A Black Man's Mind

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Been A Change

Tuesday, May 16, 2006


An Example of the The Boy Wonder at Work.. His identity has been cover to hide him from his arch-nemesis... lol


JUNI! A Story....

Ha! I went to take my own advice and holla at my peoples on this passed Sunday. He wasn't home, I forgot he got a new job, or rather.. his old job back. But, his beautiful wife, who get's "Wife of the Year" award -- in my book -- she was home. Actually, I caught her right as she was pulling out of the drive way and then I remembered I had left a movie over there. She kindly asked if I would stay in the car with the seeds while she ran upstairs.

Or, in her case, slowly walked upstairs, lol, I'm teasing.

Now, normally, I would hesitate to do this because anyone that knows young children, their mother leaving them in the car is like a death sentence lol all you gonna get is tears and screaming.

Suprisingly, the youngest in charge, my man Olu, peeped around the seat.. he looked at me for a second and we both paused... I'm like "uh oh" lol... then was the biggest smile I'd seen in months.. "JUNI!" Lol, now, he and his sister gave me that nickname, or rather, they picked it up by accident. The King and I were having a convo and he had been laughing at himself because he never realized that I was a Junior. This was a couple years ago, they could really get "Junior" to come out, so that became... Juni... lol.. I wear the name like a badge of honor though, to be honest.

We had a deep conversation about grociery shopping, the dollar store, and their favorite spongebob game that doesn't work. Lol, I explained to them the importance of spending time with mommy. Then, we built on why they love the dollar store so much -- toys, of course. But, I'm like, toys.. naw.. y'all need to get knowledge! Lol and the spongebob game... I didn't know what they were talking about. I figured maybe the batteries didn't work but they explained that it was a game for the computer. I dunno, I'll leave that upto my man. By that time, she had come back downstairs with the movie and it was time for us to all depart.

That was the highlight of my month, behind the weekend and day of Sankofa. Peace to the brotha Kwesi! WHATTUP OLU-MAN! Half of the World Classed Wreck'n Crew.. lol.. and it's bad because my man's been watching his pops do Capoeira and Filipino Stick-fighting.. not to mention.. the Jet Li flicks and Stars Wars Jedi Battle Front.. lol... I swore I heard'em say, while he was napping: "Sucka think they good.. sucka think they can wup me! And I know they can't wup me!! Ay Boy! I gotta take'em offa here!!!"

Ha... I love it!

But, you know, all that to say............

Sunday reminded me of a story...

So.. I'm chilling in the King-Dome, with Brotha Omi and we were talking about something... dialectic materialism... and why Huey wasn't a socialist.. I think that's what it was. Anyway, the youngest in charge, The Olu Man Boy Wonder, he rolls up on us and after assaulting me with a nerf football at point-blank-range, he proceeds to ask pops for some grub. Of course, it was kinda early, so, the request was DENIED!

Lol. So, I seen my man get this look in his eyes, but I didn't say anything to Omi. Next thing I know, I go in the kitchen to get fruit.. and my man had gone in the kitchen and pulled a chair out... and upto the microwave. I'm like.. uh oh... so, I called in the Jedi Master... Brotha Omi snuck around the corner and we're watching this go down... he had gotten a bowl from the sink.. poured milk into it and stuck it into the microwave... lol I think he forgot 2 things: 1) the cereal and 2) you don't nuke cereal.. lol... of course, we had to stop him.. but.. lol... it was hilarious. I wish I had gotten a picture. Well, actually.. I did.. but... my camera phone is GAR-BAJJ!


I believe, it was around this time, 3 or 4 years ago. If my memory serves me well. Anyway, the point of this memory is an event that took place in that year. I had a conversation with a woman. Now, there is nothing out of the ordinary about that, right? Yet, in this case, we changed each others lives. Won't go into details. However, it's funny, when you look at yourself, years later and wonder how you got to where you are. Heh, I remember, the first time this person called me -- out of the blue, as they say. It was a Sunday morning and I was out and about, driving to wherever I needed to go. The phone rings and I picked up the phone and she said, "Oh! I didn't think you would pick up this early." I'm thinking, well, okay, I wasn't really doing too much thinking lol but I smiled and kept listening, "I was calling to leave you a message, no particular reason, just to tell you to have a good day." And, I had to go, so the conversation was over almost as fast as it began. Yet, that brief conversation said and did a lot. I felt alive. And, you know, that person probably wouldn't even remember if you asked them. But, I remember though.

Heh, you know, that's why the babies are the best part. Little things. They cannot buy you a house or pay for your groceries or get you expensive flowers but the joy they bring is based on little things, the things that make us what were are.

This thought is not that deep. Just, something from within. When you, in your advanced stages, get to enjoy such things -- it is truly a jewel. Just a thought, I thought I'd share with my brothers and sisters. Thank you.

Anyway, with that, I say peace....

Thursday, May 11, 2006

A True Story

The type of life I lead, a true story, "In the Store." A brotha, 3 times my age, about 65 was having a conversation with Brotha George -- think his name is Gerald. He and Brotha George were talking about George's favorite subject -- "Niggas."

So they're, you know how old folks do, standing around, reminiscing about all these old negroes that they used to run into at the shipyard, the long shoreman hall. Which, little did they know, even though that was in the 50's, I could relate in someways, because my grandfather worked at the Shipyard and he'd sometimes take me, or I'd goto his house and help my grandmother clean the house, make groceries, do her hair, whatever I could and we'd wait for him to get home from work and he'd talk about it.

Anyway, the brotha Gerald starts talking to me and telling me, as if I don't know about Niggas, lol, mind you.. this is hampton roads, va.. home of the nigga kingdoms -- Hampton U, NSU, and ODU -- lol.

He starts telling me this story about going to church one day. You know, he's got his blue suit on, his conk, his finger nails done up and all. This big car pulls up in front of him and two brothas get out, big brothas. They start asking him these questions like, "How are you doing brotha? What you waiting for?" So, he's telling them he's early for Bible Study and blah blah blah. They get closer and say, "Well come here brotha, we've got somebody we want you to meet." His response, "well, naw I got to goto bible study." But, they grab him by the arms and pretty much, drag him to the car. As he leans in to see who it is, they push him into the back seat.

He pauses.

Sitting up front is a man, that man turns around and smiles and greets him.

That man is Malcolm X.

So, he's telling me about them taking him down to the Mosque ..7 and they sit him up front, right between those two big brothas. As Brother Minister Malcolm is speaking, they keep saying, "that's right brotha minister!" And they look at him and say, "ain't that right!?" He's shook, so, he's like "yeah! yeah!" After hearing Malcolm speak, he was down with it though, so he kept coming back and eventually they dropped the Muhammad Speaks paper. Took him in the back, asked, "how many you want brotha?" He responded, "Um, I'll take about 10 or 12, for me and my friends." They yell to the back, "Give him 50!"

He's, of course, like, "whoa whoa! I said 10!" They tell him, "Oh, it's alright brotha, you'll make the money back."

That was his introduction in NOI, Mosque ..7, under Brother Minister Malcolm X Shabazz.

By now, 2 things:

(1) Another older brother walks up and joins the conversation and (2) I'm standing there, GONE. I'm like, whoa, whoa, whoa... you KNEW Malcolm X. Right? He's like aw yeah, yeah, etc.

He tells me, "but yeah, young brotha, it's good to see what you're doing over there in Norfolk, keep it going." You know, the usual words of encouragement. Mind you, this was when I was 17 or 18, not even when I was president of M.A.P, I think I had just become Vice. Pres.

By now, he's getting ready to leave.

I'm like, "Well, how bout, can I get your number? I can call you." I'm trying to learn more about Malcolm, you know?

His response...

"Aw naw Brotha, I know I'm going to see you again."

I'm like.. "But.. but"

He says...

"I'm depending on YOU Brotha. I know you won't let us down."

Him and the old brother chime in together

"See you later brother, later brother george."

And as he's going out the door.. he says.. mind you.. this brotha KNEW Malcolm, rolled with Malcolm, was brought into the Mosque by Malcolm, lived in Harlem... Elijah.. all that...

"I'm depending on YOU to bring that consciousness brotha, I'll be seeing you."

Sunday, May 07, 2006

My Arms...

My Arms Are Tired

Well, Sankofa is finished and what an experience it was. I was able to build with master teachers, reflect with elders, teach little children, communicate with community members, and provide a service to them all, above everything else. It was a glorious day and I bear witness to the strength and power of our people, even moreso than before.

I am grateful, I am overwhelmed. I am also, tired. Not tired, like, lack of sleep but the same tired that brother Malcolm must have felt. Of course, I am not comparing myself to Malcolm X, however, I am comparing the struggle of those who wish to do righteousness and walk the road, less traveled. I have learned so many things, I cannot possibly muster the energy to type them all, atleast right now.

I will say though, that I have learned many life lessons and I will share a few of them:

As a man, I learned the basic human needs of a man. All of this work and for it all to be over, I can honestly say that it is very fulfilling on one level, however, at a basic level it showed me the power of relationships:

-On a level of friendship, that solidarity and support is the only motivation. Money, notoriety, those things are nothing and I never find myself craving either. Just to know that people are with you and not only in concept but beside you, in the trench with you, getting their hands dirty. This type of experience is really what makes an army so powerful, regardless of whether or not you agree with all of the politics, when you're in the trenches and bullets are flying over your head and your life is in the hands of the man next to you, even if you don't like that, politics and biases are out of the window, it is about accomplishing a mission and surviving the attack. I think that is the perfect analogy. I feel bonded with my comrades, I see them as a part of my own family, really.

-On a level of partnership, I find that there are basic needs that I have and I strive to better understand the disconnect created by the slave breaking process. The weakening of the Man and the sharpening of the Women was a treacherous game played on us. Our women became so strong and so pressured, that many times they become hard, they neglect to explore and exert the qualities, the feminine principle, the water, that only they posess, as the mothers of civilization. Men, not understanding these qualities or their value, in Western Society and Westernized Eastern Socities, he hated Woman for those same qualities. These qualities lost are qualities that Man is actually in need of, especially in his times of trial. I mean, simple things, yet, they all fall under the umbrella of nurturing. At the end of the day, I do not want a dime and I don't want any news stories about me, all I want is basic human interaction -- touch. Not really even in an intimate way, just to be able to have someone to tell me they're proud of me; rub my head, rub my shoulders without me needing to ask. That is truly a crown jewel and it reflects the moon-like qualities that women have, pulling the tide from low to high. I mean, especially when dealing with the work of liberation. Most times brothers face a wide array of challenges, nine times out of ten, he's already dealing with the pressures of organizing , alongside his family constantly questioning his path, the stress of opposition (which is inevitable), even society at large. A Woman's touch to Man, is one of the wonders of the world. Affection -- it is as the dew on a summers morning, cooling the grounds over which his long journey must pass.

As an organizer, I learned the importance of asking for help and utilizing all available human resources. I learned the importance of pre-emptive action and early preparation, even moreso than the standard 2 weeks. I learned the power of the spoken word and the importance of mastering promotions.

As a son, I learned the importance of setting aside time from struggle to deal internally with family issues. Leaders are notorious for becoming so busy that their families are neglected. This issue is, perhaps, why you have not seen any brothers and sisters whose children carried their torch to the same magnitude that they did.

I have learned much more, however, I don't have the energy to continue y'all...

My arms are tired.

Monday, May 01, 2006

The Death of Technology

No more, I'm tired of it. I often see people marvel at how wonderful our "technology" is. However, I sit back and do the 1 on a lot of things and you really cannot even call most of the things we develop in this age, "technology." Building cities and magnificent monuments without destroying the environment -- THAT'S technology. Building cities and skyscrapers while destroying the environment, cutting down forests -- NOT technology.

Anyway, to avoid a lecture, I'ma get to my point directly this time..

My thing is the cell-phone. As a businessman, my cellphone is very useful to me, because I can get things relayed and/or done nearly instantly.

However, on a personal level, I hate cellhpones with a passion. Another reason I cannot call this technology is because it degenerates human developmenetal stages. Communication Skills, for example. In this AIM generation, where, you go into a store and the cashier won't even say "hello" to you. How are we gon' be universal builders, diplomats, constructors of nations.. and we cannot even communicate or express ourselves?

The cellphone, especially, de-personalizes relationships and outright makes people lazy as hell...

I'm sick and tired of it, I hate it.

Instead of calling, we'll text message someone.

Knowing, that if they called you, it was probably a reason they called you, to have a conversation or to relay a full message.

Instead, people will send you 30 text messages, rather than get off their ass and call you. I'm not even responding to the joints anymore, unless they're business related or they are critically important.

Be the change you wish to see in the world, right?

I'd rather call you at work than send you a buncha damn notes, that gets monotonous. Besides, I ain't tryina lose my vision, staring at a damn cellphone.

Instant messenger, I gotta dead that shit too.

Now, I know people in other countries. I'll let them slide, international rates can be crazy.

However, otherwise, it's sickening.

First of all, you lose the meaning of the conversation, largely, because you cannot truly internalize and respond to conversational cues, which are only apparent in vocal conversation.

Often, as we know, it's not really WHAT you say, it's HOW you say it, and you cannot pick up these type things, accurately, on no damn AIM.

I also, think it's rude. If I call you, don't wait 6 hours and then instant message my phone. I called you, if I wanted to send you an electronic message on Instant Pestering, I would have done so.

People I don't know too well, they can slide with this one, but, everyone else... ERRRT!

I've seen people, literally, sit down and have an argument with their girl/boyfriend/partner/wife/husband on a cellphone. I'm like, why don't you call? You likely to misunderstand the connotation behind something and react improperly, messing with that damn phone. Nobody listens to me, though. Till a week later, "Yo... you was right... she ain't even mean it like that."

My response from now on is, "you got a phone."

Other than that, besides business contacts who need not call me regularly, folks is gettin' deleted out the phone and those who call, go back in.

Electronics lead us too often to exploit even those close to us, and I've earned too many degrees that tell me, never to take anything or anyone for granted. I know a ^%**$ ain't gonna exploit me.

This is part of what's wrong with us, we're lazy. I know, I know, heard it before. But, I don't see no changes. We get worse. We are lazy and irresponsible and impersonal that we won't even do something simple, like, checking on a friend or family member to see if they made it to their destination safely. We don't call to check on each other anymore, we send a damn text message quick though: "Im txtn u 2 c hw u doin :)"

WTF? Get some personal skills. Everybody talking about RBG this, RBG that. RBG mean FAMILY. RBG mean NATIONHOOD. RBG mean POWER. Is that how a functional family treats each other? Is that how a nation stays bonded? Is there power in any of that?


So, fight the power. Lazy mufcaz.

Friday, April 28, 2006

HipHop and De' Sistren

Keep in mind, that three major entities that play these degrading videos and songs nationally have Black women as presidents of the companies:

Christina Norman (Mtv Pres.) and Debra Lee (BET Pres.), even Cathy Hughes (Radio One Pres. -- though it's black owned and white operated).

If any of these women went to Spelman's campus (or any other campus of Black women who are justified in protesting these images and lyrics), would they protest against them?

Or, would they be like the women's group that gave the sista responsible for Hustle And Flow, an award.

This is a case of Black females exploiting Black females and we are not hearing about this. There is another documentary, I cannot recall the name of it, I wish I could, however, it shows and proves about the majory of A&R's, who happen to be female, and how these are black females telling these little girls to pull up their skirts, put on more make-up, perm their hair, dye their hair, dress and dance a certain way.

Of course, you've got the brothers buck-dancing and you've got the exploitative males like Little X shooting the videos, but, you would think that sistas would feel each others pain.

Big ups, to.. what's her name.. I think it's Hamri or something like that, she's done some dope, dope, dope music videos and bucked many of the trends/stereotypes.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Real $&**(^% Quotes

"I mean man, money ain’t everything. What is the profit for a man to gain if he gotta lose his soul?" ~ T.I.