Category Archives: That’s life

25

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For my 1990 babies, we’ve either arrived at 25 already or we’re approaching it soon, real soon. 25 is a monumental age and it comes with a lot of expectations. It’s kind of the end of an era in life: the post high-school, early twenties, “We could still fuck around” era. The window of flexibility is closing, but we’re still very much developing and finding ourselves, at least I’am. If you asked me where I’d be at 25, when I was 17, it wouldn’t necessarily be where I’m at. However, back then I wasn’t exactly a realist, I still had the luxury of time and dreamt more than I really planned for the future. I did achieve my bachelors degree this past year and I’ve had a couple of minor accomplishments along the way, but my more fulfilling victories are still in the making. There are still a couple of pivatol aspects of life to figure out but if life is just a manifestation of where your mind is, things are looking promising.

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Though I’m not in the space I’d like to be, career-wise or financially, I still find myself happy as a young man. I’m happy because I can truly say that I have a firm grip on who I’am as a person, I’m comfortable in my flaws and confident in my muscle. One of the biggest strength’s is knowing your weakness. Toxic relationships, non-fulfilling jobs, the college life, and a lot of the love around me, have all brought me closer to myself & has had a heavy hand in building my character. Whether it was depression bouts, insecurity or surrounding myself with bad energy, I’ve gained a true understanding and appreciation for the struggles of my late-teens and early twenties,  because I’m starting to see how it’s all contributing to this slightly dark but beautiful piece of art that I call my life. It’s either your demise or it builds you back, stronger, and I took the latter. I’ve gained faith thanks to the turbulence, which is something I always had a tough time coming to terms with. Having faith in the fact that the challenges I face are nothing more than minor-setbacks and character builders, has led to more patience & understanding, and less unnecessary weight & stress.

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I see the progression of some of the people around me, or those from my past, and it gives me a sense of motivation. Which represents growth for me and a 180 degree turn from the days when someone, my age, doing it bigger than me used to make me feel like lesser of a man. Instead of seeing it as “why isn’t that me”, it’s more of a salute and “see when I get there” mentality that I’ve grown into. It took some time for me to realize that nothing will set you back like constantly comparing yourself to the next man/woman, and thinking of “where you should’ve been in life by this point”. With a lighter head and less traffic in my mind, I’m able to really process jewels from my successful piers and old heads who’ve seen their share of ups and downs.

Opportunity and Career

I still have my darker days, of course, a better perspective can’t prevent that but it can help deal with the once-in-a-blue blues, more productively. In my 24th year, my responsibilities and sudden inconveniences caused money struggles, I’ve lost a couple people, I’ve had my resume denied by some great jobs, but contrary to my past ways, I keep on, keepin’ on because there’s really nothing else you can do. Check-to-check jobs and not attaining my dream opportunity (yet) have made me hungrier and gave me an admiration of life beyond money and status. But in my 25th year, it’s time for me to get this money and put the finishing touches on my vision, letting my potential come to fruition…To my fellow beloved born in the same year Bel Biv Devoe released “Poison”, keep a clear head and find your spot in this big-ass world…

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Sidebar: August 15th is my 25th

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A Conversation with an Instagram “vixen”

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In the era of “Love & Hip Hop”, being famous for nothing is at an all time high. Times are as shallow as ever, and it’s got women too heavily dependant on likes, looks and sponsors for a sense of self-worth. These likes and followers, don’t mean-a-motherfuckin’-thing, that silicone in your ass is bad for your health and that old guy with money is going to bounce on you when he finds a new PYT. The popularity and attention is cool I guess, if you’re into all that, but there’s a saying, “If you’re good at something, never do it for free”. With that said, if you’re good at grabbing attention and you have a growing support base, apply it in a business sense, it’ll go further.

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Hosting parties shouldn’t be a career plan.

But, unfortunately, in the mind-fuck-of-a world that we live in today, it’s considered as an option. There’s not an ounce of hate in my blood, I’d just like to see young women aspire to be more. There’s nothing wrong with gathering a following, hosting parties at different clubs in your city, getting a spot in a Fab video, but it should be more of a vehicle to your destination, rather than the destination itself. Build a brand, not just a hollow following, who are just there to watch you sell your soul for some attention. Don’t just end up a bum whose nice to look at.

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The ironic thing is I hear women speaking less of other women who become strippers, calling them out of their name in all types of forms and fashion, and criticizing them for “setting low bar for women all over”. I say “if you got it, then make money off it” because times ticking, especially if it’s a physical asset. Though some women age like they’re stuck in time, the window of opportunity closes quick for those who find success on the basis of appearance. That’s not to necessarily say they become unattractive, but they get old, not always in age just old to look at as well (I.e. Vida Guerra). When all you have to offer is a fat ass and a nice face, There’s plenty of 18 year females uptown on Dyckman who are going to steal your spotlight by this time next year. That’s just the nature of the vain game, everyone wants the fresh face, so you have to keep yourself relevant in other ways. I say that to say, strippers and instafamous broads advertise the same assets, one of them is just making money off it, while the other one is just getting a couple of parched individuals to follow them. So, whose really the dumb bird?.

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Now, I’m not saying if you’re a popular-attractive-person on IG, go be a stripper, but go find a hustle and don’t get too caught up in the moment. Don’t become too content with anything you can’t put on a resume and don’t let the likes and followers give you a false sense of accomplishment. You can become a brand ambassador for a product or you can model for up-and-coming streetwear/clothing lines and charge them to use your space and popularity. There’s a million ways to use the outlet you have, the only wrong way, is thinking the attention is good enough…

Side bar:Death to silicone, bring the natural women back.

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The Drifter

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We learn from early on, whether it be through institutions such as school or just hanging out in the street, that there is an overpowering desire for most people to fit in. There are crews and circles all throughout our little world, made up of people with similar characteristics, sense of humor, or just generally the same interests. Then, there are the chameleon-like people who seemingly blend into any cipher, these are the drifters. The drifters are at all the gatherings from the underground club scene to a weekend out in Long Island somewhere. This type of person usually adapts well and has the ability to speak many languages depending on the setting. The drifter is on another level of intellect, where they can dumb it down or dress it up linguistically in relevance to the environment. You can imagine that the drifter is very personable, usually one of the more likable and popular people around, but there’s a deep complex and conflict among this esoteric group of people.

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The Complex

The drifter is a drifter for a reason. Though there is a favorable side to being this type of person and that side is easier to see on the surface than any of it’s cons. The less flaunted side of this individual is the side that struggles with their own identity, which is also why they’re seen among so many different types of people and in such a variety of surroundings. Though it may seem like these people just love to be around others, which is partially the case, they are also looking for a purpose, something that they truly belong and relate to. At times, I can enjoy leading the life of a drifter because I like to hang around in different places with different people, just to see the contrast of lifestyles and culture in other boroughs, neighborhoods and circles. Despite that, through all my travels I had my core group of friends, who shared the same taste in music, sports, females and style, which is something that a true drifter is still trying to establish. The irony or the complex in the life of he or she who drifts is that they are loved by so many, but often struggle with loving themselves, because they can’t find themselves. They are constantly trying to find comfort in being uncomfortable. For some drifters, the issue is not so much an identity crisis, as it is their standards and expectations of people. After weeks, months, or sometimes years of trying to truly connect with others, those who drift will eventually get bored with those relationships (or lack there of) and move on to their next endeavor. Their standards are rarely met, not because the bar is set so high but because of their own unique character and interest, which leads to a lot of cut ties and burnt bridges. I’ve seen bouts like this fought from close range. Whether it be family members or friends who left just as quick as they came, I’ve witnessed it and have even had my episodes of drifting when dealing with minor identity crisis’ previously. I’ve tried to keep in touch with distant friends of mine, who go through this, but obviously the communication was loose and it became increasingly tougher to keep up with someone whose life was always changing. But all the best, none the less fam. However, drifters are not loners, they may be distant relatives but they are not the same.

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The Loner Vs The Drifter

As I stated, these two types of people are in the same bloodline but there is a thin line that separates the two of them, which is expectation and acceptance of an identity. Let me explain. The drifter still expects to fit in, still expects to relate to people and not become bored by them, whereas the loner, who maybe evolved from being a drifter, expects zip-zero out of people and couldn’t really give a fuck less what people think of them or who they relate too. There is more of a footing for the loner, they have their identity, though we often attach a negative connotation to being a “loner”, some people are perfectly comfortable with it. The loner has accepted the fact that they are not some type of puzzle piece that eventually will fit perfectly somewhere and are cool with the few they keep at a distance and their own company (or with cats). On the other hand, the drifter is still conflicted, still believes that there is somewhere for them and still battle with certain insecurities. I don’t want to paint the picture of loner being this happily alone individual because some are not, but none the less, they have reached a level of acceptance with their identity that a drifter refuses to settle for.

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The Love Life Of A Drifter

Sometimes the only true love that develops in the life of a drifter, is the love of their ever-changing travels. Just as there is a struggle to relate in friendships and a tendency to become uninterested, the same usually goes for relationships on a romantic level. The drifter has a phobia of opening up and becoming close, because they rarely connect with people on a level deeper than the surface and have doubts seeded in the pit of their subconscious. Though some remain hopeful, hope starts to dwindle with every failed relationship. Those standards that are upheld also cause conflict when seeking that soul mate, often leading to substance-less dating and ultimately boredom (as usual). The uphill battle just gets steeper with every attempt that goes left. Nothing is long term, whether it be friends, “home” or love. The cycle continues…

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Retrospect In The Life of: Fuck it, Just Be Honest

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For relationship’s sake: People, including myself, have underestimated the power of being honest when it comes to our love life. There’s consequences of it, depending on what you may be hiding, but it speaks to your character as a person at the end of the day. If you truly love someone, don’t use that as an excuse NOT to tell them the truth out of fear of them leaving, but use that as your driving force to give them the truth, regardless of  how hurtful it may be. Trial and tribulation has now taught me that one. Keeping an ugly truth from someone in fear of how hurt they may become, is only prolonging the pain, making for a more severe build up, and ultimately a more severe verdict as to how the situation will be handled. Not to say honesty will free you from all of your crimes in love, but out of respect, out of character, and as testament to being a stand up person, you should be honest. People will argue, “Well, if they had respect in the first place, they wouldn’t have done what they did“, which is valid to an extent and is subjective to the individual relationship. This is where we separate mistakes from habits. Mistakes are unavoidable in a life with so much to learn, and you may fuck up more trying not to make a mistake, as opposed to just experiencing the relationship. If you make a mistake beyond the vision of your partner, when you’re not typically the type to snake around, it could’ve been an impulsive or emotional decision as a result of a bad fight (Still no excuse, keep your emotions in check). In this type of scenario, it may not go over lightly but eventually there’s a chance of reconciliation because of your track record. Plus, it’s a known fact that if they have to find out on their own, it strips you of even more credit than the mistake itself, and these things ALWAYS find their way back, that’s just the ways of the universe. Now, habits are untamed mistakes, that just become a way of life. No matter the honesty you may bring forth when admitting to your wrongs, if it’s done habitually, that’s where there is a blatant lack of conscience, and the sincerity of your “Sorry’s”, get put on trial. Every time you have to apologize for an act, the apology loses a little bit of it’s value. When you’re constantly showing evidence of uncontrolled behavior, being honest isn’t the real issue, it’s respect. Anyway, having the ability to be shamelessly honest regarding a mistake is life support to a couple in need. There’s no guarantee that the relationship lives or dies, but there is still hope, because they at least got the confession out of you, which speaks louder than you think.

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For Self: I’m speaking to the people like me on this one, the people who still maintain a conscience. Honesty regarding our relationship not only shows the other person a light in the dark but it also helps us, the offender, as a boyfriend/girlfriend, husband/wife, and just as people in general. In situations where I haven’t been honest, it eats at me, to the point that it reveals itself through my body language. Guilt is one of the most brute forces in our psyche and is as relentless as someone you owe money too. This is one of the self inflicted casualties/consequences of being dishonest about something, where you can’t even hold, kiss, fuck or look your significant other in the eye the same way, deteriorating the quality of the relationship. You’ll end up wishing you told the truth in the first place, after realizing  the guilt and attacks of conscience aren’t worth harboring the devils that you’re keeping from someone who has been there for you, when no one else was. Before you know it, your mind is racing with a mixture of guilt, and even paranoia, as you can’t even fathom the thought of your other half, being just as untruthful as you. “What if they were keeping something from me, how would I deal with it?”, looking at it from the angle of the victim, makes everything a little more clear, and starts to infect your mind, wondering if they’re keeping something away from you just as easily as vice versa. See how this thing spiral’s out of control?. Just hold up your half of the bargain in a relationship, and keep your slate as clean as possible, this makes life a lot easier. Once again, there are a lot of people in today’s world, that this type of backlash doesn’t resonate with, as long as they pull an OJ Simpson and get away with it.  But for the rest of us, just being straight up, even when you’re across the foul line, pays off when you realize that you have absolutely NOTHING to hide. The feeling that there is no dirt to be dug, no lies to be uncovered and no secrets to haunt you, is the closest human-beings will ever feel to being invincible. Yeah, the fear is real when you know you fucked up, but when you keep it hidden you still have to look a person in the face everyday, who genuinely cares about you, that alone will break you down from the inside, out. Even when it’s the hardest thing to do, admit it, out of respect for them, and to free yourself.

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Good people lie too, it isn’t only the blatant whore, scumbags and snakes who will go behind your back and keep things from you. The only thing that separates the two types of people when they’re both lying, is intent. When the scum of society are lying , it’s usually for personal gain, to see how far they could take it, or to take advantage of someone who loves the shit out of them. When a person of better nature tries to cover up dirt, it’s usually out of fear from the backlash. Not justifying it either way, it’s just to draw the line, and show that everyone is capable of keeping a dark secret. Like I wrote earlier, mistakes are unavoidable, but at the same time you can keep them at a minimum by being conscious of your actions, regardless of the weed or liquor in your system (That’s a weak excuse, fam). On another note, when you feel like you’re about to cross that line, just picture them doing the same to you. In the worst case scenario, if you do make a bad decision, the only shot left is to at least be forward about it, whatever happens after that point, happens. It’s not a fun place to be, looking into the face of that person and telling them where you went wrong, but it’s even less fun when they bring it up to you. They say the stupid man never learns, the smart man learns from experience and the smartest man learns from others experiences, with that said, I had to learn this through my own mistakes, hopefully you could live life through me on this one and take my word for it. If you fuck up, own up, simple…

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The Thinker: Part 1: The Curse

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In a fast world, that provokes a living-in-the-moment impulsive lifestyle, being a thinker is a beautiful thing. It allows you to look at the world, and look at decisions in a lot of ways that the majority of people won’t take the time to. Being a thinker is really utilizing the mind for the weapon that it really is, but just like any other weapon, it could be your worst enemy as well. Something as powerful as the mind could be your driving force to success, or the devil in your demise, depending on the way you decide to use it. Somewhere between the pessimist, the realist, and the optimist, the black and the white, is the thinker. We, as thinkers, often live in the gray area of life, the “what ifs”, the “what might be going on”, the symbolism and the not-so-obvious. We’re not easily believers of what seems so black and white in this world, and often take a stance at looking deeper into everything, which once again, could be used to your favor or on the contrary.

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There is a great downfall and dark side to the thinker, who can also become overly analytical, paranoid, lonely and unable to find faith in pretty much anything. Our habit of thinking deep into things may cause us to challenge trust in situations we don’t really have too, or to challenge love, life, death, and religious ideals (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing). What separates just having awareness of the dark realities of the world, and the dark side of thinking, is expectancy. For example, everyone’s aware that someone close to them could back stab them, but they have faith they won’t. Now, through the lens of the negative thinker, they’re waiting for someone to do it. In the same aspect none of us have seen God, but a lot of people have faith that he exists, while the thinker needs their evidence. A thinker will pin logic versus the thought of God, and externalizing all responsibility for good and bad to one being, who no one can prove with more than myth of his/her existence. The bible is about as believable as “The 3 little pigs”, to someone whose trying to apply logic to everything. “Miracles never leave the churches”, Nas once said on “Deja Vu”, which reflects the attitude of a lot of thinkers based in logistics, to whom, the bible is a fairy tale story of morality, at best, just as any other with characters, imagination and plots tied together by an underlying message. Me, personally, I dabble in the world of spirituality, but not religion (that’s a different story). This is just one piece of evidence in the art of challenging as a thinker.

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Being a thinker could also interfere with success, if used the wrong way. In a lot of success stories, there is one big risk someone took, that happened to pay off. A lot of those who prospered, may have actually had the vision to see where it was going, but most were shooting in the dark, most likely in hopeless situations, which require a little less brains and a little more balls. The negative thinker doesn’t take that risk, because of the the odds, and the greater possibility of failure. The more you think into the situation, the more real the negative outcomes become, the more doubt plays a role, as opposed to just shooting the dice. The possibility of failure is always there, but for someone who utilizes to their mind to great extents, the sounds inside your head can be too loud to ignore. The reality is, sometimes you just have to go for it, regardless of the odds. That logic in itself may seem stupid, but sometimes the risk is worth the reward, and all that thinking might not get you anywhere. Other times, the risk of failure isn’t that great, but becomes exaggerated by the thought of it going wrong or over-analyzing. In these situations, the thinkers mind works as a rear view mirror, meaning things seem bigger than they actually are. The thought of failure in this specific sense is an embodiment of all the negative outcomes that people who tend to over-think, will become paranoid about. Death, is also a devil in the mind of the over analytical. The reality of thousands of people dying everyday in a number of ways, mixed with the gray area, “what if” nature of the thinker, can formulate into “If thousands of people die everyday, why can’t it be me today?”. Once again, a harsh reality, but what separates most people from the negative thinkers, is that the thinker will let that reality consume them.

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Trust is also something that can be negatively effected by the nature of the thinker, I’ll take this one from a personal standpoint. Coming up I had numerous amounts of substanceless connections with females, we’d talk, mess around a little, but it would never get passed that. Regardless of how cool they were, how attractive they might have been, I never let it get too far. It wasn’t about insecurity in myself, I was fine with myself, what ran through my head was the number of good-for-nothing girlfriends of other guys, who had tried to move in on me, or pass me their number, and I promised myself I’d never be that guy. I was always observant, which is usually a positive characteristic, but it’s the way my mind processed certain instances and happenings, that interferes with my life sometimes. So fast forward to 2011, I’m 21 and I actually do look passed the negative possibilities (or so I thought), and get in a relationship. I had known her for a while, as good friends, there was always a mutual interest as more than that, but once again, I never let it manifest. I had known her through two of her passed relationships, in which, no matter the circumstances, she never did anything disloyal behind their back, which was intriguing, especially in a world where girls behave just like men in the aspect of infidelity. So I gave it a shot. Though, I got passed stage one of the trust issues, the aspect of 100 percent trusting someone was just not realistic to me. It effected our relationship, it prevented me from fully indulging, or expressing real emotion or thoughts of mine, in fear that one day this whole thing would fall apart and my significant other would use my secrets as a weapon. On the other hand, I wondered why it was worth it to give my all to someone, who MIGHT fuck me over in the end, like so many other partners that seemed promising at first. It led to multiple issues within the relationship, whether it was not giving her credit for being loyal, not being 100 percent in on the relationship and not having faith in the future. All the arguments, tension-filled nights, all caused by over-thinking and seeing something that wasn’t there, that’s the poison. You think you’re ahead of the game, but you’re really stagnating yourself.

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The common thread connecting the cursed thinkers negative relationship with love, trust, success and religion, is a type of distorted logic, that may be a product of turbulence throughout someone’s life and it’s aftermath. As stated earlier, the relationship between the Thinker and religion, may not be a product of “distorted” logic in the thinker, it could also be the “distorted” logic of religious doctrines and teachings, but to the masses, challenging God is still not popular. As far as success, love and trust, the problematic logic could cause for a lot of unnecessary stress in your life. Though it may be based in odds, experiences and your surrounding world, sometimes it really is healthier to say “fuck it”, and not be afraid to live and learn. As a thinker who gets effected by it negatively, you may be labeled delusional, paranoid or down right, crazy. But it still speaks to our potential. Though negative thinkers may have once been optimists who are now jaded due to life’s circumstances, imagine staying positive. For our mind to be powerful enough to shape our behavior, personality and our life in general to the extent it does, we can use it for better too. As a matter of fact, being a positive thinker has actually shown results and reflected itself in people’s lives externally, so it’s really all a matter of how you use it. It’s not about being too observant, or being too aware, it’s the way you process the information and whether you use it going forward, or let it discourage you….To be continued.

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Marriage: The start of a new beginning or the beginning of the end?

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Growing up, I always assumed marriage to be a great plateau in life, the ultimate marker of love. Not only because it’s so often painted as a fairy tale in a lot of mainstream entertainment, but because I saw it from the perspective of my parents. I rarely ever saw my parents fight, they remained affectionate and genuinely seem happy with each other, to this day. But with a sky rocketing rate of infidelity and divorce in the world around me, it became hard to ignore. I’m talking the world that wasn’t so distant from me, my parents were a rarity, even in my own family. Of my 3 uncles, and 4 Aunts, the majority have remarried within my lifetime. To add injury to insult, I’d converse with old heads, particularly late 30s to early 50’s year old men, who did nothing but complain about marriage and glorify their long time affairs or the convenience of hookers. Somewhere along the line, the majority’s distaste with marriage was no longer so taboo to talk about, to the point where people openly speak of walking to the alter in the same realm of walking to the electric chair. Getting married was once depicted as stepping into a vortex of a lifetime bond between you and your soul mate, now-a-days marriage is seen as a jail sentence, an inevitably unhappy joint venture, an Alex Rodriguez contract.

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What was once the highest level of romanticism, now seems to ruin a relationship, more often than it turns into “The Notebook”. I try to decipher where this negative context of marriage really comes from. The majority of the people who complain about being married had a choice, we don’t live in a culture of arranged marriage. Maybe some felt obligated or forced into marriage because of their significant other, a significant other who wanted to fit in with their friends or siblings, who were newlywed. Some people marry out of vulnerability or fear of being forever alone, only to realize they may have been better off choosing the latter. Some should of wore a rubber and maybe they wouldn’t have a bitching girlfriend using their soon-to-be child as a tool of negotiation for a ring. From the sadder end of the spectrum,  some may have genuinely believed they were sharing life with who they wanted to, and became exposed to the realities and routine of marriage or the hidden monster that became of their spouse. Certain men and women are great salesmen before the knot is tied (around your neck), painting themselves as the perfect partner, with an agenda. Once the ink is dry, the ring is on, the honey-moon seed is developing and they’re aware of the power they possess, they are now able to truly release. This is when the dictator, the verbally or sometimes physically abusive, sociopath chooses to show who they really are, how convenient. In the case of a woman being the monster, they may start rationing the box, might use it as a bargaining chip, or eventually may stop putting out all together. Most people in these situations usually aren’t willing to get divorced, due to expenses, a prenup or third parties (children), so they find other outlets. Let the ugliness, affairs, alcohol and misery ensue.

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From another angle, people may have hyped marriage to be something that it’s not. Relationships that you could just walk away from without lawyers and settlements, are always fun because of the freedom. You and your significant other go out on a regular basis, may drink a little (or a lot), smoke a little (or a quarter), party, just experience the lighthearted,  fun side of the life. This also creates an illusion, that even while sharing 365 days a year with the person and half of your property, things will remain the same. It eventually becomes boring for a lot of people, and just as routine as your 9 to 5 career. Routine or a regular pattern is scary for some. That’s when reality really hits, and you realize “this is the rest of my life”. Routine is usually the end for the dreamer, putting a limitation on what was once a world of limitless possibility. Some are content, because they love their routine, whether it be their marriage or their job, while others are just not built for it, and need something more spontaneous.On the other side of over-hyping, some women expect the man in their life to all of a sudden become Prince Charming the mind reader when he becomes an actual husband. Women romanticize the idea of a wedding and marriage from the time they’re little girls and often over-fantasize about it, setting unreal standards for the married life. This isn’t all the romantic-drama films you cried and smiled while watching, ladies, this is real life. Not to say you won’t stumble on a good man who will take good care of you, but understand that a few vows and an “I Do”, doesn’t necessarily turn your man into Hitch. Long story short, if you’re not in-tune with the reality of what married life is really like, you might want to do your homework before making a mess that makes other people pay for your lack of thought.

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Regardless of the reason, at least half of the married couples in this country end up divorced. That statistic doesn’t account for the thousands of miserable couples who stuck it out for whatever motive they may have had. That’s a lot of unhappiness. Our elders and even young adults our own age, will often criticize a lot of my generations free-sex thinkers for having multiple partners and a lack of substance in their love life. But if they don’t want to be married and they’re not necessarily hurting anyone else, or doing any home wrecking in the process, who are we to gage their happiness?. I’d rather someone live in that swinger sub-culture than see another miserable married couple. And as far as the miserable are concerned, there is no good excuse for staying in an unhappy situation. Most people’s defense will be their kids, and the effects divorce has on them. How about what a miserable household does to them?. When there’s a constant war between parents, statistics have shown that most of the children internalize the blame for it. This has also been shown to lead to way more defiance and rebellion, and will often transfer into their mentality regarding relationships. In all fairness, some do set out to have a relationship nothing like their parents, and grow to be happy, but not without enduring scars. Divorced parents can still set a positive standard for their kids, where as a constantly negative at home environment never could. Another defense of staying may be the expensive process of a divorce. It’s understandable, but ultimately you’re putting a price on your mental health, as well as pretty much wasting your life because of lawyer fees and a prenuptial agreement. Nothings worth leading a miserable existence when you only have one life to live.  All in all, you can avoid the bullshit by doing the knowledge, regarding who your partner really is, learning to see signs of a monster in the making, or understanding what marriage is all about, and taking everything into account. It’s ultimately up to the individual whether marriage marks a new beginning or the beginning of the end.

Sidebar: To make it clear, this blog was to show the popular negative context that married people put on the idea of marriage. This is not an anti-marriage piece, because as I stated in the last sentence happiness or misery in marriage is completely subjective to how well you understand marriage and your partner. Me, personally, I’m completely for the thought of two people sharing life together, as long as its positive…

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Gentrification: A Plague To The Culture.

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If someone who walked the streets of Do-Or-Die Bed Stuy, Brooklyn, or 125th in Harlem, happened to move away somewhere around 1995, and decided to come back without much knowledge of the city now, they would question if they were even in New York City. The buildings may look a little nicer, rent may cost a little more, and crime may be down a bit,  in part due to gentrification. For those who aren’t exactly sure, and just hear it a lot, gentrification is just an inner city area being turned over to wealthier residents or new businesses and increasing property value. Though you look at one side of Gentrification and you see better school districts, less drug dealing on the avenues, and less run down looking buildings and homes, you may think “Well, this is great”. But there’s always two sides to a coin and more than one side of a story.

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The natives of these neighborhoods, that were once crime infested and run down are being pushed out, instead of reaping the benefits of gentrification after all the bullshit they dealt with in the neighborhood. Their children don’t get to go to the better schools, they don’t get to live in the safer version of their neighborhood, because its coming at their expense. People who have been in these parts of the city for years are struggling to pay rent due to all these improvements in the neighborhood. Gentrification is a plague to the city’s culture. Where there was once ethnic, hole in the wall, African, Soul Food, Italian, Chinese and Spanish spots to eat, there are now organic whole food places, or fast food franchises which took a lot of their places. Bodegas are a dying breed, due to 7-11’s and companies of that nature taking over. I always loved my city because of the diversity, because you can have so many different experiences, depending on which neighborhoods you go to. If you go The Bronx, or Spanish Harlem, you can get some Puerto Rican food at a Cuchifrito, if you go to parts of Brooklyn, you can get some banging West Indian food, or go to Howard Beach and get some real Italian food, you get the point. Instead, we’re in the beginning of an era where the last of the culture is still around, but you’re starting to see the same thing in every part of the city. Not that I have a problem with the city changing or the city improving, because that’s inevitable and positive, but at the same time, let the natives of that neighborhood be a part of it as well. Why does it take people of a higher tax bracket coming into a neighborhood, for the city officials to really make sure it’s a safer place to live? or to really put an effort into bettering the schools?, why wasn’t there just as much of a push for improvement when a lot of these neighborhoods were drug and crime ridden, with statistically the worst schools, from the 70s through the early 90s?. It take’s a couple of people from a different social class to take interest in the neighborhood, to really put fire under the city’s ass to clean it up.

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Gentrification is usually in its first stages, when a daring group of young, mostly white, counter culture “Hipsters” move into a neighborhood. They are usually individual thinkers, who are on the cutting edge and like to go wherever the rents cheap and cultures rich. There’s a great concentration of them in parts of Brooklyn, especially Williamsburg, as well as The Lower East Side of Manhattan, which has also transformed. When they start to move into these neighborhoods, they don’t do it for the purpose of gentrification, but the fact that they are mostly Caucasian, it helps wealthier people feel more comfortable with seeing the potential and the overall feel of the neighborhood. When Blacks and Hispanics began moving into white neighborhoods, around the 60’s and 70’s, a lot of the white natives of the area moved out, being dubbed the “white flight”. Now a lot of wealthier (of all colors) people are moving into areas that were predominantly built up of working class minorities, and the natives just get pushed out, with a lack of options.  There should really be some native appreciation, but in Christopher Columbus fashion, there isn’t. Gentrification, isn’t only something going on in the apple, but throughout the nation. The fact that homes are being lost because of changes in rent and taxes due to better school districts, etc, and legendary inner city neighborhoods are being stripped of their identity and culture, this is not going to happen without a huge consequence of tension among the victims of gentrification. But unfortunately, here in America, money talks louder than anything, and there isn’t a real understanding of the consequences until its too late. Sidebar: The New York City Culture also took a big shot when building owners who plan to put luxurious apartments up, whited out all of 5 pointz, the mecca of graffiti, in Long Island City, Queens. This is just the beginning.

5(Rest in Power)

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