers me in life. The paradox has been that you shouldn't worry about what people think about you, however, what people think will affect you in some way. You can press on but in some fashion you still have to deal with those outcomes. My problem is I am rarely in a situation where I have to leave things in the hands of others. I find no comfort in not being able to directly change a situation. Even when I stand up straight and take what comes, the feeling still sits heavily with me. As a rule I don't let my bad feelings out on other people. I don't like to expose the negative in me. It kills me to have negative that's around me effect others. I love to creaty beauty so to be at the center of chaos is horrid for me. The knowledge that there is only so much I can do bothers me more. I always manage to see a plan a way to break through a bad situation. Not to have that vision leaves me in an akward place. Still, I have to try. I have to put out some type of effort to make change in a bad situation.
Truth comes to light fate strikes from spite/
it only takes one moment to change your whole life/
Problems with mics breaking up your insight/
Truth in your heart that gets stuck in your windpipe/
Blocked by good intentions so they never see the daylight/
But plot twists rise to smite the pens of playwrights/
leaving things unsaid to spare someone else/
Under a guise of kindness you only sparing yourself/
In hard times friends may offer you help/
But failure abounds til you first help yourself/
Hold dreams til they're dust slipping right through you hands/
Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans/
Fail to plan and you plan to fail/
When the path bends gotta blaze new trails/
Can't let the course change still the wind from you're sails/
Sometimes your trapped it seems without escape/
Then again if it's been rough you just might get a break/
Make yourself and let the circumstance make you/
The latter is a breakdown the first is a breakthrough/
Every river bends things come to an end/
Leaves fall play the wind and join the earth again/
It's up to all of us to take fate in our hands/
That said nothing ever goes according to plans
I know that time washes away bad feelings, but it doesn't always change the situation. I can deal with feelings, I just may not want to. I can think of plenty of cliches about these circumstances, but the only thing that stands out is a corny movie title. Learning to Deal. That's my problem. I don't like to sit in the bad feeling. I know things don't go according to plan...when they go wrong that advice doesn't seem to matter.



...the same thing we do everynight.

I'm out of the office most of the day friday so enjoy this. It's something I hold dear to my heart and study often.



Is this the answer?

So I like to keep up with politics and in response to questions about energy sources and the environment, our esteemed dumbass (the president) wants to look into using coal more. WTF?!?!? Coal? Coal? This is the wave of the future. That stuff that used to be used in trains (producing the large billowing cloud of black smoke behind it)? You've got to be kidding me? How does this help the environment? Furthermore one of the things behind this is that oil is a finite resource...so coal is infinite? I am a constant contender that G.W. is one of the stupidest people who has ever played a hand in determining our fates, but coal? It's even called the FutureGen Initiative. Instead of looking into solar power or using water or even exploring cold fusion we are going to power our future with coal. Perhaps I'm crazy, maybe that's what the problem is. It seems to me that I recall Coalminers being the dudes who took the canary with them because there was a danger of the gas in the air killing them. I know for a fact that silicosis is health problem that coal miners had to risk. But c'mon, I could have went along with everyone switching to woodburning stoves or putting our batteries in the refrigerator. Think of it this way...fossil fuel is the wave of the future. That doesn't even sound right. Bush, it's time for you to meet my friends, I call them dark alley and bag of nickels. Even worse is the fact that GE has followed up with a commercial promoting this. Filled with images of sexy model types in a coal mine like that shit is fun! The salt in the wound is the fact that they are playing Hank Williams' Sixteen Tons in the backround. That could be one of the worst ways to use that song. For those who don't know...the song describes, in part, how coal miners were basically indentured servants. Peep the chorus...

You load 16 tons and whaddaya get??
another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter don'tcha call me 'Cause-
I can't go...I owe my soul to the Company Store

The best I could equate this to would be me going to a ceremony in honor of the folks who died at The Alamo and playing the Deguello. Also known as "The Cutthroat Song" (actually a favorite of mine). This what the Mexican Army played at the Battle of the Alamo...it means there will be no quarter, no mercy shown to the losers. If you don't recall everyone at the Alamo was killed. I have other beefs on this choice of song per commercial topic but I'll let it rest for now.

I know that people in positions of power often have "Yes" men around them, but I hope someone stood up in that meeting and challenged this idea. If someone is sane they explained that thinking of the future is not moving towards things that we have been moving away from. That's not Sankofa. At least someone gave hima WTF look and walked out of the room shaking their head. Coal? Coal! No matter what punctuations I follow that up with I can't get it to make sense for me. I know Bush is stupid but the fact is I'm hearing this is being supported. I keep looking up information to see if I'm just biased but I can't find a good reason to justify this initiative. COAL!?!?!

Shots Rang out

It's funny how something you can that's easy to look at can become scary from a different perspective.

Lot's have people have had some sort of incident involving a gun. Having never been robbed and blessed to I owe thanks to a stickup boy.

Summertime, 1996. I had graduated from High School and was about to go to Morgan. I can't remember what did it but I had started hanging around my way again. Derrick (who many a sister from Baltimore still thinks is my brother) was my wingman during this time. His cousins were infamous hustlers, killers and any other crime you would associate with the hood. Derrick, because of their rep, was left alone. He was more artisitic anyway. To this day he is one of the best DJ's I ever met and one of the dopest grafitti artists as well. One day we are about the way doing the block thing. Him, Gary, Steven, and myself had been kickin' it all day. The evening was just falling and somehow we got seperated from Steven. After about 15 minutes we get bored and decide to go find him. I'm not sure what the motivation was but someone suggested we run up to the main street, Harford Rd. When we get there it looks like Steven is in an heated debate with someone. Around this time there was a (piss-poor) Pictureman who had taken residence on Harford and Broadway. Words are going back and forth. Apparently Steven was messing around with this girl from the way who was always up there. The dude with him (playing along) jumped in the middle and was holding him back. It seems like the picture man's brother thought that Steven was trying to get out on him. So Steven, the third dude and the picture man are basically going over the situation. Steven is saying it was a misunderstanding and the picture man is coming from the "my brother don't play". I don't remember why but Derrick had a stick in his hand when we came on the scene. As we are figuring out what the deal is, the Pictureman's brother walks by with his boy and ask Derrick what he's going to do with that stick. I guess he figured that we were coming to back Steven up. Honestly, we knew nothing of what was going down until it was explained to us. So here we all are standing on the corner thinking everything is cool now and it was a misunderstanding that has been resolved. People are still talking about what went down when I notice dude and is man are standing on the cusp of the alley doing...something. I let it go. We all start trying to come up with something to do for the rest of the night as the two assholes in question begin back up the block. Derrick always had a sixth sense and his astute nature is one reason I have never been robbed. I can count the times that something was going to go down and he peeped it out beforehand and put us in a position to do something about it. Derrick just can't take his eyes of these dudes and that is making me look. For some reason we didn't notice the two dudes crossing the street on an intersect course with asshole A and B. Suddenly one of the latter two grabs the picture man's brother by his shirt, throws it over his head (on some Happy Gilmore) and snatches his chain. To further date this his chain was a Rolex, this is right before they became popular and his was the first I ever saw. Next thing I know dude pulls down his shirt and starts letting off at these cats. We break out across the street and head up into Wendy's. Everyone is like WTF!?!?! So we start breaking down what happened and I realize, dude went into that alley to load his joint. The bullets in that gun had most likely been intended for Steven and the rest of us. The messed up part about this was dude was a grown man. If we had all started fighting they would have had the upper hand. Instead dude grabs his tool. I don't know about the rest of you, but as a fan of westerns I believe two things about guns; you never pull it out unless you intend to use it and you never give another person you're loaded gun. The realization came over us that the bullets that were humming past that stickup boy would have come in our direction if not for that Rolex chain. I still to this day have never been shot at. That is as close as I have come to it. I know I was being looked out for. From this experience I took a few lessons. 1)Be mindful of stupid people (dude who pumped up the situation by playing around). 2)People are ignorant and will resort to gun play for nothing. 3) Alway pay attention to what Derrick is seeing. Needless to say the Pictureman got no more business and his brother was not seen in the area after that. Good for him cause Derrick's cousins wouldn't take to kindly to something of that nature.


Down Time

If I could be like the Soup Nazi...I would deny people air.

I am turning into a Seinfeld character. Similar to someone with improper conduct in the soup line I am being denied. What is it that I am seeking? Intelligence in other human beings, a little common courtesy, for common sense to become common again. I am considering becoming either a hermit or a lounge singer in a foreign country. I can develop a catalog of originals and do covers, besides women don't scream and throw panties at emcees (though one of my goals was to make this happen). What's all the fuss. The world still isn't what I want it to be. I was out yesterday and this sista who is a graphic designer was letting me listen to this girl's C.D. which was crap. I also had to attend a training for my job, which was crap. I realized that the world is poisoning me. I was once light hearted and carefree. Now the radio is crap, most t.v. is crap. I have come up with more ways to say something is bad than I would have ever imagined. It's even spreading to my mother! I have her talking about how things suck! I'm not sure how many things I have called craptastic in the last 24 hours. That being said: since I cannot avoid contact with executive directors and adults in general this is my plan. First, I'm going to talk to myself more. I like my sense of humor and I have good ideas so, why not. I tend to make sense and when I don't the debate isn't that long anyway. Second, I'm going to talk to Wendell more. My co-worker/the oldest man I know(2 years younger than me), Wendell is a constant source of entertainment. For instance: We go into the local coffee shop and I get a Frozen Mocha. On our way out (half talking to me and half out loud) Wendell comments on how the girl behind the counter is a "cutie-pie" similar to John Witherspoon in Boomerang. Not to mention the noises he makes when he stands up, his devotion to the Ravens and the sexual harrassment he is enduring at the hands of one of our clients. The other day she was talking about how she was waiting for this guy to come home from jail, but before he does she said she was going to "have" Wendell at least once. Wendell explains that as staff he can't associate with her in such a manner. Well she knows that they plan to cut his position on June the 30th. She let him know she would see him then. My last activity will be the increase of giving out nicknames to clients and passerby on the street. Mayhap it's wrong but I love it. Besides it's revenge for the fact that people never seem to be able to say my name correctly. College educated people who don't know how to pronounce words. What's worse is that I send emails and in the reply people will spell my name incorrectly. C'mon it was on my email and in the signature! So henceforth individuals will be dubbed with the title of my choice. If I can't be creative people are getting general things like assmaster and so forth. Luckily The African American Heritage Festival is this weekend. I also have to grab my man at Dulles. Any occupation of my time is a good thing. I'll get some good shows in and it's a payweek unlike the last two years. Going to festivals broke sucks! If anyone has any ideas on enriching my enjoyment of life I'm open. I'm telling ya'll I'll just vanish and pop up in Rio de Janerio as a popular lounge singer.


Spilling My Guts

Crutball Tactics (I swear I'm really a good person...honest, ask my mama.)

I watched Goonies yesterday, one of my favorite movies of boyhood. When it came to the scene where the Fratellis threatened to put Chunks hand in the blender if he didn't "spill his guts" (he summarily told them every bad thing he had done in his whole life), I thought perhaps I should do the same. So here is a list of my most PussPuss Succubus moments. (PussPuss Succubus - Meaning the cruddiest you can be. Puss being a substance that appears amidst infection and Succubus a demon (female, but not for our purposes) that leads men to eternal damnation).

1) The Tack - In the sixth grade there was this guy in my class named Henry. Henry was the type of guy that people made fun of - alot. He had a speech impediment and eternally looked like his clothes weren't ironed and hair wasn't combed. Well one day I put a tack on his chair. He sat on it AND got in trouble for the noise he mad. I felt bad, one because I never used to do things like that, two because he got in trouble for being a victim and three we were two of the 4 black boys in that class (this one bothered me more later - Amadeo bringing another brother down- god damn).

2) The Punch - Growing up I lived with 5 females including my younger cousin shown here. Now despite the fact that she could cry on cue and got me into trouble many times I have commit crud against her. One day while (I didn't realize this til later) her mother was having a serious family meeting in the living room, we were in the kitchen with a younger female cousin. Tasha decides to teach our cousin how to fight. She's showing her some wild ass-please-beat-me-up-type swings. So I step in to correct the situation. I, by mistake, hit Tasha for real. She gets mad puts her head down and charges me. On reflex (I swear), I threw up my hands and gave her a straight jab to the forehead. The surprising thing is it hurt her more than me. She dropped her hands, stood straight up, started crying and walking away. I spent the next five minutes trying to occupy our younger cousin who tried to tell on me. Since there was a serious conversation going on no one would listen to her.

3) Student Government - I'll start by saying I don't feel bad about this. I was the Parlimentarian for the S.G.A. in High School. It was my job to keep order (which I didn't know til the end of the year). I was the lone source of disruption in ALL S.G.A. meetings. The true crud was that I used that position to cut school. We all had I.D. cards to show that we were in S.G.A. and my school used to do "hall sweeps". Basically they would close the gates and have administrators go through the halls suspending everyone who was out without a pass. I would walk through the herded suspendees, show my I.D. and say I'm doing an errand for S.G.A. Then I would promptly leave the building for the day.

(Top left corner lies the culprit- my locks were short, my crud was long.)

4) Hustle Kid. I have never given an account of my hustle man/criminal tactics, but I have plenty stories. For instance I sold Bidis, if you don't know bidis are tobacco wrapped in ebony leaf and if you never smoked one they give you a temendous buzz. These things cost a dollar a pack (twenty in a pack). Everyone didn't know about them and the word began to grow about these "weed sticks" that certain people had (I am legendary in Bmore for bidis and clove cigarettes). People started approaching me and offering to buy them at a dollar each and I obliged. I spent a $1 and made $19 per pack. I also cornered the market on Hall Passes. Since I was in the S.G.A. I spent alot of time in and out of the office and had access. I also came across some carbon paper and the signature of Ms. Kim (a Korean math teacher with a thick accent). I later refined my signature forging process but I got alot of people out of class for long time - for a fee of course.

5) The Prankcall. To friends of mine from around the way used to do prank calls. They were so good that they made up a voice and a character to go with it. Henry. They had henry beefing with 3 dudes and talking to 4 girls. Every know and again they would call me and get a number from me of someone I no longer gave a damn about to pull a prank on. One day I gave them the number of a guy in the next block I used to hang with. When we were even younger he had gotten arrested for antics in the local Bus Yard and his mother had kept him on lock since. So they call the guy and his mother picks up the phone. She explains that he is not there and "Henry's" response is, "Smoke up all my damn weed, alright have a good day." Needless to say dude's mother did not appreciate that.

6) The System. I was the Ultimate cheater. I have devised a system to cheat on every kind of test ever given in school. I have cheated on everything from a regular class assignment to a final exam. My current wingman will admit that I got him through several classes from 8th grade to graduation. Despite being a top student, I used my powers for evil. I would exploit a teachers weakness (one liked to talk about current events so whenever I didn't feel like doing work I would bring up something from the news and get her to talk through the entire class). I even did not complete my final exam for accounting, spent the time helping others and still passed with a grade in the upper 90's. I was smart, but I conned more teachers into passing me than a little bit. I practiced my tagging skills via my classwork and even if teachers didn't understand it they passed me and left notes like "write clearer". B.T.W. for all school age people look out for my upcoming book "Beating the System: The Amadeo Way. I'm currently working on a version for post-school life.

7) Sex. I will note that I feel bad about this. The summer after I graduated I went crazy with the ladies. I don't know about all men, but I got the baton and ran with it. That is the period of my life in which I had them most sex with the most women (most of them were older) in the shortest span of time. I'm talking working one this week and starting another the next week. I literally had a 5 day turn around time. Anyway, what I had never had was an actual "girlfriend". We either talked or had sex. This sister becomes interested in me and people let me know. I pursue, I win her over, I have sex with her - I promptly lose all interest. The problem was I did not expect it! I tried to avoid her for a while until she approached me and told me what the deal was. I tried to deny and say I had been busy, but she was wiser than I. I had not been in that situation yet and didn't check my intentions vs. hers and that created a bad situation. This was how I learned to check myself before stepping into something.

8) Slick Time. I have taken sick days over the course of my employment. Honestly I don't think I have ever been sick for any of them. I have been sick of work and ironically I have come to work on most of the days that I was actually sick. I don't feel bad about this, it is kind of cruddy though.

9) Conferences. For my job I have had to attend several conferences and I will say this - Adults who work with young people are some of the most horny people I have come across. They say what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, well for this brand what happens in (fill in the blank) stays in (fill in the blank). I will say I did not take advantage of all of the opportunities I had on these trips, which may have been a mistake, but I did lush out on all of them. In Leesburg I got to know all of the bartenders personally and had an unspecified number of drinks everynight. In Dallas, my sink turned into a bar and I had people in my room everynight. If someone looked tired the next day, they had probably been in my room. I am the corruptor. My reason for not sleeping with anyone in Dallas was a result of principle. The girl that was trying to go was married and I couldn't do that....O.K. I did drunk dial another sister who I knew was down, but she was either sleep or I had the wrong room.

10) Giving Back. So perhaps you have read this and know all about my tale of unrequited love. As time passes I feel like what I did with the last sister in this post was jive cruddy. Yes she did have a boyfriend. Yes I felt shitty about the whole thing. I think I knew that when I went to give her back her letter and the necklace she gave me that her boyfriend would be there and it would cause drama. At the time I didn't care in the least. I know that deep down that wasn't what I really wanted to happen. The worst part is I really couldn't give up the letter. This is the first time I admit this but I have a every letter ever given to me by a woman. I made a copy of hers and I have it to this day. I tell myself that when I feel like I'm going to be with someone for real, for real - that I'll burn the stack. I know that this was a cruddy thing I did with her, especially considering that I only really gave it back for effect. I have never done anything like that since and would be embarrased to do it again.


Crazy - Deranged

I'm going sane, the world is crazy.

Perhaps some of you think I'm as nutty as a fruitcake. You're probably right. I have issues, but for the record I'd like to state that it's the people who don't admit it that you have to watch out for.

1) I hear shit. I don't mean voices, but noises. Part of the problem is I have excellent hearing. The other part is every backround noise reminds me of my name or my doorbell. I get up 5 times an hour and just listen to see if I'm crazy or someone is at the door.

2)Self disagreements. I have mentioned that I laugh out loud for reasons only I know. I've also probably mentioned that I talk to myself. What I may not have said is that I argue with myself. I get into all types of disagreements with myself on a regular basis. Outloud. I'm saying sometimes you gotta work things out.

3)Grand Theft Auto. Maybe I'm not the only one, but after I play this game I often have to remind myself that I can't just hop out of my car and jack someone if I have an accident. I also have to remind myself to obey lights and traffic laws. Then I remember that I actually pay money for my car and insurance and things of that nature. If my ride had nitros I would be in real trouble.

4) I zone out. Maybe it's not that unusual. In the car, on foot, at my desk, in the house. I just zone out. I am a thinker, sometimes it just happens at the wrong time. I remember being in a large conversation and my man used a metaphor about "breaking the glass". I don't know what he was talking about, but I started explaining the process of making glass and how it happens naturally when lightning hits the beach. Some people thought I was deep, close friends just stared at me.

5) I am paranoid. Not "somebody's after me paranoid" but do I have my keys paranoid. People think fashion is the reason I have the chain on my wallet, nah - This way I just have to feel for the chain. My keys are also attached to my belt loop. I still do about 20 pocket checks per day. Pen, lighter, money, knife...it's a sickness, I know.

6)Accents. Sometimess....I speak in different accents. My favorites are "The Southern Gentelman" and "Soccer Hooligan". I usually do it on purpose but sometimes I just trail off and realize that people are looking at me funny because I'm doing the accent again. I can't help it, I like it.

7) My hair reflects my mood. Know this, my hair is an untamed weed. It lives on it's own I just wash it and give it things to help it grow. On certain days I have three joints in the front that just stick up in the air. Everyone seems to hate this, but I usually feel off on those days and I think my hair is just announcing the fact for me. Imagine a cross between Lil' John and Alafalfa.

8) I need to drink. Not booze mind you but a beverage. I have eaten 1 actual meal this week. I can go for days without actually eating. I need to drink though. I will kirk out if I come in the house and don't have something to drink. I consume about 1 and 1/2 gallons of liquid a day...at least.

9) I revel in getting customer service representatives to say things outside of their script. I make all sorts of attempts I ask outside questions and crack jokes. I don't know what the motivation is, but I find ultimate satisfaction when I get them to leave the script.

10)I am obsessed with Wyatt's (Peter Fonda) shirt in Easy Rider. I have wanted to come across a shirt like that for quite a while. I do web searches, I check out Western stores. One day it will be mine, oh yes. It's like my holy grail. If anyone knows what the style is called please let me know. PLEASE. My life will be much easier.


Making the Workplace Fun

Anyone who tackles idiots in the office is my hero!

I have jury duty today so here is something fun for those at work.

Since most of us don't have Terry Tate Office Linebacker It's imperative that we find ways to enjoy the work experience. These are helpful hints for the working class stiff. **Disclaimer - I recommend either being a valued employee or just not giving a damn about your job before you attempt any of this. A combination of both is great.**

1) Random laughter - At various times during the day I just burst out laughing and I don't tell anyone why. I have been known to do this in 5 min. bursts. It doesn't help that I sound like a cross between The Count and The Joker. When people get annoyed...I laugh louder.

2) Throw things - This is a random thing. Ex: I'm walking through the office and someone is writing something, I grab the pen from their hand and toss it across the room. I also do this with papers that people are reading, basically anything that won't break. If they are looking at something on the table I push it into the floor.

3) Blasting music - Sometimes this won't work cause people may like your music. I recommend playing things like: Tom Jones - She's a Lady, Skid Row from the Little Shop of Horrors soundtrack, or Robert Newman's -Short People (got no reason to live). If your office hates rock...Ironman by Black Sabbath. I also like to play Comedy C.D.s.

4) Make light of your co-workers flaws - One of my co-workers is on a diet so everytime I'm going out and she asks me to grab her a cookie or something I crack on her about her addiction to sweets. "Yo, yo just let me get one choclate chip...it be calling me son." This will vary with each co-worker but the more they hate their flaw the more fun you can have with it.

5) Inter-office prank calls - I love to find something about a co-worker then call from a different extension in my best white man voice and act like I'm talking business about it (student loans, any type of debt is great). Even better is to have someone call from outside of the office and harrass someone. A good one was my boss having her friend call (as a miscellaneous woman) and say she had been checking me out. The problem was instead of being embarrassed I suggested we go have lunch. It would have been good, if I had been shook.

6) Computer Backrounds - There is nothing worse than getting up to do something and coming back to your computer and the backround is changed to something like this. Know the limit...I however go to the abyss - Darkness muthafucka!

7) Offensive Screensaver - I prefer the saver in windows that lets you type in text and then choose how fast to make it spin. People see it and have to find out what it says. Too bad for them mine reads, "Read me loser". It's one of those things were you shouldn't have been bothering with it anyway so you feel stupid when you get insulted by it.

8)Where am I? - We have on of those boards with each staff members name on it and a magnet you can slide to an In or Out Column. I like to leave mine in the middle and in the comments section I wrote, "Physically here, mentally....".

9) Rubber bands - This is too easy. I had my boss order me a bag of rubber bands in a Staples order. Every now and again one of them mysteriously flies across the room and hits someone. I insist that it's an equipment malfunction.

10) Creative use of soundfiles - This depends on your circumstance and ability to acquire sound files. For example: One day a co-worker found cause to wear a totally pink out fit. For the rest of the day when she walked into or past my office the theme from the "Pink Panther" cartoon started playing. A client wore some plaid pants that looked like a picnic table cloth and was introduced into the room by "The Teddy Bears Picnic".

Just a few helpful hints...plus I don't want to give anyone an idea that might be too bad. I've got seniority and what not so I do some shit at work. Have fun while I sit and courtroom refusing to send someone to jail!


Bmore 101

Whatever you do don't touch the water!

Considering that a blog lets people know about me and what's on my mind, I figure it's good to enlighten folks on the nature of my environment. For the uninitiated this is Bmore 101, trynot to look like a tourist and don't embarass me.

Half and Half - This has nothing to do with Coffee. Since it's warm out this is something you might want to get to cool down. A Half and Half is basically half Lemonade and half Iced Tea. This is the nectar of Baltimore. Any place worth it's salt will sell you a Half and Half (usually found where Chicken Boxes are available). I used to think they sold these everywhere, but people always talk about coffee when I mention a Half and Half. In San Diego they call it an Arnold Palmer (at least in that one place). Let me know if ya'll have this and what you call it.

Hack - I once ruined the mindstate of a girl from D.C. by catching one of these. I avoid being on either end of one these days...good policy. A hack (invented cause black men and Taxi Cabs have issues) is when you walk to the curb and stick out your index finger. Then the first civilian driving by that wants to make some money pulls over, picks you up and takes you where you need to go. Needless to say trouble can come from either end of this deal but it operates on a trust factor. Many hacks may want money upfront and smart young black man will hold the money in their hand when flagging the hack as a show of good faith. Bonus: For 20 points can you guess which member of the Wu Tang is currently hacking in Bmore......The answer is here (no shit).

Whore - When traveling through the city, someone may insult you. To equip you with the proper response I'd like you all to repeat the following: "You betta keep ya whore ass over there." Very good. If this is said to a lady I'm sure you can all understand the meaning, however, in Baltimore this applies to anyone you don't like. A whore is someone who gets fucked and disrespected in any given situation. It can be interchanged with bitch but whore has a special ring to it. Learn the word well. If you here this it doesn't mean someone is having issues with infidelity or promiscuity.

Down the Hill - The "Hill" is an area of Baltimore which starts basically at North Ave and Broadway. You probably don't want to mess around down here. This is where most of the shootings in town occur. I grew up at the top of the "Hill" which isn't an amusment park mind you. This is the main area in which police delivered their bitch slap via Hip-Hop. The area is rich with projects, abandonded homes and the stretch of Broadway that runs through it is infamous for accidents as people can't seem to understand a Stop sign.

The Inner Harbor - This is tourist haven. For residents of the city there are only a few reasons to be here. 1) You work here. 2) Barnes and Noble 3) The National Aquarium 4) You are high school age or younger and your friends work here so you get free food. 5) You are out with a lady and want to get some romance on atop Federal Hill. If none of things apply to you you are probably a tourist or pissed off cause you have to be there. Warning: Stay away from the water...for your own saftey.

Northern Pkwy - This is a large road that stretches from the East side to the West side. If you want to speed, I highly recommend it. Northern Pkwy will take you from where it looks good - straight to the hood. You can purchase roses along this stretch if it pleases you and also it's a good place to realize that no matter how nice of neighborhood you are in in Baltimore, the hood is not far.

North Ave - This is another street that stretches from east to west. The difference here is that it's pretty much all hood. If you have a vice or want to be involved in any criminal activity start on North Ave. You will find what you seek. The Jail and central bookings are located not far from here as is Coppin State Univeristy (For us Morganites - North Ave U. or Mondawmin College {Mondawmin being the hood mall around the corner}).

Anything with a motor - As a resident I'm not proud of this, but you'd see it anyway so....people will ride anything with a motor. I mean it. Dirtbikes (though illegal), Scooters, those gas powered thing you stand up on, MoPeds, Go-Karts, Miniature motorcycles (or pocket bikes), if it has an engine you and can ride it (despite it being little as hell) someone will.

We don't know where we are - My city has an identity crisis. We are in the Mid-Atlantic region. This means we are not quite north and not quite south. I have seen the Mason-Dixon line and I know that in truth Maryland has been considered a southern state. Most of us aren't with that. We'd rather be in the north. Up north people ask us are we from Carolina, down south they ask are we from New York. This is just confusing us more. We also think that folks from D.C. sound much more country and we denounce the use of the word Bama. The plight of the middle child.

Martin O'Malley - If you should be at local festival and see a gentleman playing the guitar with a cutoff Maryland T-Shirt who looks cocky, that's the mayor. It sucks. He recently said that he is giving up the band, but I still have beef. This prick took a lot of gigs from artists who need them. Every Artscape he is taking up a slot when he already has a damn job. Get off the stage and wear some sleeves ass. I know bands that need the work, go back and clean the streets or something.

Lexington Market - This is historic and sad at the same time. This is the oldest market in the country. It is also located near methadone clinics and businesses so you get an interesting mix of people. If you recall Hits from the Street on B.E.T., dude once came to Lexington Market to find out if Baltimore is indeed "the city the reads". We didn't look to good. The market is also a good place to get a Half and Half and a Chicken Box, should you get hungry. I'd recommend you don't look around to hard if you plan to eat there though.


Dreams turning to Dust

One of my last grains of hope.

I do submit for all those who bear witness...there isn't much to believe in anymore. The Fat Boys broke up. Michael Jackson and Tyson are done....I'm left with Mike Jones...WTF! I never believed in government, but G.W. Bush - god damned. Elders are scared of the seeds. I'm starting to not want to deal with anything the general public calls Hip-Hop. I can't wear my Adidas to most so called "Hip-Hop" events. The Roots didn't have a song about a girl on the last album. The Dukes of Hazzard wave a racist flag....getting my drift? So I have come up with some things I still believe in.

1) Ray Lewis - People hated him after 2000, but c'mon - we learn not snitch on the schoolyard. Anyway I know that Ray will smack dudes around come football season. I know the provider of moments like: the Eddie George strip, head up hits on Jerome Bettis and the called interception againts the Broncos will not let me down. Plus Ed Reed is being groomed so that I have someone to transfer my belief to should Ray leave the game.

2) Guiness Stout - now I'm not feeling the draught in a bottle thing...but as long as I can crack a plain old stout I'm fine. It will remain the measure of if I can patronize a bar or not. I will continue to attend open mics that serve no booze with my stout in my pocket. Don't change.

3) Spiderman - Go ahead laugh. As long as I can keep in mind the fact that Spidey can save the day and still have trouble making the rent and holding down a job life is o.k. If the Amazing Spiderman can do wonderous things and still be late for appointments, I won't stress things like bills or being late either.

4) Live bands - where ever 3 or more people can get up and rock out, or give me some jazz and help me forget that people suck for at least 15 minutes, I'll make through the night. If they play at an open mic and I can get on that's even better. I'll live in the moment and worry about the rest later.

5) Salmon - I'm almost starting to like the world again. If I can get some salmon, grilled to perfection with enough slices of lemon - it's not all bad. If I can set up the grill and blow peoples minds at the thought that no...I didn't bring chicken, a steak - you're kidding - I got Salmon punks. They was marinating last night...back up.

6)Nina Simone and Sade - As long as these ladies have songs available for me to listen to I know that I can retreat from the world and turn up my stereo and let their voices soothe me into sweet oblivion. I do regret missing the Nina Simone concert that was in D.C. about two years before she died, however as long as I can throw on the C.D. things will be alright.

7) Catching Green lights - There are few life affirming moments as doing 50 - 60 in the city and hitting several green lights. Ah the freedom. When I don't even hit the brakes and just ease up on the gas in the curves, only to hit the gas again at the apex and pass people with better cars and smaller balls than me. L-O-V-E-L-Y.

8) Graffiti - As long as someone buys spray paint and caps or magic markers and writes on walls I will know there is still hope. As long as trains carry burners from state to state and light poles are tagged, it's not all bad. As long as stickers are placed on public and private property I'm good. Blaze your Burners high gents.

9) My Zippo - Trivial - maybe. It comforts me. As long as I can reach in my pocket and produce something with a flame and inch and half long I am content. I tell my self I will only get rid of it if I have to walk away from life. Should such a time come, I'm going to burn down...something. I'll leave a trail of lighter fluid and toss my lit Zippo towards and walk away, a silohuette against the flames (Kaiser Soze reference).

10) Video Game violence - At the end of a long day when I am done with executive directors and I can't just beat people down it brings me peace to know that I can commit all the digital violence I need. Until I'm allowed to backhand offenders I will have to be happy with violence on screen. Perhaps one day I can set up sparring matches with various members of the administration, but until then I'll settle for digital death.

If you have any glimmers of hope feel free to express them. I could use it.


Helpful Hints for Dudes who Suck: Standing Out

Roses?! We don't need no stinking Roses?!?!?!

This is partially a helpful hint and partially a rant. Forever and a day people have given women roses. Roses, roses, roses. Now I agree that they are beautiful, but they are pretty common. Dudes come into clubs selling them. 7-11 sells them. I can think of 5 intersections at which I can purchase them. Every Valentines and any other holiday with romantic undertone...we give roses. Well not me, I have seen the light. The Asiatic Lily...it goes by a couple names, but that was my introduction and how I will know it. This is my personal flower. Not like it was present at my birth or something, but that is my calling card. When I give a flower this is what I give. Not to say I would never give any other type of flower..this is the one of my preference. I don't see people giving them all the time - hell, I've never seen anyone give them. This is my calling card. It becomes something that I wouldn't have to put a card on. It's presence signals...me and my intentions. Now it's not that expensive so it's not saying, "I'm paid and I choose you!". It does say, "I am giving you something beautiful and unique." For me that's what matters. Giving something that is not generic...no "standard gifts". This is from someone whose lighter matches one of his belt buckles (You've got to cooooooordinate- the middle is the Aztec Calendar - which is also on my bracelet).

I do little things to stand out. Perhaps because I try to observe things so I act like other people do as well. I have several calling cards of all sorts and perhaps people don't notice...but when they do they remember. It's like word association. Asiatic Lily = Amadeo. It takes thought and since it's not a rose I can't just pick one up from the Latino dude on Reisterstown and Druid Lake Drive. I have to go out and find that joint, I have to put out effort. I can't pick one up with a slurpee and a bag of chips. MORAL: Stand out fellas. Stop doing the same shit that people have done. Damn the Rose man at the club. Sorry Mr. Medium strip...I can't support the cause today...I may take some oranges though. I AM NOT SAYING USE THIS FLOWER. I already got dibs. Find one of your own. Just do something different. Hold off on roses for at least 5 years, then they'll be special again.


The Champ

Iron Mike...nuff said.

Despite all of the nonsense and drama that has surrounded him over the years, Mike Tyson is the man. I'm KNOW plenty of folks can and will debate this but, I will argue until I die. The youngest heavyweight champ ever. How many people have had as many fights under a round? How many boxers were as feared as Mike Tyson. Hell...as it stands the two people I don't want to have to see are my mother and Mike. Before it get's pointed out let's address the ear issue. Yes he bit Holyfields ear(s). Yes it was unprecedented. The thing I hate the most about the whole debacle was no one seems to address Evander's headbutting. I've heard people (like George Foreman) mention it, but for some reason he is not hated as much as Mike. Dude was getting off headbutt combos and what not. I may not have chosen to bite his ear, but he might have caught a jab to the adam's apple or something. I personally can't stand Holyfield. But let's judge the field. Lennox Lewis was a good champ, but he was purely tactical. If you had problems with a left jab he would left jab your ass for 12 rounds and take the win. I don't want to see a tactical boxing match. I wanna see a dude get knocked out and Mike Tyson was one of the best at it. I hear concerns over tomorrows fight that Mcbride is taller and bigger than him. So what?!?!? I can't remember a fight when Mike was the same size as his opponent. He made a career of chopping down big dudes. I think that was part of the allure. That this man who I probably look down on just kills big dudes. I remember one of his more recent fights where Mike is digging in Brian Nielsen up until the seventh round. During the break The corner men is talking to Nielsen and you hear dude say: "Stop the fight." His corner man is calling him all kinds of bitches and what not and then he tries to put the mouthpiece back in and dude locks up and starts shaking his head like a child that doesn't want to eat. I have never seen anyone bitch out of a fight like that. I think his corner man gave him a worse verbal beating than the physical one he got from Mike. Beyond all of the hype and circus the plain fact is that Mike is the Ali of my time. Think about it...when you are 50-60 years old and some young dudes are talking about the current champ and how he is them man, you'll probably say, "Mike Tyson would've whipped his ass." What other heavyweight or this era can we hold up as such an example of dominance. Lewis was good but even he fell to Hasim Rahman. As a Baltimore native I did think it would be nice to see Rahman win, but when the conversation came up my exact quote was: "Lewis took Rahman to lightly and dude got in a good ass hit, he's about to give that belt right back." And that was the Homer in me talking! My biggest beef with the dislike of Mike is...people say he's savage and uncivilized...YO! his job is to whop your ass! He's not an ambassador or a public speaker, his job is to beat dudes down. I don't need him to be charming. The fact reamins that no fighter rules forever and Mike is a fighter. His glory years may be behind him (I could say that for Heavyweight boxing at the moment as well) but when he was on top he ruled...with an iron fist. When I think about a Champion, my minds eye will produce Mike Tyson walking into the ring with those black shorts and that white towel with the hole cut in the middle draped over his shoulders and across from him some 6 foot plus guy shaking in fear.


Read a Book!!!

I often sit in the den and curl up with a hearty read...

Once again I've been tagged like the humpback whale for future tracking. I am literate and I can prove it. (I keep hearing Dave Chapelle - "and he said I couldn't read good.")

Total Number of Books Owned:

If I could count all that I've lost or people have borrowed 25o+, in my possession about 170 maybe. I dunno.

Last book(s) I bought:

Barnes and Noble had sales!
The Portrait of Dorian Gray - Oscar Wilde
The Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
The Complete works of Shakespeare - guess (I love every part of Hamlet's Soliloquy AFTER -To be or not to be)
The Blood Canticle - Anne Rice

Last book I read (leisure):

The Blood Canticle - Anne Rice has written the best vampire stories in my opinion...it pisses me off everytime I think of Queen of the Damned (the Movie)...rip off.

Current book I am reading:

The Portrait of Dorian Gray - It's just not moving as fast as I want it to. I've read other books since I started this. I hope it picks up...next time I pick it up.

Fiction or Non-Fiction:
Depends on the subject matter and author.

First book I read:

Green Eggs and Ham. I think my mother eventually had to burn it to keep it from me. I do not like them Sam I Am...back up off me nucca!

Most read book:

Behold a Pale Horse by William Cooper
I love this type of shyt...c-o-n-spiracy.

Largest Impact:

Two Thousand Seasons by Ayi Kwei Armah- Not the argument for a peaceful sit-in, or black muslims. I also wanted to name my daughter (if I ever have one) Abena after I read this.

Favorite Scholarly Book:

The Decline of Males by Lionel Tiger - All men should read this! I recommend it for the ladies as well. I always get into arguments on this subject and the ladies hate it and no dude wants to back me, much less stand within 5 feet of me.

Sexiest Book:

All the Vampire Chronicles are very sensual, when she describes a woman I want her...if she talks about coffee I want some. She always makes me think women are just more sensual by nature.

Biggest Disappointment:

Can't say...I haven't read many books that let me down. The ones that did faded from my memory.

Five Books that Mean Something to me:

The Decline of Males by Lionel Tiger
Two Thousand Seasons by Ayi Kwei Armah
Creating Affluence by Deepak Chopra
The Art of War by Sun Tzu
Mine (if I ever finish it)


How long was the scotch aged?...you savages!!!!

As nice of a person as I am, I do have some snobbish traits. I do have certain things I don't eat, but I've never been one of those, "My food was in the same room as something I won't eat people." My snob traits aren't highly visible but I am willing to express them...freely.

  • I refuse to drink tap water. I feel no shame. I know the water is different in various cities and states but I only experiment with sex. Plus, I was witness to a demonstration for water filters and the quickness with which you absorb bullshit. Spring water for me kids.
  • I refuse to drink Folgers, Sanka or any other bullshit coffee. My coffee is ground daily. I prefer French Roast or Italian. I'll make due with Espresso, but no garbage coffee. I also require cream not the powder shit.
  • I need a Guiness Stout. I may be in the minority but I consider Coronas mexican piss water (don't get me started on those who put Grenadine in the shit...pussies). Heineken doesn't do it for me anymore. The last non-stout I had was Harp and I think I faked myself out cause it's made by the same people who make Guiness. B.T.W....don't ever bring me malt liquor.
  • I will only use Listerine. This is more mental. I like clean teeth and the burning sensation is like a placebo. If nothing is happening at least my mind is fooled.
  • I hate namebrand clothes and choose by fabric. I shun polyester with a passion, it doesn't breathe. Rayon....kiss my ass. Linen, Silk, Cotton, Irish Linen, Raw Silk, Wool...natural fibers ya'll. Synthetics can burn in hell.
  • I only write with a Bold, Black, Uni-ball Vision Elite pen (sometimes the caligraphy pen, but thats for special things). Until I buy something more expensive and refillable, anyway. I refuse all others and subsequently I often refuse to let anyone else use my pen. I will search for ten minutes for any other pen, while I hold mine in my hand, but I won't let people hold it. So sorry, can't help you.
  • Name brand food. The name brand whore in me works for food. The worst thing is when someone finishes off something of mine and replaces it with some store brand crap. Rite Aid brand spring water?!?! Curse you!
  • No Bootleg Movies. Someone is always suggesting a good bootleg guy and I retch like preppy stuff shirt. I want the DVD with the extras, ok. I want clear quality. Why would I pay half price for a low quality copy with no extras. This ain't the early 90's with bootleg music. I can even find that online before I buy it. I would never taint myself with such grainy distorted filth.
  • No fu-fu booze. Perhaps I am in the minority, but I don't want any "new" hooch. Scotch, Vodka, Tequila, Gin, and other things that have been around will suffice. No glowing shit. No sugary-sweet shit. I want it to slide down my throat and spread it's fiery wings in my chest.
  • Emcee snob. No your favorite rapper does not impress me. Yes, the whisper song sucks. No Biggie and Tupac are not the Greatest of All Time. If you know nothing of Melle Mel's verse on Beat Street don't start this conversation. If your favorite emcee is too hard to live than I'd like to kill him. If half of his album sounds like a cheesy B-movie with a bigger effects budget than a storyline...he/she sucks. Hip Hop is over 30 if none of the people you listen to sound like it than you don't want to ride with me.



Is that dirt on my shoulder?

So as a person who likes to think things through I have been reviewing my life so far. I do this every 6 months. This time it has been initiated by my cousins' (The gentleman in the blue suit) impending marriage. I then realized that my other cousin (in the middle) has two children. I find my self (as in the picture) looking over my shoulder like - what the hell happened? I am not old yet I can no longer be recognized as young as I feel. For some reason I hear Tyler Durden talking about feeling like a 30 year old boy. One getting married and the other has kids. Here is a list of my top 10 regrets.

10) I wish I had punched a few more people. It sounds like a violent indulgence...but I was often a target and in retrospect I would have been better served clocking some of those assholes.

9) I don't know how to play the guitar. I wish my mother had at least forced me to learn the piano or something. I can still learn but by now I would have been good already. I probably would be the Bob Dylan type...not a great voice but dope lyrics and music.

8) I never had a High School Sweetheart. Too late to do anything about this...well I could but there is the whole jailbait thing and it only counts if we're both in school at the time. If I knew then what I know now...I might be a father, I think I can get over this one. Besides I did go crazy after the prom.

7) I should have got a car at an auction. This may seem superficial but a brother is ready to own a house and car payments suck. I often add up the money I would have if I had bought something for a couple G's. Luckily next August I can dump this and do what I should have done from jump. The 69' Mustang is not as close as I want it to be.

6) I wish I had found a tax lien property instead of moving to where I am. Once again never rent from family. Especially people who remember you as a child, they tend to not add up your current age and don't listen when you tell them things. Thank God my mother isn't like that.

5) I have never been in a relationship for longer than 6 months. While there is no one in my sordid past that I would wish to go back and "try again" with, it does seem crazy that I've been subscribed to magazines longer than I've been with a women. I've flirted for longer than that. I've had flings longer than that. I'll do better next time.

4) I should have gotten to know my grandfather better. He died when I was in the third grade so I wasn't thinking on these terms then. However, we were the only men in the house. Growing up with 5 women, most of whom who have been divorced isn't the ideal situation for a young man. I wish I could have got some advice or something from him. The only thing I do have is a tie of his...needless to say styles change and the last time I wore it I had to refrain from cussing someone out.

3) I wish I had hung out more around the way. I avoided cats for a while cause I didn't like what was happening to them, however, they were my friends and now several of them are not around. I feel like a black man losing friends and I wish I had spent more time with them.

2) I have not at this point told my father how dissapointed in him I am. There is still time to do this, especially thanks to zabasearch. I want to let him know that it's fucked up that a man wouldn't try to be involved in the life of his first child and only son, because of him I will never let a child feel about me the ways I've felt about him. I'd also like to deck him once, hopefully he'll know I did it from hurt more than anger. I can't help but think about Luke and Vader, I won't be a Jedi until I can face him. Pardon me...I need a Daddy tissue.

1) I have never been in love. Yes I'm sappy. I have felt like I loved someone and perhaps someone loved me but I have never been in love with someone. There is no person that I would want to track down and start over with. It's better to have loved and lost than never loved at all. I ponder this constantly. Would I be bitter had I lost and would that be better than just never feeling like someone really wanted me...not the pic me or the onstage me but the me, me. I consider love when you direct your energy to helping someone become the best "them" that they can be, without wanting anything in return including the good feeling of having helped someone. Perhaps no one has been in love like this, save for mothers and children. At this point I can only remember things I hated about people, for once it would be nice to think of someone and remember a good feeling.


Return of the Asshole!

Yeah I'll be in late, then I have a lunch meeting and I'll be leaving early...don't call me.

My Boss has gone on vacation for 10 days! Once again I am in charge. The bad part is I have to have meetings with the executive director...a stupid petty man who doesn't know how to speak to people. Bonus...executive benefits. Long lunch, leaving early and no interruptions from my blogging schedule. I should get some good posts in. Downside, everyone will be calling to talk to me. I like talking to people...when it's my choice. Luckily the shades are in effect and I can just nod emptily while singing "When am I going to make a Living" by Sade in my head. I will delegate responsibility and dip out of the office. I will coordinate office efforts and then play my music loudly. I will take strolls in the middle of the day. The other bonus is that Ray Lewis is going to speak at our clients graduation and in lieu of my manager I get to sit on stage. The cruddy thing is I have some questions or suggestions for next season. I don't care about his community service efforts. I wanna know is Fassell going to spread out the offence. I am living a dream...except for the meetings. I am willing to take any suggestions of ways I can wile out in the absence of my boss.

High School Years: Graffiti, Ganja and Gratuitous Violence - Cameron

Chubby, intelligent 12 year olds are best served by learning to fight...quickly.

Perhaps you've noticed that lately I've become a picture whore. I was recently going through my flix (none of which I have ever framed or hung) and I saw a picture of someone I forgot about. Cameron. I had a conversation or two with him and we weren't really friends but I will always remember him. Why? Cause he got his ass beat every year. From the 6th grade until high school graduation he got beatup at least once a year, occasionally more. I knew about Cameron before I ever saw or met him. I used to be an easy bully target (c'mon look at that picture) so even when I wasn't much of a fighter, I was to stubborn to just get beat up. You could pick on me, but when it came to a fight you had to DEAL with me. When I began to come across Cameron I wondered what his deal was. Did he have religious parents? Was he scared? Or is there some other reason that he just wouldn't fight back? I actually saw him get beat up twice and both were not horrible ass whopping it was just the circumstance around them.

One day we are walking across the field from school towards are neighborhood. We along one path. These dudes from homestead (hoodlums) on another path and Cameron by himself. Homestead dude a takes homestead dude b's hat. H.a tells H.b if he wants his hat he has to go beat up Cameron. Without a second thought or trace of hesitation dude makes a bee-line to Cameron and starts serving him. Smack...Smack...smack,smack,smack. H.b walks back to the group, gets his hat back and everyone presses forward. Cameron (holding his eye) slowly rises, gathers his things and continues homeward.

Another time as I am walking through the halls I notice the signs of a fight starting. I approach the edge of the crowd and notice some dude facing off against...Cameron. Cameron has his books clutched to his chest and keeps trying to walk past the guy. Dude pushes him back everytime he tries to pass. This goes down 6 times until dude just grabs Cameron and slings him into the stair well and starts pummelling him. The crowd pressed in and moved me further from the scene of the crime.

It was at this time I started to think about Cameron's...life. When we spoke he seemed happy and energetic. What was it about him that made people start using him as a whipping boy? As someone who used to be picked on I understand how your whole mood can switch when someone starts to pick on you? I know how you can walk around smiling and hoping people leave you alone. What I didn't understand was the difference between us once dukes went up. I would get mad...I never bothered anyone, how could people fuck with me? Did this asshole expect to keep picking on me? I don't deserve this. I could identify most with the Incredible Hulk. I was normally mild mannered but confronted with an injustice like this I would snap. I remember in my neighborhood I was the little kid that would start crying before I beat your ass. Older boys would warn people, "Yo, you better leave him alone before he loses it on you." All this caused me to wonder, did Cameron have this rage or did he go to another place inside himself? As I unfurled, did he curl in on himself? The worst thing that happened to Cameron was graduation. He walked the stage before me and I remember people booing him. I didn't understand how this victim of our adolescent minds and temperments deserved to be booed for surviving long enough to get away from us. If Cameron had showed up with a M-16 and started taking out classmates...I would have understood. He reminds me of the song "Jeremy" by Pearl Jam. "Clearly I remember, picking on the boy, seemed a harmless little fuck, but we unleashed a lion". I wonder how many school age killers were originally Cameron? I wished I had helped him, but then I never liked the thought of fighting for somone. Especially a guy. I figured I don't want to step in and be the only one on his side fighting. I still feel guilty, though. I also feel mad at people I remember who had known him for years and never helped him. How many people beat him up cause they knew he could? Perhaps for that reason alone I should have intervened. I, personally, know that young people can be cruel, but...damn. Seven Years. Imagine getting your ass beat for 7 years straight. I wish I could say that today he's successful and doing well, but I don't know. He faded off into the shadows of my memory until my yearbook popped up. Out of respect I can't show his picture. I wish I could run into him and find out he was doing well, I wish moreso that I could step back and do something. Not for the good feeling it would give me, just cause he didn't deserve it. He is my reminder that injustice done to one really effects all, I mean were the Columbine kids just two white Camerons? If so did the children of that school deserve what happened? I don't know. I'm just sorry I didn't help when I could.


Top 10

Since I have been tagged by Goldi like a species that is on the verge of extinction...here are 10 things I actually love.

10) Non Formulaic Movies - I hate happily ever after. I love when heroes die, people don't wind up together and the crippled guy is Kaizer Soze.

9)Swords and Knives - What can I say if it's sharp and cuts things I like it. I also respect a sword fight more than a shootout. I can sit on a rooftop from a hundred yards away and shoot you, if you don't move I can just close my eyes and pull the trigger. A sword fight means I better be skilled, have a good sword and be able to learn you as an opponent. One of my favorite edged weapons is my trusty Butterfly. Sharp enough to be useful, involved enough to make an asshole back up and think.

8)Being Calm - Doesn't sound like much but I love being in the middle of chaos and not blinking. Calmly explaining things while people kirk out. I learned along time ago the worse thing in any situation is the reaction of scared or angry people. It's also good when a woman is angry and starts to fuss. My tone goes lower and lower and I become more and more rational. After a while people realize that they are screaming and starting to look silly. It takes longer for them to calm down when I can't wipe the smirk off my face.

7)Star Wars - I don't care how nerdy it sounds. I love Star Wars. It is the oldest experience I have that is still producing new information (besides my constant study of stupid people and sex).

6) Music - Without music I would kill people until captured. Nina Simone and Sade have saved many lives. The type of musice I listen to changes how I drive. Good for sex. Good for parties. Good for mood. Dancing. "Women can't love me like music, sweet music", but women do great in their own rite.

5)Performing Live - There are few feelings like looking out into a crowd and knowing they are keyed in on you. Having a band back you up and seeing them get into your words and up the level of their play. People saying or singing your chorus. The best part is the moment it all becomes reflex. When the words spill out of you as oppossed to feeling like you're saying them. Nothing like a live show.

4)Being insubordinate - I hate the rules. I think most of them are stupid and have no purpose. I am actually a great employee/citizen, but any chance I get I will modify, bend and break the rules. Perhaps I see a flaw and a way to improve things. Maybe I just don't like the way I was spoken to. Maybe it's tuesday. I love not doing what I'm told and getting away with it. I also enjoy doing something no one wants me to, getting caught and not caring.

3)Women and Sex - Simple answer, perhaps. Expected, maybe. It is the truth though. I love women. I love the differences in them. I love how the smallest thing they do can be sooo sexy. I love when women are caring and when they put their foot down. Sexually I'm like I was when Nintendo came out. I don't want to go home or to work, I just want to stay where I am and indulge. I love to find out what turns a woman on. I love pulling them close and anticipating. I love waking up and finding someone gripping my body. I love when someone is active!!! These could be seperate entries based on some things I enjoy about women, but sex without one...isn't.

2)Nature - Though I require many things about the city I love nature. Swimming, hiking, and walking in the grass with no shoes on. Watching the sunset over a body of water or a hill as oppossed to the city skyline. If I could live on a hill with the city in a valley beyond that might be the perfect place for me.

1)Freedom - I love waking when I please. Speaking or not. Going out of town based on a 10 minute conversation. Whipping through the lanes on the interstate. Not being restricted. Using my logic and my imagination as I feel and not as others dictate. Doing something because I was told not to. Not feeling obligated to call and things still being cool. Dropping in on people. Drinking beer in the movies. I like doing what I want to. Drinking a beer at 10am. Turning up my music. Grabbing my nuts when talking to executives. Using sign language to call superiors assholes.

If this thing spreads like a virus then I have to give it to Gunner Kaufman and Still Talking Shit cause I don't think puppies and kittens will be the top of their list...I could be wrong.


High School years: Graffiti, Ganja and Gratuitous Violence

Some Junior event...before locks...before the madness...before facial hair.

Like most my last 4 years of public education were very interesting...however I don't think many had experiences like me.

My first year was normal (for a chubby smart kid). 10th grade, after a summer of weightlifting and spending my summer-job money on school clothes I blew up some more. Junior year I became popular but Senior year it all went downhill....

Gratuitous Violence

We begin with the fact that I am one of 5 people that has locks (two others hang with me). I thought I was one of the few who was into camoflauge and I was wrong, wrong, wrong. I had just became a pothead over the summer while developing a viscious freestyle and honing my tagging skills. Then the adventure starts. Keep in mind that this is a series so let me start with...

The Fight...Since I no longer desire popularity I'm rolling in my close knit unit. Aswad, Trey, Yasin, Warren and E (scola). One day as we are in the bathroom, making plans for our impending state of elevation, Warren comes into the bathroom mad and explains that Broderick just stole (punched him on the sly for the uninitiated) him in the Gym. Since he is on the basketball team and the coach runs phys. ed., there is no retribution just efforts to see that a fight does not happen. Broderick is 6'6" and over 220 pound...Warren is a strong dude but not 6'6" and under 200 pounds. We say what you wanna do and proceed to have his back on the way to the other side of the building. Any school people recognize the opening stages of a fight especially since we were cutting through the middle of hallway traffic in very long strides. By this time we had a rep anyway. Warren, is mad as hell and in the front so we all were caught off guard when he runs up steals (active form of stole) Broderick and stands there staring at him. Shit kicks off and the crowd presses in leaving me stranded in the middle. Broderick is basically whopping Warrens ass. I mean lifting him up against the wall, slamming him to the floor and dragging him across it. Swad said he thought we were going to bank (jump) Broderick from the onset but Warren wasn't planning things out. In the midst of the chaos a dude named Warehouse from B's click and the football team decides to get some steals in on Warren, wrong. Trey who was at the time the skinny one (he bulked up after high school) appears from out of nowhere three piecing Warehouse and dropping his ass. He swung like his father had taught him how to fight. Warehouse tries to get up and Trey starts stomping his ass in the face. Eventually shit is broken up and Broderick, Warehouse, Warren and Trey all go to the office to be suspended. Upon there return we expect beef. Broderick and Warren are from the Alameda, a street known for beating people down in unfair circumstances. A street about three blocks from school. Time passes and there is no beef. I am struck by this. No retaliation? Here I am just waiting to serve someone. So on comes graduation practices. My man Trey was a junior but went to our prom with a class mate of mine. She is sitting next to me while Warehouse and his lackey "Feet" sit behind us. I start hearing conversation about getting some dude and what not, only to look back and discover these assholes pointing at Trey in picture from Prom. This along with the fact that his date and like 4 other girls are on my row piss me off. I start digging into them about how they aren't going to do anything and watch them and their words shrivel like George Costanza getting out of a pool. After the practice I track down my peoples and tell them it's on and we are going to whop these dudes asses TODAY. The most excited person I know (Aswad) is telling me to chill out and they don't want to beef. He goes to speak to them and they back down. Meanwhile I just want to beat this dudes head in which is out of character as I'm usually the calm voice of reason. Then through various source we find out there will be no return fire. Why you ask? Basically someone believes that we are attached to the Jamaican Mafia. WTF!?!?!??!?! Well a couple years ago some dude beat up Swads' sister (one of the 5 people with locks) and his father and a friend caught the dude and whopped his ass not far from the school. People saw this and thought it was like an organized gang thing as oppossed to what happens when girls have fathers. The funniest part is during graduation, myself, Aswad and Warren are the last 3 people to cross the stage and the assholes tried to boo us. We were so popular that they were over-ridden by the cheers of the rest of the class. (Warren lost but he did earn props for stepping to Broderick like he did.) Post graduation we are having a small *ahem* celebration and we notice Warehouse across the street. Swad starts to cross to see what the deal will be and if it's over. Warehouse crosses the entire width of this 6 lane main street with his hand outstretched. No beef. Without trying to or knowing it we became part of the lore of Lake Clifton Eastern High's class of '96. Thanks to a pissed off father, dreadlocks and the steal heard round the school.


Vortex (A break from the regularly scheduled program)

So I have once again missed days but I will say that I at least had fun for the weekend. First of all allergies suck and I realize it will be sometime before I can fulfill the riding into the country on a Clydesdale. Doing it with a hospital mask sucks. Bonfires rock. Being 90 yards away from the closest neighbor rocks. Ponds on the property rocks. I have been held to a confidentiality clause on some events of the weekend so until it expires or I get clarity on specific points I can't say much more. As always I have plethora new topics including the High School years: Graffiti, Ganja and Gratuitous Violence. For now I'm laid back. Allergies, being out of town and missing days has really taken me out of the "normal". Common is my touchstone currently. One of those albums that makes me want to write and perform and show all wack emcees the business end of my vocabulary. This C.D. has been the only thing that kept me in touch with reality. Since I can't divulge my entire weekend story. I'll tell you how I defeated asthma.

Hopefully alot of you have seen Stephen King's It. Besides being one of my favorite movies it helped me overcome an ailment. I owe my thanks to Eddie Kasperak. I used to be one of those swollen, red-eyed, wheezing, run a block and pass out kids. I used to have ashtma attacks at the drop of a hat. My man Ike used to love bringing up me getting chased by 10 girls until I collapsed on the black top. The fact that I in the past few years have been able to run miles seems amazing when I think about the past. Asthma attacks were a good defense mechanism. I remember once some older dudes had us in a basement on some crazy shit and I was let out cause I faked an attack and one of the older boys had asthma too. The bad thing was all the times I couldn't keep up with a game or something cause I couldn't breathe. Well if you recall Eddie from IT, He was really sheltered and had asthma attacks 10 times a day. Then one day the old man in the pharmacy told him it was a placebo and he didn't really have asthma. This started me thinking perhaps it was all in my mind. This is coming from someone who used to get sick and use all my strength to breathe. People would have to carry me to bed and downstairs in the morning. I have had more hospital visits from 3 - 8 than most people do in their life. I have been told I couldn't have aspirin, sudafed and have been given more inhalers and syrups than most folks know about. I have broken out because of plants, cats, dogs, horses and anything anyone can react to. After reading the book I started thinking perhaps Asthma was in my mind and I could beat it with my mental power. I would just will myself to not have Asthma attacks. So I stopped carrying my inhaler which used to be like my house keys...couldn't leave without it. While allergies subsided but never went away I have not had an asthma attack since that time. I remember the first time I outran someone after that...it was a great feeling to look back and see him unable to catch up to me. I love not being afraid that I'll do something to set it off. I especially love the feeling of having ran a few miles and being tired but knowing I can master my breath and reign it in. I heard someone say that If you take a deep breath and then try to breathe again - that's what an asthma attack feels like. I say bullshit. With an attack you know there is room but the air doesn't seem to be getting through. It almost seems like the air is escaping somewhere else so no matter how deep you breathe you just can't get a normal one in. The feeling of freedom I have is like going to lunch and never returning to a job you hate (which is quite satisfying). I would never think that I would make such a leap forward in life because of a nerd from a movie. Thanks Eddie!