Monday, May 31, 2010

Tuesday's Word of the Week!

Each Tuesday, we have a little fun learning a seldom used word. Many moons ago, I read a simple yet effective book titled "Word Jam" ( a must buy) written by Walt "Clyde" Frazier. Yes, for those in basketball land, this is the Hall of Famer from N.Y. Knicks folklore. The sole purpose of this book is to develop and increase ones vocabulary. One of the greatest tools we can have in our tool belts (figuratively speaking) is the self mastery of the English Language.

So, We're dedicated to doing our part (not to mention I just love learning and using new words). Listed below are the very short and simple rules to our little game:

1. Practice how to spell and pronounce the word
2. Learn the definition(s)
3. Use this word as many times as you possible can this week!

This weeks word is:

"Caveat" Ca*ve*at (noun)~ A Warning or Caution
example: "There is one final caveat to our written agreement, all signatures in blue ink".

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Decoration's Day

Formally know as "Decoration's Day" Memorial Day is a remembrance of those faithful soldiers that gave the ultimate sacrifice to help preserve our way of life. According to most historians, Memorial Day as we know it was first proclaimed by Gen. John "Black Jack"Logan (1868) who served in the Union Army. If you Atlantans recognize this name (vaguely I presume) you may remember it through historical reference to the "Battle of Atlanta" (you know Gone with the Wind?). He also commissioned the "Cyclorama Painting located near the Atlanta Zoo. Gen. Logan was even selected to run as Vice-President along side James Blaine in the 1884 election (won by Grover Cleveland).

However, Prof. of American History David Blight from Yale paints a different picture. Mr. Blight tells a little know tail of former slaves in Charleston, S.C. who in 1866 exhumed the bodies of Union Soldiers from a mass grave (from a confederate prison camp). They then proceeded to place them in honorable individual graves. A few weeks later a celebration took place in honor of the men who lost their lives for their freedom...

"We cherish too, the Poppy red
That grows on fields where valor led,
It seems to signal to the skies
That blood of heroes never dies". (by Moina Michael)

So begins Summer...


Friday, May 28, 2010

"Black Men"! Let's Get Back on our Grind...

If you have not noticed, The U.S. has been plunged into despair by a recession many of us never saw coming. As a Nation, we are at an all-time high in unemployment. As a race it is "par"
for the course! African American job losses are soaring. The National rate for African Americans is 17.2% and climbing everyday with some states topping out at 20%.

The purpose of this blog is to take a look at the conditions for “A Black Man” in the U.S. now that we have our first African American President. We will ask all the right questions and speak with African Americans from coast to coast in determining the facts. However, with this topic you need only look in your own families to see its effects. Men far out pace the women in joblessness! Many African Americans I have interviewed, believe this Administration should do a better job to target our minority group with programs to correct the obvious disproportionate unemployment rates….NOT LIKELY!!!
With that being said, how are we going to get our community out of this decline?

“Black Men” we are going to have to start THINKING, DREAMING and LIVING outside those unfortunate boxes we have built for ourselves.


Many of our “Black Men” are unemployed (true), but this may just be the break you never thought was coming. Listed below are 5 {Just.Over.Broke} alternatives:
Let’s get back in the game “Men”

1.MLM- (Multi-level Marketing) 1860 - Traveling salesmen were known as canvassers, peddlers, hawkers and drummers. Some of these former peddlers created trained sales organizations. Had it not been for their influence, many of the corporate names we’re all familiar with today might never have been.
-Henry Heinz, a former peddler, created an organization of 400 salesmen to sell various vegetable products, like ketchup and pickles, to people who didn’t grow their own.
-Asa Candler, another former peddler, built a sales force to sell Coca-Cola syrup to restaurants after buying the formula from pharmacist John Pemberton for $2300 in 1886.
Out of these organizations came companies that allowed their salespeople to have their “own” business.
As you can see MLM’s are nothing new. Yet, in recent years there has been a influx of companies establishing excellent products throughout the U.S.
Here’s an excellent opportunity to earn a very decent income with a small investment. The best part of MLM is your investment allows you to take part of a system already in place. If you are willing to put in some time and energy you can earn at the very least part-time income.
2. Consulting- Many of us have a wealth of knowledge and experiences from our previous jobs. Corporations are at an all-time high with firing sprees, yet many of them are hiring consultants to work positions from outside the company’s umbrella. Also, depending on your particular expertise, you should be able to convert your knowledge into a need based business (computer repairs, teaching basic computer programs, teaching folks how to use their I-phones properly, graphic Art designs for social network ads, photography head shots for social medias) just to name a few. You simply have to be creative.
3. Real Estate Investor- Don’t listen to “They” out there who are telling you that real estate is dead! Have the values dropped miserably? Are people in bad loans? The answers are a resounding…YES! However, if you had the proper mentor, you would see where there is strife…there is opportunity. Real Estate will always be the #1 producer of wealthy people in the U.S. Keep in mind, there will always be a limited amount of land to buy and sell in the world. Don’t look now, but there are many investors buying up land and houses around the states who are chopping at the bit (waiting for the market to return)!
4. Start you own “Home based business”- Have you ever said to yourself “Boy if I had the time I would start (insert a business) or “Someone should open a service to do (insert the service)? There has been an influx on Millionaires created in the last 2 years due to one factor…THEY GOT FIRED! If you have that great idea, you have absolutely nothing to loose…GET STARTED! With the power of the internet and all these social networking sites, there is no excuse for a cheap way to market your product or service to the world.
5. Blogger/freelance writer- I just read yesterday a “How to make money online” by Yaro Starak through sponsorships. Yes, all you would be bloggers out there (We can actually earn a living doing this! LOL). Now, it takes practice and a certain knack for conveying your thoughts in a way that people want to hear what you have to say, but if you can master that (and there are tons of people out there that can teach you) you can do pretty well for yourself. Likewise, you (would be) writer barons can also find tons of freelance article work on the zillions of online blogs, websites and magazines. The pay won’t make you a millionaire but it can keep your lights on!

It is important that since we represent a large number of unemployed victims, we take some responsibility in resolving this crisis. “Black Men” have and always will represent a major created force in the U.S. Let’s take back our destinies and make the effort to think outside that damn Box! In fact as “Rev Run” said…Get rid of that damn box!


Saturday, May 22, 2010

Where were you when?

Nov. 4th 2008 the world as I knew it changed!!! For all African-Americans and most of the world, this day will serve as one of our generation’s “where were you when” moments. If you haven’t guessed by now, Nov. 4th 2008 was the day our Nation elected its 1st man of color! I don’t know about you but I grew up thinking there is no way I will be able to see this monumental event occur during my lifetime. Perhaps, my children will live to see this but only if they themselves are lucky. I am 43 years old and the only events I can accurately place my whereabouts are 1). The shuttle Challenger explosion 2). The 2001 Twin Tower World Trade Center terrorist attack and 3). The 44th President of the United States Barack Hussien Obama winning the election.

I am writing this article as a memory jogger for everyone as to where you were when the world as we knew it changed in a way we may never fully know. I remember sitting with my family staring at the “telly” thinking this was all a dream. It felt like time stood still! Remember the masses of people of all ages, creeds, color and races all huddled around in the cold Chicago wind? I can see all those people with the look of amazement on their faces and tears in their eyes. On that day I wept for my ancestors. I made sure all my kids where in the room with us just to be able to one day tell their kids they saw it happen. I called my mother and grandmother to get their perspectives on the moment. Imagine a woman born in 1919 now being made aware that a black man would be the most powerful man in the world! I also remember thinking “oh my God please don’t let a madman come from nowhere and kill my President!

I want to hear your stories. Where were you? What sticks out in your mind about that night? Let’s hear your voices by taking the time to leave your comments! Enjoy yourself while you relive the moments. One day reporters will ask us in the twilight of our lives….where were you when Obama changed the world?!

Friday, May 14, 2010

The Question is...

Almost 16 months into our 44th President’s term in office and much has changed. Gone are the pretenses that an African American cannot and will not be President! This America and the World are a much different place. Does this make the “Black Man” Free? Do we now have an equal share of the American Pie? Are we past the need for affirmative action?

This blog will do it’s best to address some tough questions about the state of the black man in American circa 2010. You will hear the voices of the “Black Man” from coast to coast and of all ages! From Baby Boomers to Generation Y. I will be your moderator through this year's journey into finding out the state of the “Black Man” in America…at least in the minds of Black Men! Are we holding ourselves back, feeling the chains of oppression that might not be there anymore or are we just down right lazy and full of it!? I wish to explore political issues as well as social inadequacies. Lend your voices as we discuss how to become Nuevo Riche in 2010. So, sit back and kick your feet up, cause, it’s going to be one helluva ride!!!

Milano Flascucci