Monday, July 04, 2005

Picture Me Coolin’ Out on the 4th of July…

…and if you heard we were celebrating that’s a worldwide lie.

Reason 1
Fuck your conferences and resolutions and agreements, how about Hemp oil and Hybrids you fuckin' jizz? How about decent public transportation throughout every major city? Ever try riding a bus in Houston? Shit. We got a train that can take you from downtown to the football stadium. Whoopty shit we can breathe on Sundays in the winter. Public transportation is barely an option in this city and riding a bicycle in most parts is a virtual deathwish, believe me, I know. I do it a lot. You gotta have Spidey senses to ride a bike in this bitch cuz those Hummer drivers on their cell phones WANT to kill you. Luckily I do have Spidey sense. But I'm different.

I’m not saying that any other countries have got it right when it comes to curbing global warming and maybe slowing the disappearance of our ozone layer, but shit man, there’s plenty of simple, earth friendly solutions right out there for us all that no one seems to be giving a fuck about. If we’re such world leaders we should be leading the way to saving it, not destroying it.

And we've got to stop hating on other countries simply because they are different from us. Christ, I turn on Fox News sometimes just to see what the enemy is spouting off about, and I'm always hearing criticisms of other countries with lower poverty rates than ours, better health care and less (current) obsession with war. (Even the "nice" countries like the Netherlands have disgusting histories, I know, it's just our turn to try and run shit, I know). It's like America is the only country on Earth making any sense, when that is just a total lie.

I'm not mad at anyone for being patriotic, though I am a bit peeved at the real estate agent in my neighborhood who put flags in the front corner of all of our yards the other day with a lil white card with her picture attached to the stick. Driving home the other night I felt a distinct pain in my stomach as I saw all these things lining my street. I pulled over to see if I could read the card from my car, but couldn't see exactly what was on there. I just saw a little picture with some words around it. I automatically assumed that these flags were some sort of tribute to a kid from my neighborhood currently serving in Iraq. I was like, "Oh no man, this must be some sort of tribute. Whose child died? Oh Shit!" For real, cuz this was like on the 1st or some shit, and I couldn't imagine anyone just going out and putting flags on everyones lawn as some sort of promotional thing. But alas and alak, it was. I was depressed for a minute till I saw what it really was.

I have a couple young friends over there right now, so yeah, I get a lil edgy when I think about that shit.

But seriously, I don't hate this country, I love it. I have tons of great friends and this beautiful land is covered with wonderful people. I just can't handle how the media is currently portraying so much of the rest of the world, when honestly we really haven't got it that right at home. Turn on Fox and you'll think everything is wonderful here (except we've got to do something about these KIDNAPPERS and ACTIVISTS!), and everything sucks in the rest of the world. Everyone else is fucking up but we're just ballin' out of control.

Here's a lil story. A personal one. Those of you who read this thing regularly know that I have been having some troubles with my knee. On May 1st the thing swelled up to the size of a cantaloupe. I don't know why. (Still don't). All I know is that in 1991 I broke both of my knees acting like a monkey out of control (that's all you need to know) and in 2005 as I sat in my chair watching the Rockets lose to Dallas, it started blowing up again. I mean this thing BLEW UP. I never felt so much pain in my life. Not even when I broke it (cuz I was drunk then, but I mean, whatever). I broke my clavicle three years ago and it didn't hurt as much as this knee hurt.

So I went to the emergency room. Paid my $75 co-pay (on top of the $300+ we pay per month for insurance, GOOD insurance at that, not no rinky dink shit) and proceeded to lay on the little cot for 5 hours before anyone came to see me. That was for x-rays. Two hours later the doctor came to see me, drained my knee which was full of blood and fluid and told me to go see an orthopedic surgeon. I got ten good minutes with the dude.

You ever try seeing an orthopedic surgeon? It's damn near impossible. I called like 15 of them before I was able to get an appointment, and the one I got squeezed me in a week later. He looked at my X-rays, couldn't see anything, recommended that I get an MRI and then was out. Five minutes maybe were spent with me. Fine so I get the MRI and go back to see the Doctor one week later, he was nice and all but couldn't see anything wrong in the MRI so he said he didn't know what was going on, but to call if it happens again. He thought then that maybe it could be gout, but wasn't sure. Still isn't.

So two weeks ago I am heading out to KPFT to do the radio show, and the thing starts blowing up again. Almost as much as it did that first time in May. So I said, forget going to the emergency room. I've heard horror stories about what draining your knees can actually result in (infections, amputations...), so I waited till morning and called my doctor, who was not available. Again I sat on the phone calling Ortho's all over the city, no one could squeeze me in, so I called my doc's office back and basically begged until a nurse there found one of his partners who could see me. So that was a blessing. I went in there, dude came in, drained about a tenth of the fluid from my knee and gave me a prescription for some sort of steroid that really did nothing for me. Fine.

My appointment for my actual doctor was for the next week so I just toughed it out and waited. Went in to see him, with my three year old daughter in my lap the whole time going nuts, and he never shows up. No one comes in to tell me he is not there and when I limped out of the room after an hour or so to see what was up I was informed that it would be another 45 minutes or so. So I said, "Man, I don't know, i need to get her home an di Need to get back to work, is there any way I can reschedule?" And they said yes, July 11th is the next open date. I'm standing there with a huge knee, on crutches and in a brace like, "Yo I would love to get an answer sometime before the 11th." But they couldn't help me.

So I get mad and go home and get out my insurance book and call like 30 orthopedic surgeons. Earliest I can get in is end of July for some, mid August for others. OK fine, so I called my regular doctor and he's gonna at least look at my blood work to see if I have gout or not, and we will go from there.

My point for telling this story is not to say "MAN AMERICA IS ALL FUCKED UP MAN SHIT MY PANSY ASS CAN'T EVEN GET A DOCTOR." No it's to say that my experience is basically exactly the same shit I hear on TV about all these socialist countries with their evil health care programs. Bill O'Reilly will go on and on about how you can't get in to see a doctor in Canada if your frickin brains are oozing out of your ears and your foot has fallen off. But that's not completely true. I have friends in Canada and I write for some Canadian magazines, and talk to my editors fairly often. Their stories of going to the doctor are fairly similar to ours. You go to the Emergency Room, you gotta wait your turn, no shit. But you do get cared for, just like with a little patience I too will be cared for.

Difference is, they show their little ID card and don't have to drop the $75 co-pay, or $10 co-pay, or $25 co-pay or whatever it is on top of their insurance payment every month. I didn't have insurance for like 12 years. Now I am fortunate enough to make enough money to afford it Yeah we get it through my wifes actual job, but we still pay for it, it ain't free.

I'm making decent money right now. I can drop $75 if I have to. But how many people can't? Shit, two years ago I would have had a hard time with that. When you can't, yes there are options, like here in Houston you can get a gold card, but you better know the process first or you'll be screwed. When I broke my clavicle I spent some hours at the kitchen table making calls before I went to the emergency room. See in Houston we have a hospital called Ben Taub, if you don't have any money, you have to go there if you want to get some help, and maybe some financial assistance if you qualify. Going to Ben Taub is an adventure. You think waiting 7 hours is bad, go to Ben Taub and pitch a fuckin' tent. Bring lunch and dinner. Cuz you will be waiting like hell to get in that place.

But if you do go to Ben Taub and you have no insurance, you can get your care and then take your bill to a city office and apply for a gold card. After 3-4 visits and meetings and long ass waits, if you qualify, you can get the card and your health care will either be free or discounted and yes it is worth it. In order to get the card you have to be completely ass out, like you can't be making any money whatsoever.

Anyway this 4th of July as you stand over your barbecue and wave your flags and think about how superior we are as a nation, I wish some of you would maybe jump on the net and maybe book you a little trip to Canada, maybe Europe, maybe Japan. Go see some shit for yourself. We may be a superior nation when compared to a lot of nations, and yeah, most of us have it pretty good (no matter what the rap guys say - wait these days even the rap guys talk about how good we have it. We have platinum teeth, Hummers, expensive liquers, hookers, all that shit right at our finger tips...), in general we can survive. We're a strong nation, yes.

But there's other great nations out there and we need to stop allowing this propaganda to be spread to our children. It's a big world and it's there for us to explore. Don't be afraid of it. We've all got problems and we've all got things that make us great. Even in Iraq. Don't think that there's no kids over there, living just like you, wanting the same things as you, lazily listening to pop music and watching TV just like you, trying to survive just like you.

God Bless America yes, but our whole world needs a lil blessing these days and honestly, we all need to throw down these nationalistic tendencies and start working together. If those ice caps melt, we're all gonna drown. If that ozone disappears, we're all gonna fry. The rich, the poor, everyone. We really don't need to separate ourselves anymore from the rest of the world than we already have and YOU need to understand how much more is really out there for YOU.

Go see some shit. Book a trip. I'm still sober. No caffeine, alcohol, weed or tobacco for 12 days. And I'ma keep on with this shit for a minute. Probably won't go back to caffeine of tobacco ever. So you're gonna have to excuse me today. A sober 4th of July, is that even legal?

And that's another thing... fuck it I'm not gonna rant about the drug war and how stupid it makes our prison obssessed country look... That's another day.


On a lighter note. My July is pretty much planned out already as the arrival of little Elena Bella Sonzala is extremely imminent, possibly this week. So say a lil prayer for the new rugrat in our life. She can't wait to meet Chingo Bling and all the other rappers like her big sister Eva. But if you have nothing better to do on July 14th, and you don't cuz this is like show of the year, hands down, head on over to the Rhythm Room for this:

Bavu Blakes Presents a Blazing Saddles Showcase
Thursday, July 14th
Rhythm Room, 1815 Washington Ave.
Houston, TX; 9 p.m. - 2 a.m.
$7 Cover, Ladies Free 'til 11 p.m.

Bavu Blakes & D-Madness (Austin/full band)
Mojoe (San Antonio/full band)
Element7D (Austin)
Deloach (Monroe, La.) & DJ Cozmos (Houston)
DJ Chill (Houston)
Special Guest -- Steve Austin (Dallas)

For real y'all, if you haven't seen Bavu and the rest of these cats wreck it, then you are just not a very well rounded Texas hip-hop fan now are you? I'ma write a WHOLE LOT more about this as the date approaches and I'ma post my review and samples from that Blazing Saddles CD as well. You need to peep this one out. As do I, but um we'll see what Elena says, she's the boss now.


And when I first saw this I thought it was from Germany or some shit, but no, it was from right here in Houston. Our beloved Comets...

I got the link to that Chilloutzone site from my Belgian homeys at Wifebeater. Check their blog TODAY for some great photos of Japanese people caught in the act... Yes, THAT act. GET A ROOM!


In closing, if you don't subscribe to the Daily Dose, an email list from my man Greg Carroll at Girl Skateboards, you need to get on that shit. It helps in these troubled times. Greg Carroll, gregcarroll at girlskateboards dot com

Example -
"Are you one of the few who writes his own destiny? I hope so. I hope you will have the joy and thrill of waking up to a day you create the way you choose to create it. To me this is happiness: not wealth nor power nor fame but, instead, the inner strength to say, I did it my way and am glad for it."
Thomas D. Willhite
The Book of Fears

PEACE to you and everyone else, I'ma go find an MP3 or two for you in the next 24 hours to clear the proverbial palette from this little 4th of July rant. I promise not to make it a tradition.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

great post. respect for always tellin' it like it is. hope the knee heals soon, and blessings to you and the fam on the arrival of elena. -kellyc

6:27 PM  
Anonymous Bubonic B. said...


Damn, you guys ARE being lied to. Much love from Belgium (That little country in Europe that has good doctors a plenty, and cheap, effective, government sponsored social security for every single citizen.)

12:45 AM  
Blogger Pushermania said...

Prepare a room for me B!

And what up Kelly C! Will I ever see you again??? You need to make the trek to Realtown and come chill with us.

6:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

God I hate the fact that people ASSociate Bush's dumbass with MY state.

In other news, just something that crossed my smogged out mind the other day Matt...

Has anyone ever C & S'ed Sublime???

P.S. Shouts to SoReal on Blazing Saddles!!

2:18 PM  
Blogger Kevin Jackson said...

Well, this is interesting. I did a blog search for caffeine tea coffee and found your site. When I get some time I'll come back and find out where caffeine tea coffee appears and how it relates - if it even does. Take care - nice work.

2:39 PM  
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This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

12:20 PM  
Anonymous Baby said...

God Bless

9:30 PM  
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