It is as fast as lightning, yet as slow as snails. It may sound tasteful but the locals would spit at it with sour tongues. Hidden below the busy city, but hard to miss. Escapes the street to enter upon a fast feat of traffic, expectedly waiting for one thing. Stages fill up as they wait for the next line to deliver, filing in and out, as stops come up. Rocking and swaying as it goes by, I would advise not to let it lull you to sleep for you have somewhere to be. To gain entrance keep your wallet handy else, you be stranded at the landing. Find peace amongst the chaos, waiting for the most hated thing in San Francisco.

The already busy city seemed to have swarmed here, like bees back from germinating the flowers. Small, big, younger, older, and even older – they all varied. Not one thing set them apart from another still they were all different. Some rushing here, some sloughing there. Bags full of colorful consumptions, or labeled with the latest trends. Needling through traffic, wheeled and pedaled, not much of an escape from the bustling city, into a restaurant. Walls plastered with photos of the baked goods and sweets, and featured meals, the only filler were munching patrons at tables fitted to allow only enough space to pass. Searching to seat two put the saying “a needle in a haystack” in all too vivid perspective. Eventually, a cozy table became available in the front corner that offered a view of a closed pet store. I did not dare ask.

Gulls replace the sounds of honking cars and amalgamated conversations. Neon green lines the street for pedaling traffic to make their way up to the Golden Gate Bridge, but only if thighs can handle the uphill battle. A blast of foghorns blows in the distance as ripples of the water slosh against the barrier. Lounging sea lions ‘arf’ and bark on swaying rafts. An aquarium right on the water of the pier, a far-fetched idea that they did not have to go far to capitalize on.

To a rooftop entrance that masks a cozy sort of hideaway; passing through tall planted forestry and endless staircases that lead to unknown destinations. Finally landing at a door adjacent from a grass lot, allowing entrance into a dim lit room: with a small stage to the left lit by an anatomically incorrect backdrop of the city, in front of perfectly placed candle lit tables and chairs. Walled booth seats separate the room to the right, leaving an open aisle to clear for the bar. But no one will be giving directions from this map, only will it entertain whilst you may become bored by the lack of induced laughter from its occupant. The first evening of the week, local comedians sign up to showcase what they have worked on for, or lived through, this past week; Bringing new or improved material to test on the subdued audience that has piled into this secret dodge next to the movie theater. A few cackles echoed from the sea affront the stage, including a heckle from me, drunken ‘take it offs from the ladies’ night table in the far back corner, and such undisturbed silence for the ever deserving ‘funny guy’ on stage.

Often clichés make their ways into conversation where they are lest appreciated, yet it cannot escape this one nor in it lay more truth. San Francisco is a full of sights too bountiful, too beautiful to describe, and unforgettable once you’ve lived it.

 

 

Any of the places sound familiar? Let me know some of your favorites and you may just hear about it later. 

 

333

Feeling inadequate and I’ve barely even started, yet..

The sinking of my gut, the pull at my chest, the well up in my eyes say much more than I can put into words; outwardly it may seem like pouting and not getting my way because I’m seeing others do great things while I sit here and seem to get denied.

The pain of comparison.

What am I not doing that they are? Who are they that I’m not? Maybe I’m not supposed to do this… but why would I want to if I couldn’t? Such a bittersweet feeling – that want for but not doing what you aspire to do because of some sort of ‘limitation.’

Sad, when you think about it really, to let a thought come and stop all you wish to do. Your big dreams defeated by a tiny thought. Hmph.

Maybe it’s because of what my mother to me when I was 12 and wanted to try out for my middle school flag team, “you can try out, but just hope you don’t make it.”* I think that may have set the stage for every gasp or ooh of inspiration to become an instant pipe dream. 

What else could halt everything I set out to do, making it nearly impossible to complete my own ‘honey, to do’? Shit, not wanting to feel anything fully because on the other side it’ll just feel like a deflated balloon. 

Fear of rejection.

Is. 

Not. 

A.

Safe. 

Defense.  

Mechanism.

Feel the fear and do it anyway. 


*She says she never said that to me, but why would I remember it so vividly?

Real Talk, Episode 2 | Black Action

The saga continues, lol. This time I’m sharing my views on President Obama, his farewell address, and recall my weekend with Dr. Umar Johnson.

The saga continues, lol. This time I’m sharing my views on President Obama, his farewell address, and recall my weekend with Dr. Umar Johnson.

I’m adament about using every avenue that I can to get my ideas out of my head onto “paper,” so it’s my goal to get comfortable being in front of the mic on own and do at least 2 episodes a month.

Xoxo

What if Series #1: What if the Black dollar circulated near exclusively among Black people?

Powernomics is the name of the game. And knowing how and where to hit them where it hurts – in their pockets – is how we win. Once we realize that we control the economic resources in this monopoly game and band together, we’ll rise above this social disproportionality. Literally and figuratively.

African Blood Siblings

In the Service of our Ancestors and African Love,
Listen Seeker, I come in peace,

“An answer brings no illumination unless the question has matured to a point where it gives rise to this answer which thus becomes its fruit. Therefore learn how to put a question.” — African Proverb

As part of the What if Series, I explore the question

What if the Black dollar circulated near exclusively among Black people?
By Onitaset Kumat

Children love treats; lovers too. On a train, I sat across from a european jew whose child begged him for his favorite chocolate. Nearby, a young oriental girl sipped on a strange tea. Farther, a man with an accent from england ate chips. Despite my experience with chocolates, teas and chips, I could not recognize a single brand. Yet, when I saw a white-american child snacking in his corner, I noticed he ate the same…

View original post 1,361 more words

Flying Lotus Album Release Party

wp-1483950143717.jpg

It was a pretty chill Tuesday evening as the sun set on Los Angeles, a lively group lined the outer perimeter of the Mack Sennett Studio, chatting about the day and days to come, excited about the YOU’RE DEAD! release about to take place. Many of us did not know what to expect from this party; a few others and I went to the Little Dragon TumblrIRL event in May, but had not gotten the chance to make it in the door. We speculated but nothing could have braced us for the rapture that was to come.

The gates here welcomed us — entering the smoky, haunted halls, greeted by a smiling Michael Jackson, we crossed over. A looming death eater (a hooded and masked Flying Lotus) walked in our midsts, roaming back and forth to guide us, introducing us to purgatory. Lights flashed and cracked like lightning, the bass like thunder. On a highlighted, red screen projected shadowed beings, our spirits, as we continued on the journey to our final resting place.

DJ PBDY (P-Body) started the ceremonious evening off with bangers that rattled your brain loose from your noggin. My neck still hurts from nodding so hard. Monster beats shook and swayed corpses free of flesh to reveal rattling skeletons. Serenading us like a dear friend reading our eulogy, the string quartet raised and praised our souls. The heights the soprano violin held you at, made you feel suspended in the air. Just there.

wp-1483950035261.jpg

Breathtaking.

The spiritual dance was not over. Thundercat then riffed and wailed with his jazz ensemble, launching us to different dimensions with heavenly solos.

As for FL’s album itself, it’s hard to captivate its entirety into words. It bangs, it throbs, it rocks, it rolls, and it especially soars. Jazzy undertones match obliterating kicks of bass to make an eclectic conundrum of curtained sounds.

The sincerely special thing I observed was that every artist became a part of the audience when their set was over. Flying Lotus himself walked over to the watch Thundercat’s set just after announcing them a few minutes earlier, I made my way in behind DJ PBDY; everyone was there to enjoy the art.

What do you think the afterlife is like? This is the imagined concept of Lotus’ album, from his idea of what it would be like after this realm is no longer in need of us. When you can lose track of time and get lost in every rise, fall, hit, and drop of the music that’s when you know you have truly made a masterful piece of work, a feat Flying Lotus can say he has done. Paradise awaits, get it here.

Thank you Flying Lotus, Thundercat, and the whole crew, and TumblrIRL for putting on such a spectacular event, truly a once in a lifetime production.

xo