what narcissism means to me… a mixtape.

1. Clip from taped interview with George W. Bush for Matt Lauer Reports: MATT LAUER: Well, what he said, “George Bush doesn’t care about black people.” PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: That’s – “he’s a racist.” And I didn’t appreciate it then. I don’t appreciate it…

‘who is this america dem speak of today?’

‘Either I’m nobody, or I’m a nation.’ – Derek Walcott My partner in crime and literati madness, Lynne, and I continued this conversation about America, American identity, narratives, and plurality over the weekend. I summarized my recent post for her at our stomping ground while…

‘you used to be alright. what happened?’

(saunters in…takes earbuds out ears) Oh, Hey. Wassup?? So I’ve neglected my favorite space for a grip. Sorry about that. I think I needed more time and space to unpack the assault of information, misinformation, opinion, rss feeds, tweets, status updates, check-ins, mayorships, blogs, rants,…

“What difference do it make if the thing you scared of is real or not?”

A school district in Indiana has decided to ban Toni Morrison’s Song of Solomon. Students at Franklin Central High School had to return an award-winning but controversial novel halfway through reading it Wednesday after complaints surfaced about its appropriateness. District administrators say Toni Morrison’s “Song…

the black tea partier…

At last year’s Tax Day Rally in New Dorp, Staten Island, I did in fact, meet ONE black Tea Party supporter. I’m not sure if he’s still kickin’ it with them today. He was a curious oddity to me. I don’t remember his name, but…

lost in translation.

Warning: This is an extremely meta post. In response to a recent NYT article in which I was quoted, a very clever reader I assume, googled me, found my Facebook profile and proceeded to send me the following message: Speak for yourself. Asian and Indian…

there’s a party at the crossroads…

A few months back this earworm invaded my mental mind and prompted me to post it as a stub. Today, it’s my writing prompt as I re-read Pygmalion and think about the code/switch. For the uninitiated, here is a sampling of X-Clan’s tome to the…

A Misrepresented People

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qD5Yf8kn3Wk]

My mom likes crap movies. She always had. I like indie movies. Films that break open or challenge conventional sociopolitical norms. I like nuance. I grew up in a poor, working class neighborhood. I can’t really explain why I like what I like. Looking at both parents, my tastes probably come from my father. My father was a mix of street and academy. He loved Gil Scott Heron and Led Zeppelin. My mom loved the Stylistics and Sister Sledge. I grew up knowing and loving all of it, but the complexity in Heron and Zeppelin carried greater weight.

In the aftermath of the Tyler Perry interview on 60 Minutes on Sunday, I remembered this variety of tastes in my own family. Perry’s interview ended on a sour note as he responded to Spike Lee’s criticism of his films. Yet, it left a set of lingering questions for me.

Does every black artist have a responsibility to represent only positive aspects black life in relation to the white imagination? Or can it be represented as it is? Because being black in America often means trying to prove you’re something you’re not. Our cultural identity is formed in opposition of a projected ‘norm’ [ahem, whiteness]. We’ve internalized and accepted our identity based on what white folks will think of us. What do we actually think of ourselves?

never dreamed you leave in summer…

I don’t think we could have ever anticipated that the Summer of 2009 would be marked by the passing of giants and innocents. Neda Agah-Soltan Farrah Fawcet Ed McMahon Michael Jackson Walter Cronkite Shem Walker John Hughes Eunice Shriver Ted Kennedy Patrick Swayze A generational…

towards a rational conversation on topics of great discomfort

Jay Smooth’s Illdoctrine videoblog is something I return to often and highly recommend. His apt deconstruction of the popular topics are brilliant little gems that also entertain. It’s lonely in your head sometimes when you’re trying to tease meaning in the maelstrom of commentary upon…