Archive for June, 2010


So this is one of those “where were you when you heard…” moments – similar to the aftermath of “9/11” – that I have to write it about on impulse. 

June of 2009 was especially memorable for me because of the celebrity deaths that affected  life.  Beginning with the wierd circumstances (circumcisions?) surrounding David (“King Fu”) Carradine in Thailand on June 3rd, to Tonight show sidekick and ad pitchman Ed McMahon days before MJ on the 23rd, to one of the first “supermodel” actresses, Farah Fawcett on the same day, the 25th and then for another month thereafter with actress Gale Storm, whose show was one of the first I ever watched on old black & white TV as a boy; then frantic late night TV commercial ad pitchman Billy Mays (no wonder he was so hyped-up! lol), then cherished pioneer television evening news anchor man ( the first one to really popularize that term) Walter “uncle Walt” Cronkite of CBS News, favorite boxer from back in New Jersey, Auterro Gatti (more strange circumstances), football quarterback Steve McNair (a hero even though I’m not a Titans fan) slain by his paramour (I worked only yards from the crime scene at the time and fortunately got off work before the media circus began that day), and finally main-character actor of “The Streets of San Francisco”, Karl Malden.  June of the double-oh-nine was a life-isn’t-forever reality check, leaving those of us who remain here in the physical world with the usual unanswered questions…

I remember where I was when I heard the news about Michael Jackson – my friend, “kool Ronnie B”  was in town for the week visiting me from Atlantic City, it was hot outside and I  was showing him around town.  We were driving towards lunch at a cafe` near my house from downtown on Eighth Avenue, when the news came over the NPR jazz station’s top-of-the-hour newscast.  Since we were in conversation, during a pause, I looked over to him in the passenger seat of my car and said, “Did you just hear what I heard, Michael Jackson died??”  About that time my girlfriend, who had just  “officially” dumped me two weeks prior, called to find out if I still wanted her to take Ronnie around town that evening while I pulled my shift at the radio station.  I told her it was still on if she was into it and asked had  she heard the news about MJ.  She couldn’t believe it.  The lady stepped-up to the plate and chaperoned my friend around town that night while I worked and then joined up with them late that evening, keeping her word; it must have been her human nature to do so – one of her magnamamous qualities.  Oh yes, and that was the other  significant death that makes me remember where I was when “the gloved one” passed away – that of my relationship with the girl from Bela lugosi, err, “rus”.

  So you see why I say that June 2009 was a bitch for deaths as viewed through my precise and loving lens.  So… where were you when you heard the MJ news?

Classic Live Smokey Robinson (actually after The Miracles when he was solo in 1979)…for your Summer Cruisin’ pleasure …”Hey Nowww!”  (the late Hank Spann)….Welcome to summer 2010…Where There’s Smoke…There’s Fire!  “Don’t forget to stop by and pick me up!!”

From the lip-sync days, but I always thought that Smokey insisted on having a live mic and singing it – because he is the master writer/singer/composer – still.

Sooo…can you stand one MORE? Ok…See, feel, hear the chemistry grow between Smokey and Kim Karnes; two great singers vibing.  Check out the bandmaster in the background keeping the musiciansin the pocket!  I rest my cask.

P.S. Be sure to hit the “full screen” button!

I’ve wanted to express this for years, but I never had a blog before.  So, now is my chance!  Fathers Day, like Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day are inane, commercially trumped-up non-holidays for the “haves” to enjoy if they remember it, and the have-nots to be guilted into what they cannot afford to buy.  These are occasions that should be celebrated daily, not on some contrived “day” once a year.

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My father died in the year 2000, days shy of his 82nd birthday and I can say that basically I do not miss him because he never was one to call me up and shoot the breeze with me or travel to whatever of the several states that my career took me to and visit me to just “kick it”.  He never had the “bird and the bees” talk with me (brought home books for me to read about sex), but he was there.  He was known to my friends as the father who “lifted weights in his basement” all the time or chased the neighborhood kids off “the grass” (his other hobby I guess, was mowing the lawn, lol). Nothing much for me to miss; fatherhood is nice, but in my case overrated. 

Mine was around, and married to my Mum for over fifty years (!)  until he passed away.  He was never my friend; he was there, but never my partner.  More the disciplinarian, which kept me out of criminal trouble because as a weight-lifter/parole officer, he had an iron hand upon my shoulder or whatever body part he would grab of mine, that I remember to this day.  He only seemed truly happy to see me during his final years when I appeared from out of town, awakening him from his slumber in the backyard chair outside our house (his  house really).  I thought, “Ain’t this a bitch? Homie NOW is happy to see me?”

He did instill in me to workout with weights and exercise, and… did I mention that he was around? But if I asked him for a “a couple of bucks” to go to the movies with my friends…he would give me only two dollars.  What a bastard and cheapskate! Meanwhile he is playing the horses at the track, winning and not sharing with the family.  Oh did I mention he was always  “there“?  He never drank  liquor or even a beer ( I wish he had at least once in front of me)  nor smoked.  He never threw the baseball or any other ball for that matter with me like the other “dads’ on the block, and never encouraged me to participate in Little League baseball even though I was a very good pitcher and outfielder.  I still resent him for that.  Yeah, he emphasized education, but that was going to happen anyway growing-up with two teachers in da house!  He never wanted to barbque on the holidays like the fourth of July even though we had an ample yard.  He’d say some bullshit like, “Cooking outside reminds me too much of the war…” WTF???  “Well stay inside and let the rest of us have fun!” I would think.

As an adult, whenever I came to him to impress him with something I learned from him, but with a modern or easier perspective on it, he would cackle laughter and walk away, making me feel stupid.

My Dad did take me to a few Yankee games back in the ‘60s at the old Yankee Stadium. I always got the seat behind the pole.  I still have a bat from one of the “bat Days” he took me to, and my friend Spencer and I did get on-camera during one of the Banner Days over WPIX channel eleven in NYC one time. Yeah he was around and never beat up on Mum, although I saw one time when he almost did pop her – that was when my Mum wanted to abort my sister because she felt she was too old to be pregnant.  I tried to intercede between their argument and they both turned on me.  “Oops!” Back up to my room I went.

He was a stick-in-the-mud, self-righteous, inflexible and pompous preachy party pooper who, when relatives from my Mum’s side of the family visited, went up the stairs early while they all were having fun playing cards.

Did I mention that he was around?  Never a “Way to go, Son!” or similar encouragement.  He was always more apt to raise his ample voice that I inherited, but know how to moderate, and pop me in my scull as he preached.” Pappa Don’t Preach”, Madonna said.

That was tolerable – he taught me respect for elders that way, and a kind of fear which is necessary but sorely lacking in too many young boys of today who are raised by single parents who are all too often females.

Did I mention hat he was around and “ok”? Yet embarrassed me by yelling at my friends if they even happened to accidentally step across his precious lawn’s corner?  Yes he did – yelling from his inside widow perch upstairs.  After he passed, we found a drawer where he had most of all the Father’s Day gifts we’d given him through the years – most unopened.  I must have been some kind of accident because I cannot imagine him as a kind of “lover” that would seduce my Mum; it must have been his WWII uniform swooning her.  My “dad” couldn’t see that it was words and not math or science that were my talents to be, yet insisted that I be the way he thought of me, and would have been overjoyed if I had enlisted into the Army during Vietnam, which was totally not for me.

All of which is to say that some of us aren’t so cushy about these types of contrived holidaze in the U.S.  As an added insult, my father’s daughter – fourteen years younger than I – is now acting like the man she wishes she was and because he didn’t discipline her nor allow her to play with neighborhood kids like I did, in the name of her turning out “better” than I, is trying to hurt me financially. Dallas the soap opera-style, “she” is trying drive a wedge between my Mum and me in order to get the “will” money. 

So I will continue to ignore this commercial and fake remembrance while I realize, as Mum says, that “there was no instruction booklet on being a father” [and I say to myself,  “then why did you guys have kids?”] Oh, did I mention that he was around, and I loved him for that anyway – even without a father’s “day”?  My lady tells me that he “wanted the best for me, but didn’t know how to show it”… Then maybe HE should have gotten a “book” and read-up about it.

  [from my book: “Sad Face King”]   

Not being in the frame of mind to tackle the weightier issues of these days herein, and having composed this romantic verse that is badgering the front of my skull to get out a couple of months ago, I relent and will let it fly.  “Do Not think heavy” mode….

I hear the following as a mid-tempo kind of Isley Brothers, PM Dawn or similar group ballad song for Pop or R&B or Adult Contemporary.  Just one ( almost meaningless in the virtual world)  disclaimer; If you like it and “steal” it to make a hit record or some derivitave thereof, please be kind enough to credit this lonely bachelor of words so that I might continue to have bread on my table and an occasional steak/chicken/fish/lamb shop on my grill. Deal?  Then again, I’m not a song writer, just an oft romantic poet in my wildest dreams.

This came to me while I was asleep, complete with the melody.  Hit me up if you want to hear the music I have in-mind.

Kissing-Up

Conversations entertaining,

She playfully challenges me everyday.

Our situation is maintaining,

Sometimes I don’t know what to say.

So I kiss-up to her,

Even though its not the best thing to do.

I kiss-up to her,

Especially when she tells me, “I love you.”

Intellectual stimulation,

The core of our encounters.

Eventual sensual titillation,

The intensity never flounders;

[Chorus]When I kiss-up to her!

And its not the best policy.

I kiss-up to her,

Even when she says, “You can’t handle me.”

True love takes work,

Eye-to-eye honest communication.

It is so special when you find a soulmate,

Who can help lead you in the right direction!

It won’t always be easy,

And sometimes you might break-up.

If you are to keep the communication,

Each one has to suck-it-up (taking turns).

Mental intercourse taking over,

She is at me again.

It doesn’t have to become an argument,

Our minds have towards each-other to bend.

[Chorus]That’s why I kiss-up to her,

To keep the eventual peaceful feeling!

I kiss-up to her,

The make-up sex is so soothing;

I kiss-up to her,

Though it’s not always the right thing to do,

Kissing-up to her,

Makes our bond so everlasting… [Repeat chorus to the fade]

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Six-twelve-ohh-nine

 On a sun-drenched afternoon,

One year ago as I dried my dreadlocks outside,

I called my “GirEL” to ask why she was so scarce,

After our recent one-year anniversary.

I missed her; we had dated for a nice year

That seemed like we knew each other forever.

She laughed and said something about something she had done,

That might not be “right”;

Then told me that “we have to talk”

“Can we meet someplace?” she asked.

I’d laid a similar gauntlet down a month earlier.

Wondering if she was just trying to get back at me,

I said,” Well I’m always here at the house…”

A month earlier we survived a summit;

This time from her flippant tone,

I feared we would not.

“Are you getting back with your ex-husband?”

She cackled into the phone a sarcastic, “Yes!”

At that point I knew to continue to sun-dry my hair out on my great lawn,

And pray that my intuition was wrong.

As a debility I let it slip, “I don’t want to lose you, GirEL,”

The needy kiss of death.

A year ago to the warm day,

From eyes of grayish-blue

She appeared to suddenly say,

The “magic” was no longer new.

Who said we had “magic” anyway?

Just a many great dates,

Some steamy sex that I am glad we took our time to get to

And an ongoing cultural exchange, is how I saw it.

Love takes work or the “magic” is tragic.

Today last year and tomorrow I didn’t want to live.

I still don’t half the time;

I guess the decision isn’t totally mine – yet.

Another year and the pain is often the same.

Maybe that is how it is in your late fifties as a bachelor man;

Is this how it will always hurt?

Or is that how good she was – or how mean?

 In this past year,

I have seen other friends come and die;

Many things I will never forget if I am the lucky one.

Like when she threw her right leg over my lap,

At the movies on Christmas night as we watched Meryll Streep.

Or the way she melodiously pronounced “hilarious!”

“You gotta be fuckin’ kidding me!?”

And “stop the fucking madness…”

American street slang with an accent from Minsk.

She didn’t know how much love to my ears,

Her voice would sing that way.

 

The green of the humid June air,

Reminding me again that I am a loser.

I guess I don’t do “love” very well anymore;

Even myself I do not often adore.

Thinking about her and me,

I can drift off into a zone of infinity.

Don’t get me wrong,

I am “ok” with it,

I have no choice even though choice is my staple;

Until and if my next – and last – romance occurs,

To finally hurdle my swooning June heart’s voice;

Turning memories ears away from hers.

Oddly better for the whole experience;

Except the empty way that it ended,

We began again briefly with a call from her for my help;

Lurched from the forest and with the late summer words “I miss you”

Almost repaired once more at a piano bar,

Only to finally fracture forever;

Texted and read by a mutual buddy now departed,

On a warm-then-suddenly-cold October night,

In a way, I am back beyond the time,

 Two years ago, in ’08, when we started.

YOu who liked “Chemistry” will like this hot UK pop singer most likely.  It is just sharing and a prelude to a heavy poem about an auspicious anniversary looming upon my life in mere days.  I feel a poem welling-up, so…stay tuned!!

If the Invaders from outer space look like these chicks, then”Take Me To Your Leader” – NOW! LOL

Below is an email I received from a man who used to be on the radio with me as a Community Volunteer on this University radio station. He likes to bounce things off of me, his educated Black American “brother” and that is all well, and good.  It is how we SHOULD communicate. We usually have good laughs about it; we all are ONE.  Maybe he knows I am really “the Good Humor Man” – like the sign implies, a chocolate bar on the outside, but creamy vanilla on the inside – as I was raised by my middle class Black American, first-of-their- free-generation-to-be-able-to-do-civil-service-jobs-across-the- board parents – of course.   However, this one I had to push back on him about. Please read the original email in-part below and first, then my response to it and judge accordingly.  Email address deleted to protect the guilty.

—–Original Message—–

From:

To

Sent: Fri, May 28, 2010 4:24 pm
Subject: oh just another political observation…that might piss some of you off…lol

took them several weeks to get their story straight on this one.  and it wouldn’t have come to this point had a fox journalist not asked obama about it yesterday at his “blame the oil company” press conference of which even cnn and msnbc are saying was horrible.  and after their lunch yesterday, bill clinton, who has never lied under oath, takes the hit.  lmao.  this is undoubtedly one of the most corrupt administrations to come along in years.  and the main stream media is slowly but surely having to wake up and acknowledge it.   and imagine had the oil spill taken place under bush’s administration.  the press would be screaming about it and blaming him for it and the total lack of response to it.  ironically very little has been done by the current administration about it.  how many weeks has it been now?  of course i am skeptical of all politicians and o has given me more reason to be.  he’s proven to be just another puppet.  and i loved his comment about how desperate the oil companies are getting having to drill for oil miles beneath the ocean floor.  duh, since we refuse to allow them to drill our biggest on land oil reserves what are they supposed to do.  it appears to be much safer and ecologically friendly to drill on land, so maybe they will wake up and issue more on land oil drilling permits.  but i am not holding my breath. I mean if we can ban all domestic oil drilling, then the middle easterners will hold all the power.  rock on king o rock on.  ha!

White House Used Bill Clinton to Pressure Sestak…….blah, blah blah…

 And the Achilliad response;

Now I like a good humor bar as much as the next guy and maybe more than many but…no LOL here.

I don’t “do” politics or religion…too divisive.  However, I WILL say this, and whoever can take it back to the racist talk radio pundits like Limbaugh who just want to nit-pick the First Blackish President of the United States and stir the caldron of hate.  President Obama (as much as you do not like to “hear” that expression) did not CAUSE not bears any “responsibility” for the BP/Deep H2O Horizon ( sounds like a sci-fi movie btw) oil spill disaster.  Actually No President can do much about a sudden natural or as in THIS case, man-made disaster.

Let us reset the timeline TRUTHfully now…

If we are to play the “blame game” visa v ANY of our recent leaders then Jock Ewing aka George HW Bush and his evil son “JR Ewing”, or “dubya” of the oil barons of the group should bear the brunt of it for putting in-place the access to drill in the Gulf of Mexico for US and worldwide oil companies, as well as those going back to the 1940s who began to drill and did not advertise it to the civilian population. 

Last time I checked, President Obama (I LOVE to say that) was not on-duty when those deals were made with a WINK and a Nod like the old “good ole boys (white man) network is legendary to do.  So STOP  the stereotypical race baiting double standard NOW .  The Bushwakers and Reagan endorsers are more complicit than our present President EVER will be over the past twenty years, and President Obama is only trying desperately to clean-up their mess while not seeming subservient in the role of another Blackish man having to clean-up after foolishly arrogant and greedy “white guys”.  This will have nothing to do with his “legacy”, none of us is perfect and last time I looked the most recent really “corrupt” Presidency was Richard Nixon’s. 

I know some white American people (esp. males) have trouble with a Blackish man in the Presidency, but get over it…it is our turn and NOW you get to see what it has been like for “US” lo these many past scores and decades, when our voices went unheard.  And what is with this calling him a “King”?  Oh, soo do some want to be like England again, eh?

 ’nuff Said’ as Marvel Comics’ Stan Lee used to say.  The plug needs to be pulled on hate talk radio; those who advertise on these divisive shows should be ashamed of themselves and their bank accounts funneled to those of us regular positive and friendly people who can use the money.

Hey! What ever happened to the Good Humor Man Ice Cream Truck, anyway? I loved those creamesickles!

 

 

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