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See you at the next funeral


Image result for casket

Ain’t no drama, like family drama, cause family drama, don’t stop!

Color me hopeful.

My father died when I was six years old and my brother is nearly a generation older and didn’t appreciate my existence. There was one man in the family who took me under his wing, my Uncle. He would take me fishing and camping and include me in his family events.

This was nine billion years ago when fake wood Station Wagons roamed the earth. It was back in the day, when department stores had a husky department for chubbinel or fat boys. My uncle had a bushel of kids all near my age. They were like my sisters and brothers. I would take the bus, some 17 miles away to his home, a place I felt welcome. My cousins and I would dance to the latest 45’s records on their Sears Silvertone Stereo.

Image result for sears silvertone stereo cabinet

He was the most important male in my life. I wanted to be like him, have a house full of loving children. I think my love for station wagons and minivans today is due to my admiration of this man . As I grew older, cracks appears in the relationship with my uncle.

Whisper’s from family members hundreds of miles away. He would interview me about the cost of my clothes and this news made its way to the Pacific Northwest. I learned that I was spoiled,took advantage of my mother. At thirteen, I was larger and taller than my uncle. When I was 18, he did something unthinkable to my side of the family. When I challenged him, he hit me in the chest. (my body didn’t move) I didn’t hit him, but I think this scared him.

From this moment forward, I became a pariah.

All contract between me and my grown cousins ended. It was like a death. Then the rumors began…….. My uncle created a number of false stories about my life. It didn’t matter he didn’t know I where I lived or what was actually happening in my life.

From that point forward, my cousins and I only saw each others at funerals. At the meetings, I always felt a spark of days gone by at the sad events, leaving me hopeful . But it wasn’t meant to be.

Days, years, decades. Marriages, Divorces, Children, Grand Children.and of course Death. None of our parents are alive.

Last summer, I learned about the death of one my cousins. The last time we’ve seen each other was at the funeral of her mother. I called her older sister to get the date and time of the funeral. She said, she didn’t know. Other relatives from out of state asked if I had information, because they wanted to attend. After a couple of un-returned calls, I Googled her name.

I learned the services was being held at Funeral home less than three miles from where I live. We actually lived an hour from each other. The downside, the services was taking place the very next day. I contacted my niece and and asked her if she would join me. A grandmother, she was a teenager the last time she’d seen this side of the family.

While it was a sad occasion, I was actually looking forward to seeing this side of my family, my niece brought her son.

Entering the building, I noticed the elder sibling. As children she and I were close and I was greeted with a smile. From there it was downhill. Our reception was chilly. Nice to see you and why are you here!

Although, the services began at two. Most of the people arrived after three. I could feel the divisions within the family. Children, and Grandchildren. Not the loving family, I remembered. Perhaps it was all in my mind back then or perhaps we all too young to develop resentments. Even though I was an unwanted guest, I was happy being with my family.

Forever hopeful, I exchanged telephone numbers with the family and announced that we should make an attempt to stay in touch. I could feel my niece and her son giving me the side eye, like please!! The two of them teased me in the car! A couple of weeks later, I contacted a couple of the cousins and Melba Toast had more moisture than the conversation. It takes two people to have a relationship so…….

Guess, I’ll see you next funeral.

I think its normal to hold on to those special times/memories. However, those memories, moments in time that can cloud our realities. Forever hopeful, we sometines stay in fruitless and sometimes painful relationships too long because of a memory .

If my uncle was alive, I would tell him about the positive impact he had on my life. Those memories make me smile today. At the end of day, we have to accept what is. Not what could be. It takes two to build a relationship. Angry, I’m not and resentments are a waste of time.

My uncle was highly regarded by his children which is to be expected. What he said about me may have irreparably damaged any possibility of relationship with my cousins. My love for them is there and that has to be enough.

CityFella

Joe Biden is the President Elect, it only took me 23 days to exhale


Theyre Dancing In The Street Martha And The Vandellas GIF -  TheyreDancingInTheStreet MarthaAndTheVandellas DancingInTheStreets -  Discover & Share GIFs

Okay! I’m finally ready to dance in the street.

Listen, Trump Truma is real and I have to thank ,right wing conservative media for freeing me from my freedom! They have collectively untied me and un-handcuffed me from that Truma tree.

Fox News, host Laura Ingraham said, “Unless the legal situation changes in a dramatic and unlikely manner, Joe Biden will be inaugurated on January 20.” Tucker Carlson said, the 2020 election was not fair”, but admitted Trump had lost it.

Rush Limbaugh, was beyond pissed!!!! “They promised blockbuster stuff, and then nothing happened,” “You call a gigantic press conference like that, one that lasts an hour,” Limbaugh said, “and you announce massive bombshells, then you better have some bombshells, there better be something at that press conference other than what we got.”

Even at Newsmax, Trumps favorite new network. Media CEO Christopher Ruddy said he supported Trump legally challenging the ballot counts in decisive battleground states, he also said he believed that Trump should concede once the states certify their votes.

Saving face, Trump isn’t going quietly. Even though the President Elect ( I love saying that) Joe Biden has the megaphone. Trump recently tweeted,98.9 of the Newsmaxx viewers say he shouldn’t concede.

While conservative media, hasn’t joined the mainstream chorus of “Trump is a liar, they ARE quietly saying without facts, Joe Biden is likely to be the next president.

President Trump is currently avoiding the media, no news conferences. He doesn’t want to respond to questions about the Covid 19, the election and the absence of proof of voter fraud. How does he respond to his inability to prove the election was rigged and that his team has failed in nearly thirty states, including many Red States? Its easier to play golf.

Reversing over six million votes in less than 60 Days

In succession, Trumps team failed last week in Michigan, Nevada and Pennsylvania.

Trump said, he will leave the White House,when the electoral college votes for Democratic president-elect Joe Biden, is the closest the outgoing president has come to conceding defeat.

Back door entry to the Court

Trump is talking to red state legislatures beginning with Michigan and Pennsylvania. His plan would require a federal court to invalidate Pennsylvania’s certification of its election results, and then get the state’s General Assembly to agree to send Trump electors to the Electoral College.

That strategy is to cobble together enough successful legal challenges to Biden’s victory in enough states to undo that victory, or, if necessary, get enough Republican-controlled state legislatures to overrule the popular vote wins for Biden and send Trump electors to the Electoral College. As part of that strategy, Trump campaign lawyers have repeatedly made allegations of widespread voting fraud. But they have not provided any evidence of such fraud. (CNBC)

Republicans in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania have sued to stop Certification.

Joe and the two party system

Thank God, Joe Biden is the “President Elect”! After January 20th, I will return to my regularly scheduled programming.

I’ve long believed the country would be better served by more than two political parties. The system is rigged, for the last sixty years the two parties have effectively blocked other pollical parties. They have convinced most Americans if we don’t choose Skippy or Jiff our vote is wasted. For several years, I’ve been searching for alternatives to our current two party system.

I find little difference between the Republicans and Democrats, two parties who’s principle goal is power and status. In countries where there are several political parties, those have to work harder to stay in power.

“We teach people how to treat us”

Imagine, a Progressive Democratic party and a Moderate Republican Party in addition to the Democrats and the Republicans. To maintain power, they would have to earn your vote. Today, Polticians, once in office do not have to work for our vote. We often re-elect incompetence, because the name is familar. We complain about the do nothing Congress and a pass nothing Senate,and yet we re-elect them.

For years, citizen Donald Trump, routinely donated to both parties, he chose the party that better suited his needs for that election period. More often than not, Congress cant agree on a bill, and a Senate that refuse to hear a bill that affects the lives of millions of Americans, who are merely collateral damage.

We don’t have to look far to see examples of governmental inaction.

For several months, Americans have been suffering, due to the pandemic. The images of thousands of Americans waiting in line for food dominate the airways, which doesn’t seem to be an issue for American politicians. For months, nothing has happened, as they continue to argue over period’s and comma’s .

Hunger can weaken the immune system. As the number of unemployed increases and the wait for food grows longer. No one in government has attempted to pass an emergency food assistance package. A clean bill without attachment. A simple bill for food relief package today, and both houses can continue to work towards a stimulus package tomorrow? To simple?

While Joe Biden’s age concerned me, his experience comforted me. I believe Joe Biden, was best candidate for this very divided nation. That’s how he earned my vote. His ability to work the other side of the aisle is well documented. His term in office will be an impossible climb, but he has been here before. Bush left the economy near the brink of disaster. Obama, Biden brought it back. His mountain is steep, Covid, the economy and smoke coming from his side of the aisle. A Democratic civil war is possible by the end of next year are just a few of his challenges.

Trump Trama

I’m not completely free of Trump Trama, but the feeling of hopelessness is gone. I worry about his next irrational move to prove to his base he is a strong leader! Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller, and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark A. Milley, recently persuaded Trump from attacking Iran’s main nuclear site. What Korea? China? Secret’s to Putin? (Yes, I have it bad?-Calling Dr Phil!)

There are new enemies, new scores to be settled. Will he ignore or punish McConnell? Georgia, for turning blue? Will he attempt to punish one or all of the twenty one Republicans senators, who Carl Bernstein says, hates him.

He pardoned Michael Flynn, I suspect he will pardon Roger Stone and others. He will test the courts and attempt to pardon himself.

There is some comfort in knowing without his Megaphone, his distorted reach to his base is limited to a tweet. We know his MO, using the courts against his opponents and if that means invalidating 80 million votes and destroying a Democracy at least he wont have a “L” in his column. His desperation Will intensify as January 20th gets closer. He’s unpredictable, he might ask, the Attorney General to arrest Democrats in Clark, Wayne, and Philadelphia counties.

A few months ago, I thought he was invincible. How could he get away with what he has “gotten away with”? Today, my faith in America and our Democracy has been renewed. It’s going to take a while to heal, but heal we shall……

Despite my fears, I’m going to celebrate Joe Biden’s Victory and dance in the streets of Sacramento

CityFella

Did you ever think you’d live to see grown women in couture arguing about leg amputations?


Whitney Rose, Meredith Marks, Mary Cosby, and Heather Gay on The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City.

Over here at the BuzzFeed News culture desk, Real Housewives is serious business. We’ve been eagerly awaiting the latest entry to the franchise, set in Salt Lake City, and its premiere last week did not disappoint.

Ahead of the second episode, a few of us got together to rewatch the premiere and chat about how we’re feeling about the new Salt Lake City ladies so far — including the one who married her step-grandfather. Let’s dive in!

Robert Cosby Sr. and Mary Cosby

Backstory: Mary’s grandmother asked Mary to marry her step grandfather. The Pentecostal couple has been married for over 20 years.

___________________________________________________________________

Buzzfeed says

“The Real Housewives Of Salt Lake City” Is Already Iconic

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/shannonkeating/real-housewives-of-salt-lake-city-what-to-watch

The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City Wednesdays 10PM Bravo

The State of the Manual Transmission in 2020 and Beyond


Ode To The Manual Transmission - TBK GARAGE

In our ongoing quest to save the manuals, we crunched the numbers to check on the current state of the stick shift, and proselytize a little, too.

From: Car and Driver Aug 2020

The manual transmission is dying, but for less than the cost of a cup of coffee a day . . . No, that won’t do. What we need to save them is a revival, where people like you and me show the world the goodness and demand they remain (or are resurrected) in the cars we love.

When Porsche rolled out an automatic-only 911 GT3 for 2014, customers recoiled, causing the brand to bring back the manual. More of that, friends. It’s not as hopeless as it might seem. While the manual probably won’t return to mass-market cars, trucks, and SUVs, a handful of performance cars have launched that pair exclusively with a stick shift. Spot a manual-only car like the Subaru STI S209, Honda Civic Type R, or Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 and you’ll know the driver is a member of the faith.

We can’t claim that the manual transmission will beat the best automatic on a racetrack, but there’s bliss in executing a perfect upshift or heel-toe downshift. It’s fun to hone a skill, to feel a gearbox snick into gear in your palm as the tach needle kisses redline. Entertainment breeds enthusiasm, enthusiasm brings converts, and an automatic—no matter how great it is on a spreadsheet—can’t deliver that kind of joy.

And so with that in mind, our look at the state of the manual in the year 2020.

The Shifting Market

Buyer’s Choice

Manual transmissions weren’t always an enthusiast niche. Our analysis of a few vehicle segments shows how stick-shift choices have dramatically dwindled, particularly within the past decade.

buyer's choice

Not Dead Yet

Drivers who require a third pedal still have some options. For the 2020 model year, buyers can choose from more than 80 different vehicles that offer a manual transmission.

not dead yet

Stalled Out

The take rate for vehicles equipped with manuals has tanked in the past six years, giving up five points of already meager market share between 2014 and 2019.

stalled out

Peddling the Pedals

If you aren’t yet convinced of the manual transmission’s superiority, perhaps a financial argument will win you over. When it comes to 20th-century performance cars, manual-equipped examples generally retain more of their value than automatic ones [see below]. Plus, a five- or six-speed stick of that era easily outperforms its three- or four-speed slushbox alternative, and it’s a joy to wield.

When it comes to the sports cars of the 2000s, many were sold with fast-shifting but frustratingly jerky and dimwitted single-clutch automated manuals. If a car came with a choice between an automated manual and an actual one, you’ll usually find that the latter now costs more than the former on the used-car market.

We didn’t see an appreciable difference in C7 Corvette prices based on transmission, but we suspect that’s due in part to the relatively high volume of three-pedal C7s that Chevy made and because the eight-speed automatic on 2015-and-later models is excellent. —Tony Quiroga

peddling the pedals

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez was disappointed to hear Attorney Sidney Powell was fired by Trump


Abogada de Trump dice que elecciones fueron manipuladas por Hugo Chávez.
Sidney Powell and Hugo Chavez

The citizens of Venezuela are just learning about the influence their former and very dead President, Hugo Chavez had over the 2020 Presidential Election. To think, from the grave he had the power to change US politics before Donald Trump was ever elected.

Hugo Chavez left this this planet in 2013 or could he held up at some Hilton outside Caracus? (Under the name Dee Dee)

Sixty five year old Sidney Powell has been practising law, for more than 40 years. She resently defended Michael (I said it, but I take it back, maybe.) Flynn.

Thursday……A Star! Sunday, a Firing of Biblical Perporsions!!!!

She has been buring up the convervative airways for the last couple of weeks.

Last thursday she said, a server hosting evidence of voting irregularities was located in Germany AND voting software used by Georgia and other states was created at the direction of late Venezuelan President Hugo Chaven and that votes for Trump were switched to Biden.

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She said, the company, Dominion Voting Systems Corporation a company that sells electronic voting hardware and software. The Denver based company has voting equipment used in several states is accused of changing 8 millions of ballots from Trump to Biden. In a November 14th tweet, the President said 2.7 million votes were changed.

Sidney Powell ,told the media she has serveral witnesses and thousands of pages of evidence. Fox’s, Tucker Carlson said last week he asked Powell for evidence to support her claims. She didnt send any……

How Dare He…..

“When we kept pressing, she got angry and told us to stop contacting her,” Carlson said on his program ‘Tucker Carlson Tonight’’ “When we checked with others around the Trump campaign, people in positions of authority, they also told us Powell had never given them any evidence to prove anything she claimed at the press conference.”

Tucker Carlson, was critcised by viewers and Trump supporters on social media for asking Powell for evidence. He was called a traitor and branded as another example of “Fake News”. On Saturday, Powell joined in, retweeting criticism of Carlson. Her client, Michael Flynn had words for Carlson on Twitter. ‘@TuckerCarlson you are not being genuine in how you represented yourself to @SidneyPowell1 Why are you acting like a “Bell Ringer” and not a real journalist.’

A Hot Saturday Night! (It was Biblical)

A fued with Tucker Carlson, a rapid growing fan base on Twitter. Love from Trump supporters, vowing the election WAS fixed. Attorney, Powell was in demand. ON Newsmax she said, she was going to BLOW UP GEORGIA!

Well, not the state. Sidney Powell vowed to deliver a “biblical” voter fraud case later this week. Involving Georgia’s Republican Govenor Brian Kemp and the state’s Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger as she has evidence they are on take. A pay for play involving the Dominion Voting Systems.”And Mr. Kemp and the secretary of state need to go with it because they’re in on the Dominion scam with their last-minute purchase or reward of a contract to Dominion of $100 million,” said Powell, alleging that Georgia law enforcement should investigate the claim. “We’ve got tons of evidence; it’s so much, it’s hard to pull it all together,”

Sloth Becomes More Sexy With Kettlebells - Page 4 - Scouts - Nerd Fitness  Rebellion

Perhaps TOO hot on Saturday Night………

The Trump campaign has several made for TV conspiracy theories out there to enrage supporters. However, these theories never make their way into the court room. “They think”, “they believe”, “they have heard”.. (without proof) and the courts have said, git out of here!

However, outside of some vague shadowy Democrats no names has been mentioned. Perhaps Ms Powell got carried away. Misspoke! Added a name or two after a large sip of Chardonnay. It’s possible, the Trump Campaign, represented by Sidney Powell could be subject to a lawsuit or three. Dominion Voting Systems, Govenor Kemp and Secretary of State Raffensperger.

Tucker Carlson and the Fake Media may be the least of their problems.

Some believe, that Trump didn’t like her coverage, especially on Tucker Carlson. In a statement Sunday aftertoon, the Trump Pence Campaign……..

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CityFella

Trauma ran away with my childhood: Losing my father to violence forced me to grow up fast


Trauma is normal. So many of us in Baltimore never really get a chance to be young

main article imagea young Scoot Warren and his father (Photo provided by Scott Warren)

By: Scott Warren/Salon.com
Scott Warren was born and raised in Baltimore city. He is a writer, spoken word poet, actor and rap artist pursuing a degree in theatre at UCLA.

I used to love it when my dad would take me for rides on his motorcycle. Even in his mid-forties he had the spirit of a man still in his twenties. He was 6’1″, built like a brick house, with light skin, long locs and a salt and pepper goatee. His somewhat snaggle toothed smile beamed with a light that outshined its flaw. His favorite daily activities included lifting weights and doing push-ups, vibing out to hip-hop and house music, playing “Tekken” on PlayStation, basketball, puffin’ on the finest trees, and, occasionally, partying and hooking up with women half his age. With his vibrant youthfulness, it’s no wonder that he added riding a motorcycle to the list later in life.

Riding on my dad’s motorcycle was the closest thing on Earth to flying on a spaceship. Cutting through the city was fun, but the real adventure came once we hopped on the highway. Right on I-83, my dad and I would zip through traffic like the cars weren’t there. Leaning from side to side, astonished at how gravity hadn’t forced us to the ground yet. The longer the trip, the better. One time we drove to get lunch at a seafood restaurant, went to a bike shop somewhere in Baltimore County, then had to drive back in a rainstorm. Every drop felt like a bee sting on my ten-year-old legs. But even in a slippery situation like that, I had unwavering trust in my dad. I knew he’d never let me get hurt on his watch. Our bond was unbreakable.

In those moments, moving at what felt like a million miles an hour, with my stomach having a butterfly infestation, you couldn’t tell me that I wasn’t flying and that my dad wasn’t the coolest pilot in existence. I always thought that if I held on tight as he said, he’d never leave from my arms, and I could keep him there with me forever. Unfortunately, that forever was short-lived. My dad couldn’t outrace the reaper.

August 3, 2013: bookmarked in my brain as the worst day of my life.

It started off as a normal Saturday morning. I was 11. My dad talked trash while inviting me and my big brother L.B. to play H.O.R.S.E. on the basketball hoop in the driveway. He won and proceeded to rub it in our faces in his usual boastful fashion. Big bro left and I washed up and got ready to go to a wedding with my mom. I didn’t want to go, but my mom insisted, and my dad didn’t try to stop her.

Mom was rushing me so we wouldn’t be late, so I hurried out the door with a quick, “see you later.” I can’t remember if my dad or I said “I love you.” I pray that at least one of us did. I wish I had taken a quick second to hug him.

After the wedding, I expected to see my dad at my performance. I was playing Father Wolf in the production of “Jungle Book the Musical” at the Arena Players theatre camp in West Baltimore — one of the leads — and at my first show that week I had seen a sea of family members in the crowd, thanks to my dad. I was his little star in the making and he thought it was vital that everyone see me shine. At this show, I didn’t see anybody in the audience for me, other than my mom and my Aunt Kelly.

After the show, I took pictures with my camp friends and we said goodbye. My mom hugged me and told me what a great job I had done, but the whole time I could sense that her energy was off. Her excitement seemed muffled. I asked why she and my aunt were the only ones there and she told me everyone was at my grandmother’s house. I knew she was hiding something.

My mom got in the backseat with me as my aunt drove. Adults always ride in the front seat; I was smart enough to realize that my mom had something important to tell me. Without much of a preface, she grabbed me by my shoulders, looked me right in the eyes, and said, “Scott, Dad died.”

It’s crazy how your entire world can be shattered with three words. My body went into immediate shock. We played basketball that morning. I had just heard his voice. How could all that be gone with a few words? I felt an antarctic chill travel through my entire body, mixed with tears and a myriad of indescribable emotions. It felt like something just came down to Earth, ripped my heart out of my chest, then stepped on it for good measure. That thing was called trauma, and it didn’t stop after taking my heart. It took my innocence and ran off with that as well. 

I always knew that Baltimore was famous for its high crime rate, but I never expected those statistics to knock on my door and kick me out of my home. My father was shot several times in our driveway that afternoon, leaving a burgundy stain on the pavement we hooped on just hours before. 

Up to that point, my childhood had been damn near perfect. My dad gave me, the baby boy, everything I asked for: new video games on command, pretty much any Apple product you could think of, a fresh pair of KDs or Lebrons when I saw a new flavor I liked in Mondawmin Mall, you name it. But most importantly, he gave me double that in love. Though he and my mom were divorced, they had a healthy co-parenting relationship and always made sure whatever issues they had with each other never affected the way they raised me. My family was close, and we did all sorts of things together, giving me a strong sense of community and appreciation for family from an early age.

I went to school in the hood in South Baltimore, and neither of my parents lived in the safest parts of the city, but I hadn’t had any bad experiences with inner-city issues. I say this to emphasize that nothing that I experienced in my life up to that point could have prepared me for the trauma I had to cope with in the years that followed. My father’s death taught me to never again think that I’m safe from the many illnesses that plague my city. Anyone can become a victim at any day, any moment, any age.

Over the next few years, my innocence slowly chipped away as I gradually learned the true repercussions murder forces families to face. My father was the glue of the family, and in the time since I’ve noticed how we have gradually become less connected. 

Now, we don’t communicate with my granny as much. After my father passed, I learned that my grandmother had some mental issues caused by past trauma from her childhood as well as her adult life. My father was the one who made sure that she took her medications and would be there for her when she’d go through her episodes, but once he was gone she sank more into depression, and her mood swings and outbursts became much more frequent and extreme. Some of my other relatives tried to take on the responsibility of taking care of her, but eventually they either gave up on her or were driven away.

We used to take family pictures at Target every year. Picked a day when everyone was free, coordinated our colors, and took shots of different combinations of family members to frame and hang up at our separate homes. That tradition has slowly faded away, year after year; I almost forgot about it until I started writing this. 

Money began to slow up, so the whole spoiled thing went away. Thankfully, my mother has always been able to keep a good job so we have never been poor, but after, I had to spend more time alone because she had to work more. Even when she was there, she wasn’t always fully present. I learned later that my mother struggled with clinical depression and anxiety, and was on a personal journey to healing her mind from her own trauma that she experienced growing up in Baltimore. She never expected to be a single mother, and that transition ate away at her emotionally over the years.

Around this time, I slowly began to learn who depression was myself: quiet as a mouse, but cuts deep as a dagger. She started forcing her way into my room every night, seeping deeper and deeper into my psyche, steadily filling my brain with thoughts of pessimism, self-loathing and eventually suicide. 

I can’t say that I wanted to take my own life, or even attempted to, but once my dad passed away I started to contemplate if I wanted to occupy space in this world anymore. At certain points the pain was so deep I thought I might be happier in whatever afterlife he was in. I wasn’t good at sharing my troubles with other people because I didn’t want to be seen as a sob story. I never wanted to be pitied, and I convinced myself that I had to stay strong for my mom’s sake, so I attempted never to appear sad on the surface. I would try my best to suppress my broken spirit, occasionally crying alone in my room when the burden became too heavy to bear. “Traumatized” by Meek Mill, “Sing About Me” by Kendrick Lamar and “REMember” by Mac Miller felt like the only songs that understood what I was going through. Music was the only therapy I accepted at the time. At a certain point in the eleventh grade, I even started drinking from my mom’s liquor cabinet every night, first out of mild curiosity and gradually as a way for me to drown out the demons that liked to bother me in my bed. 

Safe to say that for many years my coping mechanisms weren’t the healthiest. The crazy thing about trauma is that no one can truly tell you how to navigate through it. The most other people can do is let you know they’re there for you, but you can’t force anyone to talk about their problems until they’ve processed it themselves. Some people take a lot more time to grieve than others and everyone’s grieving process is different. Honestly, my most depressing moments weren’t when things were bad, but rather when they were good. The moments he should’ve been there for. 

At my twelfth birthday party, my mom and my brother made sure to do it big for me because my dad always loved to throw me huge parties. At one point my friends and I were in my room partying and suddenly my chest tightened and I felt like I couldn’t breathe. I ran into the back of the basement and tears just started rushing down my cheeks. My friends couldn’t tell what was wrong because a couple of minutes before I had been as happy as could be, but I slowly realized that I felt this way because it was my first birthday without my dad there. That moment started the streak of a lot of “firsts” without him. I started crying at my first performance without him. I cried on my first Father’s Day without him. Over time these firsts became easier to cope with, but never easy to digest. Every big moment in my life will forever be bittersweet without him.

Stories like mine are quite common where I’m from. Not everyone has to live with their father being murdered when they’re 11, but most Black children from Baltimore have to deal with some form of trauma that stays with them through their adolescence and, if not dealt with, their adulthood as well. Violence and related issues have plagued the people of my city for generations, causing trauma to be perpetuated and passed down as family heirlooms, with children being forced to deal with the ugly parts of the world well before they should be exposed to anything in that vein, unconsciously becoming part of a list of unfortunate statistics.

The statistic that impacted me was Baltimore’s abnormal murder rate. In this year alone there have been 277 homicides — 252 of them caused by gun violence. 2019 ended with a whopping 348 homicide victims. That’s one murder for almost every day of the year. About a fourth of them were around my father’s age. If you grow up in Baltimore, you’ve lost someone to gun violence, or know someone who has. I have friends, mentors and relatives with more obituaries than books in their homes. Hearing someone got killed becomes as routine as brushing your teeth in the morning. Being affected so closely by gun violence has made me contemplate my own demise since it happened. I no longer wondered if I would die from a bullet, but rather, when

After my father’s murder, I became part of another statistic — children growing up in single-parent households. According to the Baltimore City Health Department, 64.8% of children lived in single-parent households in 2017. Children growing up without both parental figures also causes trauma. We can lack role models to guide us through the hellish circumstances we’re forced to face outside, which causes us to grow up on our own while learning from our own mistakes in one of America’s most dangerous playgrounds. 

Another statistic stealing mothers and fathers alike is Baltimore’s incarceration rate. In 2015, about 15% of Baltimore’s children had a parent who was incarcerated or on probation — approximately 20,000 children. I have close friends and family who have dealt with this firsthand and can remember clearly how these events left them traumatized while growing up. 

The father of my godbrother and godsister, who are both around my age, spent about five years in and out of prison. We grew up together because our fathers had been best friends. While their father was locked up, the three of us tried our best to remain close, but with both fathers now absent from our lives, it was hard to stay connected while dealing with our respective pains. They dealt with their trauma in almost completely opposite ways. 

My godbrother strived to be independent and self-sufficient as well, but his methods weren’t as positive. We were both the only boys our age in our family, so for a long time we were inseparable, playing video games, riding skateboards, and watching YouTube videos on how to jailbreak our iPhone 5s. At 14, he could charge people to fix their broken iPhones. He excelled at pretty much everything he tried, and I looked up to him for it. After a certain point, though, I could see how his father’s absence impacted him. He began smoking weed more consistently and then later started selling it as well. He wanted to make his own money quickly and started getting accustomed to the lifestyle that came with that. 

Later he started carrying a pistol, and during our sophomore year in high school he got sent to juvie for a grand theft auto charge. I remember us kickin’ it the day he got out and he told me that he couldn’t stand how his father had tried to ridicule him for the things that he’d done when his father had spent a big chunk of his life in prison for doing criminal acts as well. And while I don’t condone all of his choices, I can understand where he’s coming from. Watching his father do the things he did made my godbrother attempt to discover his manhood in similar ways. With his father locked up he didn’t have another male figure helping him decide between right and wrong. If my big brother hadn’t stepped up as my male role model when my father died, I might have gotten into the same things.

All three of us started off as good kids, but trauma led us all down different paths in life. My godsister and I are both attending four-year universities on scholarship. She’s playing softball and working on her degree in biology, while I’m getting my bachelor’s in theatre at UCLA. My godbrother just got released from jail about a month ago — his second arrest since the first time he was locked up. I don’t look down on him in any way or see myself as better than him because of where we both are in life. I realize that having more guidance after suffering from harsh trauma helped me to make more beneficial decisions for my life. I hope that with his newfound freedom, he begins to take steps toward dealing with his own deep-rooted trauma, to grow into more of a light for the future while leaving behind the darkness of the past. I hope for that for all the kids like me whose childhoods were shaped by trauma. 

I lost my innocence before I finished playing with toys, and I’m not alone. When it comes to cities like mine, Black kids end up getting dealt a bad hand more often than not. These traumatic circumstances heavily impact our emotional and mental health, and without the proper guidance and care, many of us end up taking a lot of left turns trying to get on the right track. Our environments influence our composition without us having a say in it and that forces us to grow up before we get to fully experience being a kid. I was blessed enough to have people in my life who grabbed my hand and walked me through my dark times with a flashlight, but stories like mine are the exception, not the rule. People can be so quick to judge kids like my godbrother, but they wouldn’t know what to do if they had to face the same obstacles we did at such an early age.

At times I mourn the me who once was and fight to get back that inner child. But I know that my trauma has shaped me into who I am today and continues to teach me that life can be gone in the blink of an eye so I have to make an impact while I’m still here. I can’t heal the trauma of others or provide a one-size-fits-all solution for it. I just hope that me telling my story can help someone while they’re experiencing the pain within their own.

SCOTT WARREN

Re-Count those Black and Latino votes


Fifty percent of Republican voters currently believe the 2020 Presidential Election was rigged. President Trump told us the election was rigged last spring.

Earlier this week, Trump called a member of Wayne County’s Board of Canvassers after a contentious meeting in which she first refused, and then agreed, to certify election results from the state’s largest county.She subsequently released an affidavit seeking to “rescind” her vote for certification — a move that the secretary of state’s office said was impossible.

Three Strikes and your out!

GIF and graph: Angel Hernandez's awful 'strike' - CBSSports.com

The Trump campaign struck out three times on Thursday after his team decided to withdraw its lawsuit in Michigan which had sought to stop the certification of ballots in Wayne County.

In Pennsylvania, the Trump campaign lost its appeal in the Court of Common Pleas of a decision by the Bucks County Board of Elections to allow the count of certain mail-in ballots there.

In Arizona, the Maricopa County Court dismissed a lawsuit by the state Republican Party that had sought to expand an audit of Arizona’s election results, and also denied a bid to have Maricopa County barred from certifying its election results.

Georgia, the attorney L. Lin Wood saw a federal judge, who was appointed by Trump last year, reject his request to block the state from certifying its vote tally, Judge Steven Grimberg said he was unwilling to block the certification of millions of votes in Georgia, saying it “would breed confusion and potential disenfranchisement.” Grimberg said the claims from the campaign had “no basis either in fact or law,” according to a New York Times reporter covering the hearing.

Enter Good ole RUDY Giuliani

Rudy Giuliani's Hair Dye Seems to Sweat Off in Presser After Court Hearing  | PEOPLE.com
I’m Dying here!

The New York Times says the Trump Campaign is paying the former Mayor of New York $20,000 a week.

Yesterday, at the Republican National Committee headquarters, rambling Rudy dripped in front of the media. Under the hot lights, he had pages of facts and various conspiracy theories ,unsubstantiated allegation of a vast international conspiracy to fix the election for Joe Biden, featuring George Soros, Antifa, the media, and the dead (2013) Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chávez.

Countries and social media that were in on the fix. And then you have those corrupt counties that just happen to have majorities of people of color voting, cheating the Prez. Maricopa (Phoenix) County in Arizona, Wayne (Detroit) County in Michigan, Philadelphia County in Pennsylvania. . “The only surprise I would have found in this is if Philadelphia hadn’t cheated,” he said. “You could say the same thing about Detroit.” Giuliani said that in Philadelphia, voters from Camden, a heavily Black and Latino city across the river in New Jersey, illegally cast votes for Biden. In Michigan, it was a truck full of ballots marked for Biden that arrived after observers thought all the Republican poll watchers had gone home, Giuliani said.

File:As seen on tv.jpg - Wikipedia

On TV, the President’s extensize legal team has hundreds of papers of doucumented fraud. From the media to countries conspring to fix the election. However, little if any of the evidence makes it into the courtrooms, where the price of distortion is high.

Trump Phones a State

GIF by The Voice - Find & Share on GIPHY

As nearly two hundred thousand Americans contract the CoronaVirus a day. President Trump has invited the leaders of Michigan’s Republican-controlled state legislature to meet him in Washington to overturn the results of an election he lost.

Trump lost Michigan by a wide margin: At present, he trails President-Elect Joe Biden in the state by 154,000 votes. Earlier this week, the state’s Republican Senate majority leader said an effort to have legislators throw out election results was “not going to happen.”

But the president now appears to be using the full weight of his office to challenge the election results by pressuring Republican leaders not to certify the election results.

Top Michigan Republican state lawmakers released a statement after meeting with President Donald Trump at the White House expressing fidelity to the election process and that the process should be free from intimidation.

Maybe the Third Time is Charm

Earlier today in Pennsylvania, the Trump campaign once again, says election officials in Democratic strongholds of the state scheming to steal the election with thousands of invalid mail and absentee ballots that Republican observers were blocked from checking. The Trump campaign asked the court to throw out the questioned ballots out or the ENTIRE election out. This is his third time Trump have been in front of the Pennsylvania courts. This filing, like the other two provides no specific evidence. His attorneys want a federal judge to block the state from certifying the election to give them time to search for evidence.

On Wednesday, Trump asked the same of Nevada, asking the state to check Clark (Las Vegas) County where voters, used a ballot processing system that was susceptible to fraud. The complaint asks the court to declare the President the winner in Nevada or disallow the certification of any presidential electors from the state.

Donald Trumps focus on the big cities and the Black and Latino voters is misplaced. He team hasn’t questioned a single rural county in the nation. However, where Trump lost was the suburbs.

This was a lot of words about a man who refuse to accept defeat. A man who could care less about the country and the people (including his supporters) praying for the families. Donald Trump Not a word or acknowledgment to the people he represent. Trumps Presidency is the side story.

CityFella

“CrazyTown”General Motors 1000hp Hummer EV is just a couple of ticks slower than the Corvette


GMC Hummer EV revealed, promises Wrangler-beating off-road ability, zero  emissions for $112,595 - Roadshow
2022 GMC Hummer EV

Imagine being at an AM/PM gas station near the Interstate and a family of five exits the store with giant sluprees and family sized bags of chip. Parked in the station, is the Generals most powerful petro car, the Z51 Chevrolet Corvette.

Here's The 2020 Corvette Z51 On Public Roads, Camo-Free | GM Authority
2020 Chevrolet Z51 Corvette

As the two vehicles enter the Interstate, the Vette hits warp speed. In his rearview mirror is the Hummer EV, filled with a family slurping along. Imagine?

GM says the Vette will hit 60 in a blistering 2.8 seconds and the Hummer EV in 3.0 seconds.

Since the beginning of the year,General Motors has been hinting they where going to introduce an electric showstopper.

New GMC Hummer EV Lease Deals Incentives Round Rock TX | Nyle Maxwell GMC

The roots of the Hummer or (Humvee-High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle) dates back to the early 80’s when the Army determained they needed AM General (American Motor Corporation) to build a larger vehicle than the Jeep. The Humvee could be called, Jeeps little BIG brother

High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) | Military.com

In 1992, AM General began marketing the HMMWV to the civilian market under the Hummer brand. In 1999 GM acquired the rights to the brand and continued production of the original civilian Hummer as the H1 until June 2006

1996 Hummer H1 with a Turbo Duramax V8 – Engine Swap Depot
1996 Hummer H1

The Hummer represented excess, it was big, gainly and thirsty with the H1 swallowing 11 miles to the gallon on the highway. GM unsuccessfully try to sell Hummer during the ecomomic turndown in 2008. Late January, images of the Hummer began circluating.

2022 GMC Hummer EV

The new Hummer will have a GMC badge

2022 GMC Hummer EV

GM boasts that the Hummer EV will offer four-wheel steering (crab walk), an adaptive air suspension, an underbody armor system to protect the battery for off-roading. The technical highlights are even more important, including 350+ miles of range, a double-stack 24-module battery estimated at about 200 kilowatt-hours, and the capability to gain 100 miles of range in just 10 minutes of DC fast charging.

2022 GMC Hummer EV
Front Storage for Frunk

Crab Walk?

The 2022 GMC Hummer EV is slated to go on sale late next year and the first versions will not be cheap, how about $122,595.00.

If you want a cheaper version you’ll need to wait until 2024, when the entry price for the Hummer will be $79,000.

Trucks is the new EV (Electric Vehicle) battleground. For good reason. In America, its trucks!!! They are more profitable than cars and SUV’s. For more than 30 years, the Ford F-150 is the BEST selling vehicle in the US. Electric Vehicle’s cost consiberably less to build. Labor cost are 30% lower and EV’s has fewer parts. The BILLION dollar question who will be first to market.

CityFella

The First Covid Thanksgiving


Thanksgiving 2020: How to say no in the name of Covid - CNN

Sacramento Covid Cases have increased by 400%. Last week there were over a million new cases nationwide bringing the infection rate to over 11 million in the US. Experts recommend staying home this Thanksgiving. As traveling increases, so does your risk of being exposed to the coronavirus and of possibly spreading it to others.

AAA predicts Thanksgiving 2020 will have the lowest travel volume in four years. It is predicted 2.4 million Americans will travel by air, a 48% decline from 2019. 48 million Americans will travel by car.

Last week, we conducted a small poll on social media, here in Sacramento. (143 participants)

14%* of the people said they were visiting family out of town

22% said family members were joining them here in Sacramento

44%* say they celebrating Thankgiving with their immediate family.

* Unlike a traditional poll, the response was public. If this was a blind poll, we belive the first question would be higher and the third question would be lower.

The more cases at your destination, the more likely you are to get infected during travel and spread the virus to others when you return,” the CDC cautions.

If you are traveling here are a few suggestions:

Airports, train stations and rest stops are places where people are at risk of being exposed to the virus and it can be difficult to stay six feet away from others, as health experts strongly recommend. At airports, for example, travelers must wait in security lines and gather at gates before boarding their planes.

Once on a plane, where you sit matters. “There’s actually research on this, believe it or not: You want to sit at the window,” Dr. George Rutherford, epidemiologist and infectious diseases expert at UC San Francisco, said during a recent campus town hall. “And you want to sit as far away from the toilets as much as possible, which would minimize how often you’re near passengers walking past you…You want to be as far away from that action as possible.”Rutherford also recommended choosing airlines that are not selling the middle seats in rows to increase distancing between passengers. “I think that’s important,” he said.

“Most viruses and other germs do not spread easily on flights because of how air circulates and is filtered on airplanes,” the CDC says. “However, social distancing is difficult on crowded flights, and sitting within six feet of others, sometimes for hours, may increase your risk of getting COVID-19.”

Taxi’s or Rideshares

The CDC recommends to avoid riding with unmasked drivers or passengers; avoid touching surfaces; don’t accept free water bottles; sit as far as possible from the driver; and ask the driver to improve ventilation by opening the windows or setting the air ventilation system on non-recirculation mode, the agency said.

Car Travel

“Don’t share vehicles with people you don’t live with. Vehicles are small enclosed spaces where COVID-19 can spread easily between people. “If you must share a vehicle, try to ride with the same people each time, make sure everyone wears a face covering and open the windows to maximize outdoor air circulation as much as you can.

Public Transit

Those taking public transit  should avoid touching surfaces, travel during non-peak hours and stay at least six feet from other travelers whenever possible. “Stay out of crowded spaces when possible, especially at transit stations and stops,” the CDC says.

College Students

Rutherford suggested that college students not return home for the holidays this winter. But if that’s not possible, he suggested having them get tested before they depart and tested again at home with about three days between tests. “One single test is not going to do it. You got to get tested twice,”

Self Quarantine

Should you travel out of town it is recommended that you self quarantine for 14 days. Staying at home as much as possible, and not leaving to go to the grocery store or to restaurants. Instead, people in quarantine should order food to be delivered.

Covid Testing

A single negative test is not proof that someone is not infected. If a person is tested shortly after becoming infected and before the virus has reproduced enough copies of itself, a test could fail to detect the virus and produce a false negative result.

CityFella


California on Lockdown?


Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Monday that most California counties will soon be in the state’s most restrictive COVID-19 tier amid a surge in cases and that the state is considering a curfew.

“California is pulling an emergency brake,” he said in announcing that 41 counties, which comprise over 94% of the state’s population, will be in the purple tier, effective Tuesday. Last week, 13 counties were in the state’s most restrictive tier.Advertisement

“We are sounding the alarm,” Newsom said in a statement. “California is experiencing the fastest increase in cases we have seen yet — faster than what we experienced at the outset of the pandemic or even this summer. The spread of COVID-19, if left unchecked, could quickly overwhelm our health care system and lead to catastrophic outcomes.”

When counties are in the purple tier, indoor operations for places like museums, houses of worship, gyms and restaurants are not allowed. When counties move into the less restrictive red tier, they can resume indoor operations at several businesses — but with modifications.



Newsom said that more tier announcements will be made as necessary and that counties can move back more than one tier at a time. The state is “not waiting the extra day or extra week,” he said.

California is also strengthening its face covering guidance to require people to wear a mask whenever outside their home, with limited exceptions.

The state is also weighing the possibility of a curfew.

“Now, before you jump in terms of your mindset and whether that’s a good idea or a bad idea, we are assessing that as well,” he said. “There are a lot of cities, large and small all across the country, that also are promoting certain kinds of curfews. All of that’s being assessed.”Play Video

Newsom cited the surge in coronavirus cases when rolling out the beefed-up restrictions. The state’s positivity rate is 4.6%, up from 3% on Oct. 29. Newsom said Californians should not be “misled” by having a lower testing positivity rate than the national rate of 9.8%, saying “we don’t compare ourselves” to the national numbers.

California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly also spoke during Newsom’s briefing and warned people in purple or red-tier counties not to gather indoors with other households.

“The data we are seeing is very concerning. We are in the midst of a surge, and time is of the essence. Every day matters and every decision matters,” Ghaly said in a statement. “Personal decisions are critical, and I am imploring every Californian to stay home if they can, wear a mask whenever they leave their homes, limit mixing, practice physical distancing and wash their hands.”Play Video

The tier changes and message to avoid indoor gatherings come on the heels of Newsom admitting that he should not have attended a dinner party at the famed French Laundry in Napa County.

“I made a bad mistake. Instead of sitting down, I should have stood up,” Newsom said Monday.

KCRA

The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City Goes Where No Housewives has gone before!


RHOSLC': Fact check on 'The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City' premiere -  Deseret News

Every TV genre eventually reaches is peak. Twenty years ago it was Talk Shows, a few years ago it was Judge Shows.

While low cost reality shows continue to be a staple on cable, alarm bells are going off over at Bravo. Ratings of the Housewives franchises is dropping. Cast members are being shuffled and fired.

Fourteen years ago, The Real Housewives of Orange County Premiered . Today, there are nearly 25 Housewives franchises worldwide including 10 in the US.

Anyone who has followed this blog through the years, knows we like reality TV. Especially the housewives, New York the gold standard of the franchise and ATLANTA!! A few years ago, we slowly stopped reviewing the shows. Yes there we liked the castmates but it became too predictable. Despite its popularity on this blog, it grew painful to watch and review.

The formula is the same city to city. Following the lives of seemingly wealthy, white or black women. With one small exception in Atlanta, segregation is the norm. The format has grown stale, the rating aren’t what they once were. This season we will see more color and younger cast members.

Enter Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City? Will we have to pray during the commercial breaks? Salt Lake?

Well my friends, instead of praying you may need to repent!! Cause there is SIN in Salt Lake!

You want black? They got black.? You want Jews?, They got Jews? You want Gays? They got Gays, yes, my brothers and my sisters in Salt Lake one so far! You want whites? Well this is Salt Lake City! You want Polynesian? Well, they think she’s Black. Do you want a woman, who married her grandmothers husband? Well, we got dat 2?

This is not the Housewives your used to seeing. The ladies, in New York, Atlanta, Dallas, Orange County, Potomac, and other cities would NEVER have breakfast with their children at Taco Bell or any fast food restaurant they like, EVERY DAY!

You gotta a Mormon women, who can rap and dates black men. We learned about Mormonism in away that is uncomfortable but not insulting to the religion. (so far)

The Bio’s of each of these women is fascinating.

Bravo has something here that you wont find in any of its other franchises. (so far) I’m not sure if I will review Salt Lake this season. But If last night episode is indication of things to come. I will know where Ill be on Wednesday nights.

CityFella

The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City Wednesday, 9PM Bravo

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