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I was playing with my daughter on the floor one night and realized I didn’t have my normal ease of getting off the floor. I attributed to a long day at work being in an awkward position and probably at least 4 other excuses. It kept happening. There have been times where I have been overweight but it has never affected me in a way where its slowed my movements or made an easy task difficult. This time it did. I know a part of this equation is that I’m sitting at 38 which is not 28 as Shaq once eloquently said. Also, a huge factor was that at that time I was 235 lbs which at 5’10 gives me a belly like Buddha. If I’m being moderately active and not being dumb with my diet I can usually rest at 212-215 range. If I’m in running mode I can rest in the low 200s to 195 area. This current incarnation of myself was unacceptable. I can’t have an active daughter and be that father that is telling his kid to slow down because they can’t keep up. How embarrassing is that?

My journey technically began at the new year and while I’ve could consistently be in the gym I haven’t had the weight loss I should because my diet sucks. (ed. note: As of 4/5 that changed, I have started by removing all sugary drinks from my diet) told my trainer that week: “Help me”. I felt like the pitiful little boy lost in a mall looking for his parents. I know that part of my triggers is right after I start really going hard in the gym my appetite goes crazy and I eat anything not nailed down. This depending on what’s in the house could result in a bag of Pop Chips being hoovered in sitting. That is “no Bueno”.

I started doing research on the impact of sugar on our diets. The levels of sugar in our drinks is crazy. As I started doing more research and saw that Fat was pushed as a focus not because of research but because of money that can be made from low fat foods. I recommend reading this article as it started my wheels turning — even though it took 2 months for me to start doing something about it.

I’ve done it before and I know I can do it again but I’m a little older and a little more set in my ways. I think in America we all fight this battle. The problem is everything that isn’t good for you taste delicious. I mean just thinking back to all the pie I’ve consumed in my life. But now I have a belly (my wife says it just a little belly…that’s just love talking) and I need to get rid of it. I’m big on achievement — so I just can’t work out just to workout. I need a goal so before I ran a lot and races were my goal. While I still want to run races I need something else to get me through. I do have to do this 5K in Atlanta again this summer to avenge my horrible showing last year.

2 Things are currently motivating me: My Family and Vanity.

Besides dodging the police department and making sure they don’t kill me with any interaction I must fight hypertension and avoid being a diabetic. I’ve been successful at 2 out of the 3.

Here I am, aspiring to have my Trey Songz body (pause) by the end of June. This means no more fast food (ed. note: No fast food is a moving target but my consumption of fast food has vastly reduced) and ensuring that every meal has a real vegetable (I was told lettuce doesn’t count). Luckily, I have iKia to help me stay on track with her motivational posts. We’ll see how this works out…stay tuned…I’ll either be ready to sing “OOO Na Na” shirtless at your local karaoke bar this summer or I’ll be hating the fact that I can’t find XXXL Bape Tees.

 

Ed. Note: As of 5/31 – BDotM is down 22 lbs with 25 lbs left to go to reach his goal weight. 

*I’m not a dietician and any claims are anecdotal based on what happened to me. Before you start a diet or any workout routine please consult your physician.

I’m not going to waste words here. These are the best two teams in the NBA by far and if you watched the terrible playoffs you knew this matchup was inevitable. The Cavaliers have a matchup problem. Kevin Durant is a problem that they don’t really have an answer for. They can throw LeBron at him, possibly Kevin Love but that’s it. If they are guarding a scoring dynamo like KD most of the game their offense will suffer. I don’t think Ty Lue would be foolish enough to put JR Smith on him. Even though LeBron is the best player in the world there is multiple people they can throw at him. They can throw the whole starting lineup at him except Steph to slow him down.

Apart of me thinks the Cavs will pull this out in 6

But my final prediction — Warriors in 5. Average margin of victory 15 points.

MVP: Kevin Durant

It’s not really a brave prediction. I think KD wants this. He wants this ring. If he played more games this season he could have been a contender for the MVP. Plus, I like his game better. So there’s that.

No I don’t spank my child. I’m not saying you’re a dick if you do spank but…you’re a dick. As a child I was spanked or as it’s colloquially called ‘beat’. And yes I am a functional adult and I survived with minimal therapy but that doesn’t mean that how I was parented 30 years ago should still be the standard. 30 years ago people were still using Toaster R Ovens, you’re telling me I’m supposed to use that instead of a microwave.

Nah B.

We all elevate our parents on pedestals that they can’t possibly live up to. We all assume we were parented in the right way because we feel ‘normal’. The fact of the matter is our parents did the best they could with the information they had. There isn’t any shame in that. It’s nothing that we should look back with regret or anything. As a parent that’s really all you can do. This isn’t a judgment on past parenting – this is a judgment on new parents who have new information but refuse to use it.

Two things are facts: Climate Change is real. Spanking doesn’t work. The science is in, deal with it.

This all came from a discussion with a couple of friends over the weekend. They were shocked that I wouldn’t assault my child (It takes a different spin when you phrase it like that huh?).  At the end of the day – that’s what it is… Maybe I’m being dramatic, maybe I’m not. If I’m at a point where I have to discipline via physical violence I have already lost. Take it from someone who was beat, often – it didn’t deter me from doing anything wrong. It just made me angry. That anger was just the feeling that was transferred from my parents. They were angry at me, rightfully so but still.

MiMo being 18 months old – she’s not understanding anything that nuanced of that I’m hitting her because she did something wrong and differentiating that she shouldn’t hit her classmates. That’s too much for a 1.5 year old to comprehend and to apply.

I’m not saying I have all the answers. Hell I don’t even know if I have any answers but I am confident in my feelings that hitting my child is something I am not comfortable with. When you discuss no spanking everyone gets the image into their head of the yuppie (read: white) parents in the grocery store with little Johnny screaming and going crazy. There’s a big jump between your child having no discipline and you committing first degree assault on your child.

Please, go ahead spank your kid (actually please don’t), just know if you do, you’re a dick.

Also enjoy Stacey Patton’s take in the NYT.

French President Emmanuel Macron reminded Americans what intelligence, class and youthful exuberance looks like in a leader.  The French opted against the nationalist wave by electing Macron. They took a stand for globalism and against xenophobia. While the people stood strong waving their French flags in joy, Macron’s speech to environmental scientist was reminiscent of one hip hop’s most notorious figures Suge Knight 1995 Source Awards acceptance speech.

This video is from 3 months ago but because of President Macron’s win its gaining new life.

 

Everybody. Minorities. LGBTQ. Elmo. Poor Christians. Ja Rule. Females. Bobby Brown. Poor people in general. The list is really exhaustive.

Let’s start with the facts the ‘repeal’ of Obamacare is not a health care plan. It’s a tax plan. That’s one of the few things that both sides can truly agree on — this has nothing to do with health care and everything to do with cutting taxes for the wealthiest 1%. The problem with the GOPs tax plan is that they went out of their way to screw the majority of their constituents. Luckily for them their constituents are one issue voters (abortion) so if they lose their coverage or if it skyrockets it doesn’t matter because Emperor Orange and inept merry men will eventually strike down Roe v. Wade.

Spoiler alert — It’s not happening.

The issue with health care is one of the few things in America that transcends race and cuts to the heart of America’s problem — class. I’m lucky enough to work for a large company and my premiums hasn’t really been impacted except for small increases but that’s to be expected. I have friends that opt to roll the dice with their health because they can’t afford coverage. The problem with the whole health care discussion is it was dishonest from the onset. This battle had nothing to do with coverage for Americans.

It had EVERYTHING to do with President Obama’s legacy. The administration is doing a systematic dismantling of it. This is what happens when the dumb rich kid wins.

It’s exhausting. That’s the goal of the administration exhaust the smart people so they stop caring. Nah B, I’ll pass.

 

PS. Outside of passing the HOUSE — Obamacare has not been repealed. Our president failed Civics and keeps forgetting that the bill needs to go to the Senate. But let’s not stop the victory lap.

 

This the ministry of street energy /The church of criminology, teaching my chemistries/Woo I’m the L. Ron Hubbard of the cupboard

Facts are facts. Deal with it. Not Kendrick. Not J Cole. Not Lupe. And damn sure not Drake.

The greatest rapper alive post 2002 is Terrence “Pusha T” Thornton. If you’re real with yourself you know he transcends any of his peers and it’s not even as close as you think.

He has given us the career that Andre 3 Stacks and Phonte wouldn’t. He has exceeded all expectations after splitting from a legendary group. Honestly, since The Clipse ended — he has gotten better. One of the few rappers that revel in being the bad guy. The character that doesn’t have any remorse for his sins and takes drug dealer braggadocio to another level. That is what makes his bars appealing. The drug dealer rapper is not a novel concept. He’s the conscienceless hustler that weaves heroin laced tales with dramatic imagery and sly wit.

There was this moment on “Fear of God” when I was listening to ‘Alone in Vegas” and I knew he was the best rapper on the planet and he was coming to prove it. This couplet “The self-righteous drug dealer dichotomy/I’m drawing from both sides, I am Siamese” is so profound especially if know the history and present of the Clipse and his relationship with this brother. While a part of him wants to be like No Malice and talk about the lighter side of life, he also knows that no one does this coke talk better than him so he voices the internal struggle.

Who else would use their songs co-star as a call to arms against fraudulent drug dealer rappers as he did to Rick Ross on “Hold On”? On the same album he flips the script and talks about the choices hustlers makes when they get caught on “SNITCH”. The way he weaves a tale that was happening in real-time into one of the strongest songs on the album.

When you look at “Darkest Before Dawn” everything from beat selection to his lyrics were built to make a mood. He wanted a modern dark album in the vein of Mobb Deep’s “Hell on Earth” where the depth of album aurally surrounds you. Even through the darkness he’s able to make records like “MFTR”  and “MPA”. Both songs tackling light subjects but Pusha’s pen game makes it sound profoundly ill.

Pusha T is a rappers rapper. He takes seriously the mantra of no lines off. The lines that he uses to set up punchlines aren’t throwaway — they add to the image he’s painting. Check the catalogue. “My Name is My Name” is a classic. “Darkness Before Dawn” is a ridiculously dope project. Loosies like “HGTV” and “Lunch Money” are just bangers.

So why won’t you give Pusha T his due? Because all he raps about is drugs?  Really? He’s so materialistic. Really? The question should always be — Can he rap? Does he rap well?  The answer to those are a resounding Yes. Pusha T is the greatest of his generation because he embraces an image in his rhymes that makes people uneasy. He’s drug dealer turned good but still revels in his past — because he’s comfortable enough admitting that its was fun. It’s not full of remorse of lost friends it’s him reflecting on the good times. Now he’s got legal money to floss in your face and he’s always talking about fly shit. Now that’s a bad thing? Ughk!

 

 

 

It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog – Mark Twain

As cliché as size metaphors are in sports there isn’t one more apropos than that one for Isaiah Thomas III. The one man show he put on last night against the Wizards is something that has been done by few. I have donned him officially the Young Mamba. He dropped 53 in the New Garden. And of those 53, 29 points in the 4th Quarter and overtime. You know who has scored more than that in a Celtic playoff game: Hondo (John Havlicek). That’s it.  He has the most points in a playoff game since Allen Iverson dropped the double nickel in 2003. He did it all with a new tooth to boot.There wasn’t a chance he was going to shy away from the big shot. He wanted the ball, he wanted to be the hero. He sought the spotlight and it wasn’t too bright on him. While this wasn’t a win or go home game — this was in the playoffs against a quality Wizards team that has been giving them the business all night. 

Now watch how quickly I drop 50
I don’t like playing, niggas can’t stick me – Jay – Z

Game 2 of the Celtics/Wizards series was a legendary battle of the point gawds with IT coming out the victor. When the 4th Quarter hit he went on ‘extra grind’ and put the Celtics on his back and carried them to victory. There is a backstory to this — IT’s sister who died 2 weeks ago, last night would have been her 23rd birthday. He has the weight of grief that he is carrying as well as a historic franchise. That nor the Wizards defense was enough stop or even slow him down. Scott Brooks looked inept on how to coach and get his team to execute on pick and rolls. Gortat on Young Mamba is a mismatch 10/10 times. 

There have been discussion on if a 6’0 (maybe) player can lead a team to a championship. If anyone can it’s him but he does need someone else on that team because the flip side to this story is they need another consistent perimeter scorer. Avery Bradley is a decent shooter and an above average defender but he missed a lot of open shots in the 4th Quarter. In a game that was physical they were unable to get the ball to Horford consistently in the high or low post down the stretch. 

The coronation of Young Mamba has begun. He and Russell Westbrook are the closest people we have to Kobe in the league now. He’s a straight assassin and when it’s time to step on the necks of his competition he does not hesitate. That is how you build a legacy — that’s how you become historic, Young Mamba is carving his path to greatness one clutch performance at a time. 

Donald Trump is who we thought he was. A bumbling idiot who was rich enough to convince people that he was smart enough to do the job. As almost every media outlet known to man have spent this last weekend reflecting on a mostly tumultuous start to his administration with little to show for it. His only accomplishment is the fact that he could get a conservative justice on the court but is that really something he should hang his hat on? It was a partisan effort, it’s the equivalent of having a 4 on 1 fast break in basketball and scoring. It would have been more impressive if that one person could have stopped them but if they score, that’s what they are supposed to do in that situation right?

I’ve been scouring conservative websites to see how they are spinning the obvious implosion of this administration and its comical at best. Fox News lists him speaking to the NRA as an accomplishment. Wow, keep scraping kids.

He’s signed 30 Executive Orders in comparison to President Obama at 19, Bush with 11 and Clinton with 13. I’m sure he sees this as a positive because everything the anti-Einstein aims to do is to bigger and better than his predecessors. Because he is a spoiled rich kid with no sense of how government works he thinks more is better and his sycophant followers are agreeing with him.

He has the lowest approval rating than the last 3 presidents settling in at a 42%. All this winning is sooooo boring.

Let’s talk about the unemployment rate — a measure that he lambasted on the campaign trail as being fake. Now he wants to take credit for but again because he failed civics he’s still under the President Obama fiscal year so these are the former president success.

Let’s talk about his successes — the travel ban? Wait, no that’s still being upheld in the courts. Even though his head lawman doesn’t understand how ‘an island in the Pacific’ aka a State can affect policy.

Build that wall! Build that wall! Where are we with the wall? Nowhere. Just to be fair — I didn’t expect anything to be done regarding the wall except have an actual plan for funding already moving through Congress. The fact that this hasn’t happened yet is a failure. This administration does not understand foresight, planning or ideas that make sense. Let’s talk about where the proposed wall is planning to be erected. The government will have to use eminent domain for American citizens which will place some Texas residences on the other side of the border. Which will make them Mexican citizens oh the irony. Also, that district went to President Bunker. 

He vowed to destroy or at least have a plan to destroy Isis within 30 days of him taking office. Yeah about that… The only thing he has accomplished is dropping the largest non-nuclear bomb in US History. Clap for him. Now he’s not even sure how to destroy Isis — which is something his predecessor and every defense specialist has been saying. This is where his inability to understand nuance affects your ability to lead.

He continues to take L’s on his big-ticket items such as repealing and replacing ACA and tax reform. You remember when this genius said repealing and replacing will be done within hours of each other and happen quickly. It’s literally like he doesn’t understand how not only government works but life. Once you give people something, even if it’s not perfect, you are going to have to fight to take it away from them. If you give me an 84 Yugo and then 6 months later come to take it from me we’re going to have words and probably fists to match. Because while that Yugo isn’t a Benz, its mine, and its possibly better than what I had before.

Where are we 100 days into The Trump administration? Not too far from where we were in January. This administration is gearing up for wars on everything old white men hate. Which I guess is the status quo for America. 

Truth be told — I’m the epitome of a sideline revolutionary. I make many bombastic statements online and in conversation but my Jordan’s aren’t on the ground and in the marches. I’m sitting on the sideline of history and watching the power of social media unfold into real world discussions and hopefully solutions. In Trump’s America, the screams must become louder that we and all minorities matter. BlackLivesMatter should transcend hashtags and become political agents. Conservatives mostly treat us a monolithic crime ridden community that needs to be extinguished from the planet and Democrats view us as a walking bank for there political contributions (i.e votes because collectively we don’t have wealth) to keep them in what little power they have left. Black’s in America are finding themselves in this political limbo that middle class uneducated whites found themselves in the beginning of the Obama years. The main difference is their limbo was self-imposed due to the systematic fail safes that is in American society. Enter #BlackLivesMatter. After the death of Trayvon Martin a viral hashtag created by Alicia Garza, Opal Tometti, and Patrise Cullors moved people to action. Any discussion about #BLM that does not begin with those women is not an honest discussion about #BLM.

What is Black Lives Matter really? I think it’s best for them to explain it in their own words

The problem with the above is that they never got enough of an opportunity to tell that story. Now there could be many reasons for that — the viral rise of the movement, the media butchering the message, and even to the detriment of BLM, not having a centralized/standard voice for the movement which lent itself to interpretation.

This is why #BLM is not the political force the Tea Party was when the political climate shifted. Unfortunately, they played a lot of defense early on by responding to negative stories in the conservative media. They allowed their movement to be co-opted by police officers and out of touch color blind whites with Blue/All Lives matter ‘movements’. The interesting thing about those ‘movements’ is that is exactly what America is built upon stealing/co-opting a black struggle — change it, make palatable for whites and immediately disregard said struggle which birthed it.

There is even confusion between what is a legitimate chapter of BLM which continues to add to the confusion.

The question always is always asked ‘what can I do?” From an outsider’s observation — there’s a lot you can do. One major thing is try to find your local BLM chapter and engage with them. Create a plan for yourself/family in what’s the best way to get involved. Ask people who are on the ground what their needs are.

Before you assume #BLM is just an excuse for black people to physically and emotionally beat on white people (oh the horror) understand that is not what BLM stands for. BLM is a voice for black  and other marginalized populations — not the voice — but a voice. It’s a voice that is severely needed. There is a need to figure out a way to move the energy from demonstrations to political capital. The first round of mid-terms is coming up in under 2 years. They need to continue to have the image of BLM evolve so that true political allies can evoke their name publicly and align with the visions. Black Lives Matter should be meeting with political operatives to increase their political voice to influence change. Start locally — one school board at a time, one sheriff’s race at a time. As a people, we should be more than picket signs, marches and RIP hashtags.