I AM...

I am whatever YOU think I am until YOU get to KNOW me. This is true for everyone else too, of course.. so don't make assumptions about anyone or pass judgment; ask questions. You might just make a new friend.


Sunday, February 12, 2012


Take a baby’s rattle away while he’s shaking it, and the baby
will cry, this notion came to me because last week, there was this lady that
came into the store and she decided to tell the couple behind me, ‘repent, God wants you to give your life to
I remained silent and upon reflection thought to myself that neither
was open to comforting this Christian belief that ruled lives for SO many year. To me, they were ‘lost’ in their beliefs. They both had [un]knowingly taken the path of least
challenge with little question because it was handed to them. To think you have
the answers while ignoring all information to the contrary, is to be lost in
the mind of illusion. How can any God want a people LOST in holy soup?

People who simply accept beyond questioning are as special as
those who either don’t ‘believe’, or those who’ve replaced believing with being
open to myth versus fact and are ONLY
open to all life’s mysteries of ‘godliness’.
‘Believers’ who regard others as
lesser are as stuck in the mind as much as are those not, who don’t open their
hearts to accept that each person is where they are at. For that lady to do
what she did is her idiotic way of assuming that the couple behind isn’t ‘saved’ is downright insulting. AMAZING how each Christian person can’t
seem to have a different view of what being ‘saved‘means.
AMAZING how we are born to think for
ourselves, to choose to be open to what we discover on our own journey, as well
as expressing it as our own creation; yet we rather get lost in HOLY SOUP.



Whitney Houston, who reigned as pop
music's queen until her majestic voice and regal image were ravaged by drug
use, erratic behavior and a tumultuous marriage to singer Bobby Brown, has
died. She was 48.

Kristen Foster said Saturday that the singer had died, but the cause and the
location of her death were unknown.

her peak, Houston the golden girl of the music industry. From the middle 1980s
to the late 1990s, she was one of the world's best-selling artists. She wowed
audiences with effortless, powerful, and peerless vocals that were rooted in
the black church but made palatable to the masses with a pop sheen.

success carried her beyond music to movies, where she starred in hits like
"The Bodyguard" and "Waiting to Exhale."

had the he perfect voice, and the perfect image: a gorgeous singer who had sex
appeal but was never overtly sexual, who maintained perfect poise.

influenced a generation of younger singers, from Christina Aguilera to Mariah
Carey, who when she first came out sounded so much like Houston that many
thought it was Houston.

by the end of her career, Houston became a stunning cautionary tale of the toll
of drug use. Her album sales plummeted and the hits stopped coming; her once
serene image was shattered by a wild demeanor and bizarre public appearances.
She confessed to abusing cocaine, marijuana and pills, and her once pristine
voice became raspy and hoarse, unable to hit the high notes as she had during
her prime.

"The biggest devil is me. I'm either
my best friend or my worst enemy," Houston told ABC's Diane Sawyer in an
infamous 2002 interview with then-husband Brown by her side.

It was a tragic fall
for a superstar who was one of the top-selling artists in pop music history,
with more than 55 million records sold in the United States alone.

She seemed to be born
into greatness. She was the daughter of gospel singer Cissy Houston, the cousin
of 1960s pop diva Dionne Warwick and the goddaughter of Aretha Franklin.

Houston first started
singing in the church as a child. In her teens, she sang backup for Chaka Khan,
Jermaine Jackson and others, in addition to modeling. It was around that time
when music mogul Clive Davis first heard Houston perform.

"The time that I
first saw her singing in her mother's act in a club ... it was such a stunning
impact," Davis told "Good Morning America."

"To hear this
young girl breathe such fire into this song. I mean, it really sent the proverbial
tingles up my spine," he added.

Before long, the rest
of the country would feel it, too. Houston made her album debut in 1985 with
"Whitney Houston," which sold millions and spawned hit after hit.
"Saving All My Love for You" brought her her first Grammy, for best
female pop vocal. "How Will I Know," "You Give Good Love"
and "The Greatest Love of All" also became hit singles.

Another multiplatinum
album, "Whitney," came out in 1987 and included hits like "Where
Do Broken Hearts Go" and "I Wanna Dance With Somebody."

The New York Times
wrote that Houston "possesses one of her generation's most powerful
gospel-trained voices, but she eschews many of the churchier mannerisms of her
forerunners. She uses ornamental gospel phrasing only sparingly, and instead of
projecting an earthy, tearful vulnerability, communicates cool self-assurance
and strength, building pop ballads to majestic, sustained peaks of

Her decision not to
follow the more soulful inflections of singers like Franklin drew criticism by
some who saw her as playing down her black roots to go pop and reach white
audiences. The criticism would become a constant refrain through much of her
career. She was even booed during the "Soul Train Awards" in 1989.

"Sometimes it gets
down to that, you know?" she told Katie Couric in 1996. "You're not
black enough for them. I don't know. You're not R&B enough. You're very pop.
The white audience has taken you away from them."

Some saw her 1992
marriage to former New Edition member and soul crooner Bobby Brown as an
attempt to refute those critics. It seemed to be an odd union; she was seen as
pop's pure princess while he had a bad-boy image, and already had children of
his own. (The couple had a daughter, Bobbi Kristina, in 1993.) Over the years,
he would be arrested several times, on charges ranging from DUI to failure to
pay child support.

But Houston said their
true personalities were not as far apart as people may have believed.

"When you love,
you love. I mean, do you stop loving somebody because you have different
images? You know, Bobby and I basically come from the same place," she
told Rolling Stone in 1993. "You see somebody, and you deal with their
image, that's their image. It's part of them, it's not the whole picture. I am
not always in a sequined gown. I am nobody's angel. I can get down and dirty. I
can get raunchy."

It would take several
years, however, for the public to see that side of Houston. Her moving 1991
rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner" at the Super Bowl, amid the
first Gulf War, set a new standard and once again reaffirmed her as America's

In 1992, she became a
star in the acting world with "The Bodyguard." Despite mixed reviews,
the story of a singer (Houston) guarded by a former Secret Service agent (Kevin
Costner) was an international success.

It also gave her
perhaps her most memorable hit: a searing, stunning rendition of Dolly Parton's
"I Will Always Love You," which sat atop the charts for weeks. It was
Grammy's record of the year and best female pop vocal, and the
"Bodyguard" soundtrack was named album of the year.

She returned to the big
screen in 1995-96 with "Waiting to Exhale" and "The Preacher's
Wife." Both spawned soundtrack albums, and another hit studio album,
"My Love Is Your Love," in 1998, brought her a Grammy for best female
R&B vocal for the cut "It's Not Right But It's Okay."

But during these career
and personal highs, Houston was using drugs. In an interview with Oprah Winfrey
in 2010, she said by the time "The Preacher's Wife" was released,
"(doing drugs) was an everyday thing. ... I would do my work, but after I
did my work, for a whole year or two, it was every day. ... I wasn't happy by
that point in time. I was losing myself."

In the interview,
Houston blamed her rocky marriage to Brown, which included a charge of domestic
abuse against Brown in 1993. They divorced in 2007.

Houston would go to
rehab twice before she would declare herself drug-free to Winfrey in 2010. But
in the interim, there were missed concert dates, a stop at an airport due to
drugs, and public meltdowns.

She was so startlingly
thin during a 2001 Michael Jackson tribute concert that rumors spread she had
died the next day. Her crude behavior and jittery appearance on Brown's reality
show, "Being Bobby Brown," was an example of her sad decline. Her
Sawyer interview, where she declared "crack is whack," was often
parodied. She dropped out of the spotlight for a few years.

Houston staged what
seemed to be a successful comeback with the 2009 album "I Look To
You." The album debuted on the top of the charts, and would eventually go

Things soon fell apart.
A concert to promote the album on "Good Morning America" went awry as
Houston's voice sounded ragged and off-key. She blamed an interview with
Winfrey for straining her voice.

A world tour launched
overseas, however, only confirmed suspicions that Houston had lost her
treasured gift, as she failed to hit notes and left many fans unimpressed; some
walked out. Canceled concert dates raised speculation that she may have been
abusing drugs, but she denied those claims and said she was in great shape,
blaming illness for cancellations.


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