Saturday, January 31, 2009

Feb. 1st-Black History Month Tribute

Tomorrow marks the beginning of Black History Month. To me this is one of the most important holidays our country celebrates (or doesn't celebrate). I have always felt that instituting Black History Month was one of the most important decisions in American political history. So in honor of Black History Month, I will be posting a poem by a black poet on my blog for every day in February. I was going to try to do facts, but I think poetry can give a more in-depth look into the history of Blacks in America, and I like poetry a lot. I will try to keep the formatting as original as Blogger will let me but hopefully the words will make impact despite this medium's shortcomings.

I will continue posting about politics, college, social media, etc. through out February but as we are nearing the end of Winter quarter here at Ohio Northern, I might do only poetry towards the end of the month.

I hope you enjoy the poems and I hope you learn more about your country during Black History Month 2009!!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Why I like and tweet Top Chef

Top Chef for me has been insight into a world I didn't have the courage enough to pursue entry to on my own. There I said it. I was scared. I was scared I wouldn't be good enough. That was the summer before senior year of high school, when I switched my career hopes from Executive Chef of my own restaurant, to Music Director of my high school. If only I knew then that the desire would never fade. And that in college I would gain the strength of character needed to succeed in any field, especially cooking.

I have always loved cooking, and have sorta always been good at it a bit. It started out like it does with most people, make some good pancakes and your fam thinks you're a food prodigy and keeps asking for more lol. But since I thought my future was more secure in music education(?), I only applied to one culinary school and everywhere else was music focused. I actually got in to Johnson & Wales, NC but I decided that was good enough for me and put it in the back of my mind. Now, four years and a major switch later, I watch Top Chef to see people do what I still long to. I have actually been contemplating going back to school for a culinary education after undergrad, and working in PR or freelance writing while I do. But in the end, I have a strong feeling I will again go the "secure" route and continue my trek to law school. Its not that I don't want to do it, but in my heart of hearts I think I love doing it because I'm not a professional. Who knows though, I might just forego my security and follow my heart, but I doubt it.

oh and I tweet along with Top Chef because looking at the comments on afterwards is hilarious!!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

New Beginnings!!

OK so really only the first three minutes of this clip is relevant to what I'm talking about.

It is my wish for us all that President Obama turns out to be everything and more than we so blindly venerate him to be. Don't get me wrong, I am happy we have someone else in the Highest Office, if not for the simple fact that I can pretty much guarantee better State of the Union Addresses for the next four years (although Bush's last one was dope...focus). I, as a moderate, just strongly feel that we should take this Inauguration day and remember why we elected him in the first place.

Please, everyone, remember what President Obama is here to do, remember what we were promised, remember that in order for our country to march together smoothly (had to tie in the clip somehow lol), we've got to hold our leadership accountable. If he messes up, we can't be to rosey-eyed with Mr. President to make him polish some drums (score!). I see a lot of people who are just like the principal or whatever they call the principal in college (provost?? Dean?? wtv) running around shouting "NEW BEGINNINGS!!!!" or better yet "YES WE DID!!!" without knowing the behind the scenes detail about why they are excited.
But alas, I'm done being a skeptic. Happy Inauguration DAY!! New Begi...nah ;)

A quote from A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the White House

On this auspicious day the sky is blue, the birds sing, and joy is unconfined. It is the last day of the Cleveland [read Bush] Administration

Monday, January 19, 2009

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day and Black OURstory Month

DISCLAIMER: I originally wrote this article in the Northern Review, for the week of January 14, 2008. I added "Martin Luther King Day" in some places to add to or replace "Black History Month" because I feel the sentiment expressed is easily applicable to MLK Day as well as Black History Month. Other than that, this was a pretty much copy and paste job. The poem at the bottom is Nikki Giovanni, 4-6-68.

That time of year is right around the corner. You know what I mean, the time after all the holidays are over when celebrating anything is the last thing on your mind? Perfect timing for one of the most necessary yet abrasive celebrations in the U.S. I’m speaking of Martin Luther King Day and Black History Month.

The reason I would use a word like “abrasive” when describing Martin Luther King Day, is because as a maturing black man I realize that not everyone gets the same feeling of tradition and history from it that I do. I love learning about Dr. King, my people and where we’ve come from, just as all cultures treasure their history.

I know a lot of times, white kids aren’t constantly aware of their interest in learning about their history, and I suspect its because of being constantly surrounded by their history. I mean look around, watch the news, stats are always coming up about things that have happened in the past relating to current times, that have white people as the subjects. It’s part of the benefits of being the majority.

Let me pause here with a disclaimer that this is not a “Black Man’s Plight” rant. I’m not that kind of dude. From talking with friends of mine who happen to be white and simply from living life around white people and watching, actively, I have come to realize that there is somewhat of an aversion or apathy towards Black History Month, or at the least uneasiness about their role in it. Actually I have seen this sentiment with a lot of people who aren’t black or who haven’t lived around black American culture for any lengthy period of time.

This is understandable; I mean honestly who wants to be told that their ancestors were treacherous slavers who disregarded the universal humanity of an entire continent Not me! But people of the Caucasian persuasion should realize that not everything is about them. I mean it is, but it isn’t.

Martin Luther King Day and Black History Month are not times for black people to hate on white people and what they have done or continue to do. No, instead it is a time of education, a time for both black and white people to look on the past with the future in mind, to learn from mistakes made and to gain insight into the minds of the people of the time.

I learn so much from history, especially from the history of my people. It’s not just about Dr. King, not to take anything from him, but there are so many unique and intriguing stories of black people, like Dr. Hiram Revels, the first black U.S. Senator and by default, the first black U.S. Congressman. There was also Nat “Sweetwater” Clifton, the first contracted black NBA player. These people contributed in their own ways to the freedoms others may take for granted today, and in doing so, demonstrated the courage and strength that was necessary to achieve what they did.

Taking the time out to learn about these stories is what makes Martin Luther King Day such an awe-inspiring time. So if not active apathy, what should a white person or any knowledge-seeking individual for that matter, do during Martin Luther King Day? I know I have friends who aren’t black who don’t know what to do during this month, so they pretty much stay in their rooms. Don’t do that! No one is asking for an apology from you for something you didn’t do, but if you would like to show your black friends that you care, attend one of the events held on campus. Make an effort to learn something that might not be in your major or normal area of interest. Show your support by simply showing your face. This is not meant to be accusatory, but instead I am imploring you to actively embrace opportunities for your enlightenment. You can’t possibly know how much it really matters.

"The Funeral of Martin Luther King, Jr."
His headstone said
But death is a slave's freedom
We seek the freedom of free men
And the construction of a world
Where Martin Luther King could have lived and
preached non-violence

Happy Martin Luther King Day!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Power of Twitter

Yesterday, I posted about Cheryl Harrison's caffiene addiction. This post was the result of a conversation I was having with her on twitter at the time. Thanks to tweetree, I can show you chronologically how it played out:

erob1 (erob1) Jan 05, 02:00 PM I don't know how anyone gets addicted to coffee. I just had a toffee nut cappuccino and my mouth tastes terrible!! ugh

JamienneScott (JamienneScott) Jan 05, 02:47 PM @erob1 try some caramel macchiatos or caramel coconut lattes or white choc/banana/orange/rum Those are where the deliciousness is at

erob1 (erob1) Jan 05, 02:50 PM
@JamienneScott Will do! I still don't think I'll like them enough to get addicted like @CherylHarrison

Cheryl Harrison (CherylHarrison) Jan 05, 02:52 PM
@erob1 Hey don't talk about my caffeine addiction on Twitter!

erob1 (erob1) Jan 05, 02:54 PM @CherylHarrison lol where should I talk about it? ???

erob1 (erob1) Jan 05, 03:01 PM
@CherylHarrison's addicted to Caffeine, read about it here:

Cheryl Harrison (CherylHarrison) Jan 05, 03:02 PM I'm a big deal: @erob1 wrote a blog about me - ok so maybe he's just calling me an addict but all press is good press LOL

Now on twitter, @CherylHarrison is pretty much the Tweet Princess of Columbus and when she posts about a blog, her 1,543 followers get instantaneously informed. With my 116 followers, that's a combined total of 1,659 people who all can follow our conversation and potentially add their own insight. So you see, in a matter of minutes this conversation turned from me being disgusted with horrible coffee, to exposure for my blog to over 1,600 twitterers, some of whom are PR Professionals, Marketers and Social Media Experts!! Imagine if we were discussing something important?!

Some other examples of Twitter Power:
Twitter and Celebs
Twitter and Phishing
Twitter and Mumbai
Twitter and Motrin Moms
Twitter and the Election
Twitter, Kanye and Stephen Colbert
Twitter In the News

Monday, January 5, 2009

Addicted to Caffeine

Cheryl Harrison is addicted to caffeine. I think this is an issue mainly because coffee tends to be disgusting. And her primary source of caffeine is coffee. Were she a tea drinker, I don't think I would take such a stance because tea is delicious and nutritious. Amen

Sunday, January 4, 2009

iPhone 3G=Unlocked, Dev=Unlucky

Yo I don't usually post at this time of night because most of the blogs I follow post in the morning and I think that's a great way to do it, fresh thoughts for the day and what not. But on the way home from picking my big Sis up from work, I heard on the radio about Dev, the team who hacked the iPhone 3G. Apparently they've been having some trouble with a Jody Sanders, who has been selling their freeware(modified) to unlock the iPhones for profit.

I'm gonna guess that Dev is just going to have to take a hit on this one, unless they can sufficiently prove that Jody stole something they had patented, which they can't. Dev is basically the new NetZero, giving away for free what people are ready and willing to pay for. Although it is really altruistic to distribute software like unlocking applications for free so that the world can use iPhones and not just AT&T customers, it is also currently illegal, because of licensing contracts Apple has with AT&T. And although they probably will not be prosecuted, they also aren't making any money off something that probably took hundreds of hours to do. Dev should get smart and take down yellowsnOw until they can get a patent or something so they can sell it at a price they think is fair for consumers. It is only a matter of time before Apple and AT&T's contract runs out and with all the problems Apple has had with AT&T's infrastructure and service, I doubt they will be renewing it when they can exponentially increase iPhone sales by selling them unlocked.

This coming from the guy who doesn't even have a cell phone :)

Thursday, January 1, 2009


2009 is finally here!...well I mean like 6 hours ago lol. I am really looking forward to all that God has in store for me with this one, because 2008 was dope! I think one of the things I learned that has stuck with me the most over this past year is the importance of being yourself. I have always struggled with this a bit because I have this weird ability where I can assimilate into any group I'm around. Like still be me, I mean personality wise, but like I know or easily discover cultural mores and habits, I pick up accents easily, little things like that that put other people at ease around me. And I do this without thinking, as my girlfriend (new as of October 08!) describes it, it's like a light switch. I can flick it on when I need to, off when I don't. But I've learned that sometimes I'll get so caught up in my flicking that switch off and on and on and off, I forget who's behind the switch in the first place! I've always been one to hang with like almost every kind of person,that's just who I am. I get along with some of everybody, and can usually handle confrontations discreetly while remaining in good rapport with those I may happen to disagree with. In college, I have friends who drink, don't drink, smoke, don't smoke, exercise everyday, or are couch potatoes etc. Being around all these different kinds of people adds depth to my experiences, because I recognize different points of view even within as small a population as Ada.

I guess what I'm getting at is, I usually do not make New Year's resolution because I think they are a waste of energy and they are cliche, but this year I am resolving to BE MYSELF. I'm 21. I know what I like, and what I don't like. Granted there are still tons of new things out there for me to experience but I am no longer simple conforming to any old thing. I'm better than that, and I know better than that.I can be and normally am a fairly stubborn person, and I'm planning on putting that stubborness into full effect. I am no longer going to allow myself to be peer pressured. I don't exactly know what I want out of life but I do know what I don't want. So goodbye 2008, hello 2009, old things are passed away yo! All things are new!

...I might need to get some new shoes too :)