Posts filed under: ‘Estate Matters‘
Last spring while in Minneapolis I can’t feeling I was going to see Prince. I was going to see Prince… that’s all I would think anytime I was out and about during our church convention, which brought me to Minneapolis in the first place. But I never did.
While working as radio announcer I clearly remember when Prince first emerged upon the scene. He was touted then as he still is now… as a musical genius.
His first album… that’s how long ago that was. Many today have never heard of an album… and most have forgotten what they were. But on his first album Prince was the only musician. He played every instrument used in the recording of that album.
The man was brilliant at his craft and as a business man too. He was a rough negotiator who fought the record company and won… to maintain musical freedom and the rights to all his work. He was definitely not a dumbie.
I had wondered how old he was after I hear the news late yesterday evening of his passing. And I thought about Michael and Whitney… and how they had died in their 50’s… that’s when my son came in and voiced exactly what I had been thinking.
They all had died in their 50’s.
I read today that Prince was 57. Michael had just hit the bit five-‘o.’ And Whitney was in her early 50’s too I believe.
Three remarkable people musically… but dark around the edges. We are all familiar with Whitney and her battle with drugs and for happiness. And Michael’s peculiar ways… dipping and dapping into all kinds of things… and his involvement and fascination with little boy children.
Well, back in the day he was always seen with highly attractive young ladies… though he did admit in an interview to being bi-sexual. I have very deep opinions regarding people who proclaim themselves to be bi-sexual. It kind of goes in line with Biblical scripture… ‘either they will hate the 1 and love the other.’ Something is going to be more intriguing to them sexually over the other… and that is just the way it is.
In fact, I was surprise to find out that he had once married. During the early days he lived a fast life… though he always appeared to be shy and introverted… as Michael often attempted to appear as well. But I think more that a song writer Prince was a musician… and lived as 1.
Though he lived quietly and without much controversy through much of his musical career… except for moving from 1 woman friend to another… Prince managed to stay pretty much out of the limelight.
During his aging process Prince still looked pretty much the same. Though a friend told me this morning that he had had a hip replacement and a knee replacement. I guess that came from years of dropping to his knees while performing… playing his guitar and dancing like James Brown… who was 1 of Michael’s idols as well.
Well, if you are going to mimic someone… mimic the best. And James Brown was the best at what he did. Truly.
And though not well educated James… based upon his movie… was a screwed businessman. Which I guess Prince also learned to be.
In reading an article on the passing of Prince they alluded to the possibility of Prince having suffered a drug overdose. I seems to me every time a black person dies they want to tie it to drugs.
Maybe it’s true. Or maybe not. But 1 thing is for sure Prince was a decent person who gave back… and was not selfish enough to not open the door for other musicians and/or singer etc.
He refused to leave his beloved Minneapolis thereby forcing the record companies to come to him. And because he did acts like… Ready For the World… Time… Babyface and L.A. Reid… Terry Lewis and Jimmy Jam etc.. etc.. etc.. were introduced to the world.
That was a fete that not many black folk are known for… reaching back or opening the doors for others. But Prince did and there are a ton of people who can share their stories of how Prince aided them… or impacted their careers… or opened a door for them. And that truly is a great legacy.
In the end, however, there is the question of eternity. I hope as I had hoped for Michael and Whitney that Prince was able to resolved that with the Lord.
I have no doubt that Princes funeral will be filled with people whom we all know their names… there will be weeping… and fond memories… happy stories of being out on the road. Or maybe the family may chose to quietly bury him … just as he had lived.
Well, God bless… It’s Friday and I hope each of you have an enjoyable weekend.
Before closing I ran across pictures of Denise Matthews… better know as Prince’s girl, Vanity. Whom years later left the music scene and became a woman of God …while also battling A.I.D.S. Ironically, like Prince… Vanity passed as well but a few years ago… also at age 57.
Another 1 of Prince’s girl well known to us was Apollonia. She had been a former cheerleader of some major league team before hooking up with Prince. And she had won a beauty contest or 2.
Vanity often attributed her battle with A.I.D.E.S. to the life she had lived while running with Prince.
Though in life he wore platform heels to add to his short height… he sold lots of records and made lots of money. But in the end I hope his arms were not too short to box with Satan… to have ended up on the winning side.
Imagine in 3 short years Prince would have been 60. Wow…
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Add a comment April 22, 2016
What bothered me the most was that everyone seemingly is coming down on Bernice King, the youngest of Dr. Martin L. King, Jr.’s children, over this latest controversy in her family amongst her and her brothers.
Looking at the pictures it appears that Martin L. King, III has jumped ship. At one point it had been him and Bernice against Dexter King, their baby brother. Dexter and Martin 3 want to take out of the hands of Bernice their father’s traveling Bible, and what has to be any families most valued treasure if we could all get 1… Dr. King’s Nobel Peace Prize medal.
Who in their right mind would dare part with these 2 things?
There are just some things you simply cannot put a price tag on.
Perhaps, some down and out someone or other might think differently. Or just some plain greedy kids… out to liquidate everything they can get their grubby little hands on of their mother’s and father’s estate.
Is it not enough that the court ordered Bernice to surrender to Dexter personal cards and letters written to their mother by their father… items that Mrs. King had personal given to her youngest daughter?
Now, here comes Dexter again… and this time Martin 3 is with him. They are in the boat together to snatch out of their sister’s hands their father’s Bible (the Bible that President Barack Obama placed his hand upon when he took his oath for his 2nd term in the White House) and Dr. King’s Nobel Peace Prize.
How low can you go, Dexter and Martin 3?
Unless you have been there you will never understand how hard it is to stand when everyone around is grabbing for what they can get… and all you can think of ‘my parent’s are gone.’ Dealing with loss can be very difficult. And especially when the responsibility somehow falls upon you… be it a sense of duty or whatever… but you are the one who ends up trying to maintain what you see as what your parent’s desire would be.
And why should she?
We have all heard of down and out athletes and actors selling off their championship rings or Academy awards… when left with no other options. But this is something else. It is just pure and simple greed driving Dexter boy and his older and brother, Martin #3.
It is always very unfortunate when the value of your things winds up meaning more to your children than you… or what your desires would be… or the remembrance of you… or in this case have a higher cost than the King legacy and remembrance of their mother and father to some of them.
Bernice King has every right to try to hold onto the precious memories and legacy of both her mother and father, without having gifts which her mother gave to her… entrusted her with …being lost to a couple of greedy brothers who care nothing about the King legacy, or even how bad they are making their family and themselves looked by forcing the hand of their baby sister in this matter.
I heard an interview where Andrew Young, a man who I thought used to be a King family friend, commented on this matter by merely snickering at it and saying, “They sue too much.”
You know what Mr. Young?
When you have to take somebody to court ….or they want to take you to court. Baby, you better learn how to fight. Cause if you don’t learn how to swing back… then just crawl into a hole and pull some grass over you and die.
Thank goodness Bernice has not decided to die. When you honor your mother and father, and their memory… you don’t try to sell off precious things that belonged to them, because you cherish them. Those things were a part of them… and they should remain in the King family to get pass down. Many people today can’t even put their hands on old family pictures or 8mm films that may have been taken of them as children. Because somebody in their family grabbed them all up and years later discarded them… or they somehow got lost.
I long for a picture my mother had taken of me and my sister many years ago. We were just young children then. My sister took my parent’s picture and cut it up throwing away my half of that picture while keeping herself. Today not even that part exist. There had been other copies of that picture which my mother had sent to various relatives, but I have never been able to track not 1 down….or put my hands on them some 50 or more years later because they too were probably destroyed.
The problem in this story is one of greed. Dexter boy has been selling off everything… every piece of the King family estate he can since the passing of their mother… down to making the Federal government pay him for the use of his father’s image and likeness in the creation of his monument in Washington, D.C.. One would have thought that the honor and recognition given to his father in the creation of the Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. monument in D.C. would have filled him with joy. That he would have been eager for the King family to assist anyway it could. But no… not Dexter. He saw it as a money-making opportunity and milked the creation and erection of a monument to his father for every dime he could get out of it… including forcing them to pay for the use of any of Dr. King’s quotes.
Why anyone would want to throw stones at Bernice King for standing up to her brothers in their pursuit to sell off what has to be two of the most valued possessions of both their mother and father, Dr. King’s Bible and Nobel Peace Prize… is crazy. Clearly, those people do not know the whole story. But it has always been my experience to know that it is usually the good person… the person who is trying to do the right thing… the one who is innocent of trying to do wrong that gets blamed for starting the whole thing and is singled out as the culprit in the eyes of almost everyone looking in on matters like this. I have been there… and in many ways I still am. Trust me me I know.
So, yes… I side with Bernice King. I cheer you on Bernice King. Do not give up the fight. Fight the fight… it is well worth fighting. And I pray you God speed and victory in this matter. As there are some things you just do not sell off… like your birth right. And the right of any 3rd or 4th generation King’s etc. to not have to go to a library or museum to see an award presented to their grand-father or great great grand-father, because his kids sold off everything. Some things really are too sacred.
And I also pray for a changed mind and heart of both Dexter King and Martin #3.
In regards to Martin #3… I have no respect for him.
I recall going into court trying to fight for my father. I went in thinking that 2 of my other siblings were on my side. That is what they pretended… that is until we got before the Judge. When we got before the Judge they said nothing. They offered nothing not 1 agreement to anything to what I was saying. I was left out there all alone trying to fight for our father to be returned home, and they said nothing. I later came to realized that they never wanted daddy back home in the first place. The house was divided and everybody had grabbed what they wanted. My father’s house had been invaded and taken over… and daddy was forced out of his own property. A fact I never knew until some time after that court hearing.
It is amazing how quickly we can forget all the sacrifices and all the good times… and how much our parents poured into us. If Dr. King had not struggled… if he had not marched… if he not sacrificed his life… what would they have to fight over?
What would we all have to celebrate?
The car… the family house… everything that every family at the end is forced to fight over… I suspect they might have fought over that. Because there will always be at least 1 who sees a bigger picture than just self and… and thank God for that. They see more than what they can get out of the passing of supposed love ones. Always 1… and it appears that Bernice King is the 1. And yes… I stand with her.
On another note on the King family. Dexter has gotten married. This is really not new news. But I know it is not mentioned or talked about but if the truth be told… Dexter is really not the marrying kind. Everything for him is show. His wife is a supposed ex-lesbian. But I have known people who were gay who married with each 1 doing their own thing.
When I first encountered this it was a couple of the weirdest 2 people I had ever met. The guy was flamingly gay… and between them they did have a child. I really don’t know how she managed it?
But I figured out that they had been great friends and this is what laid the foundation for them agreeing to get together as husband and wife.
I also remember when once a lover of mine had been offered quite a considerable about of money from a man, who at the time was a boss of mine (he owned the radio station). His son was very very gay and the father wanted a grand child… an heir or something I guess. So, he proposed an offer to my girlfriend of this substantial amount of money to marry his 1 and only child, this gay son. And no she did not do it… as it was totally out of the question. But the point here is… is that there are some people who will do anything in order to have their gay children reform… get married… have children… even if it means they will not give them or leave them a dime unless they do. Then there are some people who get married for various other reasons… other than love. It’s called a ‘marriage or convenience.’
I must say though… that all this snow is beautiful.
If you are out there in the snow please remember safety rules. Drive with care and caution in the snow and ice. Apply brakes when riding on icy roadways lightly… come to a nice and easy stop by slowing up. Do not slam on your brakes… it will send your car sliding out of control.
Guess I’m moving a little bit too fast. I had all but forgotten about it being BLACK HISTORY MONTH. So, in celebration of Black History Month let me just quick tell you about a young lady in England. The youngest person to ever become a barrister (that is practicing lawyer in their terms). Her name is Gabrielle Turnquest. She is from the States, Florida to be exact… and she is just 18 years old. Amazing. To be young gifted and black… is definitely where it is at.
Happy BLACK HISTORY MONTH….
And let me not forget that this week Shirley Temple passed (Shirley Temple Black) at age 85. I cannot begin to tell you the countless Saturdays I spent watching Shirley Temple dance and sing her way down long stair steps… or try to cheer up a friend. She was more than just a favorite… Shirley was my friend.
Thank you for reading this blog…and my others. Please be sure to continue to share this blog site with your family, co-workers and all your friends… “pass it on…” www.bsmith101.wordpress.com ©2014
Add a comment February 15, 2014
We were in Coney Island when we came upon it… a gated community. We were kind of in awe of it… because it was kind of off by itself. We did not recognize immediately what it was that we were looking at… as it is just not the kind of thing you see in New York City. And certainly not out in Coney Island ever… least ways I had not.
But by this time Coney Island had been converted into, I guess you could say, some type of urban oasis. Gone were all the tall brick story housing complexes that used to line the skies in this section of Brooklyn, known to the world as Coney Island. The place looked totally different and it was hard to believe what had once been. I didn’t see the boardwalk or the amusement rides… none of it. It was as if somebody had taken a pencil and erased it… all.
Then that is when Mother and I spotted it, a group of houses surround by a brick wall. Up until this point… some time ago I had heard about gated communities but had never seen 1… or thought about it when I had seen them. Because who thinks of these kind of things… gated communities? I see such structures as just being more or less just a group of apartments or houses… or housing complexes… or new housing developments. But this place was fenced in with wires going all around… almost like a prison. The houses looked like that they had been shoved in and bunched up on top of each other… and that is what caught our attention.
The houses did not look like anything spectacular to me. None of them had any real land around them. Just a group of regular New York style non-distinct houses, of various kinds. Nothing big or fancy. Nothing that looked rizie… just plain common ordinary houses. Nothing to brag about. But they were fenced in by this brick wall that went all the way around it.
I remember saying to Mother, “Look Mother, a gated community.”
I was surprised to see it… and especially in New York City… and Mother was too. And even more especially in Coney Island… a place where nothing but public housing complexes used to stand, for as far as the eyes could see… but they were now all gone.
I can’t remember having seen 1 public housing complex that day in this section of Coney Island, that I used to visit often once upon a time.
Actually, they are not all certainly gone… at least ways not all of New York’s public housing… otherwise known as projects. But many have now been transformed. The old tenants moved or were forced out by the city of the developers, who had come in to possess this waterfront section of Brooklyn, known as Coney Island. And the buildings that those people all once used to live in have become condos and co-ops, which are very popular in New York City among those who can afford it. Or they were torn down totally. And that was what Mother Rochelle and I were looking at… an area where all the old housing complexes were totally gone.
But while writing my blog, THE ZIMMERMAN CASE WHAT A FARCE, I had heard in 1 of the YouTube videos that I put into that blog… how Zimmerman’s gated community had had a few recent robberies.
In 1 of those videos…. 1 of the homeowners, said to have been 1 of Zimmerman’s neighbor in the gated community… he commented on how a couple of the houses had recently been broken into and robbed. How Zimmerman had stopped robbers from breaking into his house. And he also stated this was the reason for why Zimmerman should have been on his guard for any suspicious characters in their neighborhood… being that Zimmerman was Captain of the neighborhood watch.
Since having heard that I have been thinking… Gated community… neighborhood watch?
Didn’t people move into gated communities for security?
Isn’t that the purpose for gated communities coming about?
Something was not working here. Either the police in Sanford were not doing their job. Or the gate… usually some type of high brick wall… wasn’t working either.
I would love to see the records regarding break-ins in Zimmerman’s neighborhood. And I would love to know exactly how long their neighborhood watch had been in effect?
Were these just a bunch of fearful people?
I mean who else would elect to live in a gated community… except for people who are fearful of the world around them.
The gate in gated communities is meant to keep out certain elements. These elements usually mean… the wrong kind of people… drugs and the woes that the rest of the world has to face simply by living among them.
Was Zimmerman’s complex actually under attack by the outside world?
If outsider’s were coming in… which as stated by the man in that video… some young black men robbing them… who was letting them in?
When I was in Altamonte Springs a small Florida town not far out from Sanford, where Zimmerman shot and killed Trayvon Martin… I recall visiting a friend whose parents lived in such a complex. While driving into the complex upon her directions to me… I drove through the front gate and up to her parent’s house. At the time it had not dawn on me that they had lived in a gated community. I saw it only as an up-scale new housing complex.
Evidently, Zimmerman’s housing complex had some problems. Otherwise there would not have been a need for someone like George Zimmerman… operating in the capacity in which they had assigned him… Captain of their neighborhood watch.
Well, God bless… Another beautiful day. I got to get going. Gotta edit some video footage for my television show. In case you didn’t know you can check segments of it on youtube. Just type in my name as it appears on my book cover, THE BISHOP’S WIFE.
Hope you enjoy the rest of the day… and your weekend. Might be good beach weather. A couple of Sunday’s ago that is where we were… aching foot and all. My mother said salt water is good for healing the body. So, we were out on the water front listening to the sound of the waves washing in… and getting our feet wet. Bye… and enjoy.
Thank you for reading this blog…and my others. Please be sure to continue to share this blog site with your family, co-workers and all your friends… “pass it on…” www.bsmith101.wordpress.com ©2013
Add a comment July 31, 2013
First Zackery Tims …and now Nicholas Ashford.
Oh, I know… I know that Nick was not known for writing and singing gospel music. But no one can deny that he did come from a strong gospel background… that sometimes even managed to show up in his song writing and way of singing.
And what songs they were. He was gifted… and what he didn’t have …his partner and later to become his wife… Valerie Simpson had. Together they wrote some of Motow’s best known music. Songs like ‘Ain’t No Moutain High Enough,’ ‘It Takes Two,’ ‘Reach Out and Touch Somebody’s Hand’ ….just to name a few. And I do mean just a few… because their list does indeed truly go on and on.
For a while Val and Nick could be caught holding down the evening drive-time radio slot at WBLS,in New York City. In fact, 1 afternoon I decided to drop by BLS with the hope of getting in to see Vinny Brown, an old friend and co-worker who at the time was the Program Director for the station. While waiting …to my unexpected surprise as I happened to look up… standing before me were 2 people I would have had to be totally blind to not to have recognized from the very moment my eyes came up on them.
“Val and Nick,” I heard myself say… as my head jerked back slightly in surprise.
It just kind of eased out of my mouth… I hadn’t realized they were handling BLS’s on-air drive-time shift at that time. So, I was really surprised to look up and see them, standing right there before me… close enough for me to just reach out and touch them. Nick slightly smiled at me… while Val kind of looked off.
From the time I hit college Nick and Valerie had been busy in recording studios. So, I had looked at and played just about every album of their’s. Definitely a sign of the time… because most of the kids don’t even know what an album was …or a 45 for that matter. But yes …I had played Val and Nick for many years. And it didn’t hurt for me to be a big fan either… which meant as often as I could I would sneak them in on my music lists rotations.
As the years went on I didn’t have to continue to ease… I just played them… back to back …or however I wanted. Them and Phyllis Hyman… Donnie and Roberta… Friends of Distiction… Dells… Roy Ayres… George Duke… and whoever else I wanted to program. Including Motown’s Temptations, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye… and just so much good music… The kids don’t even have a clue… they have nothing like it today.
Nobody writes good music any more… they don’t even know what it is to have anything called ‘good lyrics.’ They… the kids are too busy buying beats. A lot of which are stolen from times gone… times that music like that during which Val and Nick came from …and wrote during.
Though they …Val and Nick had long since turned their attention to other things …such as going into the restaurant business… New York’s Sugarbar and I forget what their first restaurant was called …it had been on 22nd Street also in Manhattan.
And whenever traveling home on I-95… as I passed Stamford, CT… my mind would always run across them, as I knew that for a while at least they had made their home in Connecticut.
Having their number I called them once while seeking investors for 1 of my feature film projects. Though I failed to reach them initially… you will never know to my surprise… how thrill I was to receive a call back from them concerning the message that I had left. Val told me that they were just getting ready to open up another restaurant… which was to become the Sugarbar. So, they couldn’t afford to do it at the time. She appologized and told me maybe the next time.
I hung up not at all feeling let down. All I could think was… wasn’t that nice for them to take the time to call me back?
This is my all time favorite song by Valerie Simpson and Nicholas Ashford.
While living in Chicago… Millie J… used to visit a friend of mine by the name of
Jean… who was Tyrone Davis’ sister. Millie had come to town to perform and while talking with Jean… I overheard her say-
“While I was coming through the airport guess who I came across? These two people walking around holding hands. I didn’t even have to look twice. I knew right off it was nobody but Nick and Val.”
They had that something special… kind of like what Michelle and Obama have. A total appreciation for each other… and a desire to always be in touch with one another… as though they cannot do or bear to be without each other.
Just a few seconds ago, a friend of mine informed me that Nick had dealt with sustance abuse. Never knew that …or ever heard that. So, I don’t know for sure. I have not seen him or Val for years now. But I know their music anywhere or anyhow I hear it.
Personally, I cannot imagine Val without Nick. She loved him… and held on to him. And he loved her… and held onto her. And together they held on to each other …a profoundly good example of 2 people who truly walked in love with one another. I certainly pray her strenght in the Lord… and that of their children and other family members.
I had heard his testimony. And what an awesome testimony he had had regarding how God had saved and pulled him out of a messed up life of drug addiction… and having come from a home where nobody knew the Lord. How God had put someone in his path that gave him an invitation… and 1 day for whatever reason Zackery Tims, some 8 or so years ago… called a man on his job who had invited him to come and go to church with him. And that night he got saved… and his life was forever changed.
A megachurch Pastor having a congregation of more than 4,000 members in the Orlando, FL area… on this past Wednesday, Pastor Zackery Tims was found dead on the floor of his Time Square hotel room. The first information said… heart attack. But later information started circulating… that a white powder sustance… cocaine had been found on him.
I had long ago stopped watching him … or some reason or other. I cannot remember why… but it always seems to me that as you watch some of these television evangelists… you like them in the beginning, but then they begin to shift. And everything about them and what they are preaching changes.
I cannot say that about Pastor Tims… because I cannot remember what prompted me to stop watching his program. And it might not have had been anything with him… but a time conflict between the show schedule and my schedule.
His eyes lately were watery or shiney… glossy I guess you could say… whenever I would happen to catch the tailend or some part of his show. And I am not just saying that because I am hoping that after the autopsy is finally released… it will show any drugs in his system. Because I am not… if anything quite the opposite.
I would hate to think that he would have been drawn back… into something that he was blessed enough to have been released from. But when you think back to the events that lead to his divorce… you have to think… Well, maybe.
He was involved with a stripper for a year… that is what the article read. But if it read a year… then it is possible that it was for a longer time than that. While he was engaging in adultry with her… it is very likely that he was also indulging in other things too. And while that relationship may have ended… and who really knows… But if he was drinking or indulging in drugs as well… it is not so likely that he also just stopped abusing either. And do note I said ‘if’… because I don’t know.
I didn’t know him… or much about him except what most of you who also watched the Word Network knew about him. But I was watching the day he leaped upon the top of his pulpit podium to dramatize something he was preaching. I did think that was very odd… and all I could think was-
“That is suppose to be holy. How could he jump up on it?”
But it would seem that not much is still considered to be holy any more in church. I see preachers with baseball caps and hats on in the pulpit… and sweat suits and sneakers. Anything it seems goes today… whatever… however… whenever. My, Lord…
Whatever happened to reverencing the house …and the things of the Lord?
UPDATE: SUNDAY, January 15, 2012…As of New Years Eve this year Pastor Paula White has been chosen the Board of Regents of New Destiny Christian Center. And it would seem that since the autopsy done on the body of Pastor Tims was never released to the public…that drugs had indeed been found in the blood system of the late Pastor Zackary Tims.
With the announcement of Paula White becoming the chosen replacement… Well, it did not seem to sit right with Pastor Tims ex-wife. Tims’ ex-wife claims that Tims’ and her children are being robbed of their inheritance. You can read more on that by CLICKING the LINK below.
Since I am on the subject of Pastors… and since I did write a blog on it. Let me just note here that I read somewhere… or heard it… that Bishop Eddie Long quietly settled his cases with the young men who had filed law suits against him, for supposedly taking sexual advantage of them while they were under his religious leadership as young teenaged boys.
The settlement is said to have been $15 million total going out to the young men in question.
Visiting with a niece and enjoying myself. Can’t you tell?
I have so much time on my hands that I decided to take some of it to write this blog. I rarely have much time these days. I am on assignment… and must pick up my pace. I have to stay busy in the things of the Lord. And at the end of the day… I just want to be ready when He comes.
And for as long as I can remember that has not changed.
I still love this picture… It is sooooo refreshing looking.
Speaking of which… while talking with a cousin this evening… she told me that they were buckling down for a bad storm that they… the insurance claims agents of the company she works for …are being prep for if it should hit us this week on the east coast.
Better get out and pick up a few things for just in case. And no need to wait until the last minute… do it now since you have gotten some advance info.
One other thing… while here. My niece took me by Dr. Martin L. King’s house and the Center for Non-Violence. Took a picture with a tour guide who informed me that every house on his street was bought by the Federal Government… and the only house on the street that is not owned by the Federal Government on that street is the King house… which is still owned by the King family. But the house is open for tours …which are done on the half-hour.
It was amazing watching the people… black and white touring the grounds of the King’s house and the Center for Non-Violence. And it is all free… parking and everything without any hassles.
Mrs. Coretta Scott King was a very smart woman. A woman who was determined that her husband’s death was not going to be in vain… or forgotten. And I mean she did it… and she didn’t do it half-stepping either.
Well, God bless…
Thank you for reading this blog…and my others. Please be sure to continue to share this blog site with your family, co-workers and all your friends… “pass it on…” www.bsmith101.wordpress.com ©2011
4 comments August 23, 2011
Today I had a court date in Land Court. Blessingly, God blessed me not to have to travel to our state capitol to have to do it.
By the time I got off the bus… jumped the train… then walked up the hill… I could barely walk into the courtroom the last time. In fact, I could hardly stand when they called my case before the judge.
Seeing that the judge suggested that we do our next court date by phone in order to make it easier on me. At first I was resistant to that idea because I felt I could better sway the judge… be more effective or otherwise do more and better for my case by standing before the judge than I could over the phone.
But I forgot 1 key factor.
It is not me… that I now depend upon when I walk into a courtroom… or anywhere else for that matter… but the Lord.
I have come to know that if you truly trust Him… then you have to act like you trust Him. It is not about saying ‘I trust the Lord.’ But it is about putting that into action… showing it forth so that it may manifest to be so.
So, I longer study… or pour over anything pining or worrying about the outcome. I never try to even think about what it is that I am suppose to dred… because I do not think about. I do not let it interfere with my days or nights any longer… because God has said ‘cast our cares upon Him.’
And let me tell you… that when you do… you will not believe the outcome.
Truly… truly cast your cares upon Him.
Well, today when I got up… I went about my normal routine. I read a chapter in my Bible. But I decided not to eat anything… I just wanted to mediate on God and what was going to be ahead of me in a couple of hours… that court conference call.
For the first time I glanced over the documents that the lawyer representing the City had sent to me. Pulled out my calculator and started examining the figures for the past 4 years of property taxes owed. Trying to find some discrepancies… and when you are dealing with figures there will always be some somewhere.
As the judge began to speak to me she informed me that the lawyer for the City wasn’t feeling well. I’m thinking wow… it’s over there will be a postponement for another date… and it will give me some more time.
I knew I needed time because no matter which way it went I was going to have to come up with some money. So, I needed time in order to save up an amount that might be agreeable… since there was no issue that the property taxes due. And so…the issue would come down to how much can you pay now… if any… and work out some kind of payment arrangement.
So, I was happy to believe that the case was going to get pushed back again.
But then the judge said that the lawyer for the City has laryngitis and is having trouble speaking. But if you have any problems hearing or understanding just interrupt and I will have her repeat it.
When the lawyer talked I couldn’t understand a word she was saying. I turned up my phone and it was worst. But I decided to listen as closely as I could.
In order to try and save the voice of the City lawyer… the judge had me do most of the talking. In beginning I suddenly remembered our last court session and what questions I had posed about the total amount of taxes owed upon my parent’s property. There had been places in the statements from the City where the amount owed leaped 2 to 3 thousand dollars from 1 quarter to another. So, of course… I questioned this along with some other points I had found in the documents sent to me.
By the time our session was over the judge said send copies of what you have to the City lawyer, and I am sure that the 2 of you should be able to work out something. And if not the court is always here.
And then the judge said-
“And you can get those documents to her when you can. And send copies to the court.”
No payment schedule was set.
No return court date.
And through it all the lawyer for the City never said anything… because she could not talk. She had laryngitis.
It is amazing. A few months ago the City lawyer had sent court notices to me and all my siblings that they were in possession of my parent’s house… and that we had 30 days to respond. And when I called the number and spoke with the man handling it… he demanded $2,000 now in order to stop the process.
And about 4 months later… that process has yet to see the light of day.
And the ultimate decision lays in the hands of the court… and the judge had just finished giving me some more time.
God is truly something.
Some may say why do I give all the credit to God?
First, you would have to know when events are beyond your control there can only be ONE somebody who can turn them in your favor. And that somebody is God.
I write this blog for those of you going through something. Tons of people are going through foreclosure still and so many other things. And though it may seem bleak… or impossible for you to overcome… I implore you to just turn it over to Jesus and see for yourself … first hand just what I am talking about.
No lawyer… or doctor … or even judge… can beat God at what He does. And every lawyer…. doctor … and judge… and everybody in between have to submit to the will of God… like Pharaoh.
God hardened Pharaoh’s heart… until He decided to soften it. And when God softened Pharaoh’s heart… Pharaoh did as God desired him… he let God’s people go… the Israelites. But it was all God’s will… the hardening to not let the people… and the softening to let the people go.
And it was God’s will in land court today… what that man working for the City had said to me some months ago has not gone to naught. I did not have to pay him $2,000 …and that was back in January when he told me that. It is now March… and I am still here and nobody has a hammer over my head anymore… demanding anything from me by way of my parent’s property taxes… or other funds.
That is not to say… the taxes or anything else is not owed. But it is to say… that time is on my side… through the sheer grace and mercy of God. I yet have time to set my parent’s house in order. Thank you, Lord God…
Well, God bless…and hope you enjoy the rest of your evening.
Sometime during the course of your day just take the time to look up and observe the beauty that God has planted up there for you to enjoy.
Oh, yeah… been sharing the house with 1 of my nieces. My sister put her out.
She is only 16 and has gone totally crazy over some boy.
Beautiful girl…smart and everything… and I do mean everything going for herself. ‘A’ student… on the honor society at school… captain of the school soccer and volleyball team… And BAMB!
All of it down the toilet after meeting this boy. Who happens to be 17 and in the 10th grade. LOSER. And she has had sex with him… and now she is out in the streets with me… sharing the roof over my parent’s house.
I can’t wait until my sister gets over being mad. Noooo… but really I love my niece to death. She is not bad… totally not. But recently she has made some very bad choices.
So, currently she is in ‘in-house’ at school because she has skipped tons of classes. Her grades have dropped from the ‘A’s’ to ‘E’s.’
How do you do that?
The spirit of lust. People have lost their homes and families… marriages… children… all of their friends etc… etc… all because lust caused them to do some ugly… and bad things.. say some things… and forced everyone who truly cares for them to turn away from them.. simply because the person cannot hear… nor can they see. They have eyes to see… but cannot see. And ears to hear …but cannot hear.
So, I thought she was going home Monday… But my niece slipped up again. She went missing for 4 hours while she was at school.
Of one thing I am sure… my niece wants to hurry and get out of here. Because her aunt is no joke. Sometimes you just gotta seem to meaner than you really are. And none of my nieces or nephews play with me. But… they love me the most if the truth be told. I know they do… and it is because I love them… I have become to be an enforcer. But I do it all in love… and I can laugh and have fun with them and still enforce.
Now my niece is counting the days when she can go back home… and I know they can’t come soon enough. It is all she can talk about-
“Auntie, do you think my mom this… and my mom that.”
Mom come and ge your daughter… she is driving me crazy.
Thank you for reading this blog…and my others. Please be sure to continue to share this blog site with your family, co-workers and all your friends… “pass it on…” www.bsmith101.wordpress.com ©2011
Add a comment March 11, 2011
They clamor to be in the videos, on the cover of the magazines, on the big screen, sitting on the Oprah show… or on somebody’s reality show. They want it… want it… or 15 minutes of it… if that is all they can get.
Some people have committed various acts… including murder… shooting up high schools …bombing buildings …etc… all in order to get their name in print and/or picture on TV.
If many knew what that life was really like I doubt that they would pursue it. It is a life filled with lots of ups and downs. And plenty of its own uncertainties… and always lots of money and work woes.
There are some things in the video clip above that you should play close…very close attention to. First of all, is the lack of any real care or concern by the woman who claims to be Gary Coleman’s wife.
Second of all, when she finally does start talking to him…listen to how she speaks rather…barks at him like she is talking to a little misbehaving child instead of a bleeding and near dying husband.
And Fourth of all, how much more concerned about herself and what she can’t stand and what is going on with her… which seems to be of far more importance to her than a bleeding Gary Coleman.
Is it possible that Gary Coleman may have fallen prey to a person he should have chased back and away from him…instead of marrying her?
After several episodes of run-ins with fans who seem to have gotten too close to him, where Coleman had been noted as being mean and evil towards them. And often it ended up with him punching 1 or 2 of them in the face.
Then how did he hook up with this woman?
Is it possible that she allowed Coleman to lay there bleeding until he was near death…and then decided to call 911 for emergency assistance for him?
Is it possible that she may have hit him or… somehow or other brought about brain hemorrhage that brought about his death?
Not if you go by what you hear during that 911 call.
What does that mean?
At any rate Gary’s parents have sent their people to step into the picture between that woman and Gary…on their son’s behalf. I really feel for them.
I had always thought it sad when Gary went into court with his parents, who are really foster parents to him. But I guess the only parents he ever knew. And after it happened, I had always hoped that time would have healed that wound between them.
It does happen sometimes in families. In fact in many families it does happen. Most families experience some type of falling out one time or other. But then there are those families that go to grave not ever speaking again after whatever happened came between them.
Those family members who mature and/or come to know that ‘there is nothing like family,’ they learn to but aside differences in order to not to continue to tear the family apart. Many times it is hard but you have to do it ‘for the sake of the family.’ Otherwise, there will be tons of regrets on both sides years later… and usually well after it is too late.
I had to learn through the grace of God to put aside some things dealing with family issues in our family. The things that set us at each other, and all the name calling… finger pointing …can’t override the value of keeping the family together. You have to work at keeping the family together… because no amount of things or ill will or words can compensate for it…family.
Family is important.
Unfortunately, Gary Coleman may have elected to turn his back on the 2 people who may have well loved him the most… to run into the arms of people who filled him up with a bunch of ill advice and evil counsel.
On the other hand Dana Plato’s, the young girl on Diff’rent Stroks, foster mother struck me as being much like Patty Duke’s family and aunt, who saw her as being a gold mine. The same could be said about the father of the star of the movie ‘Home Alone,’ McCaulay Culkin.
It is sad imagining any child who has to endure a life among people who really do not love them… or who value more what the child can earn for ‘them.’ At some point I guess this is exactly what Gary began to feel… though I must say I never believed it about the people who called him ‘their son.’
I think it was murder.
Michael Jackson was a young teen boy when people got in between him and his family too. Over time and perhaps even out of some degree of necessity on both parts… their’s and his… they slowly came back together. Because at the end of the day…family is all you have when you get right down to it. All you have got to depend upon.
Going through pictures of Gary Coleman, I can see that there were times when he wasn’t doing so well healthwise. I produced a documentary on dialysis a while ago. Before it I had never heard the word dialysis before or even knew that there people who could not urinate on their own due to problems with their kidneys.
But I had an aunt who started needing dialysis treatments due to her diabetes. Through her I came to find out about the illness and how it ate away at those who had to depend upon it.
Well, that is one of the side effects of dialysis. Another is the obvious swelling of his face… and the ashy-ness of his skin tone. Do you notice how his eyes appear to almost be shut?
He does look sick doesn’t he?
With so many health issues due to his kidneys since being a young child and straight through his life… which also stunted his growth greatly… and other problems… it is not hard to see why Gary Coleman was as he was. Though such adversity in the lives of others has caused them to not only raise above their circumstances…but to truly go for the stars in ways that Gary did not. They turn their circumstances around by working to benefit the lives of others. But it seems that Gary could not rally that kind of strength.
He seemed to be alone in the world… and the 1 person left for him to depend upon wouldn’t even help him in his final hour of need. What a tragedy…for him …and maybe even for us. As none us tried to help him either.
If you would like to read the 911 call put in by Shannon Price, you can CLICK on the LINK BELOW.
I will never forget watching her taking some award where she graciously stepped to the mic to said a few words to the teacher who told her that she would never make it as an actress. It is amazing the things we remember.
Of course like millions I too sat watching nights of Golden Girls. Who didn’t love ‘ma’ Estelle Getty…or Dorothy her larger than life daughter. And that ditizy Betty White… and that over-aged sex kitten Blanche.
One by 1 they are slowly departing this place. First Estelle Getty, then Bea Arthur, and Rue McClanahan and leaving Betty White. All of them better known by their character names… Dorothy, Rose, Blanche and Sophia…the Golden Girls.
Today there are reality shows… and shows about people trying to win a million dollars. It all became so boring to me that I stopped watching TV a while ago. And truthfully… I have not missed it. Besides, as an adult person my schedule is way too busy for me to be sitting down and watching television.
Didn’t intend to write so much. Now, I have a movie that I want to watch.
So, you have a good night… and a beautiful day tomorrow.
Update Saturday, June 5th: I awoke this morning having left my son’s laptop up on some news items on the oil spill in the Gulf. Listening to it… 1 news broadcast on the oil spill after another… the impact of the breath of this oil spill has finally really hit home to me.
The British people in the upper level of BP really were such big liars. They lied about everything… saying that they had it contained…that it was not going to hit the shores…and that it would not impact the local environment. In the beginning that BP top guy was passing the buck of responsibility on to someone else… some other company… and that it was not their oil rig at fault. Their oil rig that had failed to have all the safety measures that by law they should have had in place. Yet other lies by BP.
Now, the oil slick has hit Florida and is on its way out into the Atlantic Ocean if the clean up doesn’t speed up and can’t contain it any better than BP already has. It all makes me think about the Republican Convention during McCains’ run for the Presidency against Obama. Where they walked around with ton of signs and cries of-
“Drill, baby…drill,” could be heard all over that convention floor. The Republicans were excited about going out and digging more oil rigs… even stating that they would go into protected environmental areas to do so.
This is the video new items that awoke to. And believe it became crystal clear to me that what is going on in the Gulf of Mexico right now is surely going to impact us all.
How is it that a British oil company owns oil rigs in our own home waters… while we are seeking oil from foreign shores of countries such as those in the Middle East?
If we have oil right here in America then we should be producing it and controlling it for our own use. And particularly since these oil rigs are so dangerous and can impact us in such a way as this gushing BP oil rig in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico.
Yes, I am advocating that we all boycott BP…it is time that they started feeling it in their pocketbook. Perhaps then BP might realize that they can’t come into America and treat Americans any kind of way…or endanger us without a hefty price.
THE BISHOP’S WIFE is now on sale…
Thank you for reading this blog…and my others. Please be sure to continue to share this blog site with your family, co-workers and all your friends… “pass it on…” www.bsmith101.wordpress.com ©2010
Add a comment June 5, 2010
Well, we are just getting back in from our weekend little road trip. The weather was beautiful all the way down and back…90’s, baby…and felt like it.
One of my nephews preached his first sermon in his very own church this past Sunday…and we all went down to be with him for his opening ceremony…a monumental Christian event…in a place where I could see he was much needed. In Wilmington, DE…which is a much bigger place than I ever expected and has a very sizable amount of black folk.
While there I could not help but marvel at most of the homes…which were mostly made of stone and brick. They looked very historic…and I remembered that Delaware was an old State that has a very long and rich history due to George Washington having travelled and stayed there. And I could see that many of those homes dated back to that period in history…and had been well kept up and cared for through their long history…and still are.
But Wilmington reminded me of Detroit except for one distinct difference…there were no boarded up houses or boarded up businesses there…as far as I could see. Very much to the contrary was it to the situation in Detroit…in which as I stated in an earlier blogs on Detroit…that every other building and house was boarded up in Detroit due to foreclosures, down-sizing and massive job losses. Detroit was consumed by boarded up and vacated buildings and homes due to the shutting down of many of the factory jobs of its chief industry and job producers…the Big 3…the motor industry. And it looked every bit of it.
But contrary to Detroit…it seemed to me that Wilmington’s future was bright…the city that sits back off of I-95…but not too far off…just far enough off the main North Eastern throughway so you can’t see it.
But who knew that was really back there…down that short stretch of road where the signs lead you over to.
Little has been and is ever said about Wilmington, DE. But then I remembered as I glanced across and looked at the old beautiful mansions that our Vice President, Joe Biden and his family, also lives here…in that quiet little place which isn’t really all that little…and certainly not little at all compared to where I come from. Just 20 minutes South of Philly and not far from Baltimore. Wilmington really struck me as a great place to invest in…if you could find property to buy.
It has all the pluses… Wilmington does… including sitting on the banks of the Delaware River...you do remember that great picture they had in your history book of Washington standing on that boat looking very regal and General-like as he crossed the Delaware. It is funny the things you will remember years later from when you were a little grade school child sitting in various classes at school…of which none of it meant anything to you at the time. You just had to rememorize it because of the test tomorrow…and that was the only reason you placed it somewhere in your memory bank. Who knew 20-30-40-50-60 years later you would still be able to pull up and access that information stored somewhere in your brain?
This is why education is so important. Nothing in school ever seemed important to me. Teachers failed to be able to show the true value of why you should learn something. For some reason they cannot link anything that you do in school with real living. And then later in life you find out that it was all relevant to your everyday living. Like learning how to get up and go to school. Relevance: Getting up and going to work. If you never learned how to get up and get out to school on time you will certainly have problems at getting up and getting out to work on time. Therefore, it is relevant to real everyday living.
(2) Math…this is a big one (well, learning to get up and go to school was big too…) Relevance: Being able to keep track of your money…count your change…add up your groceries before you get into line…monitor your daily spending and align it with your budget and your pay check etc… I told you it was big. But for some reason teachers cannot appropriately inform students of the real value of learning math. There is not one kid…or child…or teen in school who doesn’t like money…and if they realized that math had something to do with money there would not be one student failing math.
Well, I guess you can tell that I am really tired from our trip to Delaware the place where George…oh, never mind…I’ve already said it…how he crossed that river and made history right there in that little…well…not so little town. Yeah…I am real tired.
Having talked often with Aunt Kate…it was not hard for me to tell when I first realized her mind was not as sharp as usual. You used to could say a name and she filled in all the blanks. I loved talking with her…and each time I learned more and more about our family. Her mother…was my grand-mother’s mother. She was a woman who had somehow ended up owning a very large portion of land…and I do mean very large. It ran along the shores and back a ways off from Lake Okeechobee, the 2nd largest lake in the United States…2nd only to Lake Michigan.
I found this out once during one of our last annual summer trips to Florida…when suddenly my mother began crying saying-
“You see this land it all belonged to my grand-mother.”
I was surprised…as my mother rarely became so emotional over such things…and certainly not out of the blue as she had that day. As many times as we had passed through that little town and across that bridge heading over to where I was born and where my grand-mother at the time stilled lived…my mother had never before said anything regarding the size or proportion of any of that land.
That day she told us that as far as we could see and as far back as we had just come…how it had all belonged to our great grand-mother. I had not realized until that moment that seeing where this town now absorbed all of what had been our family’s property…nor had I realized that seeing it as we drove pass it sadden my mother so until that day…as she sobbed loudly over her grand-mother’s property. She had spoken of it before but never had I any idea of the vast amount of property that was involved.
It is from that moment that I started paying more attention to those programs that I saw on PBS about black families going back through city records and trying to regain property which had been stolen away from their families during the mid-40’s through the 50’s…which included very large farm lands…by various people in those towns who simply just re-wrote the deeds to those black people’s property…giving themselves ownership over it without even bothering to purchase the property from any of the black families.
Very little has ever been said about my great grand-mother except for how extremely religious of a woman she was. But Aunt Kate had began sharing with me more about her. She told me of her giving nature…and how she had owned a restaurant. She told me that there had been people during the course of my great grand-mother’s restaurant business who could not afford to pay for the food…but she fed them anyway. She had even opened up the doors to her home and raised a child or 2 which was not her own…because they had been homeless.
“One little boy,” Aunt Kate said was a friend of one her brothers…whom they had found out that when they thought he would leave to go home…that he was actually sleeping down under their house.
Aunt Kate said, “Well, mother, wasn’t going to let him stay down there.”
She raised him along with her own children. He became another brother to our Aunt Kate and my grand-mother along with their other siblings.
Back in those days the houses in those areas of Florida were built raised up off the ground and sat upon concrete blocks. This was how they built all the houses back then down in Florida…raised up off the ground because of flooding. If the waters came up over the banks of Lake Okeechobee…it was hoped that they would not rise above the height of the concrete blocks.
Because Zora Neale Huston stayed in my great grand-mother’s area once upon a time…in fact, her book “Their Eyes Were Watching God”…takes place in a little town sitting on Lake Okeechobee. Imagine my great grand-mother being the great land Baroness that she was…and owner of the black folk’s only restaurant in that town…and just based on how folks lived down there…and still do…I imagine that they…my great grand-mother and Zora Neale Hurston may have known each another. Nobody lives in any of those little towns without knowing everybody…so much so…that they all become very much like family…caring and knowing everything about everyone and everything about them.
But Aunt Kate now being the last of all her sibling…out of 10 of them…was my source for much family history…which seemed to just pour out of her. I never had to ask any questions of her or try to coax her into sharing it with me…very unlike my own grand mother…who always seemed suspicious if you asked anything about our family history. Why I do not know…but it was something that I accepted thinking that perhaps there was something which I should not know.
But upon seeing Aunt Kate for the first time in years…I was somewhat surprised. She was much smaller now…though she had never been a big woman as she always kept herself up, as they say…meaning she always kept herself looking good and in good condition. But she wasn’t looking so good yesterday…most of her hair had thinned out…and she had this large black…what looked like smut smudge straight across her forehead. She had on no shoes or slippers on…of which I had never seen her walk around barefooted before…as Aunt Kate was quite prime and proper. And her feet were terribly ashy…meaning…well…you can look that one up…as I do not want nor wish to continue talking about my aunt in such a way.
But it was her mind…the thing most recently I had noticed in the last few phone calls we had had…her mind was slipping. She was not getting lost…but she had started forgetting things…and who such and such was…when she had always been so sharp about such things.
Aunt Kate was now in her 90’s…and though throughout all of these years age had somehow managed to not show up on her…yesterday was different. She seemed older than her 90 in fact…and she was now walking with a cane. That strong little woman was now…an aged shadow of what she had been…and though I smiled and was happy to see and talk with her and my cousins…it was hard for me not to notice the vast difference in our Aunt Kate yesterday…from the Aunt Kate I had last seen just about 3 years ago and throughout all the prior years.
I often think of the little church mothers in our church…woman who proudly proclaim their ages with such glee…because none of them looks anything near the age that they truly are. They are strong and fit…able to get onto and off buses…walk around their blocks…run errands on their own. There is a distinct difference between them and women who are not in the church. And it is very recognizable.
Though her mother had been an extremely religious woman…Aunt Kate may have been…and may still be quasi-religious. Until a few years ago…Atlantic City had become her friend. She had gotten bitten by that bug…called gambling. And if someone had not stolen some money from her…she still might be going…as it had become a weekly habit for her.
I really do believe that there is something about being in the church…and living a life separate from the ways of the world that will make a difference in your life…as witnessed by the many mothers who are in various churches around the world. There is just something about trusting and living your life as God intends you to live it…that will make a difference.
Yes, I am tired…but I am so thankful that God gave me the opportunity yesterday to finally go and visit with my very kind and loving Aunt Kate…through all the years this has never changed about her. I suspect that it comes from her mother.
There is little wonder that Obama’s approval rating for his first 100 days has been and is high…as he is actively pursuing to achieve exactly what he went into the White House knowing what he had and needed…and said he would do. Handle the business of the American people…and try to undo and dark mark the Bush Administration had put upon this country. And thus far…as my father would say…he has been doing just fine. But what I really like is the fact that the dynamic duo which we put into the White House are both getting high marks.
I always knew that Michelle was going to show herself to be simply wonderful as both First-Mom, First Lady…friend and confident to the man that sits in the top seat and wears the heavy crown…or in this country…heavy hat…President Barack Obama.
I really like reading all this good press about them. He was media darling prior to entering the race…media darling after entering the race…and still media darling after having won the race.
I like people who are consistent…don’t you?
As you know…I do not watch much television. But often while sitting around in a hotel room…I find little else to do. So, this is how I happened to hear about the ‘Swine Flu.” As far as I can tell…it is very much like most of the other flu’s…causing diarrhea, vomiting, fevers, headaches…etc. But thus far it has killed 81 people in New Mexico…and a series of people…up to 40 cases have been diagnosed here in other parts of the United States.
To protect yourself they say that you should continuously wash your hands…and when out in public keep your hands out of your mouth and eyes.
Could not resist this story…CLICK the LINK BELOW to read it and see the video.
I know you do not want to hear my opinion on that…because you probably already know it…if you have read any of these blogs at all with any degree or level of understanding.
But it just goes to prove…just how overboard this whole sexual revolution has become. And I am not shocked…as it seems to me that there are some in the church…or seemingly of the church…who have great interest in the subject and are doing everything they can to spread that interest.
Though, I have to admit that my book, THE BISHOP’S WIFE… certainly touches upon the subject. It is…I guess important…but not something which should be preached or for that matter…needed to be taught in church…any more than sex education in school.
Speaking about my book, THE BISHOP’S WIFE…between it and counting down the days to when it is ready for sell…launching my website…blogging…and hitting the road to promote my book…and menopause…it is wonder that I am anything but tired.
Now, I think I am going to get some much more needed sleep, thank you. Being on the road somehow drains me these days. I love it…but it tires me. I think it throws my whole internal clock off…as I usually am the one driving through the night…and most of the day. But I love the road, baby. Ain\’t nothing like it.
So, if you will excuse me…I am going to rest now. Good-night.
Thank you for reading this blog…and my others. Please be sure to continue to share this blog site with your family, co-workers and all your friends…
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Add a comment April 28, 2009
I see where I am being hit by folks looking for the latest on Dexter King and the law suits filed against him by his older brother, Martin L. King, III, and his younger sister, Rev. Bernice King.
At present I do not see anything new…except for what I last informed you of…Dexter hired EMI to license the intellectual property of his father. Meaning that you could start hearing…
“I have…have…have…ah… ah-ah dream” mixed down with some funky beats. Yes, because that is what ol’ Dexter boy did. He has made it legal for anybody to use his father’s speeches in any kind of music, song or movie etc….as long as they pay him for it.
Need I say anything more…about little Dexter boy.
The unfortunate part is…is that the law is on his side since his…their mother turned over the day to day operation of the Martin L. King, Jr. Non-Violence Center and everything else bearing their father’s name and likeness over to little Dexter.
The only thing that Bernice and Martin the 3rd can do is try to stop him via the courts. But unless there is some loop hole…or God intervenes…and He has been known to not only change hearts…but minds. He changed mine.
But unless He does not intervene…little Dexter boy has the straight-away…to do as he wills. However, both Bernice and Martin and the 3rd are still legal heirs to their family holdings and as thus…they are entitled to whatever revenues that come in…even though little Dexter is the head of the Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. Center for Non-Violence. But since they are also on the board of directors…I just do not see why they do not vote Dexter out of a job. Undoubtedly, the situation is a bit more complex than that.
How very unfortunate. Not just for his siblings…Bernice and Dexter the 3rd. But for us all. There are some things which should always be protected and held in high regard…and never sold to the highest bidder…or given away for a buck.
All I can say to Bernice and Martin is never give up faith…it is the thing that made your father great…and he is who we know him to be today.
Faith is the substance of things hoped for…and the evidence of things not seen. I have hoped…and seen impossible situations turned around in my own legal woes. Surely, what God is able to do for one…He can do that same work again. I have been in court where lawyers didn’t show up. Where judges decided in my favor when I didn’t even know what I was talking about. But I know He is able…
Keep the faith…nothing worth doing is ever easy. But it is the end of the road that tells the story.
Now, I am going to really lay down…and get some sleep. And I don’t want anybody to touch me until some time tomorrow night.
Got the story.
Well, everybody by this time knows that national government has been involved in building a monument in honor of Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. on the grounds of the Lincoln Monument. You know…that place where Obama placed his hand on that old Bible and was sworn in as President of the United States of America. Yeah…here.
Well, ol’ Dex is forcing the society of national monuments to cough up $800,000 to use his father’s likeness in the making of that monument in his honor. Not to mention that the foundation has been paying the Martin L. King Center…Dexter…all along for the use of the words and likeness of Dr. King in its ads and other various fund raising activity they have used in order to raise the money to build the memorial in Dr. King’s memory.
That Dexter…what a son.
You would think he would have been out their helping to raise that money for the funding to build a memorial monument in honor of his father’s work and sacrifice…instead of robbing it to line his pockets. And not dime has he shared with his brother or sister. So much for the character of Dexter King. I doubt highly that his father would be proud.
Now, that some of the major corporations and other organization that pour money into the building of the monument have heard about Dexter’s little licensing agreement…they are re-negoiating their contributions and/or reconsidering them.
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Add a comment April 18, 2009
I was irritated that my son under any circumstance would find it okay for Chris or anyone of the male species to do what that boy did to that girl. He beat her…and one could say it was almost unmercifully done so.
I have really been trying to stay away from the subject because I do not know either him or her…nor much about them or their careers outside of this incident. But what did bother me was my son’s attitude and position on the subject.
I did see the pictures which had been released by the police showing how badly Rihanna, a young singer, had been beat at the hands of her boyfriend, Chris Brown. As young role models for thousands of teens who follow them closely…the incident sets a bad example and sends all the wrong messages to young teens regarding dating, abuse, power and acceptable male/female interactions…as well as, how to resolve issues and problems in a relationship.
Rightfully so, everyone with endorsements behind Chris Brown should drop him…as I have heard that for the most part they have.
I have no doubt that it has made Chris Brown think twice about his actions concerning taking his fist to fight his girlfriend…when males possess more than enough power to restrain and resist any attack against them from most women. So, yes…I believe that loosing all those endorsements have given Chris much to pause and consider.
So, much so that I have no doubt either that it has mostly been him trying to re-unite with Rihanna and get back their little relationship…because when you loose the kind of money I hear that Chris has lost since the story surfaced…not to mention his music being pulled from radio stations…and police charges.
If they don’t play you over the radio…your videos…it is all that is wrote for you…it is goodbye from there…the career is over.
You have got to have air time in order to sell music or anything else. Not to mention the legal charges. Yeah, I am sure…Chris went running to patch up that little miss understanding between him and Rihanna. I am sure…and real quick.
I wonder if he bought her a rock the size of the one Kobe bought for his wife?
Clearly, the type of anger exhibited by Chris Brown, a very young man of about 19 years of age…shows that he is indeed in need of intervention before it is too late…because someone at such an early age like him who exhibits that kind of rage or anger…may kill the next woman.
And my son has it all wrong…and I don’t care what he says.
And I better not catch him out there trying to beat up some woman. Or he will have to fight his mother next.
I think they are a beautiful couple.
Stop trying to bad mouth them with a bunch of nasty little rumors.
The Bible says…we can speak life or death into any situation…by the sheer power of the tongue.
What do they have to prove to us?
There are some people just jealous…and they seek to destroy any and everything thing or anyone they envy.
Out of all those Hollywood families…and Hollywood types…you do not see Will or Jada hanging out…or getting into trouble. Nor is there any bad press about them anywhere…or has there ever been. And then…along comes these ugly rumors.
Well, if you can’t find anything bad…I guess you just want to create it.
I admire and respect the Smith’s…Will and Jada…and their beautiful family. They are wonderful parents and excellent role models. I guess that might be why…the real reason why the rumors are flying.
Can’t believe that there are decent people in the world. But there are…look at the Obama’s another example of a great black family.
We do exist.
Biggie’s mother said, “Lil’ Kim is a white woman in a black woman’s body.”
How sick is that?
Since, Lil’ Kim showed up on Dancing with the Stars…with her new nose…people have been buzzing. In my opinion she has already wrecked the good looks she used to have…when she did the other things that she had done…including the over-sized boob job. If she keeps it up…she’ll be another one who won’t be able to leave the house without people running from her in fear…like Michael and some others.
Who in their right mind would really want to do this to themselves?
I didn’t see the movie…but my son is pretty good critic when it comes to some things. And I just happened to overhear a conversation about the movie…and everybody was agreeing on the same things. So, it has to be true.
And yes, the women on the tennis circuit have a good reason to be concerned over the 22 year old German, Sarah Gronert, who was born having both the male and female sex organs. Though a couple of years ago she had the male organs removed…she still remains stronger than any average woman because of her biological makeup.
Because of her biological makeup…having been born…both male/female…she does possess greater strength and endurance than
other woman could possibly have. And this would, therefore, give her a greater advantage over all of her contenders. Though they state that she has only won 2 tournaments since becoming a pro-player…it doesn’t mean that she wasn’t holding back her added strength until she really stepped into the big time…as she is only listed as being seeded as #619, compared to Serena being #1…and Venus #4 in the women’s world of tennis.
This reminds me of that story I shared with you a while back in another blog about the woman…who was really a man…who came to Salsa Soul, a lesbian organization, and joined…well, sort of. She had gotten really involved in the organization for a few months before the story of who she really was got around to all the members. Or I guess I should say…what she really was got around to all the members.
Though like Sarah has done…she was planning on having the operation. But unlike Sarah, however…she had not been born having dual sex organs…what they call in the new articles…male and female genitalia.
As I mentioned in my original blog on that story…the reason I refer to him as ‘her’…is really because that is what I met him as. Up until that point I had not met anyone like her. He was highly confused as I have come to now know and understand…as well as, I was. He wanted to live his life as a lesbian.
Yes, that is what I said…you have to read my original blog to come to understand the story.
But it was when she was appointed to become a board member of Salsa…that is when all the sisters and what was left of the founding mothers of the organization flew into Salsa one night and demanded a special meeting. They were not having it…and finally had it voted upon…that no one other than a ‘biological female’ from birth could become a board member of Salsa Soul Sisters, Inc.
Though she looked on the surface like a woman…I have no doubt that she possessed superior strength…but mentally could never really think like a woman…because it was not who she really was. All of her experiences had been different etc…etc… And besides…legally he was still a man…at that time.
My opinion on the subject. God does it best.
Even in regard to all that plastic surgery…God does it best.
The body is in constant evolution…from the time we are born until the day we die…our features change…age…mature. Sometimes for the best…many times for the best…but to some who would like to keep what they have…sometimes for the worst. But yet…God does it best.
Finally, I found this article to be highly bias and racist.
Here it is a woman journalist writing that women’s tennis has become boring and that women should not be paid the same amount of money as the men players. Had the top female players not been black…er- African Americans…I wonder if anybody would be complaining about the amount of money they were paid for winning tournaments?
I highly doubt it. These issues only come up when it is about us. It is a shame that we cannot celebrate each other…and our gifts…without bias-ness and racism showing its ugly head.
And he signed the agreement without the knowledge of his 2 other siblings…Martin the 3rd and Bernice King.
So, yes…little greedy Dexter is still at it.
How unfortunate for the other 2…but it is a wonder how the mother, Coretta Scott King, had removed Dexter from the foundation following several disputes with him over the direction he was trying to take the Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. Center for Non-Violence… at that time of which she was highly not in agreeance with.
Why would she have restored him as the head of the center if she knew then the type of disagreeable and selfish spirit that Dexter possessed?
So, Martin and Bernice…never become discourage…fight to the end. And even then continue to fight…because the tide always turns.
There was a point in our family matters…that I was told by my son-
“Ma, you’re not going to win. You should just go back to New York.”
At that time everyone on the planet would have agreed with my son. But God turned the table around. All the road blocks and stumbling blocks were swept away…and I am the one left standing. But for more than a few years it seemed that everything and everyone was against me. But it is true…you don’t need anybody else as long as you have the Lord on your side.
But I had considered what my son said…but conscience wouldn’t let me do it. It would have been far easier to have turned and ran from what was going on with my parent’s estate…and I figured- No, I knew…I was part to blame as I had never tried to intervene from the on-set though I was aware of the problems. But it was easier for me to look the other way at that time…until I was forced to come home and confront all the issues and problems that I had tried to avoid and had looked upon blindly for years.
I have had to pay for my errors…and have to work to build the bridges to bring our family back together. But I am the oldest and it is my responsibility…to not allow us to all fall apart from one another. Families are important…not really should they be allowed to be torn apart. But there comes a time where every ill thing must be addressed and corrected…and fallout does happen. In the end the family will be a lot stronger for it if it survives. But it has to happen…if indeed the family is to survive at all.
I have been so busy working on building my web site. As Fridays have rolled by…I have pushed hoping that by that weekend I would have at least posted a page or 2. It is not that I have not completed more than a few pages…but I am just such a stickler about everything. Everything has to be right…perfect…correct…the music…the photos…the navigation system…the color schemes etc. You name it and I become obsessed with it…but at the end of the day…you will not only like the site…but enjoy it. And that is all I will say on it for now…and hopefully by this Friday…I will have some pages posted. I’ll be working on it…believe that. Enjoy…
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1 comment March 22, 2009
Got up very early again this morning…but I was not nearly as productive as I had been on Saturday. In fact, I got up going to the bathroom and then stopped to read a chapter in my Bible…and then returned to bed.
I spent the past couple of nights sweating out my cold…of course, I can certainly see a vast difference. Been drinking plenty of fluids too…and also been making sure I take my iron tablets. Got to thicken up my blood…which is why I am also enjoying my Cream of Wheat. I am working on my 2nd box of it now…and still enjoying every minute of it. And as I do…it makes me think of how my father used to make it for us as children.
Mondays was our father’s day to care for us. As he was a barber…Sundays and Mondays were his 2 days off. I do not know how they worked out their schedules…but my mother and father did have it worked out as we were never left in the care of other people.
Daddy worked days and mommy worked nights. She worked at a state institution as a nurse supervisor…as I had previously stated in another one of my blogs…my mother had been the first black nurse in the little southern town where I was born.
Everything my parents did centered around us…their children. When they bought their first house…it was less than a block away from the little grade school that most of us went to…there was a bakery at the corner…a drug store…a small corner grocery store and deli…a bus stop…and we were only three houses in from the corner of a main roadway. Not to mention as I see by the city records today…they had bought the largest parcel of land of any 2 family house within our block. They were wise. And on top of all of that…there is a college right across the street.
So, when I eat Cream of Wheat it takes me back to those days…when daddy used to make it for us on cold mornings just as were going off to school. Some mornings he would fry us this thing called festival by some Jamaicans…or fried dumplings. He could really make those things…no matter what you call them. And we loved them…we filled them up hot out of the pan with plenty of butter and jelly…or some times with lots of syrup and butter…but they were good…always. But daddy was a great cook…and for that matter…so was our mother.
I am watching the snow fall down…and it is steady. It had been rain. It had rained straight through the night…and hard. Had all that rain been snow we would have been buried up under it right now. And that rain had been steady right up to the time it just turned to snow not so long ago. Now it is just a steady flow of un-yielding snow. I will soon have to go out and start shoveling…cold or no cold. But I am not going to complain…it is still beautiful.
I remember my friend in New York…the elderly woman, the church mother, who used to go to our church who passed this past August. You know I had never realized until some time later that she had passed on my mother’s birth date. And last night as I was thinking of her…my friend…it also dawned on me that when I had gone to the hospital to visit her…that the floor I had to switch from elevator to elevator on…had the same name as our street…the street that my parent’s house in on.
It is not a common name…and you do not see it everywhere. I thought that to be divine providence…you know…God’s working in the matter. I was very blessed to have had her…to have met her…and that she counted me as a friend. Her guidance to me shall forever be treasured.
In reading the article on religion…it is odd to me that a country founded on the freedom to practice religious beliefs would today be shifting away from having religion at all. But these days were bound to come.
When you reflect back on the years following 1962 when the push began to remove prayer from public schools…then anything bearing the word “God”…the challenge to remove the 10 Commandments from court houses and so forth…then this really should be of no surprise.
I don’t know…perhaps it is just me. But where were all those anti-gay marriage people…and anti-abortion people when all of this was going on?
Droves of anti-gay marriage people come out picketing and marching…and demonstrating…against something which does not affect them…and will never affect them. But when something like taking prayer out the public school system…removal of the 10 Commandments from the court houses and other federal buildings…removing the words “In God we trust” off of our U.S. currency…comes up…where are these people?
Prayer was taken out of our school and replaced by sex education…and condoms. The kids today in school learn less about their A-B-C’s, Math, Sciences etc…than they are about condoms and the ‘birds and the bees.’
Kids do not need to learn anything about sex. Nature through all her infinite wisdom and years of expertise in that department has not needed any help…from the day that Adam and Eve ate that fruit from that tree. There does not seem to be one time in history that men and women did not know how to get together to procreate. And now it seems…little kids too. And I won’t blame it all on sex-education…because that would be foolish and quite absurb of me. But I do not see where educating kids about sex…does one thing to prepare them for their future in life.
But if they wanted to really to teach them something in regard to youth parenting…then maybe like those ‘Scared Straight’ programs they used to have years ago…perhaps they should take them to a welfare office where they get to meet and talk to some teenage mothers and see for themselves the pitfalls of pregnancy at young ages. There is nothing like a little one-on-one in reality in order to get the whole picture.
Or maybe…have them go do work study hours in places like a welfare office or WIC office aiding in in-take service…and they would truly learn a lot that just might give them a reason to pause and to think twice about the consequences of childhood pregnancy.
As I sit here watching the snow…I have been thinking about this guy…this man. I had met him at an event that I gave a few years ago. So, whenever he sees me…he likes to greet me.
Which is fine…I have no problem with that. It is something I became accustom to through my years in radio. Everybody wants to grab you…hug you…kiss you on the cheek. Okay…so, allow it. It is part of the territory…it goes with the turf when you become popular.
But this guy one day while I was in the library computer lab at school saw me…and he came greeting me…kissing me on the top of my head. Okay…fine. I did not say anything about it…but it was on my mind.
But the other day while I was waiting in a bank line…he happened to be passing by and saw me. My back was to the bank door…and he came up behind me. He said something to me grinning…and then kissed me to the back of my neck. I thought nothing of it at first…but later as I got into my son’s truck…in which sat a friend of his whom I was giving a ride to…that is when it hit me.
That guy had kissed me to the back of my neck.
I am very picky. Peculiar…you might even say. I really do not like people getting too familiar with me…and particularly people who I do not really know. And besides…he was not even good-looking. And even if he was…he still out of order…and I am still picky.
After all, this guy started out by sort of hugging me. Then he moved on to greeting me with a light kiss to a cheek…then to the top of my head. And I really should have stopped him then. So, I put it in my mind that the next time I saw that guy I would have to tell him that he could not touch me again.
That time came shortly…while I was once again in the library computer lab. As he approached me…he bent with his arms open ready to embrace me…and I guess kiss me again. But I happened to catch him…right on time…and drew away from him.
I stopped him saying-
“Listen, shake my hand if you want to greet me. But do not kiss me.”
He looked at me oddly.
So, I began to remind him about that day in the bank when he had come in and kissed me on my neck. I told him that anyone seeing that would have thought that we had a relationship and were involved with each other. Then I asked him what he would have thought if he had been standing off somewhere in the distance and happened to see a man kiss me on my neck.
And you know what he said?
“I would have thought that you were involved with each other too.”
“Look, I am a woman of God. I cannot just have people walking up to me and kissing me all over the place like that. Plus that is disrespectful of me for you to do that. You should have more respect of me to even do anything like that.”
Wow, I have truly grown. I am a woman.
Gone are the days when I was a child…and people could do anything to me…or with me.
I have control over me.
And I am not having it.
You will respect me.
Wow… I am woman.
That guy apologized to me…and thanked me for correcting him. I appreciated him accepting my correction. Yet…I felt within myself that it should not have been warranted that I should have had to do such a thing. But men have a way…of taking things for granted…and particularly women.
I felt that many times while working in radio. I hated when my bosses called me ‘sweetheart,’ and ‘dear.’ It was very demeaning to me…while they never greeted each other in such a way…or spoke to each other in such familiar terms. Consciously , sub-consciously or unconsciously…such things historically have been designed to keep women in their place.
When I was a child…I was powerless. When I worked in radio…I had limited power. Today I am my own boss…I wheel power as I may…but yet…I measure it. As I know I can be highly intimidating to some.
But this may come as a surprise to some of you. But I have never been kissed. Not by the male species.
I know I have a son…but that does not mean that I allowed that man to kiss me. And I know that I said in my other blog…that Willis Kattrell…well, he kissed me. And he did. But I think my head was in motion when he did it…so he only caught a portion of my lips. To the side really…of my mouth.
So, I have never been kissed. Not really…though yes many women have kissed me…and I them. But the male species…no.
I never had a boyfriend…and have never dated men.
I am different… Not like most people. And my experiences have been different.
Yet, I am a mother. And I have a fantastically wonderful son. I treasure and love him very much. He too is…different.
This is how I know of generational curses. It was in my mother’s family. And I do realize…that generational curses can be broken. I bear witness to it.
I love the change in my life and look forward to my tomorrow. Perhaps…my husband. I now wish I had had other children. My son often had spoken of it…and still does.
There is this funny thing about me. After having been sexually abused at a very early age…perhaps before or by the age of 10…only twice and by 2 different men…but sometime thereafter, I decided that I wanted to save myself for my husband. I thought I wanted to live in a big house with a white picket fence…with a 2 car gargage…and have all the children that I could have. So, that is what I did…I decided to save myself…and that is what I did.
From the point of whatever age it was…10 maybe less…the last time someone had taken sexual advantage of me…I never became engaged again sexually until some time when I was 25 years of age. At this point…I was only interested in woman. And not just any woman. Gay women…women like me. Women who were upper-wardly mobile and doing something with their lives…professional women mostly in media…though some were doctors, accountants etc…but talented…beautiful…well educated women…who looked and acted womanly.
Not all women who are gay…look it. In fact…many do not. The same is true of men…though the reverse thinking about gays is the myth.
I have no idea as to why I have begun to disclose so much to you…about myself. I shall have to pounder it.
Ahhh…yes… The point.
So, I decided to save myself. Well, at that point I could no longer save certain things as they had been stripped from me. My innocence had been stolen from me. But somehow throughout all the years one thing has remained…my kisses. So, since I have never kissed the male species…or allowed anyone of that species to kiss me directly on the lips…I decided to save it.
I am saving it for my husband…it is the least that I can give him. Unpolluted…un-tampered with…safe within my power…to give…or not to give. So, I am saving it for him. So, no I am not going to let somebody just walk up to me…or sneak up from behind me…and think that he can just come and steal it away from me…not that too. Except for…of course…er, uhm…if his name is Willis Kattrell. (you have just got to read that blog)
And let me just say…that I am still scrubbing my neck today…everytime I step into the shower…I am trying to remove the memory of that man’s lips to the back of my neck.
Well, the snow is slowing up now. And the kids are on their way home from school. I better get out and start shoveling. Enjoy the rest of your day.
Didn’t like the VOGUE cover of Michelle Obama at all…just goes to prove that nobody can do us better than us. Thank God for Essence, Ebony, Jet, VIB, Right-On, Black Enterprise…and everything
else we have today.
Thank you for reading this blog…and my others. Please be sure to continue to share this blog site with your family, co-workers and all your friends… “pass it on “ www.bsmith101.wordpress.com ©2009
Add a comment March 9, 2009
I must say…if I have to say so myself…that I am so proud of me today. Oh…I mean this morning. I do not know what time I got up but by the time I laid back down…it was only 7:57 AM.
I got up and had my Cream of Wheat. And yes…I am still enjoying it. I had me a cup of tea…and read my Bible and then laid back down. A few minutes later…perhaps an hour later…I got up again. I pulled out my bucket…got the scrub brush…and pulled out the cleaners and scrubbed down the kitchen again…then I hit the doors and wall in the small hall leading towards the bathroom. I sprayed down and lightly scrubed down the bathroom…and left it soaking.
Wow…yeah…. I think I should be proud of myself…and it is not even noon yet.
There is something about getting up early. You will get so much more done for some reason or another…if you get up and get started early. There is just something about getting up early…there really is. I do not know what…but that makes you work a little bit quicker and harder…and you just acheve more. And now I feel so good. And so…so proud of myself for taking care of my parent’s house in their absence. For me having gotten up early today..and gotten started the very first thing this morning.
I have been busy working on building my website for the past couple of weeks…and the pages are coming along well. I am really impressed with the pages that I have created thus far. A few years ago I decided to begin taking some graphic arts classes.
When I was in New York and started my own homebased business, an advertising agency, Queen Bee Multi-Media Advertising Agency. I used to hire students from the campus right around the corner from my apartment…Pratt Institute, to do artwork for me. Pratt has a very high reputation as a good art school…which I never knew at the time…but the students on that campus turned out some fantastic work for me. I never went to see a client without feeling proud of our presentations which they had prepared under, of course, my direction.
I represented schools, furniture stores, boutiques, concert promoters etc… There is little about advertising that I do not know about…having also a history in radio sales, media buying, telemarketing, product placement…etc…etc…etc… But I had always had an artistic bug.
When I was a child, I had begged and begged my mother to buy me a home study art school course. After begging for some time my mother finally broke down and ordered it for me. That home study art school cost $300…and my mother ordered it for me. As much as I begged for it…I only did one lesson of that course.
Eventually, I gave away one of the books…of which there had been 3. They were very big and thick…in a large binder…bound in expensive red binding filled with my untouched drawing lessons…and I gave away one of the 3 large lesson books and never touched those books again. Something that my mother had sacrificed to buy for me…and that I had begged and begged for it. And I did nothing with it…short of giving it away…and back then $300 was an awful lot of money…that really had to have been a sacrifice. But she did it for me.
I guess she always recognized that I had talent…that I was gifted. Though she would have done no less for any of my other sisters or brothers…and did. As we all had to take music lessons…and all had various interests. She had bought us all our own instrutments which she had purchased for us one Christmas.
I will never forget that Christmas…which was our musical Christmas. My mother must have bought everything the music store had. Whoever owned that music store must have loved her. That Christmas morning when we awoke…we found a large electric keyboard, piano, drum set, guiatar & amp and accordian all up under our Christmas tree.
Before the day was out I had mastered that keyboard and could play several songs on it. The next day that keyboard was gone. My mother replaced it was a real full size organ. I think back on that now and believe that she did it…because it had posed no real challenge in order to learn. Today both the piano and the organ are still here in the house with me…and nobody plays a note on them. That is not to say that they cannot play them…they just do not bother to do so.
My father, who had a saxaphone, a ukalie and a trumpet…which you could hear him practicing on sometimes late at night…he made me play the accordian. When he would come home from work…I would have to pull it out after he ate dinner that is when he forced me to practice…night after night. None of my sisters or brothers had to practice anything before him…but me. And he always would fall asleep on me.
The accordian which was under the Christmas tree was my 2nd accordian. It was the bigger version of what they had already gotten for me before a year or so ago. And I went out every week to accordian lessons for years.
I hated the accordian. I loathe pokas. I wanted to play the piano…and in the beginning I had both piano and accordian lessons. But daddy wanted me to play the accordian…and we never argued against my mother or my father’s wishes. So, then my piano lessons were stopped.
As I stated in an earlier blog…our piano teacher was also my mother’s voice instructor…a little white woman who used to pay a couple of visits per week to our home…Mrs. Marlow. She was a very nice lady…and she knew her stuff. We were fortunate to have her. And that she didn’t mind coming to the home of black folks…though we lived well. At that time my parents had bought their 2nd house. This house had 15 rooms not including its full basement…and the house sat upon a hill overlooking the waterfront…with a long driveway leading in to our house.
I liked the house…but not as much as our other house. But it was grand…and it was spacious…but it was far more for us to clean…and especially for me…being the oldest.
Oh, man…the living room had windows all the way around so you could look across at the water no matter whether you stood or sat. And it had a very big fireplace…where we used to roast marshmellows…as though we were at camp. It was fun. And that house also had a raspberry tree growing in front of it, with a big lawn and all these beautiful trees with branchs swirling within it that yielded beautiful blossoms in the spring and summer.
I liked it…but it was a lot of work that house…and none of my sisters or brothers had to do more of it than me. I never held that against my parents though. But I did against my sisters and brothers though. They could never just drink from ‘one’ cup…or ‘one’ glass…I was washing dishes all day and night long. I truly know how Cinderella felt.
My parents were hard working people…who always did things for other people…and were always doing for us. Their lives centered around us. Which is why I regret never appreciating them as much as I should have.
I appreciated them…in that I never once caused them any problems…(well…except for the time I thought I could drive…I will tell you about that in some other blog, I am sure). I can’t say I may not have been a heartache…because I am sure that my being gay was not something hard for them to deal with…though they never once spoke about it. I am sure they would be surprised that I am no longer in gay life. But perhaps they had already known that at some point God was going to change my mind and my heart.
But I never gave them as much as I should have. Though they gave us the world…and everything else. There was nothing new that came out that they didn’t buy…from dishwashers on. As we became of age they bought us all cars. And we were always going on trips.
We went to the World Fair…
Do you remember that?
It was here in the states…in New York City that year. Now, only the big globe of the world remains at that site as a reminder of that very huge event. The location today is where they play the US Open.
But we were going to this place and that place…by train mostly when we were smaller…as we grew and learned to drive…mostly by car…and on by plane. They took us everywhere…and everything was a family thing.
I guess they lived the life that people who work…live for. To be able to buy whatever they wanted…when they wanted it…and to do as they wanted. And then…to be able to educate and provide for their children…which they certainly did. And they did it well…as well as, for their god children, neighborhood kids, church people…and those in need.
My parents had 8 of us…and spared nothing…including correcting us when it was called for.
Today, I think my mother would be proud to know that her $300 investment in me…really didn’t quite go wasted. As I later taught art in high school…which is so funny that should have happened…but it did. But I don’t think my mother saw any humor in my wasting her $300 the way I did…because I didn’t even try to pretend to do any of those lessons from that home art school once I got pass the 1st lesson.
One day…I think I was asking her for something else and she flared up at me suddenly saying-
“You are too talented and that is why you will never do nothing.”
Which was the tail end of whatever else she had said…I cannot remember the first part of it. But she was mad when she said it. And I was quite young…but somehow that always stuck with me. I don’t know if I quite understood what she meant…but I had somewhat of a clue. That statement has made me look at everything I have ever done…or thought to do…and it governs the things I am now doing.
Everything I have ever done is in media. From that day…when my mother told me …‘that is why you will never do nothing’…I have sought to not half learn anything…or half do anything…but to become proficient in everything I lay my hands to…no matter how long it takes me…or how many hours in a day or night. But if I set out to do it…then to stick with it.
I had to learn how spend the time learning to perfect things. To not get up from anything that I am doing…becoming readily interested in other things…other gifts…practicing something else.
I do not eat or drink when I am working on something. Nor do I take lunch breaks…or go to the bathroom…nothing. I am throughly engulfed.
Someone, an ex-, told me that I have tunnel vision. Meaning whatever it is, at that point or moment of my life, that I decide that I am going to do…I become so emerged and engrossed in it. So much so…that I only see it…think about it…and in some cases dream about it. I eat…sleep…and drink thinking about only what I am doing…when I am working on something. When I had my advertising business…which I still do…there have been many nights when a client’s project concept came to me in my sleep.
A wise elderly woman…my friend who passed this pass August…whom I have wrote about in a couple of these blogs…she told me that my habit of not eating or going to bathroom from morning into the very late hours of the evening was not a good thing. She told me that I would ruin my stomach…if I continued that practice. So, I have since been working on adjusting myself…my schedule and my body. I would hate to cause myself any medical conditions that I could have avoided. I had always found her wise in her counsel to me.
Yes, I was too talented…like my mother said. I could do a lot of things…and still can. And there is a trap to being able to do so. Most people are good at just one thing. So, they focus on that one thing. But to be multi-talented or gifted…you have to struggle with balancing your gifts.
I had to learn to direct all those gifts…or I would have become a ‘jack of all trades…and a master of none.’
My mother saw that…and that is what caused her to flare up at me telling me what she did that day…and how she told it to me. From that moment I began to focus upon everything I do…like these blogs which to date I have written nearly if not more…than a 130 of them since starting in mid to late June of last year. So, if you have just started reading them…you have alot of catching up to do. And you will have an exam in the morning…
I have always had to direct everything…just so I wouldn’t be all over the place. Though I do not think I have quite been so successful at doing that…I have endeavored nonetheless. But the most I can say…is that it has all been media related. But thank God for my mother saying that to me…and at a time when I needed to hear it…or I would have never been aware of something that was so crucial for me to grasp…and to have graspped it early.
It did not prohibit me from being more or less talented. But made me aware that I needed to channel those talents and not be flighty with them…but to engage them…focus them…and develop them to their highest levels. So, through my years that is what I have been doing. And from time to time…I find myself taking classes here or there…just like my mother.
That is so funny…when I think of. That I continue to take classes just like my mother…which is also something that I wrote about….in a blog or 2 prior to this one.
So, a few years ago, I decided to take some graphic art classes. The marketplace has changed so vastly with the influx of computers and software…everything is done totally differently today no matter what field you are in. So, I began taking these classes…and when I take classes I invest many after hours outside of the class to master the thing.
I do nothing without mastering it…and I invest the time to do exactly that…and the effort. Which when I decided to learn video production… it required me lugging around tons of heavy and very bulky equipment. It was not uncoummon to find me shouldering a 3/4″ video recorder deck, tripod, large light kit and large video camera trying to board a bus. And people wonder why I have muscles now…(smile). And I learned all that equipment…every piece of it…every cable connector…every cable…every kind of editing system, software etc…everything.
“Here comes Spike Lee’s sister.”
They don’t laugh any more though. No, not today…instead they ask about my film projects and what I’m getting ready to do next. I am no longer a joke…but it did not come without struggle. Hours upon hours of vested time, training, exploring…learning what I was doing wrong and trying to trouble shoot on my own…and sitting there until I got it done. Never looking for pay…but always looking to assist others so that I could learn more and sharpen my own skills. But I did what it took…and I still do.
Sometimes even in writing these blogs…I work on them straight for more than 6 or 10 hours…if not more…and it is usually more dependng upon what I am writing about…including searching for pictures…seeking out errors etc.
A professional is what I am…but a perfectionist is what I seek to be.
So, to date the classes I have taken in graphic arts are these…Photoshop, Quark and Illustrator…and additional software I have learned is FinalCut, Adobe Primere, Director, Flash, Dreamweaver, Avid, Fireworks…not to mention being able to write and read html…and having learned also all the latest stuff in radio studios. Though I played a bit with Freehand and at some point will try my hand at InDesign. I love playing with this stuff…exploring the capabilities.
So, I am proud of myself for having gotten up early this morning and gotten off to an early start with my cleaning. I am proud that the website is coming along too. And here is a preview , at the bottom of this blog, of something which I did this past week using the skills I have learned in graphic arts. Those Pratt students can eat their hearts out now. But those kids taught me a lot though…when they used to come for our conferences to discuss what my clients wanted.
Thank God for my mother and father…which is why I cannot understand that girl in Florida who killed her daughter and posted drawings of skeltons and other things symbolizing her acts. Clearly, she was troubled. But a guilty conscience will trouble you everytime.
There is something about mothers…real mothers…that when their child is missing nothing in this world can contain them. They act in a certain way…they become obssessed…and there is no consoling them. They are overtaken by grief and concern…and they are not interested in anybody or anything other than finding their child.
Once my son got separated from me. You will not know the sheer horror that ran all through me during that very brief span of time…but it seemed to me to be enternity. I was terribly horrorified. I was overcome and on verge of perhaps loosing my mind. I had lost my child in a large crowd of people at an outdoor affair which was quite crowded. One second he was right there with me and the next he was gone.
I felt someone had stolen him. And that was all I could think. I did not know which way to turn. People were all about me. I thought to scream out…but suddenly I looked up and across the field. It was as though a path had opened up…and there was my son. One of our neighbors had found him somewhere in the midst of all those people…and was bringing him back to me.
I dropped to my knees and embraced my son so hard…I know I must have been crying. I was so relieved…so happy…so overjoyed that someone had found him…and that it was one of our neighbors. I never experienced another moment like that…as I learned like every good mother who loves her child or children…how to keep my eyes or hands on my child at all times.
So, I certainly know the state that a real mother can fall into just believing her child is gone. She begins grieving immediately…because she will only think of the worst scenario.
That is what I thought about the Susan Smith case. The mother down in South Carolina…or somewhere south…that said that some black man had leaped into her car while she was stopped at a stop light. She said that he had stolen her car and drove off with her 2 small children in the back seat. I do not think that many people had to think twice about that story…but it was her actions following the supposed incident which gave her away. And likewise…were the actions of this young woman in Florida. She was out partying and having a good time.
When I thought of this young woman’s actions following the supposed disappearance of her 2 year old daughter…it made me think of that teenager who was at the prom and gave birth to her baby in a bathroom stall. And how she had walked off and left the bady there in that stall. She had returned to prom dance floor…and continued to dance and enjoy herself as if nothing had happened. For which she only got 2 years…or something…might have been counselling.
I understand denial. I understand that mothership may be difficult for many. But what I do not understand is when someone…a mother…or who be it…commits such acts as these young women against innocence. I cannot understand it. I just can’t…I just can’t… There are so many other options.
Parenting is a process…but some people they are just not equipped or mature enough to handle the responsibilities that it brings. This is the reason…that I know that young kids should never be bearing children. Everybody deserves to enjoy their youth…and have a time to grow up before taking on the task of motherhood and fatherhood way beyond the grade school level…and many times even beyond college. I was 48 years old before I realized that I had become a woman…and that I needed to grow up and start acting like one. Truthfully.
Not to say…that I did not mother my child. Oh, no… I was at doctor’s appointment, dentist appointment…sitting in the back of of my son’s classes when I had to…at every open house almost…and when I wasn’t my mother was. You have to stay on top of your children (just a frame of speech…not literally)…and certainly not in a bad way. But you have be conscious of them…what they are doing…who they are with…caring of them…and for them. And you should never feel that they are an inconvenience to you…and certainly never give them to feel that.
Therein lays the problem for the 3 young women whom I mentioned above. They felt that they could just rid themselves of their unwanted burdens by doing away with them. How sad for their children. How very very very sad…….. Sad.
I was checking through my blogs today…I watch to see what people are reading and who has linked up with me etc… I came upon this link in which the blogger found fault with a person who was standing in a soup kitchen line…and that person having a cell phone. The blogger felt outraged because the person was supposed to be down and out…yet he had a cell phone.
I found that to be as selfish…as a time I was waiting in the grocery checkout line. I never pay attention to what other people are buying…but this person near me…I believe she was just ahead of me but after the person who was checking out. I overheard her saying-
“Did you see that? She’s buying shrimps with foodstamps. And do you see her pocketbook? Honestly, buying shrimps on our money.”
Overhearing that, my curiosity was pricked…so I leaned a bit and saw that the woman had a Louis Vuitton handbag…a very nice and big one…and very nice expensive coat. These are things I also never pay attention to. What do I care about what people have on…as long as they have on clothes…or what type of pocketbook or handbag they have?
It doesn’t make a difference to me.
But I thought it a bit aburd of that the woman making the comment…that she was upset about the shrimps being purchased with the government supplied foodstamps.
Now, how stupid is that?
Even if she had gotten upset over the woman’s handbag…that would have been stupid too.
But she got upset…as if poor people can’t…or should not be allowed to eat shrimp. And that is not to say that that woman was poor…as none of us standing in that line knew her circumstances. But to question what people can or cannot eat depending upon what is or is not our preceived notion of them and as to their place or circumstances in life is absolutely foolish.
Why should that woman in that line…or anyone else in that line…or the whole store, for that matter…care whether or not that woman paid for those shrimps with her foodstamps?
Or whether or not she should eat shrimps or not?
She can eat whatever she wants. And she had legal tender by which to purchase it.
Perhaps, it is just me. Maybe, I’m the one obssessing. Could be…
But I think that some people concern themselves with so many things that really…that they have no right to be thinking about. As it is simply not their concern…or any of their business…nor their place to assess who can eat or cannot eat whatever.
Just how dumb is that?
But that is how I felt about that blog about a supposed poor person standing in a soup kitchen line taking a picture with his cell phone. And here is that picture…
Yeah, he was standing in a line that Michelle Obama, First Lady Obama, was assisting in at a shelter kitchen feeding needy people in Washington, DC…which I believe she does every Friday. I imagine a bunch of people were taking her picture including the camera crew that got these shots. If I was there…I would have taken her picture. And then asked her-
“Can we get one together?”
And whoever wrote that blog probably would have done the same thing.
How many times do you come face to face with the President of the United States…or his wife?
“Better start snapping, baby.”
But why should anyone feel that other people…black… checkered….green…poor… or otherwise are not entitled to have certain things?
That really seems stupid and quite selfish to me…and certanly demeaning.
“Well, if they couldn’t afford the mortgage they shouldn’t have bought the house.”
And I have heard this more than a few times…particularly following the last bailout of the banks on Wall Street.
Did not your parents struggle?
Don\’t we all struggle to pay off stuff?
Most people do. And they are not wrong to do it.
I believe that everyone wishes they had the money to buy and pay for everything that they want…when they want it…or need it. But that is not how life is.
The unfortunate thing about it…is that no one knows what tomorrow will bring. And we are all looking towards tomorrow.
When I looked upon house after house..and business after business boarded up in Detroit…I know that those people had been looking towards tomorrow. But none of them realized that when tomorrow came it would mean that jobs would be cut back. They did not see that the company they worked for…that their father and grand father had worked before them…that they would be downsizing or laying them off. Or as they call it now…’re-organizing.’
Who thinks like that?
The wrong does not lay with them…most of the people who find themselves in foreclosure…it lays with the mortgage companies which preyed upon people with over inflated interest rates…red lining, offering higher rates to certain people…higher closing costs…a bunch of double talk and small print…with high late payment penalties…and absorbent legal costs which they love attaching to their costs.
I don’t know if any of you have ever had anything repossessed. But once they repossess your vehicle or house or whatever…the company then comes back at you to extract the money even though they repossessed and sold off whatever it was…and they leave it sitting on your credit reports for years upon years hindering you from getting anything else. This clearly is double dipping…and these companies…none of them should be allowed to do that.
Once they have repossess the object…and they have sold it off that should settle the debt. But no…they come back after you. And not for the debt minus whatever they got for it…but the entire debt plus all other costs.
A friend of mine who worked for Greyhound buslines once told me how she had been sold a faulty vehicle. She said it was a real lemon from the day she pulled it off the dealer lot. So, she returned the vehicle several times to the dealership who in turn never did anything fix the problem.
Finally, she became tired of trying to deal with the auto dealer…and just returned back to the car to the dealership where she had bought it. She said that she drove right up on the lot in the middle of the day and left it there. She stopped making payments on it…telling them as she left the lot that they could keep their car.
Years later, however, she noticed that her pay was being garnished…it was the dealership. They had kept the car but now they were forcing her company to withdraw payments from her pay check in order to pay them for a car which she had given back to them. And at this point…she just folded her hands and gave up. She let the company take her money…because she felt that it was a hopeless situation.
There is something seriously wrong with the system that allows companies to use these kind of tricks to get over on and rob people. Companies like that dealership abuse…exploit and use the system…to their benefit…a company that knowingly sold her automobile which was not in sound operating condition…and they knew it.
I had asked her if she hadn’t gotten the notice to go to court? And she told me that she had not. Without going into court to defend yourself…as I have stated in another blog…the other side wins automatically. If summoned to go to court…go. It is scary…yes, but go.
The most that can happen is that the judge won’t decide in your favor.
There is always a case that you may not receive the summon…if they have it sent to another address. These are games that people play. It is the game that CitiMortgage played against my parent’s property. But they had not counted on the fact that I knew…by the grace of God…to go into court and file my own complaint against them…to stop the auction…and have since gotten that mortgage nullified and made void. And believe me when I said…by the shear grace and mercy of God. That is how it was done.
In closing let me just say…
“Stay away from bad deals.”
If you are interested in something…or getting ready to sign a contract for the purchase of something and that contract is not in your favor…do not sign it. Do not go into a deal…or debt…in any type of an agreement in which you are not at least a partial winner. Or at the very least…where the pain is not so great.
Sometime, we have all had to swallow a little pain…until we can fix things…like our credit. But yet beware of the sharks…stay away from them.
In the claim I had to file against CitiMortgage…they claimed that my father had taken a loan against the house for some $27,000 at a 16.20% interest rate. This total agreement netted CitiMortgage over $60,000 in interest money…making the total contract for over $97,000 worth of debt against my parent’s house.
My father would have never made an agreement like that. And the other part of it is…he wasn’t much of a borrower. Didn’t have any charge cards or anything like that…because he earned money to pay for what he wanted. And that is what he did.
Nobody in there right mind would have signed a deal like that. The company was making 3 times as such as it was giving out…that is robbery no matter how bad your credit may or may not be. And my father did not have bad credit.
I knew that document was a forgery even before I saw the signature upon. So, I took the case to court…claiming that they had preyed upon my father, if indeed he had signed it. At the time that contract was supposedly sign my father had been diagnosed as having Alzheimer’s which would have rendered him as being legally incompetent to enter any type of legal or binding agreement. Plus my father had several bank accounts and definitely had at least one which had more money than that in it. So, I sued…of which I wrote about in a prior blog also.
I continue to pray for you and whatever situation or condition you are facing. Be encouraged. And stay away from bad deals.
Well, my little siesta is over…it is time for me to go back to work. Actually, it ended hours ago.
I have to finish scrubbing down the bathroom. And I am getting a bit hungry now too. But enjoy your weekend.
I just finished looking out and it looks like snow…again. But it is warm on the inside. Though it might be that I am running a slight fever. Been fighting off a dry cough for the past few days…but I am winning. Well…some times…I think.
Maybe, I will just finish the bathroom…take a shower and crawl back into bed…and forget about mopping the floors tonight. It’s late now.
Oh…yes, here is a taste of what the website will look like. Now, you tell me whether or not if you think some of those classes that I have taken are starting to pay off?
Thank goodness for a mother who was not afraid to speak truth into the life of her child.
Thank you for reading this blog…and my others. Please be sure to continue to share this blog site with your family, co-workers and all your friends… “pass it on “ www.bsmith101.wordpress.com ©2009
4 comments March 8, 2009
Sometimes I just become so overjoyed that I can’t keep it to myself. And this is one of those times. I am suppose to be working on launching my website…which should be up this week. But I just couldn’t not before writing this blog…to tell you just how good God is to me.
I know that many many many people are currently facing foreclosure and until I started taking care of my parent’s property it really never mattered much to me. But following the passing of my father the 2 mortgage companies which had mortgages against our property put us into foreclosure. But not being on the mortgages the companies refused to tell me anything…and I was the only out of my 7 other siblings who felt our parent’s property was worth fighting for and eventually paying off.
But because my name is not on the loans for the mortgage (which of course it would not be…since the house belonged to my parents and it was their loan). So, the mortgage companies legally did not have to give me any information regarding my parent’s account…and for the most part that is what they did. They refused to share any information on their account with me…even though they knew that my parents were now both deceased. And the kind of information I wanted was a copy of the payment history of the entire loan and all other information concerning it…the whole history of mortgages.
Finally, CitiMortgage, one of the mortgage companies…the one with the highest balance and most difficult company to deal with…they sent me a copy of my parent’s mortgage. After going over the documents it showed that supposedly that mortgage had been refinanced in 1999. But my father by that time had been diagnosed as having Alzheimer’s. Besides his left hand shook badly…which meant that his signature would have been severely affected when he wrote. But that copy of the supposed mortgage refinanced by him showed no signs of a wobbly hand. And even if it had my father’s mental capacity being what it supposedly was at the time…he was not legally competent to enter into any such contractual agreement.
So, I filed papers disputing the foreclosure by CitiMortgage against my parent’s property based upon it being a false document…and as being such CitiMortgage’s foreclosure was being based upon a fraudulent document which would nullify that contract and halt their foreclosure based on the amount outstanding due to that document.
Well, after I don’t know how many months…and after receiving information from CitiFinancial that they were in possession of my parent’s property. I went back to court. Because CitiMortgage/CitiFinancial had failed to answer my complaint against them. So, I entered a default against them. Today, I received my notification that my default had been granted.
I cannot tell you how overjoyed I am. Through the grace and mercy of God…I had won. This decision totally knocks out a mortgage which added over a hundred thousand additional dollars onto my parent’s prior loan.
I knew in my heart that my father would have never placed an additional $100,000 of debt upon our property. That money was supposedly against a loan of nearly $30,000 at an interest rate of over $60,000 making CitiMortgage a mighty big winner in that contract. My father would have never done…and particularly since he had already had more money than the alleged near $30,000 the loan approved for…as he had more than that already in at least one of his several bank accounts. So, I went into court Pro-se as a heir to the estate of my father…and went to fight. But God fought that battle for me. And I cannot thank Him enough.
I wrote this blog because I know that many people are going through much of the same. It is very difficult trying to go to bed night after night…and not know whether or not tomorrow you will be deposed and kicked out into the streets…because some bank or mortgage company took over your home.
One of the biggest frauds going…happens when people in mortgage companies find out that there is a dispute among family members following the death of someone of whom they hold a loan against their property. This opens the door for all kinds of things to happen if the people or a person within the mortgage company is a distrustful crook…that might shock some. But it is very true…and not just with mortgage companies but lawyers also…anyone sitting in a position they see where they can take advantage of.
Anybody sitting in a position who can take advantage of such a situation many times does. Because they seize upon the family members lack of communication with one another and their inner turmoils and conflicts to keep the family members too busy at each other’s throat…and it allows the cheats the freedom to do whatever they will. It is for this reason that I asked to see the complete history of my parent’s mortgage from the initial mortgage on. For which I never got because they refused to release to me. Nor did any notices of court dates come to house regarding the foreclosure hearings.
By not getting those notices…the notices regarding the foreclosure hearings…I could not appear in court to defend my parent’s property. And since none of my other siblings cared…they didn’t go either. This meant that that by default the mortgage company won their foreclosure because nobody showed up on our side of the table…or who represented us in court.
I tell people all the time…the worst thing you can do in a court case…is not show up. By failing to show up the other side automatically wins. Give yourself a fighting chance. Show up and tell the judge your side of the story…you may be pleasantly surprised by the outcome. It could make a difference.
If you have been reading these blogs then you also know that I had entered a case in the Appellate Court.
Perhaps you are familiar with this…and are guilty of the same. Though I must say as a rule I am not a procrastinator…but for a couple of weeks I had been walking around with the letter from the Appellate Court unopened. I get tons of mail…and there are some pieces that I put off opening simply because I don’t want to think about it…and I am afraid of what it might be informing me of. This was the case regarding my default notification from the court and this letter from the Appellate Court…both of which I finally decided I couldn’t put it off any longer. So, I opened them up this morning.
It turned out I had been dreading good news from both courts. The notice I got from the Appellate Court was to inform me that I would not have argue orally our case before the judges. Though I had requested to do so…I really didn’t want to do it. But from where I stand nobody can better present my case than me…and particularly since when my son had gotten a lawyer…the lawyer told him to settle for $1,800. Our car had been totaled, my son suffered back injury (which still plagues him today)…and on top of that the repairs that the insurer of the other vehicle (the one that caused the accident) authorized were not sufficient considering the amount damage sustained to our vehicle.
So, I filed the papers myself…when you do this it is called “Pro-Se.” But it was not because of any of the reasons I have already listed that drove me to file suit. No, I filed because they had returned to my son a faulty automobile which could have killed him…and they didn’t care. The car shook…the bumper would fall off while he was driving…and at the time of the accident my son was away at college in a town which had no public transportation…not even cab service…which is why I had to buy him a car in the first place.
So, I filed suit in conjunction with my son against Allstate Insurance. And today I heard from the Appellate Court…because if you recall, also in a prior blog, I explained how my son had really won the case…but how the whole thing had been a set-up and ended up in front of a judge who was friendly with the other side. Don’t act shock to hear this…it happens everyday…watch LAW & ORDER. It is regular practice for lawyers to call the clerk’s office to find out which judge is in what court and when. And try to schedule their hearing before judges who are very lenient or favorable to them.
Had we lost our case in court fairly…I would have accepted that decision. But I could not knowing that we had not been unjustly treated and all our evidence and testimonies had been overlooked. So, I filed a Notice of Appeal…and to the Appeals Court we were a going.
One of the most involved documents I have ever had to put together was the legal brief that was required of the Appeals Courts. It was over 100 pages in length and required many hours of research in a local law library and several days of typing…but I did it. By the time our case finally got heard…following all the hearings for the various pre-hearing court dates for…Motions to be entered…and Mediation…etc..and all our travelling back and forth…many times when we barely had the money to go and come back. But we did it any ways by faith…over 900 miles each time.
Now, the notice from the Appeals Court today informed me that we would not have to present our case orally before the Appellate Court. I had covered everything so completely in that brief…and in great detail…including the court transcript to back up my statements. I am so happy that we do not have to go down and stand before them. Standing before several judges dressed in black robes…would have been a bit un-nerving for me. But if I had to…I would have done it. I had prepared myself to do it. Because from the on-set…I had not filed the papers to lose our court case. And I always knew it was just a matter of how much…because we had all the documentations, receipts, invoices, pictures etc. to prove our case. Many times in court just having truth on yourself is not enough…you must have hard evidence…and we had both truth and hard evidence. Then they next thing is to be capable of delivering that evidence before in a logical and as near legal manner as you can master.
I tell you this…because I do believe that if more people sued for wrongs and injustices…maybe some of us others would not have to. We live in an area where they want to make you feel guilty for having to sue. But believe me…many times a law suit is necessary to resolve many matters. The problem is most lawyers won’t take any cases that they believe they won’t make any money on…or that may tie them up for too long. This leaves those who can’t go into court for themselves with no choice but to drop the matter. And even I have had to decide whether or not something was a battle to fight or not.
I have not sued everybody…though my son and most of friends believe I have. But I have not. Some of them I have left for God to deal with. He can do things to them that I cannot.
This reminds me of a time when I was in grade school. While in the cafeteria one day just as I was about to sit down…this girl took her foot and snatched the stool from up under me. I fell flat…and everybody laughed at me.
I was so mad that I began praying to God to do something to the girl. And a couple of years later I realized he had. The girl is very unattractive…and I have always thought God did that to her because of me. Truly, I have. From that point on I have never prayed to God to take care of anybody else for me. I thought His punishment to her was a bit too harsh.
So, for the cases I decided not to pursue…I have just left it up to His discretion if He wants to do something about it or not. The Bible says…He rights every wrong.
But I will keep you posted on the Appellate Court decision.
The reason behind this blog is to encourage those of you who are facing foreclosure…or any other problem…legal or otherwise. Do not give up. Go back through your paperwork…there may be something in it which can turn your situation around. You may find a loop hole…lawyers use them all the time. But if they can so can you.
Always remember that God has the final word in all situations. And that He is faithful.
My parent’s property is still in foreclosure but now all the money paid on the property from the date of that refinance date that I disputed to present will have to be reverted to the old mortgage…and with interest.
The Bible is true…God is always working it out for our good. I am just so happy.
God is good. And I am so happy that he is a friend of mind.
As I have said in my other Black History Month posts…the reason I have not given you any information on the people that I list is so that you will be motivated to research who they are. This will prove to far more helpful to you…and to your ability to remember their accomplishments.
Well, God bless…
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1 comment February 24, 2009