Archive for the ‘Opinion’ Category

“Is This Racist?!”

July 21, 2006

— July 21st, 2006 —

Happy Payday Day, people! Cash those checks and save them. You never know when those reparations may finally come through.

Anyways, shout out to my man, Kev G, he showed this to me about twenty minutes ago. So I ask the question to y’all…

“Could you lend a n*&$@ a pencil?!”

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“Funny How Things Work Out…”

June 8, 2006

— June 8th, 2006 —

Life is a beautiful rollercoaster ride, isn't it? As I say "hi" to 30 (only 23, though…), my damn self — it is interesting to see how my mental has been shaped by events that have just occurred within the past four months. 2006 is a unique year.

I read a "friend's" post on her MySpace page where she was talking about what she wants from a man. I posed the question of what she needed. I do not know if this is where people are at nowadays, but I would like to say that I am trying to find myself first. Having been out of a relationship for some time now, I've noticed that one of the few things that I've gained the ability to fold 'em (*cue Willie Nelson*)

It's quite funny how things work out because the situation that you're in may not be the one that you're in the next day. I've seen a few of my friends go this route. Complaining of a broken heart, then be in the club the next night being the talk of the club.

Are relationships becoming played out? Can anyone be faithful during these sintastical times? Does anyone have the testicular fortitude to admit to their mistakes and be able to trudge on leaving the past, as is?

Don't know. Don't really want to find out. My best laid plains are with this pen and this pad. Shit… funny how things work out, don't it?

“Reflections”

May 27, 2006

— May 26th, 2006 —

Get some ish out of the way — UHURU Magazine is out. Wish the website was up and running for those who would want to subscribe. Getting prepped for the Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival? Check out my interview with Rhymefest at HipHopDX.com. Be on the lookout for Ray Cash, Megan Rochell, Leliene (Smiley from Flavor of Love), the Kickdrums, Mick Boogie and DJ Joey Fingaz.

I think that's all of it. Moving on…

Went to see X-Men 3: The Last Stand at midnight last night and it was fantabolous. This scene made it all the worthwhile (see: here). Next up is The Da Vinci Code and possibly the new Omen remake.

Let's get to the meat and potatoes of this post, shall we…?

Love is definitely a tricky beast to tame. We all wish to understand it, but are left only saying its name. Few people are blessed to be able to balance their unity with their individual selves. Whereas, others are doomed to only want to see their side of any situation or story. What I learned about myself is that I am a hopeless romantic (duh…) and that I ultimately want things to have the fairy tale-esque happy ending. I understand that those things aren't true in the Really Real World, but it can never hurt to dream.

I came up in a generation where it's more likely to see dis bitch, dat hoe, rather than a wifey. With so many younger (18-24) females vying less for a wedding ring and more for a pregnancy patch (of course, after failing the dick sucking contest to be the lead in the latest BET: UnCut video) — is the role of an "independent" woman appropos in a relationship?

Every man wants their woman to be able to take care of themselves, but does that give the woman an excuse in the end? "I make my own money, drive my own car, what do I really need you for?!" — is just an example of what most men think when they see a "successful" Black woman. In my search for what I want, I had that in my stable. But I also didn't have what I wanted in the same vein. I'm sure this would start an argument, but I really believe that my ex wants to have her cake and eat it, too. There are points in our situation that I still don't yet understand (or don't want to).

But this point will be a rambling one. I think that about myself I am still not yet where I want to be. 24 is creeping up, slowly, yet surely. Where other people are writing pieces in magazines and trying to take over the media world, one step at a time, I find myself still stuck on stupid. What is the key? Wherein lies the secret to success? Is it the sensation of ribs touching and hunger pains? Is it the drive to be the best? Is it a fulfillment of a passion? I questioned all of these things as I looked in the mirror and recognized that it was me. I've held myself back from doing things that I want to do. Whether that is reigniting an old flame or creating a new one — in all life scenarios, I've found myself unfocused, wanting, and in the back of the bus.

While looking at this mirror, I also try to think about my past, my present, my future. The people whom I've encountered in my life. The actions and decisions that have determined their interpretation of me. I do care what people think. It drives my heart and my compassion. But does that limit me as to when I should let it go? I have contemplated suicide, I have attempted once when I was younger, I have seen my familiy betray it's unwritten bonds, I have beefed with the people who I call brother, I have lied, cheated, and stolen. I have been at the lowest of lows. I have been in bad academic standing with the university I attend on two separate occasions. I have bad credit, bad breath, and bad body odor (okay, not really… but the credit, yes, sheesh!)

So, what keeps me going? My mentor, Mr. Shelton says that I have an indominable spirit — that no matter how low things go I manage to churn out something equally positive. I call it good luck. Or maybe my dead brother is watching over me. This is the second time I've brought his name out of my mouth. Don't really know what it means… told you I'd be ranting. Do I have enough in my tank to continue onward towards minimalistic accomplishments. The magazine is out, yet no one will pick it up because reading is too white for a black person's taste. My articles are posted on the various sites that I work for, but someone I can manage to mess up a good standing with someone who has a direct connect to greener pastures. You can google my full name, plus Hip-Hop and there I am — which is interesting to me, but I want to be able to have you flip those pages of XXL, The Source, Scratch, URB, and others.

The rent is coming due and the bills are steadily coming in. Prayer is for those who have a belief that something can and will happen. I am not sure if I have strong enough convictions. I am not sure if I have enough strength, period.

“What’s Eating Kevin Clark?!”

March 18, 2006

— March 18th, 2006 —

Congratulations to Tara Pringle and Thomas Jefferson on their engagement. It’s always refreshing to see dreams come true. Another person who’s dream has come true is “Hoopz” of “Flavor of Love” fame. If anyone seen the finale, you should know the morale of the story — “Make sure that your goodies stay in a jar… oh, oh, oh, uh-oh, yeah!” New York “supposedly” gave up her “treasured secret” to the black-chelor. The rumor is that she did it for a bootleg necklace, a pair of $54.11’s, and a bag of Lemonheads. Reality TV isn’t it exciting?!! The show did make it lightweight hard to determine a winner. Especially since “New York” was so convincing of declaring her love for the World’s Best Hypeman (not named Spliff Starr). “Flavor of Love” was just that, mad flavor — it was an interesting look at what women would do for something other than a klondike bar. If they did a spinoff series with Hoopz and Flav, I know they wouldn’t have a probably getting celebrities, as everyone from Denzel to Samuel Jackson would be trying to play one-on-one with Darling Nikki.

I’m still hoping for Hoopz even if SOHH.com beat me with the first step. But I do have some commentary about the show, though.

Allhiphop.com has some really good interviews (at least that I enjoyed reading) with Mimi Valdes of VIBE Magazine and Phat Matt of Elemental Magazine. I’m not really all that familiar with Elemental (I don’t think that we get it in massive dosages here in the Midwest), but I am with VIBE. Valdes (who has a nice looking picture at AHH, by the way), in my opinion, helped the mag out. I remember there was a period where no one was really checking for the mag. Maybe it was because E-Dub’s was running the game for a considerable amount of time? But I think that there are some mags that are really stepping out. URB, The Ave. Magazine, KING, Scratch are just a few that I enjoy on the regular. The exception is The Ave. — I really have to search for that one around here. The one thing that is eating me is how diverse the mag game is, yet how some of the faces that are running it are the same. If you’re not within those New York borders, it’s hard to get your foot in the door to establish a name.

I am working on my first pitch for a magazine. I know who the mag is. A few others do too. The rest will just have to wait it out and see.

Lastly…

A friend of mines asked me what I thought about the XXLMag.com situation and here’s what I have to say… I think that E-Dub was wrong for what he did. That was a ho-ish jack move on his part. I really respected and admired (no brokeback) the grind and career of Elliot Wilson and what he did for Hip-Hop magazines. With the Sauce lacking in credibility, XXL was the magazine to read… and I read it faithfully. Still do. But to invite bloggers to the table, under the auspice that you’re going to let them interview you (about that wack ass CD) and to turn around and jack SOHH.com was foul. No disrespect to anyone who got a job out of that, because I understand the grind. I really do. I give a lot of respect to cats like Bol (and others) who have put foot to pedal and gassed the game with his drive. But to show how much of a sucker I am — XXLMag.com is sho’nuff bookmarked as a favorite site. So, you either hate it or love it. Not much room for like.

I’m out. UHURU Magazine almost done (God willing), want to clean up the humble abode before the folks stop through, and will be on the grind. There’ll be a lot of post this week to supplement the fact that I may or may not be able to do it when I go to Biloxi, Mississippi for Spring Break. Adios.

“Everybody Wants What Everybody Wants”

March 13, 2006

— March 14th, 2005 —

No one has sent me any e-mails talking about how successful their “Steak and BJ” holiday is going. So, us men will not get our just due, I guess… Everyone has their wants. In this case, the woman’s wants outweigh the man’s. Think about it? The women know that they have the power hands down across the board and they can use that to enforce their will. The woman can be anal about it (over-domineering) or subtle (playful flirt) about making the pendulum of any situation go their way. As men, we try to use our sexual dominance (which is very little when you think about it) as a means of signifying strength. Another thing that I know I, as a man, want is the feeling of security. Which is basically universal on all accounts. But I really want to know that the things in life that I am working to achieve, associated with, and/or profiting from — will be there for the long haul. Now I know certain things are always transitional — jobs, relationships, even friends — but in the end, I want the same things to be there for me in the end. Is that wrong? Is it selfish of me to believe that that is possible?

I have made a lot of connections through this writing, a fact that wouldn’t have been possible without a firestarter in my corner like G-Money the Diva. I would love for these connections to continue to serve me as friends and allies in this ongoing battle of artistic freedom. It’s been a pleasure to know people like Panama, Bomani Jones, William Ketchum III, jimi izreal, Harold M. Clemens, and plenty of others who I am either a fan of or a friend of or worked for. Professionally, I have been doing this for only a year, but the seeds planted and cultivated continue to sprout full blossomed treats. From meeting with Kim from Room Serivce to eating some grub with Pam Smith (formerly of SOHH.com) in Harlem — I am blessed to be able to say that I am living out my dream. A dream that if not started now, may not have gotten started. Now, I have been writing since I was two-years-old. I understand that this is my gift here on Earth. Finally realizing that this is something that I want is really an eye-opening experience, yet a somber road to traverse. I mean — I am 23, jimi talked about his experiences as an intern with Vibe magazine and this part kind of worried me.

“At 25, I was also the oldest intern in the business department. There was an older one 38— I think—in the art department. “

Again, mind you — 23, and I have just now stepped into the realm of being a writer. Still with no critical praise or real in-depth knowledge of the game yet, I’ve been like a fish taking to water in this game. Does age matter in a game where image isn’t the key? My friend, Mr. Ketchum III, is 20, maybe 21 — his credits are lightweight deep with pieces in certain magazines and flooding the internet with hot (no brokeback) features. Before I even knew duke, I was envy of the skill. Coming from Kent, attending Kent State — our school is known for journalism, but not necessarily the type that I have been doing for a while now. Not much difference, you say?! But I think different.

College… is definitely a trip. I walked around the campus the other day and saw all the returning students come back from being at home. Just wondering to myself if they thought an inkling of what I thought.

“I’m in college. I want something in life.”

Sounds cliché, I know — but it’s an interesting specimen to check out. People pay tons of money just so they can attain a piece of paper that will allow them to earn the money to be able to pay back to the University. Slick hustle if you ask me. It just seems like everybody wants what everybody wants in life. Whether it’s happiness, sex, love, money, or an interview with Kanyé West — it’s all about that yearning for something.

“What’s All The Hype About?!!?”

January 31, 2006

What’s going on with Hype Williams?  Has he lost his mind?!!?  The guy responsible for creating such visual treats like Busta Rhymes “Woo-Hah” [Got You All In Check] is now making Belly-esque ass-features with his new video trend.

He’s typically sold the same premise of a video to those few schmucks [Smitty, Beyoncé, and a gaggle of others].

Next on that list aptly called, “The Unfortunates” [because unfortunately, they should’ve had another director come up with the treatment for their video] — is the newest R&B sensation — Ne-Yo.

You can check out the “HYPE” down below…

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In other news, owners of the trendy Blackberry may soon find themselves disappointed.  Why?  Because someone didn’t hit the patent office too quick.  I guess one of the companies [RIM] is trying the gangsta stranglehold move by saying, “We ain’t fuckin’ wit chall, we in Canada – we’re untouchable, ay!”  Whatever!?!  Just as long as they don’t shut off my e-mail service.  I JUST got this phone.  I’m using it for the best of my abilities. 

There will probably not be an update tomorrow, unless there is something earth shattering.  Have a few business pieces to get ready for.

“…The Brotha Made “Reasonable Doubt”…”

January 25, 2006

— January 25th, 2006 —

Reasonable Doubt

“Who’s the best emcees? Biggie, Jay-Z, and Nas?” The age-old question posed by many a Hip-Hop fan is “who’s the best”…? In a culture where we have G.O.A.T.’s, King’s, and a God MC — one of the primary focuses in the game is being the best. My friend, Kareem, is a Jay-Z elitist. He feels that he’s the best MC and that anything anyone [anyone being Cam’Ron] has to say about it being otherwise is malarky. That’s right, I said malarky. His “reasoning” behind his feelings? “…the brotha made ‘Reasonable Doubt’“.

My feelings don’t matter in this arguement — I’m being unbiased. But B-Sims, on the other hand, feels that Cam was just a voice for the voiceless. I, for one, like the stance [and smarts] that Jay seems to have about the situation.

Jay said to MTV News:

“My thing is, it’s such an obvious ploy for attention and to get people to talk about it and for [Cam to] sell albums,” Jay-Z told MTV News “I’m torn…I feel like I would be stupid to even pay that any attention, because it’s such a ploy. N**gas is holding press conferences behind [the dis record]…That’s not even a good dis record. That s**t is trash. I’m torn. We’ll see what happens. Maybe on my time we’ll deal with it, but I’m not really pressed. I’m inspired by good artistic s**t. Cam’s s**t is not artistic. There’s nothing good about it. Everything about it is an obvious ploy to get attention. Nobody wants to get used.”

Basically, Killa Season it’s definitely not… It’s gotta suck that you’re not worth the attention of someone who is the center of attention. I wonder if Dame is making his trademark smirk and saying, “Rats… foiled again…” If what was said was true and Dame was just using Cam’Ron to get at Hov — wouldn’t that be a “homo” thing to do?

Males shouldn’t be jealous… that’s a female trait”

– Jay-Z

In any regards, I think that this is something that the public is going to slowly forget about as we get deeper into 2006. Then… when we least expect it, Jay-Z will have footage of Cameron Giles being birthed into the world wearing a pink hat and fu-fu with the frills on the end.

Shouts out to Bol and Danyel for hitting up the page. Please continue to stop through and give advice when/if necessarily. Appreciate it.