Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Obviously Extreme Home Makeover needs to conduct "are they stupid?" tests first.

As per this story, one would think that if one had to go on national TV and beg for a reality show to come and help your broke ass, then one would think you would do everything you can to NEVER again be in that spotlight. Did these people really think that once the cameras left the street that no one would be watching them? Hello! You just got a BIG ASS house, the largest one of its time built by EHM, that towers over all the neighbours. Do you honestly think that those poor saps who work for a living are not jealous, envious and pissed that while they still are trying to make ends meet that you are living in the lap of luxury, all bills and ills taken care of?

And how dumb do you have to be to not know that the real estate and construction business is in the shit in the US so should be the LAST thing you want to invest money in that is NOT really yours. Did you secure a job to pay back that loan while you tried to get the business off the ground or did you expect everyone to hire you because you were on TV? Why not a proven franchise like Subway's or McDonald's or something recognizable and is a sure thing to bring back in money? Why not at least a proven business at least that is not as big a risk and is something everyone wants (i.e. gas station (I know it has its own issues), convenience store, coffee house). There are a number of different businesses they could have tried and succeeded at but they went looking for the big score. They gambled and they lost; they LOST a lot of OTHER people's money, hard work, kindness and generosity. They also lost everyone's respect.

I can see them getting money from the house to do something that helped themselves and helped other people in the process. I don't see how getting a loan of that size was for anything that trying to live higher off the hog since they had a taste of the good life and wanted it to continue long after the cameras were gone. There is absolutely nothing wrong with chasing the dream but there is something VERY wrong if you do so and yet AGAIN put your family in danger. The parent or parents of this family are severely negligent and should be ashamed of themselves. They should apologize to ABC, to the EHM team, to the builders, to the volunteers, to the city, to the mayor, to their neighbours but especially to their children. To put them family in the spotlight in such a negative light is simply unconscionable.

It's not just bad form, it's bad parenting. And it's just plain stupid.

href=''>CANOE -- JAM! - 'Makeover' house faces foreclosure

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

You don't have to be black to understand...

But to be honest, it helps.

I am certainly not the person you will find crying foul about "the man" keeping me down or constantly lamenting the dragging of my ancestors over on slave boats or anything like that. All in all, I've let a fairly decent life with relatively few incidents of racism. However, I cannot dismiss that there are definitely people, like my parents, who faced and continue to face much more hardships brought on simply by the colour of one's skin.

I married a white, Jewish woman who I love dearly. Being Jewish, she and other members of her family have faced their share of prejudice and scorn. However, as I pointed out to her a couple of times in our years together, it is not the same and simply cannot be compared. While there are certain characteristics that are passed down in genetics of a Jewish family, most of those tend to not become prominent until the person grows older. For example, the hunched back, certain facials features, etc. The younger, modern Jewish person is typically not recognized as Jewish until they open their mouths and either use a known Jewish phrase or specifically tells someone they are Jewish. We are not so fortunate.

One is immediately identified as a black person from birth! It is simply a matter of looking at the person in question. Yep, I'm black. Always have been, always will be.

And it is in the outward identification that partially lies the issue. Humans are very visual animals so if they associate something with a particular image (i.e. in movies and theatre, the colour black is used to portray wrongness, evil, danger, death, negativity, low worth, etc.), then they have a hard time when the image is applied to something foreign to them. I do not believe that games, movies and TV should be blamed for this alone. Yes, early on they reinforced the stereotypes that branded a people harshly but what is the excuse for the here and now in 2008? Why are the black women still so angry? Why are the black men still leaving them with children ? Though that one may be answered by the previous question or is the cause of it. Why are the jails filled with black men and black youth? Why are the education and social programs geared to placate instead of actually helping uplift? And to borrow (and paraphrase) a line from Mr. Singleton's 'Boyz 'N The Hood', "Why is there a liquor store on almost every corner in the projects, Harlem and the ghettos of major cities but not the same in Beverly Hills and the O.C. and Martha's Vineyard and Park Avenue and the other affluent neighbourhoods in America"?

The answer is simple and the solution is almost as much. Don't frequent those businesses and they will close or change to survive. Don't feed and perpetrate the stereotypes. Keep the family together and if you cannot, at least ensure the members ALL survive and thrive. Don't look for the easy way to success on the backs of or in spite of your neighbour who has found a way to make good. Especially don't try to bring them down because your ass is too lazy to lift yourself up. All of these things are simple. NONE of them are easy.

And it does not just go for the Blacks/African descendants (I hate the new age terms), but for every easily identifiable immigrant and descendant of an immigrant including my Orthodox friends. We are all our worst enemy in this regard and we only need a modicum of control and thought to fix it. As the saying goes, if you are not a part of the solution, you ARE the f**king problem.


Special Reports - Black in America

Editor's NOTE: I heard Nas on our local urban radio station, FLOW 93.5. I listen to a lot of different styles of music but I would have to say that Dance, Old School and Top 40 are my many genres of music. While I listen to a fair amount of Hip Hop, it tends to be either Old School Rap or more dance-like tunes; the mainstream stuff. I tend to find a whole album full of more self-serving babbling than anything I could get into. Hearing Nas' words though intrigued me to listen to the whole thing. So, to insure it was worth it, I do what I always do; I downloaded it off the Net. If I like an album, I buy it; the proof is the thousand or so CDs that we own. I will be buying this album and supporting the Artist. While I won't ever play it repeatedly, I will play it enough to hear and understand and interpret the words. I think that is what he wants us to do. The cover, as he explained it, came about from the pushback he received to title his album with the dreaded 'N' word. Since mainstream stores were not ready for the inevitable backlash that would come from doing that, he and a friend came up with the untitled album cover below. The image is SO powerful that putting ANY writing on the cover would have detracted from the image. It works and it is effective. I asked DW what she thought about the cover when I sent her the jpeg image. I did not say anything else because I wanted her honest reaction; it was much different from my own which further cements my comments above. That is not to say in ANY way that her impression was wrong; it was just different. Understanding that is what is going to bring this world closer instead of furthering the mess that we live in now. Peace.

Please comment on what were your impressions on seeing the cover. Thank you.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Best opening line in an article EVER!!

Everybody loves Chris Rock standup
By SHANE ROSS - Sun Media

OTTAWA - Anyone worried about being offended at Chris Rock's show last night should've stayed the f--- home.

NOTE: DW and I saw this at Rama on Tuesday night (thanks again Gemini) and this is the second or third time we have seen him. I do not know why they are saying his career needs resurrecting. Does the writer have hit movies? Nope. Does the writer have a hit TV show? Nope. Does the writer have a successful production company? Nope. Can the writer fill halls and auditoriums with everyone from underage teens with fake IDs to silver and blue-haired handicapped folks who would usually be welded to a 2-cent slot machine? Nope. So, exactly what does he need resurrecting? Personally, with all due respect to Mr. Shane Ross, on this subject he should just shut the f--- up.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

One for the books

Anyone that knows me knows that I will probably speak to you via email or MSN before I do on the phone. As such, I am constantly seeing SPAM of all sorts (not just penis mail). The following is directed SPAM, as I call it, because there is a person behind the specific intent. I would make note of the email address and style so that you can avoid such people like the plague in the future. If you want to know why I accepted them in the first place, that's simple: no one uses their real names in their email anymore so until you connect, you have no clue who it is. That is one of the problems with how MSN is set up. As well, what do we want from something free from Micro$oft?


Dixie says:

I am on vacation until Monday. Bother me at your own peril! says:
Hi. Are we acquainted? says:
hey, A/S/L?:)

I am on vacation until Monday. Bother me at your own peril! says:
A/S/L? says:
hey whats up babe, U got a webcam? finally someone adds me, I am soo fuckin horny today for some reason lol

I am on vacation until Monday. Bother me at your own peril! says:
Sorry. Married. Happy. Content. Not interested in more than I have as I can barely handle that. Good luck on your quest. Take care. says:
listen hun, I am just about to start my webcam show with jen, come chat me there in my chat room? We can cyber, I will get naked if u!


At this point I simply stopped responding and then blocked the person from chatting with me any further.

You knew it was going to happen sooner or later.

It will be very interesting to see how this one plays out. If Psystar
wins, it will open the doors for MANY Mac clone companies to start
selling their goods. If they lose, which is probably what will happen,
it will possibly close the doors forever on me and my fellow Mac OS X
devotees of being able to freely and legally install the operating
system on the hardware of our choice WITH Apple's blessing and more
importantly Apple's help in terms of drivers and support.

I truly do understand Jobs and company's insistence on quality control
and keeping everything in house. One look at the range of crap to
crystal in the IBM PC world will tell you that you may not want the
same fate for your beautiful OS. That said, I can buy a $200 computer
WITH Windows installed on it. I'll drop the argument to allow Mac OS X
to the masses when Apple can deliver anything remotely close to that
price point.


Apple Finally Sues Psystar; Asks for Recall - News and Analysis by PC Magazine

Apple Finally Sues Psystar; Asks for Recall - News and Analysis by PC Magazine

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Does this actually work? If so, cheaper than the Disc Doctor(tm)!

Rogers(tm) is on serious crack!!!

They would have been heroes, they would have had people lining up for blocks, they would have had huge positive press and good will... instead, they get the opposite of that and fuel the fire that they are a bunch of money-grubbing, greedy, non-client oriented boobs that don't have a clue. All Rogers had to do was match the price plans of AT&T and all would have been well. Instead, they tried to continue their cheating, greedy ways to nickle and dime their customers. It is why I dropped their Home Phone service and why I am working on dropping their Internet and TV services as well. I enjoy the service but they are NOT the only game in town and they need to start acting like it. Hey Ted, get a clue and pay some attention to your paying customers instead of just your sad sack baseball team.

The press release on the minor appeasement that Rogers has offered up is better than what they started with but no where near close enough to AT&T's offering. 6GB. $30/month. Unlimited. $10/month. Understanding the difference? Priceless.

This link will take you to the press release.


Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Want to know how men and women really relate?

Submitted by DoubleD.

Dave Chappelle is one of the best observational comedians on the planet today. He is one of the few comedians that can get away with talking about anything, anybody, anyhow he damn well feels. He simply does not give a f**k what people think. Then again, maybe he does because his material hits exactly where we need him to. We WANT him to say that, we WANT him to make those observations public so that we can laugh about it together instead of being shunned as bad people.

Dave rocks!!