Thursday, December 07, 2006
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Check it out and leave a comment or a suggestion
(I know the text is too small...I'm working on it! Oh, and Thanks to my wife for the wondeful work she did last night to get the thing finally up and working! YAY better half!)
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Bimbo tourist #1: Anyway, so when he pulled it out of me it made this farting noise, and I know it wasn't a fart because it didn't smell, and... It was just really embarrassing.
Bimbo tourist #2: Quip.
Bimbo tourist #1: What?
Bimbo tourist #2: A quip. The farting noise, it's called a 'quip.'
Bimbo tourist #1: Oh, they have a name for it? Wow.
Bimbo tourist #2: Oh, totally. It happens to a lot of people.
Stranger: Um, that's not right.
Bimbo tourist #2: Excuse me, sir?
Stranger: No, it's 'queef.'
Bimbo tourist #2: Wait, what?
Bimbo tourist #1: I think he's saying his name is 'Queef' or something.
Bimbo tourist #2: Oh, sorry. Excuse me, Queef?
Stranger: No... Oh, lord. The sound, it's 'queef.'
Bimbo tourist #2: Who's a 'queef?' What's going on?
Bimbo tourist #1: I think he's one of those crazy subway guys you hear about. I think he's telling us he's gay.
Stranger: I can hear you, and I'm not... What? That's 'queer,' you ingrate!
Bimbo tourist #1: Here's some money for you, sir. Buy your boyfriend a nice grocery cart or something.
Stranger: What?! Does it look like I'm homeless to you? I'm wearing fucking YSL over here... I ain't queer and I ain't homeless. You ignorant, you skinny, Paris Hilton-wannabe whores. All I was saying to you was that when your sleazy-ass friend over here pulled her boyfriend's dick out of her STD-ridden pussy, the word...
Bimbo tourist #1: I'm not following... Is he speaking Cockney or something?
Bimbo tourist #2: I don't know. Are you allowed to mace crazy hobos?
Stranger: ...I'm not fucking crazy!
Bimbo tourist #2: Of course you aren't, sir.
Passenger: Oh, shut your mouth, both of ya, or I'm gonna whoop both your scrawny asses, you hear?
Stranger: Thank you. All I was saying was...
Old lady: Ah, hell no! Can't you see this conversation has gone past anyone in this damn subway's comprehension? Know when to drop it, brother. Know when to drop it.
Bimbo tourist #2: [Mouthing] Oh my god.
Bimbo tourist #1: I know. That was intense.
Stranger, muttering to himself: ... Last time I ever take a subway... Unbelievable shit I put up with... Fucking Civics... Unreliable fuckers...
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
*Daughter points to something on the mantle*
Daughter: Whats that daddy?
ME: Thats a Clock.
Me, a bit unnerved: No, no...Clock...Clock
Daughter, proudly: Cock!
Me, having heart-attack: No baby...it's very important to say the L...Lock..lets just call it a Lock
Me: Right! Now go to your room...
I mentioned on Dwights blog some time ago, about the power of words and how the N-word, in particular has such a strange and necrotic effect on any sort of intelligent debate on race and racial issues in the country. As black people, is it enough to condemn someone who is non-black for using the slur but then allow and relish in it's use in popular culture by some of our favorite comedians? You can't have your cake and eat it too and you can't be surprised that if you cuss in front of your children, eventually, they will learn to swear just as well.
Dave Chapelle listed, among many other things, an intriguing (to me) reason why he left his staggeringly successful and popular show and a check for $50 million. He felt that his satire about race and racial issues was becoming so mainstream that the behaviors he was lampooning were being emulated, not because they were bafoonish and stupid and necessarily the subjects of ridicule, but because they were funny. He really started to feel the effects of seeing the word proliferate all over cable television, without editing, and without much fanfare. He was instrumental in helping to bring the word back into mainstream usage by all peoples, for good and for bad. Perhaps he had hoped (and I believe this) that by talking and using the word and making the whole thing so utterly ridiculous, that he could rob it of some of it's power to shape our dialog and get in the way of actually solving our problems of race. But I think he saw that goal unsurprisingly derailed.
While the Michael Richards Incident is sad, it's really just a flash in the pan of a much larger debate about the identity of african americans and our relationship to all aspects of our own popular culture, both what was homegrown and authentic, as well as what is reflected back onto us or fabricated and fed down our throats. THAT debate is much more complicated, harder to tackle, and ultimately, nearly impossible to solve.
Does knowing Michael Richards used a racial slur (and he really went to town on the guy...it didnt just slip out...) make his work on Seinfeld any less funny? Do you stop watching the show in syndication? I never watched the show (The TV gets turned on for sports, Grey's Anatomy, and the Xbox360) religiously but I've caught a couple of episodes, some of which were gut-wrenchingly hilarious. But I noticed (as with Friends and a couple of other High profile, mid to late 90's sitcoms) the strange absence of black people with any sort of actual merit in the show. Sometimes, there would be no black folks at all. But then again, sometimes I just look real hard for stuff like that. But then again, its very easy to notice.
Anyway...um...didn't I say something about not beating this dead horse?
*Kicks the rotting corpse of a horse*
Thats it...I'm done
Turkey Day is fast upon us folks! I hope you all are hip to the Brine method of cooking your turkeys. If not, I suggest you get yourselves and those responsible for cooking your bird HERE with all alacrity and due haste. Your tastebuds will thank you as the method will ensure your bird will be the most succulent your mouth has ever had the pleasure of dining upon.
The Sickness spreads! Cammy, our dear sweet child, has contracted a contagion of the nasty throat-filled with phlegm, runny nose, low grade fever variety. I stayed home with our sickly princess yesterday and Grandma has the duty today. Normally school is one of her favorite activities and she regularly asks on days she isn't going if the schedule can somehow be arranged to accomodate her desire for learning and fun. Today, she just wanted to go back to sleep. Poor thing.
Tune in next week when Benticore, Raquita, Grandma, Great Grandma, and Anubis serve as phlegm incubators in the small 1-act play entitled; 'Not without my Tissue!'
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
Is actually coming back. Gentle readers, let me tell you of a place, both strange a terrible. It is the place without the Blog, an empty, searing wasteland where curious thoughts tumble blindly, without purpose or audience. Nothing lives there; the ground is an ugly scrabble of dirt and dead roots of plants long devoured by time, the air dry and empty, pulling the moisture from your mouth greedily, like a suckling pig made of wind.
I wandered this place for weeks, lost, confused, alone. I carried with me a heavy burden: My life had pulled me into this nether region of woe and yet, as I stayed away, I began to Forget the way back, the way home.
That is until I realized something so simple yet profound to me. I am not Jesus.
Let that sink in. You might wonder, gentle reader, why I had confused myself with Jesus (not the one who sold you that used boombox off the back of his truck in 1987, but, you know, JC...The Man!) in the first place. Indeed, I had not known that I had tried to walk in his footsteps until a chance meeting and a non-sequitor from a well meaning but overly pedantic lawyer unfocused me and made me realize what I was doing. Lawyers? Ah yes...perhaps I should start at the beginning...
During the months of August, September, and October, my life took on complexity of cartoonish proportions. My father was Illegally jailed for non-compliance of a contempt of court charge dealing with his ongoing divorce/seperation with his 2nd wife who might just be the most evil person I know. He had sunk so far into depression that going to Jail was a Lift but he was not read his rights, he was not allowed to post bond or bail and was not even told the specific charge on which he was held.
My mother succumbed to the evils of alcoholism and we (myself and my wife, Raquita) were forced to put her in a Nursing home against her will. She agreed to give me power of attourney, and though she didnt want to go into the home, she knew that it was the best place for her.
My wife's sister got married.
My daughter started school (last week)
IT seemed as if life was not just throwing me curveballs, but fastballs, changeups, bean-balls, footballs, soccer balls, boomerangs, bean bags, bowling bawls, and a life sized blow-up doll of Pee-Wee Herman, just for it's own sense of evil comic absurdity.
And I thought I had to shoulder it all myself.
So I left and wandered the blogless wilderness for 40 days, soldiering on in what I thought was the true essence of manliness. You know, silently stoic, going down with the ship, holding together when other, mere mortal men, crack and scream under the pressure? Truly stupid stuff, but it seemed the right thing to do at the time, from my warped, fatigued point of view.
But then I met my fathers lawyer (the one my lovely wife secured for us). He talked about my father's case for awhile (my father has since been released, the Judge apologized for letting the whole thing happen and our lawyer is grinning about the chance to really ream the other lawyer for what he did to my father) but the conversation oddly segued into his experience with many pastors across the country, including our own pastor and his entourage with which he is never seen without in public. He said that Jesus, though he had his disciples, walked alone. Jesus carried the burdens and walked for the sins of all of us. Thank god that you and I dont have to.
My world stopped. Right. There.
I am not jesus. I dont have to walk alone. I dont have to drown in this guilt, and stress and regret. I dont have to shoulder it alone.
It was an epiphany, one that I should have known all along but has lost sight of on the way. From that day forward, my life, though no less complex, became much Lighter. I hugged my wife. I kissed my kid. I got my father out of jail. But I didnt come back to the bloggosphere.
The epilogue: My mother is doing well, gaining weight and is happier. She's surrounded by people who know her and a few who love her, including her own mother, and though she gets bored, is much healthier there than on her own where she could be by herself and not allow anyone to see her (which is exactly what happened).
My Father is moving ahead with the divorce proceedings and has gone back on his medication. He told me that it must be working because he found himself singing in the car with the radio off. He's never done that in his life before and it made me so happy I nearly teared up in the vietnamese restaurant we were having lunch in.
Raquita's Sister's wedding went off without a hitch, my daughter stole the show as the flower girl and nearly burst my heart with pride as she walked down that isle. I couldn't help but shout 'Thats my girl! Thats my daughter!' to the rest of the church as she calmly walked down the isle, throwing her flowers and reminding me, painfully, that in 25 years or so, I will be walking her down that isle to give her hand to some guy she's fallen in love with....sigh...
Cammy loves school, she's having fun, learning well, and charming the pants off of her classmates and teachers. She cried the first few times we left her and now just wimpers a litte. The joy on her face when she sees us both we go to pick her up just lifts my head every day.
Me? I'm doing well. I'm starting a new excercise and meal program with my wife so we can eat healthier and lose some weight. I havent had a chance to write a lick in these past two months as nearly every night has had me either putting out fires or lighting them, but I look forward to the lull between thanksgiving and christmas.
So, to recap. I'm back. I'm NOT Jesus. I'm happy though my life is still full. And I've returned to blogging actively, though my new site isn't up yet. It will hopefully go up this weekend once I find the perfect artwork to set the basic template off...
(Sorry it took so long amigos...thanks for the offers of help...funny that it took a lawyer to snap myself out of...myself...)
Friday, October 06, 2006
After trying to work with this stupid blog and blogger beta (dont make the switch unless you're ready to deal with the consequences!) I'm going to be employing the big guns (my more web-savvy wife, Raquita) and this old blogspace is getting a complete rehaul. What comes out on monday might be NOTHING like what it is now...just be warned. I'm not gonna go all retarded midget monkey porn on you or anything, though so no worries there.
The Dog pic? Thats for another post. Call it some clever foreshadowing. Or just an excuse to put a pic up of a cute doggy+puppy combo. I prefer foreshadowing though...
Wednesday, October 04, 2006
Friday, September 29, 2006
Normally conversations like this don’t end well for listeners, especially if I’m involved. But bear with me. Um…bare with me? Hmm…now I’m thinking of naked bears…as opposed to clothed bears like Yogi (even though he only wore a hat and tie, that kinky bastard!)
Anyways, so I have this dream where I’m a part of an elite fighting group for a king. Sorta like the Sovereign Guard (Hi, Sherri!) but we dress in black and kill people We kill ‘em good. The king has his normal, everyday, 9-5 cannon fodder soldiers. Then he’s got his knight in shining armor, went to the
So I’m walking with the sexy, lithe princess, who’s a bit too…um…Nelly Furtado Promiscuous for the king’s tastes, when she asks me, ‘Sir Knight, what emotion were you trying to convey in this picture here?’ Then I see the picture she’s referring to; a woman lying in bed, under the covers, eyes closed, and a secretive smile on her face. But where are her hands? Oh. OH! Ahem! I hemmed and hawed and didn’t answer the princess, trying to find something else to talk about when the Kings men attack US!
(When I woke up, I thought to myself ‘I should have said “Self Discovery, Princess”! That would have been priceless!’)
Me, being the stalwart warrior of blade and brawn that I am, was not surprised by the surprise attack and engaged the foolish soldiers. We were sworn to protect the Princess and I guess the King got word that our leader had been protecting her with a little sword play of his own, if you get my drift. We wasted those guys pretty quick. They Are cannon fodder, after all.
Then came the archers and their clouds of arrows that they rained down upon us. More of my friends fell but me and three others escaped the castle into the deep forests nearby. That’s when things turned strange.
So we’re running from the castle when 6 evil Keebler elves, armed with swords, pop up out of no where and my friend says ‘Oh No! Not the Tricksters!’ My fleeing sword-brother runs Back to the castle, scaling a wall towards an empty room. Except the Tricksters magic is based on making people see things that aren’t there or not seeing things that are there. That empty room? Yeah…full of the kings elite soldiers. Poor guy is a pincushion before he’s inside the window.
I managed to shrug off the magical attack and take a few of the damn cookie-pushers down as I’m running. But then things go from bad to worse as the king lets out his hordes.
Suddenly, I’m surrounded by hundreds of evil, mace-wielding, green leather jerkin & trouser wearing oompah-loompahs who cackle manically and jitter around, all hopped up on Go-juice. So they jump us and I go into serious Jet Li mode…I mean I’m twirling and kicking and punching and dodging. The midgets are flying all over the place. It's AWESOME!
I can see the stream though. If I can just cross the stream, I’ll survive, I’ll be okay.
Oh No! I know what this means! I don’t want to die! I’m totally gonna get raped by the crackhead oompah-loompahs if I die…I’m so close…but then there was only the monologue and then the fade to black.
That’s when I woke up…
What does my dream have to do with the price of milk? No clue, but I thought it was interesting and vivid enough to tell you poor, poor readers about it.
In other news…
Not much going on in the world of Benticore. Well, there was the party for Daimushi when he came home for a week. THAT was bananas. Raquita did a fabulous job organizing and getting our home ready, while I played the dutiful worker bee. We stayed up all night Friday cooking (3 meat Lasagnas, a roasted veggie lasagna that might be the single greatest pasta dish ever conceived, and a German chocolate cake that should probably be outlawed as a controlled substance) and painting (the stairwell, Cammy’s playroom), and cleaning (pretty much every space we had time to put a mop, duster, or broom to. The party was a smashing success, even though we told everybody when we meant so were still cleaning and cooking when the fist 15 guests arrived. Then we (me) stayed up till Saturday keeping the party going, and then cleaning. I washed dishes for 3 hours straight Saturday night. Sunday we KINDA got to sleep in, but still didn’t really get to sleep because Daimushi had to get going (he spent the night) so we had to wake him up. But all in all, everybody enjoyed the party, and ate well. Now if we can only recover financially from it, we’ll be all good.
Going to the Game Saturday to watch the Cards either get back on the good foot or continue one of the biggest end-of-season collapses in baseball history. I’m rooting for the former. Not much in the way of housework this weekend, I think, since we gotta get Cammy some clothes.
My question to you is…
Because my imagination sometimes (read: always and without fail) takes me to places that I don’t always want to go (read: I like it and it makes me grin but makes me impossible to have normal conversations with some days), I’m having some trouble imagining dreams that people might have that are mundane and don’t involve 1001 Freudian images to delight, disgust and confuse. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. So I wanted to ask, or start a sort of meme, I guess, about your dreams. Here it goes:
Worst Nightmare: The one where an immortal, relentless being hunted me, trying to kill me. No matter where I went or what I did, this demon was inexorable drawn to me. It knew where I went and I couldn’t shake it. I knew that if the demon touched me, it would burrow its way into my chest and make my heart into an egg for its millions of babies, to soon burst out of my chest and destroy the world. The demon? A Worm. But what a worm! Nothing could kill it! (Did I mention that I have a small phobia of worms? I don’t mind snakes or spiders but worms *read anything slimy, segmented, or having more than 4 legs* creeps me the fuck out) In the dream I knew, that no matter what I did, where I went, I would never be safe because sooner or later, the Worm would find me.
Best or Favorite Dream: The one where the cyborg is hunting me and my friend and we devise this intricate plan to go to City Hall, get the blueprints for my house, find the gas line, lure the cyborg into the house, light the gas line and blow both my house up and the cyborg. Um…you know, in the dream, it made perfect sense and was the coolest Idea EVER! But before we could get to the place in City hall with all the records, the cyborg caught up to us in the elevator. I woke up as the thing revealed the long, sickle-shaped knife it had underneath it’s coat. Sounds like a nightmare but it seemed SO COOL! Like a videogame that I ALMOST won but took a wrong turn at…I never had that dream again but I still remember it like it had happened last night…
But why did I want to blow up MY house? Huh…
Reoccurring Dream: There is a carnival that I travel to in my dreams every couple of years It has the strongest scents of popcorn and fireworks, autumn and wind. Each time I come, things have changed, and the woman who runs the ticket booth knows everyone by name and knows that time has passed. The rides in the carnival are interesting if not spectacular but something always happens that I find particularly resonant, like the time I saw myself on several monitors. In the monitors I took my own life a I was being pursued by some gangsters. I later had that dream. So a premonition of a dream within a dream, I suppose. I wonder around the place, talk to some people I haven’t seen since last I was there, and then, as dusk approaches, the park closes down, everybody files out, and the lady at the booth winks and smiles at me and says, ‘See you next time Benticore’. I think its about time to revisit the carnival.
So. If you wouldn’t mind helping me out, write out your dreams for all to see. Or email em to me, if you wish. I don’t care how strange or mundane, just as long as they’re yours. Thanks in advance and have a great weekend.
Thursday, September 21, 2006
I’ve been meaning to post a…um….meaningful blog here for awhile, but those pesky constraints of the space-time continuum (You know, no time travel, no 36 hour days, things of that sort) have made blogging a bit more difficult as of late. The spirit was willing, the flesh was willing, but reality was weak. It’s hard to get used to the structural integrity flaws of our reality, and sometimes it really fucking chafes, but I’m dealing with it. Sort of. I mean…I don’t try to talk to my hallucinations anymore. I just look the otherway, and sing songs to myself while they implore me to save the Monkey God Kifu and his Rod of Greasing Justice (Not Greasy, but Greasing, as in it’s function is to grease OTHER things…don’t ask) and such. Not THIS boy, firmly rooted in his comfortable, yet flimsy reality. I don’t need the distractions. Why? Glad you asked. I wrote a song about it…like to here it? Here it go…
I’ve been the painting fool this week, doing a number on our forlorn and forgotten stairwell, to adorn it in the most glorious of colors: mustard yellow. It looks much better than it sounds though, and it shines with a warm, sunset glow, that reminds me that no matter how much I try to deny it, the Monkey God Kifu awaits his champion and…
AH DAMMIT! STUPID MONKEY GOD!
Anyway…the wall looks nice. I painted it…it glows. Still gotta paint the baseboards white, and try not to splatter paint in my eyes…again…
After the stairwell, I’ll take my +2 Brush of Painting (NERD ALERT!) to the Foyer, and then the dining room. Have to finish it all by Friday. Why? Well, because the illustrious Daimushi has returned to the good old US of A for a week, and we’re hosting a mega party on Saturday. But since we’ve um…invited a whole bunch of hungry, dirty people to our house, we (read everybody else) thought it would be a good idea to expand the shindig to both floors.
But aren’t you remodeling upstairs right now, Benticore? Isn’t it filled with the paraphernalia of DIY home remodeling? Why yes, gentle reader. Yes it is. So I gotta get on the good foot, so to speak, and get all the stuff done. A man’s work aint never done…But Wait! There’s More!
So I’v given the first 1/3 of Lion and Spear to my loving, darling wife to read. Ahem. I don’t know what else to say. I usually don’t like other people reading my work when its unfinished, especially as unfinished as it is right now, but she asked me, and then I, in a moment of terrifying clarity, asked her to read it for me, knowing that a) it’s a rough-rough draft with lots of things (characters, plot, title, language, little stuff like that) still up in the air. So she’s reading it right now and I’m trying, trying, Trying not to bug her about it with thousands of questions about what she thinks. And THAT is hard. I’m a meddler. I meddle. I wasn’t able to cook properly until I leaned to control my meddlesome ways enough to let something sit in whatever oily substance it might be cooking in without poking and prodding it like a dinosaur egg. I’ve burned water because I kept watching the pot…that damn water never boiled but it sure did burn up! But I digress.
So she’s got my fledgling novel in her strong, womanly hands and I’m both exhilarated and scared shitless. I desperately want the novel to be good, the idea to resonate in others as much as it does in me, and that the writing not hold the ideas and the images back. But I’m a long ways away. That’s fine with me; writing is a long process and the people who think it’s easy are either crazy or have never really done it before. But I also have a tendency to belittle my own efforts. Hence the Evil Twin. When it comes to my own works, I’m probably my own worst critic. I can be harsh. Cruel and merciless even. Sometimes Kifu hides his face in shame when I get started on how much SUCK I can incorporate into a single paragraph. I’m normally not like that at all. But my evil twin, my darkside, boy, that motherfucker is an ASSHOLE! But just to me! Everybody else cant really tell us apart.
But Raquita can. She hates the Evil twin as much as I do and she calls him on his shit, every time, without fail. So I’ve had to bottle the twin. So…not only do I not get to pepper my wife with questions at 500 QPM (Questions per minute) but I ALSO have to keep my snarky, self-depreciating comments to myself. Now THAT is a hard task. Hard, but I’ll not shirk from it. The bottom line is this; the novel, it aint great right now, but its very rough, and it needs polish and help. I think it can be good. It might even be better than good. But I can’t give up now. And I won’t The Crystal Kingdom of Ghorivaan needs me. Take THAT evil twin!
*High-fives Kifu, the Monkey God*
*Cries in corner*
Welcome to the
Let me let you in on a little secret; I love conspiracy theories. Love em. The stranger the better. JFK killed by a penguin assassin on loan to the CIA because of Kennedy’s Anti-Penguin rhetoric? Great! Aliens landing on the moon to set up alien fast food franchises serving human burgers? Awesome! I loved the Illuminatus! Trilogy and highly recommend the book to anybody who has the intestinal fortitude to wade through it. But I digress.
A good friend of mine recently started working for Starbucks and he noticed, during his training, some mention of their logo, as a siren. He asked what the origin of the logo was and nobody could rightly tell him, so he asked our resident sleuth Gikinmaro to take up the case, and take it up he did. Gikinmaro eventually found a post that goes in depth into explaining all interesting and, frankly, creepy images and ideas that are found not only in the Starbucks Logo, but in the Name itself. IF you’ve got like 10 minutes, I HIGHLY HIGHLY suggest you read this before you order that half calf mocha latte.
That’s it for now. I’ve got to prepare for this party tonight so I’ve got lots of work to do. Take care of yourselves and each other and don’t forget to spay and neuter your pets.
Monday, September 11, 2006
Absolute Joy in a jar…or in this case, 4.8mb
I have found the secret to happiness.
Not the secrets of life eternal (who’d want to live forever? That’s why I always though vampirism was the worst of curses. Everything changes, but you stay the same, and the world grows more alien around you)
Not the secret even to eternal happiness.
Probably not even the secret to Your Happiness.
There is something sublime in the chorus, the melodic chant that makes me grin from ear to ear like I’ve just gotten out of school for the summer, my grades are good, and I’ve got friends coming over for a night of video games and soda and other nerdly delights that does my heart good.
I can (and most likely will) be humming the theme song to the Price is Right, for the rest of the day. Can’t you hear it?
Bada bada bu-dada bu-dada
Badah badah badah bedah-dah-dah
(Repeat ad nauseous)
For the love of all that is right in the world of aural pleasure, I can hear it! I can FEEL it! I’ve found MY happy, in a small downloaded file that pumps musical pleasure into my ear at 192kbps. For me, today is a beautiful day. I hope yours is as blessed.
OH Yeah, before I forget…
Remember how I went on this long rant about the lack of Black Super Villains (BSVs) and how if I could just get a good, competent, ruthless villain, I’d be happy?
Leave it to Joss Whedon, creator of Buffy, Angel, and the Unforgetable Firefly series to right the wrongs of the universe and make all well and good in the land of make-believe.
Enter Serenity’s Assassin, ‘The Operative’.
Ruthless. Cunning. Faithful. Self-Aware. Dedicated. Powerful.
Yeah. I’d say that’d work as a bad-ass villain. Here’s some dialog from the movie…
The Operative: I'm sorry. If your quarry goes to ground, leave no ground to go to. You should have taken my offer. Or did you think none of this was your fault?
Capt. Malcolm Reynolds: I don't murder children.
The Operative: I do. If I have to.
Capt. Malcolm Reynolds: Why? Do you even know why they sent you?
The Operative: It's not my place to ask. I believe in something greater than myself. A better world. A world without sin.
Capt. Malcolm Reynolds: So me and mine gotta lay down and die... so you can live in your better world?
The Operative: I'm not going to live there. There's no place for me there... any more than there is for you. Malcolm... I'm a monster.What I do is evil. I have no illusions about it, but it must be done.
Sigh…I can rest easy now…
(I know it’s the 5-year anniversary of 9-11. I can’t say anything that hasn’t already been said. Besides, we’re supposed to be in the Pursuit of Happiness. That’s what I’m doing. If I don’t do that, then the terrorists win, right? Right.)
Wednesday, September 06, 2006
Friday, September 01, 2006
HOGWASH! Boulderdash, I say, with great gusto and furious flying spittle!
But it is an old rant, and one that I had thankfully laid to rest, engaging myself in other, gentler pursuits, like The Onion, Joystiq, and Rapebear (Go to the June archives and scroll down to the 'On Follow-up Calls' entry. Just trust me).
But my good friend Gikinmaro had other plans for me. Other plans indeed. You see, my amigo, The Gikin, as he is sometimes fearfully named by those foolish enough to anger him, is an avid collector of comics and graphic novels. This all started when he birthday-gifted me with a copy of Truth: Red, White, and Black, which is the story of how the military perfected the serum that gave Captain America his powers on black soldiers long before they gave it to Steve Roberts. He loved the comic so much and it opened his eyes to the artform in its entirety and how it had grown (mostly) out of its infantile stages of protraying women as bra-busting sex objects and men as tough-as nails, musclebound freaks who get off on violence. Since that day he has been a virtual comic-hound, seeking out the best, the most interesting the most poignant comics that have graced the printed page. And then he shares them with me.
Oh how I enjoy those random late-night visits when he shows up at my doorstep, a handful of comics in one hand, a ridiculously bad horror flick in the other, and a grin on his lips that says 'Oh wait till you see what I got for you THIS week!'
This was how I came upon the wonderful graphic novel 'It's a bird!' by Stephen Seagle, a semi-autobiographical tale in which a young comic artist must come to grips with the task of writing a superman comic, even though he hates superman with all his heart. The story is well crafted, deeply personal and resonates on many different levels. Definately worth the read if you have even a passing interest in comics or superman.
I have since been bitten with the comics bug. The graphic novel bug. I had it when I started reading The Sandman series by Neil Gaiman but it died down again when I didnt have the heart (or the money) to persue any more comics, partly for fear of buying stinkers and burning the damn things on the barbecue grill as kindling.
But today, gentle reader, today was a new day! Something inside me told me to take up the old rant, but this time Do something about it. I Searched for Black Superheroes. Like a wandering fool in search of enlightenment, I asked my question to the Google Priest ontop of the mountain (or in the browser) who brought me without delay to...
The Museum of Black Superheroes.
I hit the muther-trucking GOLD MINE! They're Here! They're all here! Blade! The Green Lantern! War Machine! Even the very first black Marvel Superhero, the subtly named 'Whitewash'! I was overjoyed. I was ecstatic! I clinked on the gallery pictures, which brought up websites of black heros I hadnever heard of!
This lead me to a new site, Urban Style Comics. It is here that my joy waned and my trepidation grew. Dreadlock? Okay, he seems pretty cool. I guess. Son of a God, Blessed with powers beyond mortal reckoning. Dreadlocks. Seems pretty straight forward. But then we get to Jihad-A.D.? Huh? Pharohn? Okay. But then...
Nubian X?? Um...joy and happiness completely replaced by confusion and despair.
But, bless my heart, I kept clicking.
That led me to www.gettosake.com (seriously, thats the name. Click on the link!) another Urban Style Animation. Whats Urban Style? Oh, I guess its city themes and black folks. Cause all us black folks live in the city. What, didnt get the memo? Its around here somewhere...
Well, Gettosake, has all sorts of wonderfully odd superheroes, from the powerful Chocolate Thunder and the enigmatic Johnathan FIERCE!, to the sublime Venus Kinkaid and the artful Soul Sista. I mean, with heroes like these, how can we, as black people, NOT rise up?
But this is what you wanted, isn't it Benticore? Black Superheroes? A place where the african-american hero can thrive and tell tales that matter culturally to you and your kin? Isn't this the genesis of your dream of the eventual and inevitable Black Super Villain? Isn't this your WISH?
I thought so. But now I'm not sure. I know these artists have poured a lot of hard work into their product and I dont mean to make light of their achievements. It's just...well...it's almost a pyrric victory. One of the reasons why I never got into comics as a child was because they seemed so masturbatory in their glorification of impossible male and female forms. And their stories sucked. They just felt like it didnt matter, that it was an in-club thing. The power of the Interweb allows all ideas to have at least a small random audience, if nothing else, and it is in this vast and terrible wasteland that these black heroes are starting to get their due. But I guess this is part of the growing process. Mainstream comics went through it. Indie Comics are going through it. So I guess the Black Super hero has to grow up some too.
Maybe I want too much too soon. Half of me wants the race of these superheroes, and therefore ALL race to not matter. The other part of me wants to have my ethnicity put on stage and glorified for all the world to see. I cant have it both ways. Welcome to being Black in America, Benticore! Glad you could make it...sigh...Maybe its not a bad thing. Maybe these superheroes are the burgeoning mythos of the Urban African American culture, the backbone of myths and legends that african americans are woefully short of thanks to the incalculable power of Slavery to block the past from the present for so many black folks. Maybe one day, my grand daughter will be telling tales of The Negromancer, who brought knowledge and hope to all those who would listen to his music, and how he didnt save the world but he saved peoples lives one day at a time, one song at a time.
I can hope.
I'll keep searching for the gold, keep reaching for the brass ring, and keep an eye out for the things that truly matter, be they the Black Superhero who isn't a cliche, to the Black Villain who has an aspiration towards evil and has the ability to carry out those aspiriations. Once I find them, I'll let you know.
But hey, at least they havent gone the whole Black Sword fighter with the 'avenge my parents' complex who says cool witticisms to his defeated foes, right?
*EDIT* Maybe I spoke too soon...I checked out many of those links and most are dead. Maybe the age of the black superhero has come and gone...maybe its too late for the Urban Style Animation and it's purveyors...maybe...
Oh wait...Nevermind...forgot about Wesley Snipes...Mr. Always-bet-on-black himself.
Well, that's that then.
*Lights himself on fire*
Tuesday, August 29, 2006
Trainer: In America, when our kids don't finish their meals we tell them that there are starving kids in Africa. What do you tell them?
Clients from Kenya: [Silence]
Cafeteria, Hazina Towers, 258 Monrovia Street
via Overheard in the Office, Aug 28, 2006
Monday, August 28, 2006
Hey everybody. How was your weekend? Really? Yeah? Sounds great. Me? Oh I didnt do much...nah...I just
TURNED INTO SUPER FIXIT MAN!
Actually, I wasnt fixit man. I was his alter-ego MR.Break-some-shit. I took up my Sledge of the Titans, and Lo did I go to work. And ye, verily I say unto you, some shit, indeed, got broke.
We went to work on the upstairs bedroom with one bright idea and not alot of thinking. We figured, if we tore down the plaster that was rotting due to the water leakage, we'd be able to....um...what were we doing next honey? Our plan was basically;
- Break down plaster wall.
- Rule the world! *And eat dinner*
My wife was at first shocked, but then her HGTV training kicked in. What do you do with a brick wall in your bedroom? Seal it and leave that bad boy bare! Since she's ALWAYS wanted a bare brick wall in her bedroom because of the character it gives the room, guess who's gonna have some crumbling brick action in his evening plans? Yeah.
My biggest worry is that the brick, upon seeing the polyurethane sealant, will shriek and run and crumble. I have this strange image of me leaning against the wall and somehow pushing Out; the wall crumbling outward, falling two stories and pelting our poor, poor dog like missles from an angry God.
I also made Wontons. I created my own wonton steamer, which consists pie tins, all of which had holes in them, a stock pot, and lid to said stockpot. One I made enough wontons, I placed my contraption (tuna can, pie tin with wontons, tuna can, pie tin with wontons) into the stockpot with a medium amount of water) Cover andof tuna cans (sans tuna) steam. They came out pretty tasty. I also made wonton soup, which was tastier and easier, though I am still proud of my Mcgyver contraption (Thank you Alton Browne). The recipes I used are simplicity itself. Honestly, the most annoying part was folding the wontons.
I was the HIT of the party! *Giggles*
What else...um...listening to a lot of Ninja Tunes, Theivery Corporation, Talvin Singh, and the like. With a little MOP *ANTE UP!* and Ghostface Killer thrown in for a mix.
It's monday and I'm ALREADY done with work this week. I mean, Im not DONE done...Im just DONE.
(Im working on a poem called Ice Refrain but it aint coming easy. It's hard, and brittle; every time I try to grasp it, it shatters in my hands, leaving me cold, wet and frustrated....LIKE ICE! HA! *sobs*)
Thursday, August 24, 2006
Hey. I'm okay.
I mean that. I'm fine. I was in the doldrums. A sort of wretched hive of scum and villainy. And cabbage. But that was then!
This is now!
How do I feel? Apprehensive.
Not in a 'I have a bad feeling about this' Han Solo staring for the first time at the Death-I'll blow your planet the fuck up-Star. But more of a looking at your cup and see the ripples in it coming rhythmically, as something very large stomps through the jungle towards you.
You're hoping for the Mr.I-Love-You-you-love-me Dinosaur.
But you're expecting the shit yourself while you try to run away and remember that stupid thing that they said about some dinos only seeing movement Meat grinder type.
Um...That's not much better is it?
I should be in a great mood. I should be happy that things are going well. But like Cassandra getting a getting a microcomputer up her bum for a colonoscopy, I'm having inner visions. What of? I don't even know. Maybe it's the not knowing that's got me so weirded out.
You know, rereading what I've written, it doesn't sound like I'm in any better mood than I was before does it? I am. I truly am. I think I need a makeout session with my pillow, my blankets, and some sweet sweet darkness. That might help. Oh. And a good lengthy prayer session. Nothing too serious, just me and J-Sizzle, shooting the shit, talking about our peeps, lamenting over the cardinals. Stuff like that. Sometimes you forget the simple stuff.
Anyways, It's Friday, and school is out! I hope you all have great weekends. I, on the other hand, am leaving work at noon to spend some quality time with the Wife. What sexy, sexy adventures we'll have, filled with cupcakes and paint and infrared heating coils, and...
um...I think I've said too much.
Have a great weekend.
(I hope to be THIS content, my paws on my proverbial globe, by the time I leave work. It's good to be the king...or at least, the giant lion gargoyle with the 'I just ate your best warriors and now I'm going to eat you' grin) Either way...
p.s. If you look REAL CLOSE at that Barney in the window, you'll notice he's not carrying flowers in his hand. HA!
Monday, August 21, 2006
For some strange reason this morning, I was hit with a bout of sadness. A melancholy vapor, if you will, a misty vibe of woe that shrouds my face today. Where did it come from? What will make it go away? Why does it smell like cabbage?
Nothing real exciting to report. Oh yeah, Cammy did some projectile upchucking on our way to church sunday. Raquita made Chicken Marsala (my fav! Yum!). I've got some kind of stomach virus that has allowed me to memorize the number of tiles in the bathroom walls and give each one a unique story based on the minute colorations differences and imperfections found therein.
Seriously. Why does my cloud of sad smell like cabbage? What gives?
Anyway. I'm going to try and ingest some caffeine into the body via hot oral injection...um...wait...thats not right. lets try that again. Im going to get a cup of coffee.
Hopefully that will kickstart the day and help me to get rid of the cabbage. I mean sadness.
Its nothing serious so no need to worry. Just a little melancholy. I bet if I hit my foot with a hammer, I'd stop being so woe-is-me. Isnt there a joke where melancholy is a punchline but it refers to a dog eating fruit? Or is that a fruit eating dog? Like the dog is eating the fruit but...nevermind!
Oh! We watched 'The Family Stone' last night. Talk about your study in family awkwardness. The wife and her collection of gal-pals loved it. I thought it was funny but unrealistic since everyone got with who they were supposed to get with right at the end, and then mom dies of cancer. It's almost (and this is grumpy cynical movie-goer Benticore talking here) as if they threw all these awful things at these characters for the sole purpose of allowing all of the ACTORS to demonstrate their emotional range onscreen. We had rage, and incredulity, laughter, sadness, bitter laughter, gleeful sadness, lust, drunkeness, and pot-headedness, among a host of others. Maybe Im just being crotchety today. Thats it...today is my crotchety day, and, unfortunately, it doesnt have all that much to do with my crotch. Maybe thats why Im melancholy? Cabbage in my pants? Huh? Oh, you're still here??
Thursday, August 17, 2006
Black Woman Blues
If she holds that first note
eyes sealed and tomb-heavy
finger kissin’ the mic
we know she’s got the ghost
Fat Bass sighs his strings down
Bone Boss stops tap-tap-tapping
Doc Stick rattles a soft march
and Brass Man pulls the pause.
The cotton skirts and
dirt shirt boys take their pew stools
they know the hymn and the sermon
hands raised and testifyin’
Doc Stick watches her hips
she’s molasses thick and he marks
time as she willow-sways
the old music in her
the lyrics heat-trickle down her neck
and Doc pounds the old heat through
that black skin bass
The dirt shirt boys see the ghost in her
they get to clappin’ and stompin’
they wanna rush the groove
cotton skirt-twirl hike-up dance it,
skip to the end and
sleep on the chorus
She aint lettin go
Fat Bass hums thick and sorghum-low
he lays down that country road home
sausage fingers on gold string biscuits
but she’s got the ghost and
she aint coming home tonight
Brass Man takes her up
they dance that ghost-step
off the road, past the birds
her song is hot peach cobbler on his lips
burns the tongue but he keeps on playin
The cotton skirts dance green angry moves
narrow hips and can’t keep Black Woman’s groove
She takes all the men to that hidden place
they don’t know the way
Black Woman pulls that
out of an old song
hums the final note
lets the dirt shirt boys know they
aint got time to waste before
winter’s coming and black woman’s
on the next song
and the band is packin up
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
With that said, there's something I wanted to get off my chest. Saving money is hard and not hard at the same time. It takes discipline. The thing of it is, learning discipline is the hardest thing, especially when you are forced to do so against your will, and you may or may not have had to have discipline earlier in your life. There are so many shiny things in the ocean, it's so easy to get off-task, off-goal and swallow the brighty, luminous little bobbles that wriggle and sparkle all around you. The American Economy is made of mostly baubles and lures and wriggly things that ultimately, just lead to the hook. But what does that have to do with me? Well, Im just saying that sometimes its easy, and sometimes its hard. Somedays its simplicity itself to say, 'Now, Benticore. Surely you dont need that breakfast sandwhich. If you had had the foresight and the fortitude to wake up a bit earlier, you could have dined on frosted flakes at home, thus saving yourself a bit of money and a lot of cholesterol. Why dont you wait until lunch.' Other days, its like. 'Fuck you, Im hungry. Gimme that!'
But Im the man of the house, the head of my home and family. I have to be the one that sets the tone and example. I have to be the responsible one, no matter how hard it may be to do it. I understand that. I get it. I accept it. It's just that sometimes, its hard. I hate denying the things my family loves, I hate seeing them dissappointed or frustrated with our current lot in life. The only thing that gets me through those sad or angry faces and looks is the thought that, in the long run, we have a chance to be healthy, financially, and every little bit helps. I want to make my family's every little wish come true. But I want to stop the hemorrage of nickels and dimes more. If you're not careful, you'll bleed yourself to death with tiny little cuts. But those cuts add up and soon, if you're not vigilant, you can find that when it comes time to do the BIG Things, implement the Important Plans, there just isnt enough left. THAT is something Im sick and tired of.
So, daddy is taking a stand for economic stamina and fortitude. I'm putting my foot down and Im going to lead my family to a more stable financial future. One step at a time.
*lifts a glass of water* Cheers!
No, not just happy. Right now, I'm Joyous. Its a sort of peaceful contentment that seems to be ebbing and flowing out of me, like some kind of invisible aura or electric field. I feel like if I hugged someone, they'd be happy too. It's strange and tingly and wonderful.
I've also had a cup of coffee. That might be it. But I dont think so.
My mother is feeling better. She called me last night to inquire where I was and how come I hadn't visited her on Monday. We really were exhausted and Cammy was too, so we just ate, put her to bed and rested for a minute. I want to be UP for my mother, so I figured seeing her today would be better. Plus I can bring Cammy, who will no doubt be the hit of the nursing home. I think hearing my mother's voice, strong, and slightly testy as she talked to me last night made me happier than my reptilian male brain knows how to comprehend. So today, I'm just happy. It's a nice feeling.
Because Mos Def is one of my favorite hip-hop stars of all time, and his song Champion Requiem is one of my favorite songs, I wanted to post some lyrics that seemed to speak to me these past couple of weeks. *OH SHIT! Tru3 Magic out in September?* SWEEEEEEEEEET!
I was taught when there's somethin' you can change around
Keep quiet, you got nothin' to complain about
You got work to do, I don't know if that work for you
But thats how Mos work it through
And my work is personal, I'm a workin person
I put in work, I work with purpose
I get it there, on the water, air, the surface
You feel the impact? Niggaz yeah it's workin
Listen God did not make me a fearful person
The only fear I have, Is my failure to adhear his path...
(ps. Did I mention the Mind Bullets? That kill yaks 1000 yards away? Cant stress those enough...)
Monday, August 14, 2006
*Edit: The video is acting wonky on the blog so click the link above for your Dr. Tran fix. Remember, its not meant for kids, no matter how cute the little asian boy seems...um...that didnt come out right...anyway, enjoy!*
(Its not really appropriate for young children or small dogs...just so you know)