Some positive vibes came my way, but…

I can’t say I’m genuinely happy most of the time, but it did happen. It felt great when people have been encouraged by me in an unexpected way. It was also great being encouraged by some people that I know.

This was all fine and good, but I haven’t been too creative besides my poems on here. Part of me feels like I’m being lazy of sorts given the original concept of this blog. I won’t be posting as often on this blog, but maybe once or twice a week. We’ll see what happens.

Being creative is really hard especially when it’s the Ospreyshire-type of creativity. Mine isn’t better than anyone’s, but it is very different.

Something to calm me down while also able to open some eyes: Wode Maya in South Sudan while dealing with VERY tall people

Here’s something different.

I’ve been checking out various videos from Ghanaian travel vlogger Wode Maya from time to time. He made multiple videos when he recently went to South Sudan of all places. It was very fascinating to see the country destroying negative stereotypes as some constant war zone. Wode was pleasantly surprised when he visited that country and how it was nothing like how the mainstream portrays it.

One of his adventures involved talking to people of the Dinka tribe who are a major ethnic group in South Sudan. They are one of the tallest ethnic groups in the world and there are several people in the upper six feet to even SEVEN feet range! The man you see in the thumbnail and later in the video is 7’3″. That just blew my mind because he’s literally 13 inches taller than me! It’s no wonder you have several basketball players coming out of that country and even joining different NBA teams. It was funny seeing the short Wode Maya being absolutely dwarfed by people who are head and shoulders taller than him.

I know it isn’t my usual stuff on the blog, but I wanted to do something different to calm down and to have some fun educational things going on. My geography nerd-dom is showing again and that’s one interest I’ve never been ashamed of liking. 🙂

Also, happy 10th anniversary this year, South Sudan!

Some Music and a Podcast Interview: Cybersix, Buja Praise, and Alexander Roth

I really need to decompress with the stress in my life as well as finding out about atrocities not talked about in the history books that I was unaware about. This doesn’t mean I’m apathetic. I can only take so much morbidity at a time. Come on, people. I’m a human being, you know. I thought I would switch this up with some interesting videos involving a theme song, a Burundian band, and an interview.

Those of you who follow one of my other blogs where I cover film, documentary, and anime reviews, I recently covered the Canadian/Japanese/Argentinean series Cybersix on there. I remember watching that show on Fox Kids when I was in elementary school (wow, does that give away my age or what?). The theme song was something I remembered back then and I re-discovered this show on RetroCrush of all places! I was gobsmacked that this obscure cartoon can be streamed for free legally online and that they would play all 13 episodes there. The theme song was handled by Canadian jazz/pop singer Coral Egan and this song really gets stuck in your head. I think they should give Cybersix a remake with a longer storyline. It’s also a breath of fresh air seeing a superheroine who ISN’T Marvel or DC for a change.

I know gospel isn’t everyone’s thing. I respect that. Recently, I got into Bukuru Celestin who is a Burundian musician who’s currently based in America. I first heard of him due to his collab EP with jazz band Snarky Puppy. Apparently, he also has a gospel band side project called Buja Praise. They incorporate songs in English, Kirundi, and Swahili with some African rhythms mixed with Western instrumentation. They have a great sound and certainly don’t sound like the typical K-Love fair. Of course, the title of this song got my attention for obvious reasons (don’t lie, you were thinking the same thing), but it is a completely different song. I also got to message them the other day. Yes, I brought up THAT controversy and they think a certain mouse trademarking that phrase is so stupid and they’re going to keep on singing this song. Good on you, Buja Praise! Way to do your best to preserve the Swahili-phone cultures even if that language isn’t the main one in Burundi (Kirundi is the #1 language there). I wonder how fans of that particular movie franchise would feel knowing this song exists…

I usually don’t put podcast interviews on here, but this snippet was very fascinating. David Francisco is a Portuguese wrestler currently living in England and he interviews Alexander Roth who is a Black British wrestler. They discuss the Everything Patterned show at Wrestling Resurgence. Some of you may remember me talking about this show a couple of years ago which was a Black History Month event in England (context: October is BHM in the UK and not February like in America). Alexander Roth and David Francisco talk about the impact of this indie BritWres show and what it meant for positive representation in the wrestling scene. It was very insightful with Roth talking about being in that show in tag team action and how it inspired others in ways he would’ve never expected. I did like his experience in this event and how he was floored with the social media response as well as getting a message from America of all places. His comment about humans being the only creatures who “beef over” skin color unlike snakes, lions, leopards, etc. with his analogy. This form of entertainment and athleticism isn’t for everyone obviously, but give this a listen. Also, Everything Patterned was SO much better than anything I’ve seen in WWE or AEW. Just saying.

100 Years Later…Never Forget Black Wall Street!

https://www.oklahoman.com/story/news/2021/05/26/tulsa-race-massacre-survivors-reparations-black-wall-street/4947306001/

Today marks an entire century after one of the biggest racial massacres happened in America. The sad part is most people didn’t learn about this event in school.

Feel free to check the link in the post for more information especially with the recent news about the survivors speaking trying to get the government to recognize this event.

For those that don’t know, I’m referring to the Black Wall Street Massacre. This involves a neighborhood in Tulsa, Oklahoma called the Greenwood District. Side Note: Greenwood is what the G means in The GAP Band who are from that same city. The thing is that in the 1910s-1921, Greenwood was a Black-only area due to segregation and Jim Crow. However, this Black enclave consisted of businesspeople, doctors, lawyers, etc. It got the nickname of Black Wall Street because Black people were making Wall Street money at the time. This was due to them starting their own businesses as well as getting into the oil business which was booming at the time in the Sooner State. Crime was negligible at worst, a dollar could circulate 100 times in the community before exiting Greenwood, and some of these businesses involved grocery stores, banks, jewelry stores, fashion boutiques, hospitals, and other establishments. You even had people moving from as far as New York City and Chicago just to live in this neighborhood.

Unfortunately, things became hostile in 1921. There was a false sexual assault allegation against a Black man by a Caucasian woman in an elevator which enabled there to be a mob who became deputized to ransack Greenwood. They were deputized, killed Black people, burned down businesses, looted whatever was there, and even bombarded Black Wall Street with an airplane to raze the community. Several people died even though they only reported over thirty in the news. However, there were mass graves revealed just a couple of years ago. No one was ever punished by this massacre and you even had Tulsans who’s families have been there for generations who didn’t even know about this atrocity happening.

I didn’t learn about this until about a couple of years after I graduated college in a DJ Vlad interview of Immortal Technique of all things (this is before I knew Vlad was a culture vulture, so please forgive me) mentioning it in passing. I didn’t get really in-depth with it until I saw the documentary Hate Crimes In the Heartland which features the remaining three survivors who are all now centenarians. My blood froze when one of the women who lived through that massacre said her mom saw these mobs wearing American flags while armed while telling her “Your country is shooting at you!” while breaking into tears. I strongly recommend anyone to watch this to really get details of Black Wall Street and how there needs to be justice and reconciliation.

Hearing about Black Wall Street was both fascinating in how the people thrived while establishing their own businesses while at the same time infuriating me with this gross racist injustice that happened. The stories of people owning their own airplanes, getting rich from their own means, and succeeding even in Jim Crow-era Oklahoma was inspiring. At the same time, hearing about this brutality made my blood boil. Keep in mind, the Black Wall Street Massacre was the FIRST airstrike on US soil. Unlike Pearl Harbor twenty years later the fact where a foreign country (Japan, obviously) attacked them, this was an attack by Americans to Americans. This piece of history also reveals racist hypocritical rhetoric that still happens to this day. The “bootstraps” argument is null and void. These people in Greenwood DID pick themselves up by their bootstraps, but their homes and businesses were razed. The complaint about people looting businesses during some of the BLM protests for example, falls flat (note: people shouldn’t be looting anyway) when a white mob looted and destroyed businesses and never got punished for their actions. This is still American history that needs to be talked about and taught. Tulsa wasn’t the only example (Slocum, TX and Rosewood come to mind) when it comes to these situations.

This didn’t even get mainstream attention to the best of my knowledge until the Watchman 2019 TV sequel of all things where it was a plot point in the show. You had people who thought it was wholly fictional until they did a basic Google search. One of my older paternal cousins didn’t even know about Black Wall Street until she saw the Watchman HBO show when she told me when we were on Zoom (she lives multiple states away from me). The other example I can think of even though this involves something very political was the backlash against Donald Trump’s rally in Tulsa. It was originally going to be on Juneteenth until they changed the date due to the ramifications and symbolism of it being a double whammy of having an event on that holiday in the same city where this massacre happened. I was shocked that mainstream news channels talked about that even if it was brief when news broke out about the rally.

I thought this would be very important to share. People need to learn about this and other cases in this country. I want justice to prevail and for there to finally be healing going on. Several people regardless of race or ethnicity didn’t know about this until fairly recently. I’m not doing this to shame others. Is this an uncomfortable part of American history? Yes, and I don’t dispute that. I don’t want this history to repeat and I hate seeing racist hypocrisy going on in this country. There needs to be reconciliation. Never forget.

Losing Hobbies (Yet Another Post About Fandom Shaming)

I really feel like talking about this subject again.

I’ve been subjected to fandom shaming multiple times in my life. One thing I sometimes did back then was to “hate” something just to spite the person who shamed me. It usually involved various bands or movies and I would tell them straight up “I no longer like the thing you made fun of me for.” just to get on their nerves. Sometimes it would be a temporary thing where I would like something again. I’ve never been able to get someone to stop liking something, but at most when I know I’m right about something I have made people not look at something the same way again especially if there’s something problematic about a fandom or a piece of media. The most successful attempt even though I was only passing information involved telling people about a VERY certain 2019 Netflix documentary covering a music plagiarism case. If you know me, you know exactly what it is, what song, who was involved in that court case, and what caused it to be the straw that broke the camel’s back which caused that lawsuit to happen. I think some of you will get the answer right. It certainly opened up some eyes and also further proved me right about what was associated with that case.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve been losing hobbies. Some of it involves me growing out of certain interests, but other times I remembered being made fun of for certain interests where I just gave up. It really didn’t helped that I struggled with committing to certain activities when I was a lot younger even though there were other issues I was dealing with then. Part of me wondered what it would be like if I gave into temptation to get someone to stop liking something and how effective I could be at it. Conversely, I listened to a podcast where someone talked about how you have so many people online tearing others down (Twitter and YouTube being very specific examples in the conversation) and he wondered how anyone could get an enjoyment in doing so instead of doing something else like talking a walk outside for example. This felt like an angel and devil on my shoulder kind of thing where I think if I should verbally attack someone for their fandoms. I’m not going to pretend I’m a saint. There is a sliver of me wanting to do so as an indirect revenge against those who insulted me for having some hobbies. There are even times where I feel like I have to make pre-emptive self defense statements before I say why I like something by finding any counterarguments to defend what I have interests in. This even goes with some of my more serious interests, too.

Sorry for rambling. While there are bigger issues in the world, this is something that is still bothering me. Has anyone else had that issue with giving up certain interests because of fandom shaming or just getting older? Have you ever dealt with similar situations?

Some music I’ve been listening to recently: Breakwater, The Whispers, and Morella’s Forest

I discovered Breakwater on a whim. When I heard the first few seconds, I realized that Daft Punk sampled this song to make “Robot Rock”. This was a really fun song with the right mix of guitars, bass, and synths. How did I not know about this band even though they were before my time? This song really slaps and I want to check out their other songs and their albums.


Can’t you tell I’ve been on a bit of an old-school kick? I heard the song Rock Steady a few times a long time ago, but this song came to my attention after seeing it used while synching the Sami Zayn dancing meme. I was unaware that The Whispers have been around since the 60s and I have heard some of their other songs before. One such example is “And the Beat Goes On” which I also recently heard while I was shopping one day. Of course for my generation, we mainly know it because “Miami” by Will Smith used the beat for that one. “Rock Steady” is a really fun song that will certainly get one moving.

Technically, I’ve listened to this song before, but not this version. This is the lost band Morella’s Forest who were a gothic rock/new wave band from the 80s. Two of the members would be none other than Ronnie Martin and Jason Martin of Joy Electric and Starflyer 59 respectively as well as their one-time side project The Brothers Martin. Joy Electric would re-release this song in their typical experimental synth pop sound, but I wasn’t aware the song was older than that. It was surreal hearing that song with guitars, basses, and drums though. I also found out Ronnie and Jason were only 18 and 16 when they recorded this album that was lost until this year. It was very fascinating getting into the musical history of the Martins since I listened to both bands starting out in junior high and Joy Electric was certainly an influence on Ospreyshire as a recording project. No, this is unrelated to that Tooth & Nail band that was there in the 90s and early 00s.

Untitled Academia Rant

So much self-realization after weeks of reflection

An anniversary shows up after getting the gown and cap

I proved I could make it in four year’s time on time

Some of my peers couldn’t even say that

While I wasn’t a valedictorian or salutatorian in that realm

I still took my studies seriously

There were things I learned which I appreciated

But as I grew older, I’ve been realizing what I DIDN’T learn regardless if it was relevant to my degree or not

Socializing was a trial by fire of sorts

I was awkward at times, I do confess

I was too music of a music fan and didn’t talk about my other interests that much.

With that said, I realized how much I was in hell

Self-righteous fake Christians moralizing and wrecking my self-esteem in subtle ways

Some men and women got to be psychological rapists to me while pretending to be my friend

I wish I knew about the insidious and hidden attacks to my mind

One attempt failed when one person said “White power!” to my face my sophomore year

Boy, did I give him and his buddies the riot act by yelling at them that day

Overt, covert…didn’t matter

I didn’t deserve the torture

While I’m thankful for certain professors teaching me and making some legit friendships,

I underestimated the negatives

I should’ve progressed farther after the fact

There were situations out of my control and some were in control, but I should’ve improved in the latter

Hidden pains wreck my psyche with these echoes of the past

I hope to succeed better than all the fake friends and true enemies I knew during those four years

And not be crippled by my regrets

Easier said than done.

Semi-Hiatus in April

Here’s some important news. I won’t be posting as often on this blog for April. This is going to be a crazy busy month since I have some creative priorities going on especially with a certain annual challenge I do multiple times a year with April being one of those key months. Normally, I post on here Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, but I may post once a week on there assuming if I have time given my other priorities.

However, I do have some good news. Some of you are already doing this, but I will still have things going on with Iridium Eye which is my film/anime/documentary blog which you can check out here. I have reviews set up for the month including a Top 7 list that I’m sure will get some attention. Feel free to check out that blog if you want to see my thoughts on obscure movies, foreign films, documentaries, short films, lesser-known anime, art house films and even some non-mainstream animation.

Hope you’re all doing alright.