Bebe’Kids, Out from Under

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Mural by Tschabalala SELF (Baltimore Museum of Art

After months of pandemic lockdown, the Baltimore Museum of Art opened its doors to the public, April 2021. 

I’m walking through an art exhibition entitled, NOW IS THE TIME. Artists, Not born in the 1800’s, but from the 1960’s to 2002. DALIN HALEEM, was born in 2002. JARRELL GIBBS was born in, 1988. 

As I kept walking, I stopped at the exhibit entitled, THE FIFTHE CHILD BURNING, by LONNIE B. HOLLEY. 

Lonnie B. Holley’s, FIFTH CHILD BURNING

A torrent of emotions made highways through my system. Should I hold my hand over my mouth to scream out loud, muted slightly by my four fingers and a thumb? Should I stomp on the museum floor in expressions of rage and sympathy? Or should I be dignified and whisper silently, in a language only I could understand? 

NINA SIMONE’s “MISSISSIPPI GODDAM”, flashed through my mind. I could see Nina at her piano, wishing she could jump up from that piano stool, eat some spinach, and like Popeye the cartoon character, with amplified vigor, flail that piano through the 20-foot wooden concert doors, with a heaving chest, tears and spittle bellowing, “now I can breathe!”. 

RUFUS, by VALERIE MAYNARD

Bebe’s kids are not done yet. In an adjoining room, emblazoned comparable to the size of a theatre screen, is a work by TSCHABALALA SELF.  (opening photo above).

And then there is the stiff upperlip copied from Rufus by Baldwin.

To stand next to a black female figure 15 to 20 feet tall with all the prodigious mounds that made white men leave their mansions to fornicate in the bowels of the ghetto, is very intimidating, and for some men regardless of color, this experience, could lead to appointments with mental health institutions.

Artist RAMSESS, quilts SOJOURNER TRUTH.

Bebe’s Kids are not only out from under, they are out breathing fire. …WHAAAAT!!! Could be the reaction in the neighborhood.

Can I Touch Your Hair?

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Courtesy of YouTube

“Said I’m a give you some instructions. 
you can’t be scared to try 
I want you to touch it softly. 
Like the way that you do my mind 
It got body and it’s smooth to touch.
 

The same way as my skin 
But don’t you be scared. 
 
[Chorus] 
To run your hands through my hair 
Baby, ’cause that’s why it’s there 
Come run your hands through my hair 
Ooh, baby don’t you be scared .

So come run your hands through my hair”

Lyrics from a love song, (MY HAIR) by Ariana Grande. She is not black, not a woman of color, but sings R&B, and behaves for the most part as though she was brought up in the black culture, especially here in the United States. 

So why am I commenting on this subject about “HAIR” ?  Now playing at Center Stage Baltimore, Md. Is the play, THE GLORIOUS WORLD OF CROWNS KINKS, and CURLS. By Keli Goff.

Three women: two chocolate black, and one éclair, talking about their hair, and its effect and affect on their employment and love life, not to exclude fashion sense. 

“Tyrone said I was too dark and picky headed”. The biracial had “good hair”, and was a from a family of medical professionals, did scuba lessons and ballet. 

Another lost her hair after childbirth. The brown paper bag test is all in the conversation. And so is Michelle Obama, as the savior and exemplar of the new black woman.

Stori Ayers (actress, female #1)

So, what are some of the conclusions to be drawn from this 2-hour show? Fall in love with the black woman, but don’t be attracted to her hair, you cannot touch it without permission, unless you have been granted a license to do so. These heads of glory are for the black women’s girlfriends to shout salutations to each other from a distance. So, get this: you’re salivating, she is too, there is the clash of emotions, ecstasy explodes, evidenced by sweat and screams of excitement; hands are going wild, but hold it! “Don’t touch her hair!”, says the squealing voice embedded in your ear

Awa Sal Seika (Actress, Female #2)

Shayna Small, is female #3

On an observation tour on a busy sidewalk, supermarket, or mall, what are black men looking at? Not the HAIR! Because they cannot touch it. Their motivation and rise of blood pressure are coming from other parts of the “females” being/anatomy. 

So, what happens when those areas of attraction start becoming obtuse, or flaccid? The invasion of insulin resistance. Black men are then left to look for women with less cellulite. Is it any wonder why author Shawn James, penned the book, WHY  70% of BLACK WOMEN ARE SINGLE? 

The Evolution of Hip Hop Fashion

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Ankle strap stiletto, by Francesso Russo

I have always had an avid interest in my inherited culture, and as a media documentarian, have repeatedly looked for ways to promote “the life,” even though I’ve been limited by numerous circumstances including attitudes. 

Having travelled and lived in more than one continent, I have had a broad exposure to the diaspora’s heartbeat. 

As I watched the 63rd airing of the GRAMMYS, I saw the evolution gaze of millions worldwide. I saw the masquerade bands of Guyana, the steel drums of Trinidad and Tobago, the “RASTA “Reggae” of Jamaica, the samba of Brazil, the R&B of USA, and the Afro beats that came with the ancestry across the middle passage. 

On my visits to New York City, the major fashion houses in the “garment district” did not carry the clothing for those with whom I rubbed shoulders on the pavements. That population followed RUN DMC, LL KOOL J, KOOL MOE DEE. Sweats, bomber jackets, T-Shirts, sneakers, and boots, were the fashion. 

Gone were the styles of Johnny Mathis, Little Richard, Marvin Gaye, Dianao Ross, Aretha Franklin. HIP HOP, spoke revolution. A language of defiance, non-conformist. The masquerader had found his audience; if he did not want to comb his hair, he did not; eat fried chicken with his hands at a gala, he did. And Africa rained supreme: gold chains, with links as big as finger knuckles; diamonds placed on the body in places, perhaps only the residents of Sodom experienced. 

Black country singer Mikey Guyton, Beyoncé and Megan Thee Stallion, Beyoncé, HER, host Trever Noah, Beyoncé/Megan

MEGAN THEE STALLION, was the ultimate at the Grammys. Covered up modestly from waist high, and then carried a split from waist to the floor with Stiletto heels. Her dance was a “flounce” in masquerade language. (Gyrations of bouncing flesh, never before seen on national television). A tremendous upgrade, the masqueraders do theirs barefooted, down to the floor, [limbo] sweat falling from their bodies, while onlookers cheer filled with 100 proof rum. 

I consider the ultimate upgrade for Hip Hop fashion to be DA BABY. WHITE SUIT, WHITE GOLD, WHITE DIAMONDS, WHITE JUDGES DRESSED IN BLACK and he wore what seemed like a WHITE ASCOT! 

This outfit you may soon be seen at Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s, and Nordstrom. Maybe my creation of the OSTIE, and OSTIE 2 (unisex), may finally get some breathing room. I am not from the Hip-Hop community, so I have no significant following. www.Osworldinc.com is my skin care line and has been around since 1992. I have been confined to barber shops. Some people peel off the label to see if I am fronting for someone else. I get the occasional, “Oswald, I did not know you…” then they go out and purchase Oil of Olay, or an off brand from The Dollar Store. 

I do not endorse everything associated with hip-hop, however, it is admirable to see the sons and daughters of the African diaspora, create a revolution, similar in spirit to the one amalgamated in 1776, when the 13 colonies shouted in unison, “no more!” 

When the Black in Cablinasian, says, “GOOD GOD ALMIGHTY!”

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Tiger Woods, fist pump.

Before the fame of Tiger Woods, I never heard the word, in fact it is found in the Wiktionary as a mix of Caucasian, Black, American Indian, Indian, and Asian ethnicities. 

A mispronunciation can sound phonetically as “cannibalism.” 

With the United States wrestling to acknowledge its 400 years of repression, sexism, misogyny, and RACISM! People of color, who were “waiting to exhale,” are breathing, BLACK LIVES MATTER! when the most famous golfer in the world, a man of color, the most outstanding CABLINASIAN, was involved in an automobile accident on a California highway (2/22/2021). 

As a man of African descent, and a son of one of many that crossed “the middle passage,” to build the “new world,” I thought of Tiger Woods, and why he decided not to call himself “BLACK.” 

Throughout those centuries, the black man was gold to the world’s economy. The sugar cane could not reach Europe, for the gentry to sweeten their tea, for the molasses to make rum, the cotton to produce clothing for the elite, were it not for “black muscle.”

That muscle became entertaining, so the plantocracy, and money launderers, saw wealth in buying and selling that muscle, in namely, SPORTS:  JACK JOHNSON, JACKIE ROBINSON, JESSE OWENS, JOE LOUIS, MAHAMMED ALI, MICHAEL JORDAN. 

For most of these athletes, it was Caucasian ingenuity, that made their ascent to worldwide glory, and thus they were introduced to a world heretofore unknown, a world the African American woman could not match. But beware of a world that you have no control of, it can bite you like a rattler, especially when that muscle turns to fat, and the twinkle in “their eyes” has turned to darkness. 

Tiger was riding high until he stepped out on his Caucasian wife, and went on a rampage of sex escapades, Not, with Cablinasian women! What? How dare he perform a multiple JACK JOHNSON? He lost all his endorsements, but for two. Just imagine, Gillette fired him, for sleeping with women not his wife. ONLY MEN WHO SLEEP WITH THEIR WIVES USE GILLETTE SHAVERS (Ha!) 

Nine years later, the Tiger muscle roared again, (not unlike Mohammed Ali), and the sponsors came back, including Gillette; but Tiger was still sleeping with Caucasian women, including a ski jumping star and she was not married to him. 

Tiger has an 11-year-old son (Charlie), who has begun to show some of that Black muscle. Aha! The money launderers are rubbing their palms, this is another winner in the offing! Maybe?

So, Tiger is preparing for the Masters at Agusta, next month (March 2021). He is close to being a billionaire. He is still single and is on a California highway alone when he crashes his car. If we look at all the celebrities in our world, what percentage of black men in this financial capacity are involved in drunk driving, hit and runs, speeding? And they make the evening news every time. 

Tiger Woods is not involved in his first car crash. He has had plenty of women, plenty of money, loves the Cadillac, loves the limelight, is divorced, and has children, who live primarily with his ex-wife. SOUNDS LIKE A BLACK MAN TO ME. So what’s missing? Tiger’s never had any thick black cake; pound cake is no match. When that day arrives, Tiger Woods voice will change, and you will hear him say with a roar: “GOOD GOD ALMIGHTY, I AM A BLACK MAN!” 

A new synonym for “Greed”

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(Above image from Twitter)

First, there is the recognition of greed. In some circles it is defined as the following: intense and selfish desire for something, especially wealth, power, or food. 

“mercenaries who had allowed greed to overtake their principles” 

So, if the definition is fool-proof, a greedy person, has the ethics of a mercenary, making money at the expense of others. Rapper Kanye West made millions in a song identifying some female mercenaries as “gold diggers”; leaving some to exclaim, what did you marry Kanye? 

 There is a progression in the greed factor; it inevitably leads to the acquisition of power. This recloaking of the human being, follows the small take-overs that ferment that human psychology, to want more. Subsequently, the self-interest becomes self-absorbing. Now, it is not just the car, but several, not just money in the bank, but own a few banks, not just women, but a harem, own a country, build an empire, rule the world, where humans are disposable, and the PROTAGONIST, shrouded with glory by the guileless human zombies, though highly certified by prestigious universities on the planet!..lives on. 

Greed is human, and what is chillingly frightening, is based on LOVE. But genuine love is based on empathy, quite a stark contrast. 

Did Hitler love Germany? What about El Cid of Spain? Did Louis 14th, love Haiti and Toussiant Louverture? 

History is full of examples of greed. All the greedy ones die ignominiously. Consider this: when the certified thief cried out, “you truly are the Son of God, remember me!”, with no prerequisites, with no demand to be loyal, The MAN on the stake, happily said, “Truly, you will be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:43) 

In 2020 (AD) Anno Domini, we had a fully defined and unquestionable synonym to greed, with the exact number of letters, 5: T.R.U.M.P

“THE EMPTY MAN IN AMERICA”

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It is probably not what you may have in mind, if you thought of going to see this movie without looking it up. 

The world including those of us in Baltimore MD., are looking at the ups and downs, of emotions of friends and others, as the pandemic forces us to look internally, and even live in bubbles for safety. Digital communication, is reigning supreme! 

There is a longing for outdoors, to do something familiar, watch a movie that is not on Netflix or YouTube. Yeah, THE EMPTY MAN, why not? 

It is about the youth, college age students attending university to expand their minds, create, explore, question and create a new world. This exploratory, led some to follow the philosophy of “THE EMPTY MAN”. The appeal led to dominating the world, based on philosophical thought. But there is a downside: once you are “in” leaving is difficult, your own friends can be motivated to kill you for revealing the secrets of “THE EMPTY MAN.” 

After the show, I got to thinking, is that just fantasy, or could that be reality? Do we have an “EMPTY MAN” in our midst today? Do we have many following a man based on his philosophical thought? Do we have some who would kill for him? 

David Karesh had a religious movement, where his followers confronted federal authorities, and later died as martyrs for him, in Texas. 

Rev. Jim Jones led his followers from San Francisco, USA to the hinterlands of Guyana South America, where they demised in death. Jim Jones as well as David Koresh, wanted revenge for not getting their way. So, did THE EMPTY MAN. 

DAVID KORESH, JIM JONES, and THE EMPTY MAN

In 2020, an equivalent is on the horizon, TO MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN. Supporters of this philosophy, have bought guns and ammunition, issued threats, intimidated minorities, for revenge.  How dare an African American, insult me, as occurred at the Correspondence dinner in 2011-THE WHITE HOUSE! If America is going to get health care, it will not be in the name of a black man! 

The actions, the countenance, spoke loud and clear.

THE EMPTY MAN in this case is obviously not fictional as in the movie, he is real. He has overcome Covid-19; “You’re fired!” has been his mantra, and he is awaiting a “wave of red” (people who are not of African descent) to take his prejudicial reign, to 2025. 

THE BALTIMORE BUTTERFLY

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Red Admiral butterfly

Butterflies are aplenty, but they are not butterflies at procreation, they are, eggs, larvae, pupae, the stages of metamorphosis, before the world beholds their beauty and magnificence, as adults. Many die during the process. Almost a simile for some babies born in the bellies of poverty- laden cities and towns, throughout the world.

The Baltimore Center Stage theater group has begun an artistic series, categorizing Baltimore as a “Butterfly”. I do not know which one is associated, but I believe THE ADMIRAL, would be appropriate. It has black wings, red bands and white spots. (Baltimore City, a truly multicolored community). 

The idea of the theater group is to foster togetherness, and this group believes, the arts community is uniquely qualified to create such a reality; to influence, politicians, businesses, and clergy. 

I watched the October 5th, 2020 presentation, featuring actress Nia June, Lisa McCray of Baltimore Beat, and musical artiste, Darius Christian. 

Several butterflies from all parts of Baltimore, including Howard County, read texts from famous writers and the many ways they experienced Baltimore.

The Red Admiral is one of the strongest butterflies; this human butterfly, a.k.a, composite butterfly, (Baltimore City) needs the right environment, and nutrition to reach its glory. 

Baltimore needs industries, business ownership, not only for some;- change of legislators and legislation,- for all the butterflies to survive, and live in a state of reasonable contentment. 

WHEN NAKED BREASTS ARE NOT FOR SEXUAL AROUSAL

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Images from the current BMA exhibition, A PERFECT POWER, Motherhood and African Art.

It has long been symbols of fertility, so much so that such  pictures became symbols of the African diaspora, birthing the phrase “mother Africa”. 

“Sweet mother I no go forget you” (Prince Nico Mbarga) 

European women visiting the continent, became jealous of the sinuous African women’s bodies, walking along the popular African beaches. They wanted to look tanned and shirtless, like the natives

The French went “buck wild” on the Caribbean beaches, and rudely envied the body population of Brazilian beaches, like “Ipanema”. 

One is not left aghast, in looking at an African woman with the bulge in her pregnant belly, or nursing her baby in public. In fact, in the industrial world, it became a landmark of independence, or revolution, when female celebrities began taking pictures of their naked bodies while pregnant, for the world to see. 

These everyday depictions of MOTHERHOOD have finally come to the Balitmore Museum of Art, in an exhibition entitled A PERFECT POWER. 

It is a collection of art from Central Africa, especially the Congo, and parts of Zambia. 

It is precious art, representing a time, when African men left home for the hunt, and mothers were home to do everything until their men returned. 

For Baltimore, it is the grand re-opening of the museum since the pandemic hit, and all went into lockdown. BLACK LIVES MATTER, is now draped along the front entranceway, and African masks are also what your eyes will behold as part of this exhibition, curated by Kevin Tervala. 

This is a test, especially for my male counterparts, of whether they can see this exhibition and be asexual. 

contributions-photo

NO, SHE DIDN’T

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Kim Klasik Billboard

IT HAS BEEN FULLY DOCUMENTED THAT THERE IS SYSTEMIC RACISM, in America.  

This is not new.  It references to the old tried and true, “divide and conquer”. The most enslaved race, not only in America, but the world, has been, the Noir, Negro, Black, African… with a suffix, i.e. Caribbean, American etc. 

Why was the house slave getting the hand –me-downs, and others, the left overs? The “house slave” was the snitch. (Django Unchained). Hence “black on black” crime has hundreds of years of history. 

In our lifetime here in the United States, Clarence Thomas (Supreme Court Justice) has merged into the tapestry of his master; and as we have to closer to the 2020 General Election, I watched with disgust Herschel Walker and Jim Brown, stand guard for “El Cid”, who occupies the WHITE HOUSE. 

KANYE WEST? Not enough space. 

Baltimore Md. Is primarily a black city, and filled with the two classes of blacks earlier described, but the women have escaped the classification, until now. 

There is a congressional seat to be filled, and a black woman affiliated with “El Cid” wants to occupy that seat. 

Outside of Baltimore are county suburbs, with names like Howard, Carroll, Frederick, Wicomico, where occupants live on large spreads of land with half a mile driveways. Blacks living in such spaces are rare. 

So, I am driving West on route 32, about to leave Howard and enter into Carroll, when sitting at the beginning of one of those driveways, is this massive billboard, with a black woman, as though she is an international model, shoulder length hair flying. WHAT??? 

I DROVE HALF A MILE, then made a U turn. I had to see this for myself, to confirm I was not dreaming. I was not. A picture of KIM KLACIK! 

Okay, we know why the black men sold out, and they are in the derisive bracket, now the women are joining them? 

In the echo of Leslie Bricusse, “Stop the world, I Want to Get Off!” 

CALLING ON YOUR ANCESTORS

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Jazz vocalist and composer Akua Allrich

Of all the races on earth, the main race to call on their ancestors, incessantly in song, is the African. Why? 

Undoubtedly, the richest continent in the world with raw materials, Africa, with diamonds, gold, manganese, precious stones, oil, cocoa, copper, and human muscle. Then why are the majority inhabitants, so poor? Africa is not that far from the GARDEN OF EDEN, where the first man Adam lived in paradise!

The Arabs and the European nations, have some of those precious materials, but not like Africa, and the African climate made it easier to get. Records show that Africans, like indigenous Indians, are tribal, making them vulnerable to deceit. Leaders dominated the majority (and still do), thus the invaders from other continents, once their fabrications overwhelmed the leadership, tribes were overrun. In pain the tribal followers had no hope but to cry out to their deities for help. The muscle of slavery was the gold, the stock market, exported across the Atlantic. Africans sang for salvation, as they were beaten, and thrown across the bows and sterns of boats; sold by their tribal leaders, four hundred years ago. Now the Chinese are invading. 

In North America, the whaling cry got morphed into commercialized Blues, Jazz, and negro spirituals. In the Caribbean, the additions were Calypso and Reggae. 

Today, John Legend (an African American songwriter/performer) enjoined with the new Black genre, Hip-Hop, as exemplified in Common,( a well-known hip-hopper) have produced “GLORY”. (Best Original Song, 87th Academy Awards-2015) 

One day when the glory comes, it will be ours”; the opening words. 

Akua ALLRICH, this week, (9/21/2020) was given the space to make her cry, at the Baltimore Museum of Art. I watched: 

“One day, we’ll cry for glory, …when the war is won,…we’ll cry GLORY, Oh, GLORY”! ..ONE DAYYYYYY!