Archive for January, 2014

Sex: The Birds, The Bees and The Hornets

Posted in Trending with tags , on January 28, 2014 by geniusscribbleink

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Sex has always been the most provocative topic of discussion, only to be rivaled by that of religion and politics. There has always been a taboo mystique surrounding the often controversial attachments that will assuredly come out when sex is discussed in an open forum, as well as, behind the walls of token privacy. There was a time when 42nd Street illuminated with the aura of Babylon and was often thought to be a playground for the perverse and the demonized. Any man or woman who acted outside the insulated theory of “traditional sex” was considered hedonistic and the devoid to that of divine standard. They were considered “freaks” due to their explorative nature regarding pushing the limits of societal boundaries as it relates to sexual intercourse. Is it sin or is it lust? The answer to that age-old question still remains unresolved and will continue to remain unresolved because of personal preferences based on parenting, religion and an individual’s core desires. I have always been open about the subject matter because I feel that closed doors, albeit they provide sheltered protection, can also creates exclusion. Exclusion, in turn, can result in alienation; thus making ample room for uneducated theories and ideologies to fester and evolve. I am way too flawed to deal in the absolute and say with no uncertainty what is just or sacrilegious. I have seen sinners repent and I have also seen supposed agents for God commit acts that would tarnish the Holy Grail. My theory has always been “Your God, Your Way”, as ones belief system cannot be a campaign for another person’s candidacy. What is right and what is wrong has and forever will be an interpretive perception. This mantra on sexual decorum comes on the cusp of an educational moment I had with my budding nephew, who is approaching the age of thirteen. The subject of dating became the focus of our “fatherly type” session, as he is now entering into the fog ridden bliss of having admiration for the opposite sex. He met a young girl his age, who somehow managed to grab his attention more than his newly acquired PS3 (talk about real power). Somehow an agreed upon, chaperoned date evolved out of this chance meeting, thus resulting in a supposed movie date. Please keep in mind for pure edification purposes, that I am a surrogate uncle/father figure due to the early passing of my nephew’s real father, so the date was made between his mother and the girl’s mother. I am a bit hypocritical with early dating, albeit, I did start at an early age myself. I just realize from my own past discretion how much energy and emotions are involved when putting a relationship at the forefront of your teenage wonder years. I think it places you into an adult mindset long before adulthood arrives, hence why I had to converse with my nephew on what I term as the “The Birds, The Bees and The Hornets”. When attempting to educate my nephew about the nuances of the male anatomy and arousal perspectives and the cause and effects of choice, I reflected back to the “talk” with my mother. There was no elicit coaxing of “there comes a time” cliché or “when you think you are thinking about what I’m thinking about, go ask your father” redirection. No, my mother was never a mixer of words and was never quite “PC” about anything. It was on our front step, the darkness had set in and in true form she stated to me (edited version): “You don’t got s**t, don’t bring home s**t, because I’m not taking care of no babies and you won’t be embarrassing me”. Yup, no need for an interpreter at that point, message was received loud and clear. Amazing how directness tends to eliminate stupidity, however, in recognizing the “it’s a different generation” theorists, I broached my nephew with a sugar and a dash of pepper concept as opposed to the bottle of hot sauce my mother sprinkled on my Frosted Flakes. I inquired about what he perceived dating as and what it entailed. I then talked to him about urges and hormones; arousal and the acts that can follow when they can become stimulated. But most importantly I talked to him about respect, not only for the person he’s interested in, but also respecting himself. Often times the pressure surrounding young men is that they should be fruitful and continue to harvest. I told my nephew that it’s ok to not be ready as it doesn’t make you less of a man, it just makes you the man you want to be known as. I was pleased to hear him understand etiquette, as he acknowledged (he took very good notes when I was talking to his older sister) that he found it fitting that his date gets introduced to his family (yup he’s 12 mind you) because it’s the right thing to do when you begin seeing someone. He even thought it to be only right to call the girl’s mother to confirm and ask if she could drop his date off at a certain time. It floored me hear the responsibility flow from a younglings mouth, as it is refreshing to hear that he understands the concepts of courtship, respectability and also the code of being a gentleman. I’m not sure if my advise was sound enough, as well as, I’m not sure what is appropriate given his age. The point of this blog is to bring to the forefront the advanced mindset of this generation and what is the best applicable techniques that can be utilized to not only educate them, but to also promote positive, cognizant decision-making. I have always subscribed to telling the truth versus shielding to protect. For the longest time sex was equivalent to that of the Boogeyman, as parents made it appear to be an ugly act that should be avoided and never entertained as an option. I have stated that this technique works, right up until the time that a young person entertains intimacy, only to find out that sex is actually great. I follow-up by saying that its great and wonderful, however it is not meant to be shared like air with just anyone and that there is a heavy, adult burden that comes with being irresponsible while committing the act. If you don’t want a baby, then stop practicing to make one; it is just that simple. Strangely enough, I had a friend who wisely advised me that pregnancy may not be the worst thing to come home with these days, given the issues of the A.I.D.S. epidemic. What I do know is that we need to be educated on the times we live in. The societal pressures and advanced thinking of this computerized gas chamber, has the youth encased in room surrounded by reinforced glass. It is our jobs as adults to have the necessary tools available when it’s time to reach them and break them out of this misguided, mental prison. #in case of emergency break glass

Richard Sherman: The Stanford Thug

Posted in News, Sports with tags , , , , , on January 22, 2014 by geniusscribbleink

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“I didn’t choose the thug life, the thug life chose me. All I’m trying to do is survive and make good out of the dirty, nasty unbelievable lifestyle that they gave me”.
-Tupac Shakur

Thug Life was a phrase that was proliferated throughout the catacombs of urban street corners, making its way to mainstream America by way of an interview conducted by the late, great Tupac Shakur with radio station KMEL (California) in 1996. Although Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines a thug as “a brutal ruffian or assassin”; the connotation by which Mr. Shakur subscribed to, gave an entirely different meaning to the phrase. “Thug-Life” is actually an acronym, that when broken down stands for “The Hate U Gave Little Infants F@cks Everybody”. Tupac would go on to expound on the thinking behind the acronym by stating that what has been fed to a child from birth (hate, ignorance, poverty, violence etc.) ends up coming home to roost when that child becomes an adult and acts on what he or she has been taught from day one. This psychoanalysis by Tupac, borders on the same genius to that of the saliva study conducted by Pavlov on his trusty canine counterpart. Tupac would go on to not only tattoo the “Thug Life” phrase on his belly, but he would also use it as a calling card for awareness for the urban black male. This calling card would eventually result in him writing a manifesto street code for peace, that would in turn, be signed by the leaders of the Bloods and Crips street gangs. Tupac’s intelligence was always masterfully disguised because of his outward persona, controversial statements and seemingly unapologetic bravado. Those who identified with him and embraced his unbridled extroversive tendencies, adored him and often recognize and acknowledged him as a highly intelligent and extremely conscious individual. It is often the cover by which as book is truly judged, however it is in the context of its pages that the deliverance of a fascinating tale of two cities unfolds. Oddly enough, the extroversive tendencies of another individual is the focus of this blog entry. He, much like Tupac Shakur, fully displays his unapologetic bravado in front of the camera, on Twitter, on Instagram and various other social media outlets. It would not be until the end of the NFL’s NFC Championship game, that the world would be introduced to one of the most trending topics of interest. His name? Richard Sherman.

Richard Kevin Sherman is the starting cornerback for the NFL Seattle Seahawks franchise. His seemingly brash disposition, along with, his widely criticized pension for self promotion, has garnered him some highly provocative attention amongst the NFL community. The controversial antics, which included snapping pictures of defeated opponents in down trodden positions and making a mockery of them and tweeting highly respected peers who play the same position to call them out competitively; all which are considered to be acts not palatable in the unwritten rules of sportsmanship conduct. These purported “bush league” tactics are frowned upon by many of the purists of the game, however, the workings of each generation changes, thus ushering in new ideologies and ultimately a new regime that pushes the boundaries of culture as a whole. The point of the matter is like it or not, today’s world is not our world; and to think that it will suddenly spin back to the future like Marty Mcfly is a naive premise at best. So as we jettison to Sunday’s NFC Championship game and we have a 25-year-old man who just made arguably one of the greatest plays in his short NFL career. He is high off of adrenalin and “feeling himself” due to the fact that this play occurred versus his arch nemesis. Should it come as shock to anyone that his speech was more improvisational and less written prepared? If a microphone was shoved into anyone’s face after a moment of elation, I can all but guarantee that “the moment” would supersede all logical thinking and the person who you are instinctively will come out full throttle and extremely transparent. But is this not what the media searches for? Do reporters not seek the “colorful” instead of uninspiring gray? Is it not the Richard Sherman types that reporters want to seek in the hopes that he/she will offer up a classic sound bite? The problem in this particular case was the fact that the reporter, for once, was not ready for the interviewer. Especially an interviewer who utilized a classic reporters tool, in catching her off guard and putting her on the spot. It was in Erin Andrews’ flinching and unpreparedness, that an act of a verbal cheap shot turned it into what many deemed as an apparent accosting. The fact that Erin Andrews is Caucasian and Richard Sherman is African-American, all but opened the flood gates up for every bigotry driven ignoramus to spew out his/her venomous hatred. Richard Sherman has been called every derogatory and incendiary racial epitaph in the handbook. Words like gorilla, nigger and thug have all been projected in Richard Sherman’s direction; all on the cusp of him saying he was better than another player of African-American descent. Are these racial taunts about Michael Crabtree or are they about Erin Andrews and a boisterous African-American male who she looked like she had just seen for the first time? Not to say that her reaction was racially laced, however, America’s response to her reaction speaks volumes about perception versus that of character content. Tupac Shakur once stated that no matter what a black man accomplishes, he will still be viewed as a nigger by the mainstream public. Maybe Tupac Shakur painted that statement with too wide of an inclusion brush, however his theory/belief has merit. The rundown resume on Richard Sherman is one that should be celebrated, as he has done his community more of a service than a disservice. Born in Compton California, Richard Sherman went on to attend Stanford University where he graduated with a GPA of 3.9. He would return after graduating from Stanford to continue his Masters degree in communication. This supposed “thug” exemplifies the term “student athlete” and has provided a blueprint for other young men in the African-American community to adhere to and abide by. The fact that a brash demeanor is enough to conjure up a barrage of racially fueled retorts, all but solidifies what is in the hearts of many Americans who secretly hide their hoods in their closet for special occasions such as this. It further proves that accomplishments, especially those that garner high financial rewards, makes the African-American not only a target for criticism, but it also makes him/her an apparent thug if boisterous. I’d like to applaud this type of thug representing my culture, because unlike the mantra that was adopted by Tupac Shakur, the little infant named Richard Sherman overcame the statistics and is drowning out the “hate” with a pair of his recently endorsed Beats Audio headphones. What gets lost in this quagmire is the fact that Richard Sherman does have a degree in mass communication. Perhaps he’s brilliantly putting his well-earned degree to good use, because he is now more relevant than ever. It’s apropos to cue the Aloe Blacc song. #you can tell everybody I’m the man!

In Review: Movie: Ride Along

Posted in Movies & Television with tags , , , , , , on January 18, 2014 by geniusscribbleink

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Prior to the start of any feature film, you will always get several green screen trailers for movies scheduled for release in the future. In fact, it was many moons ago that I went to a movie and received a questionnaire regarding a potential movie in the making. The question that was posed was “Would you be interested in watching a movie co-starring Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan”? I checked yes, because after watching Chris Tucker in the movie Friday and also growing up a fan of Kung Fu movies, I was very familiar with the unbounded, charismatic antics of Jackie Chan. To my surprise in the future, a little movie debuted called Rush Hour and of course the rest is history. So in reliving my nostalgic, nerd moment, I return to several months ago. I was awaiting the start of a movie and low and behold, the trailer for Ride Along, starring Ice Cube and Kevin Hart, came on the screen. Now Kevin Hart is perhaps one of the funniest people in America. If you never saw”The Real Husbands of Hollywood” or “Act Like A Woman..Think Like A Man”, please do yourself a huge favor and watch both. I promise you that if laughter was meant to come in small packages, then Kevin Hart owns the UPS Dropbox company. He is a brilliant comedian who has taken self-defecating humor to an impeccable level. Of course we all know the accoutrements of Ice Cube; whether it’s as a member of NWA or through his movie series Friday or Barbershop. The actor with the stoic, yet humor-filled “gangster face” has been able to transition himself as an accomplished movie producer and actor for quite some time now, building up a pretty impressive resume. So knew would conclude that placing Ice Cube and Kevin Hart in the same movie, would go together like an ice tea and lemonade blend, right? Hmmm, not exactly. I am not sure where the drop off occurred. Kevin Hart played the quintessential rent-a-cop (Ben) who had ambitions of becoming a real life police officer. Ice Cube played the role of James, the no-nonsense, gritty detective who just so happens to be the overprotective big brother of Kevin Hart’s character’s live in girlfriend Angela; played by Tika Sumpter of Tyler Perry’s “The Have and The Have Nots”. The storyline was tailor-made for the accident waiting to happen scenario, however this movie wasted all of its funny material on its commercial trailer. There are gaps in between the laughter, porous chemistry between the stars, leaving only one memorable moment for me in a beginning car chase scene. You would think between the supporting cast of John Leguizamo and Laurence Fishburne, along with up and coming comedian Jay Pharoah, that this would be a can’t miss movie. Well unfortunately you can miss the theatre and wait for it on Redbox. Ride Along takes you on a ride to nowhere extremely funny. Save your money.

MLK: Normalcy Never Again

Posted in News with tags , on January 15, 2014 by geniusscribbleink

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January 15th is one of the most acknowledged days of recognition in the history of the United States. Not only is it the ides of January, but it is also the birthdate of what many in the world believe to be the greatest orator to ever live. Yes, Martin Luther King Jr.’s impactful depiction of a dream, captivated the conscious of America during a time of social duress and blatant inequality. Although we know his monumental speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on August 28th of 1963 to be called the “I Have A Dream” speech. The original draft of the said speech was initially entitled “Normalcy Never Again”. What is ironic is the fact that the “I Have A Dream” speech would become a segue to a condition of a black community that would seemingly have “normalcy never again”. Yes, the “dream warrior” that is Martin Luther King Jr., once suggested that: “It may well be that the Negro is God’s instrument to save the soul of America.” In fact, in his “I Have A Dream” speech, Martin Luther King Jr. elicited: “With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope”. It is from his sermonic dissertations that we can surmise that Martin Luther King Jr. had envisioned a heightened conscious as it pertained to plight of the African-American moving forward. Granted, the financial successes of the African-Americans in this country has led to heightened power, however, it is the conscious/awareness of the African-American as it pertains to the image of our internal “self-esteem and identity, that has hit a virtual bottomless pit of degradation. If I was to take poetic license in editing and modernizing the “I Have A Dream” speech, it would include a significant list of dream aspirations. I would off start by saying I Have A Dream that: 1) We stop wearing our pants sagging 2) We stop having more fathers in jail than in their households 3) We become more educated and less ignorant 4) We take pride in our communities 5) We work hard on a plan instead of working on a quick scheme 6) We don’t sell out our people via entertainment for the sake of financial gain 7) We preserve our history by knowing our history 8) We stress education over material infatuation 9) We teach young ladies about their minds before their bodies 10) We return God to his rightful place inside our households instead of the misled confines of morally absolved churches. These are my dream edits and I’m sure that these same sentiments would be echoed tenfold if Martin Luther King Jr. was here see the current state of the black community in its entirety. A community that embraces genocidal tendencies more than cultural preservation. A community, that much like a misplaced tribe, has no concepts of its origin and its ancestral plight. “Normalcy never again” is apropos in describing an ethnicity in the wake of an aftermath of its slain leader, whose conscious dream has long been forgotten. It is only remembered on one calendar day instead of being embraced in our daily lifestyle as an elementary standard throughout our cultural atmosphere. Are we better off today than we were during the Civil Rights movement? Or has our dreams come in the form of material greed and degradation. I see more black-facing minstrel acts being portrayed by African-Americans, symbolizing that we are not beyond the exploitive, self-inflicted gun wounds that our leaders once fought so hard to abolish. Is this a dream or the harsh remnants of a nightmare? Most importantly I ask, did our hopes die on the Lorraine Hotel balcony along with the heartbeat of a man who loved to dream like no other. #normalcy never again

D. Rodman: An American Menace?

Posted in News with tags , , , , on January 8, 2014 by geniusscribbleink

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“This life is like a swimming pool. You dive into the water, but you can`t see how deep it is”. -Dennis Rodman

Controversy has never been a foreign language when the words “Dennis” and “Rodman” are conjunctively connected in a sentence or a phrase. He is thought to be a combustible element, whose mercury switch is seemingly activated from the slightest of movement or dare I say the slightest of emotional instability. Known for his over the top, flamboyant lifestyle; Dennis Rodman has always been a media magnet on the court, off the court and often times in the court, whether legally or in that of public opinion. What has always been muddied by his flamboyancy and his extroverted personality, is the fact that he is one of the most accomplished athletes of his generation. He is a five time NBA Champion and a two-time NBA Defensive Player Of The Year. He led the NBA in rebounding for seven years and in 2011 he was inducted into the Basketball Hall Of Fame. Unfortunately his donning of a wedding dress in the middle of Manhattan for a book signing and his relationship with the iconic pop legend Madonna, all but made Dennis Rodman a walking, living and breathing Vaudeville act. His tattooed body, along with his piercings, became a revolutionary trend setting precedent for the NBA; as you are pressed to find any NBA player since Dennis'”out of the closet” exposure, who is not “inked up”. Dennis’ polarizing persona has always been a topic that has been hotter than his former sidekick vixen Carmen Electra. But this recent verbal exchange on CNN between him and news anchor Chris Cumo, has taken him from the “swimming pool” into what many are now considering a “drowning pool”. Dennis’ relationship with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, has been under public scrutiny since its inception. Dennis Rodman has been unapologetic about his fond admiration for a man who many in the supposed “Free World” view as an inhumane monster who purportedly violated the human rights of many during his tenured regime. Coupled with the recent ordered execution of his own uncle and the imprisonment of American citizen Kenneth Bae, Kim Jung Un is amidst heavy scrutiny under the bright lights of the world stage. Albeit Dennis Rodman has been a trend setter in the realm of ink to flesh as it pertains to basketball, he is however not the first American to entertain the fantasia of a controversial dictatorial leader. The famous “Rumble In The Jungle” boxing match between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman was sanctioned under Zaire’s then president and controversial dictator Mobutu Sese Seko. The famous 1936 Berlin Olympics was ran under the watchful eye of Adolph Hitler as its Chancellor. Beyoncé Knowles, Usher Raymond and Mariah Carey, all performed at a concert promotionally funded by Moaamar Gadhafi. Jennifer Lopez performed a Happy Birthday serenade for Turkmenistan President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov. All of the fore mentioned singers came under great controversy, to which they responded by suddenly donating their earnings to charity. The point being is that money and power have always resulted in the fervent requester getting what he or she wants. Kim Jung Un was a huge Chicago Bulls fan during the Michael Jordan era. An era which included Dennis Rodman as one of its transcendent stars. I do believe that Kim Jung Un has a great fondness for Dennis Rodman, like any other person would have when hanging out with one of his or her idols (keep in mind Kim Jung Un is only 31 years old). The same could be said about Dennis, who for most of his career has always searched for acceptance without judgement. Friendships are formulated on commonality and manifested thru loyalty, commitment and mutual respect. The relationship should not change based on the opinions of others, if it is indeed genuine and authentic. How many have had friends who they love unconditionally, in spite of them being reviled by others? And as Americans, how do we outwardly protest the actions of Kim Jung Un as it relates to human rights violations, false imprisonment and execution, when we have the dirty laundry of black disenfranchisement, black enslavement and dare I say black genocide to some degree in our own back yards. I have not even touched on the annihilation of the Native Americans to boot. Not to lay this only on Chris Cumo, but he and the other media “assassins” alike, tend to become righteous martyrs for the humanity in other countries and choose to direct their venomous tirades against individuals like Dennis Rodman who make for an easy escape goat for bantering politics, due to him being more emotional than articulate. I ask them why not address the leaders of this country with the same tenacity and take them to task on civil rights violations that happened throughout our country’s history. I was raised that you clean your house before judging the house of others you may visit. The same should apply in this instance as well. We have to be very careful when declaring absolute innocence regarding Kenneth Bae and what led to his imprisonment. We have an entourage of some fifty Americans in North Korea during this Dennis Rodman’s basketball convoy and none of them have been imprisoned or detained during this ambassadorial tour for basketball. Perhaps Dennis has done the one thing that many have yet been able to do, which is make progress with adversary by finding a common ground that does not apply to anything political, but more or less is based on something called mutual respect. To throw in the towel by stating money is his reason for doing this is a lazy answer, because we all do what is necessary to have financial stability. What I find more perplexing is that Kim Jung Un would rather talk to man who dresses like a Cockatoo more so then the world leaders who dress in “proper” attire. Dennis stated “You dive into the water, but you can`t see how deep it is”. Perhaps this is something that the shallow swimmers, as well as, the shallow thinkers can ponder for a minute. Sports bring the world together while politics continue to break the world apart. Once again, Dennis’ accomplishments are overshadowed by his flamboyant nature. It is the one rebound that he has never been successful in securing; his image. #the worm #10 #91