There is a phrase in our lexicon that manages to sum up one of many complex and damaging issues dealt with by the African-American community, and that is 'Driving While Black.'
In one pithy phrase, easily shortened in to an acronym that riffs on the charges for drunk driving, you can get across that sometimes simply being black (or brown) is believed to be probable cause for all manner of petty harassment by some law enforcement officers.
I got to experience this first hand while traveling with an old friend through the inner parts of Florida and it really opened my eyes to the reality of always being a suspect to some, for something well beyond your control.
I've been attending conventions for a long time for a lot of different reasons. The convention format is one of those great traditions that lets you network without seeming too pushy and relax around people who you're pretty sure have some understand about some portion of your life.
My favorite conventions are the ones held for fun, and a couple of weeks ago I had a great opportunity to initiate then witness the first flush of a completely wonderful Bronymance.
Follow me beyond the squiggle, won't you?
While we're not going to have to angst over the question of another season (season 3 of the show is already in production, and season 4 is pretty much a foregone conclusion after the ratings numbers that came back from the Royal Wedding episodes) we are going to have to put up with a long summer pony drought. This was hammered home over the weekend when I turned on the same Pony channel at the same Pony time, and saw no Pony.
For new fans, this isn't quite as much of an issue. If you haven't tapped season 2 yet, you're still in for some wonderful treats. Some of the best Cutie Mark Crusaders bits, Twilight's Epic Freakout in Lesson Zero and It's About Time, along with some fantastic Rarity and Rarity/Spike scenes in Sweet and Elite and Secret of My Excess. Fluttershy gets her due in a few episodes, and we also see the genesis of the whole "Rainbow Dash's wings are made of balsa wood" meme in Daring Do.
On top of all of that there are two two-part episodes in season two, The Return of Harmony and A Canterlot Wedding.
But what's to do when you've seen all the episodes, three or four times, and you need more pony?
Since I started watching MLP I've noticed bronies in the strangest places. A few dropped hits and suddenly complete strangers turn in to new friends. Such is the power of the brohoof and that's the intent of this group. We all know friendship is magic, so why not bring a little of that magic to the kos?
I live in a neighborhood that is much more ethnically diverse than the national average, and well beyond the typical neighborhood in Texas. There are Pakistani Muslims and Central African Christians, Hispanic Jews and Asian Agnostics. There are even a couple of White Buddhists here and there, but you wouldn't know it from looking at them. In short, the concept of the American Melting Pot is so alive and well in my little neck of the woods that I often forget that not everyone enjoys such diversity.
I also sometimes forget that the areas surrounding my little Model U.N. have had some of the highest rates of hate crime and racially motivated violence in the country. Not too long ago, a man was dragged to death behind a truck simply because he was black and it was considered pleasantly shocking that the men responsible were actually punished.
So what does one do when a new family moves in to the neighborhood, and brings ugliness in from the outside?
The Blaze is all, well ablaze, about certain portions of President Obama’s jobs bill. In a true sky-is-falling moment the site claims, and the commenters are in rabid agreement, that the real American Jobs Act "trashes" the Constitution, "overrides" State's rights, and leads us all to rump of skunk and madness.
I won't drive more traffic to that site, so please join me below the squigglethorpe for excerpts from the article and commentary.
I've always been a fan of space games, from Elite on the Commodore 64 to the Wing Commander series and beyond. The thought of venturing out in to the unknown for fun and profit has always been appealing to me, and some clever Icelandic folks have turned out a game that speaks directly to that part of the brain.
Explorers and traders, pirates and thugs, grizzled combat pilots and raw recruits, grubby space miners and monied industrialists, this game has something for just about everyone. The world is vast, spanning 7500 star systems, most of which are lawless frontier areas where the only rule is survival. Near the core of the galaxy a tenuous peace is maintained by the navies of the four ruling empires of the Eve universe.
For some, the U.S. space program has been like a high school year book that gets trotted out and cried over when a particularly rough day makes you nostalgic for those lazy summers and naive arrogance of youth. If you were lucky, it was your bread and butter. The never ending teat of government money and legitimacy guaranteeing the good life in great abundance.
Others saw it as a waste of time and talent. A pit in to which money and man-months were thrown without regard for what it was actually accomplishing. They interrupted 'I Love Lucy' for god's sake, how many more of these moon landings are we going to do before we focus on jobs?
I read a diary today that opened my eyes to an entirely new perspective. That of an outsider who saw only the pure product of our insanity. Someone for who the time dilation and air attenuation stripped away the noise and made the sharp edges indistinct and dreamy. The chariot of Apollo roaring across the sky, laden with a cargo of progress, rock and roll, and and heavy American achievement.
Me? I grew up in the aftermath of that beautiful wreck.
This is a non-political, non-issue related diary written in the middle of a raw, ragged, painful moment of loss and sorrow brought on by a dove.
It will be long, and rambling, and far too detailed about mundane things, but that's just how we're rolling tonight. Its also somewhat photo-heavy. Slow connections, ye be warned.
I wish this was me, but all glory must go to the Hypnotoad and my friend who goes by RomeroLand. He originally posted this piece on another forum, and I am re-posting it here.
Long story short, or is it short story long? Anyways, I received two postcards in the mail explaining that I can visit a website to get my absentee ballot. Absentee ballot? What the Fark? It's Oct 27th and the election is less than a week away!
In an effort to get out of the house, practice my photography, and do that neat trick where I synthesize vitamin D using only my skin and sunlight, I packed up the camera, met a friend and headed out to the beach.
I got a few photos, a sunburn, a broken stabilizer bar, and a lesson on political discourse. How did I fit this all in to a single day?
I work in a smallish office that nestled between another non-descript office building to the right, an apartment complex to the left, and a combination farm and workshop to the rear. For Houston this is a pretty normal configuration as mention of zoning laws gets you an odd look and shake of the head. However, that’s a diary for another time.
Working in this building, in addition to the normal office denizens, is a crew of six cleaning personnel who each put in about 10 hours a night at this building alone. Most of them also have day jobs, starting around 7am and they can expect to climb in to bed on the lower side of 2am. Of the six, none of them speak English well enough to hold a conversation and have to rely on instructions from their bilingual jefe. El Jefe it should be noted; who spends about thirty minutes on the job site and is home by 5:30 every afternoon. I know this because of a strange little coincidence that makes him my neighbor.