Friday, September 30

Finally some attention

This has been my neighborhood all my life - give or take some years in school or whatever - and I am glad to see Metro is finally noticing us.

Planners study East Nashville

Monday, September 26


So, I’m a few weeks into studying for the GRE and I’m averaging about 5 hours a week.

I’ve discovered that everything is about where I thought it would be. My math skills need a lot more work than my written and analytical skills.

We’ll see how the studying goes now that I’m about to start a new job.

Buddhist Thought of the Day

An act of meditation is actually an act of faith--of faith in your spirit, in your own potential. Faith is the basis of meditation. Not of faith in something outside you--a metaphysical buddha, an unattainable ideal, or someone else's words. The faith is in yourself, in your own "buddha-nature." You too can be a buddha, an awakened being that lives and responds in a wise, creative, and compassionate way.
Martine Batchelor, "Meditation for Life"

Sunday, September 25

Buddhist Thought of the Day

Do not go after the past,
Nor lose yourself in the future.
For the past no longer exists,
And the future is not yet here.
By looking deeply at things just as they are,
In this moment, here and now,
The seeker lives calmly and freely.
You should be attentive today,
For waiting until tomorrow is too late.
Death can come and take us by surprise--
How can we gainsay it?
The one who knows
How to live attentively
Night and day
Is the one who knows
The best way to be independent.
Bhaddekaratta Sutra

Saturday, September 24

Birthday Duo

Birthday Duo
Originally uploaded by bmitd67.

My Birthday is 9/14.
.vek's is 9/15.
We celebrated on 9/17.

Tara made dinner and a chocolate cake!

Going East

Going East
Originally uploaded by bmitd67.

Shelby Bottoms, Nashville...Trains above the trail

Friday, September 23

Buddhist Thought of the Day

Happiness cannot come from hatred or anger. Nobody can say, "Today I am happy because this morning I was very angry." On the contrary, people feel uneasy and sad and say, "Today I am not happy because I lost my temper this morning." Through kindness, whether at our own level or at the national and international level, through mutual understanding and through mutual respect, we will get peace, we will get happiness, and we will get genuine satisfaction.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama

Thursday, September 22

Job Search

While I am studying for the GRE with plans for Grad School and my MLIS I need a job. I thought I could do the unemployed thing for awhile but
  • it's lonely
  • I feel guilty b/c there are things I should be doing that I can't motivate myself to do
Now, I mentioned that I took a job at a local bookstore, which will be named this time next week. But just as I did while I worked at AMZ I am constantly trying to get a job at a library or museum.

I discovered this week that Metro HR requires a new app/résumé for every position, which is a waste of time and energy for everyone involved. So, yesterday I put in two apps for the public library system. And I decided that I've been trying too long to stick with the formal, traditional cover letters. One of the positions is for a kid's services position so I used a bold typeface with colors sprinkled in and, of course, I always use a shaded linen paper.

Hopefully this non-traditional approach will get me an interview at least.

Wednesday, September 21

Buddhist Thought of the Day

Abandon wrongdoing. It can be done. If there were no likelihood, I would not ask you to do it. But since it is possible and since it brings blessing and happiness, I do ask of you: abandon wrongdoing.

Cultivate doing good. It can be done. If it brought deprivation and sorrow, I would not ask you to do it. But since it brings blessing and happiness, I do ask of you: cultivate doing good.
Anguttara Nikaya

Nike Comes Clean

Nike Admits to Mistakes Over Child Labor


Only b/c ManU has such a deep bench is this allowed. If he were star striker on most any other team he would be let go.

Man Utd accept Rooney punishment

Tuesday, September 20

On this Day in Black History

1519 - Ferdinand Magellan left Spain to find a route to the Spice Islands of Indonesia.
1664 - Maryland enacted first anti-amalgamation law to prevent widespread intermarriage of English women and Black men. Other colonies passed similar laws.
1830 - First National Black convention met at Philadelphia's Mother Bethel AME church and elected Richard Allen president.
1837 - Theodore S. Wright denounces colonization at the New York State Anti-Slavery convention.
1847 - William A. Leidesdorf elected to San Francisco town council receiving the third highest vote.
1850 - The slave trade was abolished in the District of Columbia
1866 - Fisk Jubilee Singers founded
1890(?) - Jelly Roll Morton (Ferdinand Joseph La Menthe) born (this date is questionable)
1915 - Hughie Lee Smith born
1934 - Sophia Loren born
1954 - Stravinsky debuted "In Memoriam Dylan Thomas"
1958 - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was stabbed by Isola Curry while autographing copies of his book, "Stride Toward Freedom".
1960 - Chubby Checker's "Twist" became the #1 pop single
1962 - Governor Barnett personally denied James H. Meredith admission to the University of Mississippi.
1984 - The Cosby Show premiered on NBC.
1984 - Emory A Tate, Jr. won the 25th Annual Armed Forces Chess Championship Tournament.
1987 - Alfre Woodard won an Emmy for outstanding guest performance in the dramatic series L.A. Law.
1989 - F.W. de Klerk was sworn in as president of South Africa

Monday, September 19

British Scholar and Jounalist hits hard

Simon Schama: Sorry Mr President, Katrina is not 9/11
Prayers (like vacations) are the default mode for this president who knows how to chuckle and bow the head in the midst of disaster but not, when it counts, how to govern or to command.

Birthday Celebrations

This was one of the biggest shindigs I've had for my birthday in years.

My friend .vek celebrates his birthday the day after mine, although he is several years younger, and he suggested that he, his wife and baby come this weekend to jointly celebrate and see the astonishing growth of their daughter Sierra (almost 9 mths old).

Tara started making party plans - we have had three parties/dinners since we got married (3 months ago) which is more than my parents had in a year when the ran this household.

The KY kids got here Friday evening and .vek and I exchanged soccer shirts (soccer is one of many things we have in common). Nothing really crazy on Friday.

On Sat. we met Anne-Marie & Kevin for brunch at the almighty Monell's (a must eat when you come to Nashville for the first time, or the second time, or even if you live here). After some make-fun-of-Jai time .vek & I went to Grimey's while Tara and Christine took a nap. Then the fun began...

Dinner included the 7 of us from earlier plus Tara's mom and her new "friend" - they were on their way to see a Moonbow in KY. The plan was to watch some of "Lost" but my DVD player didn't like the disk so we played UNO.

Overall the weekend made up for the gloom of the previous week. I had the company of some really cool people and I got some great gifts:

Buddhist Thought of the Day

The present moment is changing so fast that we often do not notice its existence at all. Every moment of mind is like a series of pictures passing through a projector. Some of the pictures come from sense impressions. Others come from memories of past experiences or from fantasies of the future.

Mindfulness helps us freeze the frame so that we can become aware of our sensations and experiences as they are, without the distorting coloration of socially conditioned responses or habitual reactions.
Bhante Henepola Gunaratana, "Eight Mindful Steps to Happiness"

Friday, September 16

A new job.

Since severence didn't last as long as hoped. I start a new job at a local bookstore.

It's about 50% of what I made at AMZ Music but it will get me on the literary path.

I will mention their name only after I sign the papers.

You know a man is married when...

...he vacuums the entire house.

Now, if you haven't seen my house it's a 2 story Tudor with wood floors (hard, cork & bamboo). Tara has respiratory concerns and b/c of that she doesn't sweep she vacuums. We have guests coming this weekend and since we lost our last cleaning lady and it's an off week I have to do these domestic tasks.

On to the bathrooms.

Thursday, September 15

On this Day in Black History

1588 - The Spanish Armada, which attempted to invade England, is destroyed by a British fleet.
1789 - James Fenimore Cooper born
1791 - Jonathan Edwards, Jr. (1745-1801) preached a strong anti-slavery sermon before "the Connecticut Society for the Promotion of Freedom and for the Relief of Persons
1821 - Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and El Salvador proclaimed independence.
1829 - Slavery is abolished in Mexico.
1830 - First National Negro Convention held
1852 - Jan Earnest Matzeliger born
1852 - Edward Bouchet born
1857 - William H. Taft born
1876 - White terrorists attacked Republicans in Ellenton, South Carolina.
1883 - The University of Texas at Austin opened
1889 - Claude McKay born
1890 - Agatha Christie born
1898 - National Afro-American Council founded
1902 - James Theodore Ward born
1903 - Roy Acuff born
1907 - Fay Wray born
1921 - Snooky Pryor born
1923 - Governor said Oklahoma was in a "state of Virtual rebellion and insurrection" because of KKK activities. Martial Law was declared.
1924 - Robert "Bobby" Short born
1928 - Julian "Cannonball" Adderley born
1935 - The Reich under Adolf Hitler adopted the swastika as the national flag.
1940 - Anne Moody born
1943 - Stephen Burrows born
1945 - Jessye Norman born
1946 - Oliver Stone born
1946 - Tommy Lee Jones born
1949 - "The Lone Ranger" premiered on ABC
1963 - The 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, AL was bombed by white supremacists. Four African-American girls (Addie Mae Collins, Denise McNair, Carole Robertson, and Cynthia Wesley) were murdered.
1964 - Rev. K.L. Buford and Dr. Stanley Smith were elected to Tuskegee City Council and became first Black elected officials in Alabama of the 20th century.
1965 - "Lost in Space" & "Green Acres" premiered on CBS-TV.
1971 - Greenpeace founded
1978 - Muhammad Ali defeated Leon Spinks to win his 3rd World Heavyweight Boxing title.
1982 - The first issue of "USA Today" was published.
1987 - Thomas "Hit Man" Hearns became the first Black man to win boxing titles in five different weight classes,
1990 - Bruce Hornsby began filling in on keyboard for The Grateful Dead following the death of Brent Mydland.
1998 - Coolio was arrested on suspicion of carrying a concealed weapon and possessing marijuana.
2004 - Johnny Ramone died

Buddhist Thought of the Day

Although there are countless teachings that instruct how to obtain enlightenment in a future life, almost all of them are nothing more than expedients. As the ultimate instruction there is simply no teaching that is superior to the true practice of the awakening to one's own nature.
Hakuin, "Zen Master Hakuin"

Wednesday, September 14

Birthdays are the loneliest days

Today was my birthday. I turned 38. I was at home alone until about 7pm when I went to the Y, then I was alone in public. As I think about it was pretty depressing.

Tara was busy, I don't have any current coworkers. There were some calls which I am grateful for but this is the life I have chosen.

Tara and I had a discussion about church a few weeks ago and she realized how much of a loner I actually am. We had this discussion about the fact that one day, when we have kids I will have to go to church - most likely to her church b/c I would be very surprised if she left Edgehill for any reason. The problem is I really don't like her church. The people are great, very friendly and seemingly quite interested in each other (and now that I am married to one of them, I am one of them) but they just don't do church like I want my church. I have problems with the gender neutral language, I have problems with giving communion to the parishioner on my left or right and I don't want to wear a nametag.

What's going on is Tara likes being a part of the community of her church; she participates in everything. She was recently appointed or elected President of the Women's Group. I like that one hour a week where I am focused on what "God's" place in my life is all about. I like the pomp and circumstance. Hell, I liked the Altar Rail.

I haven't been to church in such a long time that it seems odd to even consider this stuff but back to my original point. All churches are communities and Tara's church requires a much higher level of individual participation than I'm used to or really want. I told her I want the option of being anonymous and her church doesn't really offer that option.

During this conversation she, quite exasperated and even a little shocked, said something about how I'd be happy with one friend and that would be my wife and I said yes, yes I would.

Today it was hard to find that one friend.

Get out the vote

Yesterday we voted to raise sales tax in order to pay for schools and something about helping seniors...

We have no income tax which is cool and all but we have an extremely high sales tax 9.275% if I remember correctly. Anybody with sense realizes that sales tax hurts poor folks more than any other group and more than any other tax. You don't qualify for tax breaks and you pay this tax on food and clothing and utilities.

TN struggles just like every other gov't to properly use tax money but come on, don't we need to reconsider our tax code in general?

Schools take hit as tax hike fails

On this Day in Black History

1789 - James P. Beckwourth born
1814 - Francis Scott Key wrote the lyrics to the "Star-Spangled Banner."
1849 - Ivan Pavlov born
1874 - White Democrats seize the Louisiana statehouse in a white supremacy coup. President Ulysses S. Grant ordered the rebels to cease, but not before eleven African-Americans are murdered.
1891 - John Adams Hyman, the first black Congressperson from North Carolina, died
1921 - Constance Baker Motley (first Black woman appointed federal judge) born
1928 - Dunbar Hotel opened
1940 - North Carolina College Law School opened with seven students as North Carolina's second Black law school
1940 - President Franklin D Roosevelt signed Selective Service Act which allowed Blacks to enter all branches of the US Military Service
1945 - Freda Payne born
1953 - Chicago Cubs baseball team integrated for the first time
1960 - The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) founded.
1964 - President Lyndon B. Johnson awarded the Medal of Freedom to Leontyne Price and A. Philip Randolph.
1967 - James Clifford Sanders III born
1973 - Nas born
1975 - Pope Paul VI declared Mother Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton the first U.S.-born saint.
1985 - The MTV Awards were held for the first time
1998 - Johnny Adams died

Tuesday, September 13

On this Day in Black History

1663 - First serious slave conspiracy in colonial America. Plot of white servants and slaves in Gloucester County, VA was betrayed by an indentured servant.
1856 - Maria Louise Baldwin born
1867 - Gen. E.R.S. Canby ordered South Carolina courts to empanel Blacks jurors.
1881 - Louis Latimer patented his electric lamp with a carbon filament.
1885 - Alain Locke (first Black Rhodes Scholar) born
1886 - University of Maryland Eastern Shore founded
1904 - Joseph Delaney born
1908 - Leon "Chu" Berry born
1911 - Bill Monroe born
1913 - Cholly Atkins born
1918 - Ray Charles born
1922 - Charles Brown born
1926 - Andrew Brimmer (first black member of the Federal Reserve Bank Board of Governors) born
1931 - Adrienne Kennedy born
1943 - Chiang Kai-shek became the president of China.
(?) - Geronimo Pratt born
1948 - Nell Carter born
1948 - The School of Performing Arts (the first public school to specialize in performing arts) opened in New York City.
1953 - Iyanla Vanzant born
1955 - Little Richard recorded the song 'Tutti Frutti', for the Speciality label in Los Angeles.
1962 - President Kennedy denounced the burning of churches in Georgia and supported voter registration drive in the South.
1964 - Tavis Smiley born
1967 - Michael Johnson born
1968 - Bernie Williams born
1970 - The first New York City Marathon took place.
1972 - Johnny Ford of Tuskegee and A.J. Cooper of Prichard were elected mayors in Alabama.
1977 - Fiona Apple born
1996 - Tupac Shakur died

Monday, September 12

On this Day in Black History

1609 - Henry Hudson sailed down what is now known as the Hudson River.
1787 - Prince Hall became the head of African Lodge No. 459 in Boston
1840 - Mary Jane Patterson born
1859 - Florence Kelley born
1865 - Avery Normal Institute founded
1873 - Madame Sul-Te-Wan born
1913 - James Cleveland Owens (Jesse Owens) born
1916 - William Alonzo "Cat" Anderson born
1919 - Adolf Hitler joined German Worker's Party
1922 - The Episcopal Church removed the word "Obey" from the bride's section of wedding vows.
1931 - George Jones born
1935 - Richard H. Hunt born
1944 - Barry White born
1947 - Jackie Robinson named National League Rookie of the Year
1953 - U.S. Senator John F. Kennedy married Jacqueline Lee Bouvier.
1954 - "Lassie" made its television debut
1956 - Black students entered Clay, KY elementary school under National Guard protection.
1963 - The last episode of "Leave it to Beaver" was aired.
1970 - University of Southern California Trojans (featuring the first all-Black backfield in Division 1 college football) beat Alabama Crimson Tide.
1974 - Haile Selassie deposed by military leaders
1974 - Eugene A. Marino, SSJ, was consecrated at the first African American auxiliary bishop in the USA
1977 - Stephen Bantu Biko was brutally murdered
1983 - Arnold Schwarzenegger became a U.S. citizen.
1984 - Michael Jordan signed a seven-year contract to play basketball with the Chicago Bulls.
1986 - National Council of Negro Women sponsors its first Black Family Reunion
1992 - Dr. Mae Jemison became the first African-American woman in space when she launched from the Kennedy Center
2003 - Johnny Cash died

Anne Rice - a New Orleans voice

Thousands didn't leave New Orleans because they couldn't leave. They didn't have the money. They didn't have the vehicles. They didn't have any place to go. They are the poor, black and white, who dwell in any city in great numbers; and they did what they felt they could do - they huddled together in the strongest houses they could find.

Do You Know What It Means to Lose New Orleans?

Buddhist Thought of the Day

Don't strain. Don't force anything or make grand, exaggerated efforts. Meditation is not aggressive. There is no place or need for violent striving. Just let your effort be relaxed and steady.
Bhante Henepola Gunaratana, "Mindfulness in Plain English"

The Boondocks

Posted by Picasa
Thanks UComics for keeping me laughing.

Sunday, September 11

Reflections on Katrina & Bureaucratic Hubris

From the Sewanee Alumni List:
As I drove down Gulf Beach Highway on the west side of Pensacola early this a.m. to get the paper, I was struck by the realization that, just over one year ago this week Hurricane Ivan came ashore right at the spot I was headed to get this morning's New York Times.

With new debris piles from Hurricane Dennis mixed in with the now one-year old detritus remaining from Ivan, the ruined houses and businesses belying last year's promises of the brothers Bush to "repair and rebuild", at very near the exact spot where GWB visited these people of West Pensacola, I pass a still-damaged Catholic church with a sign reading: "Katrina Donations Collection Center".

These people KNOW what it's like - like all long time residents of this coast do.

Inside the NYTimes is a special section on the storm, complete with a detailed timeline of who said/did what when; local, state, federal, defense, FEMA, etc.

In my opinion, it's a truly damning statement that as our politicians attempt to wrap themselves in the 9/11 tragedy once again these 4 years later - now, amid the results of the Conservative's veiled gutting of FEMA, Homeland Security, and emergency preparedness God has peeled back the veneer to reveal the soft underbelly of the Beast for all the world, including our enemies, to see.

Sorry for the outburst this morning folks, but I feel sick, almost physically sickened, by all this.

- may God have mercy -

God DAMN IT! Another one gone!

Gatemouth's home in Slidell, LA, a bedroom community of New Orleans, was destroyed by Katrina, Rick Cady (his booking agent) said.

"He was completely devastated," Cady said. "I'm sure he was heartbroken, both literally and figuratively. He evacuated successfully before the hurricane hit, but I'm sure it weighed heavily on his soul."
I'm sure he was also hurt by Vassar's death. I saw a Vassar show in New Orleans once...Vassar was borrowing Gate's band and then about 1/2 through the show Gate came out and played fiddle for about 45min...he didn't come with any instrument so he borrowed Vassar's.

Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown dies at 81

Buddhist Thought of the Day

Arouse your will, supreme and great,
Practice love, give joy and protection;
Let your giving be like space,
Without discrimination or limitation.

Do good things, not for your own sake
But for all the beings in the universe;
Save and make free everyone you encounter,
Help them attain the wisdom of the way.

Friday, September 9

On this Day in Black History

1087 - William the Conqueror, Duke of Normandy and King of England, died
1739 - Slave revolt led by rebel named Jemmy, in Stono, SC. Twenty-five whites were killed before the insurrection was put down.
1776 - The second Continental Congress officially made the term "United States", replacing the previous term "United Colonies."
1786 - George Washington called for the abolition of slavery.
1806 - Sarah Mapps Douglass born
1816 - John Gregg Fee, founder of Berea College & abolitionist, born
1817 - Alexander Lucius Twilight, who was probably the first Black to graduate from an American college, received B.A. degree at Middlebury College.
1817 - Captain Paul Cuffe (father of Black Nationalism) died
1828 - Leo Tolstoy born
1836 - Abraham Lincoln received his license to practice law.
1850 - California became the 31st state to join the union.
1872 - Delilah L. Beasley born
1884 - John R Lynch presided over Republican National Convention
1890 - Colonel Harland Sanders born
1908 - Richard Wright born
1914 - Marjorie Lee Brown born.
1915 - Carter G Woodson founded Association for the Study of Negro Life and History
1926 - The National Broadcasting Company (NBC) was created by the Radio Corporation of America (RCA).
1927 - Elvin Jones born
1934 - Sonia Sanchez (Wilsonia Benita Driver) born
1941 - Otis Redding born
1946 - Billy Preston born
1957 - The first civil rights bill to pass Congress since reconstruction was passed by President Eisenhower
1957 - Rev. F.L. Shuttlesworth mobbed when he attempted to enroll his daughters in "white" Birmingham school.
1957 - Hattie Cotton Elementary School with enrollment of 1 Black and 388 whites virtually destroyed by dynamite blast.
1962 - Two churches burned near Sasser, GA
1966 - John Lennon and Yoko Ono met in an art gallery.
1968 - Arthur Ashe won the US Open
1968 - A new HUD headquarter building in Washington is dedicated by the first Secretary of Housing & Urban Development, Robert C. Weaver. It would be renamed to honor Sec. Robert C. Weaver, the first Black Cabinet Member, in 2000.
1948 - North Korea became the People's Democratic Republic of Korea.
1949 - Joe Theisman born
1956 - Elvis Presley made his first appearance on the Ed Sullivan show "Toast of the Town."
1957 - The first civil rights bill to pass Congress since Reconstruction was signed into law by U.S. President Eisenhower.
1966 - Adam Sandler born
1970 - Macy Gray (Natalie McIntyre) born
1976 - Mao Tse-tung died
1984 - Walter Payton (Chicago Bears) broke Jim Brown’s combined yardage record
1997 - Junior Wells sliped into a coma after suffering a heart attack four days earlier.
1998 - the Chicago Defender Building was dedicated as a Chicago Landmark.
2004 - the Cracker Barrel restaurant chain agreed to pay $8.7 million as settlement in a discrimination law suit
2004 - Secretary of State Colin Powell said that abuses by government-supported Arab militias in Sudan qualify as genocide against the Black African population in the Darfur region.

Buddhist Thought of the Day

“I am breathing in and liberating my mind. I am breathing out and liberating my mind.” One practices like this.
The Sutra on Full Awareness of Breathing, translated by Thich Nhat Hanh

Space is the Place

Charlie Hunter Trio 03
Originally uploaded by bmitd67.

Charlie is one of my top musicians. He like Jeff Coffin, Derek Trucks, Cassandra Wilson & John Scofield aren't afraid to mess with tradition but they also understand when NOT to play. It's the spaces between that allow the music to breathe and the tension to rise.

Thursday, September 8

Another Gaping Wound

Another Gaping Wound
Originally uploaded by bmitd67.

Although there was an empty lot at the head of my street part of it was filled with these huge 3 story trees.

Because the Nashville Auto Diesel College is down the street and b/c South Inglewood is not the richest neighborhood we get another auto parts store...that will make 3 or 4 within a 1 mile radius... URGGGHHHH!

A Big Football History for a small School

Eventhough they were just beat 52-7 Sewanee once boasted a ferocious football team.

A Winner’s Tale

Wednesday, September 7

This is what football is all about

NFL Stands by Kanye

College Soccer Game of the Week

Now this is the way to gain support and spread the game!

I like the idea although I'm a bit worried about the technology, most collegiate games have pretty shitty video capabilities.

College soccer will air on FSC this fall

The kitchen is done...

From white to color
Originally uploaded by bmitd67.

and here's proof.

This kitchen was last renovated in 76ish. It was done in burnt orange and avocado. The top half of the walls were wallpapered with a ornately textured/striped wallpaper that was green and gold.


Originally uploaded by bmitd67.

I have nieces and a nephew now...hmmm.

These are the two oldest of three. Yhazmin, the one in the back, was celebrating her 7th b-day.

Jaliyah, the one in the front, is CRAZY! She used to call me "that man who's gonna marry Tara". Now she hugs me and everything.

Nature in East Nashville

Jai's Butterfly
Originally uploaded by bmitd67.

I love to see wildlife do what they do. This little guy was just sitting on the flower, flapping his wings...very nice.

Maynard G Krebs RIP

Bob Denver has died of complications from cancer

Tuesday, September 6

Wish I Was In Heaven Sitting Down

Memorial Service for R. L. Burnside

Buddhist Thought of the Day

Better to conquer yourself
than others.
When you've trained yourself,
living in constant self-control,
neither a deva nor gandhabba,
nor a Mara banded with Brahmas,
could turn that triumph
back into defeat.
Dhammapada, 8, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

Monday, September 5

Krystal of New Orleans

Krystal of the Future
Originally uploaded by bmitd67.

Even fast food has flare in NOLA, let's hope it can regain that edge...

Jackson Square

Tara in Jackson Square 2
Originally uploaded by bmitd67.

Tara in Jackson Square. This is the river side of the Vieux Carre (French Quarter) and a great spot for photos and people watching.

I hear the Quarter has faired pretty well through the storm.

Social Club Parade

Social Club Parade
Originally uploaded by bmitd67.

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Fest 2003...just one of the many great things about the city...

Muchas Gracias a Mexico

US becomes the first CONCACAF Team to qualify for Germany!

USA book passage as big three pull away

Walkin' to New Orleans

Last night after a movie (Mad Hot Ballroom) and dinner with Anne-Marie & Kevin I was talking with Tara about all this hurricane madness. We were comparing the response, or our responses, to this and to 9/11. I explained that although I was absolutely dumbstruck, confused and saddened by what happened on 9/11 this situation in New Orleans has angered me.

I spent a lot of time in this city, I know people there and to me it is a cultural foundation for America. There was an article in the Tennessean the other day in which Chris Thomas King (a Baton Rougian who's lived in New Orleans for awhile now) said there is no music in New Orleans right now. In a city that includes music in all aspects, even funerals, there is no music. That saddens me beyond belief. The energy of that city moves on the's palpable.

What angers me is the seeming lackadaisical response from the federal gov't and probably the state too. It seems we were all lulled into "this was a bad hurricane but the worst is over" and then all hell broke loose. What the fuck?

I won't even go into the racial implications of this pattern of response but I will say that this is at the very least an extreme case of those that have shall keep and those that don't shall lose. If you had a car or money for a trip you got out of the city but if you don't have money for a trip and you just paid your rent...SORRY, you got to go to the Superdome.

There is no reason why a natural disaster and it's aftermath should be as chaotic and tragic as this in a country with as many resources as the US has.

Sunday, September 4

On this Day in Black History

0476 - Romulus Augustulus, the last emperor of the western Roman Empire, was deposed when Odoacer proclaimed himself King of Italy.
1530 - Ivan "The Terrible" born
1609 - Henry Hudson began exploring the island of Manhattan.
1781 - Forty-four men and women establish California's second pueblo, Nuestra Senora la Reina de los Angeles de Porciuncula. Twenty-six of the founders are of African descent. The settlement is now the city of Los Angeles.
1786 - Jehu Jones, Jr. born
1848 - Louis Latimer born
1865 - Bowie State College
1875 - Clinton (Mississippi) Massacre, Whites attack to overthrow a reconstruction government.
1886 - Geronimo, and the Apache Indians he led, surrendered
1888 - George Eastman registered the name "Kodak" and patented his roll-film camera.
1901 - Mantan Moreland born.
1905 - Meade "Lux" Lewis born
1908 - Richard Wright born
1918 - Gerald Wilson born
1923 - George Washington Carver received the Spingarn Medal for distinguished research in agricultural chemistry.
1957 - The Arkansas National Guard was ordered by Governor Orval Faubus to keep nine black students from going into Little Rock's Central High School.
1960 - Damon Wayans born
1962 - Archbishop Joseph Rummel ordered the New Orleans Catholic schools to integrate.
1965 - Albert Schweitzer died
1967 - "Gilligan's Island" aired for the last time on CBS-TV.
1973 - John Ehrlichman and G. Gordon Liddy were indicted with two others in connection with the burglary of a psychiatrist's office two years earlier.
1974 - Oliver Cromwell Cox died
1981 - Beyoncé Knowles born
1990 - Jesse Jackson secured the release of 26 American prisoners in Iraq
1999 - Philip Glass with the Kronos Quartet debuted a new filmscore to accompany the classic 1931 film "Dracula"

Buddhist Thought of the Day

Those who are afraid of all the sufferings in the world, and yet who are afraid of death, seek for nirvana. But they do not know that the world and death and nirvana are not to be separated from one another. They imagine that nirvana is to be found through annihilation of the senses, not knowing that the world of the senses is already a mirage or a miracle when it is no longer clutched at.
Lankavatara Sutra

Saturday, September 3

Reality TV!

Kanye West's Torrent of Criticism, Live on NBC
"Kanye West departed from the scripted comments that were prepared for him, and his opinions in no way represent the views of the networks..."

Remarkable Talent, High Stakes, Legitimate Spite and Venom

Mexico coach Ricardo La Volpe called American soccer "ugly" and said the U.S. remains inferior to Mexico in soccer despite the monumental World Cup win over El Tri.

U.S., Mexico soccer teams just don't like each other

Friday, September 2

Gulf Coast

You know, after this first happened I didn't think it was all that bad but slowly more and more reports contradicted that idea. Now, I have watched and heard so much that I don't know what to think.

I am so saddened by the loss of life and historic treasures and I am so frustrated by what seems to be such half-assed response. I heard today that Carnival Cruise Line was considering, CONSIDERING, offering help. What the FUCK! If fucking Sri Lanka and the Dominican Republic (two of the smallest countries on God's Green Earth) can give us money what is the matter with these asses who embark cruises and dock ships in New Orleans!?

I don't know. I know the whole place is fucked up but it seems like some of the private companies (not just non-profits or aid organizations), could do more with the logistical things...

I wish the best to all those folks and hope that all those who died have safe passage.

Buddhist Thought of the Day

We also often add to our pain and suffering by being overly sensitive, over-reacting to minor things, and sometimes taking things too personally.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama

This one has me written all over it...

On this Day in Black History

31 B.C. - Octavian (Augustus Caesar) defeated the alliance of Mark Antony and Cleopatra to become the first Roman emperor.
1766 - James Forten (one of the founders of the American Anti-Slavery Society) born
1789 - The Treasury Department, headed by Alexander Hamilton, was created
1833 - Oberlin College founded
1864 - William Tecumseh Sherman occupied Atlanta
1884 - John Parker patented the "Parker Pulverizer" (Patent #304,552)
1896 - Amanda Randolph born
1896 - Edith Wilson born
1901 - Adolph Rupp born
1901 - Vice President Theodore Roosevelt made his "Speak softly and carry a big stick" speech at the Minnesota State Fair.
1902 - Rex Goreleigh born
1912 - Romare Bearden born
1921 - Ozzie Williams born
1928 - Horace Silver born
1943 - The Liberty Ship Frederick Douglass was torpedoed and sunk in the Atlantic by Germany
1945 - Ho Chi Minh proclaims himself president & declared the independence the Democratic Republic of Vietnam.
1945 - Japanese surrendered on V-J Day, ending World War II.
1953 - John Zorn born
1956 - Tennessee National Guard were sent to Clinton, TN to quell mobs demonstrating against school integration.
1958 - Frederick M. Jones patented a control device for Internal Combustion Engine
1960 - Wilma Rudolph became the first American woman to win three gold medals at the Olympic Games.
1963 - Gov. George Wallace assigned state troopers to prevent the integration of Tuskegee High School
1966 - Frank Robinson voted Most Valuable Player in the American League.
1966 - Salma Hayek born
1969 - K-Ci (Jodeci) born
1969 - NBC-TV canceled "Star Trek"
1969 - Ho Chi Minh died
1975 - Joseph W. Hatchett became the Florida's first African-American Supreme Court justice since Reconstruction.
1983 - Arthur Huff Fauset (author of Black Gods of the Metropolis) died

Thursday, September 1

RL done gone

and we will miss him.

I was fortunate enough to see him on several occasions, he was one of a kind.

Pick up Deep Blues and You See Me Laughin' to get an idea of what we'll be missing.

Well, Well, Well

As if the news from the Gulf Coast wasn't bad enough...

R.L. Burnside
November 21, 1926 - September 1, 2005

We at Fat Possum are sad to announce that R.L. Burnside died today at his hospital room in Memphis.

Blues artist R.L. Burnside, who redefined the blues genre by incorporating indie rock acts and hip-hop production, died September 1, 2005, at St. Francis Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. Burnside was born November 21, 1926, in Harmontown, Mississippi, and spent most of his life in the north Mississippi hill country, where he worked as a sharecropper and a commercial fisherman and played guitar at weekend house parties. In 1968, noted folklorist George Mitchell recorded Burnside for the first time. In 1991 Burnside was the first artist signed to then-fledgling Fat Possum Records in Oxford, Mississippi. His debut, "Too Bad Jim," was produced by former New York Times pop critic Robert Palmer. Along with his friend, neighbor, and label-mate Junior Kimbrough, Burnside was one of the most popular and important blues musicians to emerge in the last two decades. He recorded the crossover collaboration "A Ass Pocket of Whiskey" with the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion in 1996 and became a cult hero. In 1998, music from "Come On In" was featured in several movies and television shows, including The Sopranos. Burnside sold hundreds of thousands of records in his lifetime. He is survived by his wife Alice Mae, twelve children, and numerous grandchildren.

Those wishing to help should send donations to:

Freeland & Freeland Trust Account
Burnside Memorial
P. O. Box 269
Oxford, MS 38655
All proceeds will go directly to RL's widow, Alice Mae.
Photo by David Raccuglia

Go to Fat Possum for more...


It’s 9/1 and I went to the library for 2 hours.

My math skills are as bad as I remembered and my reading comp/vocab skills are just a little rusty. I need to really go back to algebraic and geometric basics b/c this stuff was really only a vague bell.

I never blew these tests either way. I was always a median performance test-taker; my math was a bit below and my verbal was a decent amt above.