Wednesday, June 14, 2017

“An Angel without Wings”



Where to start? There’s so much to say about my mother, but who would listen, or better yet, why would they listen? To some she was just a stranger, someone they blindly crossed paths with during their journey on this planet of ours, but to others who were lucky enough to know her, she was a pure blessing, a bright light in this otherwise dark world of ours. Was she perfect? Of course she wasn’t, just like none of us are. However, in my eyes she was pretty damn close. I am extremely proud to call myself her son.
 
She grew up in a simpler time, one where Elvis wasn’t able to shake his hips on television and where most people preached peace and love over hate and condemnation. The world around her may have been black and white and as carefree as an episode of I Love Lucy, but her personal life was anything but. Throughout her life she experienced abuse on many different levels, physically and emotionally, some of which would make toughest of us wince in pain and would fill the most joyous of hearts with tremendous sorrow. She kept much torment and regret locked away in her soul. She did her best to overcome it and make her life, and ours something better than what she was used to.
 
One would think that considering the circumstances she would be jaded, that her glass would forever be half empty. That wasn’t the case. She loved and showed compassion towards everyone, unfortunately sometimes even to a fault where she was taken advantage of and undeservingly hurt. She would try to find the good in everyone; she would constantly be digging through the weeds of one’s heart trying to find the single rose that she believed existed. She was the epitome of what I meant to be a human being; she did our species as a whole very proud. She wasn’t a kind and giving person because it was the hip thing to do; that’s who she was to her very core.
 
She also had an amazing sense of humor. She would laugh her ass off when someone fell, and yes, even before checking if they were alright. There was just something about people losing their footing and falling to the ground like a ton of bricks that struck her funny bone and left her laughing hysterically like a hyena on laughing gas. When you tripped and/or fell around her your best bet was to swallow your pride and laugh along with her, because no amount of bruising, body or ego, was going to keep her from enjoying your balance mishap. She didn’t do it to be hurtful, she just couldn’t control herself.
 
My mother was one of the most sarcastic and quick-witted people I have ever known, no matter what hand life may have dealt her she was always ready to up the ante with humor. If you weren’t laughing and having a good time when you were in her presence it was most likely because you were the one who busted their ass or dared to take her on in a battle of wits. Thankfully her wonderful sense of humor was passed on to us because it really helped us through this difficult time; many tears were overshadowed by laughter.

She had plenty of reasons to be hateful and spiteful, yet she still maintained hope and love. She was afraid of the dark but had a personality that would light up a room. My mother didn't just want to know you, she wanted to embrace you, and she wanted you to feel as if you mattered. She loved sharing stories about her past; it meant the world to her when others took an interest in who she was, in what made her tick. She never had a problem comforting your tears, if anything she welcomed it, and never judged you because of them.


2017 was not a pleasant year for her. Shortly after it began she was diagnosed small cell lung cancer, which of course is aggressive and unfortunately for most a death sentence, which come to think of it pretty much confirms her theory that if it wasn’t for bad luck she wouldn’t have any luck at all. As she put it, she suffered from a bad case of the maloikies.
 
The last few months of her life was spent running back and forth to various doctors, extended hospital stays and fighting just to live her life as normal as possible when she did get the chance to be at home. Needless to say it wasn’t a “happy” new year for her at all. The chemo, which did give her a little more time with us, was destroying her body and making things very unpleasant for her. She couldn’t eat because of sores in her mouth, standing up was a chore in itself for her and with each passing day she was looking less and less like herself. Needless to say it wasn’t easy, but she stayed with it and never lost her smile. I remember when she would leave the chemo room she would pass by others who were in the same situation as herself, but instead of complaining about how bad she had it, she wished them all good luck and cheered them on.
 
Right before she was intubated for the last time, of course with the hopes of helping her breathe better, we were all in the hospital room with her for moral support and encouragement. We all got a brief moment with her to say a quick something then we had to leave the room to let the doctors do what they needed to do. My turn just happened to be last, and as I leaned in to let her know that I loved her and that everything would be alright, she grabbed my shirt and pulled me close and said, “Don’t let them do anything to me”. I knew what she meant, she wanted to make sure that everything that could possibly be done to keep her alive was done, she didn’t want the “plug pulled” if you will. My mother believed in fighting up until the bitter end, if it was up to her Terri Schiavo would still be here. She always said, “Where’s there’s life there’s hope”. Unfortunately those were the last words she ever spoke to me, and I hope and pray that she was happy with how I handled things from that point on.
 
Regrettably the disease finally ended her life on the 4th of June, and not because she gave up. She fought valiantly to the end with everything she had in her, but rather because when all was said and done it was just too much on her, both physically and mentally. June 7th was the day that my mother was laid to rest. The end of a chapter. Her soul was already flying high with the angels, and now her physical remains and her memory were honored. One of the greatest people I have ever known. Her light was extinguished before its time, leaving our world a little colder from this day forward. May she rest well in heaven and rejoice in the fact of just how loved she was.


As many of us know cancer is a horrible and devastating adversary, one without compassion and/or concern for whom it attacks/hurts, and if it doesn’t end your life itself, the treatment and/or complications from it will. Now of course it doesn’t always win, but it definitely does make its presence known and will make sure you respect it.
 
Cancer has a knack for attacking the good, the kind and the gentle, taking its time devouring their souls and leaving them battling beyond belief trying to conquer it. You get angry because you know there are individuals more deserving of this dreaded disease, of the pain and the suffering. You wonder how is it possible that they can keep going on living without seemingly a care in the world, when others are ravished and abused by this disease. That is at least how I felt during this horrific experience.
 
You cannot give into its evil, because then not only did it steal your loved one from you but it also beat you and changed you for the worse. As I said prior, I felt this way, the anger grew inside of me like a cancer (for lack of a better word), but I realized that my mother wouldn’t want me proceeding down that path, my thoughts wouldn’t make her proud, so I have been trying my best to change that. I would be lying to you if I told you it was easy, it’s not by any stretch of the imagination, but for my own well-being it is necessary so it must be done.
 
Our final journey with her was rough one, with a heartbreaking end, but I can honestly say that I am forever thankful that I was able to be her side during this whole ordeal. She is now buried under dirt for all eternity; her earthly remains like a seed that I pray by our actions bring fourth many beautiful flowers in her honor. We cannot let her passing be in vain, we must show the world what having her in our lives truly meant.
 
You were an amazing individual. A true testament of what it means to be a human being. You never saw the bad in people, only the good, even when you were hurt, taken advantage of or looked down upon as a result. You never swayed or faltered from who you were or let hate consume you, you’re a true inspiration. You still continued to move forward and spread love across this planet of ours. You made this normally dark and dreary world more beautiful, more precious and more of a reason to be part of it. I know a lot of people are in pain because you’re gone, but at least you are not anymore. You can rest easy knowing that your time here was not fruitless and that you truly were loved in every sense of the word.
 
When you lose your mother you lose all the stories you two shared, all the heartache you two embraced and all the trials you two have overcome. You’re losing the love, the comforts and the good times that now seem so far removed. You're losing more than just a person; you're losing a part of you, a part of your soul, a part of your being. She can never be replaced. She can never be thanked enough for all she did. Her passing left lots of regrets, lots of “what ifs” and of things left unsaid. Sleep eludes you as if you were playing a game of tag with it. You feel as lost as the kid on the back of the milk carton. The horror of the loss binds you like heavy chains, grips you tightly and unmercifully constricts when you try to escape, it is torture on another level. The day I lost my childhood is when my mother lost her life.   
 
Losing her was one of the hardest things I have ever had to endure; it tore me in two knowing that what once was is now nothing more than a memory, and unfortunately none new, just recollections of ones past. I know that someday the pain will subside, slowly fade into the distance like an image in the rearview mirror as you drive away, but she will never leave my heart or be forgotten.

My mother taught me that life, unlike her now still heart, never skips a beat, it continues on full steam ahead without any concern for casualties and mourners. Life is cruel and unfair, but we must do everything in our power to conquer it, to make it work for us instead of against us. She taught me how to survive and flourish and not just exist and concede. She taught me that every problem has a solution, might not always be the most convenient or the most enjoyable, but nevertheless it does. Her passing will haunt me for the rest of my days, but I will not let who she was and what she stood for go unrecognized. People will see her in me; they will appreciate who I am because of who she was. My goal is to honor her memory and to make her proud.    

Mom you can now sit back and rest while we, your children, take the reins and proudly steer your memory to greatness by our actions. The skies have cried every day since your departure, as if to show us that the heavens share our pain. I feel lost without her, but I am forever blessed for knowing her. Kathleen Sarah Canaley may you rest in peace. You will be forever loved and missed. The angel without wings that once walked the earth with the rest of us is now flying high with her own set of brand new wings.

I want to apologize for all the times I've said “she” (and her) in this piece, especially since my mother, Kathleen, would be driven completely nuts by it, because as she always said, “She has a name”.


This piece is dedicated to the memory of my incredible mother, without you this journey is going to be hard, but because of you it’s going to be possible. To all my siblings and their significant others, without you these past few months, and many years ahead, would be difficult, unforgiving and soul shattering to say the least.
    
MJM    

Sunday, October 30, 2016

“Walls, Emails and Smear Campaigns: Red and Blue Party Poopers”


I’m about to step onto my soapbox to discuss some things I personally can’t stand, some things I feel should be changed for the betterment of all involved and some things that just drive me plain old nuts for one reason or another as far as politics are concerned.

After hearing what I have to say you may be cheering me on as if I was Rocky in the big fight of my life or you may be looking to beat the crap out of me as if I was a piñata in the home of one of those illegal Mexican rapists that you hear Trump talk about all the time, but either way try to listen to what I have to say with an open mind, with all biases aside and any absurd undying political party allegiance tucked neatly away in the back of your mental sock drawer like a baggie of marijuana.

Forget cats and dogs, this is the truth of politics…

1. There is no such thing as a “government for the people”! Democrat or Republican it doesn’t matter; and to think otherwise is completely foolish and just like a porn star who was banged in the behind from some dude named Long Dong Silver, that kind of thinking will only leave you hurting in the end.

The only thing that matters to them is money and power; they will do anything to get it, even if that means making life hell for the rest of us.


2. Democrats and Republicans are Washington's version of the Bloods and Crips, only in shirts and ties.

Think about it! Both groups use colors to represent their respective hoods and group affiliation (red and blue), both groups scare people into joining them and their cause and both groups (character) assassinate all those who oppose them. See the connection? Democrats and Republicans are only out for themselves and no one else, if you're not with them then you're against them. Don’t believe me? Then try it out and see how well things play out for you.

Who do you think controls the illegal drug trade, the arms distribution and just about any other crime in their respective areas? I’ll give you a hint; it’s not the people that the cops are watching, they are only the pawns in this game of chess we’re playing in this country.

There's a political turf war going on and we're caught in the crossfire. Open your eyes, smarten up and get ready to duck and cover mutha fuggers! Forget Juggalos, the FBI needs to classify politicians as a gang! O.G. baby…original government.

3. Remember reading comic books when you were younger? When the villain would trick the people into believing that he/she was on their side, that they only wanted the best for them, then when the time was right he/she would reveal their evil plan to take over the world and leave everyone feeling stupid for trusting him/her? Well that politics in a nutshell.

They put on an Oscar worthy performance just long enough to get them in the door of their desired office, then once inside the mask comes off and their true identity is revealed.

They keep us fighting amongst ourselves and at odds with each other because the more chaotic our lives are and the more we feel as if it's us against the world and the less likely it is that we will come together as a cohesive unit and rise up against the corruption and/or the government.

You want change; well looking to a politician for it isn’t going to help because the only change they will give you is what’s left in your piggy bank after you pay all those taxes (aka protection racket) they so pleasantly force us to pay.

4. When it comes to abortion, a bunch of men sitting around discussing and/or attempting to regulate ‪it is freaking ridiculous! They should stick to things they are familiar with, like prostate exams and having sword fights with their buddies at the urinal for example.

Stop trying to tell women how to live their lives, or in some cases due to medical concerns not live their lives, all to avoid her not having an abortion. Do you realize how crazy that is? Unless you were there for the conception then keep your self-righteous opinions and judgment to yourself.


5. The separation of church and state. Keep your religion out of the office! I can only imagine the grimace on God’s face when His name is brought into all this madness.

I consider myself a Christian but God isn’t running for President, thus His feelings on the issues, as if any of these fools actually have the authority to speak for Him, don’t matter and only stand to make the candidates look like a bunch of bible thumpers who are planning on running the country in accordance to what their God believes and not what’s best for the people. We all know how dangerous that can be and if you don’t think so (like you’ve been living under a rock or something) then check out what happens to other countries around the world when religious zealots call the shots and run the show. Not such a pretty picture to say the least.

For anyone fuming over that statement and currently condemning me to hell as a result, I can guarantee you that if the religion was on the other foot, meaning that we were talking about a Muslim here, you would all be cheering me on and telling me to preach it. Such hypocrites!

6. Rock the vote and all that other crazy crap they tell us to make us believe that our vote truly matters (hanging chads anyone). Voting comes down to the lesser of two evils; basically the individual who you think would do less harm to our country than the other.

When it comes to this election one doesn’t need the Hubble Telescope to clearly see the “elephant” in the room, which is that Mr. Donald “Grab them by the pussy” Trump is not the Republicans first choice to “don” their organized-crime family, but unfortunately he is now their only choice so it’s either sink or swim with him. Regardless of his party affiliation the guy is a “jackass”, plain and simple, always have been and always will be. With that said stop acting all offended and appalled by him and his antics because we all knew what we were getting from jump, nothing all that surprising here. Now if all this came to light from someone like Mother Teresa then I would be shocked, but with him not so much.

I sometimes wonder if this whole Donald Trump thing is one of those hidden camera shows (Alright Ashton Kutcher where are you hiding?), as if he’s intentionally trying to get Hillary nominated and/or to make a mockery of the Republican Party. Maybe he’s a double agent who’s working for the Democrats? Nowadays you never know.

Before all you Republicans start seeing “red”, thinking I’m attacking your precious party and/or dogging your boy, the same goes for Hillary. She lies, cheats and steals! Well what politician doesn’t? Again, this is not a real shocker and not something that would keep me tuned in next week to see the conclusion of. Both of them should be strapped in a straitjacket and thrown into a padded room not running the country. They should stick to eating their checkers and let someone more qualified and less mentally grotesque, handle the office of the President of the USA.

Donald Trump's new slogan should be, "If it ain't white, it ain't alright" and Hilary Clinton’s entrance music should be “Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire”…just saying.
You don't need to be Monica Lewinsky to see what's "cumming", which is reality television at its finest and a regular Cirque Du Stupidity. This election is such a spectacle and full of more drama than a daytime soap opera that it’s not even funny. This whole debacle is making a joke of us and our country in the eyes of the rest of the world, which is not smart and/or safe by any means.

The bottom line is this. We’re all well aware of the candidates (not including the few vote-thrower-outers on the ballot) this election, so get rid of all the nonsense  and cast your so-called precious vote for the monster who you feel will scare you the least.

I know it’s asking a lot but please try to make an informed decision as to who you vote for and not just foolishly follow behind the elephant or donkey because that will only leave you with a steaming pile of hot animal dung on your face. Honestly people who vote for a particular political party exclusively, rather than the better candidate scare the poop out of me; it’s like Ray Charles playing Follow the Leader with a sacrificial virgin who has a date with a volcano god.

7. I think all politicians should have to go over and fight with the brave men and women of our armed forces every time they choose to deploy them, that way they will think twice about fighting over the wrong thing. There will be no vacations and no playing golf while our soldiers are fighting for our country, they can spend their term on the battlefield if necessary.

You also wouldn't have to worry about their safety while they were over there with our troops either, because they would have one of the best fighting forces in the world protecting them.


8. Republican (I would say Democratic too but there doesn’t seem to be any of those) radio/television talk show hosts remind me a lot of wrestling managers. I’m not talking about the wrestlers in singlets here, but rather the “What’cha gonna do brother when Hulkamania runs wild on you?” kind or wrestler. Their candidates can do no wrong and they talk them up as if they were the best thing since masturbation.

They talk more trash than a little bit about their candidate’s opponent, pretty much calling them everything but the kitchen sink. Every time I hear one I immediately picture Jimmy “The Mouth of the South” Hart and his bullhorn getting all up in someone’s face and starting shit. Let’s get ready to RUMBLE!

These people I actually find more humorous than anything else because I don’t know if they really believe the crap they are spewing through their lips or if they understand it’s all garbage and are just willing to do/say anything and everything to fight for their parties reputation and street cred, I truthfully think it’s the latter.

9. Politicians never apologize for anything, especially during their campaign trail, it's always so-and-so did it too as if that somehow justifies their misdeed and wrongdoings. Didn't we have enough of that crap as kids? Didn’t our parents tell us not to worry about what they did, and ask us if they jumped off a bridge would we jump too? So then why is it acceptable for politicians?

In the famous words of the great poet Porky Pig, “Th…th…th…that’s all folks”!

This election is like a bitter custody battle between two dysfunctional and abusive parents, no matter who wins we’re all screwed and destined to have our country grow up to be a deadbeat, a thief and just an overall piece of shit.

Now relax all you crazies with your undying political party allegiance, and know that I personally think that all, which means both Democrats and Republicans, are pieces of garbage and only out for the party they choose to align themselves with and no good whatsoever. Some might say that’s a little harsh, well I say it’s right on the money and totally justified. Maybe one day that will all change, a politician(s) will rise from the ashes like a phoenix and prove to me, and the rest of the world that they’re not all alike, but until that day comes I’m sticking to my guns and remaining and cynical as ever when it comes to these individuals.

When talking politics with some people I wonder if "thinking" is their second language. The mentality and actions of some of these mindless zombies leaves me scratching my head in utter confusion and worried about the future we are leaving for our children.

I’m Michael Mele, and I approve this message!

MJM

Thursday, June 9, 2016

“Buzz Kill: Looking at Life through a Pair of Beer Goggles”


We are going to be discussing addicts, alcoholics in particular, and not in an adorable Disney style fairytale kind of way either, but more of a “Dateline: To Catch an Alcoholic” kind of way. Needless to say it’s going to get a little messy in here and some feelings are bound to be hurt.

With that said, if you don’t currently have a problem with the magic elixir that can take cares away like Tylenol does headaches, then feel free to crack one open and sit back and enjoy. However, if you suffer from what I like to call “Beauty and the Beast” syndrome (a beauty of a person when your tank is on empty, but once full you become a beast, all thanks to the newly found liquid courage the great and powerful Oz. [ounces of alcohol that is] has granted you) or regardless of whether you’re sober or drunk you’re a dick, then maybe you should drink a cup of coffee and chill, because a sober dick is a lot easier to tolerate than a drunk dick any day.

Many American families are infested with them as if they were roaches, but unfortunately they don’t disappear when the lights come on or go “crunch” under your feet. The Hughes Brothers’ movie, “Menace to Society” could have very well been written about them. Am I being unfair to the alcoholic, ask anyone who has had to endure their crazy antics and dysfunctional behavior how they feel about the whole situation and you’ll have your answer.

You have those who do nothing more than cry in their beer, stay to themselves and keep the Budweiser’s Clydesdales galloping all the way to the bank, and for the most part harmless and not confrontational. Although they have a twin, an annoying doppelganger if you will, and those are the individuals who deserve a swift kick in the ass and who this piece is dedicated to. 

They don’t care who they hurt in the process, and the only twelve steps they are willing to follow are only the ones that lead to more alcohol. 

For the record, I don’t believe that all alcoholics are monsters, things that go bump in the night if you will, but unfortunately there are many who belong in a padded cell. They don’t care about anything or anyone, all they’re concern with is where their next drink is coming from and how soon can they get it, that’s the grim reality of it.

“It’s a disease! They have no control over it!”…

We classify many different conditions and addictions as diseases in this country, which I can only assume is to make people feel better about overindulging, physically, mentally and of course financially. This rule however seems to only apply to vices that are legal and that are making sizeable donations (aka taxes) to the pockets of good old Uncle Sam. One of the reasons marijuana isn’t legal is because people can easily grow it themselves, thus cutting out the middleman and avoid paying taxes on it, and we all know that our government doesn’t like it when they (undeservingly) don’t get their fair share of the pie.

Regardless how many “doctors” say it is. Doctors are not gods, they are fallible and not without personal bias, if they weren’t there would be no need for a second opinion. When it comes to doctors the good guys don’t always wear white, the stereotypical drug dealer has been replaced by a man in a white coat armed with a pen and a prescription pad and the crack house, replaced by the pharmacy. Prescription pill epidemic anyone? Medicine is a business and doctors are businessmen, you’d be wise to remember that.

I know that not all doctors are irresponsibly writing prescriptions and/or consciously contributing to the demise of our civilization, however, there are a good percentage of them who are and I tell you this to hopefully open your eyes to what’s really going on in this world of ours. The X-Files said it best, “The truth is out there”!

If alcoholism is indeed a disease, shouldn't the alcoholic who is pulled over for drinking and driving be taken away in an ambulance instead of a cop car, brought to a hospital instead of a jail? Society's double standard?

It is a conscious decision made from a sound mind, not a birth defect or a little beer bottle sitting on their shoulder talking them into getting down with the drink. We all have the propensity to be addicted to something, we like something we want more of it, that’s how it is. So I guess we’re all diseased, right? Now off course these addictions vary from person to person, some can partake in their personal pleasures every now and then without letting them overtake their lives, while others just can’t let go of the dragon and do everything in their power to continuously peruse it.

The whole “disease” mentality is a way for alcoholics (and sympathizers) to justify their unhealthy behavior and as a means to help family/friends keep the facade intact of a loving and caring family member/friend, because it’s more comfortable to believe that it’s not their loved ones performing these destructive acts but rather the disease making them do it. We are lead to believe from a very young age that anyone born under our family crest loves us unconditionally and only have our best interests at heart, but “family” is only a word and not a contract. Because someone shares our bloodline doesn’t mean that they share our commitment and feelings towards one and another. That may sound dark and bleak, but it’s reality whether we want to accept it or not.

Classifying it as such is a slap in the face to those who are truly battling legitimate diseases, in the same way that an individual who never served this great country of ours, but claimed to, only for the praise and accolades such a position would warrant, would.

"Forget alcoholism, the real dreaded disease that is sweeping the nation is gulliblism, it's where the poor unfortunate victims believe everything that they are told without question!"



“Alcoholics and other drug addicts aren’t one in the same. You’re comparing Apples to oranges here!”…

You’re an alcoholic you’re sick, overcome by a dreadful disease that controls you as if you were Achmed and it Jeff Dunham. Alternatively though, if your preferred poison happens to be that of an illegal street drug you’re considered a no-good addict, plain and simple. There are no heroinaholics! 

Some people will lead you to believe that an addiction is an addiction, and that one is not treated any differently than another, but I can guarantee that if you ask someone who hits the crack pipe instead of sips from a can for a good time how they are treated and viewed by the masses you will get the real story.

When you’re an alcoholic you go to AA, but at the same time if you’re an addict of any other drug the only letters you see are DEA. An alcoholic gets off with a slap on the wrist and a brief stint in rehab, the addict gets thrown in the joint and is traded like a baseball card for packs of cigarettes. You’ll never see the property values drop because there’s a bar close by, but a crack house on the other hand, you might as well be living in the projects. 

I’m not trying to proudly waive the banner of illegal street drugs as an overzealous fanatic who is cheering for their favorite sports team as they go in for the win, would, nor am I saying that I think they should be legalized, I just don’t see why we treat alcoholics differently than any other addict in this country. Are alcoholics as bad as other drug addicts, absolutely!

“You don’t understand, they’ve had a rough life. They’re tortured souls”…

There are many out there who use alcohol as a means of coping, a way to escape from some terrible wrong and/or personal hardship that life has bestowed upon them, and to them I say welcome to the human race! You would be hard pressed to find one individual out there who didn’t experience their fair share of heartache and sorrow throughout their lifetime, but not everyone runs to their local liquor store/bar when the going gets tough and tries to drown their pain. You will never find solace in an empty bottle, just a temporary fix, and if anything your predicament will only get worse.

I hear the word, “selfish” thrown around a lot when discussing the suicidal, but the truth of the matter is that the word is more fitting when talking about alcoholics. When someone feels lonely and abandoned, which is the case with many suicidal people, who exactly are they being selfish to; at least that’s how they see it. Now a drunk on the other hand they knowingly, with a sound mind, decide to partake in a drug that not only harms themselves but also those around them. Whatever the reason, they feel their needs out weight the needs of the many, including those of their so-called loved ones.

There are healthier and less destructive ways to overcome the travesties we have faced. I’m not trying to sound heartless or uncompassionate to their plights, but we’ve all have been there, and most of us have survived to see another day without the aid of alcohol.




“What? You mean we should be responsible for our own actions and stop blaming them on something else? That’s sacrilegious and totally not how we do things here. Get out of here you witch!”… 

   
To paraphrase the great poet Shaggy (Mr. Boombastic if you’re nasty), “It wasn’t them”…or at least that’s what they want you to believe. We need an exorcism, they are all possessed by an evil alcoholic spirit…a spirit they bought from the liquor store nonetheless.

We treat alcoholics as if they are the victims, but they are far from it. They are not the victim, we are. We need to stop having pity on the abuser. We wouldn’t have sympathy for the man who beat his wife, so why do we for the people who destroy the lives of many around them and all those in their destructive paths?  This fact amazes and leaves me scratching my head in utter confusion. They are the aggressors, the ones behind a good portion of the unnecessary madness that covers this country like a tent around the home with termites, yet we are told that we should have pity on them and turn the other cheek to their wrong-doings.

We are too soft, we coddle those who don’t deserve it and if there’s money to be made, more than willing to look the other way and act like we didn’t see anything at all. 

I can guarantee that there are some who are reading this that think I’m crazy, that having a drink or two isn’t a bad thing, and to them I say you are correct. The problem isn’t the alcohol but rather the alcoholic. I’m sure this next statement is going to get me into hot water, but it’s the same thing when it comes to guns, it’s not the gun that’s the problem it’s the person behind the trigger that is.

“Hello! May I HELP you?”…

I’m all for someone getting help, but what I don’t understand is why they want to be anonymous while they are getting it? While they are out getting their drunk on and running amok they are as loud and obnoxious as can be. One would think they would be happy to let the world know they are getting help, that's a good thing, and get their drunk on in private, because that's embarrassing. 

You want to do something about being out of shape you go to a “public” gym and workout, or go to a “public” park and go for a run or even to a “public” restaurant and order a salad while everyone else is pigging out on pizza. You’re proud to show people that you’re concerned about your health and wellbeing. You want to stop drinking you go a private meeting, which is closed off to the public and totally secret, like you’re in the mob. I’m not trying to knock anyone for getting help with a drinking problem; I just don’t understand why some people feel shameful about it, but if it works for them then that is all that matters.

I can’t stand those pretend quitters though, the ones who only say it because it’s the right thing to say and/or because they are looking for that, “awww poor alcoholic” pseudo-love crap. Telling someone that you want to go to rehab/detox when you have a load on, is the same thing as telling someone you’re worried about your heart as you’re scarfing down a Big Mac, large fries and a diet soda…because you’re watching your weight. Stop the madness, if you don’t want help and plan on drinking until the day you die, man up and hit the bricks, never to return. Do something worthwhile for those who are unfortunately (dis)graced by your presence, it’s the least you could do. You already, “screwed the hooch (pooch)” with your life, don’t make the same mistake with someone else’s.

I'm not saying that alcoholism isn't difficult to overcome, but it's possible and for those who have, they should be commended and admired for their strength and the courage it took to conquer their demons, very admirable.

The recovering alcoholic is fine; it’s the repeat offenders we don’t like.

“How do you know what it’s like? You’re not an alcoholic!”…

What makes me an expert on the topic, how long do you have? I’m just kidding; I’ll give you the condensed version, which is a privilege I was never awarded when I was forced to sit through all those inane ramblings by some intoxicated booze hound when I was a child.

I have almost forty years of experience dealing with the walking drunks, both as close family and family friends who seem to come free with the purchase of every case of beer, and unlike my fathers (yes that is correct, plural), they never left. I drink, and yes I have my favorites, but I do so in moderation and continue to maintain a functional life…even with the alcoholic gene in my DNA.

I’ve heard all the excuses, blaming everyone and everything (except for themselves of course) on why it is that they drink like a fish. I’ve witnessed the unapologetic thievery, the ridiculous brawls and the complete lack of respect for all involved. When the well ran dry these people drank just about anything that contained alcohol, mouthwash, cold medicine and even aftershave, trust me I’ve seen it firsthand. I’ve had occasions, regardless of the setting, ruined by their unremorseful antics. These people made my life very unsettling, if it was a stomach it would have been upset and they would have been the crippling pains that kept me on the toilet heave-hoing and praying to God that it would all end soon. Let’s just say that living with them has been anything but a happy hour.

I could go on and on, but you get the picture. I’ve been there, done that and not ever wanting to go back. 




“Last call!’…

The whole mindset around alcoholism is completely ridiculous and utterly absurd. People really need to step back, remove their feelings from the situation, and reassess the whole thing. It’s hard to see clearly when your eyes are full of tears. 

We all know that partaking in alcohol can result in a good time, and at the risk of sounding cliché and/or like one of those afterschool specials, do it responsibly and plan accordingly if you know it’s going to be flowing freely like a fire hydrant on a hot day on a city street. When it becomes a problem, you become a problem, and that’s not cool.

Final thought; the alcoholic is the person, not some uncontrollable disease that some poor unfortunate individual comes down with and/or is born with, and when dealing with an alcoholic loved one, your love for them is all in vain if it’s not tough.

“I love you man!”…

MJM

Monday, March 14, 2016

"Yo! MJMTV Raps: DIRTY BLACK


“Holy shit on a shingle, Batman”! Guess what, party people? I have a very special guest up in my crib today. The up-and-coming rapper from the Bronx, which is in NY (better recognize), has stopped by The Insane Asylum to share a little bit about himself with you. Sit back, pop open a cold one (pour some out for a dead homie if necessary), and get to know the one and only DIRTY BLACK.

Let the party begin…  

1. The streets, your lady or your bitch?

DIRTY BLACK: I left the street life alone. I'm an ex-drug dealer. I would pick my lady because she would be there to hold me down, or at least I would like to think that. As far as a bitch well she would be just that, there for me to fuck when I’m ready to.

2. What would it take for you to collaborate with Vanilla Ice?

DIRTY BLACK: A music video for the song guaranteed, and of course 5-10 thousand dollars (Ice,Ice Baby)!

3. Your music, from experience or from Hollywood? 

DIRTY BLACK: My music is definitely inspired by my real life experiences; there are no fabrications in my material. I don't look at Hollywood movies or the Hollywood lifestyle to motivate my song writing.

4. Do you sing in the shower or rap?

DIRTY BLACK: I think of new song ideas when I'm in the shower, new hooks, new bars, etc. Singing is out of the question; instead of waking up the dead I would probably kill the living. I won't be performing at karaoke night any time soon.

5. Where do you draw inspiration from for your music?

DIRTY BLACK: My life, other people's lives, the news, the media. I draw inspiration from other people's music in general. I love all kinds of music.

6. If you could have beef with any rapper out there, who would it be?

DIRTY BLACK: I would have to say Kendrick Lamar. I mean he did take a cheap shot at my city, New York, in the past. I had a diss record killing him but some of the people on my team asked me not to put it out. They were telling me from a business stand point that California is a huge market and that I need the fine people of California to support DIRTY BLACK. I didn't want them to hate me.

7. What do you think of the current state of rap music? 

DIRTY BLACK: It's watered down. The rap industry needs an artist like me, a real lyrist that's not coming with that bubble gum gimmick bullshit.

8. Women, bitches and hoes or ladies and lovelies?

DIRTY BLACK: Women are very important to the world, they play a major part. Bitches and hoes are just no good. Gold diggers are always looking for a come up, groupies too, things of that nature. Ladies and lovelies are decent women who respect themselves; they don't act like bitches and hoes, so I respect them too.

9. East Coast, West Coast or somewhere in between? 

DIRTY BLACK: I'm from the east coast, New York. I love the west coast, it’s beautiful out there. I do plan on moving but I'm not sure where, so right now it's up in the air as far as where I'm going to be living.

10. Who do you look up to musically?

DIRTY BLACK: KRS-ONE, Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, 2PAC, Doug E. Fresh, Slick Rick, Kool G Rap, NAS, Mobb Deep, Kurtis Blow, Wu Tang Clan, Redman, Michael Jackson, Prince, James Brown and the list goes on and on.  

11. 2 Pac, dead or alive?

DIRTY BLACK: To everybody out there who thinks that 2PAC is alive. Please let that man R.I.P. I saw the autopsy tape with my own eyes a month after he died, the actual tape and not something that everyone saw on a documentary. A friend of mine that used to work for XXL magazine got a hold of the tape, and I watched it at his house. 2PAC's mother, Afeni Shakur said that she "cremated" him, so 2Pac is dead, unfortunately.

12. Are you down with OPP?

DIRTY BLACK: When I was younger I would have said YES, but I'm a little older now and my main focus is handling my business so NO! I'm not down with O.P.P. I'm no longer indulging in casual sex.

13. The "N word", out of place in rap music or absolutely fitting? 

DIRTY BLACK: A lot of people do get offended by the "N" word, but for me and millions of people from the slums all over the world, we grew up using the word in our everyday vocabulary. It's hard to ask someone to stop using a word that they have been using for most of their life. That's why you hear it in a lot of rap music, because those artists come from those ghettos that I'm talking about. As rap artists we are kind of like ghetto news reporters, and using the "N" word is a part of the dialect that we use.

14. Do you rap for the love of the game or with the hopes of breaking the bank? 

DIRTY BLACK: I would have to say a little bit of both. My music means everything to me, and yes I want to have major commercial success, what artist doesn't. I'm here to make a difference and change lives but I can't do those things without success.

15. When did you first discover your passion for rap?

DIRTY BLACK: I fell in love with rap and hip hop when my brother and his friend used to play RUN DMC, Doug E. Fresh, KRS ONE, and even before that when my pops used to play Kool & the Gang. I used to be a little kid hanging with my cousin and some of his friends in different studios. They are the ones that made me feel that I could rap. I used to just write verses, but then I started writing songs. It was hard for me because I was so used to only writing verses, so I had to make the transition.

16. Yo' Mama! How's your relationship with her, 2 Pac or Eminem (pre-rehab)?

DIRTY BLACK: My relationship with my mother is great, even though we don't see eye to eye all the time. When I was on the streets selling drugs she didn't approve, and she let me know it. She always believed in me. She didn't smoke cigarettes or use drugs. She wasn't in jail or anything like that. She was just a hard worker that believed in having something. She was always there for me and I loved that.

17. How would you classify your music?

DIRTY BLACK: My music is outstanding, it speaks for itself. My new mixtape (“THE GAME CHANGER”, coming real soon!), that will be coming out soon, sounds like an album. Sometimes I make songs from my life experiences and sometimes I make songs that people want to hear. My songs are art that everybody from every walk of life can or should be able to relate to.

18. What's your part in the overall music making process?

DIRTY BLACK: I write my own songs, I don't use songwriters or ghostwriters. I don't get down like that. If you heard me spit it you can bet your life I wrote it. I'm very picky when it comes to my beats. When I'm with a producer listening to beats sometimes I hear something that I like right away, but most of the time it's a long process. I don't make beats myself, I just write my songs.

19. Racism in America, your thoughts? 

DIRTY BLACK: It's crazy that it’s 2016 and we are still dealing with racism and hate, instead of everybody trying to make this world a better place collectively. Why not try to make money with me or do something positive together instead of having hate towards me because of the color of my skin? Everything is subject to change, people need to keep that in mind.

20. Please tell us there's no Stanky Leg, Crank That or any of that other random nonsense in your future? 

DIRTY BLACK: No! I'm not into making gimmicky songs. Lyrically I hold myself to a higher standard. You will hear some club bangers and some party songs, but you won't hear about DIRTY BLACK making a new dance because that's not what I do. Whoever’s out there doing that, to each their own, but I do what works for me.

21. How'd you come up with the name DIRTY BLACK?

DIRTY BLACK: A lot of people don't know this but I didn't come up with the name "DIRTY BLACK ". My cousin and one of my friends started calling me that because my nickname was "BLACK" and I used to always carry a gun. When I would run into them they would want me to chill and hang out, but I used to tell them I can't because I was dirty, meaning I was carrying a gun. So after 2 or 3 months of not hanging with me they started calling me "DIRTY BLACK ". It had nothing to do with music; hell I wasn't even doing music at the time.

That’s all she wrote…

Well there you have it, Mr. BLACK, or DIRTY BLACK if you’re nasty, letting you know exactly how it is. Make sure to show him some love and appreciation for his time here with us. 

Please forgive my attempt at being street, because honestly the only thing I know about the streets comes from the one named Sesame! The only time I was ever riding dirty was when I was stuck in traffic and shit myself after a questionable lunch from the gas station. 

MJM


Email: teamdirtyblack@gmail.com



Tuesday, February 16, 2016

“Stop, Drop and Hop or Come in and Stay a While?”


There are two kinds of people when it comes to using the crapper, and I’m not talking about the public one here, because hopefully no one uses those cesspools unless absolutely necessary. I’m talking about your own personal porcelain potty.

You have the individuals who are in and out with a quickness like Superman in a phone booth at the first sign of trouble, then you have those who set up shop and make it a home away from home within a home. I myself am the latter, and damn proud of it.

Now some may scratch their heads in confusion and ask why one would purposely stay firmly planted on the pot while being surrounded by their own stank, unless of course they were having tummy troubles and/or a professional masturbator. Well my reason is simple; I prefer to deal with the shit that’s inside the door instead of the shit that’s on the other side of the door. By that I don’t mean that I have a poorly trained pet that leaves turd nuggets all over my house like landmines, but rather people who are so annoying they could make Jesus (and I don’t mean the gardener) ask for a do-over on that whole dying on the cross for our sins thingy.

You want to be a super pooper like me? Well listen closely because I’m about to tell you how it’s done.

There are secrets to surviving the dreaded gas chamber. Certain things one could do to make the overall experience really not all that bad, believe it or not, actually rather pleasant. Some of these steps may take time to master, but trust me in the end it’ll be completely worth it and you’ll be a much happier person in the long run as a result of it.

Here’s the first step, and this may not be all that easy for those of you with pancake asses, but for the the rest of you who are fortunate enough to have junk in your trunk this’ll be no problem whatsoever. Plug the hole! Don’t get it twisted; the hole I’m talking about plugging here is not the one to your backdoor, but the one to the seat of the bowl you’re doing your business on.

This may require some wobbling as if you were a Weeble and/or possibly even some tushy touching, so make sure to keep some Purell readily available just in case. Wedge those buns in there tightly, like you were stuffing a Thanksgiving turkey. That septic stream should see nothing more than the dark side of your moon.

Why do this you may ask? The answer is simple; it’s to avoid any raunchiness from escaping the bowl. That way regardless of how long you plan on visiting, you can do so without aggravating your nostrils and/or taste buds if you happen to be one of those extremely ripe bitches where your aroma is so thick you could taste is.

As a backup, hanging a car air freshener from the doorknob will definitely help in the case of a ventilation emergency. Sure it won’t mask the whole smell, but a mixture of pine trees or new car and crap is still better than just plain old crap, just saying.


Step number two, which coincidentally involves taking a number two, funny how that worked out.

Don’t be too quick to flush your friend. The reason being of course is because most people associate the flush with the last step in the pooping process, and if you’re not out the door shortly after they come banging like they were the police. Let your new buddy hang around for a bit. Let him enjoy his freedom from the bowels before being washed away to his eternal resting place.

Nothing makes others feel the need to use the bathroom more then the sound of that door closing. I believe it’s a mental thing, that or a pain in the ass thing, and I’m not taking about hemorrhoids. They’re as fine as can be without a care in the world, completely void of any bladder and/or anus waste, at least until they notice the threshold to the toilet blocked off.

That’s why saving the flush for the final act, and not a second before, is imperative and not to be passed over. Doing so will help you avoid any unnecessary headaches while you’re trying to relax.    

The last step, which is just as important as the previous two and should not to be taken lightly, is to bring a lunch or at least a snack in with you. You’re going to be away from the outside world for quite some time, and you wouldn’t want to pass out from hunger and end up face down, ass up on the bathroom floor. Been there, done that, and it wasn’t a pretty picture.

I would also highly recommend carrying prepackage noms here, because you wouldn’t want poop particles on your food, ummm grodie to say the least.

Aside from edibles, bring in things to keep you occupied while you’re lavatory lounging. Here are some suggestions. Maybe take up needlepoint, start playing a portable gaming system and/or if you’re so inclined, bring in that car engine that you’ve been rebuilding.

There’s nothing like reading a good book on the toilet, and if you’re a writer, all you need is a pen because any adequately stocked bathroom is going to have plenty of paper. What about arts and crafts, if that’s your thing feel free to get down with some finger painting, just please wash your hands when you’re done.

For the record, on cold days there is absolutely nothing wrong with brining a blanket or space heater in with you, if anything you’d be wise to let the heater run for a bit before doing your duty (huh huh) to avoid cold seat shock.

Let me put it this way, you’ll be hard-pressed to find something of mine that doesn’t have more fecal matter on it than Kanye West's teeth, but I don’t sweat it at all because there’s always soap.

Remember with great power comes great responsibility, so use these skills I taught you wisely and don’t abuse them. For example if you’re a beginner, or a young sprout with tiny little poops, then I would suggest playing it safe and not risking it. Be like SEAL Team Six, get in and out before anyone knows you’re there, making sure to bury your own stinky little brown turd (aka Bin Laden) at sea in the process, otherwise the operation would be considered an epic fail.


Here’s what I had to deal with, and ultimately why I say what I do.

Growing up we had many visitors who felt compelled to use their toilet time to smoke a cigarette, drink a cup of coffee and drop a deuce, so you could only imagine the funk that they left behind.

With that said, back then I was a hit it and quit it kind of fella when it came to using the facilities. I wasn’t about to let myself ferment in that toxic concoction of shit, smoke and coffee.

As time progressed, circumstances changed and I was better able to manage the shitter to shitee relationships, which allowed me slow down and enjoy my time in the inside outhouse. Give it time, you’ll get there too.

There you have it, the “How to” survival guide to making the best of a shitty situation and getting the most out of your bathroom time. They don’t call it the “rest”room for nothing.

MJM 

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

“When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Go Crying?”


I'm sick and tired of hearing all this crap from Cam Newton! He’s trying to justify his actions in regards to how he handled things during the post-game press conference for Superbowl 50. We won’t even touch on how he was acting on the field during the big game, that’s for another time.

Showed up to interview with a chip on his shoulder and acted very unprofessional. Wouldn’t answer questions and left shortly after arriving, without even so much as a whisper as to why. After watching him storm off like a toddler who just got told he couldn’t have any ice cream, it was pretty evident as to why he did what he did.

He is an idiot, plain and simple. Obviously no one likes to lose, but trying to blame his behavior on the fact that he did just that is completely ridiculous and utterly insane. We are not talking about kids on the playground here; we are talking about pro athletes who do this for a living. 

He acts as if he is only representing himself, but clearly he is not. He represents the Carolina Panthers organization and the National Football League (NFL) and gets paid extremely well to do so. Giving interviews, whether after a loss or a win, is all part of the job, don't believe me just ask Marshawn Lynch of Seattle Seahawks fame.

Now if he, and many more I suspect, would rather not give interviews then they should take a sizable pay cut and not be eligible for the captain position of their respective teams. With any job you need to earn your money and title, it’s not just handed to you because you perform one aspect of your overall responsibilities at a higher level than most. This is the case with the majority of jobs out there, and football should be no different.

He needs to grow up and act like a professional and a positive role model to all those kids who look up to him. It takes more than giving a kid the ball when you score a touchdown to make you something to write home about. I’m not trying to discount the gesture, but in all reality that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Considering that Superman is faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive and able to leap tall building in a single bound, I’m sure he can survive a loss. Trust me, the Panthers will have another shot at the big game in the years to come, there’s no doubt about that. Now with that said, it’s time to be a man and stop acting like an overgrown spoiled child.

My feelings have nothing to do with the team he plays for and/or my undying allegiance to any other team, so fanboys please stand down. I believe for the money these players are paid, they should be more than happy to do what is asked of them, especially when it comes to the fans, which is absolutely who these interviews are for. I know it was the Superbowl, but there’s still no excuse for how things unfolded on his behalf.

Cam Newton…the man, the myth, the crybaby? Only time will tell.

Also, this is not a black and white thing; this is a wrong and right thing. People would still feel the same way they do towards Newton’s actions even if he happened to be white. So please stop with all that nonsense.

MJM