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            Saturday, May 31, 2008

            Bye Bye Trinity!!!

            Friday, May 30, 2008

            AB.com Rates The Cable News Talkin' Heads: CNN Edition

            , back when CNN was going in heavy on that Race In America grizzly. Dude went to my alma mater, chose the dumbest, more ignorant, and poorly informed students to put on air, edited their comments, and framed them in a way that made it sound like my school was full of America-hatin' racists. Then again, TJ went to the University of Arkansas, so clearly he isn't qualified to discuss HBCUs objectively. I know some of you ladies like him cause he's light-skinnded and used to date Chili from TLC, but keep it in perspective.

            Paul Begala - Watching this dude get absolutely ethered by Donna Brazille a few weeks back was must-see TV. It's one thing to talk recklessly while trying to defend your candidate of choice. It's quite another to play right into those Chris Kattan SNL impersonations.

            Candy Crowley - Another consummate pro, Candy doesn't really deserve being on this list. But since I'm being superficial anyway, why not? Seriously has anyone else noticed that rain, sleet, or snow, Candy Crowley is always reporting from outdoors? During the Iowa primary, when it had to be in the low-teens, if not worse, they had the nerve to make her stand outside in hypothermia inducing temps. Meanwhile, the equally good Suzanne Malveaux gets to hold court in Hawaii and Puerto Rico. Somebody explain that one for me? Stand up for yourself and demand a desk gig, Candy! I'm sure Malveaux gets the plum gigs because she looks nicer, but you deserve better.

            Gloria Borger - I had to save the best for last of course. Borger's "I'm Independent, I just happen to like Clinton" routine wore thin after Super Tuesday. You often get the impression she's just disagreeing with Martin and Simmons simply for the sake of disagreement. Would someone can her already?

            Diss-Honorable Mention: Jamie McIntyre, Tonie Harris, Don Lemon, Alex Castellanos

            Question: Assuming you made it to the end of this post, am I pretty much spot-on with these ratings or losin' my mind? Do I need to buy a premium cable package or what?

            If you're clueless about who all these folks are, peep for photos and other general stalkerdom fandom.

            Thursday, May 29, 2008

            We Owned The 80's - Episode One : Gregory Abbott

            went triple wood, and Abbott faded to relative obscurity, only bearing mention by third-rate comedians (Arsenio Hall's "Gregory Abbott World Tour 89" joke is still kinda funny) and first-rate bloggers (that would be yours truly). He continues to release music, primarily singles, and "also moved somewhat into placement of music for films and television as well as working on film projects of his own", according to the Wiki.

            AB's PR-Bullsh*t-To-Common-Sense Translation: He didn't save his "Shake You Down" chips, and prolly lives in a van down by the river.

            I sure hope Souja Boy is somewhere takin' notes.

            [Question: You got another We Owned The 80's post you wanna see here? Hit me you-know-where. The Request Line is open.]

            Wednesday, May 28, 2008

            Kobe Bryant Is A Jackass

            Kobe Jumps Over A Car! Computer Trick, Cool Trick, or Irresponsible?!?? [AB.com]

            When Bad Movies Happen To Good Casts - Episode One : Anaconda

            , it's cause I am. And on that note, I present the first in a who-knows-how-often series called When Bad Movies Happen To Good Casts. It's pretty much exactly what it sounds like. Enjoy.]

            So, I'm flippin' channels the other night, and guess what movie's on TNT for the 193,239th time?

            That's right, Anaconda.

            For those without basic cable, this 1998 movie is about a documentary crew that travels down the Amazon searching for a long-lost Indian tribe, only to wind up in deep snake crap when they take in a stranded hunter who eventually hijacks the boat and leads them on a wild goose chase for a record-breaking 40-foot green anaconda.

            Here's the trailer.

            This movie, with the exception of the scene where Ice Cube got squeezed out by the snake was pretty lousy. The CGI effects were mad cheesy, the plot was predictable, it wasn't even intentionally campy. It pretty much just sucked.

            But one thing I caught on my 182th involuntary viewing of this movie was just how loaded the cast was. You had pre-J-Lo Jennifer Lopez doing her usual combo of poorly recited lines and gratuitous butt shots. Ice Cube played a tough talking, yet bumbling ex-con photographer, but all I could see was Doughboy Goes To The Rainforest. You also had the serially underrated John Voight as the greedy villain, Luke Wilson in his now-typical slacker role, Eric Stoltz as J-Lo's token white boyfriend, and even Skinemax All-Star Kari Wuhrer as token bimbette.

            I'm not sayin' all these folks are great actors, but when Owen Wilson is you're 5th stringer, it's fair the say the movie shouldn't suck as royally as it did.

            For such an amazingly sucky movie, this film incredibly spawned a non-straight-to-DVD sequel, the equally lecherous Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid. By the time the second installment rolled around in 2004, Lopez was at the height of her superstardom, Ice Cube had graduated to kiddie flicks, and Wilson was finally bigger than his brother. It goes without saying that all the aforementioned had better things to do than appear in this flop, which had arguably better CGI effects, but could do no better than chitlin' circuit leads like Salli Richardson and Morris Chesnut.

            Just when you thought it was safe to head back to Blockbuster, there's some news. The Anacondas saga continues with not one, but two more straight-to-DVD installments in 2008 and 09', starring none other than David Hasselhoff.

            I'm already loading up my Netflix queue.

            Question: Did you think Anaconda blew chunks as much as I did, or was it borderline campy genius? Do you have any future nominees for When Bad Movies Happen To Good Casts?

            Tuesday, May 27, 2008

            Did You Get Your Reparations Check Yet?

            [1] The funny thing is, you're not actually getting anything "back". You're actually receiving an advance on the money you would otherwise get next year.

            [2] Anybody played this yet for PS3? How is it?

            Monday, May 26, 2008

            [1] Who else is tired of that phrase? Dang.

            [2] I told ya'll I wasn't mentioning "that woman" anymore.

            Sunday, May 25, 2008

            The iNTERNETS CELEBRITIES Present: CheckMate!!!

            Peep my man ' latest short film.

            Peep more shorts from the .

            Friday, May 23, 2008

            Why Do TV One And BET Suck So Badly!?!?

            top that one.

            Judging by the hits and comments though, I'd say you guys didn't mind me getting all philosophical, but to me it's definitely more fun just talkin' about , is the network's talk-radio sister, boasting solid on-air talent like Joe Madison, Warren Ballentine, Bernie McCain, and despite how you feel about him, Rebb'n Al. There's even quality sports programming like The2LiveStews and Marc Gray. I don't know if you get it in your neck of the woods, but the DC based station stays locked on my radio 24/7. It's legitimately good stuff, so clearly the talent is there.

            That being the case, just how damn hard would it be to take these same folks, plus a few "field reporters" and throw them in front of the camera each night for a half hour? I mean, really, build a cheap set. Wheel in a few of these guys and some rotating pundits. Ask them for their spin on the day's news developments. You don't even need to provide any actual "news", just opinions. It would be like a black version of The McLaughlin Group. It would be cheap. It would be easy. Did I say it would be cheap, already? And most of all, it would be relevant since these opinions and voices don't even exist on the other mainstream news networks.[3]

            I mean, seriously Cathy Hughes, how hard would that be?

            I'm not holding my breath, because even though the show would be dirt cheap, parent company RadioOne has bigger fiscal issues to worry about. With their stock price dipping into penny stock territory and with Cathy and her son in trouble for giving themselves exorbitant pay raises in spite of, they could probably be excused for having bigger fish to fry. Or not.

            If there's any silver lining, it's that JC Watts (yes, that JC Watts) recently announced the planned launch of a new 24 hour TV network, The Black Television News Channel, aimed at black cable news watchers. This station will supposedly provide a diverse array of black commentators, as well as true "news" programming focusing on issues pertinent to African Americans, as well as The Motherland. That all sounds a little ambitious to me, and I sure hope these Willie E. Gary-sized ambitions don't end up as another replay of The Black Family Channel when all's said and done. We'll have to wait and see, but at least it's promising on paper. Just one small issue though.

            The station doesn't debut until 2009.

            How timely.

            Question: Is it unrealistic to expect some level of news programming from the "black networks" or at they justified in their "all-entertainment all-the-time" missions? Do you even think this sort of media outlet is necessary? Where do you usually turn (other than blogs) for political and social commentary to more or less reflects your viewpoints? Do you even watch TV One or BET?

            [A] I'm givin' a whole case of Cyber CapriSuns to the first person who can tell me the origin of this obscure hip hop quotable. And don't bother Googlin' it either, it ain't out there. This one's for the true heads.

            [1] Before you ask, yeah. I'll be watching, but only because that sorta stuff is blogger-gold.

            [2] Singletary Says is the one notable exception. Now there's a timely and relevant show.

            [3] God bless poor Roland Martin, who is about the only voice of even remote reason on CNN. Jamal Simmons seems pretty sensible too. I bet he's angling for that Obama Press Secretary gig.

            Thursday, May 22, 2008

            , but even I didn't realize things were this bad until I ran across this recent LA Times article.

            "Everybody Hates Chris" is a show with a predominantly African American cast in an era when black-themed series appear to be at a crossroads. This season's departure of the CW's long-running "Girlfriends" leaves only two network shows in prime time -- both struggling on the CW --that revolve around black casts: "Everybody Hates Chris" and the "Girlfriends" spinoff "The Game."

            Meanwhile, on the cable side, the numbers are only slightly better. There's ABC Family's “Lincoln Heights," a one-hour drama about a black family, and TBS' "Tyler Perry's House of Payne," a highly rated sitcom. And last month, MyNetwork TV launched “Under One Roof," a comedy starring rapper Flavor Flav that was met with a chorus of negative reviews.

            The issue of fewer African American stars and shows has provoked pointed concern from minority groups. In particular, Vic Bulluck, president of the Hollywood chapter of the NAACP, decries the further shrinking of television's historically limited racial diversity.

            "We're very concerned about and disappointed at the lack of representation," said Bulluck. "It's something that we've been discussing with all the networks for a while, ever since the 'Bernie Mac' show left Fox. With 'Girlfriends' now leaving, the situation becomes a lot more urgent. The situation as it stands now is unacceptable."

            However, lower numbers of primarily black shows may also signal something completely different -- a growing dissolution of the medium's color line. Instead of being ignored, blacks may have merely become more deeply integrated and accepted into mainstream culture, thus eliminating the need for segregated series.
            Before you ask, yeah, I realize this is all pretty trivial in the grand scheme of things[1]. But I guess this all just reinforces my oft noted assertion that "black TV" is a thing of the past. I told ya'll "Under One Roof" wouldn't make it to Memorial Day, but believe it or not, the show's still on. I wouldn't know personally, I only watched about 3 minutes of a single episode before I could no longer tolerate it. I hear "Lincoln Heights" is decent, but it looks like a tween' show. "Everybody Hates Chris" is great, but you wonder if it's going to lose steam, "Bernie Mac Show"-style as the kids get too old for their roles. "The Game" is just awful. Did anyone even watch "Girlfriends" after the canned Toni Childs? And don't even get me started on "Tyler Perry's House of Payne".

            Basically, the cubbard is pretty darned bare.

            I can't say who's to blame for this, if anyone. The article goes on to argue that having blacks "integrated" into traditional TV shows like "Grey's Anatomy", "ER", those "CSI" shows, and my personal favorite, "Private Practice" is progress, as opposed to segregating them on unwatchable networks like CW/WB/UPN/WhateverIt'sCalled. I guess I can somewhat understand that logic, but I don't really agree with it.

            While it's great to have black actors on mainstream shows like "Grey's", these folks are usually still just inconsequential "background" characters there to provide a loving support and a warm shoulder for the white characters around whom the shows usually revolve. Given the choice, I'd prolly take "What's Happenin'?" over that arrangement anyday.[2]

            Question: Do you think the lack of "black" shows is a sign of progress or cause for concern?

            [1] I mean, it's not like Black America couldn't stand a few more hours at the library and less time in front of Tell-A-Lie-Vision. I'm just sayin'.

            [2] Speaking of which, how about this blast from the past...

            Wednesday, May 21, 2008

            Who Cares If Tyrone Can't Read. Jacob Can!

            Tuesday, May 20, 2008

            Are HBCUs Obsolete!?!?

            Monday, May 19, 2008

            Did The NAACP Finally Get Something Right?!?

            [1] Yeah, . The show sucks now, but I did watch once or twice.

            [2] Notice to anyone visiting for the first time. I don't just talk a good game, I actually do deliver. So please spare me the sideways comments unless you've checked this site out first.

            Sunday, May 18, 2008

            , or droppin' somethin' in my PayPal commissary (link below on right).

            Either that, or I'm gonna have to go back to hustlin'. Take your pick.

            Since this post was completely pointless, and you and I both know I'll never drop $10k on a camera, I figured I'd flip the script and pose a question to you guys.

            Question: If you had a $10,000 windfall, what completely frivolous item would you blow it all on? Two stipulations: you have to spend the money on yourself, and you cannot save or otherwise invest it.

            [1] Seriously, they've been talking about "making downtown more liveable" since the late 70's.

            Friday, May 16, 2008

            AB.com Guest Post: Thembi's New "Lady Laws" For Young Black Women

            , is just that and then some. As with any Guest Post, be good and show some love you know where.]

            Living right at the imaginary line where Philadelphia goes from a college city to being straight up hood, I can say that I've seen my share of young ladies acting a fool, and if they were behaving themselves I couldn't tell which were little girls playing with toy babies and which were actually pushing their own teen pregnancy products in strollers down the block. What's crazy is that unlike AB, who is neatly settled in a nuclear family and has accepted that he is (gasp!) an adult, I have regressed into my teenage years by getting airbrushed nails, dancing at parties like nobody is watching, and shimmying into outfits straight from Bare Feet and other stores in which I have no business. I am proof that whatever ladyghettononsense you may engage in, you can be ok. But guess what – I had to act right FIRST before I earned that right, and I did so by following these rules, all of which were implicit in my upbringing. So I have a few words of advice . . .

            1. Stay Off Of The Pole. And For That Matter, Out Of Videos. I haven't decided whether or not I have a real problem with strippers or strip clubs in general - who am I to say that men shouldn't be allowed to gather in a public place and expose their inability to be fully intimate with their spouses by fondling and ogling some stray woman? What I do know is that YOU shouldn't be one of said strays. Letting your body be drool-worthy for a room full of men cheapens and degrades you, and in the long run is not at all worth the money (no matter how pressed you are for cash). You never know who will be in that club, and when the "I saw Keisha on the pole!" story is told, your future boss or uncle who was "just in there with his boys" won't be the shamed one, you will! If you like showing off your sexy side, which all of us should, save it for the right man, who will love enjoying all of the freaknasty you have inside of you without having to pay for it on a dollar-by-dollar basis. Someone will always do it, just don't let that someone be you. The same goes for being in videos. That is NOT a profession and will not lead to any sort of meaningful career, modeling or otherwise. A ho is a ho, root word whore, meaning sex for sale, and your stuff is priceless. Got it?

            2. Go Where No Blackgirl Has Gone Before. The obvious interpretation of the title of my blog is that I think that I'm some Jesus figure. Not so. Actually, the very weekend before I started blogging, loyal commenter Aaliyah was at an almost all-white party filled with beefy frat boys and was asked to do a kegstand. At her side were two other friends of mine, one of which said to her "What would Thembi do?" The obvious answer – go where no black girl has gone before and do the freaking keg stand! It really IS ok to be you, whether it's as trivial as going snowboarding or as major as pursing a PhD in Greek Mythology. Do the most random or ridiculous things you feel like doing even if you're not technically supposed to do them, and do them at all times. The same goes for rock concerts, tattoo conventions, playing the accordion, or whatever! Being a blackgirl comes with a unique set of baggage - on the one hand, we're accustomed to being a minority in almost any situation a million times over. On the other hand, we feel like there are certain places and activities that aren't "ok" for us. Forget all of that, risk ostracization, and trailblaze for us all. We can't keep saying "But blackgirls don't _______" or else we'll never do anything at all. Be YOU, regardless of whatever skin tone, sorority, thickness, neighborhood, or whatever you may be a part of. None of it is as fresh as plain old blackgirl you.

            3. DON'T Get Pregnant, DO Have A Baby. When people say "Life Is Short," they really mean that life is short – when you're unencumbered. Life is really, really long when you're tied down to some dude who seemed great when you were sixteen years old but hasn't even made it through his baby boy years when it's time to send junior off to middle school. In fact, it can even seem too long when you start to calculate the potential unpaid child support, the number of times you tried to "make it work for the baby", and the time you'll spend child rearin' instead of actually growing up, getting degrees, and making a name for yourself. Not to say you can't have a baby early and have it all turn out rosy in the end, but howsabout having children with someone who can actually agree to be with you in a family unit for the long haul whether or not you just happen to get pregnant? Sidenote: It should go without saying, but why even risk diseases by not protecting yourself? A baby is not the only gift that keeps on giving, you know.

            4. Know Your Own Hair.
            Black women have more hair options than almost anyone else, and we exercise them to the fullest. But even those of use who switch from weave to ponytail and from blonde to red would never dare to wear our natural hair in public. I can spend the whole day running errands and not see one blackgirl without a perm, and the same goes for watching television or opening a magazine. What is up with that? Granted, I went natural the easy way with the Philly soul thing being at my heart and a head of naps that never really took a perm quite right, but what pains me is when another blackgirl says to me "I love your hair! How long did it take to grow? I could never get my hair to be that texture. How did you do it?" The reality of it is, most of us don't even know what is growing out of our own heads, and its very sad. Not one other group of people on this planet can say the same. It's fine if you settle on a perm or some braids or even a Jheri curl after exploring your options, just get to the point where you can say that you know what your natural hair even looks and feels like before you aspire to be Beyonce by default.

            5. Get Out Of Town.
            I've met young women who have never left their cities, seen the ocean, or even set foot in another zip code. It's not always cheap, and it's not always fun, but the sooner you start traveling the better. In fact, this Lady Law applies to almost everyone of every race and gender. Make a list of dream locations and get started as soon as possible. The more time you spend in the same surroundings the less you understand about the world, and for that matter, what the world thinks of you – you'll learn that you're not trapped after all. Besides, you can't conquer the world if you don't know what's out there, and it should be your goal to conquer it! Let the trailer trash of West Virginia confuse Mexicans with Spaniards and believe that Africa is a country北京体彩网官方网站 and not a continent. Learn your world because it is yours to learn, even if you have to do so only an inch at a time.

            6. Don't Get Called Out of Your Name. I'm not on this whole "we were queens" tip, but I know that none of us should be called or let ourselves be called any of the following: bitch, ho, trick, and on and on and on. Don't sing along with songs about "makin' it rain" unless it's for the sake of irony. Don't even participate in anything misogynistic unless you know it's only a joke to you, and even then don't ever pay for it. Recognize that just like when he talks about selling crack you're not selling crack, that when some rapper talks about his hoes he doesn't mean you, download that song from Limewire, and keep it moving. And lastly, never, EVER call yourself anyone's "baby's momma." My first encounter with an ex's grown BM involved her introducing herself to someone as such, and as much evidence as I may have already had that she was feeble-minded, giving herself that label sealed the deal. Don't be that broad.

            7. Act White. I won't bother justifying this term because you all know just what I mean. Talk white by speaking the King's English, using full sentences, and the most intricate vocabulary you can muster. Act white by doing well in school, participating in any activity that suits you, and playing musical instruments. Don't worry, you will never, ever actually BE white. If it were possible, don't you think that all of those people who were lynched and beaten back in the day would have white-acted their way out of it?

            8. Get What You Deserve Without Worrying About What He Deserves. This is a weird one. All too often women say "I'm not giving it up to him, he doesn't deserve it!" But what do YOU want? While it's not smart to just go giving it up to any old body, getting caught up in the idea that your sexual desires should be based on what men deserve is the exact opposite of feminism. If we only had sex when men deserved it we would be a bunch of bitter, mean, deprived wenches. Learning and maintaining the balance between withstanding pressure from dudes and getting yours is part of becoming a real woman.

            9. Don't Eat That Mess. Our country北京体彩网官方网站 is facing an obesity epidemic, yadda yadda blah blah. But it's all so very real, ladies, and I'm as guilty as the next chick. The thing is, you can get fat and out of shape eating regular food and that's damning enough. It's the Chinese Store chicken wings and fries (saltpepperketchup or no), grape soda, chips, quarter water, or other mess. If you can believe for one second that AIDS or crack was planted in the black community to kill us, what do you think Crown Fried Chicken is here for? And your body may be able to metabolize it before you hit 25, but after that it's just a quick ride to Lane Bryant once you get addicted, so don't do it.

            10. Be A Lady. I have never been the most ladylike of blackgirls and most women like me can trace that to our upbringings, but it's really very simple. It's very natural for us to speak loudly, but it's more powerful when used in small doses, just like hot sauce. Making that lip smack before you start speaking is not cute either, especially if it's followed by a "weeeeeeeeaaaaal," twist of your neck, and then whatever it is that you have to say. By doing that, not only have you butchered the word "well," but whatever you have to say is eclipsed by that attempt to get attention and gear up like you need prep time just to speak your mind. Swearing every other word may be cute to around-the-way boys but if you ever want to get off of the block (see Lady Law #5), it won't do you any good. Although every once in a while another female may make your blood boil, fighting is not cute – just think, aren't you way too pretty to get into a fight and get some gash across your face? I don't think I need to caution young blackgirls on good grooming because we're good at that, but do you really need to let all of that unravel just because some girl is talking about you? What does that even really mean? Like Katt Williams says,

            [1] Thanks to TiffInHouston for sending this along.