Thursday, October 30, 2014

The Black Panther....finally.

Ramblings Post #274
As a black nerd, yes they exist, I have learned a lot about how people view other people through fiction. Although derided as fantasy, the truth is when you put your imagination on display in a comic book or novel, you reveal a lot about yourself...and the society that you're holding a mirror up to. 

After years of speculation, er, hoping by black nerds everywhere, Marvel finally went ahead and made it official: The Black Panther is getting his own movie. It's a few years away, the end of 2017 - but I can go ahead and put it on my calender now. I also like how they're going to work him into the next Captain America movie...and provided I see the last one before then (come on, HBO!) and evaluate it properly I might have to increase my movie collection. But they'll need to show me something before I can add it alongside my James Bond, Pirates of the Caribbean or Cosby/Potiter collections.

The only other troubling part I had was the favorite for the role - Idris Elba - already exists in another role in the Marvel Movie Universe. Seriously, we fans have considered everyone for the role, including Will Smith, Morris Chestnut, Donald Glover and even Vin Diesel for some reason. And although I would have gone with Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 years a slave), Dijmon Hounsou or maybe even Colin Salmon (though he might be a bit old now), the selection of Chadwick Boseman isn't horrible. I would have preferred an English accent, but Boseman seems to be a flexible enough performer, but I think he'll need to put on some muscle and add some gravitas to play T'Challa. Here's to hoping they write the character as a multidimensional person with his own concerns and not just a caricature or an African version of Tony Stark. 

T'Challa:   And who do you think you are to give me ultimatums?
Tony Stark:   Genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist.
T'Challa:   *smirks* Genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist, legendary warrior and king of the most powerful and technologically advanced nation on earth.
Tony Stark:   . . .

It's become clearly evident that the Marvel Movie Universe is going to be drastically different than the Marvel Comic Universe, but then that's okay. Over at DC you have to remind yourself which Earth you on, so this is no biggie. Hopefully they'll also use Wakanda as the backdrop, and show it not as mud huts but just as it is in the comics.

Now, Marvel, when is Luke Cage getting his movie? Oh, he's an Avenger now, and Avengers get movies. And yes, ya'll done started something.

Barkeep. Champagne all around. The good stuff too, not that soda water.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

And the Winner, by unanmious decision..

Let's just say here at the end, I'll appreciate what I've achieved because of the struggle it took to get here.

Ali. Victorious.
Yesterday at noon, my RP called and told me to check my damn score. He was a lot more interested in it than I was, me being more than content to wait until the list emerged at 4:30pm. Okay honestly I lacked confidence, after all I've been here before. But he was insistent, so I logged into the GA Bar Admissions website mentally prepared for bad news and already figuring out my finances to take the test yet again next summer.


Passed. I think he hollered louder than I did. It's good to have folks who really care about you, and I had to fight to get off the phone so I could call my folks. Then I hit up Sporty, and then Spanky and the rest of my people.

Yesterday was a very good day. 

Friday, October 24, 2014

Bar Chatter

Bar chatter #31
Sometimes it ain't enough to equal a whole post, but still needs to be said.... it's bar chatter.

Good Old Sportscenter in it's prime
Sportscenter. Although Fox Sports 1 is a valiant effort, much like the NFL it covers, ESPN is pretty much a natural monopoly. I can watch the same Sportscenter three times in a row, and most fans I know can do the same thing. But I don't like the new set. Just don't. I realize it's designed to make the reporting "more consumable" but, um, no.

The new "improved" Sportscenter - meh.
The old Sportscenter set felt comfortable, intimate, like they were reporting to you. The reporters in close proximity give it a cozy sensation. By contrast, the new Sportscenter set feels like, like the owner of Channel 43¼ is trying to prove that he owns a real TV station. It gives the impression they're announcing from a barn. The new set is too big, to flashy and is just trying way too hard.

There, I've said my piece. Do as you will. Play on.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Things I meant to comment on...

Ramblings Post #273
I've been busy. Kinda busy. I have been working on things and but probably need to refine my schedule a great deal. In any case blog posts take time to craft. Sometimes days. These are still raw when I thin about it. But life keeps moving and I've been see-sawing between really busy...and really lazy. Job hunt, work on the novel, wash some clothes, nap, job hunt, etc,. But the world hasn't stopped for me, and I need to say a thing or two. Or five.


People are shooting in Canada now?  Do you even realize how wrong that even sounds? That it was a militant Islamist is even more disturbing. Quick note to the rest of Islam, the concept of "not snitching" or standing passively by while others wreck the very idea of what you stand for isn't a good look. I realize militants don't represent all of Islam, but the longer this festers the more this becomes...not a good look. On the upside, the Canadian press is glorifying the rescuers, not the attackers. Which may be the first time a national press has done it right. Take notes people.


Since I didn't really plan on touching the bodily fluids of any other folks, I really wasn't too worried about catching this disease. AND, since most of the folks in the US who have caught the disease have pulled through, same sentiment. That we don't want to acknowledge the very real threat of climate change we see clear evidence of but will accept the hyperbole regarding a disease you have to be practically on top of someone to catch speaks volumes about perceptions. Volumes. 

Ferguson, MO

Considering that there is some validity to the old cliche that a district attorney could get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich, that idea that there are now emerging stories that all the eyewitnesses who've appeared agree with the officer's version is entirely believable. Baffles me, but I believe it. What truly amazes me about this are the lengths the local police force is going through to avoid a trial where both parties interests are represented. All that overtime for officers, equipment, grand jury time, etc. It would have been cheaper to just take him into custody, let him post bond and have an actual trial. Much cheaper. Especially since according to many we'd get the same result. Or would we?

Senate Races

I live in Georgia, and the insanity that I have seen makes me wonder what it's like in swing states. I weep for those people.

My Diet

I know I'm fat again. But there have been too many things in flux, too many uncertainties, and the comfort of chili dogs and french fries or Krispy Kreme doughnuts fills a void like no other. I got to get back on the horse, but now....we eat. 

Avengers Trailer

Still haven't seen the first one. Seriously. Why it can't pop up on HBO, or Showtime, or even FX which is where I saw Thor for the first time I have no idea. I realize it made a lot of money so it's final distribution channel was delayed, but it's been years now people. Years. Distribution to third or fourth markets cannot be problem now, can it? This, this right here, is why piracy exists.

Steve Nash

We who have passed the milestone know that 40 is not that old, but it's a little old to playing pro basketball. And since you hurt your back carrying luggage... *smh*. Dude, the term is broadcast booth, announcer, front office. You were a legend in your time. Your time has passed. Let it go. I'm still down for my Lakers though.

Barkeep, I need a Cosmopolitan. I used make them years ago, and it's been so long.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Spel-House Yeah!

Ramblings Post #272
So many glorious nights, so many beautiful faces, so many experiences that fill the book of life and make moments of memory the sweetest part of living. Or, you could live in Atlanta and you don't have time for memories, because it's just on like that.

As you may or may not know, I did not attend Morehouse University. And I guess it goes without saying I did not attend Spelman University. I think I visited once, but that's not important. With the annual FAMU game no longer a thing, the "one big party" thing that used to happen in Atlanta for what are normally considered "middle class" black people was relegated to just this affair: The Morehouse/Spelman homecoming. Maybe one other thing too, I've been out of the loop for a minute.

Note that I did not wake up on Saturday and go out there. Too much going on for me, poor old bones, wooo, a little pear tea before I get the vapors.

One of the great traditions of HBCUs are the homecoming events, which typically are affairs where the actual game is more a ritual than the main event and the majority of the alumni attendees treating it like a class reunion. You show up, catch up with old friends, go home. Or in the modern era, make plans on FB, show up, show off, go home, remove old friends from friends list. I didn't have the inclination to do that, because I really only kinda know them folks. But, since grown folks now tend to throw better parties, I was up for a little hangout on Friday night.

My RP hipped me a little drop in at a spot called the Negril Village a few blocks south of the Fox theater. The name through me, because most Jamaican eating spots are low-key affairs, and this weekend was supposed to be high tone. I was pleasantly surprised. Very upscale, all brick and dark wood with  a great looking bar area and what looked like comfy booths. The upstairs event space, where the function I was attending took place was nice as well, with it's own private bars. And it turned into a real get funky, sweat dripping, shake your booty party.

All the way turned up. All. The. Way.
At some point, perhaps unable to grab a drink, my fellow revelers decided to head north to Buckhead, and ended up at the Rose bar, which I remember as an old piano bar that was sitting right in the middle of everything but an odd place to end up. Well now, everyone's found it and it was jumping. I think they added a deck on the front - or maybe it's been there a while - and they took out the piano but it's still the little hideaway it's always been, now just turned up to 100. Very nice.

After playing Uber and dropping my folk off, I ended up at this place called Delia's Chicken Sausage Stand.  Please note, that until I walked in, I had never noticed the word "sausage" in the name. I usually pass it on North Ave headed someplace else, but instead of the long ride out to a Waffle House then back home, I decided to give it a go. They had a crowd, and if I can find something on the menu I like I'm going to drop in one night and just hang out, but the link chicken sausage wrapped in egg on a hoagie roll just didn't do it for me. Maybe I should have tried the sauce, or looked at something besides breakfast. It was interesting though.

And after my first night out in... I seriously have no idea, but it has to have been months, I kept in Saturday. I would have made biscuits, but something is wrong with my stove so I got to get that checked. In any case, it's nice to know that even as I've dropped below the radar that Atlanta is still out there, having a good time.

Barkeep, a nice glass of Chablis. And do you know if the drug store carries hair dye? No reason. For a friend.   

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Cowboy fans have got no chill

Ramblings Post #271
It is my theory that everyone is a closet Cowboy fan at the very least. You might hate them and curse their name, but you know the whole football season doesn't feel right if the Cowboys are just pitiful.  I often tease people with the taunt that "Your favorite player on your favorite team wishes he played for the Cowboys." That this is completely true is beside the point.

Thank You Reddit, r/Cowboys! - itsaboat
I'm a Cowboy fan. If you've read this blog you know that, and over the years I've lamented as to the antics of owner Jerry Jones that as of late have made this storied team the very manifestation of mediocrity. But now, coming off wins against a very good New Orleans team and the defending world champion Seattle Seahawks - in Seattle where the Seahawks were 19-1 over the last 20 - things are finally looking up. A five game win streak, an established running game that we'd neglected for far too long, a little confidence. We have a right to feel good about our team.

But as soon as the final gun sounded in the Northwest, well really even before then, my people lost their damn minds.

Yes, I enjoyed watching ESPN's the Blitz talk about my team for 10 minutes instead of just glossing over the game during the rundown. Yes, I enjoyed Sportscenter playing up the win and the Sunday night football mentions. I also enjoyed the Skip going in on Stephen on First Take and discovered that ESPN actually has a show with two black commentators that comes on at noon - Numbers Never Lie. And that one of the hosts is a Cowboy fan. And he made it a point to reiterate the Dallas win during every segment.

My brother has long said he finds Cowboy fans insufferable, for in the past as soon as Romo completes a difficult pass or the team pulls out a close one, Cowboy fans start talking Superbowl run. Might have been a fluke play that only happens once in million years that won the game but we don't care, it's a sign of greatness we swear, cross our hearts. Monday after the big win was that on steroids. Talk that maybe the Cowboys were the best team in the NFL started immediately. It only went further into overdrive from there.

Okay, I'll admit came to the conclusion looking at the schedule where the next four games are the Giants (who are self destructing), the Washington team (who already self destructed) the Cardinals and the Jaguars (who invented self destruction) that the 'Boys could end up at 9-1. Yes, I realize the Cardinals are playing good ball right now, but so were the Seahawks. Winning at least three out of the four, or just all four is plain good football analysis right there, make no mistake. That I also see a 13-3 season with playoff home field advantage and Superbowl shootout victory over the Broncos is pure speculation. BUT IT COULD HAPPEN! 

Okay Let me say this.

People. Let's calm down. Is it looking good for the squad? Oh yes it is. Does this look like better than a 8-8 season? Oh most certainly. But I've been at the gate too many times only come up short, and ya'll been with me so you know how I feels. What I need is the Cowboys to clinch a playoff spot with a two weeks left. That it not come down to the last game of the season for the NFC east title. Not that I don't think we'll win, but we just don't need to tempt fate like that. We just don't. Been there, done that.

Barkeep. Let's break out the good bourbon. It's gonna be a long season.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

The House I Want (Part Three)

Planning for the Future Post #3
First you dream. Then you plan. Then you execute. Then repeat.

The kind of place you can pitch a tent...just because.
I want a big backyard. And God knows I never wanted to the cut grass when my folks used to make me - an all day job involving two hills, long thick grass that couldn't just be cut but required an angle technique, patience and repetition, in a space with a dearth of trees that under a South Carolina sun that brought back genetic memories of less than pleasant times. I'm sorry, I just had a flashback.

But I still want a yard. A big flat one, like billiard table flat. And a deck overlooking it. Where I can cook-out and have friends over. Where I put a garden, have sculptures and other things people might not believe I enjoy. Where I can sit on the back deck, with a cool drink on a summer's night and look up at the universe. And breathe. 

In my wildest imagination it's a city townhouse, I can buy the building behind it, tear it down and make myself a yard. But you know what would be really cool? Have a town-home, buy and tear down the building behind it. Build a bridge over the next street back, buy that townhouse and tear it down too. The backyard would be elevated, so I could have a two cool sub-basements on the back. Now that's how you dream!

I want a yard.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Getting out in the AM

Ramblings Post #270
It is said that you can't keep a true player down. When he falls off in one spot he just pops back again somewhere else, with brand new game and does it all over again. That might be Iceberg Slim or a seventies blaxplotation movie, I'm not sure. Or maybe a urban interpretation of Kipling. But since I consider myself a true player, FROM THE HIMALAYA, it's time for me to pop back somewhere with a new hustle.

I took this with phone. So attribution to me. Sucka!
This is not an ad for Starbucks, or an endorsement, but as a method of "re-acclimating myself with society" after accidentally turning myself into a hermit I've taken up residence at the local coffee establishment. And let me tell you, putting on pants daily is a wild experience! I'm kidding. But this does get me out of the house, up the street and into the company of other people trying to get their hustle on. After many, many years in a strictly office environment, the number of folks who have the freedom to wander in and pay four dollars for a cup of coffee in the middle of the morning is astounding. I shouldn't knock the hustle, but wow!

At 10:30 am the joint is packed, every table being used, every seat full, people standing at the counter, the drive thru humming. Yes, I realize most of you already know this happens, but I'm not a big coffee drinker. I actually use my coffee maker at home to make tea twice week. If I don't have a cuppa in the morning, I only lament wasting the coffee I've already purchased, scared it might grow stale. But my brother swears by Starbucks. I was considering getting a library card (and I still intend to get one) but this is more lively I must admit.

It is an interesting cross section of people. I've seen job interviews, business presentations and proposals, group meetings and seen people studying. One guy in the back has his own porcelain mug. The way one guy bobs his head in his headphones, I think he's mixing music, while others are just sitting and chatting or just checking email, folks reading the paper and maybe even plotting a coup in a unnamed Central American country. Or they could have been discussing a charity event, I'm not sure, it kinda loud in here. Young and old, sweater vest or baseball hat tipped to the side it seems like everyone comes to Starbucks. Maybe the library would have been better.

So, what's the point of this post? None, really. I haven't been posting in a minute, and since I'm now a "regular" I thought this would be nice filler. I do try to switch it up - some days morning, others its the afternoon. Sometimes a different Starbucks... and for the love of Georgia do not get their Sweet Tea. I just remembered that. They know coffee. Think about that for a minute.

They do play some nice jazz though.

Barkeep, no I don't want a double half caffeinated mocha latte frappa-whatever with a shot. Can I get just a coffee? Plain coffee.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

He had a certain dignity. A certain bearing.

As the Mysterious Baron Samedi...
You have to be a certain age to appreciate he who was Geoffrey Holder. A tall imposing figure of a man, he sprang into existence in the greater cultural conscious as Baron Samedi in the classic James Bond film "Live and Let Die". He is actually the first movie henchman to not be killed, predating the legendary character Jaws by almost four years. I was mystified watching as the credits rolled and his very much alive figure straddled the front of the train that carried a triumphant Bond sped into the night...after Bond had supposedly killed him. Twice. 

Or if you're a bit younger you might remember him as the libertine art director in Eddie Murphy's also now classic opus to love "Boomerang." Holder's distinctive deep baritone voice, his interpretation of the words on paper to create the character of Nelson. The man in a few screen moments managed to portray an odd, educated yet wickedly perverse person, whom you knew you wanted to hang out with just ONE time so you could say you did it. Think about all the other characters in the film, wouldn't Nelson have been someone to follow into the night for drinks...just to see what would happen?
Geoffrey Holder - Actor.

But in reality he was a actor. A stage actor. Live theater. No retakes, just talent. Winner of Tonys. Revolutionary is how people have referred to him. And most of us were just amazed by the little we did see. Imagine had we been privy to it all. Mr. Holder, I wish there had been an opportunity to see more of your magic. But thanks just the same, for I am grateful for what I did receive. 

Monday, October 6, 2014

Odd Quotes

Photo from Somewhere. I wish I give it the proper credit.
 “Self-acceptance comes from meeting life's challenges vigorously. Don't numb yourself to your trials and difficulties, nor build mental walls to exclude pain from your life. You will find peace not by trying to escape your problems, but by confronting them courageously. You will find peace not in denial, but in victory.”
~ Swami Sivananda