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!

Finally an Official Holiday, But There Should Be More (Juneteenth)

Tomorrow would be the first time it became federal

This 2nd Independence Day of sorts had every right to be known

156 years too long

For all to know about that important day

The papers were signed and the calendars will have it for future generations

While a federal holiday was a good gesture

Bigotry didn’t and wouldn’t stop there

The hatred towards those descended from the emancipated was still at a fever pitch

The denials of American history become stronger

Attempting to burn the books despite the net existing

Was freedom truly free?

Was there a pure jubilation in sight?

After the last one was found in Galveston all this time

Would “All people are created equal” actually mean what is says on paper?

Plica Vocalis Retribution

They wanted the purest silence

24 karat taciturn acoustics

Whenever the “wrong” kind of male voice is spotted in earshot

Not a raised one or a defiant one

Just existing made them inflamed

Vying for the erasure for the crime of just being

Excuses compound together

Under the subterfuge of azure eyes

The extraction happened

No contract, warnings, or potions

Yet chaining the vocal cords

The desire to bring it back scorched brightly

Once the morales lower than Mariana’s Trench were in sight

Diving towards a thousand fathoms

Where no one can hear anyone scream

Vocal larceny was at it’s peak

And it was a challenge to get it back

How dare they rob the sound

Once the voice would be retrieved

Only a more aggressive homage to a devil ray mage crafted by the Rising Sun

Yet transplanted from a Nordic kingdom would suffice for them

The thievery guild will be repaid in kind

Forever the muted scourges

Writhing without sound

As bodies dissolve into foam

On the acidic ocean they created

Such retribution was a primal scream

When the thieves became infautated by their romance of one person’s silence

Trademarking “Yoruba”? Shame on you, Timbuktu (the UK company)!

It’s been a while since I talked about news around the world, but I saw this video which ticked me off so much that I just have to talk bout it.

There’s a British company called Timbuktu who had the temerity to trademark the word “Yoruba”. For those who don’t know any thing about that word, it refers to an actual African ethnic group and language associated with Nigeria, Benin, and Togo although Nigeria has a huge Yoruba population. Some famous people of that ethnicity involve actor John Boyega, basketball player Hakeem Olajuwon, and rapper Wale to name a few. The Nigerian community got infuriated by this trademark controversy and rightfully so. They were raising awareness to this issue. Also, am I the only one who noticed that this company is named after the famous Malian city?

This is just blatant cultural appropriation and I hope Timbuktu gets enough pressure to drop the trademark. I never bought anything from them and I hope there’s a giant boycott against them for what they did. What’s up with these companies trademarking African things? You have this recent case, Louis Vuitton making “luxury” Maasai cloths, and (I will not stop repeating this example because this company deserves the smoke) Disney freaking trademarking the phrase “Hakuna Matata”! These corporations need to stop doing this and I hope people stop buying their things. Think about it, they trademarked the name of an ethnic group consisting of millions of people around the world and not just in Western Africa. How would people react if Timbuktu or any company trademarked the name(s) of another ethnic group such as Irish Travelers, Sicilians, or Ashkenazim? I’m sure there would be even more outrage if anyone dared to do so. Nobody should be turning ethnicities into intellectual property.

The fact that people tell me that cultural appropriation isn’t bad or doesn’t exist is just idiotic because they never had to deal with their heritage being slighted in the least.

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.