Category Archives: life & times

The Rational Post – SLANG HUGH – “When You Are Hiding and Doom LOOMS”

“I’m The One Who’s Riding, When You Hiding & Doom LOOMS” – Slang Hugh

The hottest trend on the social media, the GTA anyway, is the now infamous Loom!

Now while I see a lot of negativity going around about this thing, I’d like to focus on the positives I see.  I will admit to not knowing all the ins and outs of it.  And not really being interested in the facts.   I am one of those who said “fuck it, it’s only $135” and threw my financial fedora in the ring.   Did I hesitate?  Of course!! I meant it is still $135!! Upon originally hearing about it, I thought “this sounds like a good thing. But let me sit back and see how it goes first.”  What’s the good side that I saw?  The possibility of regular people being able to help each other step up a notch financially.  I mean we aren’t talking about millions here, I know but to some of us lowly middle and lower class folks a multiply by 10 come up is like winning the lottery!  After all its only $135 right?  And while that isn’t a lot of money to me it’s a good amount to some.  And to those that look at a $135 like it’s a $1000, you know those people who say things like “Fam, I don’t care if its $5 fam!! I want my loot back now now, like right now bro!!” I will say this don’t risk what you can’t afford.  A phrase of common sense no, but WhatsApp groups, FB posts and IG is littered with message of the opposite.  Disgruntled investors who feel that their guaranteed gamble was a scam and a farce.  So much so that it seems we need to hand out dictionaries with the word INVESTMENT highlighted for a better understanding.

I’m convinced many of us don’t’ understand what it means to “risk” your money.  Here’s what I see as the bad side, and it doesn’t have much to do with the loom itself, but with the people running it. The Loom became too big too fast.  It was the victim of trendy marketing.  The honest Ed salesman pitches of “flipping” your money fast seem to pop up overnight.  Not seem.  DID!  Everyone asking everyone to join THEIR loom.  I myself was asked at least 10 times in the last 4 days.  For those interested it was way too many options to actually choose one.  Imagine you’re walking down the street and suddenly have a craving for a patty and coca bread, and out of nowhere 5 different patty shops pop up on the sidewalk, each advertising the best patty in the world.  You would want to try them all but unfortunately there are no samples and you only have a $1.35 to work with.  How do you choose? And for not interested in this was a HUGE turn off.  Nothing worse than being offered something you don’t want 50 times in a row!!  This also had another effect that I believe put the yet undetermined nail in the Loom coffin.  It exhausted the market share within days!  There was no time for the observers to turn into potential investors.  Those of us who watched at first were quickly given reasons not to join up bad people whose looms had dried up.   It began to look and smell like a get rich quick scheme, the ones we all fear becoming a victim of.  The type that we all hang up the phone on when being told “you are a winner of a million dollars and all you have to do it give me a $1000 to get it.  Any of these types of things where you have to bring another person in to get any real money has limit on the amount of people you can fool…I mean convince.  Whether Amway, or Primerica, they all have a certain type of person that are attracted to them.  Only difference is they are selling products and more importantly they are not trendy.   So even though we view Primerica as not cool it’s still around, and is probably still doing well.  The reason for that is because they sell you an idea of exclusivity, they make you believe that you are joining something that only special people are a part of.  Only the brave ones are willing to risk it, and if you join you’re sure brave!!  It’s not just a tug at your pocket book and the lack of colored paper inside.  They pull at your very emotion and desire to be a better person.  The loomers weren’t able to capitalize on that type of magic.

I don’t know if this is true but I saw one person post saying that the loom archetype has been in other communities for decades.  And is used as a form of community financial loan, in which patrons put money in knowing that they will get back enough money to start their own business, and once said business is up in running they are expected to put back into the loom, in order to keep it going.  If this is a true story, if even it is loosely based on one, I have to say we may have dropped the ball on this.  We may have dropped the money ball!

– SLANG HUGH

SLANG HUGH can be found on instagram @slanghugh

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THE RATIONAL POST – SLANG HUGH – “Nas’ 8th Album / The 14th Letter”

“Nas’ 8th Album / the 14th Letter”

Chink.  Kike. Wetback.  Faggot.  Paki. Even Bitch!  And the list of derogatory and insulting titles goes on.   These words used for hate, harm and hurt.  All words with a vast and horrid history behind their “definitions”.  All words created by evil, racist, ignorant, misogynists, with nothing but ill intent in their hearts.  All of these words are widely considered forbidden.  Taboos that should have long been tossed in a time capsule and buried.  Something that has been long forgotten, only remembered in conversation about history and how far we have come as human beings from the time of that archaic way to speak.   And yet they still exist and are still used by many.  Maybe not so much publicly, but definitely uttered under breaths, in cars, and directed at someone with a different color skin, or appearance than you.  Who can fathom such words being deemed as everyday vernacular, and even worse, as cool.  But then there is the N word.  Yes, yes the infamous and perhaps famous N word.  Nigger.  A word that, as a black man is even hard to type or write, never mind to utter.  Yet it seems to be the one derogatory term that has been able to circumvent the simple security of probably the most  basic of human rights.  The right to not be called offensive names based on who you are, or what you look like. And yet it’s nigger that has seemed to obtain this level of social acceptance by some.  My question is why? Why has it, the most historically negative title, become so desirable to use in everyday vernacular?

I guess Hip hop music shares some of the blame.   With its growth in popularity came a rise in the normalcy applied to some of the culturally specific language.   Especially the negative ones, bitch, hoe, and of course Nigger.  A genre born from the very streets that exemplify what oppression is in North America.  Ironically, this art form, that is largely responsible for giving upper class white Americans a view into the world of poverty, racism and subjugation, is now also responsible for giving the green light to anyone who feels “black enough” to use the N word.  I guess, by extension, we could just point our judgemental fingers at the very same people the word was created to make victims of.  Black People.  A word that once left a bee swarm sized sting, in the wake of its pronunciation, has been reclaimed by its victims, as a term of endearment.  Jay-Z made this perspective, a worldwide announcement when he told Oprah that “we give words power” He explained, “We took a word that was very hurtful and turned it into a term of endearment.”  Even I must admit there is brilliance in this way of thinking.  In theory.  However, in practice it’s the equivalent to a rape victim greeting the members of their support group with “what up Rapes!!??!!” Somehow it doesn’t have the same ring of genius anymore huh?  Then to reinforce this idea, is what I like to call The Black Millennials theory.  Yes the same generation that is aggressively trying to destroy everything their parents and aunts and uncles grew up believing.  Everything from gender titles to the flat earthers, it is all under reconstruction.  And the N word is not exempt.  Another rapper Kendrick Lamar recently put another spin on the usage, on his album To Pimp a Butterfly where he said in a preacher like voice “N-E-G-U-S, definition: royalty, king, royalty.  Wait listen, N-E-G-U-S description: black ruler,” at the end of the live version of “i”.  Retitling the Nigger as Negus which refers to a brand of African royalty.  When asked by HipHopDX if he was trying to reclaim the N word, he responded with, “We’ve been trying to do it,” he says. “It still never translates and is appeasing to the ear. This is a start and that was the purpose for it… It’s been under our nose for years, but we all are kings at the end of the day.”  Again, brilliant in theory!!  Who am I to criticize the idea of changing an expression of pain into a term that refers to greatness?  But again the practice of this notion is flawed. Black boys and girls are not calling each other nigger with the word King and Queen in their subconscious. The intent maybe positive, but if I as a rapist, was in love with my victim, does that make the way I chose to express any less sickening?!?  I can appreciate the attempts that these 2 theories are making toward change, but I remain very unsure that the new definition will outlast the old.  In fact I’d go further and say that many of these advocates for saying the word, are still upset by any non-black person uttering the same phrase.  Indifferent of whether or not it’s meant as an insult or an acknowledgment of an ally, most blacks will not accept someone outside the community calling them a nigger.  Is this a contradiction?  Maybe to some, but not to me.  The world has to realize that it is not the place of an outsider to dictate the actions, rules and laws of those on the inside.   Or simply put, I can call my brother stupid and get away with it, but let someone outside of the family call him stupid, and see what happens!!

And as I often do, I’ll leave you with this story from my childhood….

I was about 6 or 7 years old, when I first had THE WORD, aimed in my direction, with blatant intent to harm.  It stung even before I could comprehend the reason for the pain.   I was shocked by the holder of the weapon.  It didn’t come from a classmate.  No it didn’t come from an adolescent, or a peer who could blame immature ignorance for the unnecessary spew of verbal garbage hurled toward me.  It came from an adult, and was directed not only at me but several of my friends as well.  I have never forgotten that day or that feeling.  And no amount of reclaiming or redefining of the word Nigger will wipe away that memory.

– SLANG HUGH

Slang Hugh can be found on instagram @slanghugh.

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THE RATIONAL POST – SLANG HUGH – ONE BALL ISN’T ENOUGH

Not Enough Balls…

Genius. Albert Einstein. Steve Jobs. Michael Jackson. Michael Jordan. Eccentric, rare and often misunderstood. Often dismissed as crazy.  In my opinion, crazy is a necessity for a genius.  Greatness isn’t forged from used molds.  It’s created with a unique spark, an uncanny ability to look not only recognize the Matrix but find a way to write new code. Make new rules.  Your own rules!
Now trailblazers aren’t responsible for the trees that are chopped down and left in their wake.  Their eyes and efforts are focused on the prize, clearing a new path.  Any damage caused is collateral.  It’s a path to the dream, and if you’re not on the yellow brick road, easing on down with the Dorothy the genius, then maaaan, fawk ya, let the wicked witch have your visionless ass.  Enemies will be made along the way.  Simply because the way one thinks is different from anyone else’s.  One man fits the criteria.  One man may be eligible for the title he has already bestowed upon himself.

Genius. Albert Einstein. Steve Jobs. Michael Jackson. Michael Jordan…. and LaVar Ball? Yes, you read that right LAVAR BALL!!! Is he polarizing? Yes. Is he off putting? Yes. Is he different? Unique?  Creating enemies? Blazing paths?  The answer is simple and it’s not A, B, or C.  It’d D ALL THE ABOVE.  YES!!

Is he a genius? Before I answer that question, let’s examine the man.

A black man in America, who has managed to raise, 3 sons who ALL have full scholarships to a top division 1 university. Not 1. 3! His eldest Lonzo is projected to be top 3 2018 NBA draft pick, after having a very successful year at UCLA.

Let me repeat, A Black Man in America!  The chips are already stacked again him and the bad cards have been dealt before he even sat at the table.  The big boys of the game already are looking at you with the “who are you again?” Face.  Yet Lavar boldly spits in that Face of authority while yelling “I need 2 billion!!”. To Nike. To Adidas. To Reebok. To whomever.

And while we laughed at this man and told him he was crazy.  He smiled and told himself he was a genius…a genius with a plan!! A father with a plan for his sons.  A blueprint for the empire!  Their empire!! Doing the very thing that any father should try to do.  Make a kingdom for their princes to one day rule over.  in the case of the royal Ball brother it’s not a crown they have been passed but a shoe company. Understand this, that $500 shoe – that even I will admit is a bit steep for my lower middle class pockets – is a crown jewel in the cap of King LaVar’s cap.   He has made his first born, the FIRST black athlete, not with his own shoe.  His own shoe Company!

The only draw back to genius is that its not recognized until results are shown. And the Ball family’s genius title rest heavily on the shoulders of its eldest son Lonzo. In the words of Skip Bayless, Lonzo has the target of a tattoo bigger than Lebron James’ “chosen one” emblazoned on his skin. Will he be able to carry that mantle? Will he be able to meet his father’s lofty expectations and predictions? Will he be better than Steph Curry and Lebron? Either way I’m not so sure he has to be THAT good, but he must be DAMN good!! But only time will reveal if the son truly must pay for the sins of the father.

As for the father, I often wonder what our real problem is with LaVar. Is it because he dares to defy the rules? Is it because we in the norm can’t comprehend what goes thru the mind of a mad man aka genius? Is it because we rarely see the image of a black man, demanding respect, commanding power, from those that he may be worthy to challenge, all while building a future for his family that is already making history? The irony is, he may be unworthy in the eyes of John Public, but in his mind and effort he is worthier than us, who dare to criticize. And that makes it clear to me, that there are not enough Balls in the world!

 

Genius. Albert Einstein. Steve Jobs. Michael Jackson. Michael Jordan. Eccentric, rare and often misunderstood. Often dismissed as crazy.  In my opinion, crazy is a necessity for a genius.  Greatness isn’t forged from used molds.  It’s created with a unique spark, an uncanny ability to look not only recognize the Matrix but find a way to write new code. Make new rules.  Your own rules!
Now trailblazers aren’t responsible for the trees that are chopped down and left in their wake.  Their eyes and efforts are focused on the prize, clearing a new path.  Any damage caused is collateral.  It’s a path to the dream, and if you’re not on the yellow brick road, easing on down with the Dorothy the genius, then maaaan, fawk ya, let the wicked witch have your visionless ass.  Enemies will be made along the way.  Simply because the way one thinks is different from anyone else’s.  One man fits the criteria.  One man may be eligible for the title he has already bestowed upon himself.

Genius. Albert Einstein. Steve Jobs. Michael Jackson. Michael Jordan…. and LaVar Ball? Yes, you read that right LAVAR BALL!!! Is he polarizing? Yes. Is he off putting? Yes. Is he different? Unique?  Creating enemies? Blazing paths?  The answer is simple and it’s not A, B, or C.  It’d D ALL THE ABOVE.  YES!!

Is he a genius? Before I answer that question, let’s examine the man.

A black man in America, who has managed to raise, 3 sons who ALL have full scholarships to a top division 1 university. Not 1. 3! His eldest Lonzo is projected to be top 3 2018 NBA draft pick, after having a very successful year at UCLA.

Let me repeat, A Black Man in America!  The chips are already stacked again him and the bad cards have been dealt before he even sat at the table.  The big boys of the game already are looking at you with the “who are you again?” Face.  Yet Lavar boldly spits in that Face of authority while yelling “I need 2 billion!!”. To Nike. To Adidas. To Reebok. To whomever.

And while we laughed at this man and told him he was crazy.  He smiled and told himself he was a genius…a genius with a plan!! A father with a plan for his sons.  A blueprint for the empire!  Their empire!! Doing the very thing that any father should try to do.  Make a kingdom for their princes to one day rule over.  in the case of the royal Ball brother it’s not a crown they have been passed but a shoe company. Understand this, that $500 shoe – that even I will admit is a bit steep for my lower middle class pockets – is a crown jewel in the cap of King LaVar’s cap.   He has made his first born, the FIRST black athlete, not with his own shoe.  His own shoe Company!

The only draw back to genius is that its not recognized until results are shown. And the Ball family’s genius title rest heavily on the shoulders of its eldest son Lonzo. In the words of Skip Bayless, Lonzo has the target of a tattoo bigger than Lebron James’ “chosen one” emblazoned on his skin. Will he be able to carry that mantle? Will he be able to meet his father’s lofty expectations and predictions? Will he be better than Steph Curry and Lebron? Either way I’m not so sure he has to be THAT good, but he must be DAMN good!! But only time will reveal if the son truly must pay for the sins of the father.

As for the father, I often wonder what our real problem is with LaVar. Is it because he dares to defy the rules? Is it because we in the norm can’t comprehend what goes thru the mind of a mad man aka genius? Is it because we rarely see the image of a black man, demanding respect, commanding power, from those that he may be worthy to challenge, all while building a future for his family that is already making history? The irony is, he may be unworthy in the eyes of John Public, but in his mind and effort he is worthier than us, who dare to criticize. And that makes it clear to me, that there are not enough Balls in the world!

– SLANG HUGH

Slang Hugh can be heard as part of the Podcast “The Man Dem” alongside Sir Toks –   and found on instagram @slanghugh 

The Rational Post – “The Gender Adjustment” – SLANG HUGH

International women’s day has just recently passed. And for 24 hours North America expressed its politically correct support of all things of the feminine gender. Insurmountable PDAs all over social media and WhatsApp statuses heralding the great accomplishments of the most beautiful species to ever grace our planet. And deservedly so. It had me thinking about how far women have come in the last few decades or so.

No longer do we look at them to be barefoot and pregnant, in the kitchen, making breakfast burritos and pancakes for hubby and the kids, all while breastfeeding lil junior. Now we expect her to do all of that and hold down a career. At least that what it seems like. It appears that our primitive perspectives on the abilities of women throughout history may have, ironically built us a social and ambitious Voltron. The perfect synergy of independence and responsibility, but is anything really perfect?

While this growth in humanity and equality should be more than applauded, and supported, we must recognize that there is some dry humor within this story of triumph. Or better yet confusion, gender role confusion.

In the rise of women to power, men and women seem to be baffled as to where they fit in each other’s lives. Men not too sure if the man that their father was, is now archaic and often the Neanderthal of this modern gender role mix era.   And women are unsure whether they can fulfill their obligations of job, relationship and children responsibly, while allowing a man to help with any of it. Yes our ladies may have gained a lot of freedom, and independence, but they may have sacrificed love and family to get it.

Women have made the most adjustments, but the juggling also effects the lions in the circus called relationship. We men have become bewildered with our own state. For years we were told to be more sensitive, caring.   Not to try and be so tough, it’s ok to cry etc. Some found it to be a tough transition. Others compromised what was once considered a natural stance to bend in for change.

The pendulum swing hasn’t fully come to a stop. We are stuck in a weird space where buying your woman a beautiful dress, makes you a gentlemen, but asking her where she going while wearing it makes you a pig. In a masculine purgatory of opening doors and respecting independence. While she just wants companionship but not the old fashioned ego that often comes with it. A man to be the head of the household but not the boss of her.

This leaves us in love purgatory, where neither of us can relate enough to make a relationship. A constant tug of war to see who runs things. All I hear about is men and women complaining about not being able to find a good opposite version of themselves to settle down with. Maybe it’s because we don’t’ know whether to “act” like men or women anymore? Maybe it’s because we don’t even know what a man and woman is supposed to act like? Perhaps there’s a middle ground that we are missing? One thing is for sure, we are in a transition period, what I like to call the gender adjustment. And if it’s up to cats like the brother Jaden Smith we will have no use for the word GENDER in the future.

-SLANG HUGH

Slang Hugh can be found on instagram @slanghugh

the RATIONAL POST by SLANG HUGH – “JUSTICE BY NUMBERS”

Picture this. You’re driving along on a warm spring evening, and you get a call from a friend. Your phone is attached to the Bluetooth so you press the answer button on you steering console and say hello. You, enjoying the convo so much that your foot effortlessly presses down on the gas, without you being the wiser. After all you’re just following the flow of traffic, and there’s a car slightly ahead of you, a lane over. And bam it happens, an officer appears out of the Wild Wild West, with the cowboy stance, cocked radar gun, and raised left hand that would command a deaf man to halt. “Shit”! You curse to yourself, “damn it, it is the end of the month, isn’t it?!”

Yea it’s the end of the month. Such a simple phrase, with such a complex foundation, when referring to law and order. It’s the end of the month, and the hunt was on. This was the time of the month where law abiding, everyday drivers, know to skate on thin ice, in the spring, with tank road wheels and tracks. We know that it’s the cop’s last chance to fulfill their offering to the almighty numbers. They must meet their requirements of justice by quota.

Justice by quota huh?   Think about that.

A police man or woman is required to write a certain amount of traffic tickets in a month. They don’t call it a quota of course, although the description of the practice is eerily similar. Justice by the numbers. And this is just for traffic tickets. Simple violations of speeding or driving with only one headlight are enforced largely, not for public safety but because someone has a boss to answer to. And he has a boss that answers to the almighty sum. And I get it, being in law enforcement is a job, and therefore somehow the employees must be held accountable. Yet it seems to me that we have made the mistake of grossly accepting what is, as what is should be.

Law and order have been casted in a Sesame Street like cartoon skit, in which the digits on a paper come alive and belt out a catchy sing a long lesson of how to hit citizens with fines and suspensions.   And I say again, that’s just traffic tickets. If on what we could consider the base level of law enforcement, traffic laws appear to be, then imagine what is done on the higher levels, such as robbery or even murder. Are we to believe that the detectives aren’t told to solve a certain amount of robberies within a certain time frame? Are we to believe that the homicide division has no parameters or time expectations attached to their occupation? That would be as ridiculous as thinking that because the team leader, at the call center you work in, no longer has to take calls, he/ she no longer has to listen to and grade a certain amount of calls.  The jobs and requirements change but both still co-exist. Any job you can think of comes with bosses and quotas to please them.

The big difference between that call center job and being a police person is stress and obligation. The weight of a city’s safety is far more Herculean to lift than Mr. Thompson’s smartphone bill. But the only difference between the traffic cop and the homicide detective is the degree of difficulty. It’s much easier to find a speeder than it is a murderer, unless of course you’re forced to find a guilty culprit in both scenarios. It’s no surprise that prisons are filled with those who claim to be innocent. What is more of a secret, is that many actually are. See the numbers are there to make sure the lazy guy in the call center takes as many calls as the diligent worker. What makes you think that being in the employ of the city or government is any different? Connect the dots. If someone’s pay check and therefore, rent, mortgage, food, clothing, and overall well-being is dependent on them meeting certain numeric ideals set by their superiors, in most cases, that someone will do what it takes to keep their job. And in some cases, that someone will do anything to fulfill their obligations!

I remember an HBO show called The Wire, which I deemed the most realistic cop show ever made. So real that it depicted the members of the police force as quite simply, complex humans. Some felt the call to duty, others simply felt the need of a pay check. And in both cases not all were on a noble journeys to do better for civilian or family. Hierarchal Pressure, mixed with prejudice, and systematic oppression leads to innocence being tarnished by numbers at the hands of officers. If you have a quota and time limit to meet, damn sure the not so empathetic amongst the Police force will grab up the first person that “fits the description”. If you need to keep food on your table, you may not feel right doing it but it’s not farfetched that you may plant a couple grams here and there. And I’m trying to paint a picture of corruption, although it does exist.   I’m speaking of the guy who doesn’t want to harass the teenager on the street, but he knows doing so might give him a better chance at finding something and bolster his arrest record and then result in him moving up in rank eventually, than speaking to the kid and getting to know him, so that he doesn’t have to feel like all cops are enemies tends to become a less desirable option. This leads to a stigma and wide gap between Police and public relations.

I’m a 40 something black male, who’s lived in Toronto and the suburb of Brampton my whole life, never committed a crime, but have never encountered a Policeman in a situation of positivity.   And I’ve been stopped by police for everything from traffic violations to drug trafficking. Of the former I may have been guilty, of the latter never. The system is flawed based on the idea that justice and what’s right can be defined in quantity and not quality. It should never be reduced to how many tickets and suspects can be tallied.

By no means is this a bashing of the brave men and women who put on that uniform every day and literally risk their lives doing a job I’d never even consider. This is about the system in which they operate. And how it operates.   People are not numbers, and their treatment or justice shouldn’t be looked at through a calculator screen. To me the math is simple, but to them it may just be…numbers.

– SLANG HUGH

*SLANG HUGH can be heard alongside TOKS as part of  the podcast “THE MAN DEM”. https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/the-man-dem/id1144116291?mt=2itunes.apple.com  

He can also be found on instagram @slanghugh

THE RATIONAL POST – SLANG HUGH week one – KIDULTHOOD

Perhaps we are too awake to dream.

We have all dreamed as kids. Ambitions of being firemen, joining the police force, or even being a superhero were a natural part of our youthful existence. Some of us simply want a family, to be a mother or a father one day and raise dreamers of our own. These dreams tend to drive us for a great portion of our adolescence. Often growing bigger and stronger than a tree when planted in fertile soil. Immovable, due to that soil being our naïve and young minds. Maybe it’s that in our development years we are still somewhat asleep. I don’t mean literally, although that may be true, because we sleep a lot more as children, which probably contributes to this theory, but figuratively. Our eyes are partially closed to the world at large.

Especially to the negativity, to the idea that some things are impossible. Or that gender, color, race, and economics are obstacles we can’t overcome. We don’t even fathom these to be rules at those ages. I mean I used to tie a bed sheet around my neck and believe I was as strong as Superman and could fly. It was only my parents’ strong Jamaican accent telling me “Stop the foolishness!” that would wake me from my cognizant slumber devoid of reality. We benefit from not really knowing what is expected of us, gain from the lack of practical responsibility, and thrive from simply not knowing that it’s possible to fail.

So we fly, we pretend, we imagine, we play, and we have fun with our lives. To us in those early stages the math is simple, if you want to run, you run! You want to jump, you jump! Oh you’re bored? Go play!

Somewhere along the lines we grow up and the simple addition and subtraction becomes trigonometry. The weed of practicality invades our mental greenhouse and blocks our dream tree from the sun until it not only stops growing but becomes almost non-existent. Whether in school where we are basically taught to defer our dreams for good careers and credit. Or at home, where our parents dreams becomes our own and our will to make them proud make our dreams become more and more lofty and sometimes unattainable. With age and responsibility we lose the fiery enthusiasm. Do you remember what it was like to fall in love with something as a child, or even as a teenager? How much you threw yourself into dancing, or sports, or drawing, or gimp!? I would spend what seemed like hours playing basketball, trying to do the same move I saw on TV the night before. Or literally days perfecting memorizing lyrics I wrote so I could rap them over the phone with my peers.

At the time I didn’t realize it but it was my ambitions, my goals, more accurately my dreams that fueled the vehicle for perfection. It wasn’t work then, it was just doing what felt right, what felt good. Eventually our dreams become similar to our physical flexibility, you stop trying to touch your toes and after a while you can barely even see them without feeling a great strain. And rather than go to the gym we grab another bag of chips and go right back to the couch. And in sets the defeat.

See the cycle? Somewhere someone gave us the idea that if we haven’t achieved certain dreams by a certain age then, quite frankly, you are a failure!! And that is simply a lie! Hence why SO many adults are walking this earth with a black cloud on a string. Carrying around their failures like a pet on a leash, who shits all over the place and not only do you not poop and scoop but you step in it and drown yourself in the crap. This is no way to live, and a sure way to die while still living! Many zombies walk this earth way before Walking Dead was scripted.

Now I’m no expert. In fact I’m writing this from the perspective of a man who has lost his dreams along the way, and I’m currently trying to find them again. And probably like some of you reading this it’s hard to believe that my desires are still attainable. Like many of you I’ve had others give words of encouragement and while I listened, inside I was rolling my eyes eagerly waiting for the conversation to be over, so I can go back to NOT LIVING. Or I’d have excuses that I was convinced were valid reasons ready to fire back in defense. I simply no longer could wrap my mind around how I was going to be an adult and fulfill my childhood ambitions at the same time. I’m starting to realize that the answer to that is in the issue.

Dream as a child and act as an adult.

A child will think of doing something and go and do that very thing immediately, without considering the consequences, but their attention is easily switched when something more enticing comes along. An adult will take their time, plan their steps and act accordingly, provided it suits their needs. You have to find a way to combine the two.

Act on your dream….NOW, while planning for the outcome of success. The math is simpler than we care to believe. The steps which are only three fold to me. Find your dream, prepare for it and then make it reality. You may not have the money to take your model portfolio pictures but you have a camera phone, and a mirror to practice every day until you get the money. You may not have the resources to start a business, but have you asked a store owner how they got started? You may want to lose a few pounds but can’t stop eating that pizza, have you joined a gym yet? We have to stop making excuses for the way we CHOOSE to live and make the CHOICE to LIVE!!

They say life is about the pursuit of happiness, but to me it’s more about the pursuit itself. Happiness comes in progression.

Dare to dream as a child but act as an adult.

“AMERICA” – IAN KAMAU X BIG SPROXX

IAN KAMAU X BIG SPROXX

Timely and potent. “Red lines on a white T, not unlike the nations flag”.

Ian Kamau is (and has been for some time now) an artist of towering voice, vision and thoughtful intelligence. “America” resonates with the soulful anger of sadness. “the anger of a thousand years holds me and never lets me go”.

This is journalism. This is how it feels, for those not consumed by the seething rage of riot, but by the dreadful sense of familiarity of another dead black boy shot full of holes, whose institutionalized killer will not see justice in a land that champions itself as a pillar of the rule of law. This is an anger that will not dissipate when the riots do. This anger haunts us.This anger has been jailed, beaten, shot at… it will not go away.

The Big Sproxx produced “America” moves with a jazzy melancholy, Gil Scott Heron meets M.F. Doom style. A soundtrack for the contemplative moments in  (life)times of unrest.

Big Sproxx is going to make protest politics sexy again in Hip Hop music. It seems a certainty. The driving force behind the Freedom Writers, continues to build a catalogue making revolutionary intelligence sound good.

“America” is the first fruit from the IAN KAMAU X BIG SPROXX project… we look forward to more.

IAN KAMAU  X BIG SPROXX

Click to Download “AMERICA” on bandcamp.com 

(The download is free…but… if you can, please.. pay for it…support the artists that make this music).

KEEP WATCHING THE BOLD PIGEON