Friday, February 27, 2009

Ziggy's Friday Forethought*: Haters.

*this post was inspired by a conversation I overheard at work today. Of course I couldn't say anything to the customer, but if I could have, it would have went a little something like this...
It's time to bury the word HATER.

I'll make this short and to the point: over the past few years, the word "hater" has become some sort of verbal monster; being spewed out of mouths of any and everybody. As soon as you so much as disagree with the way a person breathes, you're labeled a hater. Maino released "Hi Hater" and I practically laughed my ass off; I wasn't aware that Maino was known or cared about enough to have haters in the first place.

Worse than the abuse of the word is the actual reasoning behind why people use it. Some people love to say they have haters for the most minimal of reasons--just because someone doesn't like the color of those Chucks you have on does not constitute them as a hater, genius. They just don't like the color. Now, if that person happens to hop in their car and roll over your Chucks with your feet still in them, yelling something like "You'll never wear another pair of Chucks again, mutha f&*^@!", they miiiiight be a hater. Or in serious need of a room with padded walls and a jacket so they can hug themselves all day.

In closing: kill it, people. There's nothing wrong with people disagreeing with your style/way of life/occupation/etc. No one has to like or appreciate everything you do. However, if there are people who spread vicious rumors or basically attack your character, that person is unhappy and could be labeled a hater. Other than that, keep it moving; realize that in life, there are some people who thrive on being unhappy, and you could be the fuel that keeps them going.

By the way, if you're one of those people who are constantly claiming to have haters, but have no evidence to back it up whatsoever? Anddddd not only do you make the claim, but notice that people tend to stay away from you? Anddddd you're a person who, with the more haters you claim to have, the less friends you actually keep?
You don't have haters. You're probably just an asshole.
You're welcome.

*I'm debating on having Friday Forethoughts as a regular thing; probably to be typed during my last half hour of work. Thoughts, anyone?

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Shutup, You're So Annoying!

I could've titled this better, but King Julian from Madagascar was the first thing that came to mind when I had to think of something funny to keep from getting pissed off.
It's very rare that I have run-ins with insecure males, but for the past few days I've been experiencing a close encounter of the jealous kind. And to think, this started YEARS ago! Allow me to set the stage for you:

-Boy meets Girl
-Girl shows interest in boy
-Girl is happy to see interest reciprocated
-Girl and Boy spend time together and engage in intimate conversation
-Boy suddenly becomes somewhat of a jerk, throwing former "acquaintances" in Girl's face; showing hints of jealousy
-Girl loses interest due to Boy's constant accusations

That's pretty much it. Didn't really get anywhere for my feelings to be attached in any fashion, so there was really no love loss. I kept it moving. He was a homeboy, someone who came over; chilled and played Halo with me. Sometimes we had "relationship" conversations, most of the time we tripped. The problem occurred when he would throw a former friend in my face. He happened to know the guy I was dating before we became cool, so he found it funny to make jokes about dude (henceforth Guy #1) and I . True, me and Guy #1 were a little serious. But, other dude and I had already discussed that situation; I informed him that I was done, and it was (supposed to be) a wrap. My guess is that he must have been in a similar situation before, but the only difference may have been the total opposite of what happened between him and I. Nevertheless, dude continued to accuse me of hanging with Guy #1, so much to the point that it was a part of every conversation. I finally got tired of it and detached myself from him.

Bam. Let's fast forward to today, almost four years ago. In those four years, we've become "hi" and "bye" buddies; having lenghty conversation only when convenient. He also knows of my current relationship, simply meaning he knows that I'm involved. Our talks never get more serious past who's better than who in Halo, so to say that he knows nothing new about me at all would be saying the least.

Imagine my surprise when I heard from him today, and our conversation went a little something like this:

Insecure Yo: So, you got any children yet? Married yet?
Me: Ha, very funny. No children, no marriage.
Insecure Yo: I mean, I thought you woulda had like, 3 kids by now; way you bunned up with ya boy.
Me: What are you talking about?
Insecure Yo: You know, you and Cuba Gooding Jr. looking dude. When you gonna just stop playing and ditch the lame?
Me: Back to this again...
Insecure Yo: Sike, sike; you know me, you know I joke. Nobody worrying about you and Eddie Winslow, whatever the f*ck his name is.
Me: You don't know his name, and what is the point of this anyway? You jealous?
Insecure Yo: Me? Jealous? Nah, shorty; I told you I'm not worrying about you...

And blah blah blah...I made a slightly serious observation, and told him that he loves me. I was really joking, just trying to get him to shut up. He basically took that as his opportunity to reassure me that he's joking, he always jokes, and he's never had feelings for me. It would have been somewhat conceivable if this whole interaction was new to me, and sadly it's not. Dude is barely a year younger than me; you would think the whole pituitary gland/puberty/hormones phases ran its course, some maturity would have been a result. Of course, I'm incorrect. Naturally, I'm stumped because I don't understand his behavior to begin with. It doesn't make sense. I thought it was supposed to be

girl likes boy+boy likes girl=all is well
girl likes boy-boy pushes girl away/boy wants girl back after she's moved on=wtf

I liked him. He knew I liked him. He started being an asshole. I got over it. He wants me back? Sounds like that "Got Til It's Gone" Syndrome, and unfortunately, homeboy is a victim. I wish he knew that he could share his genuine feelings with me, instead of this 3rd grade "I know he likes me because he beat me up at recess" mess. We are adults, and we should have conversations like adults. Are his feelings that hurt about whatever that I had to be an outlet for his frustration, showing his like for me in the most immature way? Who knows. I'd rather not deal with this at all, but I have a feeling it'll happen again soon. Sorry for making this so long, but I know someone has to feel my pain. Someone has to have had a close encounter of the jealous kind.


Monday, February 23, 2009

Letting You In.

When I sat down to blog, the first thing I was thinking of typing was another rendition of that Facebook virus "25 Random Things About Me". But, no; I decided to be an onion and shed another layer for my readers*. Give you guys a deeper look into the encryptic mass that is my mind. It's a trip sometimes; having my inner most thoughts on a daily basis could cripple some people, but Someone thought it necessary to instill them in me. So, that mini epiphany aside, I'm going to talk about something I love more than anything. Ha! I said, something, so surprise...I won't be including another blogisode in the "I Love This Man: Scuba Steve" files with this post.

I'm talking about Audio Engineering.

It's my passion, literally. Engineering sound is something that I've loved for a long time; not as long as I've loved music but it's a pretty close second. And I don't just mean faders and pans, I'm talking signal flow--EQs, phantom power high/low cuts...all the in-betweens. Even went to school for it, and now it's something I'm slowly starting to make moves in. Today, I realized that I have my goals in order; I consider it an accomplishment because not only is each goal detailed, but I am doing the things to make my goals attainable. To put it plainly: I'm feeling pretty damn good about the way wheels are beginning to turn. There was a time where I was often pessimistic about a lot of things, but constant trips to rock bottom have finally served a purpose, and now I'm actually seeing a silver lining. Plus, I also started noticing that my negative thoughts had a habit of coming to fruition, so I learned quickly to not speak every thing into existance.
Long and short? I'd love to be the Chief Engineer/Mixer of a recording studio. Behind the scenes is definitely where it's at for me; the idea of being the person to make your music really sound like something makes me drunk with power. Honestly, I love the fact that it really is a science to sound, and a certain technique that should be mastered when it comes to the art of Mixing. I'm not talking about mixing like your favorite DJ, I mean automating the horns to crescendo when the chorus drops in; or tweaking a gate on kick drum to give it that sound like the pedal is made of feathers when it strikes the head. Or, better yet; what kinds of microphones require phantom power to fully function? What's the difference between a monitor fader and an input fader? I know. And it's because I love knowing that I figure the best way to make money is to be the best in what I love best.
My brother is a person who has somewhat the same desire as me, so we've put our brains together and created a production company. I won't be crazy and reveal every tiny detail, but I will say we have a team. We're basically a family of drummers, writers, dancers, actors, tag artists, emcees...we've got a team. Please note: this is not some lame attempt to "feel myself" in any matter. Arrogance is a quality I tend to have zero tolerance for, and hypocrisy is another that gets under my skin. I wish not to combine the two, but I am happy to have certain people in my life because I know they're here for a reason. Sliding back to the matter at hand, I would like to mention that the first track that you hear when stopping by my blog is actually a track that we've made. We go by the name of BlackMuzik, and if this post wasn't long enough already, I'd include a backstory on how we got the name. Next post, I promise. Anyways, we have a Myspace page up, and if you ask us, it's doing fairly well.
That's just in case you didn't see the link in the above paragraph. We're always looking for new friends to share our music with, so if you've got a Myspace page somewhere in your social networking rolodex, add us to your list of cool friends.
All in all, I'm loving the direction I'm going in. It was a tricky start, but I'm glad to get the ball rolling in some shape or fashion. Maybe I'll have another post about this in the near future, but with even better news.
Thanks for reading; I know this was long, but you learned something else about me. How cool is that?!
*Just wanted to say a quick Welcome to new readers. Having readers makes me all warm and fuzzy inside. Thanks again, all of you are awesome...and your blogs rock!

Friday, February 20, 2009

If This Is A Joke...I'm Not Laughing.

Allow me to begin this blog with a backstory. I've been having this idea for a post regarding everyone's favorite...DJ? Overpaid hypeman? Loudmouth? Pick one, either way...I'm talking about DJ Khaled. Chances are, if you've listened to the radio (blah) once or twice in the past 3 or 4 years, you've probably heard his high pitched voice interrupting some million-artist-featured (which, by the way, starts to become the same crew of people) track, reassuring you that "WE DA BEST!"

So, after I did that little intro, I was going to pose the question: Will Khaled Really Go In This Time? Then I was going to briefly touch on his growing beef with 50 Cent, who has officially kicked everything into the millionth gear by bringing Khaled's moms into the beef. I was going to include a link to this video (since embedding is disabled on almost each one available), T-Pain's "Karaoke"; a video in which Khaled can be seen kicking over tables and pointing in elderly people's faces, threatening to "pull their skirts" and "go in"...let's not forget his promise to always "Go HARD".

Once I was done with establishing my story, I would briefly question if, at the heightening of this Fif/Ross/Khaled beef; said DJ would finally sh*t or get off the pot by "going hard" and "going in" as he claims he always does. On someone else's track. I mean, I always hear him saying something to this degree, but I have seen nothing that would make me say, "Yo! That dude Khaled really goes hard!"
I was going to let the readers know how peeved I am at this guy for making money by doing absolutely nothing. My story was going to be the bees knees, I swear it.
Then, I read this story, and now I don't know if I want to laugh or cry.

"Khaled, known as of late for bringing slews of artists together on his popular posse cuts will officially be taking over Def Jam's southern division, once led by legendary rapper Scarface."
"Khaled will oversee such artists' releases as Ludacris, Young Jeezy and Ace Hood. Rick Ross, who has worked with Khaled on numerous projects, will have the fist album released during Khaled's tenure - the upcoming Deeper Than Rap."

Wait. The hypeman is going to be PRESIDENT of DEF JAM South?! Where the hell have I been?! How did this happen?! Does anyone else see a problem with this? He's going to be overseeing artists that have been in the game longer than him. Wow.
I'm officially afraid of the future of Hip Hop.
If Weezy's rock album goes platinum the first week out...I may just take a blogging hiatus.

So I found the video after finishing the post...didn't want to go back and edit, so here it is at the end. Check your dude Khaled out: threatening or annoying? You be the judge.
btw: I'm really hoping that the article was really some sort of pre-April Fool's joke. HipHopDX is known for dropping a few phony funnies.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

just for kicks: peep the header photo...

...yeah, the picture at the tippy top of the blog. The biiiig picture.
Ha, it's me. Just had a sweet moment of nostalgia with moms for a quick second; started looking at pictures from yesteryear. You know, sit on the couch and reminisce for hours type of nostalgia. That picture was taken in a time where my daddy's short fro was still only slightly peppered with gray, and me and mommy's hair was cornrowed in similar patterns...with wooden beads, thank you. It also reminds me of a time I sometimes miss most; a time when phrases like "bank account" and "payment due" weren't in my not-too-limited vernacular. A time when I had no idea what cooties even was...and what was the big deal about boys, anyway?? The only thing I was concerned with was being in front of the tv in time for Care Bears, Smurfs, Reading Rainbow (my all-time-FAVORITE); and making sure I carried my "My First Library" series with me whereever I went.

Ahhhh. I really, really miss those days.

But...check the Garfield nightgown, though. And...are those minnie mouse slippers?
Who's working on building a time machine?! Sheesh!


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Monkeys and Stimulus Bills...there's a connection?!

Photo courtesy of New York Post

Errr uhhh...WTF?
From my understanding, this is supposed to be a comic about a woman who was attacked by her pet chimp. But...what does the stimulus bill have to do with it?
This was actually posted in today's paper. Sean Delonas is the credited cartoonist.
In my opinion, a picture is worth a thousand words. If this cat can come up with a logical explanation as to why a chimpanzee is related to our Pres' first legislative victory, maybe I'd consider seeing the other side of the coin. Until then, I'd like to call this casual racism...? Maybe? I mean, can you blame me? I'm doing the visual math.
Two white police officers+one dead monkey=stimulus bill joke
Somebody has some explaining to do, but luckily; our good ole permed up buddy, the Rev. Al Sharpton, is already on the case.

Sure, Sharpton (and maybe myself) could be making a mountain out of a mole hill. Maybe he's implying that whoever wrote the stimulus bill (The House?) had the mental capacity of a monkey? Yeah, maybe that's it.
But,'s been scientifically proven that monkeys are as smart as humans, Zig. Look at the woman who got attacked. Her chimp let himself out of the house by using a key and unlocking the door. All on his own.
Welp, my self conscious just told me to rule that connection out.
So...what do you guys think? Is this something that should be swept under the rug?
Is it really that serious? What should happen to Delonas? Are you just as confused as I am?
Drop your thoughts in the comment box.


"I wrote this blog a long time ago, it was the dopest blog I ever wrote..." '94.

Okay, not really; but here's something I posted on my Myspace blog a while back, before I discovered the blogger world. It was one of those long, long nights when thinking too hard can lead to...well, what you're about to read. It's basically a collections of things I've learned in Life's Relationships Course. Strictly my own opinion, of course, but if you feel the need to share your thoughts on the four letter word that gets us all in trouble, don't hesitate to drop a comment.

Love gives someone else the ability to hurt you more than you could ever hurt yourself. By either saying or returning those three words, and meaning them, you're opening yourself to a world that's new to you; and sometimes you may never figure it out. Walk the roads with the skeletons in your closet as your buddy system, you may have to return to them for twisted guidance. Past hurt will either tell you what to do, or what NOT to pursue. The only choice you have in love is when to love harder; stopping is an option, but sometimes not an easy one. Love can sometimes equal to stupidity, it can be compared to staring directly into the sun; looking into something so beautiful for so long may blind you.

Be careful in love, some make it out with their sanity, some not at all. Each experience should be taken as a lesson, take notes; there will be pop quizzes. The final exam is in the end...have you grown? Or have you been blinded too much to grow?

When asking "what's wrong?", "nothing" will be the loudest word you ever hear. Period.

Silence can kill you, fill the room like the coldest tension. Making the first move could be like stepping out onto a minefield. The smallest thing can set off the most disastrous reaction; think and choose your words wisely.

Love also has a positive, brighter side. Growth, maturity, maybe wisdom. Some of the greatest lessons in life can be learned in love, if "done" correctly. Love is selflessness. Despite the popular saying, love IS saying sorry. Humility is often a trait human beings lack; love will help you to develop this. Love can make you smarter, a relationship is a general waste if you aren't learning. It is acceptance under all conditions, and in that, it's learning that sometimes there is no such thing as a "flaw"; just a personality trait that you may not have.
Love is maturity when, God forbid, it's all over.

Love is not stagnation. If you feel there's nowhere to go in a relationship, sticking around and waiting for change is pointless as well as naive.
Love is laughter, anger, sadness. How you cope with the emotional rollercoaster will affect you for your lifetime. Love is never perfect, because perfection doesn't exist. Fairy tales aren't even perfect until the end. Love is truth even when it hurts, that's when it counts most.
Love is a ride and a journey. YOUR decisions in love will ultimately affect not only your life, but that of your mate. Your thoughts are ultimately his/her thoughts, use those wisely, as well.
Love is loving yourself harder make it a breeze loving someone else just as hard.


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

EVERY girl in the world, really?

I'm sure that there are plenty of blogs and websites who have been writing about this track; it's been out for a good minute now. Lil Wayne and crew (Gudda Gudda, Drake, Mack Maine and Jae Millz) dropped the song "Every Girl", and I'm sure it's the manwhore's anthem for 2009...and maybe beyond, unless someone comes up with something smuttier.

Personally, I'm not really a fan of the track for obvious reasons. The hook alone is enough for me shut it out: "...I wish I could f*ck every girl in the world..." Wow. That's awesome, really. You guys really made me feel like the garbage God placed me on this earth to be. Feel free to share your desires of sexually exploiting me on wax, I'm sure your boys will get a kick out of it. But, as much as I dislike the song, I'm pretty sure it'll be a hit because why? Because it's LITTLE FRIGGIN' WAYNE. I actually like Wayne...on his good days, i.e. "Dr. Carter", "Let The Beat Build"; you know, songs he does when he doesn't sound like he's got every drug you can name in front of him in the booth.

Let me get to the point of this post: as annoying as the hook is, there is one verse that crosses this joint over from annoying to just plain disturbing.

Sanaa Lathan
Meagan Good
Angelina Jolie
D Woods
For free suites I'd give Paris Hilton all-nighters
In about 3 years, holla at me Miley Cyrus
I don't discriminate, no not at all
Kit-Kat a midget, if that ass off, I break her off
I exchange Vcards with the retards
And get behind a Christian like Dior cause he are...

Um, Mack Maine...wtF? The line in bold is what made me rewind his verse on my first listen; I was pretty much cool with the first few lines. But midgets, Christians (which I somewhat understand due to that church girl/freak stigma) and the mentally challenged? Is this supposed to be hot?

They're making a video. Somebody help me.


Friday, February 13, 2009

the post of randomness: new section alert!

Take a look to the right of my blog. Yep, right above the followers list.

I'd like to introduce my new section of my blog layout: Why Watch Comedy...When I've Got Family? It'll feature some of the funniest and most random things I've ever heard, from the people I love most: my family. I've got one up now from my good friend Franky, link to his blog is included. I'll try to change it up as frequently as I can, and if there are links I'll provide them.

Yeah, I know. I kinda wasted space, but who cares? I think my new section is theeeee sheeeet. Feel free to comment on them as well, whenever you can.


my official valentine's day post: so what?

I'm in love with love as much as the next near-mid-20s woman, but when it comes to Valentine's me the Scrooge.

...well, maybe not the Scrooge, but there's nothing about this "holiday" that sends me into some estrogen charged frenzy. It's just another day, just like today. Friday the 13th? So what? Valentine's Day? And, your point is? The Hallmark headquarters are probably having a huge office party right now; V-Day is second (behind Christmas) in money spent on cards, candy, flowers and all things red with hearts. Sure, it's a beautiful idea; 24 hours of professing your undying love to your husband/wife, boyfriend/girlfriend, partner, lover, FwB or FB (and I don't mean Facebook). But, realistically, why not make everyday your own Valentine's Day?

Of the few female friends I have, more than half of them have expressed the need to have something done for them tomorrow. Someone's boyfriend better get her this, and someone's boyfriend better take her out tomorrow, or he's in trouble; etc. But the reality for that half is...they don't get anything else on any other day. So, my opinion is this: if you're so caught up in ONE DAY, you have subconsciously submitted to the fact that you are worth one day of pampering, love, affection, what have you. So...if your mate only makes you feel special tomorrow, what about the other 320 days left in this year? Do they not count since you got your spa treatment, dinner, concert tickets and good loving on V-Day? Think about it.
Scuba and I talked recently about tomorrow and we both reached the agreement that it's really not a big deal. I don't ask for much, and he surprises me at random with little things all of the time. I think that's enough. Sure we may go out tomorrow (duh...gotta see some people get hacked up by my man Vorhees), but I'm not expecting bells and whistles because some naked baby with a bow and arrow is being celebrated.

For those who are doing it big, celebrating V-Day with the most expensive gifts, outings and long ass Zales receipts: have fun. I'm not someone who totally detests any of these things, they're just not for me. But whatever floats your boat...

For the people who are somewhat salty about not having a Valentine for tomorrow: be your own Valentine. How about that? That way you can only be upset with yourself for not picking up a last minute card. If you don't like the idea, there's always April 14.


damn, baltimore.

I'm getting pretty sick of blogging about this, but it's intriguing and saddening at the same time. So saddening, in fact, that from this post on, any dealings with Baltimore City and its homicide rate will have the title "damn, baltimore". "Oh, baltimore" just doesn't seem to be enough anymore.

I haven't been watching the news much since I really don't sit still long enough anymore, but I do play catch up via the mobile device, and I just discovered that our number of homicides has jumped to 29. Now, in part 4, I stated that the number was 21. That was on 1/30; so in almost two weeks, we've had 8 more.

But Ziggy, why change the title of the blog for eight more homicides? Can't you keep adding more parts?
Trust me, I'd rather not post this at all, but since I live in this city I figured I'd shed light on exactly what's going on. And the number of homicides increasing is little to no reason for me to change up the title, but this definitely is.

After finding this last night, my brother and I have dubbed this THE MURDER MAP.

Sadly, you can click "The Murder Map" to try it out on your own.
The Baltimore Sun has actually integrated an interactive map on their website so you can see the exact locations of the homicides for 2009. It also goes back as 2008 (234) and 2007 (282). The map has a key at the bottom; red balloons represent homicides, green for blunt force, black for stabbing, blue for asphyxiation and white is unknown. According to the murder map, 25 of the 29 homicides this year have been shootings.

But, wait! There's more!
If you click on the tiny balloons, you'll get a detailed description of the victim's name, place of homicide, the victim's race, age and gender; cause of death, date of death and where the victim died. The fact that this is something provided over the internet is simply insane.

So, readers in other states: do you guys have any..."tools"...such as this? If you do, feel free to share them; just curious to know if there are others that exist...because if we're the only ones to have this, I'm afraid.


Wednesday, February 11, 2009

poetry quickie: blessings

Thanks for coming through
Just when I figured out how
To come through for You.

*Just a reminder that sometimes we don't get those prayers answered until we do a little of the work.
It's hump day people! The weekend is upon us! And I feel a blog spree coming...
...yall be safe.



Okay, so... I'd like to say I'm sort of tough. I mean, some may agree; judging by my posts, I really haven't posted anything I always talk about music, something random and always with a splash of humor, sarcasm and real thought. But, every so often, I let loose and simoultaneously let my guard down. It can be a good thing, a great thing...I just hate being too...mushy. If I'm not writing it in a poem, you won't hear it from me. My own defense mechanism. I'll let you in if I deem you worthy enough.

The only thing that gets me open is music. Music is a powerful thing, you know. High frequencies can make you feel alive, jubilant; while lower frequencies can drive emotions of anger and sexual energy. Listen to your favorite Plies song. That's why you feel like stabbing someone after getting it in with your chick...on the same song. Depending on what I'm listen to, if you pay attention you can almost easily determine my mood. I listen to what centers me in a given situation.

Now, if you've been reading, you'll remember my post about Beyonce (hilarious video included) a while back. Well, B's done it again, dammit. I only took a couple of listens to I Am...Sasha Fierce, so I didn't give it a chance to do my usual nerd thing and dissect every track. Recently, Scuba and I had been hitting some rough patches for a little while now, so naturally I've been turning to music to soothe me. I was sitting at the PC one day, letting iTunes randomly play out my life, and I stumble across some of the most beautiful lyrics I've heard...well, not most (do you listen to Phyllis Hyman?!), but given the situation, I was feeling a little sensitive at the time.

Damn you, Mrs. Knowles-Carter, for "Halo".

The song was so...necessary at that time; combined with my emotions of the moment, I was almost moved to tears. Some songs (if "formatted" correctly) can tap into your mental, and before you know it, you're belting along, picturing your loved one standing in front of you while you serve him what's his a la "And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going". Not that that was me or anything.

I'll have you know, Scuba and I are doing great. Life just has the habit of forcing lessons on you when you least expect it. But the truth is, and I tell him this on a daily basis, this is the best relationship I've been in...ever. The love is there, the respect is definitely there and he's my best friend, so we don't have to worry about awkward moments when it's time to have adult conversations. I could say so much about one man...but I'm tough, remember? That's all you get for one month.


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

BET does something right...word?

It happened again! Another nerdgasm!

BET redeemed themselves for their (mostly) sucky programming with last night's BET Honors. Hosted by Gabrielle Union, BET paid recognition to pioneers and legends in the African American community such as Tyler Perry, Mary J. Blige, Magic Johnson and a personal favorite of mine, Judith Jamison.

Music was great; each honoree got a special performance by artists like Anthony Hamilton, Queen Latifah, Stevie Wonder, Monica (she's back!), Anita Baker...

pause. Anita Baker's performance gave me chills! Best performance of the night by far. Performing right after Monica to honor Mary J. Blige, she definitely brought the old school vibe to the forefront, singing one of her hits, "Rapture". Although Anita brought the vocal fire, Monica got a standing ovation for her performance, and more for her heart-to-heart moment with Mary on stage, where she was quoted to say "...most of all, you taught me to love myself, and let him catch up with the woman that I've become..." Wow! Even my brother stood up and applauded her for that. Scuba stood up and gave me a kiss. Awww.

Anita is truly an example of the music I miss and love. Whoooooo!

If you watched, what were your favorite moments? You know how to let me know...drop those bombs! And by bombs...I mean comments. :)


Monday, February 9, 2009

grammy nerdgasms

Yes, I said nerdgasm. That was what I experienced as I watched the 51st Annual Grammy Awards last night. I won't get into too many highlights, but if you have sense you'll know that that was possibly the best Grammy Awards in a pretty long time. Every performance was awesome, even down to Neil Diamond, who looked a tad bit stoned during his set. The only thing I didn't agree with was the last award for Record of the Year, given to Robert Plant and Alison Krauss. Nothing against them, I actually love their music, but considering who they were up against--Coldplay, Lil' Wayne, Radiohead and Neyo--the fact that they pulled that off is still a little questionable to me. Chrisette Michele won a Grammy for "Be OK", M.I.A. looked beautiful on stage, pregnant belly and all; Beyonce was nowhere to be found and neither were Rihanna and Chris Brown, whose reasons for their no-shows were revealed earlier this morning. Whitney looked blasted, J-Hud pulled off an incredible performance, Boyz II Men were spotted singing backup for JT and Al Green(?), the Jonas Brothers performed with Stevie Wonder, T.I. and JT's "Dead and Gone" was spectacular, Adele sang effortlessly alongside Sugarland...the list goes on and on. Nerdgasm, I tell you. NERDGASM!

So now I'm going to upset a couple of people. Now, being a lover of all music, I loved every performance last night. Carrie Underwood's performance of "Last Name" was excellent, and I actually love Sugarland! But...if I have to pick a favorite performance last night, who would it be?

If you guessed (typically?) the "Hip Hop Summit" styled-performance of "Swagga Like Us", you're wrong. Don't get me wrong, the performance was great; the Dean Martin theme and black/white view was dope, and as mentioned above, M.I.A. rocked it. But, my personal pick for this years' best performance goes to Radiohead. Thom Yorke and crew teamed up with the USC Trojans Marching Band and tore the place down. I mean, come on. They had a marching band!!!

Best performance of the night, hands down. Radiohead is already a genius group, and live they're even better. Listen to the music, and you'll see what I mean.

What were your favorite moments/performances last night? Drop your thoughts in the comment box. :o)


Friday, February 6, 2009

oh, baltimore pt 5: yapp city

Wanna know something funny?
I talked myself out of being robbed the other night.

Now, I've been blogging about B-More and the violence that inhabits it. But, I never would have thought that the next entry in the "oh, baltimore" series would be my own story. I also never thought that my story would start in Randallstown, of all places. Gentrification at it's best, if you ask me, because this time maybe 6 or 7 years ago, the only bangin' going on was the sound of deer going through garbage cans.

Anyways, I digress. God was definitely on my and my people's side, because we all got away...and I was the only one that was 20 bucks short. A simple gas station run turned into one of the most funny/dangerous scenarios I've ever encountered.

"So, what had happened was..."
*cue dramatic flashback fx*

*Jungle stands at the pump, waiting for the transaction to finish. Enter **Dumb Thug.
Dumb Thug: What's good my man, I got this PSP right here, tryna get it up off me. What you got?
Jungle: Man, I'm broke. I ain't got nothing for you.
Dumb Thug: Come on, my nig, I know you got a little something. Gimme $2...
Jungle: I don't have it, man.
Dumb Thug walks off, harrasses another patron and comes back. Upon approaching Jungle, he's seen putting on gloves and grabbing his waist. Ziggy catches a glimpse of his burner from inside the car and calls Scuba Steve, who is at his job less than a half block away.
Dumb Thug
: Come on homie, I know you got something. Gimme $5, then.
Jungle: Look, I told you I'm broke. I don't have it.
Dumb Thug: Aight, nigga. Six, then.
Ziggy notices Dumb Thug getting too close to Jungle, so she grabs her beat-a-fool stick and places it by the driver side door, then steps out of the car in an attempt to diffuse the situation.
: J, you want something from in the store?
Dumb Thug(interrupting Jungle): Hey Miss, I got this PSP right here, and these headphones; I just wanna make a couple dollars right quick.
Ziggy: Look brotha, I don't even need that, but what do you need? I just got out of the car to make sure my brother was alright, you kinda walked up--
Dumb Thug: Well just gimme $10, then. I'm tryna get me and my homeboys home.
Ziggy: Let me run over here, grab some change and I got you. Then we can be on our way.
Ziggy walks over to gas station attendant to get change, but is interrupted before she can get there. Dumb Thug snatches money from her hand, announces he has a gun and starts making demands...

Everything that transpired after that is just wonderful proof that God has my back and the backs of the ones I love. My brother's girlfriend was also with us, she stayed in the car. Dude basically started going off...but wasn't doing what he said he was going to do. What we didn't notice, were the three other guys that were with him, but luckily, Scuba was pulling up at the same time things were getting a little heated. Then when we thought things couldn't get crazier, Scuba gets out of his car--and realizes he knows one of the guys trying to rob us. At that point, the guy he knows is trying to calm his boy down, telling him to just forget about it. Funny, weren't you just egging him on; saying things like "do what you do...come on, man!"...does that ring a bell? My brother and I were still standing outside while Dumb Thug's telling us that we're giving him and his homeboys a ride to wherever they're going, and when Scuba gets there and Dumb Thug realizes he's with me, he gets excited. Two whips AND more money? Shit, yeah!

But he only got 20 bucks.

He snatched the money from my hand, which was totally fine; I didn't want to make any sudden moves, and I wasn't walking too far away from my family. Sure, he flashed his gun, and he was hype...but I think my and my brother's energy wasn't the energy he needed for him to successfully pull this thing off. He probably needed someone who was visibly afraid, making no eye contact and meeting his every demand. My brother and I talked to him. After he took the $20 started demanding a ride and more cash, I looked right at him and said, "Brotha, I don't even know you, and I just spotted you a 20 spot. You really wanna do this out here?"...and he really didn't, you could tell. If someone who is really about what they're about, they'll do what they have intentions of doing, no questions. I think my brother and I threw him off by talking to him like a human being. He probably doesn't have brothers and home who call him "brotha", something else that I'm sure startled him. Basically talked him down until he felt like he really wasn't about a damn thing.
"These people calling me 'brotha', talkin' to me all nice...and she did give me $20...I can't even do this, man..."
I'm pretty sure those were the thoughts running through his mind, but due to his boys being there (probably some sort of initiation) pumping him up, he kept getting hype...for no reason at all. Luckily, when Scuba got there, his presence acted as a diversion. He started asking the guy that he knew what was going on, so Dumb Thug gets upset because, well, you shouldn't be chummy with the people you're about to rob/kill. So, while Dumb Thug is getting too excited, further showing us that he's not going to do a damn thing, we all hopped back into our cars and got the hell out of there.

That's my story. Sorry it was so(!) long, but I felt the need to really go in depth with that one since it was personal. This isn't something that's never happened before, but this experience helped show me that I really have no fear in these types of situations. I mean, if you think about it...what can another human being do to you, that karma won't do seven times worse to them? And if that's the way I'm supposed to go; at the hands of some ignorant, desperate youngin', so be it. That's my philosophy. Gye Nyame. "Except God, fear none". And it was certainly put to the test Wednesday night. Think I did pretty well. I'm still here.

One thing that's hilarious: my brother and I got home that night and laughed about the whole thing. Laughed even harder when he said we were in a live Nu World skit.


Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Blogroll Amnesty what, now?

You Da Best!!! Who? YOUUU!

Had to steal that from Khaled to make a point really quick.

To get straight to the point, my number of followers has been picking up a little in the past couple of days . So, because of that, I'd like to take some time and say thank you to all new readers! There's a nice little bit of you, so forgive me for not including individual shout-outs. I appreciate the comments (read: I LOVE comments, so bring 'em on!), and I try my best to comment on your blogs, as well. I just figured I could post an official "thank you" to you guys. Keep reading, there'll be lots more to come!

So, I'll be honest and say I've been editing this post since the middle of January. Being a procrastinator finally paid off! I was doing my usual Monday evening thing, so true to fashion following chillaxing after work, I decided to randomly peruse some blogs. Bingo! I stumbled upon this blog and learned a little something about Blogroll Amnesty Day. It's the blogosphere's first (and only) major holiday, observed on February 3rd annually. Anyone can participate, the rules are pretty simple. Original rules state that you highlight and provide links for five blogs that you read that have less traffic than you. Since I was already doing a B.A.D.-styled post, honoring you guys; I figured I'd add my own flavor to this blogiday. And I could be making a big deal about this, having only 23 followers, but screw guys are awesome. This is how I thank you for being awesome. You should do the same for whatever blogs you read!

I was going to divide my B.A.D. blogroll into sections, but it's a time for no segregation here. It's in no specific order, which is ultimately best because honestly I couldn't tell you a favorite even if I meditated on it.
If you see your blog title/name/link up here...yes, I think you're dope. :)

He's Abrasively Brilliant.
Notorious Z.A.G. aka Prodigal Princess
Riva's got flow!
Fillmoe's Finest
Nikki (with an H)Factz
He's a smart black man
The Bad Sum Bitch
Take 'em to school, Franky.
She's so uncool
Mista JayCee
Scoob, the official 1
Love's Curious Child
Lyrically Devastating
Digs Daily
Eff you, this blog is brand nu
This Negro's dope.
Hip Hop Is Read
Ill Doctrine
Young Lioness
She writes notes to Hip Hop
Music. Love. Heartaches & Headaches.
Pro's Hazardous Mind
This Is Not A Scene
Pastry Heart

There you have it. My first B.A.D. blogroll. Hope everyone who's reading enjoys my blog and the blogs I've posted here. You should really check them out, they've all got something different to offer. You've got a few hours left in the blogiday, why not make a blogroll of your own?
Thanks again to my readers. "My" readers. Ha. You guys make a woman feel all bubbly inside.
Lurkers? Yes, I know you're there. But you gets no love until you make yourself known!

Edit: After posting this, I found a couple sites who have linked to me in honor of B.A.D. Thanks, guys! Click their links to check them out.
Jon Swift
Buzz Twang