Friday, May 28, 2004

newest edition to my site :)

I'm such a blog freak, always toying around with my blog on some level. Check out my newest section located on the right under the nutshell; I call it the "Quote of the moment" and it shall provide me with endless enjoyment. The quote listed there now was found and highlighted in Ideas of the Great Philosophers which I brought last night (link on the previous post). It is in reference to Aristotle's philosophy on the highest form of happiness.

"The human mind's highest ability is to think; hence contemplation, the activity of the mind, is the source of man's highest joy."

When I read that, I found that line to be one of the truest things I have ever read, but then my mind started wondering...yes, it sounds true..but what actually is truth? Has anyone heard the phrase, "ignorance is bliss? " and is not bliss the highest form of joy? It went on & on. Needlesss to say, I had to take a breather from reading because I am obviously on Philosophy. Maybe I will start thumbing through my other book. Hee hee.

three day weekend here i come !

I just love holiday weekends, and memorial day is no exception. But, through all the joyous festivities of bar-b-ques (including a much needed day off from work), we shouldn't forget the true meaning behind the day. In essence, Memorial Day a day of remembrance for all the fallen US soldiers which have given their lives for our freedom and protection. Therefore, in true American fashion, I will pay homage to all the fallen US soldiers (from the Civil War times to the present) in the form of drinking massive quantities of alcohol, indulging in the eating red meat at family and friends bar-b-ques, and perhaps even watching a little of America's pastime,baseball, as I pass out on the couch. Not that I will be doing it all weekend. I also plan on doing a lot of leisure reading and quality time with my honey :)

Talking about reading, I am so happy because while I was digging through all my books and various other crap at my house (to figure what I wanted to sell at my yard sale); lo and behold, I found an ancient and decrepit $20 gift certificate to Barnes and Noble that I thought I had lost over 4 years ago ( was still valid-whoo hoo). It was a thoughtful Christmas gift from my old boss. And, if you do not know already, I have and will always be a book worm. Therefore, after I commenced in doing my little happy dance, me & M made a trip out to Barnes and Nobles to cash in on my little treasure.

Being the intellectual I am, I simply love bookstores. I can just aimlessly wander down each aisle of the store to find something in value in everything: from the bargain bin, to self help, to poetry/literature, computers, to cookbooks section. Anyhow, I was considering getting The Namesake : A Novel but, I wanted something more deep and thought provoking (something to make me read a paragraph over and over while saying "WOAH"). Needless to say, I was truly craving something more than light summer reading. I found two great books that I can't wait to get started reading. Because I am in Latino centric mode lately, I brought a mammoth of a book dubbed Herencia: The Anthology of Hispanic Literature of the United States (Recovering the U.S. Hispanic Literary Heritage). I thumbed through it and it features wonderful writers and poets such as Cherrie Moraga, Piri Thomas, Pedro Pietri, and Isabel Allende. Its a whopping 644 pages long and should keep me busy for a while. Also, I scored a great philosophy book in the Discount bin called Ideas of the Great Philosophers. Its' a pretty all encompassing book that touches on all the major points of the great philosophers from Socrates, and Aristotle (my personal favorite), to Machiavelli, Marx, Hegel, etc. I plan on reading them on & off all weekend. Ahhh...nothing like books to put a smile on my face.

Thursday, May 27, 2004

when craigslist goes bad

I love craigslist to death, but there are always people who have to screw up a good thing, and this is no exception. Needless to say, some of the people on craigslist are very screwed up individuals. For instance, today’s posting on Chicago's version in the free section, there was a woman who offered her vagina: (and I quote)

"Available now! Free to someone who actually has a chance to use it! One fully functioning vagina. Over 25 years old but (unfortunately) has never been, um, driven. Well-maintained, all original components, fluid levels normal, has always had yearly tune-ups conducted by a licensed and certified professional. I've had this baby my entire life and have always taken great care of it, but I'm getting tired of all the hassle when I never get to put it to good use. Act now and I'll throw in the entire kit--cervix, uterus, ovaries, fallopian tubes--all for free! Please, take this thing off my hands (literally)!!"

Alrighty then.

Next up, are the mean individuals that actually post something on there to sell or give away for free, then have the audacity to stand you up when you come knocking at their door. Talk about bad karma. C'mon man. I traveled all the way from the other side of the city for XYZ...the least you can do is open the door and tell me it's no longer available and to go away. Geesh. Don't leave me standing around for 15 minutes like a fool for nothing. Next time that happens...i shall email them this appropriate email card. :)

various rambles

I was fumbling around BBC online and came across this horrific news clip regarding a new controversial procedure of Face Transplants!!! Not face lifts, but the actual process of taking another persons face and replacing your own. OUCH!!!!

I also came across this new form of protesting which used Apple's Ipod advertising image to get its point across. How creative.

On a personal note, I think its time to bust out my old Zippo lighter and learn some of these nifty lighter tricks

the word we live in...

I couldn't sleep last night for anything in the world and because of that, I am feeling particularly lymphatic today. No amounts of green tea or music can revive me as I slump here at my desk, half asleep. Let's hope the boss doesn't notice I have absolutely nothing to do this morning.

I seem to be overwhelmed with thoughts and emotions lately, but no words can express the amounts of sadness I feel seeing the news on tv or on the internet. From raising gas prices, to yet more unnecessary deaths in Iraq and possibly more terrorist activity in store for us similar to 9/11. Is there no such thing as good news anymore? My head is swirling and my heart…well my heart is heavily laden with sadness for the state of the world. I especially have been feeling sorry for the soldiers stationed out in Iraq. Don't they just look like the saddest people in the world? With all the talk of prison abuse, they have been given the short stick in more ways then one. They have one of the most merciless jobs ever imaginable and in their short life they have seen so much, especially in the past year. Sigh.

I have been trying to meditate before I go to bed, somehow trying to cleanse and rid myself from all this negative energy and sadness. But my efforts have been in vain as the harsh reality of this scary world never ceases to stop.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004


Yesterday night I worked out REALLY HARD, only to pig out on White Castle Burgers and indulge in fruity alchohol straight out the bottle with my cousin Dee at Montrose Beach at the lake. Oh well, so much for those extra situps! But I simply love lake Michigan; though its dirty and green, it is the only real water mass we have in Chicago. Anyhow, going to the lake is an old past time me & Dee have. Since we are getting older we don't do it as much at all, so I have to covet the time we do. And it was beautiful last night: perfectly breezy, not too warm nor too cold, and the waves were coming in very peacefully. It was all grand and awesome...until we were bombarded by rats!! Imagine my surprise to see the queen of all rats squeak her way past me in the middle of the night. There were at least two...Not mice, but rats circling around us in what can only be descibed as battle formation. Talk about creepy. They scared the hell out of us both and sent us running for our lives to my car...damn rats.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

rain rain go away !!

To say its been rainy in Chi-town lately is an understatement. It's been unbearably gloomy, wet, and humid the last week or two. Where is the sun ? That's what I want to know.

Monday, May 24, 2004

an unique alternative to fossil fuels?

Whoa. This article was really refreshing and revolutionary in terms of finding creative ways to save money on gas and help out the environment in the process(this is the first I heard of this how about you?). Diesel Fuel Drivers Eye Vegetable Oil As Cheap Fuel. How cool is that ? I can totally see myself cruising in my car on vegetable oil. Too bad my car doesn't run on Diesel. :(

If I had money I would buy myself one of the Hybrid cars, but unfortunately I am saving for a house and just recently paid off my Corolla. Needless to say, I am enjoying not having a car payment and truthfully, I love my car! It's the only car I ever known to actually fix itself (no lie). Truth is, I will probably drive my ride until it falls to a tired heap and refuses to move anymore. Then, I will buy a hybrid.

"in this great future you can't forget your past" ~ Bob Marley ~

This weekend was like a walk down memory lane for me. My parents were doing some spring cleaning, and in the process, brought out scores of old photo albums, santa clause letters I wrote as a child, and various drawings & cards...I mean mounds upon mounds of stuff. It brought back sooo many long forgotten memories that I didn't even know existed. It was really strange to see baby pictures of me, with diapers on and a bottle in my mouth; I can't believe I was ever that small and precious!!

While browsing through the all pictures and drawings of my past, so many emotions came over me. I realized that 1) I had a great childhood ( I was always happy, smiling and posing all crazy for the camera), 2) I really DO bare an uncanny resemblance to my mother when she was younger (its scary..does that mean I'm doomed to become her?!!), and most importantly, 3) I realized how time really does fly (at times I was like "WOW! I remember that day - and I was only 3 years old). If anything this weekend was positive just for those revelations on my past.

On the other hand, It's really a shame that my family doesn't take pictures anymore. I realized how many great memories that have recently gone by without any type of picture being taken. Now that everyone in the family is all grown up, it seems that we're all just are too busy to immortalize Christmas, birthdays, and bar-b-ques like we used to. What’s even sadder is that I have 2 cameras (3 if you count my poloraid) and they are just gathering dust in the corner of my room. So, being the forward thinker that I am, I will dust them off and use photography as one of my many outlets for creativity...maybe in the process I can somehow capture the true essence of the future's past and make a few memories I can look back on along the way.

Friday, May 21, 2004

can it be friday? yes...yes it can!!!

ahhh. I finally get a moment of relaxation after a hectic morning full of mountains of paperwork and invoicing. ugh. I have licked soo many envelopes this afternoon that my tongue has become a sticky mass of distaste. At least it's Friday, and actually, the day is flying by quickly so I can't really complain.

BUT, I was naughty today & splurged a whole $15 that wasn't on my budget. I couldn't help but buy Okayplayer's Truenotes Vol. 1, as I just adore just about any project ?euestlove is part of. That brother has soul! Ahh, but it's amazing how fast guilt sets in when you know you have given in to temptation (even though that too is quickly passing). Oh well. There goes my gas money for the weekend. hee hee.

On other news, Chi-town is Sinking. Oh my! I know its only a few millimeters a year & I won't be around when it finally does sink substantially, but it's creepy nonetheless. Actually from the look of a graph I saw on TV, pretty much the whole US is sinking, while Canada is actually going up. hmmm. There goes yet another reason to move to Canada (with the others being lower crime rates and better heathcare plans). Anyway, this whole sinking thing is due to the sheer weight of glaciers in the Midwest over 20,000 years ago. Talk about one hell of a glacier huh?

Last but not least, I am looking to start adding pictures to my blog. Is anybody out there familiar with programs that are easily integrated with Blogger? Do I need to upgrade from a basic acocunt to paid account? I have no clue. If you photoblog, please let me know your thoughts and suggestions. They are GREATLY appreciated. It just happens that this morning I downloaded Hello and plan on playing with it this weekend. BUT, I would like to explore other options so if you are familiar with photoblogging, please speak your mind & help a sista out. Thanks! And HAPPY FRIDAY!!!

Thursday, May 20, 2004

look at me!!!

As I type I am wearing a bag over my head. Why you ask ? Because I am trying to dye my hair all by my little lonesome. Supposedly, the heat captured in the bag helps your hair get more depth from the color (or something). I am not a beauty queen by any means, so lets cross our fingers and hope it doesnt come out blue!!

books on the brain...

Today I'm back at work and feeling better. Turns out, as soon as I got home yesterday, I wasn't feeling nauseated anymore (go figure that!). I couldn't sleep, sit still, and there was nothing on TV. So, I had the whole afternoon to be productive. I started going through all my crap & just in my shelves in my room I have found like 20 books to sell in my Yard Sale. I found treasures like a tree grows in brooklyn, my chakra meditation cd & workbook, and the outlaws book of poetry. It kinda makes me sad to see them all go, but at the same token, it feels sooo good to declutter my life. It's amazing how many books I read in the past year or two. Seeing the books all stacked together in huge piles made me realize the sheer amount of information we store in our heads...each book we read somehow contributing just a litte to our psyche...imbedding theories, highlighted quotes, and little pieces of stories into the cornerstones of our brains. I just love reading!!! One day (when I am rich...ha ha) I will have a huge library in my house and it shall be grand.

Talking about books, if you are into books as much as I am and don't yet know about BookCrossing, check it out and thank me later. I have been part of that site for a while, but never really utilized it. But, I might just decide to release all the books I do not sell at my yard sale later in the summer.

On other fronts, I can't wait to see the HBO movie Something the Lord Made. Not only is Mof Def in it, Gabrielle Union (from Deliver us from Eva) is also there. I swear she’s just so gorgeous that I can't stop from staring at her (and I am a woman!!). There’s just something about her smile that just blows me away, and that’s especially hard for someone to do.

OHH ! And I updated my bookshelf list on the right of this page. Too many books and not enough time!!!

Anyway, boss is calling so I shall post later. Peace.

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

morning sickness (faux pas)

Damn, I feel sick as all hell today. I think I will be leaving work early and go home to get some rest. I woke up fine, then on my way to the office I started feeling feverish. I get in, do the usual checking of emails and review of my in and out box while drinking my green/white tea. And BAM! I had to run to the bathroom to commence in throwing up for a good 5 minutes straight. UGH. Let it be known that of all the sicknesses to get, I hate stomach flu’s the worst. The whole act of blowing chunks is enough to make me want to shudder and pass out (I actually think thats what my hell would be...just throwing up again and again & again). Anyway, there is a point to my story (other than me just blowing chunks). After the whole nasty episode in the bathroom, the word gets out around the office that I'm sick and throwing up. Automatically people just start assuming...OH OH! MORNING SICKNESS!! I have been asked by my mother, my yahoo chat buddies & a co worker all in a matter of an hour if I was knocked up. What the hell? I mean, how come every time a woman feel just a tad bit nauseous in the morning, people automatically start thinking about the pitter patter of little feet? C'mon now. Give the woman the benefit of the doubt and just don't make assumptions. It can get annoying !!!

On another note...can it only be Wednesday? woe is me.

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

i pity the fool

Note that this is kinda a girlie topic, so if you are the squemish type, don't read past this sentence. Ok...I TOTALLY pity the fool that fathers my child...I seriously do !! I mean just PMSing I can be a total psycho; craving strange combinations of food, crying for hardly any reason at all, and switching to bitch mode at any given notice. Can you imagine 9 months of that? I will be a basketcase...It's exhausting to just think about it. Blah. I hate hormone imbalances.

mental overload

I have had so much on my mind lately. With the state of the world and the state of my own personal life, I have been thinking WAY too much the last few days. I just can't think about any of it anymore or my freaking head will explode. After the while it's just numbing and plain depressing...and thats plain 'no good' for an optimist such as myself.
today I will try to focus on the silver lining of life. Let's see (scratching chin)...At least in Mass. all denominations of people are allowed to get married whether gay or straight. Yea!!! Also, I got my muse back! I have been writing scores of poems and my written journal is finally getting some real use for a change.

I am also coordinating a huge yard sale at my house the first week in June, with all the proceeds going towards my house fund. I figure I am SOOOO close to affording something a little more my taste (with rents being in the ballpark I need), so I am trying to come up with creative ways to save more money. I already have a list 25 deep on things that I no longer need in my life. Plus, my family (which is also a bunch of packrats like myself) have agreed to help and contribute to the sale. I need to start going through all my crap, which will take FOREVER. But, it's not a bad way of forcing myself into spring cleaning mode, now is it ?

Friday, May 14, 2004 I'm mad

The puerto rican has come out and I must say thats shes had it up to here (pointing at the top of my head) with this new and updated blogger. Is it me or is it SUPER finnicky and doesn't work about a quarter of the time? Every time I tried to post something for the last hour or so, it errors out. Even trying to add or edit my template or previous posts proved unsuccessful. blah. I shall spend the next 15 minutes of my time writing a nasty little email to tech support. mwwahh ha ha (evil laugh).

talk talk talk...

Talk talk talk
I’m tired of all this talk
Of Janet Jacksons breasts
Or Which stars were dressed to impress
At this years grammys
Tired of hearing about being P.I.M.P.S.
And seeing loads of T-I double T’s
all over MTV

Is it me?
Or are more serious issues to address
Can we PLEASE talk about something else?
My heart longs to
Talk about our nations health care

Do I dare?
speak about this nations million dollar deficits
And who it really affects
My grandchildrens pockets are barren

I’m sick of Bush steady swearing
His False justifications
and mistakes
Impart 100 times the heart ache
On our radar map
Of the future

I want to talk about this so called war
And taking the necessary steps towards peace at our front door
Lets start spitting out the facts
Not just abstracts or societal propaganda
Telling us what we should think before we can even blink
And absorb it all
Yet through it all
All I hear is meaningless talk

I dream of...
engaging in open conversation
about the state of this nation
Is it not yet obvious that
this downward spiral will not just pass
And this nation will not last
if we don’t make a pact to fix it?

Lets get our country back on track!
reverse the trend of making the rich’s pockets more fat
Lets take no more slack and get the the real facts on the raising prices of gas

Theres soo much to discuss that hasn't been publicly addressed
Like how our children are becoming more lazy and more fat
And all the strange diseases suddenly being catched
About minorities being unfairly accused and attacked
Just for being latino, asian, or black

We are supposed to be the richest nation
But how come our children can’t even get the proper education?
To me, its obvious to see
That freedom comes at a steep price
We have been blinded by the 'bling bling' style of life
And forgot to build on the fundamentals

I have been patient ENOUGH
And I want to get to the roots
unveil all the truths
I want to start talking about things that matter in this world
And so should you

I wrote this poem in stages, so some of it is kinda old and some of it is kinda new. I hope you like it. If not, I really don't care (ha ha)..Also, please respect my writing and do not post it, duplicate it, etc etc. without my consent (or else feel my wrath). That is all. Peace.

Thursday, May 13, 2004


It's the little things that matter, like buying yourself some flowers JUST BECAUSE you rock. I brought myself a dozen red tulips, and damn....they just made my week. :)

Other times, when you are in a pissy mood...just the innocent smile and wave of a baby can brighten up your day; somehow making you realize the world is not as bad as you previously thought.

There are countless little things in life that matter sooo much, yet with all the hustle and bustle of life, a lot of times I don't acknowledge them. I look around me to see family, friends, and complete strangers caught up in the same thing; an endless inferno of meetings, finals & papers, daily responsibilities, and life in general.

Isn't it high time we start taking back the small pleasures long forgotten? Smile at a stranger and dance in the rain. Buy yourself flowers or eat that one Crispy Kreme doughnut even though you are on a strict diet. Life is too short. And though I realize I do not know much, today I know that it really is worth it to take a step back and appreciate the small things in life.

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

i'm all smiles today

Today has been a good (albeit long) day. We finalized all the details for the new office space and will be set to move after June 1st. I spent all afternoon looking over all the postcard designs I devised to send out to all our customers and vendors notifying them of our imminent move. I can't wait to chill in my NEW office (with the view) !! We actually are going to have a mini exercise room, complete with an elliptical machine and bowflex for a quick workout during the day. AHHH! The life.

Also I'm excited because I finally am making the steps to go back to school. I was considering pursuing my Masters degree; but instead, I decided to be patient and will take a few classes before I dedicate my time & energy..and most importantly, the money into my new career. I think I am going to take one or two sociology/psychology classes and a few Latino Studies classes. These were the 3 things that actually passed in my long career decision list of pros & cons I devised a few days ago. I should have known to stay in the liberal Arts field! After all, I practically got straight A's in the core LA curriculum and actually enjoyed most (if not all) of classes I took.

On the flip side, I am truly tired of the whole business mentality. I simply cannot see myself behind a desk for the rest of my life (well at least on a marketing level). I want to be inspired. I want to wake up in the morning (at least half of the time) actually looking forward to the day ahead. Is that so much to ask? I wish I could have been one of those people who knew what they wanted to do with their life from a young age. I even wish I have the foresight to develop a concrete plan to achieve some type of career satisfaction. Instead, I just float around trying to make ends meet.

Wow...that last paragraph was a bit morbid. SORRY !! hee hee. I REFUSE to start thinking negatively about my life. It is much more blessed than even I know. Therefore, I will end this post on a positive note and say (just like ICE CUBE) "Today Was a Good Day!!" And tomorrow...tomorrow will be even better damn it!

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

what's with the blogger interface?

This is just another example of trying to fix something that ain't broke! I don't know about you, I am totally hating on the new blogger interface. If you are a user of Blogger you know what I am talking about!! Though I love the color blue and brown too, it is just akward and too cartoonish. And, just to blog surf I had to completely log in, which in my opinion sucks majorly. blah.

national masturbation month & violating elliptical machines

I few days ago I was surprised to find out that May is National Masturbation Month (while reading the Chicago Reader). Some hallmark holiday huh ? Turns out that Good Vibe is even sponsoring a Masturbate-A-Thon 2004 where participants can 'Come for a Cause'; 100% of the money goes to non profit sexual education programs. Won't you make your 'donation' today ?

While I'm the subject of sex, I swear I see (and hear) some crazy things at the health club on a pretty regular basis. Take for instance, last night while on the elliptical machine; I had the horror of witnessing this man on the machine beside me, grunting and moaning in such a way that I swear he was having multiple orgasms while he was working out. I mean, this man, from the sounds of it and look on his face, was straight up violating that poor elliptical rider...hee hee. Plus, with his headphones on, he was totally oblivious to how LOUD and well...freakish he sounded (or maybe he was just deaf?). I tried blocking it out, even turning up my mp3 player to drown him out. He just seemed to get louder and louder. So loud in fact, people were staring at me like if I somehow knew him or what the hell I thought of the situation. I mean, what the hell ? But, Looking back on the whole situation, it was pretty damn funny.

Friday, May 07, 2004

yet another random thought..

Why in the hell do they call a $5 bill a 'fin' ? Who started this tradition and more importantly, why ?

I remember the first time I heard the term. (memory cloud appears)....I was about 5 or so and my father asked me if wanted a fin for spending at the movies with my other cousins. I was like "say what?...ohh...a fin?" Deep in contemplation at this point....I said "huh? why would I want a fin?". All I could do was picture myself with fish-like fins in place of my arms and legs. All my family could do is laugh.

Even to this day, even though I am QUITE familiar with this term, I still do not understand this concept. Does anyone out there know ?

a documentary on...biggie fries ?

This documentary which chronicles 30 days of eating nothing but McDonalds actually sounds pretty interesting. Not that I would actually pay money to go see it; the article states pretty much everything I wanted to know about it. The results were not surprising AT ALL...this poor guinea pig of a man gained a total of 25 pounds, and supposedly within the month, his diet took a toll on both his liver and sex drive...go figure. Supposedly, the man is a cheeseburger lover, however, his girlfriends a I don't know how honest and unbiased this documentary is to begin with. All I can say is what else can one expect to find after eating any fast food for 30 days straight? ugh...just the thought makes me nauseous.

I couldn't think of a title to this post, so it shall stay blank and nameless. I really don't have anything of value to contribute to the world today; I feel drained. It could be the fact that I have been out drinking for the last three nights in a row. Not that I got drunk per se, but after a few days of drinking back to back, my body gets tired and starts protesting. Last night me & my honey went to that new Tapas place called Sangria (the link to it is a few posts back if you are interested in checking it out). The food was phenomenal but even with 2 free tapas, between the two of us, we rang up a $80 bill (damn, sangrias are expensive). So, needless to say, I am now completely broke and will now commence to become a homebody for the next few weeks.

On another note, I am excited because I may actually be able to afford a vacation this year (yay for me). In July I could be on my way to a weeks worth of paradise in Puerto Rico. My aunt's friend has a condo right on the beach and hopefully (I'm keeping all my fingers, toes, and all my other extremities crossed) we can crash there for next to nothing. Flight fare out there’s not so bad, so I would be spending hardly any money at all. It's been 8 whole years since I have been to P.R. and i can't wait to go back. But, I have to seriously start practicing my Spanish skills because I am turning into a coconut here in the States. hee hee. I am sooo rusty that its scary. Its embarrassing to admit, but I probably have the Spanish vocabulary of a 1st grader. How sad for someone who is so proud of her Latina heritage. But considering I was never taught Spanish by my parents and the only exposure I had to it was my late grandmother, I would say that its not so bad. Nonetheless, it's high time to bust out my Spanish music and turn up Telemundo, ‘cuz Puerto Rico here I come !!

Thursday, May 06, 2004

the end of the mix tape ?

I recently came across this posting on Jackin4Beats , a Hip Hop/Urban News site and can't help but despise the RIAA for bullying on innocent people. This guy below had a LEGITATE BUSINESS selling LEGITIMATE hip hop mix tapes (not bootleg copies of them); yet he is being penalized and treated like a felon. Its just sad and I truly know and feel deep in my heart that this is not right. In essence, because he sold hip hop mix tapes, this man has been stripped of all his possessions and possibly his freedom...for what? So the fat cat record company execs can feel a sense of accomplishment against falling profits? (yet they still accomplish next to nothing) . All I can say is that no one should go to jail for selling or making mix one !! It's just another injustice to add to the millions of others gathering round the country. My heart truly weeps for this man.

Read below:
My name is Alan Berry; I have owned and operated Berry’s Music in Indianapolis, Indiana for thirteen years. We have been a rap store since day one. When other retailers were hiding their copies of NWA “Straight out of Compton” we had it proudly displayed and playing in the store non-stop. Remember that neighborhood store up the street or around the corner you used to get all the newest jams from? The store, were the guy behind the counter knew what was tight and what was weak. That’s Berry’s Music.

We breathe rap day in and day out. Today, a RIAA agent and local police authorities raided both of my stores and warehouse. They confiscated $10,000 worth of inventory. No counterfeits, just DJ mixes. Like DJ Green Lantern’s latest. Not a booted copy but the real mix cd. So, I ask rap artists why do you endorse mix cds but not defend the retailers against the RIAA for selling what you endorse? How many times on a mix have you dropped a line telling the listeners to check out DJ Whoo, DJ Clue, Kayslay, or whatever mix cd your hosting? Berry’s Music customers already knew 50cent was going to be tight. Everyone had been hearing him on mixes for a while. 50 was a marketing genius on how he pre-marketed his album before it dropped. Did mixes hurt him or help him? We don’t sell bootleg copies of a regular album. The local DJ comes in with a new CD filled with songs that your label gave him to put on his newest mix, plus has you saying, “This is whoever and your listing to blah-blah mix”. But if I sell it I can be arrested and have product confiscated. Please, I mean no disrespect to anyone. I’m just making you aware of the fact that in Indianapolis, Chicago, and who knows where else; the street mix is going to die. "

LATER POST: "Since the letter above no artist stepped up to help me. We have since lost both of our stores. 14 years of blood sweat and hip-hop gone. Have to sell everything for legal defense. Even my home is on the market. I can’t get a job with 13 felonies hanging on my resume. My court date is less than a month away. So please anyone that knows someone that can help me, pass this info to them. I BEG for myself and my family. I don’t think anyone should go to jail for selling mix cds. To my brothers in the industry, please help get the word out. My time is short. Thanks
Alan Berry "

My question is: why are mix tapes being picked on? I realize that they are sampling other peoples music to some extent, but in my opinion, the creation they make is both unique and separate from its parts. In essence, it's a new work of art. Thus, shouldn't this new mix type work/creation then be protected under the federal copyright law? That’s the big question. In fact, there was recently an online protest concerning a particular mix tape tape by DJ Danger Mouse called "the Grey Album" which compilated both Jay-Z's "The Black Album" and The Beatles "The White Album" (which by the way was rather brilliant if I may add). Check this site for details on it all.

For those who don't know, mix tapes have been an integral part of the hip hop culture for the longest time. It has always served as an efficient way for mc’s and dj’s to get their names known to the underground community and eventually, the world. I don't know about you, but some days just the thought of all the injustices in this country and the world makes me want to become a hermit. Its one of 'dem days...

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

happy cinco de mayo !!

It's Cinco de Mayo and I am in a particularly festive mood. Tonight I'm going out to celebrate life with my honey, indulging in free tacos and coronas at a little bar by my house. Its been a particularly good week for us in general. With his finishing another semester of school and me getting my own personal office life has been particularly pleasant as of late. So, we are taking a break from becoming sofa slugs and actually are going out for a change. Last night we went out drinking and out to eat and tomorrow we have plans to check out a new Tapas restaurant in the city called Sangria. Its nice spending some quality time for a change.

Also, I just peeped some info on a new exhibit called "Strange Days" at the museum of Contemporary Art. It seems very interesting and I will have to take some time out of my busy schedule to travel downtown to see it. It states (and I quote) "this exhibit identifies various ways that artists in the postwar era have responded to the unpredictable and often-tumultuous changes in the political, economic, social, and cultural landscape, the exhibition is divided into thematic groupings such as travel and mobility, work and labor, sexuality, architecture, language, trauma and history, and transgression." hmmmm I can't wait ! I am such an art lover. Too bad I can't draw or paint to save my life. However, this I want to change. Me & one of my friends found a place in Chicago that actually gives away free watercolor painting classes once a month. I think I might just buy myself a paint brush or two and attempt my first masterpiece. hee hee.

good morning is a contradition in terms

I don't know what it is, but I have been on a cartoon desktop background kick the last few weeks; sporting Scooby Doo, Wonder Woman, and South Park both on my desktop at work & home. But this morning, I found THE perfect Garfield screensaver that pictured exactly how I felt this morning (sad but true). Picture Garfield in a blue pajama suit, with a big floppy hat with a cotton ball on top..looking cranky as all hell with a cup of 'jo in his hand...The best part is the words: "good morning is a contradiction in terms" along side his distressed little face. I swear thats how I totally felt this morning ! So I say hats off to Garfield for keeping it real. He's one cool cat.

On another note, I have to stop watching so much Hgtv. I think I have seen one too many "Design on a Dimes", and seriously, it’s getting into my head. I have been watching it so much, I am having dreams of remodeling & redesigning my house which I have yet to buy. I swear, I'm putting crown moldings, ceiling fans, and even deciding what colors and furniture to choose. hee hee. I know its a bit strange to be watching HGtv soo much (my bf thinks I'm a freak because of it), but its because I have been trying to get new ideas on fixing up the house of my dreams. Sometimes, I actually look at what they did for under $500 and my mind starts whirling. I can't wait to actually have the space and freedom to do whatever I want to do. I hope I find a house soon, because I am slowly killing myself by staying with the folks. Not that they are fact, they are wonderful people. I JUST NEED MY OWN SPACE !!!

Talking about space, I have also been looking for office space for this crazy place I work for. I think we actually found the spot. We are going for a final walkthrough later today and should be set to move in on June 1. The space is perfect and lofty. Kinda artsy, yet refined. Plus, can you say duplex?...and the fact that I'm getting my own nifty little parking spot & a personal OFFICE with windows AND a view. Well, the view is merely of the street outside and some trees, but to's absolutely perfect !!!!

Monday, May 03, 2004

ah what a feeling

It's one of those rare moments when I feel like I have acomplished alot. Since I got home, I have worked out, did some laundry, edited and streamlined my honeys 15 page research paper, and took a most relaxing shower; complete with my green tea therapy body wash and lavendar lotion (ahhhh). It truly is the little things in life that make me happiest. :)

Random thoughts for the day

Random thought 1: I love my internet access ! All weekend, my internet at home was down and it felt soo strange not to check email and instant message with friends all weekend. Talk about feeling disconnected with the rest of world.

Random thought 2: you can't beat getting a FREE HEADSET FOR YOUR CELL PHONE!!. I actually ordered one from them and all you pay is the shipping and handling. But the measly $3.95 you cough up is way cheaper than if you brought at the store.

Random thought 3: Again my mind is racing on what career I would like to do the rest of my life. Today I want to take a bunch of classes like "Latinos is the United States" and the "Socio-Cultural Dynamics of Latin America"; later to become a kick ass latino studies teacher (on the college level of course)

Last but certainly not least: Seeing a mothers day advertisement on the front door of my local Lover's Lane's store really gave me a horrible image in my mind which I rather not have. It actually said " For Mothers Day...Show her how much you Lovers Lane". I know the advertisement was geared towards the husbands and not the kids, but just strolling by, I totally got that icky feeling I get whenever I think of sex and my parents in the same thought. ugh...

i know its not cinco de mayo yet but...

in honor of Cinco de Mayo and what it represents for me, I'm celebrating my Chicano roots. For those wondering, Im 1/2 chicana, and 1/2 boriqua and damn proud of both sides of my culture. Anyway, here are a few things I'm on lately:

  • Chicano MURAL ART- "Resurrection of the Green Planet" by Ernesto de la Loza 1990-91 (this mural kicks ass)

  • "Ester Hernandez - her work is so raw - Especially "Mis Madre"s & "Luna llena"

  • Fellow Chicano's Poetry

  • Imagining a day without a mexican
  • (thanks goes out to Mariposa for the info)