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            Thursday, January 31, 2008

            Leaving Minnesota









            Wednesday, January 30, 2008

            Kwame Kilpatrick Needs To Step Down (and go to the Free Clinic)

            . He delivers the kind of blunt, fact-filled political analysis I wanna slang one day when I grow up.

            So while my favorite topic is off limits, my next favorite topic, talkin' reckless about general examples of Extreme Niggadom is not. And now meet Exhibit A: Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick.

            Just last week, I bought you the story of our sullied hip-hop mayor, who

            Pandering and Patronizing? No Thanks, I'd Rather Just Be Ignored.

            [Editor's Note: This isn't technically politricks, just a post about something that really irks me with some appropriate contextual examples. The moratorium's still on.]

            First, some definitions to set the table.

            Pander: Accommodating special interests without any principles, for instance, a politician who says to whatever group that he/she is addressing what they want to hear to win their support, contributions or favors.

            Patronize: To treat condescendingly.


            Now, watch this bullsh*t.



            Seriously, who the heck says "Who Let The Dogs Out?" "Bling! Bling?" It's 2008, not 98'. Doesn't this cat have some semi-young staffers who could have helped him update his slang? Does he spend any time around people of color? Who told him this was hip? Why does he need to be "down"?

            He coulda just holla'd "Ay! Bay! Bay!" or "Woooooooowwww!!!" and kept it movin'. Instead, he only looks more like the pompous, out-of-touch, unlikeable jackass he truly is.

            Just in case you were wondering what Mitt Romney was doing around all these young Negroes anyway, it was MLK Day, so technically, he sorta kinda had to do it. You know, since his Dad marched with Dr. King and whatnot, I guess this is his way of paying homage.

            Pandering/Patronizing is borderline condescension. It's a nice way of saying I want to get something from you, without bothering to know enough about you to engage you in a respectful manner. The Clintons practically wrote the modern-day book on this. Watch Hillary C.H.I.N. morph into Shirley Caesar last year in Selma, AL.



            Last time I checked, that wasn't exactly a Chicago accent. Then again, all these preachers are paid consultants anyway (just Google the term "street money"), so at least somebody's getting something out of this whole charade.

            For real, for real tho', if you don't have nothin' nice to say to me, just don't say jack. I'd rather be ignored than marginalized. At least my intelligence wouldn't be insulted. I'm just sensitive like that. Call me AB Tresvant.

            Since we're on the topic of patronizing/pandering, I thought I'd throw this one out at ya'll. I'm still here in Minneapolis (Temperature? Negative 13. Wind chill? Negative 38. My face? I can't feel my face.), and still working with the same group of folks I've been with for months now, including Mr. C.Y.I.N. himself, whom I've got firmly in check now. Needless to say, as the only dark spot in the whole crew, I'm always a little on edge when people's conversations start veering beyond basic workplace chatter. There were some carefully worded jabs at the Obama SC victory yesterday. Semi-edgy pre-Superbowl discussion about ex-Viking Randy Moss. Something about Jessica Alba's black(ish) baby daddy. I pretty much stay focused and let this stuff go in one ear and out the other, but today, two of the young female analysts I'm working with had an inside joke moment, of which I was the butt. And I don't like being the butt. [||]

            One of the chicks (they're sitting side by side) asks me if it's okay to start running a program on her machine. I concur. She acknowledges me by asking again.

            "AB, I'm going to run this program. Are you 'down wit' that'?" {stated with "you go girl" type voice inflection}

            I normally wouldn't think too much about this, I know that jive talk is a typical white dude's defense mechanism when he either feels uncomfortable or threatened by his environment and wants to lighten the mood. Been there, heard that. But what made this a little different is how the two chicks started lightly giggling (and bumping elbows) after the first one made the 'down wit' that' statement. It was like the embodiment of some sorta ladies-room giggly jibberjabber.

            Again, I felt like the butt of a joke I'd never get the punchline to. And while it's more annoying than anything else, it makes me wonder just how often this kinda stuff happens to other folks.

            Question: How often do you get "jive talked" and pandered to? How does it generally make you feel? How do you usually react?

            Tuesday, January 29, 2008

            Paying for Grades: Outside The Box Thinking or Hidden Racism?

            , seem to back up this assertion. Point blank: kids have to want it for themselves.

            As much as I admire NYC's "outside the box" thinking, part of me says this will work in the short term, yet a few years from now, lots of the other school systems nationwide copying this approach will probably regret opening this door in the first place. And the reason is simple: external motivation (in this case financial) is good for some things, but encouraging a desire to learn is not one of them. At least not in any lasting fashion.

            This may (or may emphatically not) surprise some of you, but AverageBro was an extremely AverageStudent in grade school. I was diagnosed as one of those "gifted and talented" students early on, and thrust into a post-Antebellum South environment of "the only black in the class" from primary school forward. Somewhere around the 9th grade or so, I got tired of being "the only smart black guy in school" and got infected with a Grade A Case of Nigganosis. In short, I just plain stopped trying, dumbed myself down to fit in with the rest of my peers, and did just enough to get by for the next four years. Without exerting much effort, I was still a solid B+ student even though I seldom even bothered bringing books 北京体彩网官方网站. I never pushed myself to take AP courses. I always did the bare minimum. I still ended up finishing in the Top 10% in my graduating class, which got me a full ride to study engineering at my Negro College HBCU. Needless to say, I thought college would be a breeze, but old habits of laziness and general slackerdom are hard to break. After only three semesters, I had already blown the scholarship and was on academic probation.

            Faced with the crisis of coming back 北京体彩网官方网站 and working menial jobs for the rest of my life, I heeded my old man's advice (he wasn't paying for anything beyond one more semester), buckled down, turned my act around and graduated on time with honors and nine job offers. What was the difference? How was AB able to go from ashy to classy? It's very simple: I finally wanted to learn.

            Yes, getting internships, ensuring my future, showing my Dad I could hold my own, etc. were all important, but what was most crucial was a need to prove to myself that I could do better. That I wasn't a dummy. That it was in fact, okay to be smart because, duh, what the heck else are you going to college for? The financial carrot (scholarship and stipend) wasn't enough to make this happen. My Dad's constant "you better plan on getting a job if you fail out, cause you ain't movin' back here"'s didn't do it. Only I could make that decision. And I think that's where the NYC plan will fall short.

            If there's one thing I've learned in my brief time at AverageMentee's school, it's that school systems spend too darn much time on structured lessons preparing kids to pass standardized tests, and don't give teachers nearly enough time, resources, and latitude to be creative and find ways of encouraging kids to gain a desire, heck, a lust to want to learn. Not to learn to pass a test. Not to learn to get $100 for each A. Just to learn, just because. Parents, obviously, could do a lot to encourage this desire to learn in every kid from Day One, but then again, there's no Standardized Test for Parenting. Maybe there should be.

            So, while I think that's happening in the Big Apple and in school systems nationwide is a novel concept, the eternal pessimist in me just don't see it having a lasting, longterm effect. What do ya'll think?

            Question: Do you think New York City's pay for grades program is a lasting motivator for kids? If you're a parent of a school aged kid yourself, how do you recommend developing a "desire to learn"?



            More "You Must Learn" Posts From AB.com:
            No Wonder Our Schools Are So Bad. [Oct 07']
            Why Tyrone Can't Learn... The Achievement Gap [May 07']

            Monday, January 28, 2008

            AverageBro Makes The Big Leagues

            , hosted by the brilliant Farai Chideya. The show has a regular segment called Blogger's Roundtable, which is more or less a black version of The McLaughlin Report, using various personalities from across the blogosphere. I am thrilled, and furthermore honored to be a part of this feature, and will make my debut in a few weeks.

            Those of you who think NPR is just that station on the far end of the dial where everyone speaks in a library voice will probably be surprised by the show. Since Tavis Smiley was brought over to add a little color to the station a few years back, their programming has become far more diverse and dynamic. And now, your boy is headed over there to shake things up even more.

            Step One in the AverageBro Master Plan for Media Domination is underway. Keep it locked.

            The Politricks of Dreaming

            [Editor's Note: Friday, I promised a moratorium on Politricks as Usual. Don't be fooled, this ain't a post about politricks. And I also know this isn't my best writing, so lay off me. And no, that's not my son. I also don't recommend Googling the term "black boy" if you need a stock photo. Bad move. Awww, just read the post already.]

            Tonight, my son and I took a break from our Tivo sponsored Little Bill marathon to peek at some of the concession speeches on CNN. I purposely didn't pay much attention to the coverage of returns to that point. Like I said, whole process is beginning to get too dirty, and too draining. I needed a break. My wife called upstairs and told me Obama had been deemed the winner early, which was enough for me.

            Later, as my son lay there on my chest and we both watched what could very well have been the best speech of any sort that I ever experienced in real time, a thought hit me like a lightning bolt.

            This could really happen.

            I'm not necessarily talking about a Black man becoming President. It's about that of course, but so much bigger. I'm thinking more about black parents being able to tell their kids they can be anything they want to be, and actually mean it.

            My Dad told me I could be anything I wanted to be when I was a kid, but I could look in his eyes and tell he didn't really mean it. He knew there was one thing I could never be. President.

            It's not that he didn't have faith in his youngest son and namesake. It was more so a lack of faith in our country北京体彩网官方网站, a disbelief that a child who looked like me could ever be accepted by enough of America on his own merit, an America that didn't see his skin color as a detriment. Even when Jesse Jackson had his impressive runs in the mid-80's, there was still the nagging realization that he was mostly succeeding on a platform that spoke to and for blacks. This was great of course, but was never going to gonna get him elected. Not in a million years.

            The Presidency is that "final frontier" of black achievement. We've run Fortune 500 companies. We've become billionaires. We've gone to the moon. But the Presidency is different, it's unique in it's prominence and power, and it's has to be granted, not merely earned by "working twice as hard".

            All other reasons of merit, qualifications, and experience aside, I finally realized tonight what truly makes the Obama campaign special.

            The ability to dream.

            As my son and I chewed crushed ice and watched the Obama speech, I finally allowed my cynicism to melt. Hell, I won't even lie, I actually teared up just a little bit, but don't tell nobody. But seriously, who's to say a black man can't be the catalyst for making America the best country北京体彩网官方网站 it can really be? Who's to say Blacks, Whites, Latinos, and Asians can't all get just along? Who's to say my son can't be President? Certainly not me. Now I can look him in his eyes, say it, and really, truly mean it.

            It could really happen.

            [Question: Did watching that acceptance speech Saturday night actually make you more hopeful for the future of our country北京体彩网官方网站? Just in case you ain't peeped it yet, here it is.]

            Hiring A Hitman On Craigslist? What A Dummy!

            Friday, January 25, 2008

            Thursday, January 24, 2008

            Newsflash! Averagebro's Identity Revealed... And He's A White Dude!


            That's right folks, I'm a white dude.

            Some of you were wondering if this was indeed the case all along, and you were correct. How else could you possibly explain the way I mercilessly "find a successful black person... tear them down ... make fun of how people speak... make fun of their spelling" as some random Anonymous commenters frequently opine? How else could you explain the relative lack of rhythm (I still can't do the New Electric Slide)? The relative lack of brand consciousness? The ebonics-free posts? The oh-so-blatant self hatred? The constant and annoying shilling of sweatshop manufactured goods available at the AB.com Store? Besides, black dudes don't even refer to each other as "Bro". That's a white guy thang, ya'll wouldn't understand.

            We all know these things are synonymous with being white, so if you by proxy deduced that I was white, you were correct all along. Congrats, I've been outed. Break out the Capri Suns!

            Since we're on the topic, why is it that the AverageCommenters who drop such BS as what I quoted above always sign their posts as Anonymous?

            Things that make you say "hmmmmm" indeed.

            I know I shouldn't let this kinda mess bother me, especially when the folks who spout such BS always insist on posting their comments as Anonymous. It's obviously the pot calling the kettle black (no pun intended again) to pick at these folks since I'm an anonymous blogger myself, but it's still somewhat cowardly to toss such mindless grenades without even creating a Blogger profile first. Am I right, or am I right?

            When I started this blog, the aim was to encourage critical thought on issues of relevance to "you people". Part of this means pointing out foul behavior where it resides, whether the offending party is black (like most of my readers) or white (like me). I try and keep it nice and even, but reality is, I cater to the whims of my readers, and more times than not, this means putting Negroes on blast. Sometimes I miss the mark, but judging by the comments (and the steadily rising number of daily hits) here, I seem to hit it pretty often. However, since I've been outed as a white dude and my cover is blown, I clearly can no longer continue masquerading as AverageBro. Stayed tuned for AverageWhiteDude.com, coming soon.

            Question: Seriously, when did critical thought and examination of black folks issues become self-hatred?

            [Editor's Note: This is obviously satire, and poorly worded satire at that. AB.com is black as a country北京体彩网官方网站 midnight, and ain't goin' nowhere. But after another 13-hour (and still counting) day slaving at the Day Job (yep, same customer as C.Y.I.N. post), I damn near blew my gasket [||] when I read that ignorant assed comment. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, peep the Starbury post comments from yesterday and put that misguided bama on blast. Point being: if you don't like what I'm writing here, close your browser and go read a book, have a Coke and a smile, and you know the rest.]

            Would Somebody Please Shut This Honorary Negro Up!?!?





            Wednesday, January 23, 2008

            Tuesday, January 22, 2008

            Bill Clinton Has A Dream... ZZzzzzzzz...

            C.Y.I.N. Case Study: Barack Obama (Finally) Grows Some Testicles



            Monday, January 21, 2008

            CYIN Case Study: Tiger Woods Should Be Offended By Now

            with PGA pioneers Lee Elder and Charlie Sifford a decade ago when Woods loudly proclaimed "I won't forget... I will never forget"?

            Selective amnesia is a mutha.

            Question: Should Tiger Woods be offended and C.H.I.N. this time?

            Friday, January 18, 2008

            .

            But when encountered with such an attack in a professional setting in which you need the keep billing and collecting, you can't afford a Nigga Moment, unless you have other ways of paying your mortgage. Whoopin' somebody's ass on G.P. is a noble concept, but AverageToddler can't eat G.P. Countrywide doesn't accept G.P. Pepco won't give me lights and heat on G.P. They want general principal, not general principle. And needless to say, you guys aren't buying nearly enough of those for me give 2 weeks notice and an accompanying two finger salute just yet (evar?). A million thanks for having my back on that one.

            So, I was faced with The Ultimate Corporate Negro Dilemma: Suck it up and keep cashin' checks, or C.Y.I.N. and probably lost my job at least, and maybe catch a case at worst?

            I won't bother telling you guys which route I chose, primarily because I'd like to know how you would have handled such a situation, have handled such a situation, or will handle such a situation if presented with the same set if circumstances. Trusty AverageCommenters Ginger, Carmen D, and EBW have weighted in already, but I'd like to hear from the rest of ya'll.

            Question: Is it EVER okay to C.Y.I.N. in a corporate environment to put a mutha******* in check, or is that an instant trip to the unemployment line?

            Weigh in early and often you-know-where.

            For those of you who have no idea what the heck we're talking about, here's a dramatization of what can happen when you C.Y.I.N. in an inappropriate setting. You might know this as Dave Chappelle's When Keepin' It Real Goes Wrong. I know it as Maybe AB Shoulda Whooped Somebody Ass.

            Oggling Venus' Booty: Sexist Or Just Plain Creepy?

            Thursday, January 17, 2008

            AverageBro Rewind: In Case You Missed It

            cause I just might really, really, really need the money very soon.

            With no further adieu, The AverageBro Rewind.

            Channelling Your Inner Nigga™ - My magnum opus of bloggdom, a masterpiece which came waay too far ahead of this blog's popularity curve, and still has a puzzling, big fat ZERO comments. Go read this, and for the love of all things precious, leave a comment.

            The AverageBro Broken English Hall of Shame - AB's list of not-quite-slang, but far from King's English terms he'd love to see disappear.

            AverageBro Is A SellOut - Did you know AB.com has it's own store chock full of cool stuff you can buy to support a Jamba Juice and iTunes habit the starvin' chill'rens in A-ka-fra? Buy some stuff and make the world a better place. If things on the Day Job keep up at this rate, AB just might need to proceeds to pay his mortgage.

            Take The AverageBro Challenge™ - Real talk. Read it, and do something.

            Enough Is Enough Better Stay Off Debra Lee's Petunias - The often imitated, yet seldom duplicated BET post that sparked a million internet copycats and swagger jacks.

            'Could Mr. Right Be White?' - The AP's Assault on Black Marriage - Because mindless chatter about interracial dating is always Blogger Gold™, and because the article's author ripped me a new one somewhere in the comments. Also, my first AB CyberStalker staked her claim here. I'm pretty sure this isn't the same person as the AP reporter, so let's just say I touched a nerve or six with this one.
            Enjoy the show, folks. And pray for focus, steadfastness, and a stable Oracle database for your boy. I need every break I can cop between now and Friday.

            Tuesday, January 15, 2008

            The Stepha Henry Case Takes A Turn For The Worse

            , nobody cares. There is no Laquita Alert.

            What is true is that none of that matters right now.

            A life is quite possibly lost, and though I don't know anything about Ms. Henry other than

            Every Hero Needs Theme Music. Cue That Jay-Z, Son!

            as their official campaign theme song? Except for the "Elvis was a hero to most" line, which might be somewhat offensive to some folks, this song is perfect.

            Here's the song in question, just in case you live under a rock. Be forewarned, cop them headphones first unless you want your cubemates to call for security. Not safe for work language ahead.



            Since we're talkin' about hip hop, maybe someone needs to teach Obama some moves while we're at it. Dude has zero rhythm. He makes me look like Chris Brown by comparison.



            This bama is gonna mess up the Lectric' Slide at his inaugural ball.

            Question: Is Obama channeling Jay-Z as underhandedly offensive as Clinton's cronies dropping those dopeman subliminals? Some cable talking heads have suggested as much. You tell me.



            * Cyber props to the first person who can tell me what movie this quote is from.

            The Death Of The Black Comedy

            [I'm taking a momentary pause of Politricks and B.S. For the newbies, don't worry, I'll be back on that tip soon enough.]

            We all know TV sucks, but damn, whatever happened to the cinematic gimmie of Black Comedy? Sometimes you just need to laugh to keep from crying, especially when you're 1000's of miles away from 北京体彩网官方网站, billing 14 hour days for a d-bag customer, in a desolate city of Arctic level temperatures, staying in a 3rd rate hotel down by the river, with no end in sight. Or maybe that's just me.

            But seriously, look at these trailers and tell me you'd drop $40 of your gross household income on such Extreme Coonery.

            First Sunday



            Roscoe Jenkins



            And here's a few from last year.

            The Perfect Holiday



            Who's Your Caddy?



            Seriously, WTF!?!?

            Movies like this make me wistful for Pootie Tang.

            Whatever happened to good black comedies like Carwash? Which Way Is Up? 48 Hours? Hollywood Shuffle? And of course my personal favorite...



            20+ years later, and that movie is still comedic gold.

            Yep, it's official. I'm gettin' old.

            Question: Am I being too hard on these movies? Are you planning on going to see First Sunday?

            If I'm stuck in the Twin Cities in subzero temps (seriously, it was 1 degree this morning. 1.) again next week, I just might be tempted to see First Sunday if for no other reason than to detox after dealing with this customer all day. I guess it beats suffering through another game of Exciting Timberwolves Basketball. Does this make AB a hypocritical coon'? Do I need to issue myself an honorary "kill thyself" for even entertaining the thought?

            A Freakin' 150 INCH PLASMA TEEVEE!!!

            , thanks to the writer's strike. I haven't seen a new episode of 30 Rock since way back in 07'. Watching TV nowadays is about as depressing as listening to a Mary J. Blige interview*. Thank God for library cards.

            Note to Hollyweird: Work it out already.

            Still, tell me you don't look at the photo above and find yourself somewhat excited [||] (or maybe a little tingly for the ladies).

            Yes folks, it's a freakin' 150 INCH PLASMA TEEVEE!!! (caps intentionally added for emphasis. look at that friggin' thing, it's bigger than the woman!)

            Panasonic President Toshihiro Sakamoto kicked off the first official day of the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas with a slew of announcements, including a 150-inch plasma TV.

            The 150-inch plasma, dubbed "Life Screen," is now the largest in the world. It boasts 2,000-by-4,000 pixel resolution and is 11 feet wide, or the size of nine 50-inch plasma TVs, Sakamoto said.

            "It's capable of an amazing picture that is four times the resolution of our current full HD plasma displays," Sakamoto said. "It gives new meaning to the words reality TV."

            He did not announce any pricing information, though the 103-inch plasma retails for $70,000, and reports have put the 150-inch version in the $100,000 range.

            The massive TV was "designed especially for digital cinema and commercial installations, but might also be found in some very luxurious special 北京体彩网官方网站s in the future.
            Hot damn! For merely the price of a rural 北京体彩网官方网站 (somewhere in the South, $100k won't buy you a 0 Bedroom 0 Bath 北京体彩网官方网站 in DC) you can have the fight party of all fight parties (never mind the fact that boxing sucks too).

            Size matters, folks. [||] Imagine watching The Wire in HD on that bad boy. Imagine playing Madden or NBA2k on the PS3. Lifesized Yo! Gabba Gabba! Nonstop Lifetime Movie Network Hardcore Action and Sci-Fi flicks. NBA League Pass.

            Yes, I just hyperventilated.

            I would probably quit my Day Job and just lay at 北京体彩网官方网站 in my draws watching Judge Joe, Maury, and Judge Mathis all day. My wife and kid would probably leave me, but goshdarnit, that's a freakin' 150 INCH PLASMA TEEVEE!!! Wooo hoooo!!!

            Damn a 401k, the heck with retirement, I'm saving up for that right now.

            I should have enough to afford it by 2027 or so. And considering my

            [Editor's Notes: * No, seriously. and tell me if you're not instantly bummed out. ** This is a joke. Sorta. Kinda.]

            Monday, January 14, 2008

            Bob Johnson Should Be Beaten and Publicly Flogged