#MNR: Tammany Hall’s Plug
“So please pardon me if I’m cold as Vancouver. Mom was overworked on her jobs; Pops was a user.”
Ty Thompson, the Fly Gordo
I almost hate to mention my season amidst the valley (the bullshit I’m going through). I fully understand that most of us-skinned folk are usually amidst some type of season in the valley. C’est la vie. I’m no longer the sorry piece shit I was, the type to explode whenever a lent ear countered my “woe is me” narratives with the sagacity that it would be prudent to consider the fact that there are folk out there (in the world) who have it worse – much worse. Back when I was a horrible human being, that prudent insight would lead me into an expletive-laced tirade about how much I could care less about anyone else, that I was only concerned about ME. That made me the worst type of human, one incapable or unwilling to have empathy because of my own hubris. One day, the Lord got all in my business. I took over from there and provided the vitriol. “WHO THE FUCK ARE YOU TO BE SO DAMN IGNORANT? YOU SORRY PIECE OF SHIT. THERE ARE PEOPLE OUT HERE DYING BECAUSE THEY HAVE NOTHING AND YOU’RE ACTING LIKE A BITCH OVER SOME EVERYDAY SHIT? GET THE FUCK OUTTA HERE!!!” Yeah, that was the type of time I was on. I thank the Lord for delivering me from that mentality and the lifestyle it accompanied. I’m the polar opposite of the man I was. I ain’t the pastor, but I’m damn sure not that piece of caca anymore. Having said all of that, the little bit of strife I’m amidst ain’t really anything to talk about. It’s a small thing to a King. We Gucci. Now, let’s get this thing jumping like Derek Anderson when he boothed it over Shawn Bradley (RIP). Get your method, get your rollie, roll that shit, light that shit, and smoke that shit. If you’re on paperwork or you just don’t partake, pour one up to enjoy with this. If you don’t do any of that shit, you’re still welcome. I can’t lie though, I might gotta keep a set of eyes on you at the function if we invite you, ‘cause other than the pastor, errbody in this bitch getting typsy (I hated that shit until the day I didn’t hate it anymore – shout out to my bro Moats Jr.). Make sure y’all are strapped in. Leggo.
Of the 50 United States, only two are holding gubernatorial elections tomorrow on 11.2.2021. The irony? They are both states that I’ve lived in in my life, and I currently live in one. I’ll kill the suspense. Virginia and New Jersey are the lone states electing governors tomorrow. I’ll begin with VA because the action is quite a bit more intense in the commonwealth. Democrat Terry McAuliffe, governor of VA from 2014-2018, seeks to reclaim his seat tomorrow versus the Republican candidate Glenn Youngkin, who made his bones in the world of investment banking. The Virginia gubernatorial race is being seen by many (including me) as an early indicator of how the 2022 midterm elections may shape up. With the recent census, overt gerrymandering, and highly questionable election laws changes in many red states, Republicans stand an overwhelming chance to reclaim the House next November. Virginia, a state that has been blue for a few years now after years of being a southern red state, is as politically diverse a state as you will find in America. The race is close. Youngkin has walked McAuliffe down over the past couple weeks, with polls showing a dead heat and perhaps a Republican lean headed into tomorrow. Early voting has favored McAuliffe, but conservatives typically enjoy the “patriotic” act of waking their patriotic asses into the voting precinct and pushing buttons (I can’t be a hypocrite – I’m voting in-person tomorrow – but only cuz my dumb ass didn’t respond to the mail-in thingy they sent us months beforehand). We shall see how it all unfolds tomorrow. I have no clue who’s gonna win, but I’ll tell you this. If you read this blog fervently, you know I was at my alma mater for Homecoming a few weeks ago. I ALWAYS look for political signage/literature when I’m out and about election season. I saw about four Youngkin pieces for every McAuliffe piece, and I saw plenty. I mentioned it to Brandi. It stuck into my wig because since 2016, I’ve understood that heavy signage, knocking on doors, and candidates appearing in areas in-person leading up to the election can most certainly make a difference via the late push. Things may go Youngkin’s way tomorrow, but at the end of the day I think McAuliffe is gonna pull it off. He has the experience, and Northern VA, Tidewater, and RVA Black folk don’t play about putting their blind Dem votes in. Let’s see how it goes. As for the other race, err umm, the one in my state, we’ve got the incumbent, Democrat Phil Murphy versus the Republican candidate, Jack Ciattarelli. My personal opinion? Fuck ‘em both. I’m not voting for a damn R. PLOT TWIST: I’m also not voting for a damn Dem. I’m voting for whomever is running on the New Socialist ticket (I think that’s the name of the party). I gave up on Murphy when he played political games with all our unemployment extensions in late summer of 2020, the one that came from the federal level. I hadn’t returned to work yet. I, along with a lot of other New Jersey residents, was bleeding at that moment. I’m lying. I had some chicken in the stash. But I wanted what belonged to me (I ALWAYS need ALL minez). Murphy pulled a tasteless political stunt merely to give the finger to ole tRumpy. TRANSLATION: he didn’t accept the money for a few weeks. We didn’t get our money for like six weeks. I went on Twitter every damn day and read the mentions. A lot of folk suffered. You don’t play with people’s livelihoods, especially your constituents. I vowed I wouldn’t forget come election time 2021. Guess what, Phil? I didn’t forget, you punk MF. Having said all that, Murphy wins tomorrow. Easily.
BONUS ANALYSIS: Virginia, in addition to the governor’s race, is holding a vote on bringing a casino to Southside Richmond. It’s said to be Black [majority] owned and will bring hundreds of minority jobs to the region. They’ve got my guy Jamie Foxx as lead pusher man and Steve Harvey dem have been on his morning show imploring listeners in VA to vote YES tomorrow. I’ll leave my wooden nickel vote out of the discussion, but I will give you this. I lived in Highbridge, #BXNYC for the entire construction of the new Yankee Stadium, which was built on the old Mullaly Park. The team promised (whatever) percentage of construction jobs to qualified non-union area residents. They fell well short of the percentage they initially said it would be. I’ve read and heard about way too many pro sports stadiums that were built with the promise that there would only be minimal taxpayer money spent, that it would be mostly privately funded. It almost never turned out that way. Me stating the point is almost redundant, but I’ll state it anyway. Oftentimes, when big money projects are presented to a city’s taxpayers/voters, many of the promises made aren’t seen through. I just hope that those everyday folk out Southside get the lion’s share of the jobs and benefit from potential lower personal tax rates because of the revenue the casino will generate – if the vote passes. Again, we shall see.
I’VE SAID IT PLENTY OF TIMES. NOW I HAVE PROPER BACKUP.
The BBC (get y’all nasty ass minds out the gutter – British Broadcasting Corporation) named The Wire the greatest television series of the 21st Century [so far]. They had 206 experts from 43 different countries vote, and the tale of life in West Baltimore in the early 2000s took the crown. I have it as the best show ever, ahead of Martin and Seinfeld to round out my Top 3. True aficionados will agree that The Wire was as good as it was/is mostly in part to the fact that it was creator David Simon’s third attempt at greatness. Don’t get me wrong, the first two attempts were overwhelming successes. I tell every Law & Order fan that every show under the L&O umbrella combined couldn’t fuck with Homicide: Life on the Street on its worst day. Homicide (1993-1999) was Law & Order sans the pretty shit. It was gritty. It was emotional. Problems (cases) weren’t solved in 45-47 minutes; the FIRST case viewers were introduced to Season 1 wasn’t solved until the LAST season. The characters were much better developed and complex. Frank Pembleton (played by Andre Braugher), the cerebral and thorough star detective (lead character), suffered a stroke Season 4, and nearly died. He didn’t bounce back in an episode or two. His struggle lasted for seasons. Yeah. It was THAT deep. Shift Lieutenant Al Giardello (played by the great late Yaphet Kotto), affectionately known as “Gee” by his guys and ladies, was highly articulate and physically imposing yet humorous and good-natured. He was a monolith among mere police. His aura was amazing. Homicide also introduced the television world to the “murder board,” on which each detective on shift has a list of current and recent assigned cases listed under her/his name according to the last name and first initial of the victim. Closed cases are in black; open cases are in red. I could go on and on about how great Homicide is, but I’ll leave you with this. Homicide isn’t available on ANY streaming platform, including NBC/Peacock (it’s home network and its streaming service). To watch, you have to purchase the DVD set. It’s gonna run you about $400. Yeah. That way. After Simon’s network television impact and success with Homicide, he took his talents to HBO, where shit can get a lot realer. His second depiction of life in West Baltimore was a short series titled The Corner (2000). It aired in six parts and was grittier and more depressing than anything anyone had ever seen. It introduced us to the rawness that The Wire would later embody. But back to The Wire…when you walk through the garden…watch your back… The Wire was the first show I’d ever seen that didn’t give a fuck about a key character meeting an early and untimely death. MF died EVERY season. But in all seriousness, it was shot better than anything I’d ever seen. Can you even imagine what it was like filming in WB? No. No you cannot. There were characters that will forever be entrenched into your television psyche, from Omar (RIP MKW) to Michael to Chris Partlow to Snoop to Marlo to Avon to Wee-Bay to Bodie to McNaulty to Lester Freeman to damn near all of ‘em. The Wire introduced us to Michael B. Jordan WAY before he became an A-list celebrity. It was to us what 101-Recession Jeezy was to us. The first time you watched, you knew that whoever made it was plugged in. All the way in. I’ll stop there. If you have cable or HBO Max and for some God forsaken reason haven’t watched all five seasons, begin the first episode of Season 1 as soon as you finish this blog. Thank me next week. You’ll already be in it knee deep.
I don’t care if you’re Dem, R, Independent (like me) or whatever TF you are. If you’re registered to vote, take your ass out tomorrow and vote if you haven’t already. It’s bigger than national or state shit, a lot of times there are local bills on the ballot that will directly affect you, your family, and your community. I’m a firm believer that if you choose not to vote, your political beliefs are nonexistent. Shut your bitch ass the fuck up. I said it. Come see me if it’s a problem. I’ll be over your Auntie crib.
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