Friday, December 29, 2017

Follow You Instincts

I tell you sometimes you just have to follow your instincts. God gave you this gift to perceive things before they happen. But you let your life and the things in it get in the way.

I've been driving around in my car for 2 weeks with my instincts telling me to go to the mechanic, not just because it's time for an oil change but something strange was going on and I knew I needed to go in.

I kept riding until 4 days ago I had to jump my car on the first run of the morning on a cold day. It worked fine all day after that, no problem. It sat out in the frigid cold for two days. It didn't start on the first start again...oh I'l just jump it again cause it's probably cause its cold out here. Cause I'm worried about where I had to go and what i had to do more than the fact that the car was telling me something, matter of fact it was screaming at me.

I started it today went to the mechanic but of course it's the afternoon and you know he is packed. So I tell him I'll come back if he is open tomorrow. Then I go out start the car and drive to the store. I'm two block from my house I'll just run in and get a few things. I come back out.....won't start. God blessed my ignorant ass with a kind lady that gave me a jump so I can get home.
So the next time your instincts speak to you, listen and heed its call.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

How I felt about the Tribune article on Bowen

Well when I first looked, I saw it was front page. Second I looked at that horrible picture I took. Black hoodie with my hood up looking slightly thuggish. I thought why the hell didn't i take off the hood from the beginning but the photographer had been talking to me and I was kinda comfortable so when he was ready to take pictures, it was cold that day and I just didn't take my hood down right away. So the pictures at the beginning he took weren't that way. They just decided to use that one....the one I hate now that I see it on the front page of the Tribune.

Second the quote they used. Yeah I said that in the midst of the conversation, but really? Use that one. I said plenty of other things that were much more significant than that. Reading on further in the article I got why they selected this quote for the article.

So now I'm reading the article. Yes, while it's factually correct. It missed the real point why Bowen has fallen into the situation it is in. First they blanked all the school into the situation of "they" (CPS) has put all this money and made these changes and nothing has worked. I beg to differ, look at the stats a little closer. As said in the article by Ms Kirmes, former principal. The school got a grant for two years and she instituted some programs that really helped the school. It would have continued to help the school if after those two years that money was still there. But of course with the money gone the programs were cut. The budget of Bowen has been cut every year and the principal no matter who it was had to cut programs, teachers and ultimately the school newspaper the voice of the students. So the problem isn't they gave money and nothing happens it's more like they cut the money and forced the principal to cut to be able to manage. Does that happen at the top CPS schools?

Another thing the article missed what the fact that the building isn't properly maintained. A dead tree, dirt in the gutters so long that plants started to grow out of it. Shingles coming off a roof that was supposedly done 5 years ago. Painting and rehab needed on the interior of the school and the biggest one for me no pool. Yes the pool has been serving as a storage area since before the school was restored from the four school campus. You can't tell me that students can succesful in an environment like this. Again this doesn't happen in the top CPS schools does it?

There was a mention of the charter school that is now in the annex building but the real disruption it caused wasn't fully addressed. When I was "shocked", it was because there was no warning from CPS. They just did it over the summer, took the school marquee and decided that Bowen wasn't significant. Since I am a board member of the alumni association and was helping the football coaches by mentoring the athletes. I had alums and friends ask me was Bowen closed. I was answering question for a while. The whole thing put people into the thought that CPS wants Bowen closed and they have made a choice to allow Baker to take its place. I couldn't get any support from alums who thought everything is doomed and "they are gonna do what they wanna".

Every quote that's in the article frame the author's attitude of oh poor Bowen. I got that sense when I talked to her. We don't need sympathy, we need a voice to speak up and say something about the conditions the principal, staff, supporters, parents and students are put through to support Bowen. But this article speaks from the outside and doesn't give voice to anyone inside. This right here makes me more determined to get the Bowen Arrow back going. These students need their voice back. because if this is what we get, if this is the story that is told then it appears to people we ARE doomed.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

That Jazz

I’ve always been a fan of the A-team but I looked back at the time between coming home from college, working at Andy Frain and going to Devry, I realized that I developed into a Hannibal Smith. Always coming up with a great plan to defeat something in the way.

Coming home after that year at Arkansas I was told by my mother. If you are going to stay here get a job or get in school. I did both. I went to school at Harold Washington and worked at airport for Andy Frain. The latter with the help of my mother who met someone that worked at the office. So now I’m in the grind. I just did the minimum, not really standing out not really doing anything other than what I had to do.

I stayed working at the airport for 8 years. I began to have another way of being creative. I started to have these feelings about certain rules they had. One in particular was the rules for shaving. I use to get told I could punch in until I shaved. So I was curious and looked at the actual rule and there wasn’t really any. It was just something about it being per United (Airlines) rule. Well I went to ask someone from United the rule. In hearing It I saw the loophole and decided to test it.

The loophole was if you had time off and you grew a beard you couldn’t be told to shave. So when I took my vacation I came back with a goatee. They asked me to shave it. I recited the rule to them. I could tell by the looks on there face they knew I was right. I was still told to shave. I got by that day without shaving by reaching around inside the door and punching in and walking out of the breakroom, but the next day I knew I wasn’t going to get away with it. I brought my shaver with me just in case. Of course I was told to shave. I waited until they were almost going to tell me to go home. I went into the bathroom across the hall and shaved. Came back and did the same thing like yesterday. The lead stopped me and told me to come in the room and when she saw me shaved, she chuckled a little and told me to punch in.

I knew going this route would get me disciplined, suspended or fired. So I came up with a plan to do surveys and have the people I transported in wheelchairs to fill them out. The overwhelming majority of them said as long as its neat and clean. I went back with my finding and was told they didn’t want change anything. In face while I was doing what I was doing they were busy changing the rule to a Frian rule about shaving so the debate would be over. I might not have won but hey my creative blossom grow a little and instead of being in that little box its in a bigger one. I felt good.

During those years I was bouncing around from school to school. Not really finding the one I was comfortable with building up a debt to learn technology. During that time I went to Devry, inspired by the commercials I believed it was the right place for me. Looking back and laugh but this was another chance for my creativity to grow, maybe not in an artistic way but if you ask my classmates it was pure genius.

I was in a programming language class and this instructor on the first day gave this strange speech to the class. In short she was saying she was the only teacher of this programming language in this school and she had more seniority that the department head. I guess she was trying to say we couldn’t complain about her. After that I was a little put of by this. Why the heck did she have to say all that. I found out quickly why.

She didn’t like to stay after the class so she would tell everyone to keep their notes out to the end of class. When the end of class came she bolted out the room down to her desk and out the door. So of course the students thinking she would be at her desk for questions got there to an empty chair. We asked the other instructor where she was. He smiled and pointed out the window were we could see her car pulling out the parking space.

Its time for creative measures. So I got together with a few of me classmates and we hatched this idea that I would sit somewhere were she couldn’t directly see me. I would put up my notes before class ended and I would leave right behind her. When class ended she left and I was right behind her. She looked back and had that damn he got me look. I got her at the desk and asked some questions until everyone else showed up.

The next class she watched me, even told me you better keep your notes out or you will miss something. So I told someone else to do what I did. It worked. So we continued to do a different person everyday. Even the rest of the class caught on and some of them would do it too. That plan save a lot of people and I was proud of it.

I had some other times where I showed this same nack for coming up with plans but these where the most memorable. So the take is there is always a way to get things done. Don’t let anyone make you think there is no way to do something about it.   

Thursday, August 31, 2017

90th & Commercial Ribbon Cutting Ceremony 083117

It was great to see the play streets project get started. Its something that is a kick off to revitalization on Commercial Ave. More great things to come. If you want to be part of the move to help make a greater neighborhood, stop by the South Chicago Chamber of Commerce.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

At this point its just funny.

For all those who know me. You know I've been chatting on the Internet since the mid 90s before it was even fashionable to the masses. To me chatting is communal, its something to do to meet people you normally wouldn't. I have tons of friends that I have chatted with that I have never met in person and probably never will. Its not an issue. But we are involved in each other's lives over a distances and its cool for both of us.

Back when I first started chatting there were no pictures on profiles, hell I don't even think we really had anything resembling a profile. The scanner was something you used at a job or university. So if you were lucky to have access you could scan a picture to send to someone. 8-bit as it was at least you could see who you were talking to.

I've been through catfishing before it even became a term. Since you didn't have to give a picture sometimes you get someone who would describe themselves nowhere near what they looked like so you can get to talk to them and fall for their personality then when you meet them and are disappointed with how they look you might see past it and still deal with them. This is the original catfish.

Today, we have profiles with pictures and videos and you think you would be identified more easy. But if you watch the show Catfish on MTv you will know that catfishing is still alive and well in the world.

So this brings me to what I wanted to talk about. A couple days ago I ran into this picture of a woman that looked nice on a google plus group. So I 1+ her. Just being nice and giving a compliment, nothing major.

So yesterday I get a message from her, in my mind I'm like ok someone to talk to cool I'll talk to her. She seems normal and I'm up front with her and say hey I'm just being friendly. She replies and says its cool. So the basic convo started, where you from?, What you do?, etc. So I had to leave the convo to do something and the nag hit me....."are you there?" she asked.

Now from the years of chatting on the Internet when you say I'm doing something and go away from the computer and get that question, then you go away again or take a long time to respond and you get it again. Red flags go up.

So, I took her picture (just like Nev would do on Catfish) and did a google search. In the process of copying the pictures I saw one of her posts that had her picture and a map of a town in MS just south of Memphis.....wait she told me she was from Alabama...LOL

When I did the google search on two of the pictures turns out it's a plus sized model from Cali. So then I laughed and blocked the profile.

So even I an old vet can get catfished but I caught it early. So anyone out there that get in this situation don't be embarrassed, don't feel bad just keep it moving. Its funny to me now.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Something rings true in this.

I was watching 12 Monkeys and this part kinda rings familiarity about being a consumer. Listen and tell me what you think.