Monday, October 5, 2015

Welcome to South Carolina! Lets get Wet!

Ramblings Post #298
You don't think about some things just because they've always been there, and so you expect that they always will be. But then things happen, like a freak rainstorm that just keeps it coming and you're suddenly an amateur meteorologist. Or if you live on the West Coast, brush fire expert. It just happens.  

I'm from South Carolina, born and raised. It is my home state from the empty back-roads that just seem to the lead to other empty back-roads all the way to the sleepy metropolitan-ish kinda parts of the state that stay open until 'pertinear 10:30! (excepting Waffle Houses and Juke joints). And all of it is about to become beachfront property. 

I kid. 

I called the folks to check on them Sunday, and they are fine. I just recently realized that my parents live near the top of a long sloping hill, partially because the actual road they live on isn't very long and partially because you just don't think about it, it's just where the house has always been. A very, very deep and very wide lake would have be created for them to be in any danger. My grandfather lives a few miles from an actual lake, but I was told that he was good, and my aunts closer to the coast were good too. At least I think they're good, because according to my Mom their only concern seemed to be missing Sunday service. 

It is moments like this where we're isolated from our neighbors, well state neighbors, because in Atlanta people were tailgating for the Falcons game.  Not to say that they're insensitive, but isn't happening halfway around the world, this is two hours down I-20. This is a day trip. Note that I make these comments while I sprawled on my couch upset that that the NFL's Injury Fairy has apparently bought a house in Dallas. At least I thought about it though. One of my co-workers said she honestly had no idea of what was going on just one state over.  

But with the news that the family is safe,  and relatively dry, my thoughts turn to things political. It's the politican season, what can you do? Anyway, moments like this make you wonder, considering the number of roads washed out and bridges closed over safety concerns if...and it's a big IF I know, if something like this will get the Terrorist treatment and spur the a great upswing in government infrastructure projects. The kind of thing that has a tendency to build a hard days work for fair days pay kind of pride in America while proving to a lot of people who failed civics that the government CAN create jobs. Plus a job building a bridge in SC is hard to outsource. I am well aware that a return to the massive job creation of the building of a interstate highway is probably out of the question, but this is an opportunity to pump a little juice into the local economies. 

A Republican state too? This has all the hallmarks of something that will set you apart from the field. Let's see who will jump on this one, or am I being too optimistic?  

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Dean Sybil C Mobley, on to teach the next lesson.

Sybil C. Mobley. My Dean.

My Dean died

I say my Dean, because she was the Dean of my undergraduate program, and someone who I think should be a in a history book, because she sat on corporate boards in the 70's and 80's when being a woman meant you usually didn't get a seat, so that she figured out how to make it work as a black woman is nothing short of astounding. And then she built a business school at an HBCU for, as she called us upon entry, the "Fortunate 400".

It was a business school where you wore suits three days a week, practiced speech and how to think on your feet, learned research and how to connect the dots, then ran mock businesses with real people and consequences so you could see how real businesses worked. It came with a rapid fire education, one that had us on topics some places don't even cover, much less expect them to be tackled by freshmen, and internships at some of the best companies in the world. It was a place where the best were supposed to graduate from and go onto a big thing.

I'm quite frankly surprised she let me graduate. Don't get me wrong, I did ascend to the very top of the "Corporate IQ program," but I was a campus personality and perhaps not the most diligent of students. For a long time, although I was very capable of doing those things that were asked of me (and maybe a bit more), I thought I didn't fit the mold, that I wasn't the very essence of what they were trying to achieve. Now, decades removed, I wish I can say the idea has changed. But not really.

She had a very big dream that I was but a small part of. But I still hope to serve her memory well.  

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Ah, Football Season

Ramblings Post #297
There are many unofficial holidays in America. Days when things just don't happen. The day after Thanksgiving is one. The Friday before Memorial Day and Labor Day. These are days when we're either in recovery from what we did, or preparing to go do something we'll need to recover from. But most of our unofficial holidays involve sport. Opening Day of Baseball Season. The day the new Madden comes out. The Monday after the Superbowl. It is a great time to be alive. 

There is nothing quite like football season. When I was younger, the smell of the pads, the feel of the grass when you stretched, that first crunching hit of the day. It seemed like old times. I didn't play for long, had knee surgery my senior year of high school (that along with some local shenanigans) so I moved on. But it was a good time to be alive and playing football.

As they say, the game has changed. I used to dream of playing, now I dream of owning a team.

But all that aside, Tom Brady and Bill Belichick should be kicked out of football and have no hope of reaching the Hall of Fame. For the judge who handled the case to believe that because the rules and penalties for cheating weren't clearly spelled out there should be no punishment (that's really what the ruling says, not that Brady is innocent) is a farce. I'm with the consensus that the judge probably has Brady on his fantasy team. My understanding is that this punishment is really like an Oscar for what is universally perceived as a merely good performance, i.e, you're not really getting this because you were the best, you're getting this because of something you did in the past. Because if you read the Spygate overview, and i did, I'm quite frankly surprised that two or three folks didn't have to involuntarily retire. Forty games is a lot of games. 

And to top off this inauspicious start to the season, the first game is the Steelers vs the Patriots. I'm not sure who is worse, the Steeler fans or the Pats fans. But since the Pats fans seem to be okay with blatant cheating, I'm hoping the Steelers pull it out. Wait is wrong to root for a tie?

Barkeep. It's beer tonight. But that low cal stuff, okay? Beer guts aren't cute.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Marriage isn't what they think it is

This is a political post. 

Kim Davis is not being persecuted for her beliefs. She's being persecuted because she doesn't understand what she actually does.

First, you have to realize that their are two kinds of marriage in America. There is religious marriage, and then there is legal marriage. We all know religious marriage - it involves months of planning, ugly bridesmaid dresses, flowers, arguments over colors and seating arrangements, culminating with a white clad woman walking slowly down an aisle because it's "HER" day. And then there is legal marriage. That's the one with all the tax benefits and legal rights. And I think it's because the government has co-opted that term, marriage, that people get all flustered.

It has been my experience that words get people all mad. If you changed the term, but kept all the same circumstances I don't' think we'd have any argument here. Everybody gets civil unions from the government, hooray! But then someone would claim they'd "won" which is whole other argument, so forget it. Where was I? Co-opted, right.

The government has co-opted the term Marriage for it's own purposes. But under the law, just like two heterosexual people who agree to a certain social condition receive beneficial government treatment it makes sense that it is discriminatory to tell two people who are homosexual that they cannot receive beneficial government treatment if they are willing to assume the same social condition. To Huckabee's credit, the court didn't write new law. But then if you look at it, they didn't have to. They only applied what we already have. 

Now Ms. Davis seems to believe that granting a marriage license means the bearer can walk into any church and demand a ceremony. Well, a lot of her supporters do as well, why I don't know, but this isn't the case. (By the way, most people get both a religious AND a legal marriage, which may contribute to the confusion, but I digress.) Her argument that she cannot in good conscience grant the license because it offends her belief is misguided, unless her belief is that two homosexual people should not receive treatment from the government equal to that of two heterosexual people in a similar condition. Her act does not grant a marriage in the eyes of God, that position belongs to the church. Her act grants a marriage in the eyes of the government, a wholly less than spiritual organization. There should be no issue here, but maybe she's confused God and the government, or somehow fused the two together in her mind, which is a whole other discussion.

And by the way, the analogy to the Muslim cashier at Target not handling pork, which my very Christian friend on Facebook (and Kim Davis supporter) bandied about as evidence that this is Christian persecution, is an extremely weak one. First, as much as hate to admit this public....access to bacon is not really a Right. And at Target, you can always go to another cashier. But in her county Ms. Davis was the only place to get a marriage license, something that is a Right. And it the issue of pork handling became a real issue for a capitalist venture like Target, those affected workers could always be re-assigned to other positions (provided of course there was no loss of pay.)

Still, the civil unions thing? Anybody? Anybody? Pfft, whatever, so, who wants to discuss climate change?

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The House I Want (Part Four)

Planning for the Future Post #4

Don't just rest...relax.
The bedroom is not the heart of the house, but it's the place you rest when you're sick, lounge when you're lazy, entertain when you're serious and rest your head at night. The one I have now has a brown polo paint job (I never did the moldings in the darker brown like I was supposed to) and I've got a leather bed. Not bad work if you can get it. It's a queen not a king, because I believe you shouldn't be able to retreat across the bed from your partner, that the intimacy bred by the proximity is something to treasure. But I digress.

For my bedroom, I want THAT bedroom. With the dark brown walls, but the slightly darker trim. Some art on the walls. Photos that I took. Dark wooden shades and the walk-in closet the size of a complete other room (but that's a whole other post). I want it both spacious and cozy, which I know is quite a trick, with enough room for a couch and a mini-kitchenette, a small space to heat up something in case I don't want to walk down to the kitchen. Maybe a balcony overlooking the fabulous deck I want? Oh the possibilities.

I guess mostly though I want a space where I can close the door and get a good rest.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Straight Outta....well, maybe next time.

Ramblings Post #295
I've had a lot of free time on my hands lately. Too much really. Because when I have too much free time I try to do too many things. I'm still working on my book. (Yes, same book, surprise!) But I'm also starting to think up a new series of characters for a new series of books that would act as a prequel to the book I stopped writing to write this book....which I haven't forgotten, but also working on some songs since I got this app, and also reading a whole lot, and game strategy, I said, too much. 

Straight of Compton
I'm probably not going to see Straight Out of Compton. At least not out. Not out of protest, not because people who didn't make it are mad it didn't include the parts they wanted (see Dee Barnes), not because it somehow "glorifies misogyny", but because the last movie I remember seeing in at the movies was Skyfall, and the next one will probably be Spectre. That AND,  since I was there the first time, actually purchased the albums and listened to the gossip, seeing it all chromed out and cleaned up really has no thrill for me. It's like watching Will Smith play Ali when I could actually watch the documentary and see Ali be himself.

No thrill.

Further, I'm not happy with how the premiere was framed by the media. The implication that there would be violence because of the film was just plain crazy. The audience for this film, NWA fans, are at this point are in their forties and fifties, with careers, mortgages and kids in college. They're not riding up on twenty eights with the choppa in trunk and bum rushing the Regal. They've bought their tickets online at the place with surround sound and stadium seating that serves dinner and dessert, because this is their one night out a week and they need to get home before they piss off the babysitter.  This is folks reliving an admiration of their anti-heros from a hazily remembered youth that wasn't even real the first time around. Think college homecoming in the alumni section more than club full of gangbangers. And yet the media is stunned their was no violence.

I understand the film did well, and hopefully it will open the doors for more films telling the black stories that have black people in them. Hollywood finds every excuse to not tell the black tale unless it's filtered through some other's lens, but here the outlaws were in charge. Well corporate outlaws living off a twenty five year old legend, but outlaws just the same. They did it their way. So maybe a another door opens somewhere. Maybe, just maybe. But I'll be waiting for HBO.

Barkeep, I need me a little gin with some juice. Yeah, I know it's a throw back. But make Tanqueray and the juice a mix of Mango and Pineapple. Fresh juice, now. We're not savages here.