Friday, May 29, 2009

Not So Friendly Fire

I don’t want to put it like this but…another NY police officer fatally shot by one of his own. “The slain officer, Omar J. Edwards, 25, who was assigned to patrol housing projects and was wearing plain clothes, was shot in the arm and chest after a team of three other plainclothes officers in a car saw him chasing a man on East 125th Street between First and Second Avenues with his gun drawn” , states Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly.
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Alright, Im about to map out some important details and we are going to break this occurrence on down.
-Officer Edwards was chasing a man, which usually indicates one has been done wrong by the person they are chasing, except extreme cases of senseless violence. The man he was chasing had broken his driver side car window and was rummaging through his car.
-Three officers got out of their vehicle and confronted Edwards (off duty officer), according to the NYTimes article.
-Two of the six shots fired solely by Andrew Dunton hit Edwards: one in the arm and one in the chest, as stated above.

Lets extrapolate from what we know. If there are three officers and two men running, it should be relatively easy for them to apprehend both. If they did obtain both men, which appears to be the case as the potential thief has been questioned as well, I find it hard to believe Edwards didn’t tell them that he was an off-duty officer. Also why did all three officers confront Edwards, as if he was the only person involved, its not logical and really doesn’t even sound symmetrical. They did give the details in chronological order but if all three approached Edwards how did capture the other man…did he wait around? I find this last detail to be the most intriguing, why did Officer Dunton fire SIX shots and the other two officers did not fire a single shot. These officers are trained and all it takes is one shot to impale someone. It is also hard to imagine him in a great deal of danger, if none of his fellow officers fired a shot but he had time to fire six.

I don’t know the up to the second latest but this investigation should yield some results, fast. The motives and/or details don’t line up to me and I’m sure that I am not the only one. I am not a cynic nor am I a conspiracy theorist, but Edwards was black, and if you recall, 25 yrs old. Officer Andrew Dunton is…you know it…white. We shall see how the details iron out but these NYPD officers have got to get better at diagnosing situations. I understand the vastly meticulous and highly pressurized nature of the job, but this one seems like a stretch. Particularly if they are labeling this an accident, as Mayor Bloomberg reassures "The only thing that can come out of this is to improve procedures so perhaps it doesn’t happen again," the mayor said. "We all know policing is a dangerous job and accidents happen when people have guns in their hands, even legal guns in this case which they are authorized and trained to use." I wholeheartedly agree with that first sentence if it turns out to be accidental. But im wincing and scrunching my face right now and for good reason.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Work Hard for the Money

Shout out to my buddy Jules for the suggestion, first and most eminently. The issue of paying children to attend and excel in school (in core classes) is apparently brewing throughout the nation as some specific urban locations in cities such as Chicago, Washington D.C., and New York have already instituted such a program. The bill is still in the rudimentary stage as it is currently on the table for Detroit.

I thought i heard of this in Atlanta before but maybe not. The article i read cited a particular instance in New York where a school has risen from the doldrums to achieve laudable results due to students receiving pay. The language on the bill states that students could earn up to $2000. I think i am 40/60 (good/bad)on this, on the surface this seems like a good idea but i think that it wouldn't benefit that many in the long run. Some students will pick up their performance to attain money, some probably will not, and some may cheat; but that's not the measuring stick. I believe that children should understand the concept of bettering yourself, often times that doesn't directly offer you a reward. As I channel my inner psychologist, i think that this will induce children to associate school/learning with money, but what will happen when/if they head off to college and the tables are reversed as they have to pay to attend school. Will they then feel like it is not worth it? I also think you can't make everything about money, because their are other things kids can do to obtain money, especially as they live out their teenage years. If your motivation is primarily the money then this offer won't hold your attention. I do understand that some would lose interest regardless but i think it sets the wrong idea.

More importantly the issue of funding this is stifling, in D.C. the program costs $2.7 million a year. For a city like Detroit struggling with a deficit it does not seem wise (although they did mention funding from elsewhere). I would have to contend that families need to encourage their children to try their best and your reward comes down the line, when you get accepted into whatever school you want or you land that job/internship. Instant gratification is another problem we often have but that's a topic for another day.

However as i stated earlier i do not think it is all bad. I think for some this will work and serve as sufficient motivation. I also understand the notion of getting results no matter how you get them, I wrote a blog a while back that talked about motivation coming in many forms. Also perhaps this will help some households that deal with money issues by allowing even the smallest of kids to contribute. As most of the 'Sofa knows i am all about the mindset though, you can't let the situation determine your mindset, you have to have the right mindset no matter the situation.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Wallington Ink.

This is a video of me and one of my close partners who operates his own branding company M-Consulting, and very effectively might i add. I would plug him but his stuff is all over the video anyway. If you have ever heard the phrase "steel sharpens steel" then this is what it looks like (otherwise read the Bible). For those that are unfamiliar with the Wallington Ink. brand, this is your opportunity to get acquainted in a subtle way.
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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Joe Budden vs. Method Man?

This is a couple of days after the fact however i am going to outline and dissect a one sided quarrel between Method Man and Joe Budden. I say one-sided because there is really only a problem on one end.

For those currently unaware Joe Budden has a vlog or video blog, which he calls Joe Budden TV. VIBE Magazine recently released a "Best Rapper Ever" bracket done NCAA style and Joe was unhappy with the bracket's details and many of its participants, he was pegged a #32 seed, the lowest seed in the bracket. Amidst his displeasure he happened to say this about Method Man, "Love Method Man to death, he's number NINE! You mean to tell me if Method Man was standing in front of my face right this second and we had to RAP, back and forth that Method Man would be the victor, against me!". Additionally he stated how he was better than half the list, as any rapper would. A lot of the hip hop fans were debating with Budden through Twitter and the debate grew larger.
The radio station talked to Budden about it and he clarified further Joe Budden Pt.1, Joe Budden Pt.2. No disrespectful words were said, Budden simply feels that in his craft he can rap better than Method Man.

Sand passes through the hour glass and Method Man winds up on the radio: Meth's Interview. Meth is clearly perturbed, agitated, and disgruntled. However, for what? A rapper can't feel like he raps better than you?

Here is where I come in. This matriculates and preserves the ignorant mindset that rappers have, everyone is so quick to get offended by the words of their peers. Also Meth mentions how his people were calling him in an uproar and boisterous hoopla, this is also a problem. Rappers will forever have posse's, and these are the people who pump rappers up to ignorance. Meth is dang near 40 and still letting his friends pressure him into foolishness! Meth is suppose to be a well matured man, been rapping for over 13 years, has a family and kids, well over 30 probably closer to 40, and you get your panties in a bunch because another rapper said they can rap better than you!? He was so "offended" he starts talking reckless violence, stating "I got people that live in his building...we can make it lyrical or physical or whatever!" Then he says something about don't put him in my face (as if that would undoubtedly lead to violence). His friends Redman and Busta Rhymes have chimed in, all because a dude said he was better than you and he would cut your head off in a battle? The machismo in hip hop has got to go. Get on the mic and prove it if you feel that strongly about it or sit down, shut up, and move on with your life. This is totally uncalled for. I have lost all respect for Method Man and Busta Rhymes (although this isn't about him, lol).

If Ray Allen said im a better basketball player than LeBron and i would punish him in a one on one game, LeBron would probably say i disagree but that's his opinion, i can guarantee you it wouldn't get violent. Anyone indulged in a particular craft is supposed to feel like they are the best if you don't then you shouldn't be in the arena. As you can tell i was quite cajoled by this ordeal. When can we finally mature? I need to know, not now, but right now.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Blame It

I thought this was pretty funny, a spoof of Jamie Foxx's "Blame It" performed by our president (not for real, for real). Anyhow watch him detail the state of the nation while two-stepping with his D.C. peers.

For a Klondike Bar...

I know its kinda small but he ask the contestants "I'd be willing to post a youtube video of myself doing something completely humiliating but i'd need to get paid..." The winner's answer is "attention by at least three strangers."
This is a small comic that personifies the mindset that a lot of us have. Obviously this is a caricature. Everyone wants to be famous, nothing wrong there, but the extent that people go to in an attempt to attain such status is egregious. I've seen quite a few videos in my time on youtube that are quite preposterous.

But my quarrel is: what has been entrenched in the minds of everyone that makes us all strive to be famous? I would imagine the mindset would be that of Drake, "I just want to be successful". Being famous does not necessarily equate to money or the desired quality of life, it just means that more people watch your every move, good or bad. It means that the praise is high but the persecution is higher. I would like to reiterate that being famous is not a bad thing, but our motivation to be simply famous derails us from our real passions. I think it should also be noted that any amount of fame takes work to sustain, often times people don't or are not willing to put in the work required to reach the stratosphere. And heck who knows, perhaps what you love to do will garner you the rewards if you do it diligently and passionately.

Im looking to galvanize everyone in hopes that they would be the best at whatever they strive to be. Don't follow the fame, follow the passion.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

For your Entertainment

Attention Deficit Tour and Schoolz Out from B.Wallington on Vimeo.

This is simply some footage from my eventful night around Detroit with my people. First we had some performances at The Shelter: Octane and Wale (Mr. Nike Boots himself). Then i flew over to The Majestic in my best VIP posture to catch Drake come on stage. I missed Big Sean who preceeded Drake because i was taping Wale, I can only be one man. But i did get him back on stage dancing around with Drizzy and Wale. Enjoy

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Malice Video Blog

Malice is one half of the duo,Clipse, for those familiar with rap, however this isn't what you are thinking. He gives an excellent depiction of REAL life along with a solid message. The readership here pretty much knows how to behave but its cool to see a rapper with some sense. Its also pretty funny, slight humor. I like it. Malice might be my new favorite rapper

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Mamba vs. The King

Alright lets do it! I've been hearing quite a bit of chatter going around about who is better Kobe or LeBron. Here's the climate: It's playoff time and the Lakers lead the Rockets 3-2 in the Western Conference Semis after beating the Jazz 4-1. The Cavs are spectators momentarily as they have gone 8-0 through the postseason and have won every game by double digits. That's just so you can see where everyone's head is.

So let's breakdown Kobe first, after all "K" comes before "L". Kobe is what many would call a virtuoso, he excels at every facet of the game. From beyond the arch Kobe can spot up as well as create his shot off the dribble, mid-range yields the same results. As far as the painted area he can post up with efficiency as well as slash. Offensively he covers the entire gamut. Defense, this is going the undercard of the argument for both of these guys because neither of them actually buckles down and plays great defense on a consistent basis. When Kobe "feels" like it he plays better than average one on one perimeter D against guards and forwards. Now onto a very important litmus test, does he make his teammates better? The answer is a very soft "yes"

Here goes LeBron, most experts would say he is a bruiser. LeBron imposes his game on the opposition. From beyond the arch he is good when hot, not necessarily consistent, and not very good as a "spot up" shooter. His mid-range game is remarkable; creates his own jump shot and can hit anywhere from that area. As far as the paint is concerned he is literally unstoppable when he wants to drive to the bucket, but he is void of a back to the basket or "post" game. On defense LeBron plays exceptional help defense. He doesn't really lock his man down but he will certainly play the passing lane for a steal and come from the help side and block. Also he will voraciously snag rebounds, which is the last part of playing defense. As far as making his teammates better he gets a resounding "Yes".

I have to lean with LeBron actually, although it may seem that he is deficient in a couple of areas, he is unstoppable in others which make his deficiencies null and void, therefore they don't hurt him in this argument. Also it is important to note that he makes his teammates better which goes a long way in a team sport. As good as Kobe is he wasn't blessed with the same physical features as LeBron and that also gives James an advantage and makes the game a whole lot easier for him.

Go ahead weigh in and tell me where im deficient.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Putting your Feet on Solid Ground

Zach Bonner, and 11-year old from Tampa, FL is gearing up to walk from his Tampa to Washington D.C. in a campaign labeled, "My House to the White House". Bonner is doing this in hopes of bringing a heightened awareness to homeless children across the United States. The young man has already completed a couple of charity walks to Atlanta and to Tallahassee. He also has his own registered non-profit organization, Little Wagon Foundation Inc. The name is derived from his charitable efforts as a 7-year old when he pulled his little red wagon throughout the neighborhood to attain items for victims of Hurricane Charley back in 2004.

I thought this was a phenomenal story, a young lad committed to helping people at an age where many children aren't quite on that train of thought and at a time when the nation is struggling severely. This is a motivating story that encourages everyone to do their part whatever that part happens to be. I know it's not everyone's calling to do walking, but i think we all play a part even if it is just helping kids in your neighborhood. I love to see help being distributed where it is needed most. Personally i believe you can get a lot more things done by participating at the grass roots level of it all. Good story, good heart.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Running a Losing Race

Yesterday businessman Dave Bing was elected as Mayor of the City of Detroit. Bing is a Hall of Fame NBA player who played for the Detroit Pistons through the late 60's and mid 70's. He is the founder of the steel manufacturer, The Bing Group.

I have no gripe on him winning the election, but i have a gripe that there was even an election to have. Bing overcame interim mayor Cockerell to hold the position after it was vacated by Kilpatrick, who was jettisoned by the city of Detroit. Bing however still has to run in the August 4 primary to be placed on the November ballot, then if he wins that then he may hold the seat for four years. This can essentially turn out to be a disaster. The election cost the city roughly $2.5 million, which can be fused into the current deficit of $250 million. Perhaps Bing serves for six months, how much can he get turned around? And if he doesn't begin to turn things around and flows with the current, then you have wasted your time again. I haven't received my copy of the law or statute that states an election must be held but i honestly think there needed to be an executive decision made and someone should have vetoed that.

For a city that is struggling in the capital and equity department there have to be smarter steps taken. And for those that are still advocates of KK, this is also a part of his egregious vestige. One bad step only leads to another. To give you a pulse of what the city thought of the election, only 15% of the registered voters turned up for the election. I do not know specifically what that indicates, whether they were opposed to it taking place or they just don't care. However this certainly does not evoke positive perceptions. In an attempt to make things right, i feel Detroit has erred on this one. If you know more than i do feel free to educate me, but until someone does this seems to be a losing proposition.

Look What i Got

Alright 'Sofa I just attained a new personal camcorder to chronicle my adventures, and i will be taking you for a ride from time to time (like right now). This was just a test as i was rolling. But im going to be adding a different dimension to blog. What can I say, we are growing. Don't fret I wont forget the dialogue and discussion. -By the way you can watch it in HD if you go to vimeo's website-

Monday, May 4, 2009


This is sheer pandemonium in my eyes. As much as I love sneakers, you will not catch me sleeping outside for days tarrying for a shoe. For the oblivious, this is the second colorway of the Air Yeezy's (Kanye West x Nike) that dropped Saturday May 2. Although I had a friend try to alter my decision, it didn't work. To each his own, and i am actually happy for the people that were able to get them. The guy running around in Cali with them on his feet is actually a friend of Kanye's and that's why he is walking around in them, pre-release. So check it out just gives you a pulse on America and the sneaker world.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

The $540 dollar Debate

Recently everyone's favorite homegirl M.O. (thats what I call her) stepped out in a pair of sneakers by French designer Lanvin. There is a part of me that solely wanted to post this because it was about sneakers, lucky for me it has relevance beyond that (plus its my blog anyway). She and Jilly were at a D.C. Food bank for a Feeding America event. The detail that has left some folks with a bitter feeling is the fact they run about $540.

The dominant sentiment was ''They're in poor taste. That's way too much to spend on a sneaker, especially in a recession.'' This is according to a poll embedded within the webpage of the Daily News article, if I recall the percentage was 59% against and 41% for. I wasn't bothered the least bit by it, as I operate off the assumption that some of her pumps cost thousands of dollars. Also I don't know how she obtained them, perhaps she didn't even have to pay for them. Maybe she did but they reimburse her. The media builds hype over hype about her outfit selections and appearance, therefore it is obviously important to THEM. Since they consistently insinuate that her appearance is so noteworthy perhaps she does need to put on some of the best, or at least perceived that way, sneakers around. Another key point that I learned after some reading is that this isn't the first time she has donned some Lanvins, so it appears that this is a sneaker she feels comfortable with...I say let her be

Let me find out M.O. is a sneaker head! In my quest to eradicate the world of corny sneakers I have attained a new level of hope. Us 1, Them 0. Now who's got a problem with me and M.O.!?

Friday, May 1, 2009

Must be the Money

As you guys know i do brief reading in my limited spare time. This time i was nudged to get some perspectives on the subject of money and friendships. The article i read professed that huge differences in income put a strain on both participants. It stated the wealthier person feels a level of guilt for the things they have, considering that the friend has quite a bit less. They feel awkward about inviting them to gatherings in fear that the other friend may be uncomfortable. The other friend feels bad about the paucity of his/her bank account. They feel as though they have to keep up, often acquiescing to spend more money than they should or living at times above their means.

To be frank (who else would i want to be), most people live above their means. I've always imagined that good friends would be just that regardless of circumstance. It sounds like a problem of (as the kids say) not keeping it 100. If you are honest with yourself then you can be honest with others, and people respect and adore honesty. Perhaps people get caught up in the details of life and forget the simple things. The fact that these two friends enjoy each others company and have a blast together is not something that should be overlooked. There is often too much emphasis and attention directed on putting people into a box or category, its almost as if we forget to label people as simply, well, people. I don't want to get too MLKish but people should be judged on the content of their character. Friendships have no rules, as one cares for the other and the sentiment is reciprocated, they shall be friends...qualifications met. From my experiences i don't know that i agree with what i read 100%.

What does the 'sofa readership think? How heavily do you feel that money weighs on friendships? Since we're talking money, let me get your two cents.