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i recently read an article about how there are more PhDs on welfare than ever before. Ain’t that something? More than two decades in school only to be a broke ass. Oh, excuse me, Doctor Broke Ass.

In some ways it makes sense.  i mean, a PhD provides limited practical skills beyond (possibly) being able add up the change in someone’s purse very fast. But it’s bigger than that. There was a time (i’m told) when an education granted you a bright and secure future.  A good old BS could do that for you (which, apparently, is exactly what it has become). Then they were saying that a Master’s was the new Bachelor’s.  Now a proper Playa Hater Degree puts you in the same line as that Boogie Monster of a Welfare Queen America is so afraid of.

Will Dr. Broke Ass become new the face of American poverty? more…

Posted – September 20th, 2012
under Life Talk
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Maury is a show riddled with entertainment value.  Honestly, it never gets old!  Not ever.  It’s not always so funny when Maury turns to real life, though.  i’ve watched friends and associates make some terrible decisions that have altered their entire lives.  Whenever that happens, it always gets me to thinking about how one decision can truly change ev-er-y-thang.  May i illustrate?

clearly this dude has made a few bad choices...

Summer 2002.  A young lad fresh out of high school found himself working in downtown Newark, trying to stack some paper before heading off to college.  i was grown, waking up early, getting dressed, boarding the train with an empty suitcase, and heading to the office.  Life was good.

It was made even better when one afternoon in Penn Station while awaiting the train home i saw this cinnamon strudel of a sister some ways down the platform.  i made my way towards her and was delighted to discover that she looked as good up close as she did from afar.  Aiight!  Let’s play this cool. more…

Posted – September 18th, 2012
under A Daggon Shame
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Whaaaat?  That Spring Chicken be bustin Houdini moves!…or maybe Whodini moves?  Not cool, Ice Cold.

i know, i know.  But see what had happened was i was doin hard time in the coop, hittin pushups and tending to responsibilities.  Believe me though, i was thinking about you hard and wanting to share some of the many things that have gone down.  Seems like the whole world done changed.  Lil’ Kim turned Asian.  Drake is tryna bring folks back from dead (this guy!).  A robot is running for president. Then, of course, there’s all the things that happened in my day to day.  Lord, i got a story to tell!

Anyway, all of this is to say that i missed you and i’m back and feelin better than ever and i hope you’ll take me back. i’ma tell you know, i ain’t too proud to beg, so if i gotta take it here, i will. Got some big ideas, big plans, and even bigger lies stories. Ya’ll still rocking with me?


Posted – February 24th, 2012
under Life Talk
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Soooo, admittedly, my consistency as of late has been a bit…questionable.  Like, if i were a rapid transit system, i would cause my city to not be in some check-out counter magazine boasting about the top 50 cities to live in.  What?  i been caught up on some life ish.

It happens.

Anyway, in today’s news, i came across this number that i wanted to share:

Hilarious, no?  And yet oh so true, yo.  The first thing it made me think of was conversations i used to have with my brother back when we found out Shaq was from Newark, the real hood located a few municipalities over from my fake hood.

What the hell could a man that size do besides play basketball?  He damn sure can’t be no acrobat.  Could you imagine him workin at McDonald’s or something?  His big ass would probably be as good at flippin burgers as he is at free throws.  i’m just glad the brother has found his calling.

Anyway, what other folks could only be famous?  Let me know.


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So far, my brother has been picking some pretty good Back When Wednesday jams. When he asked me to give my input on a song that affected me, I jumped on the chance. I’m 5 years older than him so the songs that were shaping my adolescence might not particularly appeal to him or have the same meaning. I thought about High Five or New Edition (you older heads know you can relate). Then I decided to go with a song that had meaning to me. A song that had a history with me growing up. I picked “Nuthin’ But A G’ Thang” by Dr. Dre featuring Snoop Dogg (back before the weed obliterated his ability to rhyme).

Now, don’t get it twisted I’m a G that’s from the old school that’s so cool, or at least I tell myself, but this song had a different meaning.

I wasn’t allowed to listen to anything with that forbidden “Parental Advisory Explicit Lyrics” tag in the bottom right hand corner of the tape. My mom was trippin’ because I was 13, and that is a grown ass man as far as I’m concerned. Anyway, since my mom didn’t approve, I had to discreetly listen to this with my walkman over and over until I broke the tape inside the cassette. I knew every lyric, bass, & snare to the Chronic album and felt I finally understood the west coast.  This tape (not CD, not MP3) did a lot to bring attention to the Westside and give them their spark that N.W.A. originally started.

Anyway, it is a universal great jam and you know you all loved it.

That raises another interesting point though. With all the use of foul language and bad grammar on top of corny sexual innuendos what does that say about my generation? What happens when my grandkids want to hear the music I grew up on? Not the smooth group vocals of the Temptations or the soulful refrains of a James Brown song. No, I am the first generation of rap and can only offer the references to bitches by “Snoop Doggy Dog” and the ability to get your riot on in Compton. There is a lot of good in hip hop, but this helped make the darker side a little more prominent. Despite all that, it is a hell of a song and an even better time in the history of hip-hop. Enjoy.

-J Fowl

Posted – February 20th, 2012
under Love, Lust, and Videotape
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Be back Wednesday.

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Today is February 17th, 2012 and my “Meriod” seems to be a few days early. I am getting better at realizing the signs and today I have noticed the beginning of my emotional rollercoaster. It started at college (where I am a 32 year old senior) and has become very prevalent that I am bugging out. Let’s backtrack a little though and let me explain one of my weak spots while I am “Men-strating”.

If you read my earlier post you can see that there are a few anomalies that affect my “Meriod.”  And I quote, “I suddenly feel bad for short men (not midgets though, they understand what they are up against), overweight pre-teens, and any other misfit to society.” I don’t know what my sensitivity is to these things but a problem definitely exists. I am 5’10 and ¾ (we all know you round up so I am technically 5’11). Yet I have a soft spot in my heart for any short man. Now I don’t judge and I don’t base my thoughts or opinions on a man’s size, yet many females do. They say things like “Girl he’s cute, but I can’t mess with him.  He’s only 5’4.” Ask Kevin Hart.  He based his whole career around this fact.

Also, you have two types of short men. There is the one who compensates too much by telling you things like, “They call me Pit-bull because I go crazy on anyone disrespecting me” while his legs swing from the barstool. Then there is the unconfident introvert. It has to be hard in society. I hide my thinning hair with a hat. Women hide blemishes with make-up. A short man hides his height deficiency with…humor, ego, a pained smirk revealing that he noticed you sizing hum and have acknowledged his new-found position as a placated threat.

Something primitive in men makes us have a good old modern day chest beating when new social situations arise. Like dogs peeing on a certain tree we like to mark our territory. Example: someone new works at your significant other’s job. You hear a couple stories and you think “I don’t like this charming clever dude. I gotta see this guy.”  In your mind you picture Brad Pitt mixed with Stringer Bell. You see dude and he is 5’3 with a big ass forehead.

First thought: “I’ll pick his little ass up if he tries something.”  Now regardless of how I can empathize with him and his inability to ride all the rides at Six Flags, I still have that initial thought. I could only imagine what women think. Imagine a grown ass man picking up another grown man. Not even slamming him or shaking him, just picking him up. That is the ultimate non-verbal insult. It is worse than punching or even worse than smacking him open hand. Their legs kicking like their riding an invisible, stationary bike or treading water, the whole time yelling some little kid shit like “Quit it” or “Put me down.”

Take a second to think of that in your mind’s eye.  I’ll wait…………….. more…

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i know, i know, not too much of a back when (and maybe even a bit of shameless self-promotion), but it’s a good song.  Sometimes the day wears you down and all you want is to find yourself enwrapped in some chocolate legs.

What else is there to say?


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The big news of the weekend, of course, was that Whitney Houston died.  When i heard, i, like any good citizen of the 21st century, ran to Facebook to confirm.  In the time since, my newsfeed has been bombarded with Whitney’s videos, news articles, and “we miss and love yous.”

It’s all brought me to notice a very interesting something.

For the past (at least) 15 years, Whitney has been everyone’s favorite crackhead…the kind you hope can recover, but you know can’t.  i caught New Edition at Essence last year and everyone was saying how good Bobby looked.  “If only Whitney could pull herself together.”

Remember the Diane Sawyer interview, where she was like “i make too much money to smoke crack”?  She definitely gave us mad fodder for the cannon of inappropriate jokes.  It’s true.

But now she’s dead and ain’t nothing funny no more.  No one is laughing.  Over night, she has gone from despicable crackhead to tragic hero whose genius was snuffed out by substance abuse.

What does that say about us?

It just seems to me that we value people more in death than we do in life.  i’m sure she could have used those “we will love you forevers” more 10 years ago than she can now.  But we were too busy commenting on her crackhead stagger. more…

Posted – February 10th, 2012
under A Daggon Shame
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Line me up, dawg.

A few weeks ago, i posted something about the past coming back or the present trying to move to the past to avoid the future or something like that.  It wasn’t deep.

But in it, i mentioned the true sign of the Armageddon: the return of the Jheri Curl.

i have spent a lot of time thinking about this.  A lot of time concerned that it may come to pass.  Was there any hairstyle more abominable?  And from what i’m told, the process was just a great ordeal.

i am fortunate enough to have grown up on the tail-end of this phenomenon.  My era was characterized by the S-curl, which, if we’re being honest with ourselves, was really just the Jheri Curl’s little brother.

The S-curl: saving grace of C-string Black actors all throughout the 90s.

When i was in high school, my sights were on an afro, not an S-curl.  i was tryna be more H. Rap Brown than Ginuwine.  So i started growing my hair out. more…