Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Fact versus Fiction - Movies

"You like those white movies...." - My homie Gangsta D

America, we are at war! Nope I'm not talking about the War against Terror in Iraq. I'm not talking about the escalating situation in Afghanistan. I'm talking about your favorite author, the Honest Man versus the public that thinks I don't support my African-American films. That could not be farther from the truth. I support SOME African-American films. To prove my point, I will list 10 movies featuring either a predominantly black cast or directed by a black director I've seen or watched in the past 10 years. and actually would watch more than once...

  1. The Best Man
  2. The Wood
  3. Stomp the Yard
  4. Paid in Full
  5. Drumline
  6. Barbershop 1
  7. Barbershop 2
  8. Ray
  9. 25th Hour
  10. Inside Man
The last two qualify because they were directed by Spike Lee :-). You notice timeless classics like Soul Plane, First Sunday, or any Tyler Perry didn't make the cut. That wasn't a mistake. I don't go see movies just because they have black folks in it. I see movies that look like they have a decent script and quality actors. When I see a trailer featuring Master P getting his hustle on in the hood selling bad cell phones, my mind doesn't go, wow that just screams Oscar. Hell not even a SAG award. My mind goes bad film, bad acting, and not even TBS late night worthy. I'll save my money for the Ghetto Dope CD lol.

People clown me and say how can I watch something stupid like Old School and not say 3 Strikes. For starters those are horrible comparisons. That's like comparing Carly Fiorina and Mother Theresa. Two totally different categories. Good comedy versus bad comedy. There are plenty of white movies out that belong in the bad comedy category. Mall Cop, The New Guy, and any Rob Schneider movie come to mind. I don't see a trailer like "Meet the Spartans" and go 'Dude I'm soo there.' Like in the previous paragraph, it has to catch my interest first for me to even think about dropping $8 dollars for it.

And trust me, I'm not always right about my movie selections. I've shelled out money for Leonard Part 6, Blankman, Batman Forever, and other stupid movies I wish someone would have smacked me before going in to see. But about 85% of the time, my Spider sense tingles and the bad movie vibe kicks in.

The Honest Man just wanted to let his African American readers know that I donate money to the cause. But the only way I'm watching certain films is if my wife uses the same jedi mind trick on me that I use on her to get out of seeing the Johnson Family vacations of the movie world.

Today's Lesson

I've seen almost every Will Smith movie in a theater. Doesn't that count :-)

Monday, January 26, 2009

Bauer Supremacy

"The following takes place between 9pm and 10pm (cue long hand ticking)"

I'm a HUGE fan of 24. I still remember watching the first episode in Fall 2001, where old girl jumped out of the plane and the joint blew up soon after. From there, pure dopeness was set in motion. Moles. Government Conspiracy. Workplace Tension. It had all kinds of drama. And it broke new ground from having a black president to a president being a terrorist to the current season of having a female president.. The show had it all. Like wine, each season seemed to get better with time. That is until I saw Season 6. I don't know if it was the Writer's Strike, the writers weren't getting any drawers, or what but it was gah-bage.

Season 7 is currently airing now and here was my initial thought after episode 1. The show was starting to feel like Nas' career in the late 90s. It wasn't that Nas released completely wack albums (except for Nastradamus) but it was like his career stalled until Jigga hit upside the head with 'Takeover.' It lit a fire under Nas and his career has been on the up since. Somebody needed to hit the '24' writers with a writer's version of Takeover and light a fire. The first two episodes were not bad, definitely better than last season but still, it's was kinda missing that umph.

But then the following night and then the next 3 episodes, it was like the CSI writers wrote a script taking digs at the 24 writers, and then the 24 writers were ready with the Ether. I mean the following was noted by yours truly:

  • You had weird chick versus weirder chick (Garafolo vs Chloe)
  • Is it me or does it look like Bill has been hitting the bottle?
  • And why does he know the answers to all the questions ("Yes I knew he was in trouble...")
  • I'm still trying to get over Billy the Director from Entourage being a IT techie.
  • Will Agent Walker stop saying "I have to make this right"
  • Tell me you didn't think of Bourne Ultimatum when Jack hotwired that car and drove it off the 2nd floor
  • Why do white people go ape shit whenever another white person tells them they are reckless? (see Secretary of defense calling the Prez reckless)
  • Tony looking like he's gonna go postal everytime someone mentions Michelle's name
  • The head FBI man frontin' like he's really concerned about getting Agent Walker back safely when he knows he just want to get the drawers
We're on episode 7 already and it's been mucho better than Season 6 completely. Now for those who know me, Waldini does an annual "Shoot 'Em in the Kneecaps" award for 24 characters that annoy me to no end and need to be shot for the dumbest thing (Agent Walker is an early nomination for her constant woe is me crap). Regardless from time to time you will find me talking about my shows (24, Heroes, 30 Rock, the Office) so consider yourself warned.

Today's Lesson

24, thanks for Ether part 2 (sniff) you were missed. Just don't make me regret letting you back into my life by bringing Kim into the picture.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Talking 'bout my generation

Do you know who Plaxico Burress is? If not, quick story, he's a wide receiver that plays for the New York Giants. He got into trouble late last year for illegally carrying a firearm. The dumb part was he got caught because he shot himself. Anyway, his team played the Eagles in a playoff game and during the game, a clip of Plax was shown on the sidelines. One commentator said they could have used Burress today and his counterpart agreed but said Plax is part of that "me first generation that put himself before his team." Me first generation eh? As opposed to who?

Generation X is defined as people born between 1961 and 1981. Plaxico and myself are part of this generation. Our generation has been criticized for being more about "I" instead of "we" by the preceding generation aka the Baby Boomers. That generation supposedly breathes the value of hard work, loyalty, and honesty or other good positive terms our generation lacks. But it's like they are Stevie Wonder when it comes to their generation and the Honest man is hear to cure that blindness.

Our country currently is facing its' worst economic times since the Great Depression. Since the late 90s, we've had the dot.com bust, 2 recessions ('02 and now), and more economic scandals than Oprah's had diets (which is a lot). And you know who's caused this? Sure as hell not my generation. That's right readers, it's the "hard working" Baby Boomer generation!

Look at the scandals that have rocked this nation in this decade. Tyco. Worldcom. AIG. And my favorite, the mighty Enron. Just a few to wet your lips because there are many many more. But you know who was the head at each of these companies. Again, you guessed it, the Baby boomers. They cooked books, overstated earnings, destroyed countless 401ks and pension plans, etc. I mean you literally thought it was a bad dream but nope it was a hard reality. The same people saying I'm lazy and spoiled, are illegally taking money because they are too lazy to come up with ways to increase revenue and are accustomed to their spoiled lifestyle of private jets and Carribean vacations. But we're the selfish ones right?

Let's focus on an individual since you think I'm talking out my ass. By now, you know about Bernie Madoff and his get rich quick Ponzi scheme that screwed HUNDREDS of investors out of BILLIONS of dollars. This asshole knew what he was doing was wrong yet continued to do it because he was consumed by greed and thought he was untouchable. And when he got busted, cat expressed little remorse over what he did. Guess what generation he's a part of :-)

Their trifleness has created a get mine mentality in our generation. I mean why should we aim to work hard for 30 or so years at a company when there is no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow (for the dumb, that's 401K and/or pension). Or better yet, have someone take that pot of gold in a matter of seconds because they decided working hard was for fools. They told my mom that if you work hard now, it will pay off later. Shit those days are over. Working hard now means you will only work harder later and longer. It's about working smart. And working smart means if you have to jump ship a few times to make that salary grow by 30% or more, then get yours pimp! I mean it's the American way.

Today's Lesson

Don't hate on us because you created this fucked up situation we're in today. We just trying to get our moolah now before the well runs dry.

Friday, January 16, 2009

The Honorable Dr. Martin Christopher Wallace

DISCLAIMER: This was a public service announcement from honest views, unlimited. The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of the staff and management of Black America, but hopefully one day they will (thanks Rev Dr).

Hmm, the film "Notorious" is opening today, on MLK and Inauguration weekend no less. Are you skipping work so you can be the first one on the block to claim to see Biggie's biopic? I had a minor interest in seeing it but then started thinking about a few things. Why am I in a rush to see a movie about a dead rapper? I've heard all reasonings from celebrating his legacy to making sure he's remembered correctly. My initial thoughts are like his song that he sampled R Kelly's voice..."IT'S UNNNBEELLIIIAVABLLE". My drawn out musings are below

Item #1: I'm struggling to understand the hoopla surrounding Biggie. I liked him as much as any of my favorite rappers but that's all he was. Period. Finish. End of Story. I'm being brainwashed to believe a former drug dealer, who infamously said he even sold crack to pregnant mothers, turned to rap because it made him more famous is supposedly a martyr. A martyr for who? The dumb and lazy who think trying to be Calvin from the corner at Mickey D's is beneath them? This movie inspires me like "8 mile" and "Get Rich or Die Trying" (ok I'm stretching on the latter). I saw those on TV and I will be seeing this on TV. That is unless my bootleg comes first.

Item #2: This just in, Lil Kim's not happy with how she is portrayed in the movie. Funny, she should be happen they used an actual human's face instead of using one of those Planet of the Apes mask on somebody that would truly be a lifelike image of her. Or maybe the movie doesn't show her enough on her back or knees for her liking. Considering you are at 14:59 of your 15 minutes of fame, you should be grateful you are a featured mistress. Look at Charli Baltimore, they don't have anyone playing her and she ain't complaining.

Item #3: Why would you open "Notorious" on MLK weekend? The two men had MUCH different viewpoints on working together and the end result. I have a (bad) dream where other (bad) decisions will be made like releasing Tupac's lifestory during Black History Month 2010 or debuting Puffy's biography on Christmas Day 2011 to pair it with Jesus' Birthday. Careful he might remix "Amazing Grace" just for the ignorant who will think Diddy is talking about a stripper he met in Cancun. Back to Frank White, if it was coincidence, then fine I'm ok with the opening but if on purpose, for the love of anything that's right in the world, WHY? The only way Biggie and Martin belong in a sentence is if the latter ends with Lawrence (peep Big's guest appearance on Season 4).

Today's Lesson

I'm wondering what worse, this or having a MLK Pajammy Jam thrown in Martin's honor (true story, happened my freshman year in college). Seeing booties jiggle probably was not the message Dr. King had in mind when he fought for civil rights. But damn Sheniqua was looking mighty fine that evening. CHHUUUUCCCHHH.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

You're gonna miss my lovin' (you're gonna miss, your'e gonna miss)

This weekend we will be officially inducting our new President, the man that we all know and love, Missstaahh BAAARAAACKKKK OBBAAAMMAMA. Hmm, wonder who I endorsed last November ;-).

Anyway, I couldn't help but think about George Jr's magical legacy. And then I came across this top 25 Bushisms provided by the great folks at the Slate. The entire list is priceless but I will share some of my favorites below. No long explanation or today's lesson today. Just savor these jewels.

"You teach a child to read, and he or her will be able to pass a literacy test.''

"I know how hard it is for you to put food on your family."

"There's an old saying in Tennessee—I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee—that says, fool me once, shame on—shame on you. Fool me—you can't get fooled again."

"One of the great things about books is sometimes there are some fantastic pictures."

"They misunderestimated me."

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Now watch me YUUUAHHH

Soulja Boy off in this hoe
Watch me lean and watch me rock
Super man dat hoe
Then watch me crank dat robocop
Super fresh, now watch me jock
jocking on them haterz mayn
When I do dat Soulja Boy
I lean to the left and crank dat thang

This is what I'm supposed to believe is the future of Hip Hop. Seriously, this is considered the passing of the torch. The words don't evoke memories of a young Jay-Z. Hell they don't even conjure up memories of a young Special Ed. But this is what the new generation is talking about. And from the looks of things, they don't have much to say.

I know it's easy to blame Soulja Boy for the lack of creativity in rap but in all honesty it's not his fault entirely. There are a host of others out there like Young Berg, Ace Hood, and a slew of others that are lyrically failing too. Before you go, you just bitter because you miss the Golden Era of Hip-Hop, consider the following albums and artists below.

  • Doggystyle - '93 - Snoop 21
  • People's Instinstive Travels - '89 - Q Tip, Phife - 19
  • Straight Outta Compton - '88 - Ice Cube - 19
  • Live from the BBQ - '92 - Nas - 19
  • Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik - '94 - Big Boi, Andre 3000 - 19
Take a strong look at how old they were when their albums dropped. Think about where they are at now in their careers. There are more on here (LL Cool J, MC Lyte) that I could have dropped but I did not want to give you the full knockout blow. There are more bad young up and coming rappers today than good. It's not a fact but a very strong opinion. I can't think of any in their teens and the only early twenties rappers that come to mind are Charles Hamilton, Lil Wayne, Cool Kids, Kidz in the Hall, and Lupe Fiasco. That's a sad state we are in.

Don't give me this shit about these new school cats being too young to be that lyrical. Hell even Shaheim (aka the Rugged Child) was dropping dope shit at 13. The only difference between being 17 and say 19 is that you can vote and get drafted for the military. The above worked on their craft constantly and evolved with the times.

What's wrong with the new generation? It's not lack of things to write about. They have more access to things than ever with the evolution of technology. It's laziness. Let's just call it what it is. They are putting their efforts into the marketing and/or beatmaking aspect of Hip Hop but forgetting about lyrical part of it. It's no surprise that Soulja Boy's second album is struggling mighty hard or no one is playing a Young Berg record. Shit is GAHBAGE.

I haven't given up on the young people yet because there are artists out there (like the ones I mentioned) that do give a damn about clever wordplay. But it's like the opposite of '88 where it was difficult to find completely horrible lyrics compared to say halfway decent lyrics.

Today's Lesson

Stop being lazy and go write some rhymes that will make the Honest man go damn, that's hot, and I will remember it years later. I mean hell, I still remember Puppy Chow saying on the "Where the Party at (remix)", Got girls 21, wishin they were fourteen. BRILLIANT. Now watch me YUUUAHHHH

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Hypocrisy of a Hypocrite

"You gold-teeth-gold-chain-wearin', fried-chicken-and-biscuit-eatin', monkey, ape, baboon, big thigh, fast-runnin', high-jumpin', spear-chuckin', three-hundred-and-sixty-degree-basketball-dunkin', titsoon, spade, moulinyan. Take your filthy slice of pizza and go the fuck back to Africa" - Pino from "Do The Right Thing"

I was watching an old episode of the Sopranos the other day. It was one where Tony hired a black housekeeper/nurse to take care of his mother. Junior Soprano made a comment to one of the boys and said "Can you believe this guy, he hires a shine for his mother?" It got me wondering, why I am watching this show when they repeatedly make derogatory comments about black people.

The Sopranos. The Godfather. Mean Streets. Goodfellas. True Romance. Classic movies and television yes but upon further review, you'll find that there are scenes where black folks are discussed as animals or cannibals that eat their own. Or my favorite, whenever one Italian hurts another Italian, their cover-up is say "Tell the cops two jigs messed Paulie up!" What the hell did we do to Italian people? It's like we personally made them slaves or something and now they have to put us down at every opportunity possible. I do my part to help them by buying pizza and eating spaghetti. But I don't see them eating Bojangles or drinking Kool-Aid.

Here's the complex thing. Even with certain scenes striking a nerve, I still watch these shows. The voice in my head is calling me hypocrite and I'm sobbing going "yea I really am." The easiest thing to do is to turn this stuff off. But I'm like Tyrone Biggums, I'm addicted to this mess and I don't know how to quit. If there were a $25000 Italian Mafia giveaway, I'd probably be first in line. It's like I let my people down by supporting folks who hate on us when and where possible. Especially when some of these folks go out of their way to make derogatory comments about us.

Readers, I need you to be my brother's keeper like G-Money was to Nino, sans the bullet in the head. I need you to slap me out of this mode and have me execute a hit on my DVDs like Nino executed a hit on those Italian mafiaso for stepping to him. Maybe that will get me to watch more positive things like "The Learning Tree" or Tyler Perry movies.

Aw hell, who am I kidding, once a fiend, always a fiend. I'm going to get me 2 slices of Sal's Famous. Forgive me :-(

Today's Lesson

I don't even know what to tell you. Did you really learn anything today besides I hate the way we're treated in Italian entertainment but I don't do anything about it? Would it helped if I went to Little Italy, screamed "RAAAADIOOOO RAHHHEEEEMMM", and threw a trash can through the window...maybe not but it's a start.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

The Government vs Larry Flynt

This just in, the Porn Industry has joined the trend in asking the government for a bailout. Here's a snippet below:

Another major American industry is asking for assistance as the global financial crisis continues: Hustler publisher Larry Flynt and Girls Gone Wild CEO Joe Francis said Wednesday they will request that Congress allocate $5 billion for a bailout of the adult entertainment industry.

The first thought that came to mind was are you fucking serious? I saw the Crippled Crusader's biopic and was convinced he had the right to publish Hustler (I wonder why LOL). But a bailout? To do what, get more boob jobs on shorties so they pose a little more for the camera. How does help a consumer like me? Does that mean I get a 3 for 1 when I purchase DVDs at my neighborhood video store? Or that I get extra pages in that next copy of Penthouse? Or even better, I get a shot at the champ, Ms Jenna Jameson herself? The questions are rhetorical and you know that shit ain't happening.

This industry is the latest in a long line of industries to ask for a bailout (see automobile, newspaper). You see where this is headed right? I'm pretty sure charitable foundations are going to start asking for bailouts because donations aren't coming as fast as they want to. Or maybe the homeless people are going to get together and rally for a bailout because people like me are only giving Shoeless Joe 50 cents instead of a dollar.

Sarcasm aside, I find it hard to take this seriously since these guys themselves said they are not in any real financial danger. Sadly, it's becoming the new trend to declare "I need a bailout" and hope the government swoops in like Superman to save your day. The thing is though, at some point these legal mobsters are going to want their money back (with interest) and in this case, I doubt they will accept sex in the champagne room as a payment.

Today's Lesson

Larry, Joe switch your game up and come up with new ways to drive revenue. Maybe a they cross their businesses and form "Hustler Gone Wild". Corny name, yes but a chance at making extra moolah. Ch-ching!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Things that make you go hmmm Vol. 1

From time to time the Honest Man will post interesting articles, reports, or letters I find. The one below is just bananas and it's appropriately titled "Crack Whore Mom". A snippet is below but you can read the whole article at this site.

"I'm a 34-year-old straight woman living with a 32-year-old straight man. His daughter is 2, and I am the only mother she has ever known. (Her real mother is a crack whore somewhere.) My boyfriend tells me he loves me, but it doesn't feel like he wants to spend any time with me. I pay the rent and am the only person in our household with a full-time job. When I get home, I want to relax. He wants to go out because he has been sitting at home all day. If he hasn't been at home, he has been running around with his friends. This pisses me off, and I am not afraid to tell him so. His response? "You're just jealous because you have to work!" Damn right I'm jealous! Also, I do all the cooking and don't get any help with cleanup or housework.

Other factors include my 13-year-old son, who has had trouble adjusting to a baby in the house; my boyfriend's outstanding warrants; and the fact that I have desperately wanted another baby for 10 years. What on earth should I do"

Waldini's Take - You want to have a child with a cat that has outstanding warrants? Shouldn't that be a sign that something is completely wrong with that situation? Damn your son's worries about another baby, he (and you) need to be worried that your boyfriend doesn't set your ass up to take a fall over some ignorant half cooked scam.

Readers, if you really need me to spell out today's lesson, then I wish the same fucked up situation above to you too.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

A Change is gonna come

We're a few weeks away from inaugurating our first minority president. Folks have been clamoring for me to talk about President-elect (for now) Obama's historical win. And since I am the People's Champion, Waldini is here to give the People what they want.

Waldini's Take - I supported Barack from jump. Not when he we announced he was running for president. Not when it was evident that Hilary had no shot at overtaking him in the Democratic primary. Not when it was evident that McCain was about to get slaughtered on Election Night. I'm talking about when he spoke at the Democratic National Convention in 2004 and the media started discussing him as a serious 2008 presidential candidate. It was just the way he conveyed his message: clear, concise, and genuine. I feel those qualities are lacking in quite a few of our politicians, regardless of party affliation, race, or gender. By no means is Barack perfect. I felt sometimes during the Presidential debates, he was long winded and talked in circles. But in terms of portraying who I think who is best to lead the country during these troubled times, hands down he's the better choice over a dude who's already suffered 2 heart attacks.

I believe my President should be smarter than me. When I look at Barack's background versus McCain's, education STRONGLY ways in favor of Obama. Not only did Barack obtain undergrad and graduate degrees from Columbia and Harvard, he excelled in his studies. Look at McCain's record, he finished at the bottom of his Navy school class, but supposedly it was because his teacher didn't like him. That bullshit didn't fly when I used to tell my mom that story and it doesn't fly with me.

From a vice presidential sidekick perspective, again it was intelligent move on Barack's part.On one side, one had an old white man on his side, and on the other a younger white female. What did I say was the key to success in an earlier post :-)? Yep, you need an old white man. Yeah, I'm aware McCain fits this description but he went for the cheap vote by pulling in an unknown person. The public was cool until she opened her mouth. Then it became What The Fuck. Game. Match. Point. Obama.

Think about this, if Barack had chosen Hilary as his VP running mate, old white males would have been staring at a black man and white woman on their screen, going this combo's going to ruin me. You don't think Barack's party thought about that. America's ready for change but only in baby steps. No white man in the mix equals no chance in hell. Smart move President-elect Obama!

And for those reading who think I voted for Barack Obama because he's black and I'm black, think again. For starters, he's biracial, I'm not. Second, if I were voting for him just because he was black, then why didn't Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton secure at least the Democratic nomination when they ran (think about it).

Today's Lesson

To put this in perspective, my grandfather is 87 years old. That means he lived during the times of colored only restrooms, not being served food because of his skin color, and other random acts of racism. My son is almost 2, goes to an integrated school, and has his diaper changed by white women. God Bless America!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year's Resolutions

It's 2009. You've spent New Year's getting dolled up, meeting up with friends, and getting shit faced drunk while saying "Goodbye 2008". You woke up today feeling pretty good about yourself, probably gained 10 pounds eating a delicious dinner, and now you are wondering what your resolutions for this year will be. But the Honest man is here to play Slick Rick to your Salley from the Valley's Mother and tell you "STOP LYING."

I find it amusing that people set New Year's resolutions for themselves. Usually it involves losing weight, becoming a better person, getting their finances in order, etc. Some individuals believe that with the snap of their fingers, all the so called stuff they were guilty of doing wrong, they will immediately change all that in the New Year. WRONG, WRONG, and more WRONG.

Let's start with the weight thing. If you already guilty of having Betty Crocker or Uncle Ben as a girlfriend or boyfriend, what makes you think you are going to dump them for someone better like Jenny Craig?!?! It's more like you will have an affair with Jenny but ultimately come back to Betty because her loving is the sweetest thing you ever known. Stop trying to flirt with other girls and just marry Betty. At the end of the day, it's she that you really want. Spare me this crap about trying to find another woman or man and own up. Your destiny lies with them. I'm sure the Green Giant is already spoken for anyway.

The other one that I constantly hear is becoming a better person. Whether it's being nicer to people, making new friends, being a better baby's daddy, it's irrelevant. I'm from the thinking that if you've been a certain way for say 10 or more years, it's pretty difficult to just magically change that in a span of months. If people did little things that annoyed the shit out of you, I highly doubt you are going to overlook when trying to be nicer. For example, I hate waiting for folks and usually give you 5-10 minutes before I leave you. Do you honestly think I'm going to change in the New Year and be more patient? Ok you got me, I might wait 15 minutes instead of 10 but the result will be the same. I'm going to leave and you're going to say Waldini is a dick.

I the Honest Man, do resolve to continue bringing you the truth and nothing but it in 2009. I'm not committing to losing weight, kicking this drinking habit, or being nice. But I am resolved to helping you understand what you should and should not do. Fair enough? Great, now go rip up that resolution's list and let's crack a brew together. CHEERS!

Today's Lesson

Happy New Year readers! I'm already in rare form and it's been less than 24 hours in 2009. Ain't no future in your frontin so stop shamming because real recognize real and right now you looking a little unfamiliar.

Happy New Year's