You may ask, what is that makes me so optimistic about the internet. Well in the bad old days you went to your local retailer and purchased whatever you needed right there on the spot. And if your local retailer didn't stock what you wanted to buy, well that was just tough noogies.
Oh sure, there would always be this friendly and helpful assistant manager guy and his minion who were always more than willing to go out back and look for whatever your heart desired and special order it if he couldn't find it. But I always imagined that what they were doing out back was falling all over themselves laughing at this dumbass that thinks Walcorp actually gives a shit what his individual needs are because somehow my special orders never actually showed up.
But now with this internet thing I just search for my preferred items and voila, it shows up on my doorstep.
So those special razor blades that are never in stock bingo. That special cologne that the department store refuses to stock, no problem. And my special paper nobody carries anymore, bam 30% cheaper than I used to pay.
I like it! Now or course you have to negotiate the whole shipping and handling charges thing. Shipping costs I understand, but WTF are handling charges.
I'm telling you now, remember you heard it here first, this world wide web thing could be a big honking deal someday.
I am not opposed to helping people. In fact I have spent most of my adult life helping others. And I am training my kids to honor their obligation to reach back and help those who need it. I think the world would be a much better place if everyone did so. But begging in America has taken on a level of arrogance and entitlement that I fear has lead our society to the edge of doom.
I am not talking about the broken souls who need fixing in one way or the other. These sombitches don't seem to have anything wrong with them that 40 hours and a little overtime won't fix. I know it is a tough economy but instead of loitering in front of Micky D's begging for coins why not loiter in front of Home Depot and give the illegals a run for their money.
Anyway, it's been a while since I went to Micky D's for anything but I had occasion to drop in for breakfast recently. Almost instantaneously I recalled why I stopped coming to this particular establishment. Within seconds I am being stalked by numerous BM's. As a general rule I walk with a gait that has a certain purposefulness that usually is enough to ward off all but the most aggressive BM.
And here he comes! "'Cuse me, cuse me brother can I talk to you for a minit."
At this point no response is necessary, but I do give him that hood stare (you know that one of us is fixin to have an asswhuppin look) such that it takes the edge off of his pitch. You can see the look on their faces when they realize "aw shit, I picked the wrong one." But at this point he is already committed and must follow through.
His pitch: he opens his hand to reveal a couple dollar bills and some miscellaneous change. He goes on to explain that he is trying to get enough to have breakfast wherein he lists out the items that he hopes to acquire.
It is at this instant that I begin to fear that America is hopelessly doomed by decadence and entitlement.
I have walked into this establishment with roughly $100 cash in my pocket, another $30 or $40 in cash and coin stuffed into various compartments in my vehicle for parking meters, newspapers, car washes and such, and enough credit card purchasing power in my wallet to fund a brief skirmish with Liechtenstein but I fully intend to eat breakfast on something close to two dollars. Eggmacsomething or the other, a fruit and yogurt parfait and courtesy cup of water, two dollars plus tax. Roughly the amount homeboy has just revealed himself to be in possession of before he approaches me to top off his breakfast wish list. Never mind that I am fully aware that brother man intends to spend my hard earned cash at the liquor store across the street, let's just get past that for now.
I have a job, in fact I have several, but I have absolutely no qualms about workin with the dollar menu. What is it that makes homeboy think it is alright to beg for more than the bare minimum (begging up, so to speak) because the dollar menu is beneath his dignity and ain't what he wants to eat for breakfast. But sir you do realize you are begging. I know that this is America, but very few are able to beg their way to the top. Begging is generally thought of as an entry level activity and that means dollar menu.
Not having your preferred breakfast delicacies is a real bummer. But if it is any consolation this ain't what I want for breakfast either. My personal breakfast of choice might include something like an egg white omelet with grated mozzarella cheese, peppers, onions, a generous sprinkling of salty capers with a side of crispy bacon and a bowl of seasonal fruit and a glass of fresh squeezed orange juice to wash it down.
Sadly, none of that is on the dollar menu. But I am on my way somewhere that might offer us both the opportunity to aspire to that breakfast.
Its called a job. Catch a clue brotha and get one yourself.
One time spouse and collaborator of Max Roach,she was considered a vixen in her film studio days. As she aged her music just seemed to get better as the maturity of a life well lived was reflected in the smokey resonant timbre of her vocals.
One of the things I really wanted to do in this life was to see Abbey Lincoln perform live. That goal came within a hundred miles or so of happening five or ten years ago. But alas, God gives us free will, and sometimes we simply choose wrong.
Actually, I just went to the closest thing to home that I could find. But I never really found home even though I searched long and hard for it. There were times and places that were familiar and comfortable. At the same time those places were unfamiliar and uncomfortable. There was never any place that ever felt like I really truly belonged. I always molded myself into where I found myself. But like Neo and the matrix it felt just a little off kilter, not quite right.
With enough distraction you convince yourself that everything is alright. But it isn't, and deep inside you know it. But what can you do about it. Eventually you stop trying to convince yourself that all is well, but what then. Do you allow yourself to just float away, unbound by the constraints of time or space. Or do you hold to something, anything that is real, as you perceive reality to be. But perhaps that is insanity too. Maybe if I just sit quietly no one will notice and everything will turn out for the best.
The music begins and compels you to chase that song until it drives you nuts, again. If it stops you find yourself spending every waking moment trying to find it. With all of life's doubts the one thing that you are certain of is that the only thing that ever has, or ever will matter is that song.
It taunts you at odd times and places. Sometimes fully orchestrated with complex arrangements. Other times simply bits of harmony and melody. If I dance to its rhythms will it bring me closer to it. Or would everyone else in the room think me crazy. Can they not hear it? Perhaps they hear it too but are also afraid to acknowledge it. Maybe they will join me in dance and song if I could just muster the courage to lead the way to free us all from the constraints of propriety. Or maybe they would just laugh and pity the wretched soul that dances to a song no one else hears.
No, no its better to ignore the music and hope it will leave my being so I can be normal. Just like everybody else. A white picket fence, 2.5 kids and a dog. That's me just a regular person with a regular life that doesn't hear anything that everybody else doesn't hear.
I fancy myself a connoisseur of television commercials.
Mostly it is a bunch of worthless crap that fails to move or entertain the target audience. After spending a kings ransom to produce and broadcast them, you would be surprised at the number of commercials that fail to even mention the product or location.