Elevate Those Guns a Little Lower

Marcus Mosiah Garvey Jr., Black Nationalist

If only Marcus Garvey and Martin Luther King knew that the streets (and schools for that matter) named after them by majority would have turned out to be cesspools of violence and ignorance.  Perhaps they would have opted to lend their names to police stations – just to cut out the middle man. 

The recent story is that of a 79-year old man who was shot and killed during a shoot-out involving three other unidentified men on Marcus Garvey Blvd.  He was innocently sitting in front of the barber shop when bullets began flying and his life ended.  This happened literally about a block and a half from my doorstop, on the street I’ve told my husband several times that I refuse to walk down (even though our laundry mat sits stubbornly in the middle of said block).  I came home the other day to a barrage of sirens, helicopters and  cops swarming my street and a blockade re-directing traffic down Putnam avenue.  Saalik sat focused on his Mac when I walked in the door and told him what happened.  “Well, now you have something to write about…”

Well, not really.  I mean, maybe I could become an advocate for the personal use of body armor.  Especially since I unknowingly walked through an open crime scene 20 minutes after a murder took place while police were still in a scramble to chase down the assailants.  Maybe I could wear a tee-shirt marked with the shocking murder statistics for BedStuy – a whopping  60 shootings in my area alone this year, 95% of which resulted in death.  I’m sure that would make an impact. *sarcasm*

I remember when I lived in Houston I got into an argument with a woman about gun possession (a popular topic in that area).  She said it’s every citizen’s right to defend themselves.  This was someone who never lived in a low-income area, never experienced a shooting, never lost a friend to gun fire (part from war) and had no idea what the real face of violence looked like.   I told her with a straight face – “Guns are legal because they’re a loose form of population control.  Not to protect your silly nick-nacks.”

Guns are legal because they justify war, they justify a legal system and a correctional system. Guns are legal because back in the day – when war was at your front step instead of over seas, protecting your family took on a different meaning.  Today that’s just not relevent.  The ONLY thing gun-owners are protecting themselves from is other guns – now what sense does that make?

Aside from owning our own conscious behavior the only other option for action is to make some noise.  We can tell our local officials that we’re upset, that we want effective change.  We can believe (though difficult) that this will make an impact.

Click Here to tell your local officials that you want gun violence to stop, and that you want tougher laws against violators.  Send them a note, send them a picture of someone you’ve lost.  Tell them that their laziness makes them responsable.


Where the Hipsters Roam

Had a pretty chill day in Williamsburg with my husband and good friend, Princess (who is returning to her true calling in her blog Empty Your Closet).  We meandered through the streets, down Bedford avenue, from a tiny Thai spot to the Meeker Ave Flea Market (which we found out is NOT closed down despite rumors of a business fail), and then to Roberta’s Pizza where we each had life changing experiences tasting the best zah’ in Brooklyn.

The rain was on and off and the sky was relentlessly gray, but it was an awesome day spent with two of my favorite people.

My husband displaying some less than appropriate behavior (hence the reason we're a perfect duo).

The illusive collar hood unveiled.


Princess Glover of Empty Your Closet

Amazing art wall near Meeker Ave.

Tuckered out and headed home for some quality "us" time.

Occupy Your Rights

It’s building into quite the movement.  Occupy Wall Street (#occupywallstreet) is now growing after a major upset by the NYPD.  Tonight MSNBC is interviewing Russell Simmons who spent the day meditating and encouraging the members of OWS and its expected that even more will join their march this weekend.

The Daily News mindlessley slammed the organization for it’s disorganization, sighting them as “spoiled brats” who are disrupting the morning commte of those near Wall Street who have to “work for a living”.

I was shocked that such a gross put down on the youth of America (the CONSIOUS youth) was published in a local newspaper.  Well…not that surprised.

You don’t have to take a side.  But you DO have to admit that Occupy Wall Street has a point.

[photos from last weekend (day 7) as myself and friends Ari and Princess went to see what the fuss was about]

Hurricane Irene | Live from Brooklyn


A photo of Hurricane Irene from NASA


So the hub-bub this week is Hurricane Irene.  New York was in a frenzy yesterday as Eddie and I went to three different stores trying to find batteries, candles and other emergency supplies.  Everyone was already in an “anything can happen” mood after an aftershock from the Virginia/ DC area rocked New York City for about 15 seconds.  But those 15 seconds still represented something unheard of (unimaginable?) happening.  Now, on alert, my fellow New Yorkers scattered around Manhattan, buzzing about, seeking out the things nyc.gov told them to buy.

The only thing that really bothers me about Irene – aside from the abrupt stop to our vast transportation network – is the fact that the news is putting on a very scary display of the storm.  I’m more than aware of the seriousness of catastrophic weather.  I know hurricanes are dangerous, that people have died, that they are unpredictable.  I also know that I’m in a high-rise point of Brooklyn, that I’m far away from the danger zone and that me and mine will wait out the storm and be fine…

…our mothers in California, however don’t.  Between my mother’s worried questions over the phone and Eddy’s mother’s barrage of text messages, we were compelled to talk about the difference of the “alert” New Yorkers are actually feeling to the panick the rest of the country seems to be in.  Obama calling Irene a “historical storm” didn’t help matters.  Even I found myself re-checking the news for updates at that point.

Is this the apocalypse supply line?

New York Times quotes a local New Yorker


The point of all of this, if your honest enough to look closer, is that everyone should be prepared.  Emergencies happen all the time and suddenly those conveniences and safety nets we’ve carefully placed in our life has been shut off.  Its important that people (all over) learn how to maintain, even when the power has been cut off.




Saturday (in pictures)

What do you want to do today?

Putnam Avenue was setting up for the annual block party as my fiance and I strolled to Peaches to meet friends for brunch.

Killing time

Brunching with our (also engaged) friends, Tia & Shonee

The artist never sleeps - sketching on a napkin while we wait for the bill.

Headed back to the house to grab a blanket. Bed Stuy vibrates on weekends.

In front of our apartment. Pony rides for the kids...For the kids Ash.

At Fulton Park as we make our way to the subway.

Sheep Meadow in Central Park

This could be a joke. This could be a warning. Got to love New York.

Where to?

The Mr. enjoying a strawberry freeze in front of the Bethesda Terrace

"Want some?" (good guy)

This kid was creating incredible bubbles!!

My favorite flower (the Lotus).

We were planning on renting a boat for the day and touring the lake, but when we found out that the Boat House workers were on strike due to unfair treatment, sexual harassment and gratuities being withheld by management. - we changed our minds.

Heading towards the sailboat pond instead, to seek out a cozy spot to rest.

Poor choice in blanket. Snacking on fruit and nuts, playing cards and snapping pictures of the nature that surrounded us.

Heading home. Opting to take the beautiful tunnel pass instead of the stairs.

Kind of obvious why I'm in love, right?

Headed back to Columbus Circle and passed a bunch of people dancing to Fred Astaire.

Mom’s The Word

My mom’s visit has come and went and we had a blast hanging with her in Brooklyn.  We capped off her visit by going to see Fuerza Bruta (“brute force”) a high energy interactive live show recommended to me by my friend Tia.  We checked out the flea market in Williamsburg, took a Vinyasa (hot yoga) class, had wine, food and lots of catching up.  Here are some snaps from the visit…

Inn't he cute?

My impromptu vintage shortie shorts.

Uber delish salsa from Mexicali (Brooklyn)

Due to my mom being so camera shy, this was just about the only photo of her from the weekend. Gorgeous!

Awesome finds at the Meeker Ave Flea in Williamsburg.

Amazing vintage secratary desk!

"Yes, uurrrrmmmm....how much for this?"

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