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.


Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Now here I am seeing exploring a world I knew NOTHING about. The ONLY thing I knew about the homosexual world is what I heard my mother and other family members say during conversations with their friends. They would say things “who is the man and woman here?” or things like, “the woman is taken care of by the man.” So having these thoughts in my head and being out of work while meeting my first, I thought okay I have nothing to worry about…until I found out that he had NO money. I didn’t leave because I felt that money wasn’t everything (see I did have my head on when it came to certain things). So after talking to each other for a week via the phone, we made arrangements to go on a date, which ended @ his place (the part of the evening I was looking forward to). We got there he started kissing me, making me feel good ALL over…I can remember my body shivering in ecstasy which was fine with me. So I asked him to penetrate me, he was reluctant but after I kept asking him to do it, he gave in…Now this being my first I had NO idea of what to expect OR what I should do (neither did he…so it seemed).  He got some lotion and applied it on himself and then in my waiting fun hole. He kissed me then prepared to enter me…the penis head got in and I felt a pain like NOTHING on this planet. So I pushed him off me and told him I think I’ll pass…@ that moment I felt SO betrayed by the porno movies that saw because I couldn’t get down like them. But that feeling left as soon as he started to give me a blow job and I thought I had died and gone to heaven because that feeling was a feeling…you know what I mean…right? So after that night, EVERY TIME I coughed, laughed, sneezed OR burped I feel the pain in my fun hole from his penis. Now that I think about his penis was SO small, yet it hurt like a mother…No matter I guess because it was just him and I. So then on he became my life because I was becoming someone I didn’t recognize. I was lying to my family about where I was going and why I sleeping out…modeling classes actual became useful for me (damn I was good L(O)L!) and I felt no guilt @ all. So after about six months of us being alone in the world, I got a visit from an old high school friend of mine. He came to wish me a HAPPY EARTH~DAY! And we caught up with each other and I told him that I am gay and he just smiled…it was SO nice to be able to tell someone else, but I ONLY told him because I knew he was gay as well (homeboy was VERY effeminate in high school). So we became friends again and thus started the possessive streak with my first…He didn’t like the fact that I had a friend because in his mind he was out to take my first me away from him. He was TOTALLY wrong because I am NOT that type of man. To this VERY day there are quite a number of gay men that either dislike me OR stay away from because of him. I mean that’s how things are in the gay universe right? Their wanting to get in pants didn’t bother me because I knew that I was in a relationship and I am a faithful man. Too bad he didn’t know that…Yet I stayed with him because I saw him in what he didn’t see in himself…I thought all he need is time, so I gave it to him…THREE YEARS TO BE EXACT! This man would insist that he go EVERY WHERE I go and when I stood my ground he did things like burrow a friend’s car and followed me and my friends around to the various places we went. When I got home I would get calls asking me about the blow job I performed in the DIRTY ASS bathroom @ the club or who I was kissing here and there…all things others did to try to break us up because I wouldn’t give them the time of day. They had his number and he was TOO stupid to see it. My relationship was wearing me down so I thought maybe I should get a job so we could save some money and move in together…my thoughts were we could be together day and night and that would show him the man he has in me (guess God don’t let certain things happen for a reason huh?) This dude thought that I wanted to leave him…his words to me were, “what happens if you meet some manager who could give you all the nice things in the world?” To which I said, “well if I leave for a man with money, then I am doing you a favor right?” I mean why be with a man that bails for another just to have money and the things that come along with it? There was an ad in the paper looking for a messenger and office clerk @ this offshore bank…of course he told me that I wasn’t qualified for the job so I shouldn’t apply. I was like whatever…I applied got the job on the same day of my interview. He STOPPED going to work so he could follow me around as I did my various messenger stops for the company (which was seen by the top managers of the company). He followed me home to which I begged him NOT to do because people in the neighborhood were starting to talk about our relationship, but he didn’t care. My VERY Christian aunt started snooping around, questioning me and accusing me of the things people was telling her about me. I just shrugged things off because hear say doesn’t matter (so I thought). This man that I let inside my world was turning things upside down but I fought things and kept myself together…To this day I have NO idea how I did that, but I did…I kept a smile on my face because I knew what I wanted for myself…I was 20 @ this time and by the time I turned 21, I had NOTHING to smile about anymore, my joy was gone and it was replaced with anger …anger @ myself for doing what my family told me NOT to…NOW COMES THE HARD PART…

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


So I’ve made it to the age of 17 and I find myself bargaining with God yet again…You see @ this age I was dealing with my second pregnancy scare (the first came @ the age of 15/16). Between the ages of 12-17 I experimented with sister’s friends and female cousins that were close to my age. And looking back now I see how biased my family was because I am SURE they knew what I was doing in my room that had NO door! Guess it better to straight than gay huh? I mean the world seems to overlook a lot the things you do on the way to adulthood so…Anyways after finding out from a doctor that there was NO baby, I made good on my promise and NEVER had sex with a female again. I stayed to myself for 2 years just doing what I did best and that was pleasuring myself. That was comforting until I met my first boyfriend…I was 19 and he was 27; and we met down town when I was my home from my modeling classes (yes I thought I wanted to be a model). On my way of the building that led me to the bus terminal, I saw a bus suddenly stop…I looked @ it and IMMEDIATELY knew that it stopped because the person getting off was coming to me (wish I could have seen other things concerning him but then again that would change my story so…) There he was this thin dark guy with a nice smile asking me if I knew his cousin that attended the same school I did. I was like no sorry and kept walking and he followed…He kept pace with me for a few blocks and then we got to a point where I had to go left and he had to go right…So as I walked and looked back I saw him standing there just staring @ me…He waved to me, I stopped and he came running with all nerves and a shy smile…I was SO forward because to me it was SO obvious that this man was trying to get @ me. I mean he only rubbed a hand a few times while we both walked side by side on the crowded streets and @ this point what could two strange men that NEVER saw each other before have in common? So I asked him, “is there something you want to ask me?” he said nothing just smile…@ that point I was like okay I know the deal, you don’t have to say anything I am cool…He asked for my number and I gave it to him, but not before telling him that he is NOT to call me until I call him. Of course he didn’t follow my instructions and called as soon as his ass got home. I thought it was cute and looking @ it now I should have seen that as a sign, but that’s the past so…We talked for a bit and agree to later meet each that night (damn I was forward huh?) So he came to my house after realizing that he lived VERY close to me and we went for a walk and talked some more…We ended up @ one our public parks and talked for a bit…He asked me if I’d kiss a man before I said no (why am I getting aroused?) and led me to a spot that would be just for us…and as he held my hand he drew me closer to him and kiss me…I remember that during the kiss, I thought this is the worst kiss of my life. He had facial hair and I was like this shit is itchy so I pulled away. @ that point I was REALLY horny and I was VERY curious about anal sex so I asked him if we could do it with each other?...(talk about not having HIV on the brain). He told me NO and jerked me off instead…I thought I was going to die because the only time I masturbated was when I did it and having someone else do it was out of this world. So we left and he walked me then headed to his house called me when he got in, we said our goodbyes and I lie down thinking this gay thing isn’t bad @ all, I could SO get into this…BOY DID I EVER! STAY TUNED THERE’S MORE TO COME…

Monday, September 28, 2009


Walking on the grounds of memories past and remembering the journey of how EASILY humans can crack the whip AND give US bread crumbs if we don’t conform to their way of who we should be when it comes to OUR sexuality is a journey in this life one will NEVER forget. So how does one revolutionize the terms of HIS/HER sexuality? How does one deal with COMING OUT? For me, my journey into accepting myself has been a difficult one. From childhood I was told to hide myself from the world and fall in line. You see I LOVED playing with sister’s dolls and tea sets; we played dress up and I LOVED wearing my mother’s clothes. So @ the tender age of 6 or 7, I can remember SO vividly how I LOVED playing cowboys N’ Indians with male friends. Naturally I was the Indian that PURPOSELY got caught because I knew that my friends would grip me real tight so that I couldn’t escape. This feeling brings a smile to my face even today because I can still feel my body pressed SO firmly against my friend’s and I can still feel his penis pressed against my cute bottom…the innocence of childhood huh? Well that innocence that I had with me got changed forever when my friends and I got caught naked on top of each other. I can remember the ass whopping I got and I first learned to be ashamed of who I am AND what came SO naturally to me…From that day forward my uncle who administered the beating NEVER let a day go by without telling me that if I grew up to be a sissy that he would KILL ME! Of course I HATED him (funny how he did try years later) never mind that, I will get there VERY soon…I don’t know what happened to me because I became all about girls and seeking their affections until I turned 12. I remember walking in my neighborhood and seeing the most beautiful boy and I quickly became ashamed. I thought that that my liking boys was something I did as a little child. So I started praying and bargaining with God NOT to let me be gay because I didn’t want to be the thing that society frowns so heavily upon. Such a burden for a child to carry (too bad this spoils the theory that we can change who we are or that we some how sought out this demon)…After many years of crying I thought I was fine because I was around boys but nothing happened. So I thought I was cured because I had hidden MY light for so long that it has shrunk to an ember, making the things I did during my childhood silly AND seemingly inconsequential. Funny how things are NEVER what they seem and if I knew then what I know now, I am sure my story would be a whole lot different…But then again they weren’t able to snuff my light so as difficult as my COMING OUT experience has been, I wouldn’t change a single thing… Stay tuned my story continues…

Sunday, September 27, 2009


There is NO secret recipe for life on this planet, yet there are individuals who move through life with the colored perception of what GOD WANTS. So for centuries these persons in this unpredictable AND chaotic world, these individuals have used THE BIBLE as a way to keep a certain group of society subordinate. Those who feel that they possess the power define those who they feel are powerless; and then impose their own definition on the ones defined. The guiding principle is to ensure the comfort, the convenience, the happiness, and the well-being of the dominant ones. It HURTS my soul SO much to know that there are persons out there that have such unnecessary HATE for men and women like me; and to make matter worst, SO many of them don’t even care to know the facts about the lives we live…Why should anyone get themselves involved in such a controversial subject like homosexuality unless they absolutely have to…right? Hence it is easier for them to interpret us as THE sign of hell N’ damnation? I often wonder if they realize who made us when they think of the disgusting image of SAME-SEX individuals being together. However, I am under the impression that since it is NONE of their business, they just need to move on and start thinking about something they actually know something about! Is it our fault that they don’t understand who we are? Is there a legitimate reason to put a whole class of people on GOD’S bad list when their bible says NOT to judge? Their actions CLEARLY shows that they have a limited understanding of the book they follow, the world around them AND the complexities of homosexuals. Their book tells them that ONLY GOD can judge us yet in their quest to feel superior AND sanctified they either don’t get it or…sorry there is NO other excuse…THEY JUST DON’T GET IT! As a result of this, they then out of ignorance N’ fear VIGOROUSLY defend the words out of a book rather than leave well intentioned humans alone…SO much for entering THEIR GOD’S KINGDOM through the narrow gate…I wonder if we will ever find the gateway that is small where the road is narrow? I suppose life is TOO hard and it is SO easy just to do and believe what everybody else around you believes, especially about a particularly controversial issue such as homosexuality…right? After all, what would God say? F&CK WHAT GOD WANTS FOR US AS HUMAN IS THEIR MOTTO BECAUSE THEY ARE HELL BENT ON LIVING WITH BLINDERS THAT CREATE A RESTRICTIVE TUNNEL VISION. CAN WE BLAME THEM FOR NOT WANTING US TO BE HAPPY WHEN THEY AREN’T? THEIR FOCUSING ON OUR IMMORAL AGENDA KEEPS THEM FROM SEEING THE REAL TRUTH…& IF THERE IS A 2,000 YEAR BELIEF THAT HOMOSEXUALITY IS A SIN, HOW CAN WE COME ALONG & SAY THAT THE CHURCH HAS BEEN WRONG ALL THIS TIME? I SAY WE CAN BECAUSE OF THE MYOPIC VIEW THEY HAVE AND THE ISOLATION BETWEEN US & THEM IS THE MAIN REASON WE CAN SAY THEY ARE SO WRONG…SO F&CK THE BIBICAL TYRANNY OF THE MAJORITY! I KNOW I DO WITH EVERY BREATH THAT LEAVES THIS BODY OF MINE…

Saturday, September 26, 2009


"Nothing Compares 2 U" is a song written in the 1980s by Prince for The Family. In 1990, a cover version by Sinéad O'Connor became a number-one hit in many countries, charting in the U.S., UK, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Canada, and Germany. The subject of the song is actress Susannah Melvoin.[1] Mainly shot in Paris, the video for "Nothing Compares 2 U" was directed by John Maybury. The clip consists almost solely of a closeup on O'Connor's face as she sings the song's lyrics. Toward the end of the video, two tears roll down her face, one per cheek. O'Connor stated on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of the 90s that it was caused by the lyric "All the flowers that you planted, Mama in the back yard/All died when you went away", because she had a very complex relationship with her late mother, who she claims abused her. The clip won Best Video at the 1990 MTV Video Music Awards – the first video by a female artist to win in this category. Though we hear many songs, few stay with us…creating an impact. Whenever this song is being played, one CANNOT help but feel bonded to it somehow because makes us offer our whole selves to the feelings it brings to the surface. And when ones attention N’ energy are all focused in the moment, one gets to LIVE!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


One likes penetration; the other does not. One likes tossing salad; the other does not…I can go on AND on about the differences we find when it comes to SEXUAL COMPATIBILITY.

Is SEXUAL COMPATIBILITY something you just have with a person? Or is it something you can develop over time? How do you begin to define something like sexual compatibility? What’s more important, how often you want sex, what kind of sex you like, or what having sex means to you? And how are different aspects weighted?

There’s no one answer, but I wanted to know what your thoughts are on this subject, can a couple with DIFFERENT sexual desires make a relationship work?

Monday, September 21, 2009
























Sunday, September 20, 2009


As a believer of monogamous AND stable relationship of SAME-SEX individuals, I believe that this we did exist in ancient times. However, due to the fact that in most ancient societies the general rule was that sexual activity was strongly encouraged to be limited to and concentrated on conceiving and bearing offspring in order to ensure the community’s survival and growth.  In those times most people understood that male seed was actually for the SOLE purpose of furthering mankind. Back then men thought that women had NOTHING to do with the birth, except the incubation.  So saving the male seed or semen in order to procreate was critically important in their minds. And under the provisions of the ancient Old Testament, it was considered ritually impure to participate in any act like homosexual anal intercourse that was a misuse or waste of male seed. Therefore living situations and the resulting sexual relations were restricted as much as possible to just opposite-sex unions that could produce children. So the idea of two same sex individuals living together as a couple would have been highly unlikely in that atmosphere. Nonetheless, I know of NO suggestion in the texts that relationships did OR did not exist between SAME-SEX ADULTS. However, ancient texts were written by men of the upper classes who usually had no interest in recording what was actually going on. THEREFORE I ASK, DOES THE BIBLE DEAL WITH MODERN DAY HOMOSEUALITY?

Saturday, September 19, 2009


"Like a Prayer" is the first single by American singer-songwriter Madonna from her 4th studio album, Like a Prayer. It was released on February 28, 1989 by Sire Records. A power pop song by Madonna, it notably features a gospel choir. In Japan and Australia, a mini-album titled Remixed Prayers was released, which included remixes of the title track and also "Express Yourself". This song was a massive hit worldwide. In the U.S. the song went straight to the top of the Billboard Hot 100 in spring 1989 and also topped the Hot Dance Music/Club Play and Hot Dance Music/Maxi-Singles Sales charts. It peaked at number 3 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart. It was released in the UK on 6 March 1989 and entered the UK Singles Chart straight at #2 before climbing to #1 and remaining there for three weeks until Easter Sunday (26 March). It also reached number one in countries such as Australia, Canada, Italy, Belgium, Ireland and many others. "Like a Prayer" was Madonna's fifth number one single on the Eurochart Hot 100 Singles chart, reaching the top on March 25, 1989, and staying at number one for 12 weeks. The highly controversial music video for the song was directed by Mary Lambert, who also directed "Borderline", "Like a Virgin", "Material Girl" and "La Isla Bonita". It was shot at Raleigh Studios in Hollywood, California and Madonna's scenes with burning crosses were filmed on San Pedro Hills in San Pedro, California. The video featured actor Leon Robinson and premiered on MTV on March 3, 1989, and later went on to win the Viewer's Choice Award at the 1989 MTV Video Music Awards. It attracted criticism for its subplot of Madonna making love to Saint Martin de Porres - which some perceived as being a black version of Christ[5] -, its use of Catholic iconography, including a scene where Madonna developed stigmata, and cross burning. The video topped MTV's countdown of "100 Videos That Broke The Rules" in 2005, and for the 25th anniversary of MTV (August 1, 2006), viewers voted the video as the "Most Groundbreaking Music Video of All Time". In addition, the video was ranked #20 on Rolling Stone magazine's "The 100 Top Music Videos" and #2 on VH1's 100 Greatest Videos. On November 27, 2007 Fuse named "Like a Prayer" as one of its ten "Videos That Rocked The World". I went to the funeral service for the friend that I dedicated my throwback video for and I thought he would appreciate this song as his service didn’t do him any justice @ all…I understand the need we have as people to give a deceased family member a service that gives them comfort, but what about that person’s wishes? I know it doesn’t matter because he is gone, but it feels good to know that I can give this to him…

Thursday, September 17, 2009


Are you a single man/woman who is fed up with the whole dating scene? Are you doubtful that you’ll ever find a decent and quality guy? Worried that you’ll be alone, tired of those one-night stands and ready to settle down with a man of substance? IF YOUR RESPONSE IS YES TO ANY ONE OF THESE QUESTIONS PLEASE COMPLETE THE FOLLOWING SENTENCE: THE PROBLEM WITH MEN IS _______________________.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


I FOUND THIS LITTLE GEM ON PLANETOUT & THOUGHT I’D SHARE IT WITH YOU GUYS…The responsibility of your orgasm should never be completely dependent on, or might I say, completely in the hands of someone else. However, if you have the good fortune of someone present and willing to help out, all the better.

Oddly enough, we might know exactly how we like to "climb Mount Baldy," but try to coax out someone else's joy jelly and we might be all thumbs (which can work nicely if your partner wants a digit up the wazoo). I'm sure some people thoughtlessly assume, "What's the big deal? All ya gotta do is rub up and down. What guy wouldn't shoot his load?" Garsh! A person who approaches sex with that kind of sensitive creativity is a lover I want to have in my bed for the rest of my life -- not! Of course, there are those guys whose giggle stick can be flipped simply by looking at it. Most everyone else enjoys, if not relishes, a little more finessing. So here are some pointers to help you get your partner off and running.  

The most important skill you can employ to pop your partner's rod is active observation, much like active listening, when you don't just listen with your ears, but your whole being is participating. You're going to be doing a whole variety of activities to get his hot dog a-bubblin' and when you do, you'll want to note the reaction, since some things will quickly deflate the balloon and others will have him squealing like a pig. Eventually, you'll have a tool belt full of items to build up your buddy's oil tower (if you're into that sort of construction-worker fantasy).  

If he seems nervous or self-deprecating, try a well placed compliment, "Your flexed and sweaty muscles look so hot." Hearing that you're genuinely turned on by him is a green light for him to shift into high gear. If you notice him getting frustrated, then acknowledge the pleasure he's experiencing: "Yeah baby, all you have to do is enjoy how good your cock feels." The more a person can surrender to his experience (and be free to think a little less about it) the easier it is for the body to naturally function the way it was designed. Another tried-and-true method is varying the speed and pressure of your strokes. Doing the same thing over and over can actually numb out what you're rubbing. If your hand becomes tired in the process, don't just take a break and make him do it alone. Instead, with your sexiest whisper, ask him, "Show me how you do it." While you take a break, notice what he's doing, learn from it, and again compliment him on his technique: "Yeah, dude, polish that surfboard."  

Never interrupt an orgasm. If your finger is hula-dancing up his anus as he starts to squirt, don't stop! It might be the very wiggle bringing on his orgasm. I had a partner who, at my moment of no return, tried to push my hand aside so he could get his mouth in position to suck my lollipop. Now it would have been one thing if this was our agreed plan of attack, but if I'm becoming one with the cosmos, don't get in the way of my euphoria for your own gain, bee-atch! Give me respect and honor in that heavenly moment and I'll do right by you, too.  

Furthermore, when your hand gets his juice to jump and he hits his high note, (once again) watch very carefully for him to signal what to do next. Some guys want you to instantly stop while they free-fall into bliss. If he wants the longest orgasm he can muster, you'll want to keep your motion going. Let him ride it as long as possible. You'll know when to stop if you're watching. When that signal comes, don't immediately clean up. Wait for him to move out of the space. If your rod is up his arse, don't withdraw. Wait for him to dismount. It's an orgasm! Let him savor the moment and the afterglow.  

Speaking of which, it is important to recognize the natural chemical downswing after an orgasm. During an aroused state, a lot of endorphins are burned up. As a result, when the body returns to its routine functions, we're left with a lower amount of our natural "happy drug." Depending on the metabolism, it can take anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours to restore this depletion. Could this be why some of us duck out the door or fall instantly asleep after cumming? I can't tell you how many times I've told this to guys and watched a sense of relief wash over their faces: "Oh! It's not about guilt or shame; it's chemical!"  

Are you an ejacu-dictator who insists on an orgasm or "it just ain't sex?" Are you a tantra-ista jizm-hoarder who thinks life has been wasted if you ever spill a drop of semen? Both approaches miss the point. Sex is for your enjoyment (with or without another person). Quite frankly, everyone is sooner or later in a sexual situation when orgasm is more work than it's worth, and that's OK. Cumming -- or not cumming -- needs to be a win/win scenario, because the goal is always pleasure. So the next time you find yourself helping out, keep your antennae up (as well as the one between your legs), watch for the signals and enjoy the fireworks. Then say, MY TURN!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


FAMILY: where generational blessings OR Curses are passed on to children because the majority of ADULTS do NOT know themselves…I can remember being a boy no more than the age of 10 and my mother telling me that she didn’t want me; and who could blame her? She was 19 didn’t finish high school, met a man that told her to let her uncle take her and her baby because he wasn’t interested…After hearing how she tried SO many remedies to bring forth her period by drinking various homemade concoctions I felt sorry for her because here she is a female that thought she was in love, giving herself to a man that planted a seed which he didn’t want to nurture… MY mother was A BABY HAVING A BABY…

How does a woman in her shoes grow up and be a mother when she herself lost her mother @ an early age? I know that a mother’s instincts take over and she somehow knows how to take care of a child, but when you are a baby yourself, how does she share her life with a child when she is barely an adult? She grew up in a sex-taboo culture that skirts around issues of condoms and birth control. I remember when my sister first got her period, my mother told her that she is going to place a plastic bag on her room door and when my sister sees her period she wants to see EVERY single proof…her reason? Well because young girls today are too slick…Now I know her intentions were from a good place, but I can’t help but think that she missed A GOLDEN opportunity to talk to both my sister and myself about sex and being responsible (though I  already was sexually active @ that time).

How does a mother deal with a young boy who has developed a taste for sex by the time he was 12/13? I grew up with tons of family around me and NO one talked to me about the changes going on in my body, I had to experiment with masturbation to find out that the white stuff that is around the head of the penis needs to be cleaned DAILY! (Gross I know, so imagine how I felt?) We are all wired to have sex; well most are, so shouldn’t there be an URGENT need to prepare the next generation as to the pitfalls associated with premature activity that can lead to so many complications including disease and unwanted pregnancy, and even death? I asked this before and I will ask it again, how can a young woman such as my mother teach me when NO one has taught her?

I know what I am talking about isn’t just a GHETTO problem, but I find that this is largely the case for SO many folks living in the “GHETTO.” What becomes of the SANCTITY of the mother AND father when it turns us into more of the same? It is SO rare to go back into my childhood neighborhood and NOT see a female that I grew up with who does NOT have @ least 4/5 kids. I know babies are a blessing, but these women ONLY care about their hair, clothes AND getting that next man to take care of them. The mindset of many of today’s parents living in the GHETTO is a detriment to us all; and it is my belief that if we are to correct this, we are going to have to look deep look within ourselves for the cure. SO many of us just sit and say but what are they to do? Where do they turn? How can they change what they didn’t create?

I suppose I have way TOO many solutions in this head of mine, but how about we take the proactive approach much like the way the medical community would handle an epidemic? That is, we have to take preventive measures while simultaneously treating the ailments. Attacking cultural plagues will take time and we will have to employ studied and measured responses. From what we have here today, it is OBVIOUS that when persons are left virtually on their own to give meaning to these concepts, we end up with a lot of confusion. But if we were to take what I write here seriously and take what happens when BABIES HAVE BABIES, wouldn’t the shared sense of the sacred , be  that which is @ the essence of all things?


Monday, September 14, 2009


I came upon a quote that read, "IT IS NOT YOUR ENVIRONMENT, IT IS YOU – THE QUALITY OF YOUR MINDS, THE INTEGRITY OF YOUR SOULS & THE DETERMINATION OF YOUR WILL THAT WILL DECIDE YOUR FUTURE & SHAPE YOUR LIVES." And this quote confirmed my belief that OUR behavior is influenced by what we think about ourselves and the world, and a LARGE number of us are imprisoned by false beliefs which generate behaviors that keep us among the poor in every nation. We all, to varying degrees as poor people socialized under the GHETTO mentality, have internalized a set of beliefs that compel us to serve the needs of a mind-set while BLATANTLY neglecting our development. These are THE INVISIBLE CHAINS THAT BIND US…So how do we EMANCIPATE ourselves from the dungeon of false beliefs about ourselves, others and the world around us? Though it is SO DEEPLY entrenched, the intergenerational, mental disorder afflicting us AND the effort to liberate ourselves from psychological enslavement is NO easy feat. It would appear to me that  the emotional effects of slavery have weighed us down for far too long and our ancestors did the best they know how…But do you think they’d be proud of what we’ve made of strength AND courage today? Today, our emotional slavery in large measure is self-imposed; we have allowed a mind-set to imprison us in the GHETTO way of life, concepts AND beliefs. In short, we have been contained by our infatuation with crossing that river; therefore, we haven’t moved a muscle. However if we are to achieve OUR salvation, it will NOT come by living ALL THINGS GHETTO, but only from being our authentic, human selves. Gated communities have the mind-set that they are, therefore they are…They live as if they can rearrange OR change their life conditions without outside approval or assistance. Because they believe deeply that they are THE CAPTAINS OF THEIR FATE and THE MASTERS OF THEIR DESTINY, they feel empowered, optimistic, creative, productive, energetic, and positive. Because of this deep faith in themselves, they get what they need AND want by taking calculated risks to fulfill their dreams. Such people are successful and such communities are autonomous, wholesome places to live and raise children. Think about it…Literally from birth to death, we are awash in a sea of disinformation, misinformation, half-truths and whole lies about who we are AND what we REALLY represent. Is this accidental, part of a finely crafted, life-long campaign to stop us from connecting with ourselves? The actions shown in THE GHETTOS of the world say YES, but who is funding the campaign? If we don’t ask ourselves these questions, how are going to decolonize ourselves AND destroy these DEEPLY rooted, interconnecting networks of the internalized GHETTO? Isn’t it time that GHETTO folks stand up AND declare total war on their own GHETTO frame of mind? Is it that difficult to MERCILESSLY ATTACK the instruments and agents, deconstruct its intellectual base, and thereby break out of conceptual GHETTO incarceration? Year after year the game NEVER changes…only the playing field, while SO many are content with just completing school and getting a job to scrap by…I KNOW WHAT I HAVE BEEN TOLD, I KNOW WHAT THE MASSES SAY…BUT CAN SOMEONE, ANYONE TELL ME WHY WE CAN’T WORK LITTLE BY LITTLE & GET OURSELVES OUT OF THE CLUTCHES OF THE GHETTO? THE GHETTO IDEOLOGY THAT MOST SUBSCRIBE TO DOES NOT YIELD A HAPPY SOLUTION, SO WHY HOLD ONTO IT? HOW CAN MOST OF THEM THINK THAT THEY ARE JUST DOING WHAT MUST BE DONE & REMAIN UNSTAINED FROM THE MORALLY DRAINING INFLUENCES OF GHETTO? IS IT ANY WONDER THAT MOST OF US LIVE BEHIND CLOSED DOORS WITH SOULS BLASTED BY PAIN? THIS THORNY ISSUE IS NOT GOING AWAY & WE MUST FACE IT & DEAL WITH IT DECISIVELY. IT IS NOT RIGHT FOR THIS ISSUE TO DESTROY GENERATION UPON GENERATION OF FOLKS THAT CAN BE SO MUCH MORE THAN THEY ARE…


In the second-season finale of True Blood, Maryann's plan comes to a surprising conclusion, as both Bill and Sam make serious sacrifices to try to put a stop to her. But wait, there's a whole lot more, as the residents of Bon Temps, specifically Eggs, have much difficulty dealing with the messy, memory-challenged aftermath, during which Jason and Andy will make life-changing decisions. The Queen reveals that she's the source of Eric's V-dealing operations, and she is none too pleased that Bill knows about it. Even with Maxine back to "normal," Hoyt and Jessica's relationship still has its challenges. And just when Bill and Sookie — who has begun to question whether she is even human — get ready for their happy ending, a juicy cliff-hanger postpones it...

  • We pick up right where we left off, with Tara and Eggs preparing a nest for "the egg," and we still have no idea what it all means. Lafayette instructs them to take the egg downstairs — "This means he's coming," says Tara — and tells Sookie to take off her clothes. For a second, I thought this was going in a very confusing, dangerous, uncomfortable direction, but no, he just wants her to change into a white gown.

  • You see, Maryann is planning a wedding — to her god, who should be arriving, oh, any minute now. She's even wearing Sookie's grandmother's wedding dress, and she wants Sookie to be her maid of honor. The image of Lafayette clapping upon hearing the news is one of the gazillions of tiny pleasures this episodes yielded. Go back and watch it again; it's priceless.

  • Tara, Arlene and Jane are all dressed for the event while Sookie ever SO defiant says, "I will not let this happen." Maryann wants Sookie to shock her again with her electrical hand thing she did before, but Sookie is unable to replicate that odd occurrence. Maryann reports that, since she can't control Sookie, she can't be human. "It'll be our little secret — what are you?" Maryann asks. "I'm a waitress; what the F&CK are you?" she replies.

  • A possessed Maxine is dancing like a banshee and when she tries to escape, she trips the alarm on an ingenious, red-string-derived security system that Hoyt has devised to keep his mother in check. "Norman Bates!" she shrieks at him.

  • "You're marrying Sam?" Sookie asks Maryann. Nope, Sam is just the ideal wedding gift, she reports. She explains coldly that Sookie is the bait, that once Sam finds out that she is being held captive, "he'll come running like a dog — maybe as a dog," she says with a cackle.

  • Meanwhile back at the castle, Eric is playing Yahtzee with the queen. "We play to 5 million," she reports with glee. "I heard about your maker; that blows," she tells Eric. They discuss the maenad in Menard Parish. The queen reveals that she doesn't know if the advice she gave Bill is "gospel or gorilla shit." She also expresses displeasure that Bill is in love with Sookie ("He is?" Hadley asks, excitedly), and warns Eric about falling victim to the same fate. It's here that the queen nonchalantly confirms that Sookie is not entirely human, which is a revelation sure to echo through future seasons.

  • Changing the subject, she asks abruptly, with a scary display of fangs, "How does [Bill] know that I'm having you sell vampire blood?" Eric assures her that Bill doesn't know she's the source of his V-dealing business. "You may be the strongest, oldest vampire in my queendom," she warns, "but if I wanted, I could own your fangs as earrings. Understand?" Eric says he'll "take care of Bill Compton" — whatever that means. And then it's back to Yahtzee... "You suck at this," she tells Eric.

  • Jason and Andy are armed and clueless as they storm the Stackhouse residence. Jason tells Andy, "Its times like these that this town needs a good man, and that man... is us." Naturally, all this is for naught, for as soon as they enter the fray of Maryann's faithful, they are immediately converted into black-eyed soldiers.

  • Sam and Bill are hiding out at Merlotte's with Arlene's kids when Bill drops a bombshell. He wants Sam to go to Maryann. Sam argues that giving himself up won't stop Maryann, but with a flash of his fangs, Bill forces the issue.

  • "What's with the egg?" Sookie asks for the perplexed audience. Maryann exposits that it's an ostrich egg, which represents fertility. For some reason, all the ladies in the wedding party have to lick blood off it. Jason and Andy break up the party to announce that Maryann's vessel has arrived.

  • Maryann sashays down the front steps, ready for her nuptials to get underway. Bill presents Sam to Maryann for sacrifice. "I will always be grateful to you," she tells Sam with the utmost of sincerity. Sookie is apoplectic with Bill's apparent deception, but he tells her to trust him.

  • "God with horns, worship him, bitches!' roars Laf, who plays a very convincing Dionysian servant. Maryann tells a story about Dionysus and how he was reborn when a piece of heart was placed in his mother's womb.

  • Sam is strapped-down and brought out for sacrifice and this is where Eggs stabs him square in the chest. Maryann takes the blood and anoints her neck with it. Sookie approaches Sam and begs for his forgiveness. She reads his thoughts and hears him say: "Destroy it, all of it!" She obeys, smashing the egg and, using her special electrical power, toppling the meat man.

  • Maryann is not pleased, and turns her wrath on her followers. "Allow me to sacrifice all of them for you!" she tells her god, as they all cringe and writhe. She plunges her hands into the earth and out pop those gnarly claws. In a flash, a chase ensues. Just as Maryann is about to bury her claws into Sookie again, a giant white bull appears in a clearing. Dionysus has arrived... maybe?

  • Her claws retract, and suddenly she's all moony-eyed and in love with her bull-headed suitor. "My lord, my husband," she says. "Oh, come, I'm here, my love. We're together at last." Just as tiny hearts and flowers are about to burst from Maryann's mouth instead of words, the bull gores her right through the chest, bringing forth blood as black as midnight. "My god, am I the one to be sacrificed?" she asks. "Yes, I'm the vessel, I'm happy to die."

  • But! At that moment, the bull's horns shift back into arms, and one of them rips Maryann's beating heart from her chest; and it  is naked Sam! "Was there no god?" Maryann asks, as Sam squeezes the heart in his palm and she rapidly decays and falls to the ground.

  • While everyone in Bon Temps snaps out of Maryann’s spell, Bill returns to give us the explanation for how all this happened. After Sam was stabbed, he drank Bill's blood to heal himself.

  • "We got her?" Jason asks, but Sookie has no time for her brother's idiocy, so she springs into action, asking Bill to bury Maryann's body and Jason to make sure everyone gets home safely. "It's all over now," Sookie tells Tara. "I have this sick feeling that it's not," Tara replies with heavy foreshadowing.

  • Once Maxine returns to "normal," she finds out that Jessica bit her. Hoyt tells her that Jessica was provoked, that in her zombiefied state, she said some nasty lies, including, he asks hopefully, all that jazz about Daddy killing himself? "You're nearly 30; you should know the truth," Maxine says, and this sends Hoyt on a tear, berating his needy mother for clinging to him, preventing him from being "an actual person." "I wish Jessica had just finished you off," he says contemptuously.

  • The good people of Bon Temps pick up the pieces — literally in Jane's case, as she finds her severed finger among the meat-man debris. Andy gets his badge back from a cowed Bud, and promises to remain sober. "You might have your faults, Andy, but at least you've got pants on," Bud says.

  • Sam sees a doe and starts to cry, remembering the loss of Daphne. Sam and Bill have a moment in which they both acknowledge they'd do anything for Sookie. As I grit my teeth to get through Stephen Moyer's wooden line readings in this scene, Sam says, with great significance, "You suffer a lot more hiding something than if you face up to it." He turns away and the doe is gone.

  • Inside, Eggs is freaking out, trying to wash the blood off his hands. He's confused and wants to see Maryann, obviously having no memory of what just went down. Tara says she doesn't want to dwell in the past. She apologizes to Sookie for bringing all this on everyone, but Maryann made her feel like she had a family. Sookie says she has a family.

  • Upstairs, Bill has cleaned up Sookie's bedroom, but there are only 41 minutes until sunrise. "Hold me for 40," Sookie sighs.

  • The next day at Merlotte's, a mystery woman sits at the bar and says to Sam, "Well, I certainly never expected anything like that to happen here." This is funny, clever writing because the mystery woman in question is Charlaine Harris, the author of the Sookie Stackhouse novels, to whom we all owe a great debt of gratitude.

  • Arlene's kids forgive her for her absence. "You kids shouldn't even know what that word means," she says to them. Terry buys the kids toy guns and says something sweet, and I look forward to seeing how this nontraditional family fares going forward. "When you went away for all that time, you didn't see Rene, did you?" the kids ask Arlene. "No, I think he's still on his vacation," she lies. "Yep, I'm pretty sure he's dead," one of them says after their mother walks away.

  • Jane's finger has been reattached, and her special gift for stretching the truth is intact again as well. Andy, who overhears her, decides to start truth-telling, since he knows more than many. His fantastical tale only makes them laugh, and they assume he's drunk. "It's Diet Coke with lime!" he screams. Jason calms him and explains that, despite their total lack of memory, they obviously saved the day. "If a tree falls in the woods, it's still a tree, ain't it?" he offers as explanation.

  • Sam tells Sookie he's going to go away for a few days, and they hug. As if on cue, a deliverywoman arrives with a package for Sookie. It's a dress, and Bill says he's going to take her out for an evening alone.

  • While Sookie looks lovingly at the lavender frock, Eggs appears. The gaps in his memory are making him crazy, and he wants her to help him fill in the blanks. She (foolishly?) does, and in a flash he sees that it was by his hand that Miss Jeannette and Daphne died, and that Sam almost did. Naturally, he's a little freaked out and he storms off ominously.

  • Jessica and Bill are leaving Compton Manor at the same time for their respective dates. Well, Jessica isn't really going a date; she says that she and Hoyt had a fight and that she needs to apologize. Bill is like a new man, and his demeanor is surprisingly kind and upbeat. Why is he being so nice? It's kind of cute, but I can't help but think that it means something.

  • Sam goes to see his adoptive parents, who abandoned him when they learned of his special gift. He wants to find his birth parents. His mother warns that they are bad people, but his dying father hands him a piece of paper that says, in ragged penmanship, "Melinda and JoeLee Mickens last known in Magnolia Arkansas I'm sorry."

  • While Jessica is presumably on her way to Hoyt's house, he's knocking on the front door of Compton Manor. Obviously, nobody is there. Like two ships passing in the night... The romantic metaphors end there though, because then we cut to a scene of Jessica making out with some redneck in a parking lot, and all of a sudden up is down and down is up. How could our favorite two lovebirds have gone so terribly wrong?

  • Ah, but it seems that Jessica's emotional outburst in the last episode should have tipped us off to the fact that her fragile state as a newly turned vampire wasn't going to just go away. We soon see that Jessica's assignation with the redneck is not exactly cheating on Hoyt; she has the need, the need to feed. At the same moment that Jessica lunges for the jugular, Hoyt leaves flowers on his undead lover's doorstep.

  • "The sight of you is not something I wish to share with others tonight," Bill said as he and Sookie prepare for their evening @ a French restaurant.

  • A distraught Eggs approaches Andy outside Merlotte's, brandishing Maryann's blood-encrusted dagger, and says that he's the killer and needs to be locked up. Andy tries to reason with him, but his erratic behavior is a little disconcerting. He pushes Andy into the dirt and appears to lunge at him with the knife. At that moment, a gunshot goes off and Eggs is shot in the head.

  • It's Jason who pulled the trigger, and his Rambo posturing comes to an abrupt halt as he starts freaking out about having killed someone. In short order, Andy agrees to cover for him, and Jason takes off into the darkness. The patrons and staff of Merlotte's empty into the parking lot, and it's kind of devastating to see Tara wail over her lover's presumably lifeless body.

  • Back at the French restaurant, "I can't think of a better way to top off the best meal of my life," Sookie says as she polishes off her dessert. "I do have one last thing," Bill says. With that, he produces two plane tickets to Burlington, Vermont (where vampire marriage is legal) and a diamond engagement ring. He's proposing!

  • At the point in the story where Sookie should be beaming and shouting "yes, yes, 1,000 times, yes!" instead we see doubt creep behind her eyes and flutter across her face. It's not the best time, she says. What would it be like to be married to a vampire? Maybe I'm not even human. In a characteristic Sookie huff, she runs off to the ladies' room to powder her nose and contemplate her entire undead future.

  • In front of the bathroom mirror, though, she slowly tries on the ring and suddenly, we see that smile, the smile that says yes. As she composes herself, we cut back to the table and see a pair of gloved hands pull a silver chain around Bill's neck with a sharp sizzle. "Yes, Bill Compton, I will marry you!" Sookie cries as she re-enters their private dining room, only to find Bill is gone and the place in foreboding disarray.

What did you think of "Beyond Here Lies Nothin'"? Were you happy with how Maryann's storyline concluded? What's with all the love lost (Tara and Eggs, Hoyt and Jessica, Sookie and Bill)? What did Eric mean when he told the queen he'd "take care of" Bill? Could it be that Bill's silver-wielding, glove-wearing assailant is a fellow vampire?


After five weeks on MTV's America's Best Dance Crew Vogue Evolution's got eliminated. I know I am a week late on this story, but I was hoping that it wasn’t true because I was REALLY pulling for them. Vogue Evolution performed the "Halle Berry", a dance set to the hit rap song by Hurricane Chris as they found themselves in the bottom two for the first time in a dance off with rival crew We Are Heroes.

Coming off of a drama filled week where ABDC judge Lil Mama unfairly mentioned transgender member Leiomy Maldonado's original gender during a critique saying, "You were born a man and you are becoming a woman. If you’re going to become a woman, act like a lady." Lil Mama apologized days later after GLAAD received a barrage of e-mails criticizing her remarks. So I tip my hat for what they’ve accomplished thus far and I don’t know about you, but I am DAMN proud of them…

Sunday, September 13, 2009


RELIGION: the push-button Zion of those who have made it and therefore have it made. There, amidst the comforting oasis in a chaotic world, most give praise to God as they are being sold self-denial to pamper their souls. I often wonder if the URGENCY of the Cross ever be made real to those who cocoon in front of an entertainment center and insist on defining hell as that damaged place AND heaven as the proper side of town? Moreover I often wonder about persons that live in a GHETTO area OR substandard conditions…how do they feel that the church serves them? When I think about this, my spirit is both peeved and stirred by the neighborhoods of such places. I'm moved by the fact that there are generations upon generations that somehow kept subscribing to the mantra that things will get better because PASTOR tells them that God will make a way somehow…The result of many persons in the GHETTO that left themselves behind AND now find themselves with NO spiritual heritage AND even less personal faith of their own. It is MOST disappointing that they over-identify the shortcomings of their lives while NOT trying to do anything about fixing things themselves. But then again, who cares? Didn’t God somehow abandon them, thus it is HIS responsibility to help GHETTO folks out of their caves? SO GHETTO folks live as if they are forged into dark jungles with unknown dangers lying ahead. They have this misconception that the QUALITY OF LIFE is better in the gated community rather than the substandard places they live. And rightly so, BUT ISN’T THE GHETTO a STATE OF MIND & NOT a STATE OF BEING? Therefore it is sensible for persons living in the GHETTO to have a mindset that RELIGION will fix things for them? Does it make sense to believe that God will give us if we ask him for it? How can they NOT see that they are placing their RELIGIOUS WELL-BEING OVER their SPIRITUAL WELL-BEING? For a lot of folks living in the GHETTO, it is NOT “either or” it’s “both and everything else”. Waiting on folks to be interested in  GOD'S message demands patience, because it is DIRECTLY related to need…if only they could ask God to give them eyes to see that where they live isn’t the problem, but how they choose to live is…SO many of them socialize BEFORE they evangelize…talk about worshipping God in spirit AND truth while settling for religious rituals…THE GENERATIONS WHO ARE LOST IN THE MALAISE OF WHO THEY ARE & WHAT GOD IS CAN BE OF GREAT INFLUENCE TO THOSE THAT COME AFTER THEM, BUT THEY ARE SO CAUGHT UP IN THE CHURCH FIXING THINGS THAT THEY DON’T HAVE THE TIME TO TEACH US WHAT GOD REALLY IS ABOUT. HOW CAN THEY NOT TAKE THE TIME TO STRATEGIZE ABOUT HOW TO INFLUENCE THE INFLUENCERS SPIRITUALLY & THEN WONDER WHY THEY ARE NOT INFLUENCING THEM? IS IT BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT TALKING TO US WHERE WE ARE, IN A LANGUAGE FAMILIAR TO US? I KNOW THAT THE ONUS IS NOT ON THEM TO MAKE THE EFFORT, BUT ON US TO PUT OURSELVES SECOND & LIVE WITH EACH OTHER INSTEAD OF AROUND EACH OTHER….WOULDN’T THAT BE GOD’S DESIRE FOR EVERYONE FROM THE GHETTO  TO THE GATED COMMUNITY? WHEN THE LIFE OF ONE INFLUENCER IS FREED FROM FEAR, DEATH and HOPELESSNESS…THINK WHAT THE SUBSEQUENT RIPPLES OF RECIPROCATION WILL BRING…THE VERY THOUGHT OF SUCH ENERGY JUST RUNS RAMPANT THROUGH MY SPIRIT BECAUSE IT CAN GIVE THE GHETTO  THE HEALING IT SO DESPERATELY NEEDS…

Saturday, September 12, 2009


"Together Again" is a song by American singer

 Janet Jackson from her sixth studio album,

The Velvet Rope (1997). Produced by Jackson and

Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, it was released as the album's second single, and achieved commercial success worldwide. The song was a tribute from Jackson to friends who had recently passed from

AIDS, as stated on album booklet of The Velvet Rope. Originally written as a

ballad, the track was re-arranged as a dance song. The song became Jackson's eighth number one on the

Billboard Hot 100—the only U.S. chart-topper from The Velvet Rope—and peaked at number eight on the

Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. The single sold nearly six million copies worldwide, and became one of the biggest-selling singles from a female artist in the history of the

UK Singles Chart, where it peaked at number four. The song is Jackson's biggest international single, reaching the top five and the top ten in many countries. This song is dedicated to a friend that fought a LONG & HARD battle with HIV/AIDS for more than 20 years…may his soul rest in peace…Think of him, it makes one realize that you only live once and we have to make the best of life’s moments...Because What really matters @ the end of all of this is that you made the best use of time, and done everything that you needed to do in this lifetime…

Friday, September 11, 2009


Are you someone that understands the TRUE nature of reality? Can you perceive DEEPLY that we all emanate from the same source, that we are all essentially one? Do you think that we are here on earth to LOVE one another? IF YOU REMEMBER THIS DAY & THIS DAY ALONE THEN YOU HAVEN’T AWAKENED TO THE TRUE NATURE OF LIFE & ITS BLESSINGS…

Thursday, September 10, 2009


The M. U. I. is the MEN’S UNDERWEAR INDEX and I read this interesting article of how it relates to the economy: Are men buying more underwear? That may be the key to determining when the recession will be over.

For one answer to the world's most pressing economic question -- when will the recession end? Just take a peek inside the American man's underwear drawer.

There may be some new pairs there, judging by recent reports from retailers and analysts, and that could mean better days ahead for everyone.

Here's the theory, briefly: Sales of men's underwear typically are stable because they rank as a necessity. But during times of severe financial strain, men will try to stretch the time between buying new pairs, causing underwear sales to dip.

``It's a prolonged purchase,'' said Marshal Cohen, senior analyst with the consumer research firm NPD Group. ``It's like trying to drive your car an extra 10,000 miles.''

The growth in sales of men's underwear began to slow last year as the recession took hold, according to Mintel, another research firm. This year, Mintel expects sales to fall 2.3 percent, the first drop since the company started collecting data in 2003.

But the men's underwear index may also have a silver lining. Mintel predicts that next year, men's underwear sales will fall by only 0.5 percent, and as with many economic indicators, a slowing of a decline can be welcomed as a step in the right direction.

Retailers are reporting encouraging signs in the men's underwear department. Sears spokeswoman Amy Dimond said stores are beginning to see more sales. At Target, spokeswoman Jana O'Leary said sales have been stronger over the past two months and multi-pair packs are moving. Macy's does not break down performance of specific lines of business.

No less an oracle than former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan has given this theory credence, as described in a report on NPR two years ago.

But you don't have to take his word for it. Just ask Kenneth Sanford, 59, of Capitol Heights, Md., about his underwear. He said he usually buys new boxers every three months or so in maroon, black or white. But he's having a hard time finding a new job, and he hasn't bought a new pair of underwear in at least eight months.

``It's been a while now,'' Sanford said. ``I just don't ever go shopping.''

Of course, there are more conventional indicators of the nation's economic health. The gross domestic product fell 1 percent during the second quarter. Consumer spending and confidence have been on a roller coaster this year. Home sales show some signs of bottoming out. But sometimes, it is the little things that can be the most telling.

Leonard Lauder, chairman of the cosmetics company Estee Lauder, famously looked to lipstick sales as a barometer of consumers' mind-set during the last downturn. He believed that women were looking for small indulgences to lift their spirits during a tough economic time, though that theory has not held up in this recession, as sales of lipstick at mass retailers fell 8 percent over the past year, according to the research firm Information Resources.

Others look to a reported rise in prescriptions of anti-depressants and sleep aids last year as a sign of consumers' fragile state.

But perhaps no other purchase is as intimate as underwear. Few, if any, other people see it, so it's an easy place to skimp. According to Mintel, men buy an average of 3.4 pairs of underwear in a year. But from 2004 to 2008, the proportion of men buying single pairs at a time increased from 5 percent to 8 percent, while the share of men opting for packs of four or more fell slightly, to 66 percent -- indicating that shoppers may be trying to save money by buying only when necessary.

Cohen, of NPD, said he hoped the recent positive signs in men's underwear will spill over into other need-based purchases. With the recession nearing two years, shoppers are at the stage where their stuff is simply beginning to wear out, providing an incentive to return to the stores.

``The consumers may be down, but they're not out,'' said Cohen, who is bullish on an economic recovery.

``If this were a true, deep, long, embedded recession, they wouldn't even be buying underwear.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


It has been said that people enrich our lives in SO many ways. Through a magical combination of similarities and differences, we offer each other the opportunity to know ourselves as we help each other grow into who we want to be. Our similarities attract us to each other, comforting us with familiarity when we see ourselves in one another. So that means we UNCONSCIOUSLY acknowledge that we are each other’s mirrors…reflecting ourselves back to us. But I often wonder what is reflected back when an individual says they are HAPPY for whatever good thing happens to someone while wishing it were them instead? Can one TRULY be HAPPY for another even if they aren’t HAPPY for themselves? I feel that we all want to be the kind of people who are happy for others when they experience success or a cause for celebration in their lives, but it isn’t always easy…is it? I mean if you are single N’ fed up with men (relationships) and I go on and on about my relationship with Noel, do you really wish us well each and every time you say it? Do some POWERFUL, DARK FEELINGS come up @ times when decorum dictates that you should be feeling the opposite? Do you feel like reaching out N’ celebrating for us…OR do you want to rise and feel your own pain? How hard do you find it to congratulate another AND celebrate their success as if it were your own? I know that the struggle with being happy for others presents itself early in life. As a child if we wanted a toy that another child has, wouldn’t we intuitively try to get it OR break down in tears? Aren’t those primal feelings still present in most of us today? Over the years, I’ve found that is when I care enough for someone to let go of what I want for myself that I grow as a person. Despite the fact that it is difficult to have ourselves suspended between wanting the toy AND throwing a party for our friend who got the toy. Looking beyond that and thinking about others, it is in throwing the party that we share in the joy and, to some extent, the toy…so rather than cutting ourselves out of it, we extended ourselves to celebrate the happiness for another. And it is @ this time we can TRANSFORM our lives, and in the best-case scenario, we experience a constant flow of HAPPINESS in and out of our lives…SO WE MUST REMEMBER THAT HOW WE, FEEL PROFOUNDLY INFLUENCES HOW WE PERCEIVE OUR REALITY & KNOW THAT THE MORE WE TRY TO EXPRESS TRUE HAPPINESS FOR ANOTHER, THE MORE HAPPINESS WE ATTRACT…