Well-known member
BB4TF---whoooo in the he!! is this poster with the smart commentary on some of every topic?

Truthfully---I've deliberated with this whole blog thing 4 a minute. I finally came to the conclusion that an alternative voice should be heard on this board. But what does "alternative" entail exactly?

Well---that's a DAYUM GREAT question. And as we travel along this blog journey---I guess we'll all find out what that means, won't we? :)

To break the ice---a few tidbits about myself:
I am first, a human who prays for/works toward making a positive impact upon the world. It is one of my many God-given purposes of which I am very in-tuned to and I won't sway off my path.

I am an American who is open to ACTIVELY working toward socio-political-economic change.

I am effin' funny and fun-loving as all get out throughout all of the processes of life. :cool:

I am a lover of PEOPLE. ALL PEOPLE.
I am a parent, a teacher, a preacher, a butcher, baker and a candlestick maker---literally.
I am a writer and a lyrical MC poet and I know it. :cool:
I am a lover of all types of music---my obvious faves--old school R&B, rock, reggae and of course---Hip Hop.

Above all---I am a child of God, who recognizes that we all have interconnected purposes in life. I decided to answer the call for my life--hopefully, as I post on this personal blog---others will be motivated to do the same.

In the meantime---Let's BE the Peace we may be searching for. :cool:
WOW...what a difference a couple of hours make in Yappiworld! :shrug:

LD2the3D :) and I had a debate on several threads last night---no cursing, no calling names or anything. I checked the threads this morning and my comments are edited and his aren't, for the most part. What gives? If something is unacceptable, then fine---but please be fair in the editing process.

On a positive note---we're on Spring Break this week! WOOOOOOOOOO!!!! I finally get to catch up on much needed rest, house cleaning and hanging out with the family. Life is good.:)
As I peruse the boards---I am amazed by the number of people who attempt to post statements on threads of which they KNOW NOTHING ABOUT. WTH?

I was always taught if there is a topic on the table, which you have absolutely NO CLUE about, sit back and listen. You may learn a thing or three if your mind and spirit are open to do as such. It is the ART of conversation/debate. NO ONE is ever too much of ANYTHING that they simply can't LEARN from someone else who doesn't look, think, believe, act, behave, worship (or not), speak, walk, smell, or LIVE like THEMSELVES. And how about---NO ONE IS OMNISCIENT, except our CREATOR? Hmmmmm.....

Apparently, many don't get that lesson or perhaps, they've heard it and chosen to ignore it altogether. Nevertheless, in this nation, there has to be a time and place where we all come together as HUMANS, acknowledging and respecting ALL cultural differences while being proud and championing the unity we form, as Americans---even with our collective and extensive shortcomings. Surely---we've evolved enough as a people in 2008-on, we can share our UGLY shizit and continue the work to build a consensus of AMERICA---the home of the free and the brave---no matter what that looks like to you.

**NEWSFLASH: our kids are doing it (to the 40+ age-group) under our noses and some of us are too dayum entrenched in our F*ED belief systems to notice it.

Just some thoughts. Digest as ya'll will. :cool:
In the meantime---BE the peace you want in your life. :cool:

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Hip Hop Lovers EMERGE!

I've been participating in a great ongoing discussion regarding who may or may not be on the "Greatest Hip Hop MC of All-Time" thread.

I can't EVEN begin to tell anyone how this does the heart so much good, :)cool:) seeing posters come out of the woodwork to express their ongoing appreciation for a musical genre which has taken much flak over the years as a result of misperceptions and God-only-knows-what-else.

Intrinsically, Hip Hop is NOT a violent form of music. It's roots are born of an era where socially poetic forms of expression against the status-quo melded to music---as early as 50's Beat Poetry to late 60's "Lit' in Rebellion," as my father so affectionately puts it. :cool:

Nevertheless---it is an EXPRESSION, much like the early roots of Rock 'n' Roll, which many of us STILL listen to. And if we're all being HONEST about much of the history of AMERICAN MUSICAL EXPRESSIONS---at some point in their inceptions, weren't they considered to be "subversive" in some way or fashion? (Think ELVIS: wouldn't be shown on television from the WAIST DOWN on many TV shows esp. while he was performing what was known as "race music." )

Great music is GREAT MUSIC, REGARDLESS OF GENRE. I may not LIKE someone's particular choice because it just simply doesn't appeal to me. Still---I don't disregard what others may feel because overall...GREAT music speaks to our SPIRITS, on some level.

And at the end of the day...isn't that a GOOD THING?

Just some thoughts. :cool:

BE the Peace AND LOVE you want in your lives.
'Till next time....

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Today WAS a GOOD DAY.....

I had quite the interesting day....

First off---I attended a memorial service dinner for a woman, whom I've only got to really know in the past two years. Nevertheless, she is/was one of my best friend's sister and I went to support my friend.

That morning---I grappled with attending the ACTUAL service because I have an aversion, near-phobia of funerals.

My aunt, who was one of the STRONGEST people I've ever been blessed to know/see operate, passed away Thanksgiving Day 2006. :dang: My sisters and I had to plan the details of her funeral since my uncle was quite devastated about his loss---OUR loss. Since this experience, I haven't attended funerals.

We watched my aunt succumb to liver cancer at age 57---the same disease and age as my friend's sister. They both passed away at the same hospice and both embodied much of the same level of STRENGTH, INTELLIGENCE and CHARACTER friends, family and co-workers admired and loved them for. Both never met a stranger who, in their time of need, they would not reach out to help in any way possible. And neither of them expected nor looked for anything in return.

"You don't give for accolades, money or any dayum thing else," my aunt always said. "You GIVE 'cause SPIRITUALLY--it's the RIGHT thing to DO."

She wasn't a big "church-goer," per se, but her spiritual gifts and contributions were bigger/more than any minister, pastor, deacon, father I've ever seen. Many of her former employees and legions of kids and families whom she had assisted/counseled in some form or fashion, came to pay their respects to my aunt.

And like my aunt---legions of former students, co-workers, friends and random strangers came today to share their wonderful memories and immense gratitude for my friend's sister. As I listened to the myriad of conversations praising the person she was/is---I couldn't help but to think about my level of commitment to TRUE service of the community-at-large. I am without a doubt---a committed teacher and mentor to many outside of my family---but can I do more? Yeah.....:cool:

After the dinner----I hung out with my friend's family at her house and wouldn't you know it----the main topic of our lively conversation was all about SERVICE to community...particularily, the kids.

Without droning on too much--the gist of the group discussion was about how we can reach out MORE to those children in the African American community who are falling through the cracks for a myriad of reasons. We debated, laughed and shared stories about the host of ways my friend's sister (and my aunt) contributed to the uplifting of our kids and the community as a whole. I felt we all walked away with a renewed sense of what it really means to "be of service."

Leaving my friend's house--I went to see another friend/co-worker perform at one of our local jazz clubs.
(***SHAMELESS PLUG*** :cool: TO THOSE WHO DON'T LIVE IN CINCINNATI: If you are a true JAZZ LOVER and get the opportunity---go to THE BLUE WISP LOUNGE Downtown!!! You will LOVE IT--GUARANTEED!!! :cool: )

Between sets---he, another gentleman and I had a GREAT conversation about---guess what?---SERVICE to the KIDS of the community. My friend and I shared "war stories" :angel: :laugh: about the challenges around working in an urban school district BUT expressed the deep internal satisfaction knowing that what we're doing IS making a difference even if some times, we can't/don't see the IMMEDIATE results.

At that point---it became clear to me that deep internal satisfaction is what kept my aunt and friend's sister going, even through their illness. The ultimate testimony to their service here on Earth was evidenced by the many folks who came to pay their respects and share stories of how they both made a tremendous difference in their lives.

And if I can be/do a TENTH of the legacy THEY left, perhaps when my time comes, God will say to me, "Well done, my child, well done," as well.

"Everyone has the power of greatness, not for fame but greatness, because GREATNESS is determined by SERVICE."---Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

BE the peace and love you want in your lives.
'Til next time....

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Nothing especially poignant to post---given the last post--I did get a L'IL deep with the feelings and all....:)

Nevertheless----good stuff is going on in my life. One of my students was recently tapped as a GATES SCHOLAR, which, coming from a Cincinnati Public School in the post-reconstruction years---is a BIG DAMN DEAL. :) I'm proud to say that I wrote his recommendation essays and between my mere contribution, his amazing hard work, winning attitude, incredible intelligence, and sheer determination to succeed---he was one of the 1,000 out of 40,000 :)eek: ) applicants awarded this VERY prestigious scholarship! The Gates Foundation will pay for his COMPLETE post-secondary educational career from undergrad to Ph.D. :) He told me from this point on--I'm invited to all of his graduations, wedding, baby showers, etc. And guess what? I'm going to them all. :cool:

I'm just grateful to have been used as a vessel to help make this young man's future a guaranteed success. How can one really ask for more? :blush:

In the meantime---BE the love and peace you want in your life.

'Til next time....
I must say that I'm not amazed/shocked by too much of anything these days---call it cynical or just being inundated by crazy stories DAILY---HOWEVER, this evening around MIDNIGHT--I saw one of my former students WALKING along a street one of my best friends lives on and SHE was going to the BUS STOP. :eek:

Now--I need to add that this young lady is a 10th grader who is also now PREGNANT. In addition to her walking ALONE--she was waiting for a family member to come pick her up and had never showed. :wallbang: Needless to say---I took the young lady home because I couldn't bear the thought of this young GIRL being out at this hour waiting on a BUS.

As we were driving---I asked her where her parents were---she replied, rather sadly, "I don't know." Okay...I'm thinking---I'll probe a li'l deeper.
"Why not?" I asked. "Do they know you're out here like this?"

"No," she responded, again...more sadly than before.
By this time---I'm DONE. I was pretty incensed because for the LIFE of me--I just don't effin' GET how so-called parents can be so selfish and caught up that they throw their children to the wolves. I didn't respond and just drove. A couple of moments of uncomfortable silence later, she then tells me how she and her "church-going mother" had major issues and they became WORSE when her "church-going mother" found out the young lady was pregnant. Just as she's wrapping up her story, we pulled in front of her apartment building.

"Well---who do you LIVE with?" I asked. "Was there NO ONE HOME who could've picked you up?"
Her response: "I'm living with my boyfriend and he doesn't have a car. Plus--he's at work right now."


I felt like she wanted to say MORE, but for whatever reason, COULDN'T, so I left that whole commentary alone. I hugged her, gave her my cell # and told her to call me if she needed any help.

Too many adults clearly have failed her. I've made it up in my mind that I won't be one of them. This child needs HELP--GUIDANCE---SOMETHING. I heard it in her voice and seen the pain in her eyes as she spoke of her issues with her "church going mother." If I can offer a sliver of assistance OR MORE--I'm prepared to do as such.

In the meantime---BE the peace and love you want in your lives.
'Til the next time...

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WOW....the end of another school year is here met with relief, a bit of melancholy and JOY.

In a nutshell---because I'm still digesting this all and that will come in a subsequent blog :) --relief, because I plain and simply, need the BREAK to RE-GROUP.

A "bit of melancholy" because this graduating class is the FIRST class I've seen through from Freshman to Senior years. I've watched the transitions, tragedies and triumphs made inside and outside the classroom by many students. I've taught/tutored, celebrated/cried with and for praised and PRAYED FOR ALL OF THEM. Quite simply--I've watched and helped them to GROW and I am INCREDIBLY confident and EXCITED for what's to come for many of them.

My joy is for the same reasons as the "bit o' melancholy." :) However, there's MORE JOY than melancholy. Many of my students have FULL ACADEMIC RIDES to universities of THEIR choice.....and that's cause for much celebration. One student in particular is a GATES SCHOLAR, which means he has a 10-year scholarship with ALL EXPENSES PAID to ANY UNIVERSITY IN THE WORLD from UNDERGRAD to PH.,D. HE!! YEAH!!!!. :party:

That's SPECIAL CAUSE for celebration because NOT TOO MANY EDUCATORS can EVER say they assisted in THAT PROCESS from teaching the student to writing the recommendation/nominating essays which helped to secure the scholarship!!!! :) Again---I'm just feeling blessed to be a contributing VEHICLE his and other students' successes. :crush:

Again---like my incredible aunt and my buddy Val.....God rest THEIR souls.....I'm simply following the tradition of "GIVING BACK" that has been laid down before me. I look forward to doing more, but for NOW...I still gotta RE-GROUP and looking forward to doing that this summer. :)

In the meantime---BE the peace, LOVE and SUMMER FUN you want to have in your lives. :)

'Til next time...

Pieces of Poetry....

...are words from the soul. I LOVE poetry and oftentimes, I lose sight of what my CREATIVE soul may be saying as a result of my day-to-day life, which doesn't always afford me the opportunity to connect to my creative spirit. that I have a l'il bit more TIME--I'm dedicating more TIME to being an "alternative" voice on the Yappi board, which goes back to my initial premise in my original blog posting. :)

Going forth---as part of my original premise, my blog postings will consist of personal observations and musings (as usual) and poetry, whether it be composed by myself, other recognized poets/songwriters/essayists or even other Yappi posters who fancy themselves poets.....just don't send me any WHACK pieces, PLEASE. :)

So--- to kick things off--- a Maya Angelou piece called:


You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I'll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don't you take it awful hard
'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines
Diggin' in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I'll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I've got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history's shame
I rise
Up from a past that's rooted in pain
I rise
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.

Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise

I rise
I rise.

'Til next time...BE the Peace and LOVE you want in your lives. And feel free to send me poems. :)

I ran across this poem today....WOW....:eek:

Cry Freedom

Cry freedom
With a quiet voice
Cry freedom
And rejoice.

Cry freedom
See the purest light
Cry freedom
With fresh sight.

Cry freedom
With a gentle will
Cry freedom
And be still.

Cry freedom
Till your heart does ache
Cry freedom
And awake.

Cry freedom
With a quiet voice
Cry freedom
And rejoice.

David Keig (1951)

Written in 1951 and it still rings true. :)

BE the peace, love and FREEDOM you want in your lives.
'Til next time....

Teachers make a G.D. DIFFERENCE!

A friend and I were watching a few old episodes of HBO's Def Jam Poetry this about an AMAZING show! For those who may not be familiar with the show---it was a weekly program hosted by Mos Def (one of my all-time Hip Hop MC's. :) ) and included spoken word artists, celebs, professors, writers, and a variety of musical artists across musical genres delivering personally written poetic pieces or works written by other poets. Needless to say, like so many other great programs over the years, the show was cancelled after a three-year run.

I came across this particular performance by Taylor Mali, extolling the value of teachers and of course, had to share it. :cool:

BE peace.
Daaaayum...this Is Where We Are?

A friend of mine just shared this article with me today:

I decided to post this on my blog vs. the Debate forum because THIS topic about race relations in the U.S. would probably spiral out of control, QUICKLY and out of respect to the mods---I'm just not trying to make your jobs that much tougher. :)

However---the article DOES need to be posted--and READ.

40 years after the Civil Rights movement, RFK's and MLK's assassinations---WHY for the LOVE OF GOD are we STILL not EVOLVED ENOUGH where a BLACK MAN can seek the highest office in the land without threats---REAL LIVE THREATS against his LIFE? :wallbang:

If one agrees or disagrees with him on personal political principles, I can respect that--- However, I have issues wrapping my head around the idea of HOW our society STILL has a significant number of people who believe Obama does NOT have the RIGHT TO LIVE and pursue HIS DREAMS of ACTUALLY BEING POTUS because of THE DAMN COLOR OF HIS SKIN???

I don't get it and perhaps I never will. And each day that I hear/read/encounter more racial ignorance---I'm sooo cool with not "getting it" because, to me, it means I would have to sacrifice some part of my BRAIN and SPIRIT to reach those depths. Clearly--I'm not willing to do that.

In the meantime---whether you're an Obama or McCain supporter--let's all be sensible enough to ADVOCATE and PRAY that the will of these extremists do NOT infiltrate our governing processes.

Be the peace and love you want in your lives.
'Til next time....


..OR DIE. :cool:

Not to quote a P-Diddy/M-TV slogan, but in reality, too many of our collective ancestors have died for our contemporary RIGHT and for some, PRIVILEGE, to VOTE. Regardless of party affiliation or non-affiliation, as a citizen in the greatest democracy in the world...come this Tuesday....VOTE.... or DIE. :angel: :)

In the meantime---be the peace, love and CHANGE you want in your lives. :)

'Til the next time....


....and plan on staying, God permitting.

I see nothing much has changed on good ol' Yappi. Nevertheless, I plan to make more postings, offer my l'il two cents and pray that maybe, just maybe, what I have to say will make others think a bit differently. We can all use an alternative voice, from time-to-time. :cool:

In the meantime, BE the peace and love you want to have in your lives.