Synapses, Soup, Scandal and Alicia Keys

Every now and then I see a photo that will cause my brain to go into search the archives mode. I can almost feel synapses firing that haven’t been used in years and years. Those obscure brain connections take me to a place where I can see pictures, smell smells, feel the briskness of fall or the heat of summer.

The photo above is of a neighborhood in New York City called Crown Heights. It’s in the borough of Brooklyn. And although I’m pretty sure I’ve never been to Crown Heights, this photo takes me back to my coming of age in New York City.

The architecture, the trees, the fall shadows, are all so familiar. Seeing this photo is like taking a trip without ever leaving home.

This week the weather finally changed a bit. Well, for this area it changed. It wasn’t anything too dramatical. (is dramatical a word?) We really don’t have seasons here. Our weather is more like constant Spring with a few rainy days, a few cool days and a few warm days.

So, now we are having a few cool days. Not cool by the standards of the rest of the country but cool for here. And, there’s nothing like cool weather to make me crave certain things. Things like cuddling, sweaters, leather backpacks and soup!

This week I actually made soup. I used chicken stock, sausage, onions, mushrooms, corn and jasmine rice. I seasoned it only with pepper and a little margarine.

I let it simmer for about 40 minutes and the result was oh so satisfying! I really enjoyed it and The Girlfriend enjoyed it too. And, after we ate we cuddled on the sofa! Soup and cuddling in the same fall evening, what could be better!

The internets are abuzz with debate about the TV show Scandal. The show, which airs on Thursday nights (which is tonight as I write this) and stars the stunningly beautiful Kerry Washington (whom I am told smells like honey and almonds).

Lot’s of women, especially Black women seem to love the show. And, supposedly lots of men, especially Black men hate the show.  And, of course, there are outliers. Like me, a Black woman who hates the show and lots of Black men who, maybe don’t love the show, but certainly like it.

Most of the controversy stems from the sordid affair the main character, Olivia Pope played by Kerry, is having with a White dude who is the President of the United States.

My problem with the storyline is two-fold. First, the show is very daytime soap opera-ish to me. And I’m no fan of soap operas. Second, it’s annoying to me that for a group of people that are so lacking in representation on network TV to have the only show starring a Black women to feature a plot where she is having an affair with a married guy.

The show which is set in Washington, D.C. and modelled after an actual real life person, in my opinion, could have been a fascinating political drama. Which considering the often crazy antics and generally incompetent governance of the political class in the Nation’s capitol would have been right on time.

But, no, we get some trashy, overwrought, overacted, wordy, nighttime soap opera. I just wish for more. Much more.

Finally, Alicia Keys in the last few years has been seriously branching out from her singing and songwriting roots. She’s acted, produced Broadway plays and television movies. Well, AK continues to expand her reach by executive produceing and producing the music for a new film called The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete.

The film stars one of my very favorite actors Jeffrey Wright along with Anthony Mackie, Jordin Sparks and Jennifer Hudson.

Those of you who have been reading this blog for a while know that when it comes to films I love two elements in my films. The first, the coming of age genre. The second, New York City. And, this film is guess what? A coming of age film set in New York! Whoopie!

The film opens today, October 11! So, check your local theaters. And, of course, if you see it please let me know what you thought of it.


Do certain photos take you back?
Are you a soup person?
Do you watch Scandal?
Does AK’s new film sound interesting?

Likes and Dislikes

Here are a few people and things I’m liking and disliking this week


– Classic deep old school NYC House Music like this

– Walking through overgrown foliage

– The New York Daily News

– Grilling on my tiny hibachi grill on a whim on a weeknight

– Track athlete Ivet Lalova


Oprah Winfrey using an incident of racial discrimination as publicity for her new film.

– NFL linebacker(?) James Harrison formally of the Pittsburgh Steelers is now playing for the Cincinnati Bengals? WTF?

Go0gle has now admitted that it reads all GMail emails.

– Running out of stuff I want to eat two days before I planned to go grocery shopping.

CBS’ The Talk

What are you liking/ disliking this week?

Random thoughts…

Here are a few random things on my mind at the moment.

01. Remember when I asked what you thought Anthony Wiener‘s chance of winning the New York City mayors race? I think most said they wouldn’t vote for him. So, guess what, Wiener is now leading the polls in the mayors race. Lol. I told you guys that New York politics is crazy. And not only is Wiener in the lead but the former Governor Eliot Spitzer, who had to resign after a prostitution scandal, is running for NYC comptroller.

02.  I’m sure all of you have heard about the airplane crash out here over the weekend. Amazingly all but two people survived the crash. It’s going to be interesting to find out what caused the crash. Anyway, on Saturday when the crash happened I almost missed the news. That’s because when I turned the TV on a little after noon and saw the Breaking News graphic on the screen I ignored it and changed the channel only to see it again on another local channel. That’s when I listened to see what happened.

But, the local news stations use the Breaking News graphic so much that I’ve started to ignore it. That’s because when they say it’s breaking news it almost never is. When something happened hours ago, it’s no longer breaking news. But, obviously local news stations use the Breaking News graphics as a marketing tool rather than a true alert to breaking news.

And, sure enough on Sunday, 24 hours after the crash, they still had the Breaking News graphic on the screen.

03. One final thing about the airplane crash. Today on the news, both national and local, I’ve seen the reporters calling the flight attendants who helped the passengers off the plane “heroes“. So, I’m thinking that helping passengers in an emergency situation is what flight attendants are paid to do. That’s their real function on a plane. So, if you are paid to do a job and you do it, are you a hero? Are firefighters heroes every time the put out a blaze? Are paramedics heroes every time they save a life? All of these people, in my opinion, are to be admired and brave, but, are they really heroes?

What do you think?
Are you surprised Anthony Weiner is leading the NYC mayoral race?
Do your local TV news stations overuse “Breaking News” too?
Are people who get paid to help people in emergencies heroes?

10 Questions…

AK with the President of the United States 

10. What took me so long to sign up for Netflix?

09. Will President Obama ever be President of Black America give a speech in front of a Black audience where he speaks as the President rather than the Daddy-in-Chief of Black America?

08. Did you know that premium canned tuna was so amazingly good?

Best song of the year and worst video of the year

07. Will I ever get tired of Robin Thicke’s song Blurred Lines?

05. Why do I miss the NFL so much?

04. What interesting place have you been to lately?

03. Which is worse; the threat of tornadoes or the threat of earthquakes?

02. Will Anthony sexting scandal Weiner be the next mayor of New York City? (I’d vote for his wife Huma, above)

01. Who is your celebrity crush at the moment?

I look forward to reading your comments! 🙂