MNR: The COVID War
“Vacciation is a personal choice.”
An infamous half-truth told by many
As of today, 7.26.2021, less than half of America is fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The exact number stands at an underwhelming 49.1%. As of 7.19.2021, the CDC reports that over 56% of Americans aged 12 or older are fully vaccinated. In order for herd immunity to be reached, that number needs to be much closer to 80%. For those unfamiliar with the term, herd immunity is defined as immunity or resistance to a particular infection that occurs in a group of people or animals when a very high percentage of individuals have been vaccinated or previously exposed to the infection. Make it make sense, Mr. Monday. Certainly.
If four of five people in this country are fully vaccinated, COVID numbers eventually will permanently fall off a proverbial cliff, and America will finally be able to turn the corner on this atrocity. Now, to me, that sounds very simple and palatable. Unfortunately, politics and prior precedent have all but assured that this will never happen in this country. The politicization of COVID has polarized America, largely along party lines. Liberals (Dems) tend to favor the vaccine while conservatives (R’s) tend to reject science altogether. Ultimately, it doesn’t really matter in which direction the finger is pointed. 48 states have reported increased cases. New cases have increased by more than 50% in 34 of those states. Florida and Arkansas are on COVID fire. Hospital ICUs are filling up again, only this time there are more younger patients than ever before. What is the reason for all this fuckery? The answer is simple. Delta.
The Delta variant, the latest mutation of COVID, has proven to be much more aggressive than other variants. “It is the fastest, fittest, and most formidable version of the virus.” Originating in India, it spreads much more easily from person to person, increasing infections and hospitalizations worldwide. In the US, the Delta variant represents about 83% of new infections. So far, unvaccinated people comprise about 97% of severe cases.
A study in China found that people infected with the Delta variant carry 1,000 times more virus in their noses compared with the initial COVID-19 strand that originated in Wuhan. Virologist Shane Crotty of the La Jolla Institute for Immunology in San Diego noted that Delta is 50% more infectious than the Alpha variant first detected in the UK. Initially, the CDC reported that being indoors and unmasked in proximity and with close contact to the infected could transmit COVID within 15 minutes; that has diminished to ONE SECOND with the Delta variant (statistics courtesy of CNN and Reuters). My God…
I won’t continue to drown you in statistics that show just how fucked up the situation is becoming in America (again). But do know that in two weeks, the positivity rate in Florida damn near doubled, from 7.8% to 15.1% the week of July 2. That’s ridiculous. So…what can be done to change all this? The answer is simple. Penalize the unvaccinated.
Vaccination is a personal choice. This is true. But so are driving through a red light at an intersection or smoking cigarettes in a car with children present. Even an idiot knows that both can have dire consequences. I see things going in the direction of no vaccination, no privilege. Concisely, I think the day is fast approaching when the lack of a vaccination will mean loss of employment, the barring from being able to attend events like sports and concerts, and a few other things that will piss off a percentage of the population. Former Surgeon General Jerome Adams said that the only thing in the way of this becoming a reality is full approval (licensure) of COVID vaccines from the USDA. Then, Adams added, the military will be able to mandate vaccination for all employees. After the military sets the precedent for these mandates, many (if not most) companies will follow suit. Certain universities have already begun to mandate vaccinations as a prerequisite for attending in the fall. As of today, the Department of Veterans Affairs will require its health care workers to get vaccinated. New York City will require all of its municipal workers (including PIGS and teachers) to get vaccinated by mid-September or face weekly COVID testing. Ditto for employees in the state of California. The NFL, by far the most popular and profitable American professional sports league, has drawn its line in the sand. Under the new policy, it will not extend its season for outbreaks. The season, an 18 week, 17 game schedule, will not offer a week 19 for makeup games. It will also deem any game unable to be rescheduled a forfeit for the team who is responsible for the outbreak. The responsible team will have to cover financial losses for BOTH squads. I heard that, Goodell.
FYI: the NFL is currently at a 50% full vaccination rate. 78% of players have had one shot. 14 teams have at least an 85% vaccination rate. Even the mercurial Jerry Jones, owner of the Dallas Cowboys, has adamantly expressed his favor for the vaccine.
Now that I’ve given you all the applicable and irrefutable data, it’s time for me to talk my shit. Yes, refusal to get vaccinated is a personal choice. It’s well within your rights. It’s also supremely selfish from a common-sense standpoint. I’m going to address common sense because I don’t have the time to argue with ignorant reasoning and completely unfounded conspiracy theories. I’d rather side with science and the data it yields. If you want to enjoy open restaurants, bars, sports venues, clubs, and any other place you go to have a good time, it’s imperative to get the shots. That way, you protect yourself and others. That’s pretty forthright. Nothing is complicated, at all. If you choose to shun vaccinations, stay your selfish ass at home. Don’t mingle. Stay in your box. Or being that that’s not realistic, please mask up when in public. Don’t be a super spreader.
Like I said, I can’t and won’t argue with anyone vehemently against being vaccinated. That’s your personal choice. Now, I can’t lie and say I don’t care about your reasoning. I care very much. It pains me to hear from my own people that their reasoning for not getting vaccinated lies within some dumb ass, backwoods conspiracy theory or outright fallacy. It hurts that we’re so broken that we’d much rather side with ignorance over science and common sense. Please miss me with your Tuskegee Experiment rationale. It’s only exacerbated when this type of reasoning is used as justification for refusal. There’s no question that we’ve been done super-duper dirty by the Fed since forever. You’ll get no argument from me. But common sense should lead you to the reasoning that times have changed quite a bit in the realms of communication and information. I’m not saying that we’re not lied to by our government. But the common sense in me says that in this era of whistleblowers and outright snitches, someone somewhere would have completely exposed the COVID vaccine if it were an agent of slow death exclusively created for the eradication of Black folk. Further evidence – I’VE BEEN FULLY VACCINATED FOR MONTHS. I have diverse pre-existing medical conditions. The most I felt after being jabbed was pain in the area of the shot and lethargy for a few days after the initial shot. That is all. And trust, none of you are more cynical and incredulous than I. But I had to stop listening to the bullshit and tap into the science. I had to drop the excuses. I had to cowboy up. Just get the damn shots if you’d like to see America return to pre-2020 form. If not, expect this to continue in perpetuity.
tymonday: @tymonday on Twitter & IG
crewunb: @crewunB on Twitter & @theunbearablescrew on IG
MNR: Uncomfortable Truth
I’m so sorry for having to be the bearer of bad news, but delta, the latest demon COVID variant, is one bitch of a virus. It’s taking MF out left and right, damn near all being unvaccinated. Look, I’m not Dr. Anthony Fauci (all my first pitches are accurate and on point). I’m not blogging to tell you how fucking stupid you are and how dumb you sound for every excuse you have for not getting vaccinated. I don’t give a fuck how close we may be. I’m speaking my opinion, which just happens to coincide with scientific truth. It’s your life. But what about your granny? What about your chirren? Delta LOVES infecting kids. What about all your fat, diabetes riddled nuccas who hit the blunt and/or J with you? I know, I know. It’s all a government plot to kill Blacks, uneducated whites, and all MAGA Republicans. I’m not a resident of California, but I’m taking Governor Newsom’s cue (mandate) and masking up everywhere I go…wait…I never stopped. A Yankee Stadium visit? No fucking way. I planned to, but not now. Just like all the MLB stadiums, ain’t no mask mandate or COVID screening requirements – for now. They’ll be back shortly, along with other restrictions. Mark my words.
NOW TO PLAY THE DEVIL’S ADVOCATE
My pragmatic side and my capitalist side are constantly at war over COVID. I fear any type of Governor Murphy mandate that will again COVID cap venue capacities and limit or restrict indoor dining at restaurants. The economy has suffered immensely. American morale has suffered immensely. It fucking sucks. But being that we have about 40% of the country that refuse to be vaccinated (which is well within their idiot-minded rights), mandates and restrictions are sure to return. The typical American is so self-centered and devoid of “informative” and accurate information that they don’t even know that SEVERAL states are [again] under all-out COVID assault. Hospital ICUs are [again] filled to capacity in several places throughout America. It’s only a matter of time before healthcare professionals are [again] stressed to the point of no return. It’s all coming back around…again. Yet, the band continues to play on. We’ll revisit this blog in a couple of months. I pray that my assessments are completely off and youse all talk about me in the streets and on social media. “That fat nigga don’t know shit! [What the] fuck he be talking about? He’s just tryna scare us.” I’ll gladly take that L. But common sense and CDC data speak otherwise. We shall see.
P.S. – If herd immunity is reached, COVID would be an afterthought. But that isn’t even within imagination without about 20-25% of the nation employing common sense and deprogramming themselves from what they see and hear on Fox News, OANN, Newsmax, Facebook, and in reefa clouds and barbershops. We Americans are some dumb, selfish motherfuckers.
There are so many signs in our everyday lives that we have progressed to a point of no return as a people. I’m not talking about life and death shit (for once), I’m talking about every day, mundane shit like…let’s say collectibles. You know, sports cards, Pokémon, whatever. My chronicles on how fucked up the sneaker game is have long since been documented on MNR. Take a look through the archives and you’re sure to see several instances where I’ve discussed how fucked up the sneaker game is, chiefly due to bots and resellers. Cool. I pick my battles. If I really want a particular sneaker, I make sure my credit card information is on deck and I make sure I’m on point when a shoe is released. And, of course, I take my Ls in stride after I miss out because the shoe has already sold out in five fucking seconds. I wait to see how nasty the resell market is, and I make the decision on whether or not to [over] pay. It is what it is. There hasn’t been a reseller yet to hold a gun to my head. I can bitch and complain all I want, but it’s my decision to click “buy” on StockX or GOAT and pay about $130 over retail on average. It is what it is. But damn it, how could I have been ignorant enough to not expect the same shit when I made my foray (re-entry) into the world of sports cards collecting? Sure, I’d taken a 25-year hiatus. But damn, I had no idea I’d be swimming in the exact same polluted waters I’ve already been swimming in the past half decade or so dealing with the sneaker resell game. Boy was I wrong.
The days of walking into your local WalMart or Target and scooping a pack or box of your favorite sports cards are Dundee. A few months ago, some MF in a random Midwest town decided to pull his pistol out in a Target because he was angry that the next dickhead had scooped the last of the cards he wanted. Smmfh. Granted, I woulda been pissed too, but not pull my Glock out and threaten to kill a MF over some Topps or Donruss pissed. But like I said, I get it. These days, a MF will know exactly when his local retail store or hobby shop re-ups on cards. They pull up on that day at opening time and smooth buy out the entire inventory. Their next move? eBay, a Facebook page, or [again] StockX for resell. For context, boxes that retail for $19.99 typically resell in the thirties. That doesn’t seem like a lot (it’s not), but the mere fact that the average collector can’t walk into his neighborhood retail spot and cop makes the shit super nasty. For me personally, it’s the extra bread. I pay (I have no choice), but I HATE being nickeled and dimed when I SHOULD (lol – I’m such a first-world elitist) be able to walk into my local retail spot and cop my box a week in peace. As much as I hate the reseller (other than Lo, my beloved lil bro and plug), I respect the hustle. My blame is with the retail spots. How about limiting transactions to one box per customer? Big ups to the places that do. But I watch a lot of YouTube. Plenty of MF walk right into these places and buy out the entire inventory in one swoop. Naturally, the narcissistic individualist in me first allows me to feel for myself, but I also really feel for the kids in their nascent stage in this esoteric part of the culture. They’ll never get to enjoy the thrill of walking into their local spot and copping a few packs of cards out the retail box for the sticker price. That, to me, is a damn tragedy. Add collectibles to the RIP list of shit you used to be able to cop with no problem. What’s next? Water? Bread? Milk?
Big ups to all the Black men out there who are faithful to their ladies. I read a blog on social media about an everyday cat with a wife and a couple kids who had the opportunity to bag a baddie but abstained. The woman was an 8.5-9 and was DTF. And not delusional DTF; she all but handed this guy the drawz and spare apartment keys. Ole boy stated that it would just have been sexual; there was no chance of developing feelings or beginning a new (and costly) relationship. They guy stated that he was committed to his queen and his family. As tempting as the opportunity was, ole boy didn’t yield to temptation. It made me proud, even though I don’t know the MF. A lotta women hate to accept the fact that a dick has a mind of its own. Lust is truly a deadly sin. Ain’t no sentiment attached to it; men just want to fuck. Outside of humans and less than a handful of God’s creatures in the animal kingdom, no male species is faithful to his mate. That’s science and nature talking, not me. Yet, somehow, plenty of us abstain. I’m not sexist or a hypocrite. Women experience the same feelings, I’m certain (I actually have no clue). But many of us, male and female, keep it all the way 100 with our lover. Big ups to all the lovers, especially the faithful ones.
For anyone out there who may be in financial peril, stick to the script God wrote for you. He’s faithful in all ways. You don’t have to compromise your integrity for a check. A lot of people will read this and assume I’m speaking in sexual terms, but I’m not. You don’t have to sell out in any way to gain financial success. What God has promised for you will be granted – on HIS time. It may seem like I’m being vague, but I’m specifically speaking to many. They know what I’m talking about. Keep doing what you do. What’s promised will come.
That’s all I have for y’all today. I pray for a healthy and productive week for all my folk out there, whether you read this material faithfully or in passing (Vada Fly voice). You are loved and appreciated. And when I reach the pinnacle of the blogging world, y’all are automatically VIP. I promise that even though I’ll most likely be Hollywood AF, y’all gon get the same Monday y’all been supporting from day one. Picture me rollin’.
tymonday.com; @tymonday on Twitter & IG
crewunb.com; @crewunB on Twitter & @ theunbearablescrew on IG
MNR: The Best of the Best
My fascination with the city of Paterson, NJ began about 20 years ago, when I came back up top to live after life in Virginia. Now, I was already somewhat familiar with the city [in name only] because I, like the rest of Black America, saw the movie Lean on Me at some point in time. Fair Eastside…
I don’t know if it’s just me, but when I saw the movie for the first time as a kid, the first thing that came to mind was that there was no way on earth a public school could be that crazy on a day-to-day basis. Boy was I wrong. Over the past couple decades, I’ve befriended a male and a female who both attended Paterson Eastside during the actual era of the film (mid-80s). Both went on to become educators. Both affirmed that Eastside was every bit as crazy as the movie revealed, if not crazier (WTF?). And when I finally made my way to P-Town to witness with mine own eyes…oh my (three googly eyes emojis)
I used to ride through Paterson with my uncle on a semi-regular basis. He had “friends” around the way, and he’d bring me along with him on visits. Other times, we just rode through Broadway and inhaled the sights and sounds. At the time, I was knee deep in those 100 Blocks, and we were under siege by the NYPD. The pigs were on some real bullshit, as evidenced by their “Stop and Frisk” and Red Zone initiatives. Red Zones were places defined by the mayor as high crime areas in which he assigned double the manpower on all shifts. The day-to-day effects were noteworthy, meaning they were hellish on us. For all of us in the projects at the time, that meant all types of harassment, from being pressed for standing outside our own buildings and/or being in the project plaza late night, to all-out assault for smoking outside. Undercover DTs loved to run down on MF and slam them on their necks before cuffing and arresting them. They harassed us ceaselessly. Paterson, on the other hand, was a utopia for fuckery. I saw heroin being distributed in open market fashion, from the Alabama Houses (RIP) to diverse street corners throughout the city. I once saw a couple strolling along on some random street on the Eastside, casually rolling a blunt in public in broad daylight like it was 2021. I couldn’t believe it! At the time, doing that type of shit meant being at risk for a sho’ nuff ass whooping and trip to the precinct and bookings. But not in Paterson.
Sadly, little has changed in Paterson in the last two decades. Crime is still a serious problem. Drug dealing/addiction, gang shit, and homicide are the dominant motifs. In that time, a whole new generation has been born and raised within the city limits. They inherited all of these problems. And, if anything, things have only gotten worse. But what about the children? Who’s there to protect the children in these situations and circumstances? Often, it comes down to grandparents and coaches. Strong emphasis on coaches.
Paterson has always been a breeding pool for great athletes, from Larry Doby to Tim Thomas to Victor Cruz to some kid you’ve yet to become acquainted with. That brings me to the thesis of this blog – the athletes of Team Best.
Team Best is one of the six teams that play in the Uptown Kidz Basketball Summer League in Englewood, New Jersey’s Mackay Park, aka The Jungle. They are 3-0 so far, and (in my opinion), the best team in the league, respectfully. They razzle and dazzle with ease; they have become a must-see attraction for fans of the league. Now that’s cool and all, but upon further examination, Team Best is nothing short of amazing. According to someone with intimate knowledge of the situation, most if not all the ballers on Team Best come from extreme circumstances, circumstances that even those of us who come from tough circumstances would agree are extreme. Yet, these kids travel to Englewood and put on a show every time they touch the court. The best players, #7 and a kid who said to call him Sim, are brimming with Division I talent. They regularly finish the break with highlight reel dunks. They shoot 28 footers like Dame Dollar or Chef Curry. They win and win big. But if you were to only look at facial expressions and demeanor, you wouldn’t know if they were up big or down 30. They embody a special brand of even keel, a type of calm usually associated with fighter pilots. I was mistakenly told that Sim had completed his high school career and was off to a prep school; I found out yesterday from Sim himself that that wasn’t true. Sim is a rising senior at Paterson Charter, a school that didn’t even exist when I first became acquainted with P-Town. I heard another kid on the team yell across the cage to another kid that he had to go because he had school in the morning. When asked about having to attend summer school, the young baller replied that Paterson Charter has one of those C-F type situations where anything less than an A or B is a problem. He didn’t receive an F, but he also didn’t receive an A or B. Wow! Good wow! Think about it: these kids are really out Paterson striving for success. They could easily attend other nearby parochial or non-public schools which would require much less academically. Instead, they are at an upstart school thriving amidst an academically strict environment. That says a lot to me. Those young men REALLY want to make it. I support every step of their journey. I’ll always root for my 07631 guys first and foremost, but those kids from Paterson have etched a place in my heart. Long live sport. Long live knowledge. Many blessings.
tymonday.com; @tymonday on Twitter & IG
crewunb.com; @crewunB on Twitter & @theunbearablescrew on IG
MNR: Thoughts – Room 6432, Bed 1
Peace to the nation (and when I speak of nations, please don’t make the deviation). Last week’s #MNR was as candid as can be. I held nothing back about my life and times; I rarely do. But it’s never easy. When you do such things, you really put yourself on the chopping block for ALL to potentially scrutinize. Oh well. That’s me. I’m a speak on it, even if it ends with egg on my face. This blog is short and sweet, yet it’s prodigious. Below are the candid and unfiltered thoughts from my two week “medical vacation” to begin 2020 (1.1.2020-1.14.2020). I recorded each entry exactly as it came to mind. As always, there was no filter. My thanks go to the Lord, my queen, my family, and my bro/Crew CEO Christian Eaddy. I wouldn’t have made it without them. Truly. CEO brought me a notepad on day two of my stay at Englewood Hospital. He told me it would be therapeutic to record my thoughts. I used the notepad for a few things, but I recorded the following thoughts in my iPhone notes. This is the first time that I’ve shared what I recorded with ANYONE. Shit, this is the first time I even looked at these notes in 1.5 years, though I never forgot that they were on file. I knew the day would come when it would be the right time to share the many thoughts I had in my mind amidst the worst two weeks of my life. Feel free to judge. Nothing has been changed, short of a couple grammatical errors. Roll that shit up and prepare for a short but bumpy ride. Let’s get it.
There’s nothing like being on someone else’s time when you’re naturally independent.
I’ve lost every shred of dignity in here.
“I’m bleeding. I don’t have legs.” (The serial yeller somewhere on this floor)
I think “Memory Lane” might actually be my favorite song off Illmatic.
I’m almost certain if I were a mutant, I’d be with Magneto’s crew and not Professor X.
“Baby when I tell you I love you I mean this life. Baby when I tell you I need you I mean these lights.” Camp Lo
Never been to prison but from what I’ve heard from my family and the homies I can say there are a lotta similarities between it and the hospital. MF yelling out all hours. Staff ignoring you. I’m stashing shit like saccharine packets and moist towelettes.
I feel for my life every morning. I’m quite certain that I’d be dying and these people would never answer the alarm.
Average sixth floor alarm response time: 17 minutes.
1.6.2020 (1.7.2020) - The person who’s supposed to put my CPAP mask on never came. And she asked ME what time...I said 12:30 AM. At 1:30 AM I took matters into my own hands.
The irony of finally appreciating the natural taste of Corn Flakes after a lifetime of dumping sugar in every bowl...
The same way this current generation of fans felt when Kofi Kingston won the WWE World Title is the way my generation felt when Ron Simmons won the WCW Championship.
Ole boy is still yelling. His voice is long reaching. I’m not even mad anymore.
If I enter a room, I speak to everyone I see.
I’ve had a postal manager and a Vietnam pilot as bunkies. Good men.
I find a way to push everyone away in my life.
There’s definitely a realistic scenario where I take my own life one day.
I prolly listened to Jeezy “Real Nigga Anthem” 85 days straight in 2012.
My new bunkie’s BPM suddenly dropped from 70 something to 30 and the whole squad filled the room faster than police response when white folks dial 9-1-1. I think he’s good now.
Code Blue means someone’s stopped breathing. I’ve heard it issued at least 15 times since my medical vacation.
Letters to God
Amy Winehouse “Just Friends.” I love and miss you girl. You really touched my soul.
Don’t know if I’d make it through this without my queen. She’s my MVP.
Mr. Thompson 2.0
We some kings, nigga.
Haven’t seen the sun in 14 days. Heard it’s raining today (1.14). I could care less. Just let the wind and rain grace my skin. I pray I’m released today as scheduled.
Not many can genuinely say they’ve received a second chance at life. It’s on me from here.
To the projects I’m ghost shorty wop, one love.