occupy together

Starting September 17, 2011, adbusters (ironically, a Canadian magazine, called for the American people to #occupywallstreet (that’s twitter talk). Four weeks later, the movement is alive and growing throughout this great country, the US of A. Yes, we have it good compared to Iran or Somalia but it can be MUCH better. Too many people are unemployed, sick, unhealthy, over worked, misrepresented, and disenfranchised to be living in a so-called free society or even a democracy. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, watch Democracy Now some time!

I have copied a few of my favorite links,Β  images, or videos that are related to the OCCUPY WALL STREET movement below (this should keep you busy):

WE ARE THE 99 PERCENT! (tumblr page)

Read this letter please (EXCELLENT!!) :

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2011/10/12/1025555/-Open-Letter-to-that-53-Guy

My 2 favorite protest signs:

Watch the LeeCamp youtube channel:

“Greed is no longer Good. … The revolution would like to apologize for shitting all over your apathy.”

this guy is hilarious yet right on … “STOP THINKING POSITIVELY … wake up from your vacation of innovation.”

and most importantly,

Get rid of your television! It’s the best thing I’ve ever ever ever done!!!

peace, love & adventure!

Lala

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i love my life!

really πŸ™‚ just needed to acknowledge this. happy weekend!


gratefully yours,

*Lala*

 

Why Did I Eat That?

photo_klawdietIn my New Year message, I mentioned focusing on 3 things this year. The first being my new web site and book project. Well, the time has come. My blogging energies have shifted from here to here:

http://wdiet.net/

I’m so very excited about this project titled, Why Did I Eat That? (W.D.I.E.T); and seeing that the best way to bring traffic to a web site is to link to other web sites, I thought I’d start here.

WDIET is short for this catchy-title — a dynamic and light-hearted food book turned food blog that offers recipes, recommendations, and information about all things food related.

Take a look, subscribe, and please share with your friends and family!

Muchas gracias – thank you very much – muito obrigada!

*Lala*

india


back in NYC again. my time off has been a glorious mix of play, warmth, conversation and flirtation — i even shoveled snow at my Mom’s place which was super fun. speaking of shovels, this morning, i woke to the sound of my neighbors scraping the snowy cement and smiled because winter is in full force and we have barely made it through January. no sweat. i have a new mind or perhaps i have returned to my old one. either way, nothing can stop me — especially not snow.


i am flirting with the possibility of romance. not to be confused with love of which i have plenty. i am grateful for the work that love has produced but a girl needs romance too. love belongs to all of us and comes in numerous form. romance is sought after by the heart and loins coated in pure vulnerability. the other day, i watched a man on the train platform and felt a deep love for him (with a little lust thrown in there too). this is what i wrote in my iPhone:

Streetwalker. Today I am a one woman show. I’m watching. Hoping that you will enter the same subway car as me so I can watch some more. We are close but too far to speak. I noticed you tip the Mariachi singers just as they switched cars. I want you but only to look at and smile on. You too are present, gazing at the violinist at Jay Street station, and this makes me want you more.

You must be hot because your coat is wide open and I can see that you’re clothing is made for you, the way your shirt hugs your body and your jeans adopt your frame, slender yet athletic. The A train arrives and I am tempted to follow just to see what’s next in your life. So long beautiful stranger. What’s your name?

Yesterday, after a 9am yoga class, I visited India by way of one of my favorite Brazilian songstresses, Gal Costa. In the confines of my living room, I danced with an old friend to this song bearing the same title as this blog post. Produced in 1973, I discovered it during my stay in Bahia in a cute record shop in Pelo (of course, I bought the album): (it will play in a separate YouTube window if you click on it twice)

Gotta run, I’m making lunch for a former co-worker today and I can’t wait to see her face πŸ™‚ Congratulations Nina on completing your thesis statement and obtaining a Master’s degree at Pratt U!


This weekend, it’s going to be a cold one New York so bundle up, drink plenty of tea, and eat something hearty! And if you wanna come by for a snack or beverage, give a call!


Oh yes, Mr. Conti, bring some warmth back to NYC when you return. Super lovely to chat with you yesterday and thanks for doing your best to stay in touch. Happy travels πŸ™‚

Hugs, love, smiles and cuddles!

*Lala*

new HAPPY year

Give thanks for we have made it to another year! It amazes me how fortunate we are to be alive in this day and time. Boy, we have it ultra-easy compared to those who have lived before us.

I am extremely grateful for my good health, for clean water, for earth and sky, for my amazingly fit body, for my incredibly supportive and fun-loving family, for a strong heart, for a decent, safe, and comfy home, for experiencing love in many forms, for an abundance of food (a special shout out to Kale and Beets), for friends who inspire me, care for me, tolerate me, and teach me, for the many skills acquired over the past 15 years, for art and the artists, for creativity, for reiki, for vipassana, for yoga, awareness, for dopamine, for the ability to travel, and most of all, for peace of mind (stillness).

Each year gets better even when it feels like a tough one. Hindsight is a teacher and blessing. With each triumph, loss or mis-hap, I discover that the universe is on my side and everything that has happened to me has made me stronger, wiser and more capable.

For me, 2o11 will be primarily about 3 things:

1. My New Web Site and Book Project (W.D.I.E.T)
2. Love, Partnership, and Relationship Building
3. Awareness, Conservation, and Education

What about you?


I want to acknowledge the people who inspire me, encourage me and accept me. I love each and every one of you tremendously with a whole heart and positive spirit. Thank you for being a part of my life and for keeping our friendship or relationship alive and ticking!

You know who you are!

Lots of love and productivity in 2o11!

*Lala*

merry christmas mom

season greetings oh beautiful one!

when we were kids, my parents (or santa πŸ™‚ showered, i mean monsooned my brother and me with gifts on christmas day. we would come downstairs to a living room filled with the latest and greatest toys, dolls, robots, bikes, clothes, video games, and candy! thinking about it now, it was mad-crazy-ridiculous! and i thought that every kid in the world experienced christmas in this way with lots of love, toys, gifts, food, family and friends. oh what a wonderful world that would be!

bad photo but it's an old christmas photo

i’m not exactly sure when i stopped celebrating christmas but it was a loooong time ago. i suspect it was a combination of many things. perhaps i was absolutely fed up with being broke or pretending that i was something i was not. i also had a shopping problem back in the day and it’s taken many years for me to drop the habit. christmas shopping is my internal trigger for this addiction. once, i get the shopping bug, it’s difficult for me to put on the brakes. i would buy a gift for mom, then two gifts for me, and a gift for my boyfriend and three more gifts for me…until i had over $10k in debt and had to eat hot dogs for six months just to hold onto my apartment. those were not the days!

i remember decorating my first place in philadelphia with christmas stuff; but after the first year, i couldn’t justify spending money on shiny plastic and other frivolous items “made in china”. nothing against china but does the U.S. manufacture anything anymore?

removing myself from the holiday hype, i made a conscious decision not to shop or support the retail giants who brand holiday cheer while using sweat shops and charging exorbitant prices in an effort to make record breaking profits. i gradually pulled away from christmas but it was not so easy and it still isn’t because many people i love cherish this time of year.

some years it feels like i am standing in the bleachers with my back turned and the whole team is booing me. it’s all good, i can take it plus my brother doesn’t celebrate it either which takes some of the focus off of me.

please, please do not get me wrong, i am not a scrooge! i will show up at xmas dinner tonight with bells on and genuine holiday cheer all over my face. however, i don’t believe i have to celebrate christmas just because almost the entire world does. maybe this will change, when i have a family but for now i am sticking to my story.

the best part about the holidays is: the loving, giving, smiling, and togetherness!

my mother has caught on this year and will not be spoiling her two grown children with gifts and i get it. we spoke the other night and i suggested that next year, we volunteer at a soup kitchen together, give to our favorite non-profits or independent effort, or buy a chicken or goat for a family in need.

5 of my favorite organizations to support: (feel free to comment and add your favorites)

1. Democracy Now
2. Story Corps
3. Partners in Health
4. The Rural Haiti Project
5. Doctors without Borders

Mom, merry christmas to you and thank you for making the sacrifices so that we could spend our childhood in heavenly toy-filled bliss. the best gift you can ever give us is to keeping taking great care of yourself and being a positive presence in our life!

we love you and appreciate all that you are and have done!

I’m back from Cali and here are photos below from an exhibition in LES at the LZ Gallery where my friend, Jasmine Murrell, was a part. Go Jazz!

self-portrait by Jasmine Murrell



have a splendid weekend and to quote Mr. Santa:

HO*HO*HO* Merry Christmas!!!

*Lala*

ps. as of 2008, i no longer use credit cards and i am debt-free! now that’s something to celebrate!!!


HIPpyHOPpy [explicit]

New Podcast! [explicit lyrics]

my first hip hop album was LL COOL J’s Rock the Bells or was it the single, My Adidas by Run DMC or maybe even La Di Da Di by Slick Rick. It doesn’t matter, the point is that I’ve spent the past two weeks searching for decent hip hop that is void of just one of the following words:

  • Nigger
  • Bitch
  • Motherfucker
  • Ho

Sad to say I was unsuccessful. Hip hop music, simultaneously went mainstream and took a turn for the worst in the early nineties. I remember listening to N.W.A.’s Fuck tha Police and being blown away by the sheer bravado of it all — from the name of group to their outfits, attitude and lyrics. It was the perfect soundtrack for far too many incidents of police brutality happening at the time — with the Rodney King beating occurring just three years after this song was released.

Fast forward to 2010, while waiting for the train this week I noticed the November issue of XXL Magazine. I have never read this magazine but the cover got my attention so I photographed it with my iPhone.

November 2010 Cover of XXL Magazine

As the late great Marvin Gaye said, What’s Going On?

Look closely at this image. Do you see the penitentiary-like homosexual undertones here? Why is a grown-ass Black man wearing a mask standing behind a smaller built Black man who has his underwear on full display? I have never seen two Black men chillin’ like this in my neighborhood. So why? and I’m all about artistic expression but … Damn!

Per the U.S. Census Bureau, African-Americans account for only 14 percent of the U.S. population, yet an estimated 53 percent of all prisoners in the United States are Black. Don’t be misled, this is mostly due to racism and discrimination but those are the facts.

At first glance, most of these details were lost on me but at closer inspection, this image glamorizes prison life or a lifestyle that will eventually lead to death or prison and the sad thing is that both 50 Cent and Soulja Boy appear to be willing participants. Some people will do almost anything for fame and cash.

Dumb Down is the first full length track on my most recent podcast, it does a great job of highlighting the problems we are facing. Non-Black persons are not excluded. If you haven’t noticed, hundreds of thousands of men and women all over the world are emulating the hip hop community.

Tahir Hemphill

This past summer I met an artist named Tahir Hemphill who founded the project, Hip Hop Word Count that uses a series of algorithms to determine the education level needed to understand various rhymes, employing analytics of metaphors, similes, cultural references and other measures of sophistication.. Fascinating stuff, check it out here.

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